PwC Legal adds four partners in Australia

PwC Legal has boosted its Australian offering with the addition of four new partners.

Baker & McKenzie corporate partner Ashley Poke joins the firm in Melbourne, alongside Ashurst corporate partner Tiffany Barton.

TMT partner Cameron Whittfield joins the firm from Gilbert + Tolbin to head PwC’s Australian digital and technology law practice, while Corrs Chambers Westgarth private equity partner James Delesclefs has also jumped ship to the professional services firm.

The hires bring the firm’s Australia partner headcount to 12. It also has more than 60 lawyers in the country.

Last year, PwC hired former DLA Piper Asia finance and projects head Damian McNair from Gilbert + Tobin. 

In December, the accountancy firm brought on board Allen & Overy’s former China head Joseph Tse as an adviser, who left the magic circle firm earlier in the year.

At the time, PwC was also looking at launching a Hong Kong local law practice.

PwC legal services leader Tony O’Malley said: “We’ve been growing our team for 18 months and we’re building a stronger footprint in Melbourne. The time is certainly right to invest in top tier legal talent, to help serve the market’s increasing appetite for end-to-end solutions.” 

In October last year, accountancy rival EY Law tied up with Hong Kong Lin & Associates, led by Chinese-qualified partner Harry Lin. EY further expanded its Asia presence last year, obtaining a foreign law licence in Singapore.