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Corporate and commercial: Edinburgh and Glasgow

Index of tables

  1. Corporate and commercial: Edinburgh and Glasgow
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next generation lawyers

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Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Corporate and commercial: Edinburgh and Glasgow clients in Scotland 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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Brodies LLP 's team combines 'expertise, knowledge, people skills and attention to detail to ensure that the deal is completed in a timely manner'. Shuna Stirling  leads the group, which includes 'real no-nonsense commercial lawyer' Neil Burgess and Julian Voge. Other names to note include William McIntosh, Derek Stroud (who focuses on the renewable energy and oil services sectors), food and drink group head Eric Galbraith and associate Liz Bruce. The firm handles a broad cross-section of mandates for Scottish, UK and international clients; its varied workload includes acquisitions and disposals, MBOs, joint ventures, restructurings and commercial contracts matters. Illustrative of the firm's excellent record in high-profile and landmark deals, in 2017, Stirling, Roger Cotton and associate Alasdair Dunn acted for Abellio in the sale of a 40% stake in the Greater Anglia rail franchise to Mitsui & Co., and also in new joint venture arrangements between Abellio and Mitsui. Burgess was the lead adviser to City Facilities Management Group on its strategic acquisition of Maintenance Management and Atrium Maintenance France, as part of the client's European expansion plans. McIntosh led a cross-practice team, which assisted Energy Services Group (which is backed by Accel-KKR) with its acquisition of Utiligroup, and with the related funding aspects of the deal. Martin Sloan has particular expertise in technology procurement (particularly in the financial services sector), IT outsourcing and data protection.

Burness Paull LLP has an outstanding track record in big-ticket cross-border transactions, as was demonstrated in 2017, when Walter Clark, senior associate Catriona Llanwarne and others acted as UK counsel to The Weir Group Plc in its acquisition of Singapore-headquartered KOP Surface Products from Akastor. Corporate finance head Chris Gotts recently led a team, which acted as UK principal legal counsel to AIM-listed Savannah Petroleum in a $270m reverse takeover transaction; the deal involved the client acquiring oil and gas assets in Nigeria from Seven Energy International, and undertaking a $125m equity fundraising. Corporate practice head Peter Lawson, senior solicitors Emma Fraser and Charles Rogers and others have been assisting Standard Life Aberdeen’s financial planning business 1825 Financial Planning Limited with a series of strategic acquisitions as part of its UK-wide expansion. Mark Ellis is equally strong in M&A and private equity deals. Robert Burns is another recommended individual in the team, whose other clients include Arran Aromatics, Maven Capital Partners, BlueGem Capital Partners, i3 Energy Plc and Brown-Forman Group.

CMS¬†demonstrates ‚Äėstrong commercial acumen and a high level of professionalism‚Äė in transformational deals involving sectors such as energy, financial services, leisure, corporate real estate and TMT, among others. The firm is among the market leaders in Scotland for M&A, private equity and equity capital markets transactions. In addition, it enhanced its footprint in the UK and internationally, following the merger with Nabarro and Olswang in May 2017. Recent highlights included Graeme Bruce¬†acting for Smart Metering Systems Plc in the ¬£150m accelerated bookbuild placing of ordinary shares on the AIM market, and¬†Kenneth Rose¬†and others assisting GYG Plc with its ¬£46.6m AIM IPO. Rose also acted for Sportech Plc in its court-approved ¬£55m reduction of share capital. ‚ÄėRising star‚Äė Jack Letson¬†led a cross-practice team, which advised Northern Ireland Water on the acquisition of a group of companies comprising the Project Alpha Public Private Partnership from Kelda Group. The group‚Äôs list of standout partners also includes¬†Wendy Colquhoun, Amanda Methven,¬†Stuart Maclean,¬†Ailsa Ritchie¬†and David Davidson, among many others.¬†¬†Colin Lawrie¬†heads up the practice, which saw Duncan Turner¬†make partner.

Corporate boutique Dickson Minto WS has established a reputation as a powerhouse for corporate and private equity transactions, thanks to the experience of its team, which fields seven specialist partners. Key figures are Bruce Minto, Andrew Todd, Colin MacNeill, Ewan Gilchrist, John Pentland, Duncan Christison and Andrew Nicolson. The firm is particularly strong in cross-border deals, including those involving North American investors/acquirers. In 2017, highlights included acting for Charles River Laboratories in its acquisition of KWS Biotest, and advising Barings LLC on the sale of its majority stake in Wireless Infrastructure Group to 3i Infrastructure Plc. The firm has also recently acted for clients such as Dunedin LLP, Verisk Analytics and Souter Investments.

Pinsent Masons LLP, whose team is led by Barry McCaig, has ‚Äėstrength throughout the team‚Äė, and is valued by clients for its ‚Äėability to pull in sector experts to fit each deal‚Äė. It provides the full spectrum of advice on high-profile and high-value M&A and joint ventures, debt and equity capital markets transactions, and private equity deals. Its list of blue-chip clients includes Skycanner, Iomart Plc and Lloyds Development Capital. In the oil and gas sector, in 2017,¬†Rosalie Chadwick, senior associate¬†Brian Thumath¬†and others acted for Ithaca Energy in its $1.24bn takeover by Israeli energy and infrastructure conglomerate Dalek. In another standout matter, Alan Diamond¬†led a team, which included ‚Äėcompletely unflappable‚Äė¬†Jennifer Malcolm¬†and Chadwick, in the advice to Scottish housebuilder Springfield Properties on¬† its ¬£87m AIM IPO. Kevin Devanny¬†acts for clients such as AGS Airports and JZ Capital. Senior associate Kevin Beattie¬†is another key figure.

Shepherd and Wedderburn‚Äės team, which ‚Äėunderstands the bigger picture in terms of business consequences‚Äė, includes a number of first-rate practitioners, such as food and drink group head George Frier¬†and Joanna Boag-Thomson, who are ‚Äėcommercial, innovative and provide great client service‚Äė. In addition, Danny Lee¬†and John Morrison¬†‚Äėunderstand points easily and their drafting is high quality‚Äė and senior associate¬†Tom Swan¬†is lauded for his ‚Äėattention to detail‚Äė. Stephen Trombala¬†leads the group, which is adept in transactions spanning a wide range of industries, including food and drink, renewable energy, corporate real estate, oil and gas (upstream and services sectors), technology and life sciences. It consistently excels in headline deals; in 2017, highlights included Frier and others acting as the lead legal adviser to Chivas Brothers (part of the Pernot Ricard Group) in the sale to the Glenallachie consortium of its Glenallachie distillery, and certain whisky stock and whisky brands. Frier also led a team in the advice to Collagen Solutions on its ¬£8m placing and open offer, and also on a ¬£4m bond issue. Morrison assisted TVSquared (one of Scotland‚Äôs most successful recent start-up companies) with its $6.5m series A equity financing. Also recommended are¬†George Boyle,¬†Andrew Blain,¬†Paul Hally,¬†Keir Willox,¬†Joanna Monaghan¬† and¬†Ian Mitchell.

