Macfarlanes hires KWM competition team including former senior partner Kon


King & Wood Mallesons’  (KWM) former European senior partner Stephen Kon is to join Macfarlanes along with three other partners from the stricken business.

He will join Macfarlanes as a consultant alongside fellow KWM partners Tom Usher, Cameron Firth and Christophe Humpe, who currently splits his time between London and Brussels.

All four will join in the New Year, with Usher, Firth and Humpe joining as partners.

Kon resigned from KWM earlier this year after stepping down from the Europe and Middle East leadership role in September. He is understood to have informed the firm he would be retiring from legal practice.

Macfarlanes senior partner Charles Martin said: “This is an exciting opportunity for the firm and our clients. The wealth of experience and proven track records of Stephen, Tom, Cameron and Christophe will allow us to strengthen and enhance our competition practice considerably, and we look forward to welcoming them to the firm.”

The hires come as Covington & Burling has finalised the hire of two partners from KWM.

Global head of litigation Craig Pollack and disputes partner Louise Freeman will reunite with several other former KWM partners at the US firm.

Legacy SJ Berwin’s former head of litigation Alex Leitch joined the US firm’s London office in March 2015, as co-head of its European dispute resolution practice.

Earlier this year, Covington returned to KWM to hire litigation partners Greg Lascelles and Elaine Whiteford.

Leitch and fellow European dispute resolution practice co-chair Jeremy Wilson commented: “We are very excited that Craig and Louise will be joining us in London, as they are top-notch disputes lawyers who will be terrific colleagues.

“The firm’s growing footprint in London is a reflection of client demand, which is fuelled by the increasingly challenging regulatory and compliance environment, and the fact that London is, and will continue to be, a leading venue for international dispute resolution.”