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Italy > Commercial, corporate and M&A > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings


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  1. Commercial, corporate and M&A
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Who Represents Who

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BonelliErede’s client base includes impressive names such as Eni, Blackstone, Permira and Tod’s. The firm has an ‘excellent practice that is extremely responsive, knowledgeable and client-oriented’. Umberto Nicodano and Carlo Montagna are group heads along with Stefano Cacchi Pessani, who ‘provides tailored valuable assistance and is fully committed to clients’. Cacchi Pessani worked alongside Stefano Micheli and founding partner Sergio Erede, who is ‘an outstanding lawyer and a real star in the Italian legal environment’, to advise Pirelli & Co on the segregation of its consumer business from the industrial division and on its subsequent integration of the latter into China National Tire & Rubber Company’s corresponding business. The team also acted for Abertis, the listed Spanish infrastructure group, on the acquisition of a majority stake in A4 Holding, the Italian motorway holding company. Alessandra Piersimoni is ‘someone clients really trust when working on challenging deals’, and Rome-based Roberto Cera is ‘appreciated for his leadership in corporate matters’. Other key figures include Alessandro Balp, Mario Roli - Alberto Saravalle and Andrea Carta Mantiglia, as well as Paolo Daino, Gianfranco Veneziano, Matteo Bonelli, Eliana Catalano, Vittoria Giustiniani and Umberto Nicodano. Rome-based Barbara Napolitano and Silvia Romanelli are also names to note; all other attorneys mentioned are based in Milan, except where noted otherwise.

Regularly involved in major hostile and friendly acquisitions involving listed and unlisted companies, Chiomenti Studio Legale’s recent highlights include advising Enel on a complex transaction involving its merger with its subsidiary, Enel Green Power; the work was led by Michele Carpinelli, who divides time between Milan and Rome. The team also assisted Artsana with the sale of a 60% stake in Artsana Group, a manufacturer of baby care and personal care products. Other notable clients include Gruppo Fininvest, Enel, Cassa Depositi e Prestiti and Veneto Banca. Recommended partners in Milan are Carlo Croff, private equity head Luigi Vaccaro, Stefano Mazzotti and Franco Agopyan. Francesco Tedeschini heads the department from Rome, where other names to note are Filippo Modulo and Umberto Borzi, whose ‘in-depth knowledge of the market and its intricacies are of great value for foreign institutional clients’.


Abou Jaoude & Associates Law Firm

Abou Jaoude & Associates Law Firm (AJA) regularly advises clients on complex cross-border acquisitions and corporate finance transactions in a wide array of sectors including telecoms, real estate, retail and banking. The Firm has extensive experience in the regulatory process of acquisitions such as licensing, compliance and post-acquisition integration. The Firm’s add-value is through its in-depth specialization and sharp understanding of the financial aspects of M&A deals allowing it to propose tailored legal solutions.

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One of the best law firms in Italy’, Gianni, Origoni, Grippo, Cappelli & Partners’thorough team is highly creative at finding solutions’. The practice regularly assists banks and corporations with domestic and cross-border M&A and investments. Evidencing the practice’s high-end deal experience, Rome-based Francesco Gianni acted for the Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance on Poste Italiane’s up-to €9bn privatisation; the team also advised Hitachi on the high-profile acquisition of 40% of Ansaldo STS, a listed manufacturer of railway signalling equipment, and AnsaldoBreda. Other key Rome advisers include Mauro Sambati, Roberto Cappelli, Ilaria Maria Placco, the ‘highly professional’ Andrea Aiello, and Alfredo D’Aniello, who has ‘excellent negotiation skills’. Milan-based Alessandro Giuliani, Alessandro Stoppa and India desk head Rosario Zaccà are also recommended.

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP’s ‘lawyers have deep international experience’. The team advised ArcelorMittal on the proposed acquisition of steel producer Ilva; and acted for Snam on the separation of its gas distribution business, through a partial demerger and subsequent listing on the Italian Stock Exchange. Milan-based Roberto Bonsignore is ‘a solid, experienced M&A lawyer’, and Rome-based Giuseppe Scassellati-Sforzolini is also recommended. Other key Milan partners include Roberto Casati, Pietro Fioruzzi and Matteo Montanaro, who ‘quickly wins the confidence of clients and delivers on all fronts’.

Among Clifford Chance’s buy-side deal highlights, Umberto Penco Salvi advised AcciaItalia on its bid for Italy’s ILVA Group, the largest steel plant in Europe. The team also advised Italian e-commerce company, Banzai, on the sale of Banzai Media Holding (Vertical Content division) to Italian publishing giant, Arnoldo Mondadori Editore. Paolo Sersale, Alberta Figari and Italian real estate head Claudio Cerabolini are key advisers. Paolo Rulli joined Grimaldi SL LLP.

