Ashurst launches risk & compliance consulting arm

01 April 2020 3 min. read

Global law firm Ashurst has launched a consulting arm in Australia, aimed at supporting clients with the sea of risk that has emerged in the thick of the Covid-19 crisis. The firm has appointed former Deloitte partner Philip Hardy to head up the division.

The consulting arm will offer a variety of advisory services, not only in regulatory compliance and risk management but also extending to change management and business performance enhancement.

For now, the firm has launched the risk-focused division to manage the imminent crisis, with an initial focus on the financial services sector.

Practice leader Hardy joins from Big Four accounting and advisory firm Deloitte, where he has worked for more than a decade. Since joining in 2008, he has held a variety of senior positions in Deloitte Australia’s Assurance & Advisory practice, include Chief Operating Officer, National Advisory Leader and Chief Operating & Strategy Officer, among others.

Ashurst launches risk & compliance consulting arm

Most recently, Hardy headed Deloitte's Conduct proposition, a position that he now vacates to take Ashurst’s risk advisory practice forward.

Paul Jenkins, Global Managing Partner at Ashurst, welcomed the senior hire and expressed his faith in his capabilities to lead the new division. “His experience looking after businesses during the global financial crisis and in the aftermath will be an asset to the global firm and our partners, who will be advising our clients through the multitude of effects Covid-19 is having on their businesses.”

Covid-19’s impact on economy and business is unprecedented, and those who have attempted to quantify it place the damage in billions of dollars. Experts have highlighted how risk management and advisory services will be of particular significance in this period, as businesses look to ride the wave.

Ashurst is a global law firm operating in 16 countries across the world, now looking to leverage its regulatory expertise to capitalise on the growing demand for risk advisory services in Australia. The firm already looked to be making inroads in the consulting sector, having launched a board advisory services practice on March 1st.

The new consulting arm not only represents inroads into the market by Ashurst, but the legal services sector in general. In February this year, Australian law firm Lander & Rogers also launched a management consulting practice for in-house lawyers in Australia.

In an open letter to clients and stakeholders earlier this month, Jenkins offered reassurance of the firm’s commitment to put its people first. “We are committed to helping you minimise disruption, and to assist you as you navigate the immediate and longer term implications for your business. Our teams across the globe are fully operational and equipped to work remotely to assist you,” he wrote.