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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 States, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for six consecutive years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.

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United States > Media, technology and telecoms > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings


Legal market overview
Clifford Chance Ė Their Voices

The development and deployment of wireless infrastructure has been a key theme in the telecoms market this year, with the move towards 5G wireless internet continuing apace, as well as the increasing demand for satellite backhaul networks to complement high-speed wireless broadband. In concert with the current infrastructure push, there has been a robust conversation surrounding wireless spectrum recently, including various proposed changes to C-band and millimeter wave (mMW) spectrum usage. On the transactional side, the wireless market has seen one of its biggest shakeups in recent years, with the announced acquisition of T-Mobile by Sprint ‚ÄĒ¬†a deal that will change the face of the US wireless market.

Wireless backhaul is far from the only issue currently at play in the satellite sector, with several major players either entering or looking to expand their presence in the Non-Geostationary Orbit (NGSO) market, such as OneWeb, Boeing and SES. Launch services agreements remain a key area of work for satellite-focused firms, especially given the high volume of satellites required for current NGSO projects. Since satellite companies often operate on a global scale, cross-border regulatory work such as representation before the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) has become an important issue for firms handling work for satellite clients.

In a similar vein, firms undertaking work for foreign clients, or companies dealing with foreign clients, have had to adapt to the Trump administration's increased focus on national security issues, with many reporting that the approval processes before the Council on Foreign Investments in the United States (CFIUS) and the multi-agency panel Team Telecom (TT) have become more rigorous in recent times. The controversy surrounding the Restoring Internet Freedom Order, which repealed net neutrality rules and is probably the administration's best-known telecoms policy, has refused to abate in the last year, with a DC circuit appeals case ongoing at the time of writing.

The broadcast market is also undergoing some significant changes, with top-level consolidation underway alongside the myriad local market reorganizations arising out of the FCC's incentive auction. Perhaps the most headline-grabbing transactions have been Walt Disney's proposed acquisition of 21st Century Fox, and its various connected spin-offs and divestments, but Nexstar, Discovery Communications, and Meredith have also been involved in high-profile deals.

The telecoms and broadcast sectors looked to be off to a slow start in 2019 following the suspension of FCC operations during the government shutdown, and it remains to be seen how much of an effect the resultant backlog will have on matters due before the commission in 2019, though many in the field are predicting few significant consequences to the commission's dry January.

The legal market, has remained relatively stable in the last twelve months, with comparatively few high-profile moves as compared to recent years. Notable firms include Latham & Watkins LLP and Hogan Lovells US LLP for their one-stop practices, Jones Day and Milbank for their satellite expertise, and Debevoise & Plimpton LLP and Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP for their transactional work.

Looking to the tech space, fintech continues to transform and disrupt the financial services industry in the US and globally. Given the attractiveness of startups in the sector, established fintech players have continued to evolve and innovate, and banks and other financial institutions have been compelled to embrace a culture of collaboration in the financial services industry.

The sale of digital tokens in ICOs had in previous years been a particularly active area; however, this has largely subsided following the SEC’s regulatory clarification that these can constitute securities, and be subject to US securities law. This has sparked a series of SEC investigations and enforcement actions against fintech players alleging registration violations, as well as prompting the need for further clarification from state and federal regulators.

Even beyond securities law, the lack of cohesive regulation for fintechs in the US makes the market a difficult area to navigate, with companies being subject to a series of overlapping authorities, fragmented across state and federal levels. Data protection and cybersecurity are key areas of concern, with compliance advice surrounding GDPR and the upcoming California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) being a focus for many firms.

Although the cryptocurrency bubble has arguably burst, or at least largely deflated ‚ÄĒ with 2018 seeing the value of popular coins plummet ‚ÄĒ blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT) continues to be at the forefront of fintech development. DLT in particular is a hot topic in the sector and forms the basis of many products and solutions, with uses ranging from smart contracts and trading platforms to payment solutions and alternative lending. The interest in artificial intelligence and exploration around its uses in the financial sector is also noteworthy, with the development of robo-advisors predicted to become an area of increased focus over the next 12 months. Other key areas of development under the fintech umbrella include the growth of evermore sophisticated InsurTech and RegTech products.

Fintech, biotech, and energy technology are of course major generators of high-value work, but given the ubiquity of integrated technologies across industry sectors and in our day-to-days, cybersecurity and data privacy have become increasingly salient issues for businesses, which have been facing hacking threats and cyber-attacks of unprecedented intensity and sophistication. For this reason, lawyers have been busy with advising and training companies’ boards and CEOs on breach preparation, prevention and response. Attention is also being drawn to the regulatory aspects of data privacy and data protection, particularly with respect to the EU GDPR. Domestically, the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), which will become effective from January 2020, holds any company of a certain size that does business in California accountable and responsible for the safety of consumers’ personal information. On the contentious side, the main area of activity for lawyers has been litigation of class actions that follow notifications of security breaches. Assistance with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)’s investigations and enforcement is another service in high demand. Practices have been assembling specialised teams in order to live up to the challenges of cybersecurity and privacy work. In particular, Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP and Cooley LLP have been significantly strengthening their profiles with new arrivals from the legal and institutional world. The market is led by practices with large international networks like Baker McKenzie LLP and Hogan Lovells US LLP, as well as by more US-centric outfits such as Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP and Morrison & Foerster LLP.

Advertising and marketing: litigation

Index of tables

  1. Advertising and marketing: litigation
  2. Leading lawyers: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading lawyers
  4. Next Generation Partners

Leading lawyers

  1. 1
    • Brendan O‚ÄôRourke - Proskauer Rose LLP
    • Norman Simon - Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP
    • John Villafranco - Kelley Drye & Warren LLP
    • Harold Weinberger - Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1
    • Eileen Patt - Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP
Clifford Chance Ė Their Voices

With particular experience advising clients in the pharmaceutical, healthcare and retail sectors, Debevoise & Plimpton LLP's New York-based practice handles a range of intellectual property and false advertising litigation before the courts, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and National Advertising Division (NAD). A team led by practice head David Bernstein and cybersecurity and data privacy partner Jeremy Feigelson successfully settled false advertising litigation brought by Guardant Healt against its client Foundation Medicine relating to the companies' competing cancer testing products. Jyotin Hamid and Bernstein lead a team including counsel Megan Bannigan which continues to represent Merck KGaA in coordination of global false advertising litigation pending in 11 jurisdictions. In another work highlight, the practice advised BA Sports Nutrition before the NAD in a challenge brought by Stokley Van-Camp, which has now been referred to the FTC. Other key names to note include Michael Schaper, James Pastore and Washington DC-based healthcare sector expert Paul Rubin. The group's impressive client roster also includes American Express, L’Oreal USA, Costco Wholesale Corporation and Unilever.

Trusted Advisor - with Finnegan

In a cross-platform collaboration between GC magazine and leading IP law firm Finnegan, key partners and senior in-house clients explore the challenges for women in assuming leadership roles in the legal profession.

The New York-based advertising litigation practice at Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP boasts experience handling a range of disputes against both competitors and consumers, and is jointly led by Norman Simon and Harold Weinberger. In recent work, the duo continue to defend True Car in Lanham Act litigation brought by numerous independent car dealers and Simon, alongside Eileen Patt, is representing Revlon and Almay in a putative class action complaint alleging that Almay products are falsely labelled hypoallergenic. The team also acted for Procter & Gamble in a challenge brought before the NAD relating to advertising by Rodan + Fields. The group's impressive client portfolio also includes Starbucks, Neutrogena Corporation and ExxonMobil.

Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP's New York-based false advertising practice counts Eli Lilly, Blue Buffalo Company and The Hershey Company among its clients. Steven Zalesin led a team which successfully defended Coca-Cola in a putative class action where plaintiffs argued the false use of the term 'diet' in Diet Coke, as no-calorie soft drinks purportedly do not assist with weight loss or weight management. Other work includes representing Johnson & Johnson in Lanham Act litigation brought by Andover Healthcare alleging products were inaccurately labeled as not made with natural rubber latex, because they contained latex proteins. Changes to the team include the departure of Travis Tu to an in-house role at the Center for Reproductive Rights.

The false advertising practice at Proskauer Rose LLP handles a range of class actions and litigation against competitors. In a recent work highlight, the firm successfully achieved a $9.9m damages award for its client Church & Dwight in Lanham Act litigation brought against the company's competitor in the home pregnancy test market, SPD Swiss Precision Diagnostics. Lawrence Weinstein, who heads the practice alongside Brendan O’Rourke, is defending PVH Corp in three consumer class actions alleging fraudulent discount price advertising at Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger and Van Heusen outlet stores in California. Alexander Kaplan, who boasts experience in advertising, trademark and copyright litigation, is another key name to note. All attorneys are based in New York.

Christie Thompson heads the Washington DC-based advertising and marketing law practice at Kelley Drye & Warren LLP, which is noted particularly for its experience handling class action litigation, FTC investigations and challenges before the NAD. The team successfully settled a consolidated class action for Riddell Sports Group which alleged the company misrepresented that its Revolution varsity and youth football helmets possessed concussion reduction technology. Kristi Wolff led the representation of Nestlé in a NAD challenge against Beech-Nut relating to several claims made in the advertisement for its cereal products, including the use of the terms 'sensitive', 'natural' and '0 grams' of sugar. The team also boast experience handling Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) litigation; acting for Essendant, it achieved the denial of class certification in an action which alleged that the company had sent junk faxes in violation of the TCPA. Other key names to note include John Villafranco and New Jersey-based Lauri Mazzuchetti.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP advertising, marketing and promotions group fields a team of intellectual property litigation experts and frequently handles false advertising disputes. In the consumer class action space, it defended Colgate-Palmolive in a dispute alleging false and misleading advertising of the whitening properties of its Optic White toothpaste, and represented Sanderson Farms in allegations of false advertising from two consumer advocacy groups relating to its '100% natural' chicken. Washington DC-based Gregg LoCascio alongside Robin McCue and Megan New (both based in Chicago) successfully obtained a jury trial victory and $16m in damages for Dyson in false advertising litigation brought against its vacuum competitor SharkNinja. Ross Weisman, also in Chicago, is another key name to note. The practice also has experience advising clients before the FTC, the NAD and National Advertising Review Board (NARB).

The advertising disputes practice at Loeb & Loeb LLP is jointly led by Thomas Jirgal and David Mallen, based in Chicago and New York respectively. Mallen has particular experience acting for clients before the NAD and in a recent highlight successfully defended GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in a challenge initiated by Procter & Gamble relating to GSK's product claims in connection to its over-the-counter fiber laxative Citrucel. The team also represented Rodan + Fields in Lanham Act litigation against Procter & Gamble (P&G), in which the client sought a declaration that advertising claims challenged by P&G were truthful and not misleading, and is acting for A. O. Smith in a suit alleging that the claims made by Rheem that it is the '#1 brand of water heaters' are false and misleading. BuzzFeed, T-Mobile and Comcast Cable Communications are all clients.

The advertising and marketing team at Morrison & Foerster LLP has particular experience acting for clients in the technology, retail, and food and beverage sectors. It is handling a range of food misbranding class actions for clients such as Del Monte, Twinings, McCormick, Unilever and Amazon Preservation Partners, and is acting for Uber Technologies in several matters including TCPA litigation. San Francisco-based Tiffany Cheung heads the consumer class action practice: Los Angeles-based partner Dan Marmalefsky successfully defeated the plaintiffs’ bid for a nationwide class certification in allegations of misleading statements on can labels brought against clients Monster Beverage and Monster Energy, and David McDowell continues to represent FanDuel in over 40 multi-district litigation class action matters involving allegations of false advertising and misuse of confidential or proprietary information.

Norton Rose Fulbright has experience handling advertising litigation for its consumer and pharmaceutical brand clients. San Antonio-based Saul Perloff and Jeffrey Margulies in Los Angeles jointly head the practice and are recommended particularly for Lanham Act litigation and defending consumer class action cases, respectively. Perloff and Paul Keller in New York are taking the lead in representing Provepharm in litigation against Akorn, alleging false advertising of Akorn's unapproved methylene blue product in comparison to Provepharm’s approved and highly purified Provay Blue product. The team is also defending Neogenis Labs against allegations that its labeling and commercial advertising violate Section 43(a) of the Lanham Act in ligation brought by ThermoLife. A consumer class action matter led by a team around Margulies is the representation of Deoleo US and Safeway in claims relating to each client’s labeling of olive oil.

The 'friendly, approachable and professional' advertising and marketing team at Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP 'offers clear, pragmatic and commercial advice' in litigation. San Francisco-based Robert Guite and Sascha Henry in Los Angeles successfully defended Starbucks in a class action alleging false advertisement of the volume of its mochas and lattes. In other work highlights, the practice was instructed by Fotona in false advertising challenges brought by its competitor Millennium Dental Technologies relating to laser dental devices used to treat periodontal conditions, and represented Califia Farms in a false advertising claim relating to the 'No Added Sugar' labeling of its tangerine juice product. The team also has experience acting for clients in TCPA litigation. New York-based Paul Garrity, who heads the advertising practice alongside Brian Anderson in San Francisco, is another key name to note.

Venable LLP's advertising litigation practice attracts praise for its 'in-depth knowledge of the industry's landscape, great communication skills, persuasive arguments and strategic approach'. Washington-based Roger Colaizzi heads the practice and boasts broad experience spanning Lanham Act cases, class action litigation and brand protection. The team recently achieved a dismissal with prejudice of a class action complaint brought against its client Nutraclick concerning three testosterone-boosting supplement products. It is also representing Henkel Corporation in a putative consumer class action alleging that the labeling of Henkel’s line of Purex 'Natural Elements' laundry detergents is false and misleading to consumers because the products contain ingredients alleged to be synthetic and artificial. In another work highlight, San Francisco-based Angel Garganta successfully defended Dannon Company in false advertising claims relating to the 'All Natural' labeling of products.