Dentons¬†established a presence in Scotland following a merger with Scottish firm Maclay Murray & Spens LLP in October 2017. In addition to being embedded in the Scottish and wider UK market, the combined entity has a notable international reach as well. A significant proportion of the firm‚Äôs work has a cross-border component; in 2017,¬†Brian Moore, director Donald Smith¬†and others were part of a team which assisted Aberdeen Asset Management with its ¬£11bn merger with Standard Life . Moore and Smith were also among the advisers to QUIZ Plc on its ¬£200m AIM IPO. Other key figures include Derek McCombe¬†and senior associate Kimberley Goh, (she is ‚Äėvery good at taking the lead and coordinating all aspects of a transaction‚Äė) who advised US-headquartered group Kaiam Corporation on the sale of Kaiam Laser Limited to II-VI Incorporated. The firm also handled mandates for Highland Distillers, Argenta and Johnson Controls. Guy Norfolk¬†(who splits his practice between London and Edinburgh), Claire Armstrong¬†and Owen McLennan¬†are increasingly active in transactional and advisory matters in the fintech sector. Michael Livingston, Iain Sutherland, and Bill Fowler¬†are other seasoned practitioners.¬†David McGrory¬†is ‚Äėcommercially aware and realistic‚Äė.

Addleshaw Goddard¬†entered the Scottish market in 2017, following a merger with HBJ Gateley. Its ‚Äėhigh quality team‚Äė¬†acts for a broad base of clients, including high-growth companies, private equity houses, management teams and investee companies. In addition, the firm acts for circa 40% of the FTSE 100 companies, many of which have operations in Scotland. In a recent highlight, a team led by Anna Brown¬†acted for The City Pub Group Plc in its ¬£96m IPO and AIM admission. Practice head David Kirchin, who ‚Äėbrings a calming influence in the heat of negotiations‚Äė, and managing associate Laura Falls¬†were part of a cross-practice team which assisted private equity sponsor Cairngorm Capital II and its acquisition vehicle Cairngorm Acquisitions III Midco Limited with the acquisition of Scottish timber merchant Thornbridge Sawmills Limited. Andrew Ley¬†has deal experience in the food and drink sector, while David Horne¬†specialises in corporate transactions involving industries such as real estate, hospitality and technology. Another name to note is David Anderson, who is particularly active in the Scottish digital and fintech sectors.

DLA Piper Scotland LLP‚Äės practice, which is led by Simon Rae, covers a broad spread of UK and international transactions, such as M&A, joint ventures, restructurings, and public and private fundraisings. A particular area of strength of the firm is in private equity deals, where the firm acts for clients such as Scottish Equity Partners, Proprium Capital and Vespa Capital. In a particularly high-profile matter, in 2017, McRae was the lead adviser to the vendors and to BrewDog Plc on the ¬£213m acquisition of shares of and investment in BrewDog by TSG Consumer Partners. Rae, who has a particularly strong reputation handling deals involving the energy and technology industries, also worked with legal director Andrew Wardrop¬†and others to advise longstanding client¬†Energy Ventures on the institutional buyout of Aquaterra Energy Limited. Rae and Wardrop also coordinated and worked with other offices in the firm‚Äôs network to handle the global reorganisation of Marsh & McLennan.

Led by Wayne Lawrence, DWF‚Äės team undertakes the gamut of domestic and cross-border corporate transactions for Scottish, UK and international clients. The firm, which is active across many sectors, particularly stands out for its work in industries such as hospitality and leisure, retail, energy and utilities, sports, and food and drink.¬†Its first-rate reputation sees it generate work from notable clients such as Custodian REIT Plc, Scottish Power and Exova. In 2017, Glasgow executive partner Paul Pignatelli, director Tom Maxwell¬†and¬†Colin Miller¬†were among the team which acted for Capita Plc in the restructuring and subsequent disposal of CER Staffing Solutions (and its subsidiaries)¬†to Endless Fund IV. Another highlight involved advising Edwin James Holdings Limited on its ¬£24m acquisition of WT Parker Holdings Limited. Damien Bechelli, Gary MacDonald, and senior associates Kirsty Smith¬†and Rachel Gervaise, are other active practitioners in the team.

Harper Macleod LLP‚Äės varied practice sees it undertake a mix of purely Scottish and cross-border transactions. It has a particularly strong client following of family-owned and owner-managed businesses, ranging from SMEs to multinational companies. In addition, as the exclusive legal services provider in Scotland to Scottish EDGE and Entrepreneurial Spark (among other clients), the firm generates a significant amount of work from early-stage and high-growth companies; members of the team assist clients with all aspects of obtaining investments, managing growth strategies and exit events. Work for overseas investors is another cornerstone of the practice. Food and drink group head¬†Scott Kerr, who has ‚Äėvery wide-ranging expertise‚Äė, is ‚Äėcalm under pressure‚Äė. In 2017,¬†Donald Munro, James MacGregor, solicitor Paul Macdonald¬†and others acted for owner-managed Scottish accountancy practice Campbell Dallas in its acquisition by England-based The Baldwins Group. James MacGregor¬†was the lead adviser to KKR-backed Webhelp (a Scotland-headquartered global business process outsourcer) on the creation of a joint venture vehicle, Go Beyond Services Limited. Stephen Chan¬†led a multidisciplinary team which assisted Dundee Energy Recycling with its acquisition by MVV Environment. Paula Skinner¬†and others acted for the majority shareholders of Brightwork in the sale of the company to Staffline Plc. North of Scotland team head¬†Chris Kerr¬†divides time between the Inverness and Glasgow offices, as does Craig McKerracher. Tom Thomas,¬†Jamie Watt¬†and¬†David Kaye are also recommended.