Legance – Avvocati Associati’s solid client base includes funds, multinational corporations and financial conglomerates; examples include Apax Partners, AXA, Bayer, Ferrari and Generali Group. Highlights included Milan-based Bruno Bartocci advising AMC Entertainment Holdings on its acquisition of Odeon UCI Cinemas Group; and acting for Società Elettrica Altoatesina on its merger with Azienda Energetica. Gabriele Capecchi is also recommended; Rome-based Giovanni Nardulli, Cecilia Carrara and Andrea Fedi are also recommended along with Filippo Troisi, who has ‘excellent technical skills and is very well connected’. Alberto Giampieri, Gian Paolo Tagariello and Piero Venturini divide their time between Milan and Rome.

Linklaterscreates a strong sense of partnership with clients, making any difficult transaction an easier, more pleasant experience’. The practice is recommended for advice on deals in sectors such as financial services, infrastructure, private equity, energy, retail, luxury and telecoms. Recent work includes advising United Technologies on the acquisition, by its Italian affiliate, of a majority stake in Riello Group. Giovanni Pedersoli, Giorgio Fantacchiotti and Pietro Belloni are highly rated.

Pedersoli Studio Legalecombines knowledge of legal matters with a concrete business approach’. The practice is best known for its M&A deal experience in the banking and finance sector, but also acts for domestic and international corporations on their industrial sector investments. Recent work includes advising Intesa Sanpaolo on the €1bn-plus sale of payment instrument processing companies Setefi and Intesa Sanpaolo Card, as well as acting for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, as shareholder in ITEDI, on the latter’s merger with Italian media group, Gruppo Editoriale L’Espresso. Milan-based Carlo Pedersoli, Antonio Pedersoli, Alessandro Marena and Elio Marena are recommended along with Ascanio Cibrario, who ‘proposes practical legal solutions’. Key figures in Turin are Andrea Gandini, Eugenio Barcellona and Carlo Re, who is ‘distinguished not only by his legal skills, but also by his dedication to clients’.

Allen & Overy – Studio Legale Associato’s team is ‘very responsive and the quality of advice is always very high’. Recent large deal instructions include advising VimpelCom on its merger agreement with CK Hutchison Holdings. Milan-based Giovanni Gazzaniga is recommended, as is Paolo Ghiglione, whose ‘major strengths are in negotiations, managing counterparties and clients’ expectations, and finding solutions to deadlocks’.

At DLA Piper, Milan-based Italy managing partner Wolf Michael Kühne advised GEA Group on the acquisition of Comas, an Italian manufacturer of bakery machinery. Goffredo Guerra is head of corporate, and Alessandro Piermanni and Fabio del Bene are highly rated. Key figures in Rome are energy specialists Giulio Maroncelli and Francesco Novelli. The team experienced several departures, as Francesco Satta moved to Pavia e Ansaldo, Paolo Zamberletti joined K&L Gates, and Michael Bosco also left the firm.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer is experienced in the retail, TMT and consumer goods sectors, and has expertise in transactions involving the banking and insurance sectors, where it can call on regulatory experts. Milan-based practice head Nicola Asti advised AB InBev on the sale of Birra Peroni. Luigi Verga and the ‘highly available’ Enrico Bazzano are also recommended.

At Gattai Minoli Agostinelli & Partners, Milan-based managing partner Bruno Gattai is ‘particularly smart and has huge expertise’; and Cataldo Piccarretacombines deep knowledge with good commercial and business sense’. Recent work includes Luca Minoli assisting Italmobiliare with its €1.7bn agreement to transfer its controlling shareholding in Italcementi to HeidelbergCement. Other noteworthy advisers include Stefano Catenacci, Sebastiano Cassani and Nicola Brunetti, as well as Gerardo Gabrielli, Piero Albertario and Laura Ortali. Giovan Battista Santangelo is a key Rome practitioner.

Gatti Pavesi Bianchi Studio Legale Associato recently assisted Riello Group and family members on the sale of a majority stake in the company to United Technology Holdings. Milan-based Luigi Arturo Bianchi, Francesco Gatti and Andrea Giardino are recommended. Gianni Martoglia, Carlo Pavesi and Stefano Valerio are also highly rated.

At Hogan Lovells Studio Legale, Milan-based Luca Picone assisted Azienda Solare Italiana with the acquisition of two companies operating photovoltaic solar power plants. Rome-based department head Leah Dunlop and Antonio Di Pasquale are highly rated. In Milan, the ‘very accurateFrancesco Stella and head of real estate Marco Rota Candiani are also recommended.