The consumer and class action practice at Winston & Strawn LLP boasts a client roster including prominent brands such as Dell, Costco Wholesale and Mazda Motor. The team advised the latter on a putative nationwide class action alleging that Mazda falsely advertised its navigation software which purported to offer real-time traffic alerts in all of its 2016 model year cars. Other recent work highlights include Chicago-based Scott Glauberman's successful representation of Abbott Laboratories in a class action relating to the 'organic' labeling of its Similac infant formula, and Chicago-based Ronald Rothstein's defense of The JM Smucker Company and Big Heart Pet Brands in a case which confirmed that 'mere puffery' in advertising is not actionable under the Lanham Act . Other key names to note include Amanda Groves, who focuses on complex commercial litigation and splits her time between Charlotte and Silicon Valley, and Los Angeles-based Steve Smerek.

Advertising and marketing: transactional

Index of tables

  1. Advertising and marketing: transactional
  2. Leading lawyers: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading lawyers
  4. Next Generation Partners
  5. Rising stars

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1
Clifford Chance Ė Their Voices

Clients consider¬†Davis & Gilbert LLP¬†'unique amongst law firms in its understanding of the advertising and technology space'. The New York-based advertising, marketing and promotions practice offers 'succinct, on-point, advice in a timely manner'.¬†The team is 'knowledgeable, professional and accommodating' and provides 'a¬†full suite of legal services' for its¬†advertiser, brand and agency clients. It recently successfully represented¬†Benefit Cosmetics¬†before the National Advertising Division (NAD) in a challenge of an¬†advertiser‚Äôs substantiation for mascara volume claims. Other work highlights include advising a leading global creative agency on the creation, development and implementation of an interactive social change campaign in¬†a matter led by Howard R Weingrad,¬†and Allison Fitzpatrick¬†and associate Rohini Gokhale's coordination of a global review¬†for 2K Games¬†in relation to¬†two¬†competitions offering¬†substantial cash prizes.¬†'True expert' Ronald Urbach¬†and Richard Eisert, who¬†attracts praise for his 'strong grasp of the regulatory background', jointly head the group, which 'never misses a step to remain ahead of the concerns and how to educate their clients'. Other names to note include Joseph Lewczak,¬†the ‚Äėbrilliant‚Äô Ashima Dayal¬†and Aaron Taylor.¬†Vejay Lalla¬†left for¬†Fenwick & West LLP.

The New York-based advertising, marketing and public relations group at Frankfurt Kurnit Klein & Selz PC boasts impressive capabilities advising a range of brands spanning from PepsiCo and Domino’s Pizza to BIC USA, and also agencies such as Crispin Porter + Bogusky and Wieden & Kennedy. A particular work highlight was acting for Epic Games regarding a multitude of advertising and intellectual property matters, including structuring its influencer and generated art programs and putting their content into television commercials. The team also has experience assisting disruptive businesses and counts Etsy, thredUP and Glossier among its clients in this sector. Recently promoted partner Hannah Taylor is assisting Lidl with several advertising matters since entering the US market, including regulatory advice. Terri Seligman and Rick Kurnit jointly lead the group which also includes, Jeffrey Greenbaum, Brian Murphy, Candice Kersh, Christopher Chase, Gavin McElroy.

Fielding an interdisciplinary team based across the firm's New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Nashville and Washington DC offices, Loeb & Loeb LLP combines media, technology, data and regulatory expertise in marketing and advertising matters. The team's impressive client roster includes Toyota, Comcast Cable Communications and Visa. In a recent work highlight the practice assisted the latter with negotiations with the International Olympic Committee to extend its Olympic sponsorship for another 12 years. Noteworthy is also the firm's advice to Amazon on mobile marketing and text messaging promotional campaigns, including advising on the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA); the matter is led by Brian Nixon, intellectual property expert Melanie Howard (both in LA) and New York-based David Mallen. Chicago-based Seth Rose is advising T-Mobile USA on celebrity talent and endorsement deals and sponsorship arrangements. In addition to acting for prominent brands, the team also assists leading agencies, such as several Publicis Groupe agencies. Kenneth Florin and James Taylor in New York and Nathan Hole in Chicago jointly head the practice which was bolstered by the additions of Chicago-based partners Brian Heidelberger, Monique Bhargava and Robert Newman from Winston & Strawn LLP in May 2018.

Baker & Hostetler LLP's advertising, marketing and digital media practice led by Linda A. Goldstein continues to grow and has seen additions to its impressive client roster, such as new clients The Kellogg Company, Kraft Heinz Company, Sears Holding Corp and Danone Wave. The firm also acts for the largest publishing company in the US and is advising its content creation agency division on developing guidelines for the disclosure of various forms of native advertising content, as well as frequently handling the review and clearance of their native advertising campaigns. The team is equally adept at handling a range of regulatory challenges and investigations and recently acted for a multinational pharmaceutical company in a NAD challenge by its foot care brand to product claims made by a competitor, which resulted in referrals to the FTC and Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The practice was bolstered with the additions of Washington DC-based Amy Mudge and Randal Shaheen from Venable LLP, who are assisting a global nutritional company on due diligence relating to its acquisition of an iconic brand of weight loss products, and reviewing the acquired company’s advertising and marketing materials. Los Angeles-based Alan L. Friel assisted My College Options, a marketing and data broker company for colleges and post-graduate opportunities, on a range of advertising, privacy and consumer protection issues. Holly Melton left the practice to Crowell & Moring LLP.

Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP's interdisciplinary advertising, marketing and media practice offers a range of legal, regulatory and strategic advice to brands and agencies. Kia Motors America is a key client for the group, and recent work has included advising Brandon Maxwell on all contracts for its New York Fashion Week installation and assisting Cincinnati Bengals with drafting terms and conditions for its Test Drive For Tickets promotion. New York-based Jeffrey Edelstein and Jesse Brody in Los Angeles are the key names to note; the former leads a team advising advertising agency BBDO on several advertising campaigns, including on sports sponsorships and designing a commercial for the Winter Olympics. Brody acts for Facebook regarding the review of advertising relating to the launch of new major product and is assisting Facebook Technologies on several matters including a promotional agreement with Stack Up, a sponsorship agreement with Special Olympics and a product placement agreement for an upcoming Netflix feature. The team was strengthened with the addition of Po Yi from Venable LLP, but saw the departure of T. Hale Boggs to O'Melveny & Myers LLP and Shari Wollman to an in-house role at Mattel.

Trusted Advisor - with Finnegan

In a cross-platform collaboration between GC magazine and leading IP law firm Finnegan, key partners and senior in-house clients explore the challenges for women in assuming leadership roles in the legal profession.

The advertising and marketing practice at Reed Smith LLP, based largely in New York, attracts praise for its 'holistic guidance' combining 'extensive knowledge in media law both domestically and internationally' with 'broad expertise of working with all sides of advertising, including advertisers, agencies, regulators'. Practice head Douglas Wood is highly regarded both for 'his passion' and 'expertise in media law' with experience handling a range of advertising, marketing, promotions, unfair competition, intellectual property and e-commerce matters. Other key names to note include Washington-based John Feldman, who combines advisory and litigation experience, 'stand out lawyer' Stacy Marcus, Keri Bruce and recently promoted partner Jason Gordon in Chicago.

Venable LLP continues to enjoy a good reputation for assisting brands ranging from start-ups to multinational corporations on a range of transactional and regulatory matters. Practice head Jeffrey Knowles has impressive experience in the sector and recently advised Fashion Nova on Federal Trade Commission (FTC) investigations relating to its shipping claims and practices. The team is also assisting the client with its social media influencer program and contracts with celebrities, including Kanye West. Another client is London-based promotions agency Prizeology regarding the coordination of a legal review for a user-generated content contests across more than 20 countries. Melissa Steinman boasts particular expertise in promotions and online gaming and is leading the firm's advice to Whole Foods Markets on state and local law regulatory considerations relating to the implementation of a loyalty rewards program. Other key names to note include Stuart Ingis, particularly for privacy and e-commerce, regulatory lawyer Ellen Berge and New York-based litigator Leonard Gordon, who co-heads the practice alongside Knowles and frequently represents clients in NAD challenges and FTC investigations. All individuals mentioned are based in Washington DC, except where otherwise specified. Changes to the team include the departures of Amy Mudge and Randal Shaheen, who left to Baker & Hostetler LLP and Po Yi who joined Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP.

DLA Piper LLP (US)'s advertising capabilities were strengthened by the arrivals of new practice heads Benjamin Mulcahy and Gina Reif Ilardi from Jenner & Block LLP, based in Los Angeles and New York respectively. The team is predominantly known for brand-side representation and recently acted for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles in several matters including a multi-platform advertising initiative with the Apple Music and Beats Electronics,  a joint promotion arrangement with Universal Pictures relating to the release of the motion picture Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom and an online and mobile teaser campaign featuring Vin Diesel leading up to the public launch of the Dodge Challenger SRT Demon. It also assisted social gaming platform Twitch Interactive with various sponsorship, strategy and eSports team initiatives. On agency-side the firm advised United Entertainment Group on agreements with Capitol Records, Spotify and emerging artist Maggie Rogers to create a smart-phone application to launch a new North Face product.

Katten has experience spanning from the consumer products, fashion, food and beverage and luxury sectors to technology and software and the medical, sport and gaming industries. The group handles a range of contractual issues and sponsorship agreements for its impressive client roster that includes Calvin Klein, Agave Loco and PepsiCo. The team also continues to act for the Chicago White Sox, Chicago Bulls and Chicago Blackhawks in connection with new telecast rights agreements and sponsorship agreements, and advised the Bulls on the negotiation of documents related to obtaining the right to host the NBA All Star Game at the United Center. New York-based Doron Goldstein heads the practice alongside Kristin Achterhof in Chicago. Other key names to note include Floyd Mandell, also in Chicago, and intellectual property partner Sean Wooden who recently joined the Washington DC office from Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP's legacy firm, Andrews Kurth Kenyon LLP.

Agencies, advertisers, media outlets, digital ad-tech companies, internet publishers and other content providers frequently seek advice from Michelman & Robinson, LLP's advertising and digital media practice on a range of matters. In recent work, the firm advised Yamaha Guitar Group on the review of its website, materials and guidelines relating to advertising, social media and marketing, and assisted AirFrance with advertising compliance matters including in connection with contest and sweepstakes and in structuring gift cards and reward programs. The team also acted for MediaLink regarding its $207m sale to UK-based international business-to-business media firm, Ascential. Ronald Camhi in Los Angeles and Adam Solomon in New York jointly lead the practice that also counts TLC Marketing, Groupon and Brookstone Company among its clients.

The advertising, marketing and promotions group at Olshan Frome Wolosky LLP is known particularly for its capabilities handling sweepstakes and contests, advertising clearance, and advising on direct marketing law and in regulatory investigations. Andrew Lustigman heads up the practice which recently acted for Baked by Melissa on structuring and drafting rules for the Baked by Melissa Golden Cupcake contest, assisted social media marketing Fooji with sweepstake promotions and advised Golfballs on its structured promotion for a giveaway which included a grand prize of a golf lesson with Tiger Woods. Other key names to note include Tamara Carmichael and Scott Shaffer. All referenced attorneys are based in New York.

Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP's practice has particular experience handling marketing and advertising matters in the entertainment, sports, fashion and technology sectors. San Francisco-based Brian Anderson is a key name to note for transactional work; he advised Mastercard on its multi-year multi-million dollar agreement with Riot Games for the global sponsorship of the studio’s online multiplayer game, League of Legends. Anderson, alongside David Sands in Los Angeles, also assisted Kathy Ireland Health & Wellness with its multi-million dollar licensing agreement with Isodiol International to develop and market Kathy Ireland-branded Cannabidiol products. Another work highlight was Century City-based Shaun Clark's representation of Fashion Nova in a fashion collaboration with hip-hop star, Cardi B. The team was bolstered with the addition of Sid Forhman from Barnes & Thornburg LLP.

Cyber law (including data privacy and data protection)

Index of tables

  1. Cyber law (including data privacy and data protection)
  2. Data Privacy and Data Protection
  3. Leading lawyers: Hall of Fame
  4. Leading lawyers
  5. Next Generation Partners
  6. Rising stars

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Rising stars

  1. 1
Clifford Chance Ė Their Voices

Baker McKenzie LLP assists clients with a full spectrum of cybersecurity and data protection matters, including advisory work, transactions and crisis management, data breaches and incident prevention and response, regulatory and internal investigations, disputes and litigation. The practice is headed by Chicago-based Brian Hengesbaugh. Other names to note are Washington DC-based David Lashway, who is well versed in cybersecurity, crisis management, internal investigations, and complex criminal, civil and administrative litigation; John Woods (DC), Michael Egan (Boston) and Jennifer Seale (DC); Palo Alto-based Lothar Determann, who specializes in CCPA; Chicago-based Amy de La Lama; and associate Brandon Moseberry in Chicago. The client portfolio includes Booking, Geotab and Pizza Hut.

DLA Piper LLP (US)¬†assists clients with compliance in relation to transnational, federal and state privacy and security regulations, industry best practices and self-regulatory initiatives. Based in Washington DC, practice head Jim Halpert¬†has been advising the State Privacy and Security Coalition on stopping a number of bills which reintroduced at the state level asymmetrical ISP-only privacy rules from the FCC, repealed by Congress in March 2018.¬† Miami-based¬†Carol Umhoefer¬†has been assisting Pfizer with all aspects of its GDPR compliance program, while Atlanta-based Saxby Chambliss¬†has been working with the US Chamber of Commerce on a report on the importance of reducing barriers to transnational sharing of cybersecurity threat information. San Francisco‚Äôs Rena Mears, who is well versed in privacy and cybersecurity assessments, program and control design, data mapping and program and vendor-risk management, is another key contact.¬†Margo Tank¬†joined the Washington DC office from¬†Buckley LLP¬†in January 2018, and¬†Andrew Serwin,¬†‚Äėa person of rare skills', joined the San Diego office from Morrison & Foerster LLP¬†in 2019.

