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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 > Commodities: derivatives > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

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Index of tables

  1. Commodities: derivatives
  2. Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Hall of Fame

  1. 1

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next generation lawyers

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Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Commodities: derivatives clients in London 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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Reed Smith LLP has one of the strongest and largest energy derivatives trading practices in London, and provides 'a good blend of cerebral and commercial advice', with 'the ability to think laterally about problems'. It is also described as 'very user-friendly and well-priced for the quality of work and level of engagement'. The practice's 'consistently strong bench' includes some of the leading names in the market such as practice head Prajakt Samant; 'excellent problem solver' Claude Brown, who has 'a great combination of deep experience, a formidable intellect and a strong commercial and practical sense'; Chris Borg, who has 'a deep knowledge of commodity derivatives and their regulation, and is truly an expert in his field'; and Brett Hillis, who has 'great regulatory knowledge and the ability to apply it to very complex deals in a practical and efficient way'. Senior associate Simone Goligorsky is a rising star who advises banks, hedge funds, utilities and energy and commodity companies on transactional, cross-border regulatory, compliance and risk management matters.

At Shearman & Sterling LLP, 'response times are excellent and the team offers pragmatic advice and excellent industry knowledge'. The commodity derivatives practice has established itself as the market leader in the areas of exchanges and clearing. its relationship with ICE Clear Europe Limited and ICE Futures Europe sees it act for the biggest exchange clearing group for commodities on matters such as new products, disputes, rulebooks and collateral issuance. The key names in the practice are the ICE relationship partners Barney Reynolds and Thomas Donegan. Reynolds, who is head of the global financial institutions advisory and regulatory group, advises financial institutions, financial infrastructure providers, hedge funds, banks, and corporates on non-contentious matters including regulatory compliance. He assisted ICE Futures Europe with updating its exchange rules in light of MiFID II and MiFIR. Donegan acted for BTG Pactual Group on MiFID II compliance. Derivatives specialists Patrick Clancy and James Duncan are also recommended. The practice counts Abu Dhabi Global Market, Bahrain Petroleum Company, Dow Chemical, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation and Japan Bank for International Cooperation among its clients.

Ashurst has a broad derivatives and structured finance practice in which commodities are key asset classes. Newly promoted partner Kerion Ball frequently advises both banks and buy-side clients. He recently assisted an independent oil and gas producer with an innovative deal-contingent commodity price hedging arrangement in the context of a reserve-based lending facility and a related acquisition of oil production assets. He also acted for a multiseller ABCP conduit issuer‎ in a series of metals inventory financing transactions. Jonathan Haines is a widely respected OTC derivatives expert who acts for leading dealers and frequently advises on the impact of new regulations including margin rules for non-cleared derivatives. He recently helped a major investment bank to set up a cross-asset swap framework agreement to enable clients to provide exposure to commodities and equity asset classes. Derivatives specialist James Coiley  counts leading banks such as BNP Paribas and Credit Suisse among his clients. Energy, resources and infrastructure partner Antony Skinner is also recommended.

Fieldfisher has a highly regarded derivatives practice that covers a wide range of asset classes, among which commodities are a major component. The practice handles futures and other on-exchange transactions as well as OTC derivatives relating to underlying assets such as metals, petroleum, electricity, freight and weather. The firm is widely recognised for its expertise in mining and metals, though it has become  increasingly active in oil, oil products, gas, LNG and power. Its client base encompasses banks and broker dealers, as well as non-financial end users, for which it handles both transactional matters such as the negotiating of trades, clearing and on-boarding documentation, advisory work on the impact of UK and European legislation on trading arrangements, and contentious matters. Guy Usher leads the derivatives and energy trading practice, in which structured finance specialist Luke Whitmore, securitisation and trade finance expert Dougall Molson, derivatives partnerEdward Miller , regulatory partner Azad Ali and litigator Duncan Black stand out. Ali recently assisted Triland Metals with the interpretation of market abuse regulations in relation to intra-group derivatives transactions on the LME.

The commodities practice at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe (Europe) LLP focuses mainly on the energy sector, in which is has built a strong team in London during the last three years that has simultaneously grown its client base of major trading houses, financial institutions and energy companies. Among these are Axpo Trading, Trailstone, ENGIE Global Markets, Castleton Commodities and SOCAR Trading. Its work for these clients encompasses the establishment of trading platforms, trade documentation, dispute resolution, structured trading, trade finance and regulatory advice. The practice is 'very responsive, has very good industry knowledge and knows the LNG market', remarks one client. Matthew Williams, who 'has an ability to untangle complex matters into easily understandable topics', and Edward Humphries co-lead the practice. Humphries advised JPMorgan on its acquisition of Barclays Bank's European and US energy trading portfolio. Oil and energy trading specialist Peter Roberts 'has long experience,  having been general counsel in a utility before, and he understands the demands of clients'. Of counsel Joanna Kay and regulatory partner Elisabeth Blunsdon are also recommended.

