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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In Europe, Middle East and Africa, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for seven consecutive years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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Ireland > Energy and natural resources > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

Index of tables

  1. Energy and natural resources
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Energy and natural resources clients in Ireland using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact david.burgess@legal500.com.

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A&L Goodbody is highly active in the financing and development of large-scale renewable energy projects, particularly wind farms, with John Dallas and department head Ross Moore advising a syndicate of lenders – including the European Investment Bank for the first time - in relation to Oweninny wind farm, potentially the largest wind farm in Ireland. The team was also involved in a number of substantial energy M&A transactions, including assisting HgCapital and Craydal with its sale of a majority stake in a wind farm portfolio with a capacity of more than 220MW to a group of Japanese investors. Kevin Feeney is another key team member.

Arthur Cox’s Alex McLean leads the practice and is considered ‘the leading energy law expert in the country, who is vastly experienced across all areas including energy markets, renewable support schemes, contracts and industry codes’. In addition to advising several lenders on a number of wind farm financings, McLean assisted Covanta with its acquisition of BlackRock’s minority stake in the Dublin Waste to Energy project and the ensuing creation of a joint venture with Green Investment Group. The ‘very hard-working’ and ‘hands-onFlorence Loric is ‘exceptional in her field of European competition law, energy and litigation’.

Mason Hayes & Curran has 'assembled an exceptional team' with an 'in-depth understanding of the industry', and advises major private sector lenders on onshore renewable energy projects. In one work highlight, 'hands-on' and 'assertive' practice co-head William Carmody and construction expert Eoin Cassidy advised Norddeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale on the project financing of the Knockalough wind farm in County Galway, which will have an export capacity of 33.6MW. Other co-head Rory Kirrane acts on energy-related construction disputes. The team also advised on acquisitions in the energy sector; by way of example, Cassidy assisted NTR with its acquisition of Aeolus wind farm. Associate Muireann Hernon 'is an exceptional talent'.

Providing 'sound advice', Matheson is very strong in the electricity sector, which is evidenced by practice head Garret Farrelly acting for General Electric on the first corporate power purchase agreement concluded between a wind farm generation company and a subsidiary of Microsoft. Farrelly also provided comprehensive advice to EirGrid and Soni on the new integrated single electricity market. The 'approachable' team, which is 'available at any time', also has expertise in respect of oil and gas M&A transactions, including regulatory advice; it advised Vermilion Energy on its acquisition of Shell E&P Ireland with Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. Senior associate Elizabeth McCann is another key team member.

McCann FitzGerald is ‘highly competent in regulatory law’. ‘Standout’ practice head Patricia Lawless, who ‘has unmatched expertise in natural gas and electricity law’, advises Ervia on gas projects, gas connections and regulatory matters, including energy regulation under domestic and EU law. In recent highlights, Valerie Lawlor advised Brookfield Renewable and AES on separate matters relating to the launch of the integrated single energy market; she and Rory O’Malley also handled all aspects of UniInstitutional Infrastruktur's acquisition of Powercon Wind Energy, the owner of a 36.8MW operational wind farm.

William Fry’s broad practice advises domestic and international clients such as utilities, lenders and developers in the gas, water and commodities space, as well as the renewable energy sector. Practice head Fergus Devine assisted Belgian developer Parkwind with its investment in an offshore wind development company, which included regulatory advice on offshore wind. Devine’s recent instructions include advising long-standing client Aughinish Alumina on gas supply agreements and electricity contracts. Consultant Louise Eccleston is another name to note.

Beauchamps’ specialism lies in the renewable energy space, where the team acts for some major developers and lenders. ‘Very good’ practice head Ainsley Heffernan acted for innogy Renewables on its acquisition of a 50% stake in the proposed 600MW Dublin Array offshore wind farm, which included carrying out legal due diligence on the project. David Gunn, who joined from Australian firm Minter Ellison, has strong project finance experience. Gavin Blake joined Byrne Wallace.

Gavin Blake has been a ‘good signing’ for the ‘always available’ team at Byrne Wallace; he now jointly runs the department with Neil Keenan. The team is also recognised for its ‘knowledge of the industry and the participants therein’, which translated into new client wins such as ING Bank, the Electricity Supply Board and Viridian. Gerry Beausang advised London-based investment trust The Renewables Infrastructure Group on the Irish aspects of the acquisition of a partly operational and partly developed wind farm in County Kerry. Keenan acted for Mainstream Renewable Power on a number of mandates.

In addition to regulatory work, Eversheds Sutherland advises clients in the conventional and renewable energy sectors, particularly in the transactional sphere, and has the ability to provide cross-border advice on Irish, Northern Irish and English law. Practice head Mark Varian handled the acquisitions and sales of several wind farms, and advised First Trust Bank on the financing of two wind farms in Northern Ireland. Kevin Collins together with Lee Murphy advised on Sojitz’s €350M purchase of a 60% stake in the Project Emerald portfolio, which has a capacity of 223MW.

Business acumen’, ‘practical solutions and common sense’ characterise Philip Lee, which acts for an array of actors in the energy sector like developers, financers and large energy users. Coming from top-tier firm William Fry, new practice head Siobhan McCabe brings with her ‘excellent knowledge of the industry’ and ‘drove the whole show’ on a number of occasions. By way of example, she acted for Bank of Ireland on the financing of several projects, including Curraghderrig wind farm. Alice Whittaker advised Innogy on a proposed 600MW offshore wind farm, and Microsoft on the first power purchase agreement with a renewable energy generator.

