Ashurst's partners vote for full financial integration

26 September 2013

Ashurst today announces that the full financial integration of Ashurst LLP and Ashurst Australia has been overwhelmingly approved by both partnerships and will take effect on 1 November 2013.

This will create a firm of more than 3,500 people, including 1,800 lawyers, across 28 offices in 16 countries, with a combined revenue of over £550 million/A$930 million.

The vote follows the announcement in 2011 that both firms would combine their businesses in Asia and re-brand Blake Dawson as Ashurst in March 2012 and that the firms would commit to merge by 2014. The merger vote was brought forward by six months.

The firm will have a single profit pool allocated on a managed lock-step system and a single unified management structure operating globally as one firm under the Ashurst brand.

Senior Partner of Ashurst LLP, Charlie Geffen, said:

"Completing the merger was always set to be a key step in achieving our ambitions of becoming a global elite law firm. We are delighted that the vision and strategy have continued to receive such a strong endorsement by both partnerships. The Asia Pacific market is predicted to double in size in the next few years and we now have scale and competitive strength within the region. More broadly, our expanded global network has resulted in substantial business opportunities. We have a very strong platform from which to capitalise on this further and address the continued challenges in the market and, overall, to deliver on our ambitious objectives."

Mary Padbury, Chairman of Ashurst Australia, added:

"We have achieved a significant amount since we originally announced our intention to merge and we are very pleased to progress towards full financial integration. The successful vote formalises an already strong and productive relationship. Full financial integration, a single profit pool, a uniform partner remuneration system and a seamless global governance and management structure will enhance our ability to effectively serve clients. The strong relationships that already exist across the merged firm will be enhanced by our full integration."

James Collis, Global Managing Partner, said:

"Over the last few years a great deal of work has taken place across practices and functions in terms of integrating the businesses and we have been operating as one firm for some time. Full economic integration will facilitate even greater collaboration and flexibility across teams and practices globally, thereby enhancing client service and opportunities for revenue growth as well as driving greater efficiency."

Australia Managing Partner, John Carrington, commented:

"The merger of our firms presented a compelling opportunity and the results we have so far achieved, both for our clients and our people, reinforce that. Our governance and management structure and sector focus will, we believe, bring us closer to achieving our key strategic objectives. Our Australian clients will continue to benefit from a committed full-service law firm in Australia, with the added benefit of international reach and expertise, and a growing platform in Asia Pacific."

Elections for the role of Chair, Vice Chair and the Board will take place shortly. The Board will comprise 14 members: elected Chairman and Vice Chairman who will come from different legacy firms; managing partner; four elected legacy LLP partners; an elected Asia partner; three elected legacy AA partners; two independent members; and a non-voting CFO. James Collis has been appointed Global Managing Partner, Brian Dunlop is the CFO and Robert Gillespie and David Turner are the Independent Board Members.

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