LAWFUEL – The Law Firm Newswire – International law firm Freshfields…

LAWFUEL – The Law Firm Newswire – International law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has appointed Jean-François Gerard to the newly created role of international practice development lawyer in the firm’s employment, pensions and benefits (EPB) group. Jean-François will be based in the firm’s Brussels office, focusing on further raising the profile of the EPB group through business development and client relationship management across the firm’s international network of offices.

Jean-François joins the firm from ius laboris, an international alliance of leading law firms providing specialised services in employment law, where he was managing director and instrumental in developing and managing the alliance.

Commenting on Jean-François’s appointment, deputy global head of the EPB group at Freshfields, Nick Squire, said: ‘We are delighted to have Jean-François joining the team in this unique role. As the demand for cross-border services continues to grow, Jean-François’s unique experience means he will play a key role in the strategic development of our international capabilities. We believe he is ideally placed to help the group cement its position as a truly integrated international employment, pensions and benefits practice.’

Jean-François, 41, began his career as an employment lawyer at Benelux firm Loeff Claeys Verbeke, focusing on business restructuring. He then worked for several years as a researcher at the ULB University in Brussels.

Since 2000, Jean-François has been managing director of Ius Laboris, an international alliance of 44 leading law firms providing specialised services in employment and labour law, pensions and employee benefits. He was recruited prior to the initial launch and helped the Alliance to expand from 5 continental European firms in January 2001 to 44 European and American firms today. Jean-François sat on both the board and the executive committee, where he played an active role in formulating the Alliance’s strategy.

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