LK Shields Solicitors' energy and natural resources team has ‘a great depth of accumulated experience and knowledge of the energy market in Ireland’. Practice head Philip Daly, who ‘brings calmness and quiet confidence in an unassuming style and has lots of patience with those less familiar with the nuances of Irish law’, had a varied caseload; recent instructions included advising US multinational Ameresco on the creation of a joint venture for the development of an energy park, which includes combined heat and power, solar and wind power.

McDowell Purcell’s focus lies on the renewable sector, particularly wind energy, where the team acts for developers, financiers and operators of wind farms. Department head Feilim O’Caoimh has been highly active on the project financing side of a number of wind farm and single wind turbine projects. In one work highlight, O’Caoimh advised a developer on the project finance and construction of a 20.3MW wind farm.

Pinsent Masons LLP's recently established Dublin office manages to continually attract new clients, including developers and energy companies. Practice head Richard Murphy advised The Renewables Infrastructure Group on the acquisition of onshore wind farms located in County Kerry, including the energy regulatory aspects. He also acted for SDS Energy Group on the development, construction and procurement of a battery storage project in Dundalk.

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Legal Developments in Ireland

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • LANDWELL Bulletin: Managing in a Downturn

    As we are all well aware this is the most turbulent climate for business both nationally and internationally, that any of us have experienced. We have therefore focused this bulletin on areas where we believe we can help you take decisive steps to manage the issues that are required to get through the downturn and be properly prepared for the future.
  • The Companies (Amendment) Act 2009

    The Companies (Amendment) Act, 2009 (the “Act”) was signed into law on 12 July 2009. The Act provides for signifi cant changes to company law compliance and enforcement. It gives increased powers of search and seizure to the Offi ce of the Director of Corporate Enforcement (“ODCE”) and expands disclosure obligations with regard to transactions between a company and its directors (including specifi c changes for licensed banks). The Act also relaxes the requirement that at least one director of an Irish company must be resident in the State.
  • New Rules for Acquiring Transactions in the Financial Sector

    In line with EU-mandated requirements, Ireland has introduced new rules governing acquisitions, in whole or in part, of certain regulated financial institutions.
  • Irish Merger Control: Review of Key Developments in 2008

    A 47% Year-on-Year Drop in the Number of Deals Notified: Reflecting the global decline in merger activity, the number of deals notified to the Competition Authority fell to 38 in 2008, a 47% decrease from 2007, when 72 deals were notified, and a more than 60% decrease from the 2006 peak of 98 notified deals.
  • European Communities (Takeover Bids (Directive 2004/25/EC)) Regulations 2006

    The EU Takeovers Directive (2004/25/EC) (the “Takeovers Directive”) has been transposed into Irish law by the European Communities (Takeover Bids (Directive 2004/25/EC)) Regulations, 2006 (S. I. No. 255 of 2006) (the “Takeovers Regulations”). The stated aim of the Takeovers Directive is to strengthen the Single Market in financial services by facilitating cross-border restructuring and enhancing minority shareholder protection. Many of the provisions of the Directive are already contained in the existing Irish regime for the supervision of takeovers set out in the Irish Takeover Panel Act, 1997 (the “Act”), the Takeover Rules, 2001 (the “Rules”) and the Companies Acts 1963 – 2005, which will continue to apply. The Takeovers Regulations cater for those areas not already dealt with in the existing regime or areas of the regime that needed to be adjusted as a result of the requirements of the Takeovers Directive.
  • Establishing a Retail Fund in Ireland for sale in Japan Fund Structures and Features

    The issuing of securities of offshore funds for public sale into Japan is governed by a combination of the Securities and Exchange Law of Japan (the "SEL") which is enforced by the Japanese Ministry of Finance ("MOF"), the Law Concerning Investment Trust and Investment Company of Japan (the "Investment Funds Law") which is enforced by the Financial Services Agency of Japan ("FSA").Establishing a Retail Fund in Ireland for sale in Japan Fund Structures and Features
  • Equality before the Law

    Employment Equality legislation in Ireland is to be found in the Employment Equality Act 1998 as amended by the Equality Act 2004. This legislation is extremely detailed but in effect makes it unlawful for employers to discriminate against a person on the basis of gender, marital status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, race, and membership of the traveller community. These are referred to as the “discriminatory grounds”.
  • Enforcement of Foreign Judgments in Ireland

    The enforcement of judgments between the EU member states is regulated by the Brussels I Regulation (44/2001, OJL 12/1, 16 January 2001) (“the Regulation”). On the 22nd December 2000, the European Council agreed the Regulation to replace the Brussels Convention on Jurisdiction and Enforcement of Judgments 1968 (“the Brussels Convention”). The purpose of the Regulation was to bring the law contained in the Brussels Convention into the main body of EC Law. The Regulation was implemented in Ireland by Statutory Instrument 52 of 2002, European Communities (Civil and Commercial Judgments) Regulations 2002, which came into force on the 1st March 2002.
  • E-Discovery

    Unlike the United States, which is leading the way in relation to e-discovery and where the disclosure of electronic data has become standard procedure, as of yet there is no standard protocol or practice direction issued in relation to e-discovery in Ireland. Despite this fact, Irish lawyers are beginning to appreciate the invaluable nature of electronic data which can be retrieved and used in commercial litigation.
  • Disclosure Requirements with respect to Company Particulars

    Directive 2003/58/EC amending Directive 68/151/EEC (the “First Disclosure Directive”) became effective on 1st April, 2007 having been transposed into Irish law by the European Communities (Companies) (Amendment) Regulations 2007 (S.I. No. 49 of 2007) (the “Regulations”).

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