France > Industry focus > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings
Index of tables
Industry focus: energy
Other recommended firms
Allen & Overy LLP is ‘the go-to-firm’ for power and energy projects in Africa. The 17-lawyer team advises international lenders and sponsors on the financing of large-scale power, hydro and renewable energy projects. It is also involved in high-profile work in France, further afield in Europe and Western Asia. The firm is notably assisting the lenders with the financing of a 108MW wind farm project in Romania. The practice also handles regulatory, finance and corporate work in France. It recently advised Royal Dutch Shell on the disposal of Butagaz. The practice is jointly headed by Alexandre Ancel and Tim Scales, who is ‘a big name in African project finance and knows the market inside out’. Other key figures are Rod Cork, Adrian Mellor and Christine Poyer-Rufenacht.
Clifford Chance’s impressive energy projects practice often advises lenders and is involved in numerous large hydropower, conventional and renewable energy project financings in Africa, as well as high-profile renewable energy projects in France. The practice is assisting the lenders with the financing of the 450MW Azura gas turbine power project in Nigeria and has been advising Eolien Maritime France on three major offshore wind farm projects. The firm also handles oil and gas and mining work, as well as some energy M&A. Key figures in the practice include co-head of the firm’s Africa practice Anthony Giustini, co-head of the North Africa practice Delphine Siino Courtin, Nikolaï Eatwell and David Préat, who is a reference in public law. Laurent Schoenstein is also involved in some M&A-related work; Richard Tomlinson was promoted to partner.
Gide Loyrette Nouel A.A.R.P.I. is often involved in international power and energy projects in Africa, Brazil and the UK; it also has strong oil and gas and natural resources experience in Africa and Mongolia. The firm is also a key player for regulatory and litigation work and renewable energy projects in France, and is advising the winning consortium on Cestas’ 300MW photovoltaic solar project. EDF, Areva and Engie are also clients. John Crothers, François Krotoff and Stéphane Vernay are the key contacts for international projects, with Michel Guénaire and Thomas Courtel being recommended for domestic work.
Linklaters LLP has an impressive project finance practice in France and Africa, typically advising lenders and sponsors on large power and renewable energy projects. Notably it advised the lenders on the $1.4bn multi-currency project financing of the Jorf Lasfar IPP expansion in Morocco. The firm also handles high-profile project and M&A work in France and across Europe. It recently advised Société Générale on the financing of Cestas’ 300MW project. The practice also handles work in the mining and oil and gas fields. Glencore and GDF Suez E&P are other clients. Bertrand Andriani and François April are key names in the practice. Public law expert Paul Lignières, M&A partners Bruno Derieux and Marc Petitier, and counsel Mark Barges are other names to note.
BCTG Avocats is ‘one of the very best names in France in the energy sector’. The 12-lawyer team has ‘deep industry knowledge’ and stands out for its ability to provide ‘a comprehensive view on issues’. The practice has leading regulatory expertise and gives very solid M&A advice. It acts for leading renewable energy operators, including EDF Energies Nouvelles, and is involved in the largest offshore and onshore wind projects in France. The practice is jointly led by Paul Elfassi, who is praised for ‘his skills and strong knowledge’; Catherine Dupuy-Burin des Roziers, who has a strong aptitude ‘for assessing and solving complex situations’; and Diane Mouratoglou, whose pragmatism and experience are key.
CGR Legal is highly regarded for its leading regulatory expertise in renewable energy in France, where it is handling some of the key offshore wind farm projects. It advises many energy operators and investors including La Compagnie du Vent. The practice recently assisted Eco Delta with the sale of its solar and maintenance businesses. Fabrice Cassin is a key name in France for regulatory and public law issues, and Hélène Gelas is also recommended. Also noteworthy are corporate and M&A partners Philippe Raybaud, who has ‘strong negotiating skills’, and Florence Trognon-Dumain, as well as tax expert Bertrand Galvez and Gilles Gassenbach, who handles litigation.
CMS has leading energy regulatory expertise in France. The firm advises power producers and operators and is involved in high-stakes litigation in the gas sector, where it is representing Engie in a landmark case questioning the legality of France’s regulated gas tariffs. The practice is also acting for Ailes Marines on the Saint-Brieuc offshore wind farm project. Christophe Barthélemy is highly recommended. Jean-Jacques Lecat handles oil and gas work in Africa.
