Herbert Smith Freehills has further strengthened its arbitration offering in Europe with the hire of new Madrid Partner David Arias, who will join the firm with a team of four.

The new team will join the firm’s Madrid office on 7 May, 2019, from disputes boutique Arias SLP, which was founded by David in 2014. Prior to founding Arias, David Arias spent 16 years as a partner at Pérez-Llorca, where he established its dispute resolution practice.

A Professor in Procedural Law and Arbitration from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, David is very active and well-known in the international arbitration community, both in Spain and beyond.  He is ranked in Tier 1 in Disputes and Arbitration by the leading legal directories – Chambers and Legal 500 – and was chair of the IBA’s (International Bar Association) Arbitration Committee between 2016 and 2017, as well as the president of the Spanish Arbitration Club between 2013 and 2017; he is currently the honorary president of the Spanish Arbitration Club.

He has served as arbitrator and counsel in hundreds of cases in venues across Europe, America and Africa, and he regularly participates in proceedings administered by the main arbitration institutions such as the ICC, PCA, LCIA, ICDR and SCC, among others.  He also has extensive experience acting as counsel in complex commercial litigation matters.

David will join Herbert Smith Freehills alongside current Arias partner Luis Capiel, who will join the firm as Of Counsel.  Luis joined Arias SLP in 2018 and has over 10 years’ experience practicing international arbitration in Europe and Latin America.

He has carved out a successful practice, focusing on complex commercial and construction disputes related to cross-border commercial agreements, joint ventures and M&A transactions in the engineering and construction, banking and finance, insurance, private equity, electricity, and oil & gas sectors. A German qualified lawyer, Luis is also admitted to the Madrid and the Munich Bars.

David and Luis will be joined with the rest of the Arias team: associates Oliver Cojo, Diego Alexandre-García and Svetlana Shelepina.

This team will be incorporated into Herbert Smith Freehills’ Madrid disputes practice, which is led by Partner Eduardo Soler-Tappa who focuses on international arbitration and other international disputes, primarily in the energy and banking sectors.

Commenting on his new appointment, David Arias said: “The entire Arias SLP team is very excited to join a firm as prestigious as Herbert Smith Freehills. It has very quickly become a go-to firm for business law in the Spanish market and is also ranked as the world’s No. 1 firm for disputes and arbitration. We are now part of an ambitious and exciting project, which will allow us to better tackle the challenges ahead and offer a broader and more comprehensive service to our clients.”

Head of the Global Arbitration Practice, Paula Hodges QC added; ” David and his team have a very strong reputation in the Spanish market and David himself has a stellar reputation in Latin America. Their hire demonstrates our commitment to the continued growth of our arbitration practice across Europe and globally.  I am delighted to welcome the new team to the firm.”