Top firm nabs M&A partners from two rivals

Ashurst’s Melbourne office welcomes new partners from Clayton Utz and Herbert Smith Freehills

Top firm nabs M&A partners from two rivals
Ashurst has bolstered its mergers and acquisitions team with two new lateral hires from Clayton Utz and Herbert Smith Freehills. John Brewster and Shane Kyriakou both officially joined Ashurst’s Melbourne office yesterday as partners.

Brewster, a corporate law and M&A specialist, has acted on several notable transactions for local and foreign companies and major investment banks in the Australian market. Last year, he led the Clayton Utz team that advised on the purchase of 95% of Indonesia’s Martable Mine for US$775m by a consortium comprised of EMR Capital, Farallon Capital, and partners. He also led the team that advised SR Residential on its acquisition of the Simonds Group.

Meanwhile, Kyriakou, an English- and Australian-qualified lawyer, has more than 18 years' experience working with national and international clients on large-scale energy, mining, and infrastructure projects and M&A. One of his largest transactions while at HSF was advising Marubeni, POSCO, STX and CSC on their consortium participation in the $12bn Roy Hill iron ore mine.

Paul Jenkins, Ashurst managing partner, said that the firm is broadening and deepening its M&A team in Australia, with both new partners strengthening the Melbourne M&A practice in particular. They join Mark Stanbridge who heads the firm’s M&A group.

The firm’s Melbourne M&A team recently advised Nippon Life in its $2.4bn acquisition of MLC and ANZ on the $8.23bn sale of its Esanda portfolio to Macquarie Bank. Meanwhile, the Ashurst Sydney M&A team recently advised IFM Investors and AustralianSuper on the $16.189bn acquisition of Ausgrid and Crown Resorts on a series of agreements, which will generate $1.9bn for Crown, connected to Melco Crown Entertainment.

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