Hogan Lovells US LLP¬†provides ‚Äėtremendous help‚Äô to global businesses on cybersecurity governance, compliance and risk management ‚Äď particularly with reference to the EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) - as well as breach response and litigation resulting from high-profile data breaches. The practice is headed by the ‚Äėkey author of privacy regulations‚Äô,¬†Marcy Wilder, who specializes in complex cyber-attacks, privacy investigations and data protection work in digital health, and Harriet Pearson. Pearsonhas been assisting consumer credit reporting agency Equifax before the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) with regard to the client‚Äôs 2017 data breach, which affected 145m consumers. Uber and Salesforce are other notable clients. Key contacts also include litigator Michelle Kisloff, the ‚Äėhighly skilled‚Äô Bret Cohen, senior counsel¬†Christopher Wolf¬†and senior associate Paul Otto, who is ‚Äėvery well versed in technical matters‚Äô. Named individuals are based in Washington DC.

The 'excellent‚Äô Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP¬†specializes in large-scale cybersecurity attacks, implementation of GDPR requirements for US-based multinational companies, board advisory work on privacy and data protection, international data transfer mechanisms, compliance with CCPA and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), and preparation and prevention of cyber events. Practice head¬†Lisa Sotto¬†has been assisting Yahoo! with two huge cyber-attacks and related class action lawsuits and, together with Brittany Bacon, who was made partner in April 2018, has been advising companies such as Western Union and Tiffany on global data protection and privacy. The ‚Äėincredible‚Äô¬†Aaron Simpson¬†and Washington DC-based Phyllis Marcus¬†and Paul Tiao¬†are other key contacts. Named individuals are based in New York unless otherwise indicated.

‚ÄėAt the top of its game‚Äô,¬†Morrison & Foerster LLP¬†focuses on high-profile data breaches, enforcement actions and privacy compliance matters. Clients span the consumer products, manufacturing, retail, healthcare, pharmaceutical, transportation, food and beverage, hospitality, insurance and financial sectors. New-York based co-head¬†Miriam Wugmeister‚Äôs ‚Äėguidance and experience is invaluable‚Äô. She has been assisting a number of global industry leaders with their compliance with GDPR and CCPA.¬†Julie O‚ÄôNeill¬†and Purvi Patel, who are based in Washington DC/Boston and Los Angeles respectively, have been acting for Unity Technologies in two putative class actions alleging the violation of the Children‚Äôs Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) by Disney and Viacom mobile gaming apps, which use the client‚Äôs software. The ‚Äėmaster‚Äô Nathan Taylor¬†and¬†John Carlin¬†(both based in Washington DC) and New York-based associate¬†Melissa Crespo¬†are other key team members.¬†Kristen Mathews¬†joined the New York office from¬†Proskauer Rose LLP¬†in March 2019.

In January 2019, the ‚Äėunusually skilled litigator‚Äô Douglas Meal,¬†Heather Sussman,¬†Michelle Visser¬†and¬†Seth Harrington¬†joined¬†Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP¬†from Ropes & Gray LLP. Sussman leads the newly launched Boston office, which also includes Meal and Harrington; Visser is based in San Francisco. Aravind Swaminathan, who is based in Seattle and co-heads the practice with Washington DC‚Äôs Antony Kim, has been advising the City of Seattle on data privacy and security matters, including data sharing restrictions, protection of law enforcement and sensitive information, public records management requiring technical cyber intelligence as well as the privacy ramifications of new technologies. The team has also acted successfully for Microsoft in a dispute against the US Government, in which the latter‚Äôs ability to obtain emails stored on servers in Ireland was challenged.

Baker & Hostetler LLP specializes in regulatory and litigation issues, focusing on security and risk assessments, proactive training for incident response and compliance counseling, as well as on legal matters related to blockchain, digital currency and artificial intelligence. Practice head Theodore Kobus III from the New York office and Cincinnati-based Craig Hoffman have been advising cable, satellite and broadcast television network QVC on general privacy compliance, including compliance with CCPA, and data incident response plans. The team has also been defending hotel chain Marriott in a number of class actions generated from the massive data breach reported by the client in September 2018. Forever 21 and Hawaii Electric are other notable clients. Washington DC’s Laura Jehl, Houston’s Will Daugherty and New York’s Melinda McLellan are also recommended.

Cooley LLP bases its activities on compliance and strategy, transactional support to clients, breach preparedness and response, as well as privacy and data security litigation and investigation. The practice is headed by San Francisco-based Michael Rhodes and Matthew Brown, who successfully defended Facebook in a number of class actions filed across the country and following the client’s alleged use of 'browser cookies'. The team has also acted in class action litigation for Google, whose product Gmail had allegedly violated the California Invasion of Privacy Act and the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, and for Here Media, dismissing the claim that the client had failed to keep subscribers’ sensitive information secure. Colorado-based David Navetta and New York’s Boris Segalis, who have been advising life science companies, insurance brokers, financial institutions, media organization and retailers on GDPR compliance, are other key members of the team. In January 2019, litigator Travis LeBlanc joined the Washington DC and San Francisco offices from Boies Schiller Flexner LLP.

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP¬†has ‚Äėvery deep expertise‚Äô in a wide range of cybersecurity matters, including incident preparation, response and investigation, related civil litigation and regulatory defense, and national security issues. The practice is headed by Washington DC‚Äôs Luke Dembosky, who is ‚Äėa trusted adviser¬†in very high-stress, high-risk situations‚Äô, and New York‚Äôs Jeremy Feigelson. New York‚Äôs Jim Pastore¬†is ‚Äėincredibly knowledgeable, precise and detailed‚Äô. The team has been advising PayPal, the NBA and other clients on privacy and data security issues, including compliance with GDPR and CCPA. Other highlights include assisting Royal Bank of Canada with the response to a data breach at the client's vendor Expedia.

As ‚Äėone of the most responsive and attentive data security law firms‚Äô,¬†Goodwin¬†is experienced in data breaches and incident response, regulatory investigations, litigation, transactions and M&A, and advice on GDPR. Practice head¬†Brenda Sharton¬†‚Äėhas been advising clients since the early days of data security and privacy‚Äô. Highlights include assisting cloud-based identity and access management provider OneLogin with a data breach in which an unauthorized user gained access to the client‚Äôs US database, and acting for several businesses in consumer class actions, government investigations and enforcement actions alleging violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). Washington-DC based Karen Neuman¬†and the ‚Äėvery notable‚Äô David Kantrowitz, who was made counsel in January 2019, are other key contacts. Named individuals are based in Boston unless otherwise indicated.

Latham & Watkins LLP's data privacy and security team is headed by Washington DC’s Jennifer Archie, San Francisco’s Michael Rubin and New York’s Serrin Turner. Archie has been advising consumer electronics company Vizio on global data privacy and security matters, including the client’s potential expansion of smart television sales outside the US and into markets with different data protection laws. Rubin and Serrin have been assisting Facebook as leading global counsel with the investigation, preparation and handling of regulatory submissions and litigation in relation to the client’s September 2018 data breach. The client portfolio also includes Apple, Lyft and LG Electronics.

Brian Finch and Deborah Thoren-Peden head Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP’s practice from Washington DC and Los Angeles respectively. Finch specializes in cybersecurity, national defense and intelligence policies, while Thoren-Pedersen has advised US-based fintech and bank holding company Green Dot on regulatory and privacy aspects of its acquisition of online distribution channel AccountNow. Mercedes Tunstall, who is also based in Washington DC, assists clients from a wide range of industries with mobile and other e-commerce initiatives, as well as with the use of social networking sites for marketing, customer service and crowdsourcing purposes. Los Angeles-based senior counsel Catherine Meyer, who works with financial institutions, is another name to note.

‚ÄėOn the leading edge‚Äô of cyber law, Proskauer Rose LLP¬†has longstanding experience in privacy and data security compliance, corporate transactions, litigation, labor and employment and healthcare. Litigator Margaret Dale, who is ‚Äėcalm and confident in the stressful cyber law environment‚Äô, advised men's clothing retailer Charles Tyrwhitt on a putative class action brought against the client under the Wiretap Act, obtaining a complete dismissal. Other clients include companies from the telecoms, financial services, insurance, utilities, arts and sport sectors. Associate Tiffany Quach¬†is ‚Äėfantastic to work with‚Äô.¬†Kristen Mathews¬†joined¬†Morrison & Foerster LLP¬†in March 2019. All named individuals are based in New York

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Reed Smith LLP focuses on litigation, data breaches, compliance and risk management and FTC enforcement. The practice, headed by New York’s Anthony Diana, has been acting as leading counsel on privacy and cybersecurity matters for companies across various industries, including advertisement, healthcare, finance and manufacturing. Diana and Therese Craparo, who is also in New York, have been advising a client on data risk management related to the divestiture of its businesses worldwide. Washington DC’s Gerry Stegmaier, who specializes as a litigator in corporate governance, IP and internet issues, is another name to note. Counsel Xiaoyan Zhang joined the San Francisco office from Mayer Brown, while Mark Melodia and Paul Bond left to Holland & Knight LLP.

Steptoe & Johnson LLP advises clients on global privacy and data security issues, including data breach prevention and response, compliance, regulatory investigations and class action lawsuits following data breaches. New York-based practice head Michael Vatis has been assisting the global supplier of electronic learning products for children, VTech, with the response to a hack of customer information and the resulting US and international regulatory enforcement investigations. Other key team members of the Washington DC office include Alan Cohn, who specializes in cybersecurity, blockchain and distributed ledger technology issues, Stewart Baker and cryptocurrency expert Jason Weinstein.

The ‚Äėup-to-date and comprehensive‚Äô Washington DC-based¬†e-commerce, privacy and cybersecurity¬†team at¬†Venable LLP¬†is headed by ‚Äėtop privacy lawyer‚Äô Stuart Ingis¬†and Emilio Cividanes, who specialize in crisis management and class action litigation, representing clients before Congress, the FTC and other institutions and agencies. Michael Signorelli¬†advises marketers, advertisers, trade associations, e-commerce firms, retailers, social platforms and technology providers on privacy and consumer protection matters. Highlights included acting as general and policy counsel for the Digital Advertising Alliance (DAA) and assisting the American Association of Advertising Agencies (4A) with GDPR compliance. Thomas Boyd¬†joined from¬†DLA Piper LLP (US)¬†in May 2018.

At the ‚Äėvery responsive and creative‚Äô WilmerHale, D Reed Freeman,¬†who heads the practice with the ‚Äėpractical and always available‚Äô Benjamin Powell, has been assisting a fintech company on privacy and data security issues in relation to its use of transaction data to provide advanced analytics, insights, and advertising services to clients. Heather Zachary¬†has been advising Barclays on a joint venture involving the development and launch of an innovative payment technology platform. The client portfolio also includes Google, Adobe and Boeing. All named individuals are based in Washington DC.

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP assists clients with a wide range of cybersecurity matters, including advocacy and counseling on the CCPA and other regulatory frameworks, compliance work, M&A diligence, data sharing agreements, board advisory work, innovation-related services as well as investigation and litigation. The practice is co-headed by Natasha Kohne and Michelle Reed, who are based in San Francisco and Dallas respectively. Kohne has been advising clothing manufacturer Alpha Industries on the management of an intrusion suffered by the provider of a digital commerce platform used by the client on its website. Reed assisted Texas-based tax and accounting firm Honza with a data breach involving stolen client information. Washington DC’s senior counsel Jo-Ellyn Sakowitz Klein is another name to note. Consumer class action litigators Meredith Slawe, Kathryn Deal and Michael Stortz joined from Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP in 2018.

At Arnold & Porter, Ronald Lee specializes in national security, cybersecurity, and government contracts matters. He and counsel Nancy Perkins have been advising clients on legal and policy aspects of internet, computer networks and cyber operations, including criminal and civil provisions, privacy, intellectual property and encryption. Litigator Kenneth Chernof acted for travel technology company Sabre in obtaining dismissal of a putative class action following a data security incident that affected the client’s reservation technology. New York-based Marcus Asner, who focuses on data breaches, cyber  crime, identity theft and credit card bust-out schemes, is another key contact. Named individuals are based in Washington DC unless otherwise specified.

The ‚Äėvery accomplished and expert‚Äô Richard Eisert¬†and Gary Kibel¬†head Davis & Gilbert LLP‚Äôs New York-based practice. The team is well known for advising clients with ‚Äėintelligence, confidence and clarity‚Äô, particularly on¬†data privacy and security issues related to¬†advertising, marketing and sales promotion law. Highlights included assisting a number of advertising agencies and brands with reviewing their ad tracking activities and promotions in compliance with the Children‚Äôs Online Privacy Protection Rule (COPPA). Counsel Oriyan Gitig, who assists clients with new media, technology and software development, licensing, advertising and intellectual property, ‚Äėexemplifies what an attorney and a professional should be‚Äô.

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP assists clients with investigations by the FTC and other regulatory bodies, EU data protection authorities’ enforcement, consumer class action litigation as well as criminal referrals and responses to regulatory inquiries. New York-based practice head Alexander Southwell and San Francisco’s Kristin Linsley have been acting for Facebook in a number of consumer privacy actions related to Cambridge Analytica’s alleged misuse of the client’s user data. Michael Li-Ming Wong, who splits between San Francisco and Palo Alto, and Los Angeles-based Eric Vandevelde have been advising Yahoo! on its opposition to plaintiffs’ motion for class certification in relation to the client’s 2016 announcement of two of the largest data breaches in the history of the internet. Uber and MySpace are other notable clients.

Kelley Drye & Warren LLP focuses on the intersection of privacy law, advertising and marketing law, and communications law, specializing in government investigations, practical compliance, and privacy and data protection disputes. Practice head Dana Rosenfeld advises Disney on a wide range of privacy and marketing issues, while Alysa Hutnik has been representing long-term client Dish Network before the FTC in a number of matters involving telemarketing compliance. The client portfolio also includes Bacardi and Harvard Business Publishing. Associate Jennifer Wainwright is recommended for her regulatory and transactional work with communications service providers. Named individuals are based in Washington DC.

