Ashurst appoints first Australia-based managing partner
Sydney-based banking partner Paul Jenkins is to become the managing partner of Ashurst; the first time the firm has been headed by an Australian-based partner. Jenkins joined legacy firm Blake Dawson twenty years ago but was soon on the move to Clifford Chance and Freshfields before rejoining Blake Dawson where he made partner in 2006. Ashurst and Blake Dawson merged in 2012. Jenkins is currently the co-head of the international firm’s finance practice.
The firm has also announced two new partner hires from King & Wood Mallesons. They include the head of the firm’s London-based Asia desk, Darren Rogers; and real estate partner Patrick Williams.
Chinese firms to merge
Beijing’s Guantao Law Firm and Zhongmao Law Firm of Shanghai have announced that they are to merge. It follows a five-year alliance between the firms which will simply renamed as Guantao Zhongmao Law Firm. The combination will have around 500 lawyers and will operate across 14 offices.
Google under fire in European antitrust lawsuit
Google is facing a new lawsuit over its operations in the European Union. The European Commission says that Google abuses its position by imposing restrictions on smartphone and tablet manufacturers which require prominence for Google’s suite of apps. The apps must appear on or one-swipe from, the home screen and cannot be deleted. Google faces a large fine and operational changes if the EC wins the case.
China wanted Apple source code but was rejected
The general counsel of Apple says that the company was asked to hand over its source code by Chinese authorities within the last two years but refused. Reuters reports that the firm was responding to an investigation by US officials that alleges that Apple has complied with China’s requests while refusing to do so for US authorities. GC Bruce Sewell swore under oath on Tuesday that: "I want to be very clear on this, we have not provided source code to the Chinese government."