Herbert Smith Freehills names new China chief

Herbert Smith Freehills (HSF) has named Hong Kong-based Julian Copeman as Greater China managing partner, a month after predecessor Justin D’Agostino’s appointment to global disputes head.

Copeman is a senior commercial litigator and a solicitor-advocate in the English courts. He relocated from London to Hong Kong in April (14 April 2014) following an initial six-month secondment. His relocation pushes up the firm’s total number of dispute partners in Asia to 22.

During his time in London, he acted on a number of high profile cases, including advising British Sky Broadcasting Group on its successful claim against IT contractor EDS in 2010.

“Julian’s position reflects the strategic significance of Greater China in the firm’s global business plan,” said Mark Johnson, HSF’s Asia managing partner.

Meanwhile, the firm has formally named partners to the roles of office managing partner for Beijing and Shanghai for the first time. The Beijing office will be led by corporate partner Tom Chau and litigation partner Brenda Horrigan, who joined the firm from legacy Salans in 2012 (10 February 2012), will take on the local management role in Shanghai.

HSF currently has 27 partners and 100 other fee-earners in Greater China. However, it has seen a number of partner departures over the past year, including Hong Kong finance regulatory partner Tim Mak who joined Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (22 April 2013), former Asia disputes head Gavin Lewis to Linklaters (3 September 2013), and Shanghai M&A partner Betty Tam to Mayer Brown JSM (12 September 2013).