MacRoberts LLP¬†‚Äėcombines legal expertise with commercial oversight right throughout the team‚Äė, which is reflected in its work for clients ranging in size from family-owned businesses and SMEs to Scotland-headquartered listed companies. Although the firm is primarily active in the Scottish market, it is increasingly sought-after to advise on UK wide and international transactions. Its first-rate team includes¬†Michael Kelly¬†and associate¬†Victoria McMurray, who acted for Idox Plc in its acquisition of Halarose in 2017. Another key figure is¬†Neil Kennedy, who led a cross-practice team (which included members of the pensions, employment, property and tax practices) to advise the vendors on the sale of Morrison‚Äôs Garage Limited and Morrisons (Land Rover) Limited to John Clark Motor Group. Another headline deal saw Alan Kelly, Bonar Mercer¬†and others assist high-growth educational software company Sumdog with obtaining a ¬£1.4m investment from NESTA Impact Investments. David Wylie¬†is another name to note in the group, which is led by Kennedy. Legal director¬†Louise Mahon¬†recently joined from Brodies LLP.

Anderson Strathern¬†is ‚Äėan excellent firm to work with, in terms of the quality of its work and its team‚Äôs understanding of client issues‚Äė. Among other matters, its recent work has included transactions involving transitions into employee ownership; in 2017,¬†¬†Bruce Farquhar¬†and senior associate¬†Ewan Regan¬†handled a number of related deals for clients such as Paramount Care and Mediascape. Elsewhere, Farquhar, practice head¬†Simon Brown¬†and¬†Nicholas Howie¬†were part of a cross-practice team which advised longstanding client Blumerang Capital on its acquisition of G2 Energy Renewable Developments. John Martin Group, INEOS Chemicals Grangemouth, Rangers International Football Club and Buchan Biogas are among other clients.¬†John Kerr¬†has more than 30 years of corporate law experience, with particular expertise in third sector and international work. Another seasoned practitioner is¬†Colin Young, who has a particularly strong track record advising multinational companies on commercial contracts issues.

Bellwether Green¬†has ‚Äėa strong reputation for quality, responsive advice and value for money‚Äė, according to its clients. Notwithstanding the small size of its team, it provides ‚Äėthe same expertise as at larger firms, but within a more personal environment and at more competitive rates‚Äė.¬†Practice head April Bingham¬†and senior associate Stephanie Farrell¬†are ‚Äėstraight-talking, provide commercial solutions and are excellent networkers‚Äė. A recent highlight involved acting for the shareholders of IDS Data Services Limited (t/a Intelligent Data Group) in the sale of the company to an England-based data and marketing group which is backed by US private equity investors. In another matter, the team advised the management team in the MBO of One Financial Planning Limited. Harper Bell, Proficio and Safesol are recent client wins.

BTO Solicitors LLP's team undertakes a wide variety of corporate transactions, including acquisitions and disposals, joint ventures and company restructurings. In addition, it advises on investment agreements, shareholder agreements and corporate governance issues, among other matters. The firm has a diverse client following, which includes sole traders and Scottish SMEs, as well as UK and international businesses. In the construction sector, Scott Wyper and senior solicitor Emma Barclay acted for Lifting Gear Hire Limited in its £1.7m acquisition of a competitor's business and assets in 2017. The firm generates work from clients across many other industries, including energy, food and drink, and travel and leisure. Wyper and practice head Jeremy Glen are two of the six partners in the team, with the other names being Andrew Sleigh, Alastair Dunn, Gary Booth and Patrice Fabien.

At Davidson Chalmers LLP, ‚Äėthe level of service is excellent, as is the quality and commerciality of advice‚Äė. In the corporate real estate sphere, team head Craig Stirling¬†advised Palm Capital and Guernsey-based CL Selby Holdings Limited on the latter‚Äôs ¬£16.1m acquisition of DV4 Properties Orchard Brae Company Limited (a special purpose vehicle owning a substantial office premises in Edinburgh) from a vendor based in the British Virgin Islands. Stirling also acted for Sapphire Energy Limited (a subsidiary of Guinness Asset Management) in the acquisition of the business and assets of the Glassburn hydroelectric scheme. Elsewhere, and in addition to handling renewable energy sector transactions, Stirling has a particularly strong track record of handling M&A deals in the healthcare industry, including those involving medical practices, care homes, opticians and pharmacists. Stuart Duncan¬†is particularly experienced in acting for family-owned businesses.

Gillespie Macandrew LLP provides the full spectrum of corporate law advice to public and private sector clients (of a range of sizes) from a variety of sectors; associate Chris Gibson is particularly active in acting for start-up and early stage technology sector companies in all areas of their lifecycle. The firm particularly stands out in the renewable energy sector, where it assists start-up and emerging companies with negotiating inward investments, joint ventures for renewables projects and other land-based development transactions. In 2017, energy and strategic land group head Derek Mcculloch, Amy McDowell and Michael Cox were among the advisers to Rio Tinto on the £330m sale of its Alcan Aluminium business to SIMEC. Food and drink and retail are among other industries where the team generates work. Gibson, McCulloch and team head Christopher Smith are dual-qualified in Scottish and English law. Senior solicitor Jennie Elliot is another key figure.

The team at Lindsays¬†provides ‚Äėreal clarity on what are often complex questions‚Äė. Notable individuals in the group, which is led by David Wood, include¬†Douglas Roberts¬†(‚Äėalways wholly professional‚Äė) and senior associate Alastair Smith¬†(‚Äėtactically aware to deliver an agreed result in the quickest possible timescale‚Äė). Claire McCracken¬†and Peter Tweedie¬†(who splits his practice between Dundee and Edinburgh) are also recommended. The firm has made a particular name for itself in the healthcare sector where, in 2017, a highlight involved advising University of Glasgow spinout Causeway Therapeutics on a ¬£1m investment round. The firm also recently handled mandates involving veterinary practices, pharmacists and dental practices. In addition to the healthcare sector, it also excels in acting for investors and technology-focused investee companies in venture capital and angel investment transactions involving other industries, such as renewable energy and IT.¬† The team acted for Archangels as the lead investor in pump technology firm WaveLIFT. In a deal significant to Scotland‚Äôs growing video games industry, a highlight involved acting for Leslie Benzies in a six-figure investment in Edinburgh-based audio technology company Krotos. Elsewhere, the team advises family businesses and SMEs on corporate governance, commercial contracts and succession planning (including employee ownership) issues. Consultant David Dunsire¬†joined in January 2018 from Shepherd and Wedderburn, while former David Lindgren recently retired from private practice.

