Simon Bromwich has been in his post at Ashurst for exactly a year. The City firm ousted its managing partner Justin Spendlove early last January following the failed merger attempt with Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson.
Spendlove stormed off to former beau Fried Frank and Bromwich came in on a mandate to cut costs and improve profits.
Bromwich has certainly delivered on the cost-cutting front. Ashurst runs a much tighter ship these days and partners have even been deprived of their free copies of the Evening Standard.
More importantly he cut underperforming partners, and the firm has made a concerted effort to get its leverage right across all its practice areas, resulting in a number of assistant cuts, which have quickly fed through to the bottom line.
Undoubtedly, there have been problems along the way, and the loss of top Paris rainmaker Thomas Forsbach was a heavy blow. But all in all, Ashurst looks like a much healthier ship than it did a year ago – and Bromwich must take much of the credit.