International firm Herbert Smith Freehills is set to just fall short of a gender diversity target set five years ago which sought to increase the number of women partners.

The firm’s latest promotion round has resulted in 22 lawyers being made partner, of whom eight are women.

In 2014, the firm said it wanted 30% of its global partnership to be female by 2019. After the latest promotion round, effective 1 May, the partnership is set to be 26% female.

A spokesperson for the firm acknowledged the target had not been met but noted that representation of women in the partnership had increased by 53% since 2014 (81 to 124) and that the firm was still working to achieve the goal.

The latest promotions span 13 offices. Four new partners are in London, six are in Asia and six in Australia.

Mark Rigotti, chief executive, said: ‘These new partners are outstanding lawyers and have built deep relationships with clients, developed a wealth of expertise, and demonstrated a real understanding of our firm values and culture. Their diverse skills and experiences will further enhance the strength of our global network.’