Herbert Smith puts spotlight on Asia by announcing new regional head

Herbert Smith has named its new Asia dispute resolution head following incumbent Mark Johnson’s promotion to Asia head.

Gavin Lewis, a partner at Herbert Smith since 2001, has been appointed head of Asia disputes. He specialises in litigation and regulatory investigations in the financial services sector and has been based in Hong King since 1998. Lewis will be responsible for developing and implementing the firm’s disputes strategy throughout the region, as well as co-ordinating the practice with other regions.

His appointment comes after Herbert Smith this week suffered a setback in its international strategy after European alliance partners Gleiss Lutz and Stibbe rejected a merger bid (22 November 2011).

Lewis briefly left the firm to become managing director at UBS in Hong Kong between 2006 and 2008 (21 November 2005), when he led the bank’s litigation and regulatory function in Asia Pacific.

His appointment follows the ascendancy of former Asia disputes head Mark Johnson, who was named head of Asia in September replacing Ashley Alder, who left to become CEO of HongKong’s Securities and Futures Commission on 1 October (1 September 2011).

Herbert Smith has 18 partners and around 80 associates in its Asia disputes team, spread around offices in Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, China, Singapore and Thailand.