Legal Week Reports AAR Down To One Lawyer In Singapre Office

Here’s the Legal Week Story in its entirety…  all a bit of a downhill slide it seems….
Linklaters’ alliance partner Allens Arthur Robinson has just one lawyer in its Singapore office after the recent departure of partner Marae Ciantar and lawyer Mostyn Taylor.
The Australian outfit, which allied with the magic circle firm in May last year and has since moved into their offices on George Street in the city-state, has seen the departure of 11 lawyers and four partners in the region since the beginning of 2012.
Partners to have exited the Singapore base include disputes lawyer Matthew Skinner and energy expert Darren Murphy, both of whom joined Jones Day in October 2012.
These departures were followed by those of banking and finance partner Rod Howell, who joined Herbert Smith Freehills in February this year, and energy and resources specialist Marae Ciantar, who left recently.
Eleven lawyers have also exited the office during the period, some of whom have moved to Allens offices in Australia whilst the rest have taken positions at new firms or in-house roles at companies.
Among them are senior associate Jeremy Chase and associate John Rainbird, who also moved to Jones Day in Singapore, senior associate Steve Potter, who joined Jones Day as Of Counsel in Sydney, senior associate Christopher Tan, who took a counsel role at K&L Gates in Singapore, senior associate Ian Stewart, who joined Clyde & Co in the city-state as a partner, and lawyer Mostyn Taylor, who left in September for another venture.
Those leaving the firm for in-house roles include senior associate Theresa Tayabali, who went work as ASEAN regional counsel at NS BlueScope Coated Products, and Shaun Yeo, who joined Rio Tinto in Sydney as corporate counsel.
A further three lawyers were relocated to the firm’s Australian offices last October, including senior associate Emma Baxter, who moved to the Perth base, lawyer Judith Hammerschlag, who exited for Sydney, and lawyer Ainsley Reid, who joined the team in Melbourne.
One of Australia’s ‘big six’ law firms, Allens is understood to have been consolidating its Asia offering in view of the tie up with Linklaters, with the two firms focusing on areas where they each have strengths.
Since 2011, Allens has closed offices in Cambodia and Shanghai and ended its alliance with Thai firm Siam Premier, whilst in Beijing and Singapore lawyers have moved into or next to Linklaters’ offices as part of a co-location exercise.
Its five remaining offices are located in Mongolia, Vietnam, Hong Kong and Indonesia – the latter through a tie up with Widyawan & Partners.
In Hong Kong the firm will also move in with Linklaters, though a timeframe is yet to be given. It currently has two partners in that office: David Wenger and Nic Tole, alongside five lawyers.
In a statement, the firm said: “As part of [the Linklaters] alliance, the two firms agreed to enter into a process of co-locating in some of the locations in Asia in which both firms had an office.
“Singapore is one such location and co-location has taken place there. Allens has a senior associate and support staff in that office, which is also used regularly by Allens partners working on matters in the region.
“The Asia strategy remains what it has been for the past 30 or so years – to continue to provide outstanding legal services to our clients in Asia through our network of offices that ranges from Papua New Guinea to Mongolia, with an extra focus now on the ERI sectors through our JV with Linklaters and on Indonesia through our JV with Widyawan & Partners and Linklaters.”