Macdonald Henderson¬†delivers ‚Äėpractical, to-the-point advice without burdening the client with the legal minutiae‚Äė. The firm‚Äôs first-rate reputation enables it to attract high-profile deals, as was illustrated in 2017, when David Beveridge¬†(‚Äėquickly ascertains the key issues to address‚Äė) and ‚Äėexceptional‚Äė¬†Fraser Morrison¬†acted for The Glenallachie Distillers Company Limited in its headline acquisition of the Glenallachie Distillery from Pernod Ricard. In addition, Beveridge, solicitor Alasdair Swanson¬†and others advised the owners of Lethington Leisure Limited on its ¬£10.5m sale to The Brighton Pier Group Plc. The firm also handled matters for various other clients, including Old College Capital, Lifelinked Limited and Logos Logistics.¬†Beveridge leads the team, which handles a mix of purely Scottish and cross-border M&A, private equity deals and MBOs, among other matters.

Under Kenny Mumford‚Äės leadership, MBM Commercial¬† has become a major player in the angel investment and venture capital arena, where it acts for investors and high-growth investee companies. The firm is particularly well-known for its work in the technology sector (it has been active in the Scottish technology investment market for more than 12 years); it recently acted as lead adviser on the formation of Scotland‚Äôs first pre-seed tech accelerator, Seed Haus.¬† The form also has a significant client following in other industries, including life sciences and food and drink. Tracey Ginn¬†acted for TravelNest Limited in a ¬£3m fundraise involving Pentech Ventures and other investors. Mumford advised Roslin Technologies Limited on the establishment and launch of an animal health services joint venture with the University of Edinburgh. Stuart Hendry¬†acts for clients such as Dawnfresh Seafoods, Celtic Renewables and Mercia Technologies. Senior associate Laura Peachey¬†is recommended.

Morton Fraser‚Äės ‚Äėvery supportive and knowledgeable‚Äė team handles a full range of corporate and commercial matters for owner-managed and family businesses, entrepreneurs, private equity investors and investees, and listed companies, among other clients. In addition to advising Scottish clients, it also acts for clients located in the UK and further afield overseas. The firm is currently advising Guardhouse Studios on the financing and construction of a purpose-built film studio in Scotland; Austin Flynn¬†is advising on the corporate aspects of this matter. Flynn also acted for Cognitive Geology Limited in the negotiation of a ¬£2m equity investment by Maven Capital Partners, Enso Ventures and Scottish Enterprise. Iain Meiklejohn¬†is particularly experienced in transactions involving regulated or regulatory entities; ‚Äėhe has seen so much and can recommend bold and innovative solutions with confidence‚Äė.¬†¬†In recent developments,¬†Paul Geoghegan¬†made partner and Melanie Schwindt¬†was promoted to senior associate, while Joyce White has retired from private practice. The team also includes Adrian Bell, Iain Young¬†and senior associate¬†Callum Murray.

Shoosmiths¬†has ‚Äėscaled up to form a competitive offering in the marketplace‚Äė, making it a strong choice for Scottish and cross-border transactions. Its team works equally effectively on a standalone basis and as part of a wider UK group. Practice head Alison Gilson¬†is ‚Äėalways client-focused and has a knack of not over-complicating the issues‚Äė, while associate¬†Jen Paton¬†is ‚Äėvery proactive‚Äė and ‚Äėgets the job done with a minimum of fuss‚Äė. Stuart Murray¬†has more than 20 years of experience advising on business acquisitions and disposals, joint ventures and MBOs, among other matters. In 2017, Gilson and Paton acted for Bob & Berts Group Limited in a ¬£2m investment into the company by the Business Growth Fund. Paton and Gilson also advised Murray Hennessy (the former CEO of trainline.com) on an investment ‚Äď alongside Mayfair Equity Partners ‚Äď in Talon Outdoor, and also on his appointment as non-executive chairman.

Wright, Johnston & Mackenzie LLP, whose practice is driven by its work for SMEs (including family businesses) and large corporates, is increasingly handling matters with a UK or international dimension. The firm’s strengths in acquisitions and disposals are complemented by its breadth of expertise in ancillary areas, such as intellectual property, franchising, tax and insolvency. In 2017, a standout highlight involved Ken Long leading a cross-practice team in the advice to London Stock Exchange-listed company Macfarlane Group Plc on its £16.75m acquisition of Greenwoods Stock Boxes and the shares in Nottingham Recycling. Team head Graham Bell acted for the shareholders of Thornbridge Sawmills Limited in the sale of the company to Cairngorm Capital. Another key client is The NWH Group, to whom the firm provided advice on its acquisition of the wood recycling business of DJ Laing Recycling Solutions. The team is becoming increasingly active in the technology sector, handling private equity transactions (involving start-ups and spin-out companies) on both the investor and investee sides; Long acted for Compound Semiconductor Technologies in its £13m takeover by listed Sweden-based company Sivers IMA Holding AB. Colin Millar is building up the firm’s offering to clients in the healthcare sector, and also has an active food and drink practice.

Derek Hamill, who heads up¬†Gilson Gray‚Äės practice, is particularly experienced in corporate transactions involving procedural complexities or irregularities (such as those where there were historic improperly issued or improperly transferred shares). In addition, Hamill (who is dual-qualified in English and Scottish law) is knowledgeable about the IT, IP and competition law issues that arise from transactions. Elsewhere, other areas of expertise include employee ownership trusts, data protection and commercial contracts; in 2017, a highlight involved Hamill and solicitor John Kielski¬†advising Delete Limited on a digital transformation agreement with Southampton Football Club. Another matter saw Hamill assist Fullclear Limited with an equity fundraise.

Turcan Connell is particularly active in advising entrepreneurs and family businesses. Its team assists clients with the full spectrum of operational issues, including business structuring, commercial contracts and governance. In addition, on the transactional side, the work spans exits, trade sales, MBOs/employee buyouts (EBOs) and vendor-initiated MBOs (VIMBOs), among other transition events. The practice generates work from clients across a broad spread of industries, such as energy, food and drink, software and computer services, and travel and leisure. In 2017, practice head Mike Kane and senior solicitor Bethan White acted for Russell Shepherd, the CEO and founder of Hotdocs Limited, in the sale of Hotdocs to US-based acquirer Abacus Data Systems. In another Scottish-US deal, the firm acted as the lead adviser to the shareholders of Converse AI on the sale of the business to a Seattle-based midmarket technology business. Jack Gardiner and recently promoted senior associate Victoria Tweed are other key figures in the team.


