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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 the United Kingdon, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for eight years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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United Kingdom > London > Finance > Asset finance and leasing > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



Index of tables

  1. Asset finance and leasing
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals

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Next generation lawyers

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Who Represents Who

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Leveraging the firm’s strong banking ties, in addition to its wide-reaching international network, the 'responsive and knowledgeable' five-partner team at Allen & Overy LLP provides a 'very commercial perspective' across the gamut of transportation financings. Benefiting from the complementary expertise of a 'first-class' capital markets capability, in addition to other relevant areas including restructuring, tax and corporate, the team has been particularly active recently advising on many of the most complex aviation finance mandates in the market. The 'brilliant' Paul Nelson recently advised the AFIC insurer group on a novel French tax lease for two Boeing 777-FF2 aircraft on lease to Turkish Airlines and also acted for UK Export Finance and Credit Agricole on the export credit backed financing of six Boeing 787-9 aircraft to Norwegian Air Shuttle (in a deal which included the first JOLCO financing for Norwegian Air). The 'very calm and measured' Mario Jacovides recently advised HSBC and Agricultural Bank of China on the limited recourse financing for Novus of a Boeing 777 aircraft on lease to Emirates. David Smith  and Kevin Young are key practitioners within the team, particularly in relation to handling shipping and offshore financing mandates; both recently acted for Citibank on a complex financing package including high yield debt and a super senior term loan for US-listed shipping company Global Ship Lease. Other clients include Cargolux, Cathay Pacific, HSBC and Deutsche Bank. Harry Upcott  and rail expert Jonathan Bevan are also recommended at a partner level, while senior associates Linda Roxburgh  and Chris Mitchell have strong practices respectively on the shipping and aviation fronts.

Able to tap into a vast global network of offices and also benefiting from good contacts in jurisdictions where it does not have offices, Clifford Chance LLP is a popular choice for a wide range of clients including lessors, banks, funds, export credit agencies, manufacturers and operators on complex multi-jurisdictional mandates across the range of transportation asset classes. Nevertheless, the team is best-known for its track record in the aviation sector where it is able to effectively leverage the complementary expertise of the firm's leading finance, tax and capital markets prowess in particular to provide an 'excellent service' on many of the 'largest and most complex deals in the sector'. 'No-nonsense' global team head William Glaister has 'vast knowledge' of the aviation sector and recently advised BNP Paribas on the $820m debt facility for Vermillion on the financing/refinancing of a portfolio of up to 23 aircraft. As well as leading on many of the firm's biggest-ticket rail projects, Paul Carrington is also a pivotal presence on numerous major aviation finance mandates including his recent work for SMBC Aviation Capital on the $560m sale of a portfolio of 20 aircraft to Aircastle Advisor (International), on lease to 13 different airlines. The 'excellent' Oliver Hipperson primarily handles financing work in the aviation and shipping sectors. Ranbir Hunjan is also recommended.

With 20 partners primarily focused on asset finance transactions out of London and also able to tap into the expertise of practitioners in key jurisdictions including Greece, Singapore, the US and the Middle East, the 'dedicated, responsive and deal-oriented' team at¬†Norton Rose Fulbright¬†has the critical mass and bandwidth to handle a tremendous volume of deals, from the relatively commoditised to the highly structured and complex. The 'experienced and dedicated'¬†Simon Hartley¬†is appreciated by shipping clients for his 'ability to handle complex and difficult situations in a calm and pragmatic fashion'. Hartley recently advised Soci√©t√© G√©n√©rale, as facility agent, on the French ECA-supported ‚ā¨1.3bn financing to facilitate the acquisition of two Vista class cruise vessels to be constructed by STX France for MSC Cruises. On the aviation front, the 'client focused' and 'very commercial'¬†Duncan Batchelor¬†is 'always willing to go the extra mile to assist'. Recent work highlights for Batchelor include his representation of Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation and the Development Bank of Japan on the first Aircraft Finance Insurance Conortium (AFIC) insured aircraft finance transaction for a new aircraft delivery to KAL. 'Very well-known in the market',¬†Tom Johnson¬†has significant rail finance experience, both domestically and abroad; he recently acted for John Laing Infrastructure Fund¬† on its acquisition of an additional stake in the equity¬†(following on from its previous investment in rail rolling stock) of Rail Investments (Great Western). Other recommended practitioners include the 'experienced and creative'¬†Eleanor Martin, for her work in the offshore sector; shipping finance experts¬†Simon Lew¬†and¬†Harry Theochari; and¬†Owen Mulholland¬†and senior associate Will Alete,¬†for aviation finance. Other clients include Lloyds Bank, UniCredit, LOT Polish Airlines and Eversholt Rail.