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP has notable mandates acting for sponsors in large hydropower and mining projects in Africa. The firm is assisting the Government of Cameroon, EDF International, Rio Tinto Alcan and the International Finance Corporation in connection with the financing and development of the 420MW Nachtigal hydroelectric power project in Cameroon, and acting for Vale and VBG on the $10bn Simandou iron ore project in Guinea. The firm is also active in oil and gas and energy-related strategic M&A. Senior counsel Jean-Pierre Vignaud, Andrew Bernstein and Barthélemy Faye are the key contacts.
De Pardieu Brocas Maffei has leading regulatory expertise and also provides ‘high-quality advice and creative deal solutions’. The firm is able to work for all sides: leading energy producers and operators, investors and lenders. It handles strategic corporate transactions, litigation and development work, such as assisting Neoen with Cestas’ 300 MW photovoltaic solar project. The practice is led by Jean-Renaud Cazali, who focuses on the finance side, and the ‘very professional and pragmatic’ Christine Le Bihan-Graf. Corporate partners Patrick Jaïs and Thomas Bréart de Boisanger are also highly involved.
Herbert Smith Freehills LLP has ‘extensive knowledge of the oil and gas industry, and thorough knowledge of local legal subtleties’. The firm is regularly praised for its deep knowledge of Africa, where it is highly involved in the oil and gas and mining areas on behalf of sponsors. The sizeable team also handles work in France, particularly involving renewable energy. The range of expertise spans contracts, M&A and financing, where it produces ‘an excellent quality of work’. Recent highlights include assisting Mitsui with its investments in the Moatize coal mine project and Nacala corridor rail and port infrastructure project in Mozambique, and advising Tullow Oil on exploration opportunities in French Guiana. Bertrand Montembault heads the Paris energy and infrastructure group. Other key figures are Stéphane Brabant, who chairs the firm’s global African practice, the ‘tenacious’ Nina Bowyer, Leïla Hubeaut and Rebecca Major.
Holman Fenwick Willan France LLP has leading oil and gas expertise, encompassing upstream, midstream and downstream matters in France (and its overseas territories) and Africa. The practice advises some of the world’s largest oil and gas companies. It recently handled strategic work regarding the sale of fuel stations in France. The team is also assisting Esso Guyane Française Exploration and Production with the negotiation of an exclusive hydrocarbons exploration licence. Robert Follie is in charge of the firm’s worldwide oil and gas practice. Franck Bernauer, who joined from Fidal, and Hugues de La Forge, who arrived from Jeantet AARPI have substantial experience in project work relating to Africa.
King & Spalding LLP has ‘a high-quality team, is dedicated and used to handling complex deals’. Headed by Mehdi Haroun, the practice has ‘excellent knowledge of North Africa’, where it is top-notch for oil and gas work. The firm is involved in leading Algerian projects, such as assisting Dragon Oil regarding its upstream gas interests in Algeria. The practice is also handling high-profile work in renewable energy, where it is advising DONG Energy on a 1,500MW offshore wind project in France. Arbitration partner Ken Fleuriet and counsel and public law expert Ruxandra Lazar are other names to note.
Norton Rose Fulbright runs a ‘very good renewables project financing practice in France advising lenders’ and has ‘very deep and vast knowledge of regulatory developments concerning renewables in France’. The firm is also highly involved in representing energy sponsors in M&A, financing and project development in France and Africa. The team has been assisting the Moroccan Agency for Solar Energy with the development and financing of the 200MW NOORo II and 150MW NOORo III solar projects. Engie and Total are also clients. Anne Lapierre heads the firm’s EMEA energy practice. Also recommended are: Arnaud Bélisaire, who is ‘insightful and risk oriented’, and of counsel Véronique Bruel, who is ‘extremely sharp and quick’. The firm also handles mining-related work in Africa – Poupak Bahamin heads the mining and natural resources practice.
Orrick Rambaud Martel ranks among the leading players for large energy projects in sub-Saharan Africa, where it assists states and sponsors. It is handling instructions in some of Africa’s largest hydro, biomass and LNG projects, notably including advising the Ministry of Energy of the Democratic Republic of Congo on the 4,800MW Inga 3 hydropower project. It is also active in oil and gas, including assisting Etablissements Maurel & Prom with projects in Gabon and France, and also handles energy projects in France and its overseas territories. Key figures in the practice include Yves Lepage, who is deputy head of the firm’s global energy and infrastructure practice, and Pascal Agboyibor, who heads the Africa practice. Jean-Luc Champy and of counsel Olivier Mélédo are also names to note.
