Macfarlanes has responded to the gloomy economic climate by cutting annual partner promotions to two. Last year the firm made up five associates in the debt finance, corporate tax, property and litigation groups. (27 March 2008).

This year’s new partners are Damien Crossley in corporate tax and Andrew Perkins in debt finance. Notably, there were no new M&A partners at the deal-focused firm.

Macfarlanes senior partner Charles Martin said: “Building key areas such as tax and debt finance by making outstanding lawyers partners is an essential investment in the future.”

In 2006 and 2007, the firm promoted four associates to the partnership. This year’s round means that, for the third year in a row, no women were invited to join the partnership.

Mwanwhile, Norton Rose has slashed the numbers of new partners made up in the annual promotions round by 25 per cent.

The firm promoted 12 associates this year, down from 16 in 2008. It was the second successive year that promotions have fallen, with 23 made up in 2007.

In the latest round, London won the most new partners with four, while in Hong Kong and Milan two associates were promoted. There were also new partners in Beijing, Frankfurt, Singapore and Dubai.

For the second year running, the firm invested most heavily in the banking group, which saw five promotions. Dispute resolution also had a good year with four new partners.

Norton Rose chief executive Peter Martyr said: “In the current economic environment the 12 new partner promotions reflect the continued investment in the practice internationally.”

The promotions, which are effective from 1 May, bring the total number of partners at the firm to 276.

The new Norton Rose partners are:

Cecilia Buresti (Milan):Litigation 
Nick Clayson (Dubai); Real estate 
Ruth Cowley (Hong Kong); Litigation 
Michael Godden (London); Litigation

Andrew Hedges (London);Projects

Lars Jessen (Frankfurt);Corporate finance

Tom Luckock (Beijing);Projects 
Gennaro Mazzuoccolo (Milan); Banking

Jon Perry (Hong Kong); Corporate finance
Ben Rose (Singapore); Banking
Ian Teare (London);Litigation
Charles Whitney (London); Banking