'Really taking the market by storm', Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP 's two-partner team focuses on complex big-ticket mandates, where the firm can add value through its ability to leverage strong UK and US capital markets capability, as well as complementary practice areas including tax, finance and M&A. Aircraft portfolio acquisitions and disposals have been particular areas of activity; recent highlights include advising NCB Capital (DIFC) and Peregrine Aviation on the $800m acquisition of a portfolio of 21 commercial aircraft from AerCap Holdings. The 'excellent' Nick Swinburne led on this deal and is noted for his 'ability to operate at the upper ends of both the aviation and shipping markets'. 'Elder statesman' James Cameron also has a 'fantastic reputation in the market'; he recently advised Terra Firma on the sale of Dublin-based aircraft lessor AWAS to Dubai Aerospace Enterprise. Cameron is also regularly involved in complex capital markets-related aviation finance mandates including his recent work for Citi and BNP Paribas as structuring agents and bookrunners on the $722.5m asset-backed securitisation for KDAC Aviation Finance. In other work, alongside restructuring practitioners,  he acted for an ad-hoc group of lenders with $3bn debt owed by distressed offshore drilling company Ocean Rig Group under a mixture of New York-law governed term loans and bonds.  Other recommended practitioners include special counsel Richard Walton, who excels at handling complex structured finance transactions in the aviation sector, and associate Jon Cripps, who is noted for his shipping finance work. Clients include AirAsia, Apollo, Centerbridge and Doric Asset Finance.

While it remains best-known for its 'strong ship finance offering', where it acts on behalf of lenders and operators, Stephenson Harwood also continues to gain traction in the rail market and is instructed by a varied array of clients including franchise owning groups (Abellio East Anglia, Arriva Trains Wales) as well as traditional and new entrant financiers (Macquarie, Rock and Infracapital). Lisa Marks recently advised Corelink Rail Infrastructure on the financing to facilitate West Midlands Trains' purchase of over 100 new trains from Bombardier Transportation and Construcciones Y Auxiliar De Ferrocarriles SA as part of the planned upgrade for the West Midlands rail franchise. On the shipping front, the 'very talented' Ian Mace is gaining a reputation as a 'rising force' in the sector and heads a team that also includes the 'astute and technically strong' Jonathan Ward and the 'very experienced and knowledgeable' Mark Russell. Senior associate Sheila Obhrai has strong ties with numerous lenders including KfW IPEX, which she recently advised on two euro term loan facilities made available to a prominent cruise company to finance the construction in Germany and Finland of two newbuild cruise ships. Richard Parsons heads up the firm's aviation finance offering and, as well as developing a strong track record for handling aircraft portfolio acquisitions and disposals, generates a significant amount of work from asset management entities that are increasingly active in the sector as well as traditional finance providers including DVB Bank and BNP Paribas. Rail finance head Graeme McLellan is also recommended.

