Herbert Smith Freehills names new global management team

Herbert Smith and Australian merger partner Freehills have outlined the new global management structure for the combined firm, naming a 13-strong global executive.

Herbert Smith managing partner David Willis and Freehills managing partner Gavin Bell will become joint chief executives of the merged firm when the deal goes live on 1 October (subject to regulatory approval) and will lead the management team.

They will be joined by Herbert Smith’s CIS managing partner Allen Hanen, who will become EMEA managing partner at Herbert Smith Freehills, Asia managing partner Mark Johnson, who will hold the same position at the merged firm, UK managing partner Ian Cox and Freehills’ Jason Ricketts as Australia managing partner.

The regional heads join four global practice heads on the executive: Herbert Smith’s Sonya Leydecker as head of disputes, Freehills’ Mike Ferraro and Herbert Smith’s Patrick Mitchell as joint corporate heads and Freehills’ Patrick St John, who heads the combined finance, real estate and projects practice.

Freehills’ Sydney-based managing partner becomes industries and clients managing partner, sitting on the executive alongside joint chief operating officers Janet Young (Freehills) and David Robinson (Herbert Smith).

The firms also announced that Herbert Smith’s employment, pensions and incentives practice will merge with Freehills’ employment relations practice to form a global group, headed by Freehills partner Graeme Smith. Meanwhile James Quinney and Paul Hughes will co-chair a global competition, regulation and trade group.

As previously reported, Herbert Smith senior partner Jonathan Scott will be senior partner of the combined firm, with Freehills chairman Mark Crean becoming deputy senior partner.

Herbert Smith and Freehills partners approved their full-equity merger at the end of last month, with the combined firm set to have 2,800 lawyers, including 460 partners in 20 offices worldwide. It will operate a single profit pool from day one however each firm will operate with a separate remuneration structure for the time being.

The combined entity will boast a turnover of about £800m based on Herbert Smith’s 2011-12 turnover and Freehills’ 2011 income.