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Next generation lawyers

  1. 1
    • Christopher Hall - Harneys
    • Vicky Lord - Harneys
    • Claire McConway - Carey Olsen
    • Joanna Russell - Maples and Calder

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Bedell Cristin’s London office serves to advise the firm’s London-based and international clients on Jersey and Guernsey legal matters. The ‘deeply impressive and highly reliableBruce Scott has extensive experience in structuring and advising on a range of investment funds, corporate and finance transactions, and has developed particular expertise advising on the listing of UK real estate investment trusts on the Channel Islands Securities Exchange. Key senior associates include Sukhvinder Chana, who provides specialist Guernsey legal advice and advises on corporate and finance transactions, including M&A, capital raising and investment funds; Amedeo Claris, who provides specialist Jersey legal advice on the establishment and restructuring of private equity, venture capital and other specialist investment funds and structures, listing of funds and debt securities, and general banking and regulatory matters; and Tom Davies, who has significant experience in acting for lenders, borrowers, sellers, purchasers and trustees in Jersey law.

At Isle of Man-based firm Cains, the London office is headed by Mike Edwards, who also leads the firm’s Asian practice; he acts on a broad range of matters, with particular expertise in corporate finance (equity and debt), general corporate transactions and asset finance, including ships, super-yachts and commercial aircraft. Representative experience includes advising sovereign wealth funds on the acquisition of a fleet of commercial aircraft; and acting for a global entertainment company on the de-listing of its shares from AIM and the listing of those shares on the New York Stock Exchange. Recent highlights for the office included the team’s Isle of Man legal advice to issuer GOHL Capital – an indirect subsidiary of Genting Berhad, the holding company of the Malaysia-based Genting Group – on a $1bn debt notes issue, which resulted in the first listing of an Isle of Man company on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. It also advised the Tangguh Production Sharing Contract Partners on the Isle of Man law aspects of the multi-sourced financing of a $12bn Tangguh liquefied natural gas plant expansion project in Indonesia. In late 2016, the firm established a new UK corporate services business, Cains Fiduciaries (UK), in London to provide a full range of UK corporate and administrative solutions, including the establishment of UK corporate entities and a registered office, and the provision of a comprehensive UK company secretarial service.

The first Channel Islands law firm to open an office in London, Carey Olsen has a strong reputation for advising global financial services companies, major banks and private equity fund managers on corporate and finance transactions, while also representing private clients and institutional clients in significant offshore disputes. It is highly rated for advising on the listing of London Stock Exchange-listed companies and advises large numbers of Guernsey and Jersey-based investment funds. A cross-jurisdictional corporate team, which included the London office, advised Cerberus Business Finance on the BVI and Guernsey elements of a fully secured and collateralised loan facility, which was to enable GVC to fund its successful $1.7bn public takeover bid for the Bwin gambling group. The ‘truly impressiveNicolas Journeaux specialises in commercial and trust litigation, including asset recovery; his practice areas include fraud and asset tracing, commercial and trade disputes, and trust and shareholder disputes, and he has represented States of Jersey Committees, foreign government bodies, heads of state, banks and trust companies, as well as private individuals. Counsel Claire McConway is recommended for cross-border public and private M&A, joint ventures, private equity, and equity capital markets transactions. On the funds side, McConway advises on the structuring, formation, running and wind-down of investment funds, and associated regulatory aspects. Key senior associates include Colin Masterton, who advises on corporate law, real estate finance and investment funds; corporate law specialist Vicky La; Imogen Payne, who is a corporate and finance expert; and Oliver Quarmby, who advises investment funds and banks on corporate and finance matters.

A very safe pair of hands with market-leading expertise’, Conyers Dill & Pearman’s ‘dedicated team has an in-depth knowledge of clients’ business and delivers a high level of service; it also consistently delivers good-quality work and advice within reasonable time frames and in line with budget expectations, and liaises effectively with the Caribbean where required’. The London team provides legal advice in respect of Bermuda, British Virgin Islands (BVI) and Cayman Islands law across a range of corporate and finance transactions. It recently advised, alongside Ashurst, China General Nuclear Power Corporation, on the successful £18bn project to build a UK nuclear power station, known as Hinkley Point C. Other highlights included acting for the facility agent and lenders on Bermuda law matters, regarding the further amendment and restatement of the Smurfit Kappa Group’s existing senior credit facilities. London office head Linda Martin is ‘technically very competent, always accessible and delivers results’; she has extensive experience in structured finance, capital markets, Islamic finance and banking transactions, as well as advising leading investment banks on their fund-linked products and derivatives and financing businesses. Together with Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP, Martin led the office’s advice to C C Land Holdings on its proposed £1.15bn purchase of The Leadenhall Building. Another highly regarded director is Anne Forbes-Harper, who specialises in investment fund structures, and has extensive experience in asset and structured finance and corporate and capital markets transactions; while counsel Sheba Raza is ‘very good at sharing her market knowledge and experience – she is unflappable and reliable, and as well as understanding the Bermuda legal issues, she has a very good understanding of both banking and insurance matters’. Raza recently advised Enstar Group, as Bermuda counsel, on a $665m revolving credit facility. Associate Veronica Strande’s practice covers all aspects of corporate and commercial law, including structured finance, Islamic finance and investment funds.