With 14 partners based in London with a significant focus on shipping finance matters, and also able to tap into the expertise of lawyers spread out across key maritime centres including Athens, Singapore and Hamburg,¬†Watson Farley & Williams LLP¬†is well-placed to handle many of the most significant global maritime finance mandates for an eclectic mix of owners, investors and financial institutions including Teekay, Viking Ocean Cruises, DNB and ABN Amro. 'Approachable and commercial' global head of maritime¬†Lindsey Keeble¬†recently advised H√∂egh LNG on the $230m debt financing for its eighth floating storage and regasification unit currently under construction in South Korea. Noted for his 'experience in the Scandinavian market',¬†Nigel Thomas¬†represented Carnival Cruise on an ECA-supported, unsecured ‚ā¨756.4m loan facility provided by KfW IPEX Bank and guaranteed by TopCo to finance the construction of two new cruise ships under order at Meyer Turku shipyard in Finland. The 'attentive, methodical and user-friendly'¬†Kavita Shah, 'responsive, diligent and intelligent'¬†Patrick Kirkby , and the 'excellent'¬†Richard Dibble ¬†are also recommended. Aviation finance practitioners¬†Rex Rosales¬†and Jahnavi Ramachandran¬†joined¬†Herbert Smith Freehills LLP.

Led by the 'very approachable and thorough'¬†Justin Benson,¬†White & Case LLP¬†'s three-partner team is best known for its expertise at handling new money and refinancing matters within the aviation and shipping sectors, where it benefits in particular from the ability to implement financing structures incorporating UK and US-law governed debt structures. In a deal which showcased the team's ability to work seamlessly with complementary practice areas, Benson recently worked alongside restructuring practitioners on behalf of Kenya Airways on its $2bn financial restructuring. Benson also worked alongside private equity lawyers at the firm on¬†Rh√īne Capital's $150m investment in global aviation company VistaJet. As well as her considerable aviation sector experience,¬†Alison Weal¬†also regularly handles rail and shipping finance matters including her recent high-profile work for United Arab Shipping Company on its merger with Hapag-Lloyd.¬†Adrian Beasley¬†is 'excellent at communicating complex issues', particularly as it relates to finance activity in the aviation sector. Other clients include Deutsche Bank, Euler Hermes, Nordea Bank and UK Export Finance.

Headed by the 'excellent' Paul Holland, Dentons' five-partner team provides a 'strong service' to banks, lessors, manufacturers and operators across the spectrum of transportation asset classes. Perhaps best-known, however, for its work in the aviation sector, the team has vast experience across commercial and ECA-backed financings, in addition to transactions implementing complex leasing structures. Having formerly worked in the region, a significant proportion of Holland's work relates to Middle Eastern entities, including his recent work for Emirates on a series of ten JOLCOs for Boeing 777ER aircraft and for Qatar Airways on the financing of two 747-8 Freighters by HSBC. Nick Chandler and Serge Sergiou are also noted for their aviation finance expertise, in particular, while the team is rounded out at a partner level by Greg Kahn, who has a focus on ship finance and Sarah Dyke, who is noted for her corporate jet and super yacht financing work. Clients include Société Générale, Air Nostrum, Airbus and Avolon.

A 'strong player in the aviation sector', Hogan Lovells International LLP has developed robust ties with a range of clients in the industry including operators, funds, lessors, banks, manufacturers and export credit agencies, thereby ensuring not only that it receives a significant volume of work but also that it has an excellent perspective across the market as a whole. Team head Robert Fugard handles a significant amount of work for core client Norwegian Air Shuttle ASA including acting for it on its first AFIC-backed financing of six B737Max8 aircraft and on its UK Export Finance-supported JOLCO financing of a B787-9 aircraft (the airlines' first ever JOLCO financing and the first time that a JOLCO had ever been combined with a UKEF-supported Boeing financing). Richard Goss is rapidly gaining a strong reputation in the sector and recently advised Pembroke Capital (the aviation lessor of Standard Chartered Bank) on the sale and novation to Goshawk Aviation of a portfolio of eight aircraft on lease to a number of different airlines, including Norwegian Air, South African Airways and Vueling. Outside of the aviation sector, Alexander Premont uses his expertise across many financial products to provide a very commercial service to stakeholders on new money financings and restructurings in the shipping sector; he recently advised Société Générale and a pool of lenders on the restructuring of 14 financial leases and related loan financings with the Greenship Gas group. Shalini Bhuchar is also recommended across both aviation and shipping finance work, often involving an African nexus, while Simon Gwynne has a strong reputation in the rail sector. Clients include RBS/Lombard, SMBC, Bank of China Aviation and African Export-Import Bank.

