Holman Fenwick bolsters Asia team in wake of Aussie expansion

Holman Fenwick & Willan (HFW) has announced a series of partner moves aimed at enhancing its Asia Pacific practice, following the opening of its Perth office.

Shanghai-based partner Paul Aston will relocate to Singapore to head the office, succeeding partner Simon Davidson, who will return to full-time practice after 12 years at the helm.

He will be joined in the Singapore office by international arbitration specialist Guy Hardaker, who will relocate from the firm’s London office.

Aston led the Singapore office when it first opened in 1991, but joined the Shanghai base in 2008 as office head.

In Shanghai Aston will be succeeded by partner Henry Fung, who will continue to split his time between Hong Kong and Shanghai.

In Hong Kong the firm has also appointed former Simmons & Simmons corporate  partner Jonathan Moult, who will join the firm in September.

Another partner has been appointed in the firm’s Sydney office with former Richards Butler Hong Kong partner David Coogans, a marine lawyer,  joining the firm.

HFW Asia Pacific managing partner Paul Hatzer said: “Recent partner promotions and a new office in Perth demonstrate the firm’s desire to provide clients with the experience and capability they need from legal advisors in the markets in which they operate. These further developments are in response to the growth we continue to see across the region and are in direct response to client needs.”

Despite losing a team of six lawyers including partner Alistair Duffield to rival Berwin Leighton Paisner in Singapore in November last year (15 November 2010), HFW has seen global revenues increase in the last year.

The firm announced a 13 per cent turnover increase to £112.5m for the 2010-11 financial year.

HFW said the increase, up from £99.6m last year, was largely due to the strength of its international offices. Offices outside London now account for 45 per cent of the firm’s global turnover (4 May 2011).