Latham & Watkins LLP advised Alisarda – the parent company – on the sale of a 49% stake in Meridiana fly to Qatar Airways. Local department chair Stefano Sciolla is recommended along with Italy managing partner Antonio Coletti, who ‘maintains a balanced mix of legal and commercial perspectives’. Maria Cristina Storchi is also highly rated and Giovanni Sandicchi was made partner. Fabio Coppola joined LMS Studio Legale.

Studio Professionale Associato a Baker & McKenzie recently advised Taiwan-based public company Teco Electric & Machinery on the €186m acquisition of Motovario, an Italian manufacturer of industrial transmission applications. Milan-based Pietro Bernasconi and Alberto Semeria are recommended, along with Raffaele Giarda, Gianluca Benedetti and Fabio Brembati in Rome.

Recent arrival Dentons has built its practice by hiring experienced figures from the market. It is recommended for M&A, spin-offs, joint ventures and private equity or corporate investments. Practice head Stefano Speroni divides time between Milan and Rome; Luca Pocobelli in Rome is focused on the real estate, life sciences, healthcare, defence and aerospace industries. Milan-based Alessandro Dubini recently joined from Biscozzi Nobili and Rome-based Aian Abbas arrived from Ashurst.

Eversheds Sutherland Associazione Professionale stands out for its deal experience in sectors as varied as food, industrial engineering, pharmaceuticals, oil and gas, and renewable energy. The practice advised investment company, NEIP III, on its acquisition of 75% of Panificio San Francesco as well as its purchase of a stake in Pane & Co. Milan-based team head Riccardo Bianchini Riccardi, Marco Franzini and Guido Galeotti are recommended.

Jones Day welcomed Massimo Tesei from Studio Legale Carbonetti, where he was head of corporate and M&A, and Fabrizio Faina returned to Italy from the firm’s Saudi Arabia offices. ‘Excellent corporate and M&A partnerStefano Crosio worked with New York colleagues to advise Hyster-Yale Materials Handling on the acquisition of Penta Holding. Bruno Castellini is also recommended. All partners mentioned are based in Milan.

LMS Studio Legale regularly assists with M&A transactions in the manufacturing, retail trade, food, fashion, finance, telecoms, IT and energy sectors. Fabio Labruna in Milan is recommended, as is Rome-based Tommaso Amirante. The firm recently hired Fabio Coppola from Latham & Watkins LLP.

At NCTM Studio Legale, senior partner Alberto Toffoletto advised the independent directors of Pirelli on ChemChina’s reported €7.1bn acquisition takeover bid. Paolo Montironi’s ‘competence goes well beyond what clients normally expect from a lawyer’; and Pietro Zanoni is ‘a great negotiator’. Rome-based Matteo Trapani is also recommended along with head of corporate and commercial Sante Ricci and Milan-based head of M&A Simone De Carli.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe is ‘highly appreciated for its technical skills and its availability to clients’. Milan-based Alessandro De Nicola, who ‘demonstrates a rare business-oriented approach’, assisted Itab Shop Concept with its agreement to acquire La Fortezza Group. Guido Testa ‘always provides high-quality work’; Attilio Mazzilli ‘carries out each transaction in the best possible way’; and Marco Dell’Antonia is also highly rated. In Rome, Marco Nicolini is a key contact, and Betty Louie joined from DLA Piper.

Pavia e Ansaldo recently advised Xenon Private Equity on the acquisition of 60% of Surfaces Technomlogical Abrasives’ corporate capital. Milan-based Roberto Zanchi, Stefano Bianchi, Francesco Manara and Luca Cuomo are key contacts. Energy and healthcare specialist Francesco Satta joined the Rome office from DLA Piper.

Shearman & Sterling LLP’s team combines Italy and New York-qualified lawyers. Milan-based Fabio Fauceglia led advice to Dover on Dover Italy Holding’s €359m acquisition of JK Group. Tobia Croff is also recommended, as is Italian corporate head Domenico Fanuele in Rome.

At Studio Legale Associato in affiliation with Simmons & Simmons LLP, corporate head Andrea Accornero is particularly well known for private equity deals and advised Lockton, the global insurance broker, on the acquisition of P&I broker, PL Ferrari & Co. Andrea Sparano and corporate real estate expert Dario Spinella are also experienced practitioners.

White & Case (Europe) LLP’s highlights included advising De’Longhi Industrial on its approximately €508m sale of a majority stake in DeLclima, an Italian air conditioning products company. Michael Immordino, Ferigo Foscari, Leonardo Graffi and Iacopo Canino are key contacts.