The derivatives practice at Clifford Chance LLP is part of a banking group that is seen as one of the leaders in hedging and structured finance matters. Derivatives specialists Habib Motani, Matthew Grigg and Paget Dare Bryan all have significant expertise in the sector and frequently advise on physically and financially settled derivatives contracts in OTC, securitised and exchange-traded form, as well as other commodity-linked instruments in Islamic finance and carbon-linked bonds. Emerging markets experts Leonard Cleland, who advised Société Générale as documentation agent on a $240m pre-export financing facility for members of the Metalloinvest Group secured over coking coal and pig iron export contracts, and Logan Wright play key roles in the practice. Oil and gas specialist Russell Wells frequently advises trading house Glencore on derivatives as part of structured and trade finance deals, which last year included a $1.2bn secured borrowing base facility relating to global metals inventories.

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP has a renowned expert in commodity derivatives in Paul Sinnott, who advises numerous traders of crude oil, oil products and metals on both OTC and on-exchange trading. His work includes assisting clients with exchange deal documentation for ICE and LME trades. Clients are 'very impressed with the firm's solutions-oriented approach',  with one remarking that he 'always goes back to the team for the depth of its knowledge; it rates much better than a Magic Circle firm for a top partner with real experience of trading'. The practice counts several large corporates in the natural resources business among its clients, and it frequently acts for large trading houses based in Geneva. Jenni Lajzerowicz joined Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP.

HFW has a bench of lawyers whose expertise covers both physical commodities and derivatives trades. Litigator Brian Perrott has more than 30 years' experience in disputes including those arising from commodity derivatives transactions. Sarah Taylor is highly experienced in both physical and derivative commodity contracts, particularly those relating to energy and metals, as well as handling contentious matters. Damian Honey advises commodity traders, producers, financiers and insurers on all aspects of their business, including disputes arising from energy and metals  derivatives trades. Adam Topping and Judith Prior  also have experience in derivatives. The firm counts trading houses Vitol and Trafigura among its clients, as well as large corporates including BP and ENI, and banks such as JPMorgan and Goldman Sachs.

Linklaters LLP has a market-leading energy, natural resources and mining practice across its international office network, which leads to a steady flow of commodities work in both physical and derivatives markets. Co-head of the global commodities group Chris Staples handles both physical and derivatives trades for some of the world's largest financial institutions. He recently acted for Barclays Bank in the disposal of its commodities trading book, particularly in relation to its non-core crude oil, refined oil, petrochemicals, natural gas liquids and natural gas transactions. The deal involved a portfolio sale agreement and a total return swap covering transactions held on commodities exchanges, as well as OTC derivatives. He also handled Noble Clean Fuels Limited's sale of its physical and financial power and gas book, which included structuring and managing the sale, and a total return swap.

Norton Rose Fulbright is a strong player in the structured trade and commodity finance market, which requires significant expertise in commodity derivatives. The firm advises banks, development finance institutions, traders, producers and exporters in a broad range of commodities markets. Jonathan Herbst is global head of financial services and frequently advises on regulatory matters affecting trading, custody and clearing. Hannah Meakin is also recommended for advice on custody, brokerage and clearing. Daniel Franks has extensive experience in OTC derivatives and structured products, and handles commodity derivatives as part of structured trade finance transactions. The firm counts BTG Commodities (UK), Cargill and JPMorgan among its clients.

Simmons & Simmons has a global presence in the commodities market and a highly rated derivatives practice based in London, which combine to give it a strong flow of mandates from both buy-side and sell-side clients, as well as market infrastructure providers. It is a frequent advisor to many of the world's leading banks and commodity traders, as well as prominent players in the European hedge fund industry. Its work encompasses trading in metals, bullion and energy alongside other commodities. The key names in the practice are Rosali Pretorius, who is an expert in regulatory matters, and Jonathan Melrose, who commodities and energy trading and finance practice group, and who specialises in European regulation on trading, clearing and settlement, asset management and market conduct. Darren Fox is also recommended for his knowledge of hedge fund manager regulation, exchange-traded derivatives and banking regulation.

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