The 'hardworking and enthusiastic' two-partner team at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP has 'vast industry knowledge' in the aviation sector and provides a 'responsive service' to lessors and banks. In addition to being able to leverage a particularly strong Asian practice, the team is also able to tap into the expertise of US practitioners for financing transactions requiring New York-law governed high yield bonds. Debra Erni is 'vastly experienced in asset finance' and because of 'her exposure to a very extensive lessor client base, is also adept at commenting on emerging trends in documentation and coming up with innovative solutions'. Erni recently advised Vermillion Aviation Holdings on the purchase and leaseback to Wizz Air Hungary of twelve new Airbus A320 and 321 aircraft. Instructed by a varied array of lessors, banks and airlines, the 'excellent' Graham Tyler is also recommended; during 2017 he acted for Emirates Airline on 11 transactions for the leasing and financing of new A380 and B777 aircraft. Clients also appreciate the firm's 'adoption of the correct leveraging of senior and junior skill sets' and at an associate level, the 'diligent and patient' Rakhi Savjani and the 'responsive and diligent' Chris Knight are also recommended. Other clients include Air Lease Corporation, Deutsche Bank, Fortress Investment Group and Jackson Square Aviation.

Praised for its 'deep knowledge of the aviation sector', Bird & Bird LLP's four-partner team provides a 'very commercial service' to airlines (AirAsia, easyJet), lessors (Avolon, Aviation Capital Group) and banks (JP Morgan, Standard Chartered Bank). The 'calm and measured' Jim Bell provides 'very practical advice' across a broad range of financings within the sector including his recent representation of the ECAs (BPIFrance and SACE) and the lender (Santander) in the financing of two ATR 72-600 aircraft for Air Senegal. Bell also recently acted for Engine Lease Finance Corporation on its financing, by Wells Fargo, of a portfolio of 6 engines. Team head Paul Briggs has close ties with numerous airlines including Emirates, which he recently advised on the sale-and-leaseback of the 100th Airbus A380-842 aircraft delivered into its fleet. Consultant Robin Hallam handles both aviation and shipping finance matters.

Led by¬†Russell Clifford,¬†Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP's three-partner asset finance team is particularly accomplished at handling lessor transactions within the rail sector. Clifford recently advised Beacon Rail on JP Morgan Asset Management's ‚ā¨1bn acquisition of the Beacon Rail rolling stock leasing business from Pamplona Capital Management. As part of this deal, Clifford also acted for Beacon Rail on the whole business refinancing of the Beacon Rail group. The firm also acts as sole adviser on leasing matters to Angel Trains, with¬†Jamie Wiseman-Clarke¬†recently advising it on¬†the re-leasing of fleets of trains owned by Angel Trains and operated under various franchises. The arrival in June 2017 of¬†Jason Chamberlain from¬†Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP¬†also strengthens the firm's rail financing capability both on domestic projects, as well as internationally. On the aviation front, although the team is relatively small in London, it often works closely with lawyers on the ground in Asia and represents a mix of operators and lessors, in particular. Clients include Deutsche Bank, Montrose Global and CityJet.

Best known for its wide-ranging ship financing practice, Clyde & Co LLP provides a 'value-for-money, responsive and practical' service to owners, operators, lessees, lessors and lenders. Paul Turner handles financing work for borrowers and lenders within the cruise ship sector, including The Norwegian Cruise Line Group which he advised on orders for a new series of six luxury cruise ships to be built in European shipyards, and the related export credit agency backed financing arrangements. The firm's ship financing expertise is rounded out at a partner level by John Leonida, who excels at handling super-yacht financings, and Stuart McAlpine, who has a particular niche within the LNG sector. On the aviation finance front, as well as his business jet expertise, Mark Bisset also provides 'high-quality advice' to commercial operators including Turkish Airlines, which he recently advised on the sale and leaseback of four Boeing 737-800 aircraft and three Boeing 777-300ER aircraft from Pembroke and BOC Aviation, respectively.