Corporate and commercial: elsewhere in Scotland

Index of tables

  1. Corporate and commercial: elsewhere in Scotland
  2. Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Hall of Fame

  1. 1

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Corporate and commercial: elsewhere in Scotland clients in Scotland 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.

CLICK HERE TO VISIT THE WHO REPRESENTS WHO SITE

At Brodies LLP, 'overall performance is excellent, delivery is accurate and on time, and you get good value for expenditure'. Gill Summers, who has specialised in corporate and commercial law for more than 20 years, is among the highly regarded individuals in the team, which is 'friendly, helpful and just incredible'. Douglas Crawford has spearheaded the growth of the private equity side of the practice since his arrival from CMS in 2016; clients in this space include management teams, buyers, sellers and funding institutions. Crawford is also active in the UK M&A market. Tom Boulton-Jones handles corporate transactions across a number of sectors, such as food and drink, technology, and manufacturing and engineering. Clare Munro, Greg May and Sonia Love focus on matters connected with the oil and gas sector. Shuna Stirling leads the team, which also includes associates Shona Tennant and Gemma Hills, and also senior solicitor Hamish Blair. The firm attracts a significant number of large-scale transactions; Crawford led a multidisciplinary team in the advice to the shareholders of Craig Group Limited on the sale of North Star to Basalt Infrastructure Partners through Basalt's vehicle Ardmair Bay Holdings Limited; this was one of the biggest M&A deals in Scotland in 2017. Crawford was also the lead adviser to the shareholders of John Lawrie (Aberdeen) Limited on the sale and MBO of the company to Thunderbird Bidco Limited (an acquisition vehicle backed by Rubicon Partners and Grovepoint). Other clients include Drum Property Group, Tulloch Homes Group and Cooke Aquaculture.

Burness Paull LLP has a strong pipeline of corporate and commercial work, owing to its first-rate reputation in the oil and gas sector, the growth of its private equity practice and healthy flow of instructions from owner-managed businesses. The firm is particularly active in cross-border transactions; Aberdeen team head Jamie Stark, who has made a name for himself in the oil and gas services sector, heads up the firm's Norway desk and regularly undertakes transactions involving multiple jurisdictions. Stark and director Gary Chapman advised the shareholders of Rubislaw Investments (the ultimate parent company of Peak Well Systems) on the acquisition by Peak Well Systems of Xtreme Innovations, and also the related sale of the combined entity to Schlumberger. In addition, Stark and director Arran Mackenzie acted for the shareholders of ACE Winches in a £10m equity investment by oil and gas services company The Balmoral Group, and also in a related refinancing. In another oil and gas deal, Alasdair Freeman and others advised Sterling Resources Limited on the $163m sale of subsidiary company Sterling Resources (UK) Limited (and all of its business and assets) to Dutch exploration and production company Oranje-Nassau Energie. Helen Dickson, who undertakes both corporate and banking work, 'always looks at how to provide the best legal protections, whilst balancing this with being commercial'.

CMS' team 'understands the importance of balancing legal advice alongside the potential commercial implications'. It is 'a leader in the field', as reflected by its high-end deal experience in sectors such as energy, financial services, TMT, healthcare, leisure and corporate real estate. The firm's global reach makes it a strong choice for cross-border transactions; in 2017, Frank Fowlie led a team, which included Norman Wisely and Sian Aitken, in the advice to FTI on the administration and sale of Iona Energy Company (UK) Limited to Decipher Energy Limited. Fowlie also led a cross-practice team, which acted for Broadview Energy in its acquisition of three wind farm companies: Windline (Peattie) Limited, Criggie Renewables Limited and Maryland Renewables Limited. Helen Machin assisted US-based film company Critical Content with acquiring UK production company Renowned Films. Judith Aldersey-Williams assists clients in the oil and gas sector with commercial issues, such as licensing, procurement and commercial contracts matters. Lorna Dawson also has oil and gas contracting experience, while Graeme Clubley is recommended for his oil and gas M&A expertise. Niall Polson joined KCA Deutag as senior corporate counsel.

Pinsent Masons LLP has a particularly strong offering in the oil and gas sector, where its team acts for clients such as Zennor Petroleum, KCA Deutag, Superior Energy Group and DNO Norge. The firm’s international reach puts it on a strong footing to assist clients with all aspects of their most significant cross-border matters. In 2017, David McEwing, senior associate David Millar and others advised Delta Energy Limited on a $10m investment into the company by Alchemy Partners, and also the rolling-up of the existing shareholders into a new holding company. Martin Ewan led the advice to Baker Hughes on its acquisition of innovative technology provider Caledyne Limited. Another matter involved acting for Rift Oil (a Repsol group company) in the corporate reorganisation of part of part of Repsol’s UK group. Legal director Jonathan Kirkwood is another name to note in the team, which saw Roger Connon step down as a partner to become head of oil and gas at the firm’s legal resourcing business Vario.

Blackwood Partners LLP has a particularly strong track record in domestic and cross-border corporate and private equity deals in the oil and gas services sector. Its outstanding reputation in the Aberdeen marketplace sees the firm win work from clients such as management teams, oil and gas services companies, venture capital providers and private equity houses, among others. In 2017, team head (and firm managing partner) Alastair Wyper and solicitor Ross Fair acted as the lead advisers to Houston-based private equity firm SCF Capital Partners and SCF-backed oil and gas services company Centurion Group in a multijurisdictional merger with three other SCF portfolio companies. In another cross-border deal, Judith Quinn and Fair advised Ashtead Technology on its acquisition of United Arab Emirates-based entity TES Survey Equipment Services. Another highlight saw Wyper, Fair and consultant Ken Gordon (a recent hire from Burness Paull LLP) assist Balmoral Group with its £10m investment in ACE Winches. Although oil and gas sector corporate and commercial work is the mainstay of the practice, the firm also handles a number of non-oil and gas matters; Wyper advised Aberdeen-based catering company Entier on an investment into the business by Business Growth Fund.

Stronachs LLP¬†‚Äėconsistently displays professionalism in all that it offers‚Äė. It¬†is well-known for its work advising clients in the oil and gas sector (both on the upstream and supply chain),¬†with a particular strength in acting for owner-managed businesses and management teams. Neil Forbes¬†leads the team, which complements oil and gas deal experience with expertise in other sectors, such as transport and logistics, technology and food and drink. In 2017, David Rennie¬†and others advised Evolve Group (UK) Limited on a group restructuring. Ross Gardner¬†led a team in the advice to oilfield equipment supplier Omega Completion Technology in the disposal of its completion tools product portfolio to National Oilwell Varco. Malcolm Donald¬†acts for clients such as Azinor Catalyst, Dana Petroleum and JD Neuhaus.¬†Inverness-based Ross Linn¬†made partner.

Aberdein Considine‚Äės team is praised by clients for having ‚Äėa good understanding of the needs of in-house solicitors‚Äė. A hallmark of its practice is its partner-led approach to service delivery. Ritchie Whyte¬†has ‚Äėgreat commercial awareness‚Äė and is ‚Äėresponsive and accommodating in terms of how he presents his advice‚Äė. Whyte is based in Aberdeen, as is team head Jacqueline Law. Anthony Quin¬†is a key figure in Stirling.¬†Although the firm is particularly well-known for acting for SMEs and investors in the energy and marine service sector, it has become increasingly involved in deals connected with the healthcare and food and drink industries, among others. Whyte recently advised Langstane Liquor Company on growth capital investments by a syndicate of Enterprise Investment Scheme investors and also by South Africa-based Southern Cross Beverages. Law acted for Investing Women Angels in its subscription of unsecured convertible loan notes in pharma business TC Biopharm. Dry Ice Scotland, Yardbury Group and NorSea Group are among other active clients.

Blackadders LLP‚Äės practice head¬†Campbell Clark¬†is ‚Äėan invaluable asset‚Äė, according to clients; he is ‚Äėquick to respond to requests and is very knowledgeable‚Äė. Clark splits his practice between the Aberdeen and Dundee offices, while Kirk Dailly¬†and Susan McFadyen¬†are based full-time in the latter office. The team covers a broad spread of matters including acquisitions and disposals, investment rounds, joint ventures, MBOs and commercial contracts, among others. In addition, Clark has been at the forefront of the firm‚Äôs advice to clients on the fast-growing area of employee ownership transactions. McFadyen has developed a reputation for her knowledge about timeshare and vacation ownership matters; RCI Europe is a key client in this space. Other sectors that generate work for the firm include healthcare, food and drink, and education. Dailly acted for WooHa Brewing Company in an investment made by a number of investors into the business to finance its expansion. The firm‚Äôs other active clients include 4J Studios, The Insights Group and Vascular Flow Technologies.

Dentons¬†merged with Scottish firm Maclay Murray & Spens LLP in October 2017; in the oil and gas sector, the combined entity‚Äôs practice benefits from the synergies between¬†Dentons‚Äė pre-existing¬†offering to operators/licence holders and the latter firm‚Äôs historical strengths in acting for supply chain clients. Gordon Hobkirk¬†leads the team in Aberdeen, which also has a strong client following in food and drink, financial services, retail and renewable energy.¬† In 2017, Hobkirk and associate Nicola Rae¬†acted for three special purpose vehicles (SPVs) set up by Muirden Energy in the disposal of the business and assets of the SPVs to a third party purchaser. Motion Software Limited, Hutcheson Services Limited and Grieg Seafood Shetland Limited are among a number of recent client wins. Bill Fowler¬†divides time between Edinburgh and Aberdeen.

Harper Macleod LLP‚Äės commitment to the North of Scotland market is reflected by the fact that it has a dedicated corporate and commercial offering, which is spread between its offices in Inverness, Lerwick and Thurso. The firm generates work from clients from a broad cross-section of industries, including food and drink, energy, tourism, manufacturing and technology.¬† Its presence in Lerwick alone has enabled it to gain a foothold into the local marine and aquaculture market. Work for family and owner-managed businesses is a particular area of strength;¬†Chris Kerr¬†undertakes the full range of general corporate and commercial matters for these clients, and is also particularly knowledgeable about the Scottish employee ownership market. In 2017, Kerr worked with Craig McKerracher¬†and others to¬†assist Maclain Limited and the Maclain family with the sale of Uist Asco to Acadian Seaplants. Another cornerstone of the practice is work for early-stage and high-growth companies; the firm serves as the exclusive legal provider in Scotland to Scottish EDGE and Entrepreneurial Spark. Jill Fryer¬†(whose expertise spans commercial contracts, competition law and public procurement) and¬†Lesley Wisely¬†are names to note at associate level.

Peter Murray leads Ledingham Chalmers LLP's practice, which has previously tended to stand out for its work in the oil and gas services sector. The firm recently expanded its offering, however, by launching a new exploration and production practice; this was heralded in January 2018 by the hires of Uisdean Vass and Laura Petrie from Womble Bond Dickinson. Further reflective of the growth of the corporate practice, Natalie Stevenson recently joined as a senior associate from CMS. Elsewhere, in addition to handling corporate and commercial matters connected with oil and gas, the firm’s workload is rounded out by mandates involving sectors such as renewable energy, property, care and leisure. Jody Mitchell, Rod Hutchison and Neil Anderson are other highly regarded practitioners in the group. Malcolm Laing serves as a consultant. Clients in this space include Total E&P UK Limited, Tendeka, Interwell, Arjo Wiggins Fine Papers and University of the Highlands and Islands.

Shepherd and Wedderburn‚Äės Aberdeen-led practice has gained momentum since the firm acquired The Commercial Law Partnership in January 2017. With practice head John Rutherford¬†at the helm, the firm has won new work across all the key sectors of the north east economy, including food and drink,¬† financial services, renewable energy, technology and rural business. Rutherford has more than 35 years of experience acting for clients in the oil and gas service sector; his workload in this space covers investments and disposals (acting for private equity investors and management teams), and corporate structuring, among other matters. The team also includes Keir Willox, whose expertise includes company formations, joint venture agreements, MBOs/MBIs and commercial contracts.

