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PARTNER MOVES - Freshfields appoints Alastair Mordaunt as head of Hong Kong competition practice

14 Mar 2016

International law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has made a landmark addition to its Asia competition practice with the election of Alastair Mordaunt to the firm’s partnership.

Mr Mordaunt, a competition expert with more than 15 years of regulator and private practice experience, will be based in Hong Kong where he will become head of the firm’s competition practice in that jurisdiction.

During his career, he has acted on both sides of investigations and merger filings, including five years at the UK’s Office of Fair Trading, originally as Director of its Mergers Group and then Director of a dedicated competition enforcement team.

Commenting on the appointment, Asia Managing Partner Robert Ashworth said that Mr Mordaunt’s expertise would prove to be unique in the Hong Kong market.

‘Alastair’s background as a regulator combined with our distinctive competition litigation expertise in Hong Kong will provide a compelling offering to local and international clients doing business in Hong Kong, where enforcement will take place largely through a contentious tribunal system,’ Mr Ashworth said.

‘In Alastair, clients will have access to one of the rising stars of global competition law, and a real asset to Hong Kong’s legal community.’
David Broomhall, global co-head of the firm’s antitrust, competition and trade practice, said that Alastair’s return to Freshfields was another step forward for the firm’s formidable Asia competition practice.

‘We have long been proud of our ability to deliver world-class competition advice throughout Asia, based in large part on extremely strong local teams in Hong Kong, mainland China and Tokyo,’ Mr Broomhall said.

‘Alastair is a market leading antitrust lawyer whose commercial acumen and experience as a senior regulator will further strengthen the team.’
Martin Klusmann, global co-head of the firm’s antitrust, competition and trade practice, welcomed Alastair’s return.

‘His appointment is also something of a homecoming, with Alastair having spent the first eight years of his legal career with Freshfields in London, Brussels and Washington DC.’

Mr Mordaunt said he was relishing the challenge of heading up the firm’s Hong Kong competition practice.

‘In terms of the global regulatory environment in competition and antitrust, Hong Kong is a very exciting place to be,’ Mr Mordaunt said.

‘Very rarely do companies have to come to grips with an entirely new regime in such a sophisticated market. In that sense, the Hong Kong competition regime poses some unique challenges for companies doing business in the jurisdiction.

‘I look forward to working with clients as they manage the transition to the new environment and playing an active part in the development of the firm’s broader antitrust practice in Asia.

'I am grateful to my colleagues at my previous firm for five successful and happy years. Looking ahead, it's exciting to return to Freshfields where I started my career, and to work alongside old friends and colleagues once again,’ Mr Mordaunt said.