Able to leverage the firm's strategic offices in Hong Kong and Athens, in particular, Reed Smith LLP's four-partner team has a longstanding pedigree in the market for providing 'commercial advice' on financings in the shipping sector. As well as work for traditional banks and operators, the team has also developed a 'strong reputation' at advising private equity funds on their acquisition of shipping assets, as well as representing them in a lending capacity. Philip Rymer and Rob Wilkins are recommended, while the return of Richard Hakes from Allen & Overy LLP in July 2017 bolsters the team, not only from a ship finance perspective - where he has particular expertise on sell-side portfolio matters - but also within the aviation sector.

Benefiting from 'in-depth industry knowledge within the aviation sector', Vedder Price's four-partner London team continues to pick up market share, and in this regard is increasingly generating its own work as opposed to merely servicing US clients from the firm's Chicago and New York offices. The 'highly experienced' Gavin Hill has an excellent reputation in the market among banks and recently advised Commerzbank, DekaBank and NordLB on the financing of the first five aircraft delivered to Singapore Airlines and financed via the German KG market. Hill also represented Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank on the $100m Etihad JOLCO financing of one Airbus A330-200F. The 'very commercial' Dylan Potter 'offers a fantastic expertise in asset finance transactions' and following his arrival in September 2017 from Allen & Overy LLP expands the scope of the team to include work across other asset classes including shipping and rail. The 'excellent' Neil Poland is also recommended for aviation finance.

Winston & Strawn London LLP recruited Mark Moody and Christopher Boresjo from Simmons & Simmons in April 2016; since their arrival the firm are picking up an increasingly high quality of work for a range of lessors, banks and airlines. As well as regularly handling work financed through commercial debt, including his ongoing representation of major leasing companies Aviation Capital Group, Moody is also noted for his 'outstanding' work on ECA-supported deals relating to South America, a region with which he has a 'very thorough knowledge'. Boresjo is advising Finnair on its fleet renewal and expansion programme involving more than 12 Airbus A320/A321 aircraft. Other clients include BNP Paribas, Natixis and AerCap.

Addleshaw Goddard is now active across all the transportation asset classes following the merger with Scottish firm HBJ Gateley (on the shipping front) and the recruitment in October 2017 of 'top-notch' rail finance practitioner Clive Smith from Osborne Clarke. In addition, the firm's longstanding aviation finance offering has been deepened and broadened following the arrival in August 2017 of Manchester-based managing associate Andrew Carswell from Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP. Carswell brings a more lessor and lender side focus to the team that, under the guidance of Rebecca Garner and Rory MacCarthy, was traditionally more aligned to serving the interests of airlines including FlyDubai and Latam Airlines. On the rail front, Smith recently acted for Arriva Trains Wales in relation to the leasing of a fleet of Class 769 units from Porterbrook, while in the maritime sector, Ed Watt recently advised Delta Marine on the acquisition of a newbuild wind farm support vessel, including interim leasing arrangements and Netherlands export credit financing structures.

Leveraging the firm‚Äôs longstanding maritime sector focus,¬†HFW¬†has a strong offering out of London on behalf of banks and shipowners, in particular. The 'excellent'¬†Tony Rice¬†is regularly involved in the most significant matters handled by the team including his recent advice to the banks including HSBC on the¬†‚ā¨295m loan to a subsidiary of Saga plc to assist in financing the acquisition of a passenger cruise vessel. Rice also acted for Eships on a $30m¬† Shari'ah compliant financing of two Korean built Medium Range product tankers. Adam Shire¬†is also a key practitioner within the team and recently represented Investec Bank restructuring of a fleet financing of six offshore support vessels. Jay Tooker¬†specialises in yacht and super yacht financings and is also a key member of the firm's transactional shipping team that also includes Elinor Dautlich. Although the firm's aviation finance capability is better known out of the firm's Asian offices, including Singapore and Hong Kong, the London team handles a significant volume of corporate and private jet financing work where Shire and senior associate¬†Barbara Pansadoro¬†are key contacts. Other clients include DVB Bank, Nordea Bank and Turkish Airlines.