Thorntons Law LLP¬†fields a 14-strong corporate team, of which four members are partners seasoned with corporate transactional experience;¬†Michael Royden, Chris Allan, Alistair Lang¬†and Chris Byrne¬†(who became a partner in 2017) are names to note. Royden leads the group, which is spread across offices in Dundee, Perth and St Andrews. According to the firm‚Äôs clients, ‚Äėit¬†offers a more personal approach than many others‚Äė. The team acts for an impressive spread of clients, which includes global oil and gas companies with operations in Aberdeen, London-based high-growth companies and universities located in the North of Scotland. A particular sweet spot of the practice is in the healthcare sector, where the team handles corporate matters involving veterinary practices and GP practices, pharmacies and dental practices. Elsewhere, the firm demonstrates strong capabilities acting for golf sector clients ‚Äď where names include St Andrews Link Trust and Carnoustie Golf Links ‚Äď and companies in the computer games sector. In 2017, Royden acted for Walter Davidson & Sons (one of the largest independent pharmacy groups in Scotland) in its acquisition of Garelochhead Pharmacy. Lang and others assisted Intelligent Growth Solutions with a ¬£3m series C Enterprise Investment Scheme equity fundraise. Robbie Francis¬†is a highly regarded associate.


Corporate tax

Index of tables

  1. Corporate tax
  2. Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Hall of Fame

  1. 1

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Corporate tax clients in Scotland 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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The team at Brodies LLP provides 'very measured, constructive advice - nothing flash, just pragmatic and reliable'. Isobel D’Inverno and Alan Barr lead the team, which provides tax support on M&A and real estate transactions, advises on tax issues in the oil and gas sector and handles investment funds-related tax matters, among many other areas. D'Inverno is particularly sought after to advise on issues associated with Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT) and Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT). Heather Thompson, who is a recent hire from Turcan Connell, is experienced in advising family and owner-managed businesses on a broad cross-section of personal, corporate and real estate tax issues. Heather Gibson is 'a very intelligent and industrious person, with an eye for detail'. Nigel Watson is a share scheme and employee remuneration tax expert. Associate Bob Langridge is also recommended. A highlight for the team in 2017 involved advising Axis Capital Holdings Limited on the tax aspects of its £477m offer to acquire Novae Plc. Another matter involved assisting a joint venture between Moda Living and Apache Capital with tax issues related its acquisition from Grosvenor of a build to rent site at Springfield, Edinburgh.

Dentons' first-rate credentials in the corporate tax arena are underlined by its ability to deliver advice through a combination of chartered tax advisers, accountants and lawyers. Gwen Souter, who has previous experience of serving as a director at Deloitte, is knowledgeable about international taxation and she assists clients with M&A-related tax issues, among other matters. Lorna McCaa, who is both a senior lawyer and chartered tax adviser, is a go-to for advice on employee incentives. Alastair MacLeod is primarily based in London, but spends a significant portion of time in Edinburgh. In 2017, Souter and MacLeod were among the advisers to PRS REIT Plc on its admission to the specialist fund segment of the London Stock Exchange, and also worked with the corporate team on the launch of Downing Strategic Micro-Cap Investment Trust Plc. Another highlight saw McCaa assist Highland Distillers with the tax aspects of its acquisition of the Glenrothes premium Scotch single malt whisky brand and stocks of Glenrothes whisky from Berry Bros & Rudd.

Ronnie Brown heads up Burness Paull LLP's practice, which plays a crucial role on corporate and real estate transactions for clients such as BUPA, James Fisher and Sons Plc and AMG Group. The firm's market profile in relation to tax matters has been enhanced since Brown joined from DWF in 2016. Brown recently advised on the tax aspects (which including VAT and capital allowances issues) of Great Western Unit Trust's circa £60m sale of Great Western Retail Park to a London-based family trust. Brown also provided transactional tax support to Standard Life Aberdeen Plc (through its subsidiary 1825) on its acquisition of Crewe-based financial advisory firm Jones Sheridan Holdings Limited from a number of sellers. Another significant matter involved Brown working with the corporate team to advise The Weir Group Plc on its $114m acquisition of Singapore-headquartered KOP Surface Products from Norway-based Akastor.

Chartered tax adviser Ainsley MacLaren is the key contact at MacRoberts LLP. In addition to providing corporate support, MacLaren advises on LBTT/SDLT and VAT issues in property transactions, employee share schemes, venture capital reliefs and tax planning, among other areas. In 2017, MacLaren assisted the shareholders of Boyd Insurance with Boyd's sale to Broker Network. Another highlight involved acting for the shareholders of CLCB Holdings (trading as CORGI HomePlan) in the sale of the business to OVO Energy. MacLaren is particularly sought-after by charities; areas of expertise include the tax aspects of charitable trading, sponsorship arrangements and mergers between charities.

Shepherd and Wedderburn's practice is jointly led by Stephen Miller and employee share incentives expert Rodger Cairns. Another notable individual is senior associate Douglas Sinclair who, like Miller, is a chartered tax adviser. The team plays a key role in high-profile and groundbreaking corporate and real estate transactions, as demonstrated by its recent work advising Hermes Investment Management/Britel Fund on the tax issues related to the Capital Square office development in Edinburgh, and assisting Wheatley Housing Group with the LBTT aspects of a joint venture agreement with Glasgow City Council. The team also advises clients on various other issues, such as SDLT, Pay as You Earn and national insurance, among others. Miller Homes, Taylor Wimpey and Scottish high-growth company TVSquared are among the firm's key clients.

At DWF, director Caroline Colliston (who is dual-qualified as a solicitor and chartered tax adviser) covers a broad spread of matters, including transactional support on M&A and private equity deals, as well as share schemes, HMRC inquiries and investigations, and LBTT advice. Colliston was part of a cross-practice team which advised Edwin James Holdings Limited on its £24m acquisition of WT Parker Holdings Limited, and she also assisted Dundee City Council with the sale of Dundee Energy Recycling Limited to MVV Environment. In addition to supporting members of other departments (such as corporate and real estate) in Scotland, Colliston also works closely with Leeds-based UK commercial tax head John Toon.

Pinsent Masons LLP's main contact in Scotland is Christine Yuill, who made partner in May 2017, and advises on tax, share plans and incentives. Areas of strength for the firm include acting for clients in the energy and real estate sectors, such as Ithaca Energy and CALA Group. A notable highlight involved Yuill advising Abstract Securities Limited on the tax aspects of the sale of the entire share capital of Abstract (Glasgow) Limited, as the owner of the St Vincent Plaza Building in Glasgow, to a company within the Starwood Capital group. Yuill also assisted Baker Hughes with its acquisition of Caledyne Limited. Elsewhere, Yuill also has a strong client following of private equity investors; clients include Lyceum Capital, Sovereign Capital and Nevis Capital. 


