Freshfields names new real estate chief as group absorbs part of closing leisure practice

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has shut its leisure sector group and merged its subsidiary parts into real estate and TMT.

Holidays, fitness, hotels and pubs, previously sub-sectors within leisure, have been absorbed by real estate, while gaming and sports have been taken over by the media division of TMT.

The leisure group was run for two terms, or roughly ten years, by City corporate partner Chris Mort, who will return to full-time fee-earning.

The adjustments, effective immediately, come at the same time as a personnel change that sees London partner Mark Wheelhouse replace Hamburg-based Johannes Conradi as head of the real estate sector team.

Conradi was last year appointed global head of the real estate practice group, a separate department (5 April 2012).

The firm operates separate practice groups and sector groups with distinct leaders.

Wheelhouse said in a statement: “The new constitution of the real estate sector group, bringing together the real estate and hospitality teams, recognises obvious shared synergies and is a logical move for the firm. Both Johannes and Chris are hard acts to follow but I’m looking forward to building on the work that they’ve done, and making a success of the changes we’re implementing.”