Loeb & Loeb LLP’s practice is jointly led by New York-based Ieuan Jolly and Jessica Lee as well as Chicago’s Robert Newman, who joined the team with Monique Bhargava from Winston & Strawn LLP in May 2018. Jolly and Lee have been advising advertising and public relations companies as well as Regeneron Pharmaceuticals on their respective GDPR compliance projects, while Newman has been assisting clients with consumer data collection use and technological innovations. The chair of the New York-based advanced media and technology practice James Taylor is also well versed in data privacy and data protection work.

Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP assists clients with litigation and enforcement, data breach response and preparedness, and privacy and data security counseling, with a specific focus on the healthcare industry. The practice, headed by Los Angeles-based litigator Donna Wilson, has been advising the California Health Care Foundation (CHCF) on compliance programs with various regulatory contexts, including HIPAA and TCPA, as well as on the production of a white paper discussing the challenges of data sharing in the fight against the opioid epidemic. New York eHealth Collaborative, Kia Motors and fashion retailer New York & Company are other key clients. Healthcare specialist Robert Belfort from the New York office and Orange County-based associate Brandon Reilly are also recommended.

Mayer Brown¬†handles work in incident preparation and breach response, litigation and government investigations, strategic counseling and corporate governance, vendor and supply-chain management, contracting and data transfers, regulatory and compliance, as well as policy and advocacy. Practice head Rajesh De¬†is based in Washington DC and specializes in legal and policy issues related to technology, national security, law enforcement and privacy. New York‚Äôs Lauren Goldman, who works in a ‚Äėwell-reasoned, concise, well-organized, and business-focused‚Äô way, acted successfully for Facebook in the purported Smith v Facebook class action, defending the client from the allegation of having used cookies to communicate with various healthcare websites and then used that information for marketing purposes. Shutterfly and Twitter are other notable clients. Washington DC‚Äôs Marcus Christian¬†and Los-Angeles-based litigator John Nadolenco¬†are also recommended.

The McGuireWoods LLP¬†team¬†has ‚Äėcritical legal and technical expertise‚Äô. Tysons-based practice head¬†Andrew Konia¬†‚Äėprovides excellent customer service and attention to detail‚Äô, advising clients on information governance, data protection programs and data breach response, as well as on privacy and security issues in vendor contracts and M&A and private equity transactions. Senior counsel Nathan Kottkamp, who is based in Richmond, has been assisting KPMG with its HIPAA work. Other key clients come from the telecoms, healthcare and transportation sectors. Charlottesville-based associate Ashley Matthews ¬†is ‚Äėa terrific lawyer‚Äô. In October 2018, Michael Adams left the practice and joined Palantir Technologies as senior executive in a non-legal position.

Ropes & Gray LLP’s areas of strength include privacy and security compliance, data breaches and intrusions, investigation defense and settlement negotiations as well as the development and implementation of corrective action plans. The practice is headed by Boston’s Marc Szpak, whose team has been assisting fast-food restaurant chain Arby’s against all third-party claims arising from a security breach which targeted customers’ payment card data. Other highlights included advising Nationwide Mutual Insurance Group on a 2012 cyber attack which has generated a number of class actions against the client. Marc Barnes and Deborah Gersh (from Boston and Chicago respectively) are recommended for healthcare work, while Boston’s Richard Batchelder is the name to note for litigation. In January 2019, Heather Sussman, Douglas Meal, Michelle Visser and Seth Harrington joined Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP.

Along with compliance work, breach management and litigation, the ‚Äėincredibly client-focused‚Äô Seyfarth Shaw LLP¬†specializes in automotive telematics, blockchain, IoT, big data and usage-based insurance. The practice is jointly headed by Houston‚Äôs ‚Äėtrue expert‚Äô John Tomaszewski ¬†and security expert Scott Carlson¬†from the Chicago office. Tomaszewski and San Francisco‚Äôs Richard Lutkus, who is well versed in data security and encryption, assisted human resources services and technology company Morneau Shepell with due diligence for its acquisition of LifeWorks. Chicago-based Bart Lazar¬†has been advising a leading strategic communication firm and a well-known apparel manufacturer on GDPR compliance.

Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP¬†is ‚Äėvery knowledgeable‚Äô in data breach, class action and litigation, technology transactions and privacy counseling as well as cybersecurity matters. The practice is headed by ‚Äėstandout‚Äô Liisa Thomas¬†and Craig Cardon, who are based in Chicago and Century City respectively. Thomas, Cardon and New York‚Äôs Kari Rollins¬†acted for fast-food brand Sonic as breach response and litigation counsel in connection with a data breach suffered by the client‚Äôs drive-in restaurants in 2017 and following class actions. San Diego‚Äôs Dr Shannon Petersen¬†assisted weight loss company Jenny Craig with a putative class action alleging the client‚Äôs violation of TCPA. Christine Clements, who specializes in HIPAA, joined the Washington DC office from¬†Crowell & Moring LLP¬†in April 2018.

Washington DC-based Buckley LLP has longstanding experience in advising financial services companies on cybersecurity and privacy-related matters. Key practitioners are Elizabeth McGinn, who specializes in risk evaluation and management as well as information security practices, litigator Antonio Reynolds, and regulatory expert Jeffrey Naimon. In 2018, former practice head Margo Tank joined DLA Piper LLP (US) and James Shreve left to Thompson Coburn LLP, while white-collar crime litigator Henry Asbill joined from Jones Day.

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton assists clients with data protection regulation compliance in multiple jurisdictions, incident notification and response, privacy and cybersecurity provisions in vendor contracts, data usage and litigation. Litigator Jonathan Kolodner and IP transaction expert Daniel Ilan jointly head the practice. Highlights included advising Canada-based software company OpenText on data breaches, cybersecurity and privacy related to M&A and SEC disclosures, and assisting multinational conglomerate Honeywell with data transfer issues and global compliance with privacy and data protection laws. Washington DC-based Katherine Mooney Carroll  specializes in advice to financial institutions. Rahul Mukhi and Washington DC’s Alexis Collins were made partners in January 2019. Named individuals are based in New York unless otherwise specified.

Clifford Chance¬†has a cross-disciplinary practice which handles privacy and cybersecurity matters in relation to IP, antitrust, corporate transactions and litigation. The practice is headed by Megan Gordon, who is based in Washington DC and specializes in risk management, transactional due diligence, compliance and internal investigations, and the ‚Äėwonderful‚Äô Daniel Silver from the New York office, whose expertise as a litigator includes regulatory enforcement and white-collar criminal defense. Key clients are from the financial, technology, media and telecoms, consumer goods and retail and automotive sectors. Washington DC‚Äôs Steven Gatti, who is well versed in regulatory matters across the financial services sector, is another name to note.

The ‚Äėsuper pragmatic‚Äô team at Fenwick & West LLP¬†has strong expertise in technology, focusing on matters related to digital health, biotech and life sciences, financial services and fintech, cryptocurrency and blockchain, gaming, consumer products as well as regulatory investigation, enforcement and class action litigation. The ‚Äėexcellent‚Äô Jim Koenig¬†and Tyler Newby¬†lead the practice from New York and San Francisco respectively. Highlights included assisting Uber with an FTC case in which the client has agreed to comply with an FTC consent decree concerning the creation of a system which allows Uber‚Äôs CEO and employees to access riders' and drivers‚Äô location and personal information; the decree was revised after it was revealed that the client had failed to disclose information on security incidents in 2014 and 2016, in which millions of Uber riders' and drivers' data was accessed. Facebook, Vizio and Otsuka Pharmaceutical are other notable clients. San Francisco‚Äôs Barbara Sondag¬†and Mountain View‚Äôs James Gregoire¬†are also recommended.

The ‚Äėamazing‚Äô Frankfurt Kurnit Klein & Selz PC¬†is well known for its expertise in cybersecurity and privacy matters in the field of digital advertising and publishing. The ‚Äėincredibly responsive‚Äô practice head Tanya Forsheit¬†is ‚Äėeverything you could ask for in an outside counsel‚Äô. She and counsel Daniel Goldberg, who is also recommended, have been advising media conglomerate Meredith Corporation on compliance with GDPR. The client base also includes Dunkin‚Äô and TaskRabbit. The ‚Äėoutstanding‚Äô Gregory Boyd¬†and Sean Kane¬†from the New York office are other names to note. Named individuals are based in Los Angeles unless otherwise indicated.

Jenner & Block LLP’s areas of strength include privacy and data security issues, policy audits related to relevant legislation, customized compliance programs as well as investigations, enforcement and litigation. Key clients are companies from the media and entertainment, advertising, gaming and financial sectors. The names to note are Washington DC’s David Bitkower, who specializes in investigations, compliance and defense; litigators David Saunders and David Layden, who are based in Chicago; and Washington DC’s Keisha Stanford, who assists clients with compliance, white-collar criminal defense, government enforcement and internal investigations. Former practice head Nancy Libin moved to Davis Wright Tremaine LLP in September 2018.

The ‚Äėtop-notch‚Äô Jones Day¬†team is headed by Los Angeles‚Äô Daniel McLoon. He and litigators John Vogt¬†and Adam Wiers¬†(based in Irvine and Chicago respectively) have acted for Experian in class actions related to the client‚Äôs alleged violation of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and to an identity thief accessing consumer records from databases allegedly owned by the client and two other companies. New York‚Äôs Mauricio Paez¬†has been advising Cardinal Health on data protection matters concerning the acquisition of new businesses and the implementation of a local data protection compliance program in various countries. Boston-based Lisa Ropple, who specializes in breach investigation and response, is ‚Äėa joy to work with‚Äô.

Headed by Ted Augustinos¬†in Hartford and Molly McGinnis Stine¬†in Chicago,¬†Locke Lord LLP¬†has ‚Äėgreat depth of experience and knowledge‚Äô. Augustinos has been assisting financial services holding company Torchmark with the design and delivery of education programs for producers focusing on compliance with the New York Department of Financial Services Cybersecurity Regulation. Houston‚Äôs Laura Ferguson, who specializes in employee benefits and privacy matters, is ‚Äėa valuable and very responsive‚Äô professional. Of counsel Tom Smedinghoff, from the Chicago office, is ‚Äėa top global expert in the field of e-commerce law‚Äô. He‚Äôs been advising Open Identity Exchange (OIX) and OpenID Foundation (OIDF) on the implementation of cross-border online identity management and authentication systems and standards.

The ‚Äėexcellent, practical and efficient‚Äô McDermott Will & Emery LLP‚Äôs practice is jointly headed from Boston, Los Angeles and Chicago by the ‚Äėextremely well-versed‚Äô Mark Schreiber, Michael Morgan, who ‚Äėhas a phenomenal understanding of his clients‚Äô business needs‚Äô, and Daniel Gottlieb, who ‚Äėis not only creative and smart, but also incredibly pleasant‚Äô. Highlights included assisting software publisher with data protection compliance matters related to the development of a mobile application designed to connect users to decentralized mobile applications that run on blockchain; and advising global provider of equipment and services for electric power systems S&C Electric on its obligations under GDPR.

At Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP, practice leaders Gregory Parks, W. Reece Hirsch  and Mark Krotoski (based in Philadelphia, San Francisco and between Silicon Valley and Washington DC respectively) have been advising a number of companies from the energy, financial, health, hospitality and retail sectors on compliance with CCPA. Parks and Philadelphia’s Ezra Church have been acting for department stores chain Hudson’s Bay in all class actions following a payment cards data incident involving client-owned brand banners Saks Fifth Avenue and Lord & Taylor. Start-up Blink Health, which offers a mobile app for consumers to access discounted medications outside of their health insurance plans, is a key client.

The ‚Äėvery responsive and practical‚Äô team at¬†Paul Hastings LLP¬†is headed by Behnam Dayanim, who specializes in cybersecurity and privacy, fintech and payments as well as advertising and gaming. Dayanim and¬†Robert Silvers¬†acted for international money remittance company MoneyGram before the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) in relation to national security concerns linked to the bid by Ant Financial, a $150bn fintech company backed by Alibaba, to acquire the client. The practice has also been advising Barclays on a number of data security matters. Sherrese Smith, who has in-depth expertise on GDPR legislation, is a ‚Äėgreat leader‚Äô. Named individuals are based in Washington DC.

Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP’s areas of strength include biometric privacy, incident preparation and response, GDPR compliance, vendor management, international data transfer as well as litigation and dispute resolution. Practice head Al Saikali , from the Miami office, has been acting for a number of companies in several class action lawsuits based on alleged violations of the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA). The practice also assisted the village of Wellington in Florida with its response to a 2018 data breach that affected residents who used the Click2Gov application to make payments, such as utility bill, parking ticket and license fee payments. Automotive company JM and Apollo Bank are also clients. Of counsel Camila Tobón, based in Denver, in-depth knowledge of data protection regulations worldwide.

Winston & Strawn LLP is jointly headed by Sheryl Falk in Houston and Steven Grimes, who splits between Chicago and Hong Kong. The practice specializes in privacy assessment, audits and compliance programs, IoT, cloud computing and outsourced technologies, internal forensic investigations, incident response and breach notification, theft of confidential information and trade secrets, data security class action litigation, cross-border data protection and transfer and GDPR compliance. The client portfolio includes companies from healthcare, financial services and telecoms. Robert Newman and Monique Bhargava moved to Loeb & Loeb LLP in May 2018.


Index of tables

  1. Fintech
  2. Leading lawyers
Clifford Chance Ė Their Voices

Latham & Watkins LLP's multi-disciplinary fintech industry group marries the firm's deep experience in handling technology transactions with financial regulatory expertise. The group has a good track record acting for emerging companies, and recently advised Blockchain Luxembourg on the company's $40m series B preferred stock financing. Another client is Thesys CAT regarding advice on legal, governance and compliance matters relating to its work on the US Securities and Exchange Commission's consolidated audit trail (a database designed to track the life cycle of transactions on the US equity and options markets.) New York-based Stephen Wink is leading advice to blockchain company ConsenSys on range of regulatory, tax and technology matters concerning the formation of its venture capital and Token Foundry businesses.  In another work highlight, the practice assisted Dynasty with the establishment of its real estate trading platform. The firm's already impressive bench was further bolstered by the arrival of Todd Beauchamp from Paul Hastings LLP to lead the payments and emerging financial services practice from Washington DC. Former practice head Vivian Maese left the practice to Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP.

