Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson has nabbed Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer senior partner Ashar Qureshi to fill a leadership role in the firm’s London office.
Qureshi, a corporate and capital markets attorney, joins the U.S. firm as head of its Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) transactions practice after four years as a partner at Freshfields.
Qureshi was previously a U.S. corporate partner at Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, which he joined in 1998, and then joined Moscow-based Renaissance Group in 2010, taking up a role as executive vice chairman and CEO of Renaissance Asset Managers.
U.S.-qualified Qureshi then joined Freshfields’ London corporate team in 2014. His clients include governments, corporations and major financial institutions across a wide range of industries and jurisdictions.
During his time at Cleary he advised HSBC on its record-breaking £12.5 billion ($16.4 billion) rights issue in 2009, while earlier this year he was part of a Freshfields team that acted for U.K. Government Investments Limited, the body which advises the government on corporate finance and corporate governance investments, on the £2.5 billion ($3.3 billion) sale of a 7.7 percent stake in the Royal Bank of Scotland.
In a 2009 interview with ALM’s London-based publication Legal Week, Qureshi said the most memorable deal he had ever worked on was the privatization of Mexican telecom company Telmex, on which he was “flung into the deep end” as a junior associate in Cleary’s New York office in the early 1990s.
He is the latest in a line of heavyweight partner departures from Freshfields. High-yield star Ward McKimm left to rejoin Shearman & Sterling earlier this year, while earlier this month litigation partner Reza Mohtashami QC quit for litigation boutique Three Crowns in a move that will reunite him with several of his former colleagues from Freshfields.
“Ash is highly regarded in the legal community as one of the leading U.S. securities and transactional lawyers, and his addition will help further strengthen our global transaction offerings to clients,” said Mark Mifsud, managing partner of Fried Frank’s London office.
His arrival follows the departure of Fried Frank finance head Stuart Brinkworth to Mayer Brown earlier this year.
Freshfields said of Qureshi’s departure: “We thank Ash for his contribution to the firm and wish him well for the next phase of his career.”
For more, see: