Ashurst raids O’Melveny & Myers and White & Case to bolster Asia practice

Ashurst has taken a trio of partners from O’Melveny & Myers and one from White & Case in a bid to boost its restructuring offering in Asia.

It also hired White & Case’s Asia high yield chief and debt capital markets partner Anne-Marie Slot, in a drive to bulk up its high yield capability in the region. Slot will be based in Ashurst’s Hong Kong office.

Slot will work alongside another recent Ashurst hire, capital markets partner Nigel Pridmore, who resurfaced at the firm’s Hong Kong office in July having quit Linklaters four months earlier (14 July 2014).

Ashurst has also added strength to its Hong Kong finance team by relocating a pair of City partners to the region. Banking partner Doos Choi moved to Hong Kong earlier this year, and will be joined by finance partner Chris Tang before the end of August.

The O’Melveny team to switch to Ashurst includes finance and restructuring partner Bertie Mehigan, who is lined up to relocate to Hong Kong from his current base in Singapore. He will be joined by English and New York-qualified Joel Hogarth, who specialises in M&A and private equity with experience in restructuring in Indonesia.

Hogarth will be located in Ashurst’s associated office in Jakarta, local Indonesian firm Oentoeng Suria & Partners (OSP). In addition to becoming part of Ashurst’s partnership, he will take up the mantle of senior foreign legal consultant with OSP.

O’Melveny counsel Ipop Nawangsari will relocate from Singapore to Jakarta, where she will be promoted to partner at both Ashurst and OSP. Finally, consultant Debby Sulaiman will become a dispute resolution, bankruptcy and restructuring senior consultant in OSP’s Jakarta office.

OSP was launched in 2010 by commercial firm Soebagjo Jatim Djarot in close collaboration with legacy Blake Dawson. Ashurst took on the association when it financially merged with the Australian firm in November 2013, continuing a relationship which has existed for more than 20 years (26 September 2013).

OSP’s new additions will almost double the tally of legal advisers at its Jakarta base from four to seven.

O’Melveny has witnessed the exit of a number of lawyers in 2014, including Hong Kong partner Mark Fairbairn who became DLA Piper’s Asia restructuring head. Fairbairn was joined by counsel in the firm’s Singapore restructuring team, Ashley Bell, who also jumped ship for DLA in January 2014 (24 January 2014).