At Bird & Bird, Milan-based Italy corporate head Alberto Salvadè recently assisted Generali with the corporate aspects of its acquisition of data analysis company, MyDrive Solutions. The practice also has deal experience in a broad range of industries, including life sciences, technology and communications, retail and financial services. Edoardo Courir and Stefano Silvestri are also recommended.

CMS recently advised Gruppo Corriere dello Sport (Nuova Cantelli) on the acquisition of Cantelli Rotoweb. Team head Pietro Cavasola, Marco Casasole and Matteo Ciminelli are key figures in Rome; Paolo Scarduelli and Dietmar Zischg are names to note in Milan.

Carnelutti Studio Legale Associato recruited Carlo Pappalettera from what is now known as Giliberti Triscornia e Associati to join the Milan office, where Leonardo Spina was promoted to partner. The team assisted Beckett Gas with BG International’s acquisition of Italy-based Worgas Bruciatori and its subsidiaries. Senior partner Luca Arnaboldi, Nicolò Bastianini and Alberto Rittatore Vonwiller are recommended.

De Berti Jacchia Franchini Forlani’s ‘response times are excellent’. The team assisted Dimoco Europe with the acquisition of Neomobile. In Milan, the ‘persistent and reliable’ Barbara Calza is recommended along with Marco Frazzica, who is ‘a responsive and supportive legal partner’; Gianni Forlani, Cristina Fussi, Giuseppe Cristiano, Bridget Ellison and Claudio Corba Colombo are also highly rated. Andrew Paton is a key figure in Rome.

Giliberti Triscornia e Associati is well known for its experience in M&A, private equity and public tender matters. Alessandro Triscornia regularly advises investment funds. Former name partner Carlo Pappalettera joined Carnelutti Studio Legale Associato.

Grimaldi SL LLP has a strong reputation for its experience in M&A, acquisitions of shares and assets and group reorganisations, and has particular experience in the private equity sector. Paolo Daviddi, Giovanni Bocciardo and Davide D’Angelo are recommended. Former practice head Stefano Speroni joined Dentons’ new Milan office.

La Torre Morgese Cesàro Rio’s ‘service is excellent and response times are fast’. Recent matters include Massimo La Torre assisting Royal Caribbean with the sale of RCI Cyprus, which holds stakes in certain Italian port management companies. Roberto Rio is also recommended.

McDermott Will & Emery Studio Legale Associato advised FMC Corporation, an international chemicals company, on the divestment of FMC Italy. Rome-based Massimo Trentino heads the Italy corporate practice, in which energy specialist Carsten Steinhauer, Andrea Granzotto also deserves mention, and Milan-based Giovanni Nicchiniello are other names to note.

Molinari e Associati was founded when it spun off from Lombardi Molinari Segni. Milan-based Ugo Molinari is recommended for his experience in M&A, joint ventures and real estate transactions.

Norton Rose Fulbright advised Regal Beloit on the sale of Italian manufacturing company, Costruzioni Meccaniche Legnanesi. Salvatore Iannitti was promoted to counsel. Former practice head Nicolò Juvara joined Molinari e Associati while Alessandro Monza also left the firm.

Team head Mario Ortu at Orsingher Ortu – Avvocati Associati has ‘strong business acumen’; Nicola Barra Caracciolo and Paolo Canal are also key names along with the ‘highly reliablePierfrancesco Giustiniani, who was recently hired from hi.lex. The TMT, IP and M&A-focused practice advised TXT e-solutions on the acquisition of a majority stake in PACE Aerospace Engineering and Information Technology.

Osborne Clarke is recommended for mid-market M&A. The team advised VNG Verbundnetz Gas shareholders on the sale of 50% of Bluefin. Head of transactions Riccardo Roversi, Simone Monesi, Umberto Piattelli, Giovanni Penzo and Edoardo Tedeschi are recommended.

Portolano Cavallo’s ‘approach is flexible and customised to clients’. The practice is recommended for TMT transactions; it also often assists clients from the life sciences, fashion, manufacturing, chemicals and retail industries. Francesco Portolano is ‘a very capable negotiator’ and Manuela Cavallo is also highly rated.

Santa Maria – Studio Legale Associato’s recent banking sector highlights include Luigi Santa Maria advising Swiss private bank, Cornèr Banca, on the acquisition of Diners Club Italy. Mario Santa Maria is also recommended.

Tonucci & Partners’ Rome-based Andrea Marchetti recently advised Laboratoires Urgo Group on its subsidiary AGAVE’s acquisition of Alphrema, an Italian company operating in the food supplement and medical devices market. Gianluca Cambareri is also a key name.

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