Morrison & Foerster LLP boasts extensive financial services regulations experience and leverages an interdepartmental team to handle a breadth of matters in the fintech space, with particular strength in consumer lending and mobile payments. Recent work includes advising online lender Elevate Credit on its IPO and assisting SoftBank Group with several investments in fintech companies including the $500m series F financing of Social Finance and $250m series F financing of Kabbage. The practice acts for both developers and providers of fintech, and also financial institutions investing in technology, including in emerging payment and lending solutions. Other experience includes assisting e-commerce companies in utilising payment technologies. The group is jointly led by financial services expert Obrea Poindexter; Sean Ruff, who has particular experience with funds transmission and related compliance initiatives; corporate partner Eric McCrath in San Francisco; and Palo Alto-based Stephanie Sharron, who handles a range of technology, intellectual property, and data rights issues. The team was further bolstered with the arrival of Susan Gault-Brown from Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, who boasts expertise in securities and derivatives law. All attorneys mentioned are based in Washington DC unless otherwise stated.

Fielding a multidisciplinary team with broad experience, Paul Hastings LLP‚Äôs practice boasts a wide range of capabilities handling matters across the fintech sector. The group's impressive client roster ranges from global corporates, such as Samsung ‚ÄĒ which it advised on a range of privacy, security, data ownership, advertising and marketing issues relating to the launch of Samsung Pay ‚ÄĒ to start-up companies including Even. The firm advised the latter on the launch of its financial health app in collaboration with Wal-Mart. The team has experience assisting clients navigating the cryptocurrency market and regulatory environment; Altanta-based practice head Chris Daniel¬†and cybersecurity and data expert Behnam Dayanim¬†in Washington DC are leading advice to Coinbase on the passing of a North Carolina state house bill allowing cryptocurrency exchanges to operate, as it is exempt from traditional money transmission laws. The group also leverages its M&A capabilities in transactions, such as assisting Moneygram on the recent proposed acquisition by Ant Financial; advising Paysafe Group on US regulatory aspects of its $3.9bn acquisition by Blackstone and CVC Capital Partners; and acting for Circle Internet Financial¬†in connection with elements of its $400m acquisition of Poloniex. Other key names to note include San Francisco-based Thomas Brown, particularly for antitrust and competition in the financial services industry; Washington DC-based¬†of counsel Lawrence Kaplan, who attracts praise for his ‚Äėoutstanding expertise in banking related matters‚Äô; cybersecurity expert Robert Silvers; and structured credit partner Richard Davis¬†(both also based in Washington DC). Silicon Valley Bank, cryptocurrency exchange Gemini Exchange and Barclays are all clients.

Boasting impressive cross-border capabilities, Clifford Chance combines regulatory, transactional and litigation expertise and advises clients on a range of fintech matters, including marketplace lending, blockchain, smart contracts, initial coin offerings, artificial intelligence and insurtech. Its client roster spans from established technology sector players, such as TBG and Imagination Technologies Group plc, to R3 (a consortium of more than financial institutions), and emerging start-ups and scale-ups. In an example of the latter, Gary Boss is advising Slice Insurance Technologies on several corporate and regulatory matters, including on a joint venture with a large US insurance carrier and on the structuring of a similar joint venture in Japan. In another work highlight, David Felsenthal and Washington DC-based litigator Megan Gordon assisted AANDB TECH with privacy policy and terms and conditions relating to the set up of its FINCONECTA initiative, a platform aiming to integrate solutions between fintech companies and financial institutions. The group also has experience representing clients in the ICO market with investigations and enforcement matters. Robert Villani is another key name to note, particularly for capital market related instructions. Except where otherwise stated, all individuals mentioned are based in the firm's New York office.

New York-based David Luce heads DLA Piper LLP (US)’s multidisciplinary fintech and blockchain practice which has expertise handling regulatory, corporate, securities, M&A, capital markets and intellectual property matters. Its impressive client roster ranges from providers of financial infrastructure software, payment solutions, alternative lending platforms and analytics companies to venture capital and those in the insurtech space. The group's broad capabilities include acting for technology companies in financing transactions, such as recently assisting Kabbage with its $525m asset-backed securitization transaction and advising Incorporated, a developer of decentralized conversational AI technology, on its SAFT offering. Other recent work includes assisting sponsors and investors in the cryptocurrency space and advising the firm's broad client base on regulatory issues. The team’s expertise in acting for emerging companies was bolstered by the arrival of Margo Tank in Washington DC and David Whitaker in Chicago from Buckley LLP.

The notable breadth of the interdisciplinary fintech practice at Goodwin spans alternative lending, bank charters and partnerships, digital currency and blockchain technology, insurtech, payments and wealth management matters. Silicon Valley-based Grant Fondo is leading a team representing Tezos Foundation in state and federal securities class actions related to the launch of its blockchain platform. A team also acted for Coinbase in litigation, and successfully limited the scope of US Internal Revenue Service's attempt to use a 'John Doe' summons to obtain records for all account holders. The group's non-contentious experience includes advising Circle Internet Financial, a mobile-payments company, on its acquisition of Poloniex, a leading token exchange and cryptocurrency trading platform, and the formation of crypto-asset funds, Electric Capital Partners and Scalar Capital Management. Washington DC-based counsel David Solander and private investment fund partner Ian O’Donnell in San Francisco jointly lead a team which acts as lead fund and management counsel for Meta Stable and advised the client on restructuring planning and compliance matters. Other key names to note include head of the alternative lending and payments group, Mike Whalen, who is based in Washington DC and Mitzi Chang in San Francisco, who jointly leads the digital currency and blockchain technology practice alongside Fondo. Recent additions to the team include Scott Joachim, who splits his time between the Silicon Valley and New York offices, and David Johanson and Tamira Goldberg who are based in Silicon Valley and New York respectively, and all joined from Fenwick & West LLP.

With significant experience acting for both technology companies and financial institutions Hogan Lovells US LLP offers an impressive breadth of expertise on cryptocurrencies, blockchain technology, smart contracts and AI, among other areas of fintech. The interdisciplinary practice is well-placed to assist emerging companies with a full range of issues and recently advised CertiK on the formation of its smart contract verification business, and on financing, intellectual property, employment and tax matters. The practice is equally adept at assisting financial institutions navigate the regulatory landscape relating to new technologies; Washington DC-based practice head Richard Schaberg is advising Cambridge Bancorp on taking warrants from start-up and early stage innovative borrowers. For blockchain technology Theodore Mlynar is a key name to note; he is acting for start-up company BlockTEST Global and for multinational corporates and other investors in blockchain solutions and cryptocurrencies. Another work highlight for the group was the representation of digital token trading platform EtherDelta in charges for an alleged registration violation with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Nathaniel Gallon is also a key name; he has assisted Santander Fintech Limited with several transactions, including investments in online mortgage provider Roostify and Brazilian start-up Creditas.

The 'business savvy' practice at Mayer Brown is always 'up to date on the latest trends in emerging technology' in the financial sector. The group acts for both traditional financial institutions and established financial technology companies including Paypal and Square, which the team advises on a range of federal and state regulations. Washington DC-based David Beam , who is praised for his 'deep expertise' in this area, and Elizabeth Raymond in Chicago lead a team advising American Express and several of its subsidiaries in connection with a significant restructuring of its alternative payments and prepaid businesses. In another work highlight, a team led by the 'creative and flexible' Jerry Marlatt (who is based in New York) acted for LendingClub Corporation on a $300m consumer loan asset-backed securitization transaction involving the issuance by Consumer Loan Underlying Bond Credit Trust 2018-NP1 of asset-backed notes. The firm also defended NCR Corporation, Capital One, ABNB Federal Credit Union and SunTrust Banks in patent infringement claims brought by Capital Security Systems Corporation relating to the technology used in ATMs. Beam and Raymond head the practice alongside Steven Kaplan and Brad Peterson, who are based in Washington and Chicago respectively. 'Great negotiator' Rohith George in the Palo Alto office is a name to note for technology transformation projects.

With experience handling matters spanning a breadth of financial technologies, including alternative lending platforms, payment solutions, blockchain and AI, Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP's fintech group boasts a client roster ranging from banks, investment funds and other financial institutions to unicorn companies, such as Revolut and Stripe. Silicon Valley-based John Bautista has been advising the latter since its formation and most recently acted for Stripe and Goodwater Capital on a $93m investment round in Monzo. The practice is able to leverage its public policy team to assist clients with the evolving regulatory landscape; the group recently represented OnDeck Capital before the California Department of Business Oversight in its ongoing inquiry into the appropriate state regulatory framework for the online lending industry. In another work highlight, the firm assisted Barclays and RBC Capital Markets as joint lead book-running managers and representatives of the several underwriters with a follow-on public offering by Rapid7. New York-based partners Christopher Austin and Howard Altarescu, who have particular expertise in capital markets and finance respectively, jointly head the team alongside cyber, privacy and data expert Barrie VanBrackle in DC.

The fintech practice at Perkins Coie LLP boasts impressive experience providing regulatory, transactional and strategic advice to clients operating and investing in the financial technology space. Illustrative of the team's expertise in cryptocurrency, Seattle-based practice head Dax Hansen and Marcelo Halpern in Chicago acted for Bloq in its launch of the Metronome (MET) cryptocurrency. The team is also advising Factom on financial regulatory and strategic matters relating to various cryptocurrency, tokenisation and other finance related operations, including cryptocurrency exchanges. In another work highlight, Hansen led a team which assisted Emergent Technology with a range of regulatory and compliance matters. Another client is Expedia, recently regarding the negotiation of a major partnership and services agreements between Expedia and various payment card agreements, and a complex license for financial transaction software. Joe Cutler is a key name to note for litigation, privacy and securities issues.

With impressive experience in the disruptive technology space, Cooley LLP's fintech practice handles a range of corporate, M&A and financing transactions. The group recently advised Avant on its $325m series E financing. It also acted for Velocity Private Equity in the series A financing of financial analytics platform In the M&A space, the practice advised business and financial software company Intuit on its acquisition of Applatix, and assisted Crowdrise with the sale of the company to GoFundMe. The team, led by  Alfred Browne, includes Boston-based commercial litigator Luke Cadigan who is a name to note for securities enforcement matters, internal investigations and regulatory compliance advice. The group added to its financial regulatory capabilities with the arrival of Boston-based Kenneth Juster from White & Case LLP. Marco Santori, a prominent name for blockchain advice, left the team to an in-house role at Blockchain (US).

The New York-based blockchain and financial technology team at Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP fields a multidisciplinary team leveraging corporate, M&A, capital markets, financing, tax, intellectual property and litigation expertise. The group frequently acts for IBM in connection with investments into financial technology companies and advised the client on the formation of TradeLens, a blockchain-enabled shipping solution which was jointly developed by Maersk and IBM. Other recent work ranges from acting for financial technology solutions company DH Corporation on its C$4.8bn sale to Vista Equity Partner and representing American Express (AmEx) in litigation relating to allegations that AmEx and numerous other issuers of credit and charge cards conspired to shift certain costs of fraudulent charges from the card issuers to merchants. Other clients include FactSet and JPMorgan; the group is assisting the former with the $265m acquisition of automated trading solutions developer Portware and acted for the latter in connection with the arrangement of credit facilities totaling $7.55bn made available to Automatic Data Processing. Intellectual property expert David Kappos has particular experience advising on blockchain issues. Corporate partners Scott Bennett and Michael Mariani are other key names to note.

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Dentons is considered 'a one-stop shop for legal services' for its financial technology sector clients. The group includes capital markets experts with significant experience handling matters in the consumer finance regulatory market, with the utilization of blockchain technology and digital currency constituting particular areas of strength. Practice heads John Holahan and Matthew Yoon (who are based in Washington and New York respectively) lead the team, which is also advising Peer Street, a peer to peer real estate lending platform, on a range of regulatory, licensing and real estate matters. The group furthermore counts student lending company CommonBond and Remitly, a consumer international money transfer platform, among its clients. Another key name to note is New York-based Charles Gelinas.

Technology and life sciences specialist firm Fenwick & West LLP attracts praise in particular for its M&A and investments capabilities in the fintech sector. Recent work highlights include acting for a consortium of 35 financial institutions in connection with a $107m capital investment in R3, an enterprise blockchain software firm, and assisting Axiom Zen with its $12 million financing for CryptoKitties, the world’s first game built on the Ethereum network. The firm also advised Redfin Corporation on its $159.2m IPO, a matter led by Seattle-based practice head Alan Smith . Michael Brown, based in the firm's San Francisco office, advised Coinbase on several transactions, including its acquisitions of start-up companies Memo.AI, HardFork and payment platform provider Earn Holdings. Privacy and cyber security group head James Koenig in New York and counsel Daniel Friedberg in Seattle, who heads the firm's payment systems practice, are also key names to note.

Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP frequently advises fintech companies, corporates, global banks, investors and other financial institutions on a range of matters, both as technology provider and customers. Two clients are the alternative lending platforms Lending Club and Ethos Lending, which the group is advising on a range of consumer compliance matters. Other recent work includes defending Kabbage’s core patents in inter partes re-examination proceedings and assisting Cross River Bank in connection with a revolving credit facility with Tally Technologies. Lisa Sotto and Aaron Simpson are key names to note for data privacy and cybersecurity, Jarrett Hale is highlighted for financial services litigation and compliance, and Dallas-based Peter Weinstock acts for financial institutions and financial service franchises on corporate and regulatory matters. The attorneys listed are all based in New York unless otherwise specified.

