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Global Arbitration Review (GAR) has unveiled its annual ranking of the world’s leading international arbitration practices, with Herbert Smith Freehills ranked fifth in the world.

The firm's GAR 30 ranking appears in the 16th Edition of the GAR 100, which was revealed last week at the annual GAR Awards ceremony at the InterContinental hotel in Paris.

The GAR ranking reveals that the firm's portfolio as counsel amassed US101.2 billion, nearly double its portfolio value in 2018, and includes 4 cases with a claim value of over $5 billion, 9 cases with a claim value of between $1-5 billion and a further 14 cases with a claim value of over $250 million.

In the firm's GAR100 profile, GAR describes the firm's commercial arbitration group as "formidable", and it is also "well regarded for public international law and investment treaty arbitration, advising governments in state-to-state negotiations and boundary disputes".

In feedback from clients included in the GAR survey, the firm is described as "responsive, provide practical and useful guidance and advice, and are excellent advocates" and is praised for its “client-oriented approach”.

The prestigious GAR 30 is based on a thorough quantitative analysis, ranking firms according to a number of different factors including the number of arbitral hearings conducted by a firm over a two-year period. The research considers merits and jurisdictional hearings, the amount in dispute in those cases and the number of hours billed to arbitration over that period. The number of high value matters settled during the window and the portfolio value of a firm's active arbitration caseload is also taken into account.

Rankings are also based on the number of arbitrator appointments a firm’s members have received and the number of individuals who appear in GAR’s sister publication, Who’s Who Legal: Arbitration – a guide to the leading practitioners in the field as selected by their peers.

The launch of the Business and Human Rights Lawyers Association (BHRLA), on which Hong Kong-based Partner Antony Crockett worked, was also shortlisted for the Best Development Award at this year's Awards.

Alongside the unveiling of the firm's ranking at the GAR Awards ceremony in Paris, the firm's CEO and international arbitration partner Justin D'Agostino, in his role as co-chair of the Arbitration Pledge (the Pledge) Global Steering Committee, presented the 2023 GAR Equal Representation in Arbitration Pledge Award to winner Mute Off Thursdays for its Compendium of Women Arbitrators.

The full GAR 30 can be found here.

Paula Hodges KC, Head of Herbert Smith Freehills' Global Arbitration Practice, commented: "This is Herbert Smith Freehills' tenth year of being ranked in the top 10 busiest arbitration practices in the world. We can only be ranked so consistently because our clients trust us to manage so many of their high profile and high value disputes. This is wonderful and deserving recognition for our global practice, and a testament to the whole team."

The rankings come at an exciting time for the practice, with the hire of arbitration specialist Anuradha Agnihotri as Of Counsel (India) in London to strengthen the firm’s India disputes practice and the appointment of Partner, Mike McClure as King's Counsel (KC) of England and Wales, the fourth KC currently practising at Herbert Smith Freehills.

For more information, please contact Paula Hodges KC, Partner and Vanessa Naish, Professional Support Consultant, or your usual Herbert Smith Freehills contact.

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