Since its inception in May 2016, Holland & Knight (UK) LLP 's London office has picked up a variety of compelling instructions in the aviation sector. Able to leverage the firm's excellent pedigree in the US market, and also housing numerous well-established aviation finance practitioners (including team head Robert Ricketts), in addition to handling purely standalone mandates, the team excels at handling deals involving UK and US financing documents. In this regard, Victoria Koob - working alongside practitioners out of the US - provided UK and New York law advice to AerCap Holdings in its capacity as a borrower to finance a portfolio of up to eleven aircraft with multiple lessees. Other highlights include Ricketts' work for Oman Air on its fleet renewal of new Boeing aircraft.  Gwyn O’Flynn is also recommended for her work on behalf of lessors including AerCap Holdings and Milestone Aviation Group.

The 'client-focused' team at Ince & Co is particularly noted for its 'top-quality' advice to lenders and operators in the shipping and offshore sectors. Beatrice Russ handles a significant amount of finance work in the LNG space and recently acted for longstanding client Golar LNG on a $187m sale and leaseback of its LNG carrier. 'Knowledgeable' team head David Baker is 'very capable at handling multi-jurisdictional mandates', and recently represented private equity sponsor HIG Capital on the sale, purchase and financing of the latest addition to a fleet of chemical tankers. Will Cooper (who has now left the firm) continued to develop the firm's aviation finance offering and has handled numerous ECA-supported financings including on behalf of Atlas Air in respect of Performance and Improvement Packages for GE Engines.

Housed within the firm‚Äôs global banking group,¬†Linklaters LLP¬†'s asset finance team effectively services the firm's broader banking and funds clients, in particular, on transactions within the transportation sector. As well as being able to tap into the finance expertise of practitioners across the globe on multi-jurisdictional matters, the team also often works in collaboration with lawyers from other complementary practice areas including restructuring, capital markets and private equity. Team head¬†Olga Petrovic¬†is working alongside restructuring colleagues out of New York on the representation of¬†Credit Agricole Corporate & Investment Bank as senior secured lender, in relation to the ongoing Chapter 11 proceedings of Greek-owned shipping company Toisa. Petrovic also recently acted for the European Investment Bank on its first financing implementing its innovative ‚Äúgreen shipping‚ÄĚ credit support product¬†(a product which the firm helped to establish). Counsel¬†Andrew Penfold¬†is also a key member of the team and has a particular focus on the development and financing of offshore oil and gas assets, including production vessels. On the aviation front, as well as continuing to regularly advise on corporate and business jet financings, the firm is also picking up an increased flow of work in the commercial sector.

Spearheaded by the excellent Norman Fraser and Christopher Jackson, REN Legal's three-partner team continues to pick up a considerable amount of small to mid-ticket aviation finance work from banks (Erste Group Bank, DVB Bank) as well as aircraft and engine lessors (AerCap, Engine Lease Finance Corporation). The team is also generating more work from airlines including on behalf of new Argentinian low cost carrier, Flybondi, which Adam Longney advised on the negotiation of all its leases to-date for its fleet of Boeing 737-800 aircraft.

One of the market leaders for rail financing work, Bristol-based Burges Salmon LLP advises borrowers and lessors on many of the most significant mandates in the domestic market. Team head Brioney Thomas has a very strong reputation among train operating companies, including West Midlands Trains, which she recently advised on the procurement of a new £680m fleet of CAF and Bombardier trains for the West Midlands franchise. As part of her broader banking practice, Rachael Ruane also regularly handles asset finance transactions, while Simon Coppen handles financing and corporate matters as part of his overarching rail practice. Other clients include Abbellio Transport Holdings, First MTR South Western Trains and First TransPennine Express.

Led by Keith Wilson  , the 'responsive' aviation finance team at CMS acts for banks, lessors and investors on the acquisition, disposal, financing and leasing of aircraft, helicopters, aircraft engines and aircraft spare parts. Recent highlights include advising ICBC Financial Leasing on the leasing of three Airbus A320 aircraft to easyJet and acting for Bank of Communications Financial Leasing as purchaser and lessor on the sale and leaseback of four Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft from Icelandair. Senior associate Rachael Visick often assists Hong Kong-based asset finance global head Tim Elliott on shipping and offshore-related financings.