With 'a depth of industry experience', McGuireWoods LLP's fintech practice group focuses primarily on advising consumer facing companies and offers 'a practical approach to solving problems' and the 'ability to weave a concept into a highly regulated environment'. Its interdepartmental team boasts capabilities in transactional, contentious and regulatory matters and advised AvidXchange on a range of matters, including several financing rounds and its acquisition of Ariett, a leading provider of cloud-based payment software. San Franscisco-based David Reidy, who attracts praise for 'understanding both the client's goal and the constraints to achieve the goal, and still finding a method to a successful outcome', successfully represented Lending Club Corporation in a 'true lender' investigation brought by the West Virginia Attorney General. The group has experience advising on the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and defended Credibly in a class action complaint alleging violation of the act. In other work highlights, it assisted Falfurrias Capital Partners III on investments into financial technologies companies Tax Guard and E-Technologies Group. Other key names to note include Susan Rodriguez in the Charlotte office and Chicago-based Sarah Zielinski for regulatory and commercial litigation respectively. Rodriguez, Zielinski and Reidy jointly lead the practice alongside corporate and securities specialist Richard Viola in Charlotte.

Reed Smith LLP's fintech group, led by Herb Kozlov, boasts a global reach and acts for established, emerging and innovative financial services companies. Key areas of expertise include advising on distributed ledger technology and artificial intelligence for uses including cryptocurrency, smart contacts, payment solutions and alternative lending platforms. The practice regularly provides state and federal regulatory advice relating to the formation of businesses and joint ventures, ICOs and digital assets, and assists clients with other corporate, transactional and intellectual property matters. In addition to its strategic and advisory capabilities, the team includes litigators such as Neil Gray and Los Angeles-based counsel Raymond Kim, who have recently handled SEC investigations and tax-related litigation respectively. Bolstering its strong energy sector expertise, the group frequently advises its energy sector clients on financial technology and blockchain solutions. All attorneys listed are New York-based except where otherwise stated.

Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP's cross-departmental fintech practice group includes lawyers from its corporate and finance, litigation, and intellectual property departments combining 'phenomenal work ethic, insight and deal skills'.¬†The team is particularly adept at handling¬†investments in technology companies for private equity and venture capital clients, which include¬†Genstar Capital and Insight Venture Partners.¬†Jeffrey Poss¬†‚ÄĒ who has attracted praise from one client as being 'the single best transactional attorney with whom they work' ‚ÄĒ led a team alongside partners in London which acted for billing and payment solutions provider OSG Billing Services on its acquisition of London-based Communisis PLC. The practice is also advising BIDS Trading on regulatory matters relating to its¬†partnership with Bats Europe¬†for the creation of a block trading service for the European equity market. The group has been bolstered with the launch of a¬†Palo Alto office led by¬†technology transaction lawyers Tiffany Lee¬†and Matthew Berger¬†who recently joined from Paul Hastings LLP.

The practice at K&L Gates handles a range of regulatory, policy, and business issues surrounding the fintech space. Its multidisciplinary team advises on broad spectrum of securities, commodities, and consumer financial services issues, and fields its M&A, commercial and IP lawyers in corporate transactions. In recent work highlights, it assisted Brazilian-based fintech company NuBank on its $150m series E financing round and advised Wells Fargo as the lead investor on the Series C preferred stock financing of open source artificial intelligence platform The group also acted for AI-X Exchange on the launch of their AI-based product for the inter-dealer broker industry; this included a token offering, seed funding, and additional commercial arrangements, as well as cross-border tax and employment advice. Corporate and transactional lawyer Robert Zinn, who splits his time between New York and Pittsburgh, and expert in prepaid and emerging payments systems Judith Rinearson (who is based both in the firm’s New York and London offices) jointly head the practice, which counts American Express, peer-to-peer lending platform Harmoney and pocket money card provider GoHenry among its clients.

Ropes & Gray LLP has particular experience assisting investment firms with the integration of, and investment in financial technology. Boston-based Edward Black and counsel Edward Baer in San Francisco jointly head the practice group; Black recently led a team which assisted Pacific Investment Management Company with its $20m investment and licensing agreement with Beacon Platform, a developer of cloud-based integrated data and financial analytics platforms. He also advised Willowbridge Associates on several matters including on issues around the acquisition and management of artificial intelligence, data and other technology systems, and in connection with the company’s fintech joint ventures. In another work highlight, the group acted for alternative asset firm TPG Capital and Eze Software (a provider of investment management solutions) in the $1.45bn sale of Eze Software to SS&C Technologies Holdings. Other key names to note include New York-based Sarah Davidoff for her experience handling the formation of funds focused on investing in cryptocurrencies, and IP litigator Leslie Spencer, based in the Silicon Valley office.

Led by corporate and finance partner Joel S. Telpner, the team at Sullivan & Worcester LLP has particular expertise handling matters relating to blockchain technology, including cryptocurrency. The practice advised Oneiro on all stages of the launch of a new cryptocurrency, ndau, including commercial and regulatory issues associated with its ICO. In another work highlight, Telpner led a team, including associate Mari Tomunen, which advised Gibraltar Stock Exchange on regulatory matters relating to the launch of the Gibraltar Blockchain Exchange, the first regulated and licensed token sale platform and digital asset exchange operated by an EU-regulated stock exchange. Other key names to note include head of emerging companies and venture capital practice Scott Kaufman who joined the practice from Wiggin and Dana LLP.

Media and entertainment: litigation

Index of tables

  1. Media and entertainment: litigation
  2. Leading lawyers
  3. Next Generation Partners
  4. Rising stars

Leading lawyers

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Rising stars

  1. 1
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Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP's media and entertainment litigation practice boasts an impressive breadth of experience ranging from handling contractual disputes and intellectual property issues to first amendment litigation and employment matters. The group is jointly led by Scott A. Edelman in Los Angeles and New York-based Orin Snyder who continue to defend AMC in profit participation cases. In another work highlight, a team led by Snyder is representing Facebook in all civil litigation arising out of reports of the alleged misuse of user data by Cambridge Analytica and related parties; this includes a securities class action, several shareholder derivative matters and consumer privacy actions. Theodore J. Boutrous Jr. is another key name to note in the Los Angeles office; he is representing Ashley Judd in defamation, sexual harassment and unfair competition claims against Harvey Weinstein, and is voluntarily acting for journalist Aaron Cantu following his arrest while covering the demonstrations at the 2017 presidential inauguration.

The Century City-based litigation practice at O'Melveny & Myers LLP¬†counts Global Music Rights, Lionsgate and Warner Bros among its clients.¬†Practice head¬†Daniel Petrocelli¬†led the defense of AT&T and Time Warner against allegations brought by the Department of Justice‚Äôs Antitrust Division that the companies' $85.4bn merger would harm competition. In the music industry, the group successfully represented Sirius XM Radio before the Florida Supreme Court, which confirmed that¬†pre-1972 recording owners cannot demand royalties for performance of their recordings during radio broadcast. The team is also acting for¬†The Walt Disney Company in several matters including in copyright litigation relating to The Last Days of Michael Jackson, and a dispute over the accounting of net profits concerning the 1989 movie Turner & Hooch.¬†Another client is Kesha¬†in ongoing defamation claims against her longtime producer Lukasz Gottwald. Other key names to note include¬†Molly Lens¬†‚ÄĒ who advised¬†Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation on several intellectual property and employment disputes¬†‚ÄĒ, Drew Breuder¬†and recently promoted partner Amy Lucas.

Marvin S. Putnam leads Latham & Watkins LLP's entertainment, sports and media litigation offering based in Century City. He and recently promoted partner Laura Washington are handling a range of matters stemming from Harvey Weinstein’s alleged sexual misconduct, including representing Miramax in several related class actions and defending ex-independent director of The Weinstein Company Holdings, Tim Sarnoff, in both the aforementioned class actions and several additional claims. Other clients include Ticketmaster, author Michael Pollan and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM); the team is advising the latter in a defamation dispute brought against President Donald Trump, including on media coverage and public interest issues relating to subpoenas for unaired The Apprentice footage, as well as assisting with internal investigations into allegations of misconduct on certain reality TV shows. Alongside Putnam, Jessica Stebbins Bina jointly leads a team including associate Robert Ellison, in the representation of MGM.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP's New York-based cross-departmental media and entertainment litigation practice group is jointly led by Bruce Rich and Benjamin Marks, who alongside Todd Larson successfully represented Pandora Media before the Court of Appeal for the D.C. Circuit, which upheld the favorable royalty rates set by the Copyright Royalty Board. Key matters in the television space include Yehudah Buchweitz's representation of Showtime Networks in a series of putative class actions relating to allegations of issues in connection with viewing the pay-per-view boxing match between boxing legend Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor, and the team's representation of A&E Television Networks in a dispute with The Weinstein Company (TWC) concerning A&E’s termination of certain agreements it had with TWC, including those relating to the TV series Project Runway and dozens of movies. The group is also acting for Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press, the Association of American Publishers and SAGE Publications in a copyright infringement dispute with Georgia State University regarding the parameters of the fair use doctrine in the academic setting. Sirius XM Radio, Facebook and Getty Images are also clients; a team successfully defended the latter in a copyright infringement action brought by Zuma Press.

The New York-based litigation team at Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP acts for media and entertainment sector clients such as HBO, Hearst Communications and Time Warner; it recently advised the latter on antitrust issues in connection with its $109 billion sale to AT&T in a matter led by a team including Peter Barbur. In another work highlight, the group is representing ABC and ESPN as intervenors in the high-profile NCAA grant-in-aid cap antitrust litigation, in which the broadcasters are opposing the release of confidential broadcast, media and sponsorship agreements. Karin DeMasi and Evan Chesler are acting for The Weinstein Company in a books and records demand suit brought by Harvey Weinstein; the team also represented the client in a breach of contract lawsuit at the New York Supreme Court brought by Speedee Distribution. The practice frequently handles employment and intellectual property litigation and benefits from the addition of Hon. Katherine Forrest from her role as a district judge for the Southern District of New York. J Wesley Earnhardt is another key name to note.

The content, media and entertainment practice at Jenner & Block LLP led by New York-based Andrew Bart boasts impressive litigation capabilities, particularly in intellectual property disputes. Recent work highlights include Bart's successful representation of EMI and EMI Music Publishing in a long-running copyright infringement claim against MP3tunes for the distribution of EMI’s copyrighted works without permission, and the defense of FanDuel, led by a team around Washington DC-based Kenneth Doroshow, in a class action relating to the use of athletes' names and game performance data to determine the outcomes of their fantasy sports contests. David Singer is a name to note for motion picture and television sector matters; he and antitrust and competition expert Richard Stone (both based in Los Angeles) successfully defended Twentieth Century Fox and other parties in a copyright infringement claim alleging that the movie Gone Girl infringed the plaintiff’s screenplay Out of the Blue. The group, which also includes Susan Kohlmann and Alison Stein in New York and Washington DC-based Steven Englund, counts Jay Z, The Walt Disney Company and Nintendo of America among its clients. Changes to the team include the departures of Jared Freedman and Daniel Rozansky to an in-house role at Recording Industry Association of America and Stubbs Alderton Markiles LLP respectively.

Clients consider the entertainment, sports and media litigation practice at Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP particularly 'wise about the peculiarities of the entertainment industry'. The 'results-driven' John Gatti, based in Los Angeles, attracts praise for his 'powerful knowledge' and jointly heads the team alongside 'consummate and pragmatic professional' Robert Jacobs in New York. In a current work highlight, Jacobs is defending Kendrick Lamar, UMG Recordings, SZA andTop Dawg Entertainment, among others, in litigation brought by painter Lina Iris Viktor alleging use of her art work without permission in Kendrick Lamar’s music video for All the Stars. The group is also acting for Tracy Chapman in a copyright infringement claim against Nikki Minaj. In the television space, Gatti is representing CBS Broadcasting in a contractual dispute regarding the distribution of the television series Walker, Texas Ranger for allegedly failing to account for subscription video-on-demand and streaming revenue. Based in New York, Prana Topper is another key name to note, particularly in the music industry. The department also benefits from 'knowledgeable' associates which 'make meaningful contributions', including Maura Gierl and Katrina Dela Cruz, both in Los Angeles.

The New York-based media and entertainment practice group at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP has particular experience handling breach of contract, antitrust, employment and intellectual property litigation for clients such as American Society of Composers, Authors & Publishers, Comcast Corporation and NBCUniversal. Recent work highlights include Jay Cohen's representation of Altice in litigation brought by Cablevision’s former controlling family and a Cablevision employee, alleging that Altice breached commitments it made when it acquired Cablevision (relating to the management of the staff and business of a local news program). The group is also acting for Tribune Media Company in several antitrust class actions alleging a price-fixing conspiracy in the market for television advertising sales. Lynn B. Bayard, who heads the team alongside Cohen, and Jonathan S. Kanter are other key names to note, particularly for intellectual property and antitrust matters respectively.

Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP's Century City-based media and entertainment sector group frequently handles a range of litigation including contractual, copyright and defamation disputes. Practice head Martin Katz is a key name to note, particularly for motion picture and television distribution rights, and James Curry has significant experience representing broadcast television networks . In a current work highlight, New York-based intellectual property expert Ted Max is acting for The Players Tribune in cross-border trade mark litigation in Australia against Sports Pty.

Natalie Spears heads the 'creative, cost-effective and efficient' Chicago-based technology media and telecommunications sector team at Dentons which counts MGM Studios and Yahoo! among its clients. The group is made up of 'strong advocates' and has particular experience handling consumer privacy class actions; it recently advised Condé Nast, Dow Jones and Trusted Media Brands on separate matters all relating to allegations of unsolicited junk mail and promotional phone calls. The practice also successfully represented Chicago Tribune before the Illinois Supreme Court in reversing a trial judge's order for all filings in the high-profile murder trial of former police officer Jason Van Dyke to be sealed. Samuel Fifer is another key name to note; he is acting for Drucker 1996 Literary Trust in intellectual property enforcement matters.