Shearman & Sterling LLP represents sponsors in the development of some of Africa’s largest mining projects and has strong expertise in oil and gas, areas in which Christophe Asselineau leads the team. Guinea Alumina Corporation, Sundance Resources and Marathon Oil Corporation are clients. The firm is also developing its presence in renewable energy projects in Europe through Pierre-Nicolas Ferrand. It recently represented GDF Suez, CDC and NGE in a large-scale geothermal power plant project designed to provide electricity to the Dominican Republic.
Watson Farley & Williams LLP is ‘highly competent and very knowledgeable’ in the renewable energy sector, where it has strong experience of advising international investors and lenders on the financing and M&A aspects of French renewable projects. It notably assisted EFG Hermes’ private equity arm on the €160m acquisition of a 49% stake in EDP Renewables France. Practice head Vincent Trévisani has ‘good industry knowledge’ and is ‘very good at seeing the full picture’. Finance expert Laurence Martinez-Bellet is ‘most experienced in negotiating facility agreements’, and the ‘extremely responsive’ Laurent Battoue is recommended for public law aspects. Guillaume Ansaloni recently joined from De Gaulle Fleurance & Associés.
Industry focus: food
Keller and Heckman LLP
ProductLawFirm has ‘outstanding expertise and experience in food law, which constitutes the very core of the practice’. The four-lawyer team has strong French and EU regulatory expertise and also handles litigation. It is regularly consulted by leading French and international producers to advise on marketing campaigns and the team also has experience dealing with sensitive issues or crisis management. The practice is led by ‘very experienced’ co-founders Antoine de Brosses and Gilles Boin, who previously worked at Keller & Heckman LLP. Isabelle Haye joined the firm from Reinhart Marville Torre in July 2014.
Keller and Heckman LLP provides advisory and litigation support to clients in the food and food packaging sectors. Katia Merten-Lentz is the key contact in Paris.
Healthcare and life sciences
Index of tables
Industry focus: healthcare and life sciences
Other recommended firms
- August Debouzy
BCW & Associés
- Baker McKenzie SCP
- Bird & Bird
- Clifford Chance
- DLA Piper
Deprez Guignot & Associés
- Galien Affaires
- Gide Loyrette Nouel A.A.R.P.I.
Ginestié Magellan Paley-Vincent
- Hoyng Rokh Monegier
- Jones Day
- Lmt Avocats
- Norton Rose Fulbright
- Gilles Bigot - Winston & Strawn LLP Corporate
Jonathan Burnham -
HBC AvocatsCorporate, R&D
- Alain Decombe - Dechert Corporate
- Christophe Hénin - Intuity Competition, litigation
- Bernard Geneste - CMS Regulatory
Alain Gorny -
- Jean-Marc Grosperrin - Dentons Corporate
- Jean-Marie Job - De Gaulle Fleurance & Associés Litigation, regulatory
- Pascale Poupelin - Dentons Litigation, regulatory
Jacques-Antoine Robert -
Simmons & Simmons LLPLitigation
- Mélanie Thill-Tayara - Dechert Competition
The ‘excellent’ 16-lawyer team at Allen & Overy LLP is recommended for high-value pharmaceutical patent matters and has experience in cases seeking amendments to legislation. The firm acts for various pharmaceuticals laboratories – it is representing Novartis in a dispute with Teva and Biogaran regarding the enforcement of second medical use patents. GlaxoSmithKline and Pfizer are also clients. Practice head Laëtitia Bénard is ‘an advocate for bringing France to the forefront of modern pharmaceutical patent practice’. The ‘pragmatic and tenacious’ David Por is also recommended along with recently promoted partner Alexandre Rudoni.
Dechert has ‘unique healthcare and M&A expertise’, and the team ‘knows perfectly the pharmaceuticals business’. The practice advises a number of leading pharmaceuticals manufacturers and biotechnology groups in patent litigation and other matters. It assisted the French subsidiaries of GlaxoSmithKline during several strategic exchanges of assets with Novartis. Practice head Alain Decombe has ‘extremely good knowledge of the industry’. Also recommended are recently promoted partners Isabelle Marguet and Anne-Charlotte Rivière. Marianne Schaffner is a key name for patent litigation. The hiring of Mélanie Thill-Tayara from Norton Rose Fulbright augmented the firm’s range of experience in competition law.