EU and competition

Index of tables

  1. EU and competition
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which EU and competition clients in Scotland 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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Brodies LLP assists public and private sector clients with a wide ambit of public law, regulatory and competition law questions. Charles Livingstone has expertise in antitrust compliance and enforcement, merger control and state aid, among other areas. In addition to handling transactional antitrust matters, Rod Lambert has a wealth of experience of cartel investigations, dawn raids and antitrust litigation. Lambert also co-heads the firm's multidisciplinary Brexit advisory group with Christine O'Neill, which advises clients from a wide range of sectors on the implications of the UK's departure from the European Union, including the future UK-EU relationship. Roger Cotton leads the public procurement team and is also a state aid expert. Livingstone, O'Neill and others recently represented the Scottish Whisky Association, spiritsEUROPE and CEEV in a challenge to the Scottish government's Alcohol (Minimum Pricing) (Scotland) Act 2012 . In another highlight, Livingstone acted for Scottish Care in the CMA's UK-wide study of the care homes market.

Dentons advises clients on the full spectrum of UK and EU contentious and non-contentious competition law issues. Led by Michael Dean, the team handles matters centred on merger control, state aid, procurement, market investigations and cartel proceedings, among other areas. Senior associate Melanie Martin primarily handles non-contentious competition law matters for clients from a wide range of sectors, with a particular specialism in the financial services industry. Another senior associate Jennifer Marshall is experienced in follow-on damages litigation. Catriona Munro, Dean and Martin assisted Aberdeen Asset Management with the merger control aspects of its merger with Standard Life Plc. Munro is also part of a team which is defending Highlands and Islands Enterprise (both before the European Commission and the Scottish courts) against allegations that it unlawfully provided state aid. In addition to handling competition law concerns, the team has expertise in European law and regulatory matters (particularly in the energy and water sectors), and in export controls, trade law and bribery law. Directors David McGowan and Carolyn Burns are recommended.

Shepherd and Wedderburn has a first-rate reputation in the utilities sector, particularly energy and water, where it advises clients on the gamut of UK and EU law competition and regulatory issues. Gordon Downie, senior associate Joanne McDowall, John Grady and Liz McRobb are advising the Single Energy Market Committee on the creation of a new regulatory framework (referred to as I-SEM) to ensure compliance with Commission Regulation (EU) 2015/1222 on capacity allocation and congestion management. Outside of energy and water, in another highlight, the firm provided state aid compliance advice to City of Edinburgh Council in relation to the Edinburgh Homes Project for accelerating housebuilding in the society. Elsewhere, in the aftermath of the Brexit vote, the team has become increasingly active in the advice to clients on EU law and trade matters. Senior associate Fiona Parker is another key figure in the team, whose other clients include ScottishPower, ORE Catapult and Capital Document Solutions.

Burness Paull LLP's competition practice is led by David Goodbrand, who is knowledgeable about competition compliance, commercial contracts and merger control. The group generates work from a wide range of sectors, such as food and drink, technology, oil and gas, financial services and media. Recently promoted partner Graeme Palmer has driven the growth of the firm's state aid and public procurement practice; he is working with Goodbrand, senior associate Ruth McNaught and others to advise Hampden Park Limited on various aspects of the development of Hampden Park stadium for the Euro 2020 football tournament, including the procurement strategy of appointing a design team. Palmer is also acting as the lead partner to Highlands and Islands Enterprise in the rollout of high-speed broadband to rural areas in Scotland as part of the Community Broadband Scotland project. Contentious procurement cases (for both public and private sector clients) are another pillar of the practice.

At CMS, Graeme Young in Edinburgh and Aberdeen-based oil and gas sector expert Judith Aldersey-Williams handle a full range of EU and UK competition issues for Scottish corporates and public organisations, as well as international entities with business interests in Scotland. The team's workload includes antitrust compliance and enforcement, CMA market investigations and studies, UK and EU merger control, state aid and public procurement. In addition to having a standalone practice in Scotland, the team also operates as part of a wider global competition group, putting it in a strong position to advise on cross-border issues. Clients of the practice include Artemis, Scottish Water, University of Glasgow and AON Plc.

DWF has a number of practitioners located in Scotland with expertise in EU/UK competition law and regulatory matters. Colin Miller assists clients with CMA cartel investigations, merger control, and EU public procurement challenges and processes. Martin Gallaher is knowledgeable about EU public procurement rules and state aid. Another key figure is Euan McSherry, who represented Serco in its challenge of the decision by Glasgow City Council to award a £400m contract to CGI UK under the Public Contracts legislation. Miller was the lead adviser to global rum producer Angostura on competition issues associated with its distribution strategy in the EU, China, Hong Kong and Macau, among other territories.  The firm is also a leading adviser to the Scottish Government on the competition aspects of major projects; Gallaher and others advised the client on the roll-out of the Digital Scotland Superfast Broadband programme in 2017. Howard Cartlidge, who is the firm's London-based head of EU competition, has experience of handling competition law matters in Scotland.

Harper Macleod LLP assists public and private sector clients with a broad scope of behavioural and transactional competition law matters; James McMorrow and associate Jill Fryer are assisting Glasgow City Council with competition issues associated with the European Sports Championships 2018 in Glasgow (including the procurement of contracts concerning the hosting and broadcasting of the Championships). McMorrow and Fryer are also working with Jennifer Jack to advise Renfrewshire Council on the state aid aspects of its City Deal project. The same three practitioners are also defending Comhairle nan Eilean Siar against a judicial review action over the procurement of a multimillion pound regeneration project, and also in a related state aid complaint. Elsewhere, the firm is particularly active in advising housing sector clients (including registered social landlords) on competition law (particularly public procurement and state aid) issues.

MacRoberts LLP's David Flint, who has nearly 40 years of competition law experience, leads the team, which advises public and private sector clients on competition law compliance, merger control, cartel and other regulatory investigations, and public procurement. It generates mandates from clients in sectors such as construction, food and drink, publishing and transport, among others. Duncan Osler, who is accredited by the Law Society of Scotland as a specialist in public procurement law, undertakes a significant amount of work for clients such as government bodies, NHS boards and local authorities. John Reid departed for an in-house role at Scottish Power.


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