Forbes Hare’s ‘very good and effective team is proactive and delivers business-oriented advice’. The office’s contentious instructions primarily comprise heavyweight corporate, trusts and BVI and Cayman Islands-related disputes; and recent transactional highlights include acting as lead counsel on establishing a Cayman investment fund, Steyn Capital Offshore Hedge Fund, for Steyn Capital Management, a South African-based alternative investment manager. The ‘simply brilliant’ corporate and investment funds specialist Catherine Ross heads the firm’s global investment funds team and has particular expertise in hedge and private equity fund structures; she is also recommended for general corporate matters and is regularly instructed on international cross-border M&A deals, joint ventures and corporate restructurings. London litigation and insolvency head Alistair Abbott is ‘very knowledgeable and responsive and always provides sound and practical advice’; Abbott is highly rated for large-scale, multi-jurisdictional corporate insolvencies. London banking and finance head Karen Gilbert, who ‘provides great availability, even during weekends, and is able to provide very clear, reliable advice’, advises on corporate and commercial law transactions, including corporate restructuring, banking and finance transactions (particularly property finance), M&A, joint ventures, and private and public equity transactions. The recommended senior associates are Charlotte Butcher, who is well regarded for insolvency, banking, professional negligence and commercial litigation disputes; Jenny Grainger, who advises on Cayman and BVI law in relation to general banking and finance, M&A, joint ventures, private equity, and general corporate transactions; and corporate finance and investment fund specialist Fraser McGee.

The best BVI law firm in the market in terms of cost, responsiveness and quality of work’, Harneys is ‘quite simply superb in all areas; the practice has a cumulative technical knowledge and industry acumen that is second to none, and it provides timely and cost-effective advice’. Its key practice areas include corporate and commercial law, banking and finance deals, litigation and insolvency, and investment funds and regulatory matters. Highlights included Rachel Graham, who is ‘strongly recommended and provides great commercial insights’, leading advice to Virgin on its majority acquisition of BMR Energy from NASDAQ-listed private equity firm, American Capital; Simon Hudd advising Coinsilium Group on its listing on London’s ICAP Securities and Derivatives Exchange Growth Market, thereby becoming the world’s first blockchain technology-focused company to be admitted to trading on a regulated exchange; and recently appointed London managing partner Phillip Kite, who is also global litigation and insolvency head, defending the Alhamrani brothers against a claim concerning the ownership of shares in BVI-registered company, Chemtrade. Indira Birkwood is a BVI finance law expert; and BVI corporate lawyer Sean Scott is ‘technically superb, reactive and client friendly, and has a depth of market knowledge gained over the years that means he is rarely surprised by anything’. Peter Tarn is chairman of the firm’s executive committee; William Peake is an offshore Cayman litigation lawyer; and BVI litigation and insolvency lawyer Jeremy Child splits time between the London and BVI offices. Vicky Lord was promoted to the partnership in 2017; and senior associates Francesca Gibbons and Thomas Dugdale relocated to London from the firm’s BVI and Hong Kong offices, respectively. Counsel Christopher Hall and senior associate Lisa Akiri are also highly rated.

At Bahamas-based law firm LennoxPaton, London-based Rob McIntyre heads the firm’s BVI corporate and commercial and investment funds groups; his areas of practice include investment funds, corporate law, banking and finance deals, securities and M&A. McIntyre’s representative experience includes advising on the formation and regulation of BVI investment funds; acting for global financial institutions on BVI securities regulatory issues; and assisting global banking institutions with lending to BVI companies.

Maitland is recommended for providing multi-jurisdictional legal, tax, fiduciary, investment and fund administration services to private, corporate and institutional clients. CEO Steven Georgala has over 30 years’ experience in international tax planning and the structuring of international collective investment funds; he also advises international financial services groups on the location, establishment and regulation of holding companies and collective investment undertakings. Rupert Clarey is focused on advising ultra-high-net-worth individuals, trustees and institutions on the establishment and administration of trust and company structures, and related tax planning aspects.