With three partners based in London who devote a considerable amount of their time to asset finance work and also able to tap into the firm's huge international network,¬†DLA Piper¬†is a good choice for clients engaged in the cross-border financing of transportation assets. Spearheaded by¬†Richard Skipper, the team is particularly strong at handling work within the aviation sector on behalf of a diverse array of clients including airlines (Etihad, Flybe), banks (Lloyds, Bank of London Middle East) and lessors (AviaAM Financial Leasing China). In a deal which involved a co-ordinated approach from several offices including Paris, Moscow, New York and Shanghai, Skipper led on the representation of AviaAM on the $500m financing and leasing of 8 new Airbus A320.¬†Alan Cunningham¬†leads the firm's global asset finance practice and as part of his own broad-ranging practice regularly handles aviation and shipping finance matters, including recently acting for ABN Amro in relation to the stage payment and post-delivery financing of a ‚ā¨40m Damen newbuild operation support vessel. US-qualified capital markets partner¬†Tony Lopez¬†has expertise advising on aircraft portfolio securitisations.

Hill Dickinson LLP is 'excellent at shipping finance and commercial matters' and provides a 'knowledgeable and responsive service' to borrowers and lenders including JP Morgan, Investec, Oman Shipping Company and Intership. 'Excellent all-rounder' Roderick Palmer provides 'very sensible and cost-effective advice' and is a key member of the team that also includes Panos Pourgourides, who has a strong reputation for advising ultra-high-net-worth individuals and lenders on superyacht and corporate jet financings.

Often working closely with lawyers from other international offices at the firm, K&L Gates LLP 's two-partner team has a focus on commercial and private jet aviation financings for lenders, lessors and operators. The team acts for a raft of low cost airlines including Cebu Pacific and SpiceJet and recently advised the latter on the $1.6bn acquisition of 50 Bombardier Q400 aircraft. Sidanth Rajagopal was involved in this transaction and much of his work has a nexus to the Middle East, South Asian and Africa markets. Philip Perrotta is also recommended and recently acted for new aircraft leasing company, Angelica Aircraft Assets, on the $130m operating lease financing of two A321 aircraft. Other clients include Alchemy Partners, flydubai, SriLankan Airlines and Solenta.

Now headed by Lara Burch following the departure of Clive Smith   to Addleshaw Goddard in November 2017, Osborne Clarke's team is well-equipped to handle rail finance transactions, particularly in light of Burch's strong relationships with clients including Eversholt Rail Group and Porterbrook. Recent highlights include advising XC Trains on all rolling stock-related aspects of its recent Direct Award to continue operation of the CrossCountry passenger rail franchise, including the leasing, maintenance and depot arrangements for all of its train fleets.

Although it lacks a discrete asset finance offering, numerous practitioners within¬†Slaughter and May's banking and finance team handle financing work in the transportation sector.¬†Robert Byk¬†regularly advises Orient Overseas (one of the world's largest integrated international container transportation and logistics companies) on its ship financing arrangements ‚Äď these include frequent financings for significant container vessels and also structured finance relating to leasing and other arrangements.¬†Andrew Johnson¬†is also recommended and regularly handles finance and leasing work for British Airways, First Reserve and Rolls-Royce.

At Fieldfisher, Andrew Evans handles a considerable amount of asset finance work (including in relation to corporate jets and super yachts) by dint of his work on behalf of the private wealth divisions of numerous international investment banks. Evans recently acted for JP Morgan on the $53.2m pre-delivery financing of a new Gulfstream G650ER Aircraft.

Despite the departure of Chris McClure to the in-house legal department of Porterbrook Leasing in February 2018, Shoosmiths LLP still handles a significant amount of finance work in the rail industry largely as a result of Martin Fleetwood's reputation in the sector. Southampton-based senior associate Sarah Fairweather also regularly handles rail finance work, as well as work in the aviation sector. Clients include Hitachi Rail Europe, Stagecoach Group and Porterbrook Leasing.

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