The media and entertainment group at Irell & Manella LLP frequently handles a range of intellectual property, defamation, privacy and contractual matters both in litigation and arbitration. The Los Angeles-based practice, led by Steven Marenberg, counts major studios and talent agencies including Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, United Talent Agency and Warner Bros Entertainment among its clients; the team represented the latter in a class action relating to the method in which Warner Bros (and other studios) accounted for home video royalties to profit participants over the course of several decades. Other recent work includes the defense of William Morris Endeavor in a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by the actor Terry Crews against the talent agency and its agent Adam Venit, and Victor Jih's representation of Hulu in litigation brought by the City of Creve Coeur against Hulu and Netflix relating to state taxation of online video streaming. Robert Schwartz joined Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP.

Williams & Connolly LLP's media and entertainment practice, co-headed by Thomas Hentoff and Kevin Baine, stands out for its capabilities in defamation and first amendment litigation. In recent highlights Baine led a team which successfully defended HBO and comedian John Oliver in a defamation suit brought by Murray Energy; Hentoff represented Warner Brothers Entertainment in a copyright infringement dispute, which confirmed that a foreign broadcaster that uploads copyright content to its website and makes it available in the US is in violation of the Copyright Act. The team is also acting for Bloomberg in litigation brought by Avery Stone alleging an article published about him and the failure of his Hong Kong business was defamatory. Other key names to note include Deneen Howell and Carl Metz for employment and antitrust matters respectively. All lawyers are based in Washington DC.

The 'very experienced and knowledgeable' media and entertainment litigation team at Katten 'takes pride in its work', such as recently successfully defending STX Entertainment in litigation brought by Sesame Workshop over the use of the tagline 'No Sesame. All Street.' in its promotional materials for the R-rated movie, The Happytime Murders. Zia Modabber is acting for The Estate of Michael Jackson in a putative class action alleging Michael Jackson was not the actual vocalist on three tracks from his first posthumous album. David Halberstadter, the 'patient and thorough' Joel Weiner and Gloria Franke Shaw, who attracts praise for 'exceptional litigation for copyright infringement cases', are key names to note. Shaw recently acted for Barstool Sports, a satirical sports and men’s lifestyle blog, in a defamation and false light claim brought by rap and hip-hop artist Andre Roxx after he was mistakenly identified in a news story. All attorneys mentioned are based in Los Angeles.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP's copyright, trademark, internet and advertising team, based in New York, frequently handles litigation for clients in the media and entertainment sector. Intellectual property litigation expert Dale Cendali is a key contact; she and Joshua Simmons recently led the successful representation of Take-Two Interactive Software in obtaining an injunction against the defendant who created software programs allowing players to create unauthorised features in Take-Two’s online video game Grand Theft Auto. In addition to the gaming industry, the group's experience spans across the music, theatre, film and television sectors; recent matters have included defending Sun TV Network in copyright litigation brought by Freeplay Music and advising Stage Entertainment in copyright infringement relating to the hit Broadway musical Anastasia. Claudia Ray and Johanna Schmitt are noted for their expertise.

The New York-based interdisciplinary media and entertainment litigation practice at Proskauer Rose LLP is particularly active in the music sector with clients including Lady Gaga, U2, Island Records, Ariana Grande and Universal Music Group. Practice head Sandra Crawshaw-Sparks and Alexander Kaplan represented Madonna, Warner Bros Records and WB Music Publishing in a copyright infringement claim brought by Pettibone. The team is also acting for Creative Artists Agency (CAA) in breach of contract, tortious interference with contract and unfair competition claims brought against United Talent Agency (UTA) and a group of defecting CAA talent agents; this matter includes arbitration proceedings against three former CAA agents, with related litigation against UTA and other CAA agents pending the outcome of arbitration. The practice also counts the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, Elsevier and Blackwell Fuller Music Publishing among its clients.

Pryor Cashman LLP's media and entertainment group is noted for its impressive music sector expertise. Acting for National Music Publishers’ Association and Nashville Songwriters Association International against streaming services Spotify, Amazon, Apple, Google and Pandora, the group achieved a decision from the Copyright Royalty Board for a substantial royalty rate increase. Donald Zakarin and Ilene Farkas are defending Ed Sheeran in a copyright claim alleging that his song Thinking Out Loud infringes Marvin Gaye's Let’s Get It On, and another work highlight is the representation of EMI Music Publishing in litigation brought by various entities affiliated with Frankie Valli and Bob Gaudio of the Four Seasons, which sought the termination a long-standing agreement with EMI UK. James Janowitz heads the practice which also includes head of intellectual property Brad Rose and Frank Scibilia. All mentioned attorneys are based in New York.

Litigation firm Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP counts a host of media and entertainment sector clients, such as Vimeo and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, among its impressive client roster and attracts praise for its 'combination of quality paperwork, personal style, strategic thinking, and cost-effective management of a litigation team'. The practice successfully represented Tsuburaya Productions Company in a dispute regarding the ownership of rights in Tsuburaya’s iconic 'Ultraman' superhero character. 'Brilliant strategist' Gary Gans and Jeffery McFarland are acting for Esplanade Productions in a copyright infringement, breach of implied contract, breach of confidence, and unfair competition claim against The Walt Disney Company relating to the film Zootopia. Washington DC-based William Burck and Robert Raskopf in New York are representing MLB players Ryan Zimmerman and Ryan Howard in defamation claims against Al Jazeera America relating to allegations of banned steroid use made in the documentary The Dark Side broadcast by the network . Managing partner John Quinn and Robert Schwartz, who recently joined the team from Irell & Manella LLP, are also key names to note. All mentioned lawyers are based in Los Angeles except where otherwise specified.

Media and entertainment: transactional

Index of tables

  1. Media and entertainment: transactional
  2. Leading lawyers
  3. Next Generation Partners

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1
Clifford Chance Ė Their Voices

The Century City-based entertainment, sports and media practice at Latham & Watkins LLP boast impressive experience in the sector with strong cross-border capabilities. In a recent work highlight, practice head Joseph A. Calabrese advised Hollywood Foreign Press Association on the negotiation of an agreement for the US broadcast rights to the Golden Globe Awards on traditional network television and various new media platforms. Alongside Robert D. Haymer he also acted for Skydance in connection with Tencent’s acquisition of a minority interest in the company. Nancy A. Bruington handles a range of financing transactions and assisted Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) with the refinancing of its existing revolving and term loan credit facility and execution of a new second lien term loan facility. The group also frequently advises Lions Gate Entertainment, Warner Bros. Entertainment and Netflix;  Kenneth T. Deutsch in Los Angeles led advice to the latter on the structuring and negotiation of co-production and distribution arrangements for the upcoming motion pictures Klaus and Over the Moon, which were co-produced with parties in Spain and China respectively. Changes to the team include Christopher Brearton's departure to an in-house role at MGM, and Justin Hamill's arrival in the New York office from Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP.

The 'sophisticated' practice at O'Melveny & Myers LLP 'adeptly services the overlap between pure media and entertainment, and corporate' and leverages 'a deep bench of industry knowledge' in 'navigating complex and unique issues in that space'. Matthew Erramouspe and Bruce Tobey jointly head the Century City-based team of 'smart, diligent and business-minded lawyers'; Erramouspe advised Alibaba Group in connection with its investment in media and entertainment start-up NewTV, and Tobey acted for Sony Music Entertainment in the negotiation of definitive agreements to indirectly acquire 49% of the 80% stake held by DHX Media in the iconic Peanuts brand, which includes such beloved characters as Charlie Brown, Peppermint Patty, Snoopy and Woodstock. In other recent work, the team advised Starz Play in relation to its establishment of a strategic alliance with E-Vision, and assisted Paramount with its agreement with Hasbro to produce and distribute content based on Hasbro brands, as well as original stories. Other key names to note include Silvia Vannini, who led a team which acted for independent film production company Good Universe in its sale to Lionsgate Entertainment, and 'proactive and communicative' M&A partner Sean Monroe.

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP's Los Angeles-based team is known for its financing expertise and frequent representation of investors and financiers of film, television and digital assets. The group is handling a range of financing transactions for East West Bank, including a $250m credit facility (co-led by East West Bank and JPMorgan Chase Bank) to Perfect Universe for the financing of a slate of Universal films; a $67m facility to Bona Film Group for its multi-tranche investment in a slate of films for 20th Century Fox; and a production loan for season 6 and 7 of the Netflix series Orange is the New Black. Practice chair Christopher Spicer led a team which acted for Bank of America in its $300m credit facility provided to Miramax for the financing of its current and future productions, including the latest installment of the Halloween franchise. In other work highlights, P. John Burke advised Lantern Entertainment on its $289m acquisition of the assets of The Weinstein Company out of bankruptcy, and Vanessa Roman led the advice to XYZ Films regarding its partnership with Jaunt, a producer and distributor of immersive content. Other key names to note include Marissa Román Griffith and the recently promoted Alissa Miller.

The broadcasting, media and entertainment practice at Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP handles a range of corporate and M&A transactions for its impressive client roster. In recent work highlights, the group acted for Time Warner in its $109bn sale to AT&T, and assisted The Walt Disney Company with its pending $85bn acquisition of Twenty-First Century Fox and in connection with 21st Century Fox’s pending $15bn sale of its 39% stake in Sky to Comcast. The firm also advised Charles M. Schulz Creative Associates on the $178m sale by DHX Media of a 49% stake in its interest in Peanuts Holdings to Sony Music Entertainment (Japan). A team led by George Schoen acted for Warner Media in connection with its investment in WndrCo. Faiza Saeed heads the practice which also includes Ting Chen. All attorneys are based in New York.

A stand-out firm for talent-side representation, Frankfurt Kurnit Klein & Selz PC's entertainment practice attracts praise for its 'unwavering commitment to clients and its ease in dealing with creative issues'. The group is particularly known for its representation of film, television, theater and music talent and celebrities, and counts actors Robert De Niro and John Goodman among its client. Richard Heller recently acted for Aaron Sorkin to negotiate and structure a deal for his adaptation of To Kill a Mockingbird for Broadway. Los Angeles-based Andrew Hurwitz advised Jennifer Lee in negotiations for her role as Creative Head of Walt Disney Animation Studios, and Victoria Cook successfully assisted comedians Desus Nice and The Kid Mero move the late night show Desus & Mero from Viceland to Showtime. Hayden Goldblatt, who has particular experience in the film sector, was recently promoted to the partnership. All lawyers mentioned are based in New York unless otherwise specified.

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Kevin Masuda heads the Los Angeles-based transactional media and entertainment practice at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP, which has capabilities in film finance, M&A transactions, and capital markets and private equity matters. The group has particular experience handling matters for innovative and start-up projects in the sector; it assisted WndrCo in the formation of and $1bn initial capital raise for NewTV and advised Ladder on its formation, licensing, commercial arrangements and capital raising transactions. Benyamin Ross and Ari Lanin acted for The Chernin Group in connection with its investment in and formation of Otter Media and Masuda led a team which acted for MGM Resorts International in its 50/50 joint venture with GVC Holdings PLC to create a leading US sports betting and interactive gaming platform. Ruth Fisher, who represented VidCon in its purchase by Viacom, is another key name to note.

Loeb & Loeb LLP's media and entertainment practice boasts experience which spans the motion picture, music, theater, reality television and emerging technology sectors. In recent work highlights, the team assisted Alcon Television Group with an agreement with Amazon to pick up the fourth season of The Expanse and advised Annapurna Pictures with the formation of its joint venture with MGM and a $350m senior secured revolving credit facility with JP Morgan Chase Bank. Los Angeles-based Scott Edel, who jointly heads the team alongside Roger Arar in New York, led the advice to Tencent Pictures regarding its agreements with Skydance Media, Paramount Pictures and Twentieth Century Fox in connection with the financing and distribution of The Terminator sequel. Key names to note include Ivy Kagan Biermaem in Los Angeles for employment work; New York-based Marc Chamlin, who counts Oprah Winfrey and actress Glenn Close among his clients; John Frankenheimer and Debra White, who are based in Los Angeles and New York respectively, for music industry transactions; and New York-based partners Carol Kaplan and Stefan Schick for theater work. Following several departures to Paul Hastings LLP, the team benefits from the arrivals of Paul Swanson in Los Angeles from Irell & Manella LLP, and three Chicago-based partners from Winston & Strawn LLP, including advertising experts Brian Heidelberger and Monique Bhargava, and data and privacy lawyer Robert Newman.

Lindsay Conner and Gary Gilbert, who specialize in the film, television and digital content and the music industry respectively, co-head the Los Angeles-based media and entertainment practice at Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP. Conner and Sophia Yen assisted Perfect World Pictures with a $250m ultimates-based loan facility with East West Bank and JP Morgan as a part of a $500m, 50-film co-finance agreement with Universal Pictures. The team also acted for Wells Fargo as a syndicate member of two significant credit facilities, including a $1bn credit facility to Legendary Pictures Funding. Charles Biederman, who is another key name for music industry matters, recently advised Alanis Morissette on a variety of contract negotiations, including for her new Broadway show Jagged Little Pill, a new book deal and touring agreements. Neil Sacker joined the practice from Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP.

The multi-disciplinary entertainment and digital media group at Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP boasts an impressive client roster which includes Amazon Studios, Paramount and The Walt Disney Company, among others. Robb Klein, Linda Michaelson and David Sands are key names to note for transactional work. In recent highlights, Klein advised Media Net Partners as the lead investor in a new film and television production and licensing company, Accelerated Global Content, and Michaelson acted for Lions Gate Entertainment in its acquisition of Good Universe Media. Robert Darwell frequently handles a range of matters in connection with motion picture and television production; he is instructed by Focus Features to assist with the production legal work relating to the Spike Lee movie, BlacKkKlansman. New York-based Daniel Schnapp drafted and negotiated an ASCAP multi-year license agreement with Facebook for the right to use ASCAP’s repertory of musical works in audio-visual content distributed on and through Facebook’s platform. Except where otherwise specified, all mentioned attorneys are based in Los Angeles.