The premier provider of effective, efficient and personable advice’, Maples and Calder’s ‘impressive and strong team offers great service and properly-priced excellence’. The firm has a full-service London office, providing both Cayman and BVI legal advice on investment funds, finance, corporate law, trusts and litigation. It advised Chrysaor Holdings on the equity arrangements of its substantial reorganisation. The team also acted for Liberty Global on the Cayman law aspects of the high-value acquisition and financing of Cable & Wireless Communications; and assisted Hollywood-based firm Cornerstone Group with the BVI legal aspects of raising $71.5m on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. Managing partner Paul Govier heads the London investment funds team; Jonathan Caulton is London finance team head; Matthew Gilbert, who heads the London BVI team, is ‘a great lawyer who delivers as he promises he will’; Jack Marriott is London corporate head; and Heidi de Vries is ‘excellent and very knowledgeable about both the law and market practice’. Nick Evans is ‘an excellent investment company attorney who is very responsive and knowledgeable’; and the ‘technically and extremely strong’ Harjit Kaur is ‘absolutely amazing – she is always composed, measured and cuts to the chase, and what Harjit doesn’t know about Cayman law isn’t worth knowing’. Other key London partners include Ray Davern, whose expertise includes contentious and non-contentious international trusts and private client work in relation to both the BVI and Cayman, and Tatziana Paraguacuto-Maheo; while of counsel Joanna Russell is ‘a shining star’. Notable associates include Matthew Bloomfield, who is ‘technically great and a pleasure to deal with at all times, even when things are difficult’; litigator Mungo Lowe, who is ‘very responsive, commercial and client friendly’; funds law specialists Robert Hughes, Ruth Brownlie, Shae Roberts and Caroline Dell; Julia Cornett, who has extensive experience in corporate finance and structured finance transactions; Christopher Oliver, who has particular expertise in M&A transactions; and Alex Way, who advises institutional trustees and private individuals on all areas of trust law and related private wealth issues.

Mourant Ozannes has ‘a very responsive, knowledgeable and commercial team that gives high-quality advice and always delivers in line with clients’ expectations’. The London office advises financial institutions, public companies, corporations, fund promoters, and high-net-worth (HNW) private clients on the BVI, Cayman Islands, Guernsey and Jersey aspects of complex, multi-jurisdictional transactions and disputes. Through the firm’s affiliated business, Mourant Ozannes Corporate Services, it provides a range of corporate administration services. London managing partner Robert Dugganstrikes the perfect balance between technical expertise and commercial acumen’; he regularly advises on the establishment and operation of investment funds in the Cayman Islands, and is highly rated for corporate finance and financial regulatory matters. International trusts and private client specialist Tony Pursall is recommended for his advice to trustees, beneficiaries, protectors, banks and HNW individuals on a wide range of trust and private client matters. Counsel Chinyin Johnston, whose ‘quality of work and prompt responses impress’, is a specialist corporate finance lawyer who advises banks, borrowers and arrangers on acquisition and leveraged finance; asset finance; debt restructuring; derivatives and structured products; insolvency and security enforcement; project finance; and real estate finance. Robin Gibb is a recommended associate, who is particularly focused on the launch and registration of investment funds, corporate governance and general regulatory issues, as well as advising major financial institutions and Cayman-domiciled borrowers on bank lending transactions.

Walkers is ‘as responsive and professional as any top City firm; when it comes to BVI and Cayman law, it is a market leader that is proactive, extremely responsive, practical, knowledgeable and represents value for money. The practice also has good strength and depth and is prepared to go the extra mile’. The London office recently experienced growth at senior associate level; finance and corporate expert Catherine Overton joined from Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP, while Paul Goss and Jennifer Fox relocated to the London international dispute resolution team from the firm’s Hong Kong and BVI offices, respectively. The team is highly rated for BVI and Cayman advice in the firm’s key practice areas, namely corporate law finance, investment funds, insolvency and dispute resolution. Transactional highlights included the team advising investment fund client City Financial on its complex acquisition of Convex Strategy, which involved several jurisdictions. On the contentious side, the practice defended The Board of Chagala Group against a number of interlocutory applications, including two injunctions and an application for summary judgment, which involved BVI company Chagala Group. London managing partner and finance and corporate head Jack Boldarin splits his practice between Cayman and BVI law transactions; specialises in banking and finance and corporate transactions; and has particular expertise in advising clients from emerging markets across Africa and the CIS region. The investment funds co-heads are Hughie Wong, who is ‘knowledgeable, available and a great problem solver who tailors his advice according to clients’ needs’, and the ‘outstanding lawyer’ and India practice head Jasmine Amaria, who is ‘exceptionally responsive, commercial and excellent at finding solutions to complex questions’. Insolvency and dispute resolution head John O'Driscoll was recently promoted to the partnership and is ‘a trusted and responsive adviser, who is extremely user-friendly and proactive on any matter he advises on’. Other key partners include Neil McDonald, who is ‘an excellent lawyer and very personable and efficient’; and the ‘very good, responsive’ finance and corporate transactions specialist Alexandra Corner, who has specific expertise in asset finance and real estate finance transactions. Mark Galazzi is a key senior associate, whose international practice covers a broad range of domestic and cross-border finance and corporate transactions, as well as restructuring and insolvency matters.

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