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  1. Corporate and commercial: Kent, Surrey, Sussex
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Clyde & Co LLP’s team focuses on all aspects of corporate and commercial work, including M&A, joint ventures and strategic alliances. Andrew Trotter specialises in company sales and purchases, and Nick Purnell handles outsourcings and commercial projects. Legal director Stuart Hutson advises on management buyouts and is noted for his particular experience in franchising. Former legal director Vicki Abberton moved to FromCounsel, a legal resources website, and Simon Vere Nicoll is now based in the London office.

The ‘very responsive and supportive’ team at Cripps LLP regularly handles high-value acquisitions, management buyouts and corporate transactions. James Beatton heads the practice, which recently advised Balreed Digitec and its shareholders on its sale to Apogee Corporation, which involved the re-investment of the founding shareholder into the new group. Other clients include Lloyds Bank and Shinhan Bank.

Thomas Eggar LLP merged with Irwin Mitchell in 2015, giving the latter firm a strong commercial foothold in the region. Faye Bargery specialises in corporate and banking transactions. Neil Hart and Daniel Bastide are also noted for their experience in all aspects of corporate and commercial work. Matthew Newman left the firm for an in-house counsel position.

Stevens & Bolton LLP’s practice is headed by James Waddell – who took over from Keith Syson in 2015 – and includes Beverley Whittaker, who leads the specialist commercial law team. The ‘exemplaryRichard Baxter advised PCI Consulting Group on its sale to Wood Mackenzie. Other highlights included handling Thirty Three’s sale to Capita.

asb law LLP recently assisted insurance company Markerstudy Holdings with its purchase of Ultimate HC and the transfer of its six subsidiaries. Other clients include Venus Wine & Spirit Merchants and EU Supply. Helen Mead heads the ten-strong team and is supported by corporate finance specialist Russell Bell commercial expert Debbie Venn.

At Charles Russell Speechlys LLP the ‘approachable, commercial and knowledgeableTim Jenkins is known for his strength in pharmaceutical transactions. Other key figures include practice head Geoffrey Sparks, who advised on Robert Walker’s demerger through a capital reduction, and Catherine Drew, who assisted Inqo Investments with its admission to trading on ISDX. Acal and The Consort Group are also clients.

At DMH Stallard LLP, the 16-strong team regularly work with clients such as Ivy Press and Small Batch Coffee Company; work for the latter includes advising the client on its management buyout, backed by a private equity investment. Abigail Owen is recommended for her ‘strong communication skills and ability to stay on brief’, and head Jonathan Grant is well regarded.

At Mundays LLP, ‘candid, calm, and extremely knowledgeable’ practice head Neale Andrews assisted ChannelAdvisor Corporation with on post-merger completion matters, having previously advised on its $12m purchase of E-Tale Holdings. Other highlights for Andrews included acting for Baines Simmons on the sale of its issued share capital to Air Partner. Other clients include TM Lewin and Mallino Development. David Irving is ‘always helpful and a pleasure to deal with’.

Penningtons Manches LLP’s corporate and commercial practice has a life sciences and technology slant; highlights included advising LG Motion on its acquisition of a 65% controlling interest in Precision Acoustics. Simon Bickerdike heads the national team. Julian Harvey moved to Downs Solicitors LLP.

Rawlison Butler LLP specialises in mid-market transactions; highlights for Tim Sadka included advising IBA Group on the sale of its shares to Hockley Investments, and assisting Cambridge Capital Partners with its acquisition of medical equipment supplier Xograph Healthcare. Other clients include Swarovski, Suzuki GB and Arkose Group. Lisa Downs joined the commercial team from Fieldfisher.

At Barlow Robbins LLP, corporate and commercial head Mark Lucas assisted A.F.C.B. Enterprises with the sale of 25% of its shares in Bournemouth Football club to PEAK6. Head of corporate finance Philip Stephensonadds a level of pragmatism to the advice he gives’; he advised Evolve Secure Solutions on its acquisition of Genio Health and Life Sciences. Kate Norgett joined the firm from Clifford Chance.

Thomson Snell & Passmore’s team is ‘focused on outcomes rather than just the process’. Jointly led by Joanne Gallagher, the practice recently advised Borelli Tea Holdings on its acquisition of shares in a Rwandan tea company. Fellow co-head James Partridge acted alongside Nick Gabay for LetRisks on its £1.2m acquisition of The Landlord Hub. Other clients include Motorline Holdings, Bel UK and Meiosis.

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Legal Developments in South East for Corporate and commercial: Kent, Surrey, Sussex

  • US rules regarding offshore accounts

    The Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment Act 2010, enacted on 18 March 2010, imposes a new US withholding tax and reporting regime, known as the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA). The FATCA regime applies generally to payments made after 31 December 2012, except on obligations (to be defined in future guidance) outstanding on 18 March 2012. Substantial effort is required by foreign entities to bring their worldwide operations and policies into compliance with the FATCA rules as of the effective date.

    - Jones Day

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