Fried Frank London in fresh raid on Ashurst

Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson has swooped on its one-time merger prospect Ashurst once more, securing the hire of London M&A and securities partner Edward Kim.

Kim has been a partner in Ashurst’s London office since 2003, when he moved across from Dewey Ballantine to become Ashurst’s first dedicated US-qualified partner in London.

Fried Frank has made somewhat of a habit of recruiting from Ashurst to bolster its London presence since the two firms’ transatlantic merger talks disintergrated in 2003.

The US firm has since hired a swathe of lawyers from its rival, including the hire of former Ashurst managing partner Justin Spendlove, now managing partner at Fried Frank, in 2004.

Later that year, Fried Frank also poached a six-lawyer team from Ashurst in London, including capital markets partner Sian Withey.

Spendlove said Kim’s hire was in response to the increasing demand for dual US and European capability following the increasing convergence of the US and European M&A markets.

Kim specialises in both public and private US and non-US M&A transactions, corporate restructurings, public offerings, private placements and joint ventures.

Over the last 18 months Fried Frank has expanded its European practice to more than 80 lawyers, including the promotion of two lawyers to the partnership in London in August.