Dentons shows an ‘excellent knowledge of the pharmaceuticals field’ and ‘provides a high-quality product in desired time’. The firm has one of the market’s most comprehensive practices, extending to having strong experience in corporate and regulatory matters for many of the world’s largest pharmaceuticals businesses. It assisted Laboratoires Servier Monde with the establishment of a strategic international partnership with GeNeuro. The practice is headed by Pascale Poupelin and Jean-Marc Grosperrin, who is praised for ‘his leadership and insightful legal guidance’. Olivia Guéguen is a ‘deal-maker who is able to manage expectations on both sides of the table’ and Anne-Laure Marcerou is also recommended.
Hogan Lovells (Paris) LLP stands out for its ability to manage ‘very high-value mass tort claims’. It is defending TÜV Rheinland AG in sensitive litigation resulting from the certification of French breast implant PIP. Other clients include Eli Lilly and Sanofi Pasteur MSD. Practice head Cécile Derycke is ‘an excellent strategist and a refined and persistent courtroom lawyer’. The firm also assists leading laboratories with patent matters through Stanislas Roux-Vaillard, while the ‘technically excellent’ Mikael Salmela deals with regulatory work.
Sea Avocats, which now fields three lawyers following the hiring of the highly experienced Alain Gorny from LexCase, has ‘a perfect mastery of healthcare law’ and is involved in highly sensitive product liability cases. It also has strong regulatory expertise. Pierre Fabre Médicament, Sanofi Pasteur MSD and Medtronic are clients.
Simmons & Simmons LLP stands out for its comprehensive range of expertise and its leading product liability practice. The firm advises the world’s largest laboratories and is handling several of France’s most high-profile product liability cases; regulatory and tax issues are other areas of expertise. GlaxoSmithKline and Merck & Co are clients. Jacques-Antoine Robert heads the firm’s international life sciences group. Other key figures in the practice are Alexandre Regniault, Etienne Kowalski, Jean-Luc Cuadrado and of counsel Eric Nigri. Michèle Anahory joined DLA Piper.
CMS has leading regulatory expertise and recently challenged governmental orders regarding product classifications and reimbursement. Expanscience and Negma are clients. Practice head Bernard Geneste is recommended.
De Gaulle Fleurance & Associés fields ‘excellent’ lawyers that ‘remain focused on their clients’ objectives’. The team assists manufacturers of medical devices, pharmaceuticals and biotech products. The regulatory and patent practice is particularly strong, while product liability is another active area. Transactional work included assisting Takara Bio with the acquisition of Cellectis AB. Key figures in the team include Jean-Marie Job, who is one of the market’s top regulatory experts, Louis de Gaulle and Valérie Lafarge-Sarkozy. The practice hired Blandine Fauran.
Fieldfisher has ‘excellent knowledge of the healthcare sector’. The six-lawyer team assists leading generics laboratories and medical devices manufacturers with litigation, regulatory and distribution matters. It recently handled challenging work regarding the wholesale of drugs in France. Practice head Olivier Lantrès is ‘responsive and technical’. Brigitte Daille-Duclos is another key figure.
HBC Avocats has ‘strong expertise in biotechnology’ and ranks among the best for negotiating licensing and research agreements. Genticel and Genethon are clients. The three-lawyer team recently assisted Valneva with the negotiation of an exclusive licensing agreement for vaccine production in China. Practice head Jonathan Burnham has ‘in-depth knowledge of the French, UK and US legal framework’.
Intuity utilises its regulatory, litigious and competition expertise in representing leading laboratories and medical devices companies. The practice has been involved in product liability cases concerning Parkinson’s disease treatments and contraceptive pills. Christophe Hénin and Anne Servoir are strongly recommended.
McDermott Will & Emery AARPI advises leading pharmaceuticals groups on strategic transactions, such as acting for Servier on its exclusive licensing agreement with Taiho Pharmaceutical of Japan. The firm also advises biotech companies. Practice head Emmanuelle Trombe is strongly recommended. Anthony Paronneau was promoted to partner.
