Norton Rose Fulbright switches Indonesian association

Norton Rose Fulbright has entered into a new association in Indonesia with TNB & Partners, a firm set up by the majority of the team from its previous ally Susandarini & Partners.

The firm’s relationship with Susandarini & Partners started in 2011, when Norton Rose Australia ended its previous tie-up with Brigitta Rahoyoe & Partners.

TNB & Partners was established by and named after the three founding partners Benny Bernarto, Tasdikiah Siregar and Nadia Soraya. All were previously partners at Susandarini and are Indonesian-qualified lawyers. The new association became effective at the beginning of this month.

The three partners were recruited by Norton Rose Fulbright in recent years. Siregar joined Susandarini from Makarim & Taira in 2012 and has been head of Norton Rose Fulbright’s Indonesian banking and finance practice. Soraya, also a banking partner, joined in May 2015 from MD & Partners, White & Case’s previous Indonesian association firm. Bernarto was previously a corporate partner of Makarim and joined in April 2015.

According to Norton Rose Fulbright’s South East Asia head Jeff Smith, the new firm consists of 90 per cent of Susandarini’s team – nine lawyers including the three partners. It is understood that employment-focused name partner Susandarini is the firm’s sole partner after the split.

“We have refreshed our Indonesian association firm to reflect the new partners we’ve hired in recent years,” said Smith.

“Despite the Indonesian market has been through some difficult times, its still the biggest market for us, from arbitration in Singapore to new power projects being development and investment in the technology, media and telecom sectors,” he added.

Keeping a long-term relationship with Indonesian association firms has proven to be difficult amongst international firms. The market is changing rapidly while partners and lawyers are understood to be moving from firms to firms frequently.

In recent months, Hogan Lovells terminated its three-year association with Jakarta-based Hermawan Juniarto and is seeking another arrangement, while White & Case changed its association firm for the third time, moving from MD & Partners to Witara Cakra Advocates.