Rees resurfaces at Thirty Nine Essex Street

Alfred Hitchcock would be proud of this mystery. Two months ago Shell legal director Peter Rees QC abruptly left the oil giant , just three years after joining the company and barely weeks after outlining his extensive plans for reshaping the company’s in-house team.

In November, in an extensive interview with The Lawyer, Rees was brimming with confidence about his plans for reshaping the in-house team. In particular those plans included ramping up the role of in-house litigators at Shell.

But weeks later Rees was history. His sudden and unexplained departure, revealed exclusively by The Lawyer, sent shockwaves through the energy sector specifically and the legal market more generally.

An email announcement dated 10 January from Shell’s chief executive Ben Van Beurden, who only took the top job on 1 January, said that Rees’s tenure had ceased with immediate effect. No reason was given.

Now Rees has taken steps to start over, having confirmed that he is joining Thirty Nine Essex Street . It is one of the largest civil sets in London, having swallowed the bulk of 4 – 5 Gray’s Inn in 2012. Its large membership hit average revenue per barrister (RPB) last year at £416,000 , the second-lowest RPB in the top ten London stats.

Let’s hope he has the energy for a fresh start.

Let’s hope he has the energy for a fresh start.

Also on The Lawyer:

Featured Briefings
Litigation: Mourant Ozannes: Appeals from the Royal Court of Guernsey: when does time start to run?
Pensions: Nabarro: Budget 2014: immediate changes for pension schemes
Tax: Mourant Ozannes: Tax information exchange agreements in Jersey
Company: Datacert: Passport GRC Third-Party Risk Management module
Charities: Withers: Catholic adoption agency permitted to keep charity status