Reed Smith is ‘very helpful in terms of navigating the French legal system and explaining it to American clients’. The firm advises leading laboratories, medical devices manufacturers and private clinics. It has leading IP and patent litigation expertise through Marina Cousté and François Jonquères, as well as solid regulatory experience. The ‘fantastic’ Daniel Kadar ‘breaches the cultural divide’, while Benoît Charot and Marie Albertini are recommended for litigation.
Viguié Schmidt’s Etienne Gouesse assists leading laboratories in sensitive product liability cases and also handles regulatory work.
Winston & Strawn LLP has ‘remarkable knowledge of the healthcare sector’ and ‘ranks among the best firms for M&A work in the field’. The ten-lawyer team is ‘able to innovate in a very complex and highly regulated environment’, and has helped to modernise the French healthcare industry by developing new corporate structures. Générale de Santé is a client. Practice head Gilles Bigot ‘ranks among the best in France in terms of technique, knowledge and innovation’. Anne-Carine Ropars-Furet, Guillaume-Denis Faure and of counsel Florence Naudin are also recommended.
IT, telecoms and the internet
Index of tables
- Industry focus: IT, telecoms and the internet
- Other recommended firms
- Leading individuals: IT
- Leading individuals: telecoms
Industry focus: IT, telecoms and the internet
Other recommended firms
- August Debouzy
- Bersay & Associés
CBR & Associés
- Cohen & Gresser LLP
- De Gaulle Fleurance & Associés
Deprez Guignot & Associés
Gramond & Associés
Hoche Societe d'Avocats
- Lefèvre Pelletier & associés
- Olswang France LLP
- Pinsent Masons LLP
Simmons & Simmons LLP
Watson Farley & Williams LLP
- White & Case LLP
Leading individuals: IT
Alain Bensoussan -
- Rémy Bricard - Baker McKenzie SCP
Christiane Féral-Schuhl -
- Marc d’Haultfoeuille - Norton Rose Fulbright
- Jean-Luc Juhan - Latham & Watkins
- Stéphane Lemarchand - DLA Piper
Bruno Grégoire Sainte Marie -
- Laurent Szuskin - Baker McKenzie SCP
- Alain Bensoussan -
Leading individuals: telecoms
Baker McKenzie SCP produces ‘a quality of work that goes beyond what is expected even from a firm of that high reputation’ and ‘perfectly masters the area of IT providers and complex IT contracts’. The 18-lawyer team advises IT users on the negotiation of the largest and most complex IT systems and also handles sensitive data protection issues. It acted for Silca on the creation of a strategic partnership with Capgemini and advised SFIL on negotiating new trading and risk management software with Misys International Banking Systems. Other clients include Société Générale, Netflix, Casino and Google. The practice is led by Rémy Bricard, who is recommended for his ‘high-level expertise and global vision on a deal’, and Laurent Szuskin, whose ‘great strategic view is key to assisting his clients in the most complex and sensitive matters’. Senior counsels Christian Blomet and Denise Lebeau-Marianna are also recommended, the latter being a data protection expert and who ‘shows great creativity on new subjects’.
Latham & Watkins’ ‘rapid, efficient and available’ nine-lawyer team assists leading French technology users, advising on large and global IT and data projects and also handling litigation. The practice is jointly led by the ‘exceptional’ Jean-Luc Juhan, whose ‘negotiating skills and expertise are remarkable’, and the ‘very responsive and business-oriented’ Myria Saarinen, who is ‘expert in the data privacy field’.
Alain Bensoussan-Avocats has the largest dedicated team in the market, with 80 lawyers. Its expertise includes IT, telecoms, internet, data and robot law issues. Alain Bensoussan, Eric Barbry, Jean-François Forgeron, Frédéric Forster, Benoit De Roquefeuil and Marie-Cécile Berthod are the key contacts.
Allen & Overy LLP’s ‘excellent’ practice combines ‘high availability and in-depth IT industry knowledge’. The practice assists high-profile technology users with IT system integration, outsourcing and data protection issues. The firm acts for leading luxury brand owners and is advising on the development of the first connected luxury watch. Engie and L’Oréal are clients. Ahmed Baladi heads the practice, in which associates Emmanuelle Bartoli and Vera Lukic are significantly involved.
