Ashurst unveils post-merger board appointments

Ashurst partners have voted for a raft of new board members, as the firm continues its push towards post-merger integration.

Tidswell Ben Ashurst

The firm’s new 14-member board consists of partners from both Ashurst LLP and former Ashurst Australia.

The board’s four elected legacy Ashurst LLP partners include new faces London-based corporate partner Simon Beddow and City banking partner Mark Vickers. The pair will join former Ashurst board members Cristina Calvo in Madrid and and Reinhard Eyring in Frankfurt, real estate and corporate partners respectively.

The board’s three elected Ashurst Australia members are Perth-based partner Roger Davies and former Ashurst Australia board member Ian Williams in Sydney. Both are partners in the firm’s corporate practice. They are joined by Sydney-based competition partner Peter Armitage, who ran for the chairman role against former senior partner Charlie Geffen and the ultimate victor Ben Tidswell (24 September 2013).

Corporate partner Robert Ogilvy-Watson in Hong Kong is the board’s elected Asia member.

Its two independent board members are Robert Gillespie and David Turner. Former Takeover Panel director general and ex-UBS banker Robert Gillespie joined the firm in May, while Commonwealth Bank of Australia chairman David Turner took up the position in June.

The pair were first appointed to Ashurst and Ashurst Australia’s boards last year, and were expected to attend board meetings and contribute about 30 days’ work a year. The board’s non-voting CFO is Brian Dunlop, who joined Ashurst from Allen & Overy last April (29 May 2013).

The board also comprises Tidswell, recently elected vice chair Mary Padbury, managing partner James Collis.

A number of former Ashurst board members missed out on a place. Those left out from the line-up include former senior partner Charlie Geffen, Asia managing partner Matthew Bubb, London-based corporate partner Anthony Clare and energy, transport and infrastructure partner Logan Mair.

On the Ashurst Australia side, Australian managing partner John Carrington, Melbourne-based corporate partner Elspeth Arnold, energy and resources partner Tony Denholder in Brisbane, Australia’s ECM head Sarah Dulhunty and Sydney-based banking and finance partner Paul Jenkins missed out on spots on the new board.

London-based Mair and Denholder in Brisbane have instead been installed as the firm’s new client partners, responsible for the development and implementation of Ashurst’s global client strategy.

Tidswell said in a statement: “Our new board is a key element in our governance structure and I am delighted to welcome such a strong team from across the new firm to this important role. I would like to congratulate them all and I am confident that they will each make a significant contribution in shaping the firm’s future.”

The vote is thought to be the last of many in recent months at Ashurst. Partners voted in favour of full financial integration with Ashurst Australia in September (26 September 2013), for the combined firm’s new chairman Ben Tidswell in October (16 October 2013), and for its vice chairman Mary Padbury days later (18 October 2013).

The new board took effect on 1 November 2013.