The ‘excellent’ Aramis mainly represents large corporate IT end users, advising on data protection or the negotiation of large IT projects and handling litigation; it has market-leading expertise in the online payment sector. The firm assisted Alstom with reviewing and renegotiating major IT agreements in the context of its partial purchase by GE. Visa, Beiersdorf and Lacoste are also clients. Practice head Benjamin May is ‘quick to respond and provides highly practical advice’.
Astura has ‘a strong and in-depth view of IT legal issues and ability to focus immediately on key topics’. The firm advises IT end users and providers and is often involved in high-end litigation. Practice head Matthieu Mélin ‘unites excellent technical skills with valuable human qualities’.
The ‘excellent’ Bird & Bird, which has ‘great knowledge’ of the IT, telecoms and internet sectors, often acts for major companies in the negotiation of IT solutions, the handling of data privacy issues and representation in litigation. Legrand, Michelin and Swiss Re are clients. The practice is led by Stéphane Leriche, Alexandre Vuchot, Ariane Mole, Marc Schuler, Marion Barbier and Michel Matas.
DLA Piper gives ‘business-oriented and proactive’ advice and has strong experience of advising leading corporations on IT systems negotiations and litigation. Clients include Verizon, Vodafone, Sanofi and Airbus. Gregory Tulquois and co-chair of the global practice Stéphane Lemarchand are ‘excellent lawyers’ and recently promoted partner Jonathan Rofé is also a notable figure. The firm also has strong data protection expertise and Carol Umhoefer is global co-chair of the firm’s data protection practice. The firm also provides ‘very valuable support’ to state entities and telecoms operators in Africa; Florence Guthfreund-Roland is ‘extremely responsive and always available at short notice’.
The ‘very strong’ practice at Féral-Schuhl/Sainte-Marie assists large IT users, including Vinci Park Services and Servier, and has longstanding experience of advising on IT systems, IP, data and internet matters. The 13-lawyer team is headed by Christiane Féral-Schuhl and Bruno Grégoire Sainte Marie, and notably also includes Etienne Papin, Olivier de Courcel and Olivia Luzi.
Franklin is ‘a perfect choice for US companies trying to deal with French legal issues’. The firm is involved in high-profile disputes and M&A transactions in the telecoms sector for Altice/Numericable and has strong IT, internet, data and encryption expertise. The practice recently assisted Racemi with the negotiation of an outsourcing agreement with IBM France and also routinely acts for start-ups. Practice head Bradley Joslove has ‘broad knowledge of French law issues pertaining to the internet’. Of counsel Laetitia de Pellegars is recommended for e-payment matters.
Gide Loyrette Nouel A.A.R.P.I. has strong telecoms expertise – where it advises operators, African states and public sector companies on regulatory and project matters – and is equally strong in the data privacy area, where it recently advised on e-projects in the healthcare and gas sectors. Clients include Eutelsat and Orange. Olivier Cousi and Thierry Dor are recommended. Rémy Fekete joined Jones Day.
Behring has ‘deep knowledge of the underlying IT business and real interest in it’. The four-lawyer team also stands out for its regulatory and competition expertise in the telecoms sector. Data protection is another area of increasing involvement. Highlights included assisting Orange with the IT aspects of its acquisition of Cloudwatt. IT provider clients include Swiss Post Solutions. Anne-Solène Gay gives ‘fast and clear assessment and guidance’, and has ‘an incredible network among French administrations and senior management of large French companies’.
DS Avocats advises IT providers and large French and international users, especially in the banking sector. Arnaud Tessalonikos heads the seven-lawyer team, which is handling major litigation cases and also advises on negotiation and implementation of IT system projects.
Derriennic Associés’ ‘efficient’ team has ‘real knowledge of IT companies and related businesses and markets’. It advises major French and international technology providers and users, often in the context of software licensing audits and related litigation. The team is led by Georges Jenselme, François-Pierre Lani and Pierre-Yves Margnoux, who is ‘an outstanding lawyer, in terms of technical and legal knowledge’.
Headed by Sabine Lipovetsky and Fabrice Perbost, Harlay Avocats’s seven-lawyer team assists leading technology providers and recently advised on various digitalisation and electronic signature matters. The firm also advises leading internet players on data protection issues.
Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s ‘advice is always accurate and guidance focuses solely on the essential points’. The data privacy practice is emerging as one of the best in France and is retained by top-end clients in the internet and banking sectors – for example, Google France and Twitter are clients. The practice is co-headed by Alexandra Néri, ‘an excellent lawyer who is very focused on the positive results’, and of counsel Sébastien Proust.
Hogan Lovells (Paris) LLP is instructed by the world’s largest internet companies, such as eBay and Facebook, advising on issues such as sensitive data privacy matters; the practice also advises on telecoms. Winston Maxwell is co-head of the firm’s practice globally. Through David Taylor, the firm also ranks as one of the leading players at international level for domain names issues, wherein the team regularly advises Facebook.
ITLaw Avocats has ‘acute knowledge of the IT and web sector and is able to innovate on unprecedented subjects’. The six-lawyer practice assists leading French companies – including major names in the retail, energy and engineering fields – with the implantation of global projects; it has strong experience in e-healthcare and software audits. Practice head Claudia Weber has ‘a high level of expertise’.
Cabinet Isabelle Renard combines ‘rigorous management of files with rapid and polished work’. The firm advises major technology users – including various banks – on IT, data privacy, cloud-computing and internet matters. Practice head Isabelle Renard has ‘excellent legal and operational expertise’ and ‘great knowledge of electronic signature issues’.
Jones Day hired Rémy Fekete from Gide Loyrette Nouel A.A.R.P.I., who has ‘unparalleled understanding of TMT matters, especially in the African market’. The firm represents leading French and international telecoms operators and recently assisted Telefónica with the creation of a French joint venture with Bouygues Telecom. Counsel Olivier Haas advises major corporations and banking institutions on IT systems and data issues.
Headed by Etienne Drouard, K&L Gates LLP’s six-lawyer team assists major companies with digital transformation, outsourcing matters and IT systems integration. It also advises on cutting-edge data protection matters. Altarea-Cogedim Group and Voyages-SNCF.com are clients, as are a number of luxury goods manufacturers and advertising groups. Claude-Etienne Armingaud is another name to note.
Headed by Marie-Hélène Tonnellier, Latournerie Wolfrom Avocats’ ‘greatly available team’ assists leading French and international clients with IT contract negotiation and litigation. The practice procured a favourable outcome for Sopra Steria in a dispute brought by Oracle. Free is another client. The ‘responsive’ Térence Cabot is a key name for representing mobile operators and public sector entities in the telecoms field.
Headed by Marc d’Haultfoeuille, Norton Rose Fulbright’s five-lawyer team assists leading companies, such as Brink’s and BNP Paribas, on IT contracts. The firm also advises on data privacy issues and telecoms matters. Of counsel Nadège Martin is another name to note.
Osborne Clarke’s ‘fantastic team’ demonstrates ‘cutting-edge knowledge’ and knows how to ‘balance risks appropriately’. The firm assists leading technology providers and users on the negotiation of IT systems and digital solutions. It recently advised Solocal on the negotiation of a strategic deal with Apple Inc. Béatrice Delmas-Linel is highly experienced. Also recommended is ‘highly competent’ counsel Eléonore Varet, who joined from Gilles Vercken Law Firm.
Frédéric Lecomte heads Stehlin & Associés’ team, which advises leading IT providers and clients, as well as internet companies. The scope of practice includes data privacy.
Taylor Wessing has ‘excellent knowledge of the IT field’. The five-lawyer practice handles IT and data privacy issues, often on behalf of a leading IT provider. The team recently handled several cases in the context of damage resulting from a fire occurring at data centres. Practice head Valérie Aumage has ‘formidable knowledge of the legal corpus and great negotiating skills’; Philippe Glaser is also recommended.
Vaughan Avocats provides ‘excellent-quality services, including when dealing with complex files’. The firm combines strong litigious skills with IT and internet expertise. It is notably involved in a case raising the question of the financial value of data. Clients include major technology providers and professional associations. Practice head Nicolas Herzog shows ‘pugnacity and is an excellent ally in complex situations’.
Industry focus: luxury goods
Dentons is an adviser to one of France’s leading luxury fashion houses and also acts for famous designers and creators. L’Oréal and Longchamp are also clients.
Meridian acts for many French and Italian fashion houses, advising on trade marks, copyrights, commercial leases, partnerships and litigation. Vincent Vilchien and François Berthod are the key contacts along with Philippe Clément, ‘a very good negotiator who knows how to identify key points’.