The interdisciplinary media and entertainment team at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP counts DreamWorks Animation, VICE Media, 21st Century Fox and Endeavour among its clients. The group recently advised the latter on a joint venture with equity investor Sequoia Capital, Tencent and FountainVest Partners for the formation of a new China-based subsidiary; it also assisted Endeavor in connection with the merger of Learfield and IMG College, a subsidiary of Endeavor. In other work highlights, Robert Zochowski Jr. acted for Legendary Entertainment in its $1bn asset-backed term loan facility in connection with the refinancing of indebtedness, and a team represented Cumulus Media in its successful chapter 11 cases. Other key names to note include Robert Schumer and Ariel J. Deckelbaum. Justin Hamill joined Latham & Watkins LLP. All attorneys are based in New York.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP has experience handling prominent transactions in the media and entertainment sector. The team boasts impressive corporate, M&A and financing expertise; it assisted AMC Entertainment with its $600m million issuance of senior unsecured convertible notes to Silver Lake, and advised Getty Images on the acquisition by the Getty family of all of the equity interests in Getty Images held by The Carlyle Group. Howard Chatzinoff, who heads the practice alongside Michael Lubowitz, acted for independent music publisher Carlin America in relation to its $245m sale to Round Hill Music. Other key practitioners include Michael Aiello, who advised Scripps Networks Interactive on its $14.6bn merger with Discovery Communications. All attorneys listed are based in New York.

Arent Fox LLP boasts experience handling matters spanning the television, motion pictures and gaming sectors. Washington DC-based Anthony Lupo heads the practice and advised Discovery in relation to its $14.6bn acquisition of Scripps Networks Interactive. The team excels in intellectual property advice and acts for The Saul Zaentz Company in the management of its extensive trade mark portfolio, including all marks derived from JRR Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. Paul Fakler joined Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP in New York.

The New York-based media and entertainment practice at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP is jointly led by Jonathan Levitsky, Michael Gillespie and Michael Diz, and handles a range of corporate transactions. In recent work, Levitsky advised Discovery Communications on its $14.6bn acquisition of Scripps Networks Interactive, and assisted The Carlyle Group with its agreement to purchase Crestview Partners’ remaining shareholding in NEP. The group has also been active for financial advisers in significant transactions. Greater Media, Meredith Corporation and Tribune Media are all clients.

Attracting praise for its 'unflinching commitment to addressing client needs', Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP’s media, technology and commercial transactions practice has experience handling matters throughout the television, film, gaming, music and social media sectors. Matthew Syrkin, who 'goes out of his way to support his clients', chairs the media, technology and commercial transactions group. Other recommended lawyers include deputy head of the firm Kenneth Lefkowitz, and 'dedicated' associate Dena Smith, who brings 'great value' to transactions. In recent work highlights, the group advised John Varvatos Enterprises in connection with a multifaceted creative collaboration and sponsorship arrangement with singer Nick Jonas; assisted Bumble in launching the professional networking platform Bumble Bizz; and acted for Madison Square Garden Company in its acquisition of live entertainment technology and production company Obscura Digital.

Katten's Los Angeles-based practice has particular experience in the entertainment content space, and also handles a range of financing and merchandising transactions. Michael Hobel is advising HBO on a range of matters, including in relation to HBO's hit Game of Thrones series, licensing and production arrangements, and entertainment finance transactions. Other work highlights include acting for Media North America in connection with the revival of its successful television series American Idol, and advising Debmar-Mercury on the distribution of television series, such as BoJack Horseman and Schitt’s Creek. The group also acts for Paramount Pictures, Starz Media and Hulu, and assisted the latter in contractual negotiations, including those with Legendary for the series The Looming Tower. Susan Grode is another key name to note.

Proskauer Rose LLP fields an interdisciplinary team including corporate, private equity, intellectual property and sector experts in media and entertainment industry matters. Key names to note include Robert Freeman and Jeffrey Neuburger, who jointly head the TMT group; head of entertainment and copyright Sandra Crawshaw-Sparks; and corporate transactions partner Lauren Boglivi. Freeman and Boglivi lead advice to Discovery on several transactions, including recently on a strategic alliance with PGA Tour for global multi-platform live media rights outside of the US for all PGA Tour events; with its $120m sale of 90% of the ownership of its Discovery Education business to Francisco Partners; and with a $10m series A financing transaction for Here Be Dragons, a virtual reality production studio. The practice also acted for the founders of music streaming service Saavn in an agreement to combine Saavn’s services with over-the-top platform JioMusic. Hulu, Altice USA and Sony Music Entertainment are all clients. All attorneys are based in New York.

The media and entertainment practice at Reed Smith LLP fields a team of multidisciplinary lawyers and covers a range of transactions. In recent work highlights, the team has assisted financial institutions with film financing transactions, and has acted for clients, including authors and owners of literary rights, in negotiations for publishing agreements and film adaptations. Names to note include music industry specialist and practice head, Stephen Sessa; Michael Sherman, particularly for corporate and financing transactions; and James Sully. The team saw some changes with the arrival of counsel Moshe Kupietzky from Sidley Austin LLP and Leif Reinstein's departure to Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP. All lawyers are based in Century City.

The New York-based media and entertainment practice group at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP frequently handles high-profile transactions in the sector. Recent work highlights include acting for Twenty-First Century Fox in its $71.3bn acquisition by the Walt Disney Company and in an unsolicited $65bn acquisition proposal by Comcast Corporation; the team is also assisting the client with the US law aspects of its $20bn acquisition of the remaining stake in Sky plc that it does not already own, and subsequent disposition of its interest in Sky to Comcast for $15bn. It also advised Cineworld on its $5.9bn acquisition of Regal Entertainment Group. Practice head Howard Ellin acted for Telegram Group Inc. (British Virgin Islands) in connection with its $1.7bn ICO.


Index of tables

  1. Outsourcing
  2. Leading lawyers: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading lawyers
  4. Next Generation Partners
  5. Rising stars

Leading lawyers

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1
Clifford Chance Ė Their Voices

DLA Piper LLP (US) handles outsourcing arrangements in the software, insurance and media sectors and also assists governmental and public institutions with optimizing administrative operations. San Diego-based Gregory A. Manter advised Catalina Marketing Corporation on the outsourcing of its application development and maintenance services to Mindtree over a term of five years. The firm also advises the national police force of a Middle Eastern country in technological outsourcing negotiations. Other key individuals include Los Angeles-based practice head Vincent Sanchez, New Jersey-based associate Joanna Sykes-Saavedra and of counsel Anne Friedman, who also practices from the Los Angeles office. New York-based Praseeda Singh Nambiar joined as counsel in August 2018 from a consulting company.

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Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP has a particular emphasis on information technology and business process outsourcing, which often involve structuring complex supply chain arrangements. Daniel R. Mummery in Palo Alto, New York-based Stephen D. Nordahl and Los Angeles-based William J. Peters jointly head the Strategic Sourcing and Commercial Transactions practice. The practice group advised electricity supply company Southern California Edison Company on the negotiation of an agreement to outsource the development and maintenance of the client’s website, and also assisted Avon Products with the outsourcing of its global finance and accounting functions to the professional services company Genpact. In addition, the team advised Prudential Insurance Company of America on the outsourcing of administrative services for its defined benefits book of business to the technology and human resources services company Morneau Shepell Limited. New York-based Daniel Angel is also recommended.

Mayer Brown ‚Äėprovides the perspective and mentoring needed to be a successful and thriving business‚Äô.¬† Indeed, headed by Chicago-based¬†Brad L. Petersen, the team ‚Äėproactively guides its clients through the present issues, while still making sure that the long-run is secure‚Äô. The ‚Äėvery hard working‚Äô Washington DC-based David L. Beam and Chicago-based Elizabeth A. Raymond advise American Express on the outsourcing of its various assets of its alternative payments and prepaid business. Other key figures in Washington DC include¬†Daniel A. Masur¬†and¬†Linda L. Rhodes¬†(who is ‚Äėalways responsive‚Äô), while Chicago-based contacts include¬†Joe Pennell,¬†Rebecca S. Eisner and senior counsel¬†Paul J. N. Roy. Chicago-based Lei Shen was promoted to partner in January 2018, and¬†Michelle Ontiveros Gross, who is based in Palo Alto, joined from Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP in September 2018.

The ‚Äėvery professional and pragmatic‚Äô team at¬†McDermott Will & Emery LLP ‚Äėswiftly and professionally‚Äô handles outsourcing matters in the telecoms, healthcare and information technology industries. David Guedry, who divides his time between Dallas and Houston, advised the information technology services provider Unisys on a desktop service arrangement with what is now DXC Technologies. Dallas-based Heather S. Bethancourt advised Baptist Health of South Florida on the outsourcing of its revenue cycle management operations to Health Systems Solutions, a joint venture between the client and the management consultancy Navigant. The department is jointly headed by¬†Shawn C. Helms and Jason D. Krieser, who are both based in Dallas.

‚ÄėA¬†flexible team with great industry knowledge and a very commercial approach‚Äô, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP has particular expertise in the healthcare, software, financial services and insurance sectors. Washington DC-based practice head Aaron M. Oser is advising the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority on the outsourcing¬†to Transdev of its operations at the Cinder Bed Road bus maintenance facility. Washington DC-based¬†Mario F. Dottori and Vipul N. Nishawala, who is based in New York, advised NTT DATA on the sourcing aspects of the $3bn acquisition of Dell‚Äôs IT outsourcing business. Other names to note include San Francisco-based Patrick J. Devine, and Washington DC-based James L. Alberg, ‚Äėknowledgeable‚Äô counsel James W. McPhillips and counsel Meighan E. O‚ÄôReardon. New York-based¬†William Bandon left the practice in January 2019 to join a management consulting company.

Baker McKenzie LLP regularly advises clients on IT and business process outsourcing, systems, software and hardware procurement, and integration and maintenance agreements; it also has complementary expertise in the IP aspects of outsourcing transactions. Recent clients include Kellogg Company, McDonald’s and the telecoms software company Mavenir. In addition, the team has an enviable corporate client base spanning the healthcare, automotive, social media and hardware industries. The practice is headed in the Chicago office by Michael S. Mensik, and also includes Peter R. George and Samuel G. Kramer. Washington DC-based Sonia Baldia is another name to note.

Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP has experience in the negotiation and implementation of outsourcing agreements in the healthcare, telecoms, banking and retail sectors. Washington DC-based Cecilia Y. Oh is advising Baylor Scott & White Health on the outsourcing of its hospitality functions for its hospitals and health care clinics, while Richmond-based Jeffrey L. Harvey provides outsourcing and technology advice to the healthcare services provider Owens & Minor, which recently involved the negotiation of a telecoms support outsourcing services agreement and the management of cloud and on-premise hybrid solutions. Randall S. Parks heads the practice from the Richmond office, which also includes senior associate Sarah S. M. Carpenter.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP has expertise in the negotiation of intellectual property and technology-related outsourcing deals, and is regularly instructed by clients in the healthcare, software, fintech and chemicals sectors. The firm is advising Revlon on its negotiation of IT services, software and support agreements, which includes the negotiation of a cloud services agreement for the transfer of financial information. Other significant clients include the chemical company Tronox, Kellogg and General Growth Properties. Neil S. Hirshman and Gregg Kirchhoefer, who are both based in Chicago, jointly head the practice. Chicago-based Aaron H. Lorber and associate Todd Herst, also in Chicago, are other key contacts. Adam Petravicius joined the Chicago office from Jenner & Block LLP in January 2018, and Kate H. Withers joined in San Francisco from Fenwick & West LLP in September 2018.

Latham & Watkins LLP has been particularly active in the tourism, media, telecoms, banking and healthcare industries, where it is often involved in IT outsourcing arrangements and transactions that involve management and business administration processes. Key contacts in the practice group include Silicon Valley-based department head Anthony R. Klein, San Francisco-based JD Marple and Jeremiah M. Wolsk, who practices in the firm's Washington DC office. Highlights include advising Charles Schwab on agreements with Accenture in relation to BPO outsourcing projects. OpenTable, Clorox Company, PacifiCare Health Systems and Broadcast Music are also among the team's clients.

Loeb & Loeb LLP’s 'smart and accommodating' practice group handles outsourcing matters in various industry sectors, including the healthcare, education, retail and software sectors. New York-based practice head Kenneth A. Adler and Chicago-based Alison Pollock Schwartz advised Northwell Health on the renegotiation and restructuring of legacy IT outsourcing engagements, while New York-based Akiba Stern and Washington DC-based Neil Lefkowitz assisted Claremont Graduate University with an outsourced program management agreement with Noodle Partners, which aims to provide an online degree program in information security. Similarly, the team advised the education services provider Evidence in Motion on an outsourced program management agreement with Baylor University for a physical therapy education program. Also in 2018, the Chicago office welcomed Brian L. Heidelberger, Robert H. Newman and Monique N. Bhargava, all of whom joined from Winston & Strawn LLP. New York-based associate Benjamin B. Kabak is another name to note.

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP has wide-ranging outsourcing expertise, and has been especially active in the healthcare, consumer products, fintech, professional services and transportation industries. ‚ÄėExceptional‚Äô Philadelphia-based attorney¬†Barbara M. Melby¬†has ‚Äėthe ability to quickly grasp technical and commercial aspects of the deal and identify legal issues‚Äô; she jointly heads the practice with Michael L. Pillion, who is also based in Philadelphia. The team is advising Colgate-Palmolive on the structuring and negotiation of warehouse and logistics management transactions, which included a deal for the outsourcing of distribution operations to Mexico, as well as the outsourcing of the administration and management of the client‚Äôs contribution and health benefits plans. In addition, the practice group is representing Haemonetics Corporation in the negotiation of a $40m outsourcing agreement regarding certain IT functions and business processes. Philadelphia-based associate¬†Christopher C. Archer is another name to note. Senior attorney Ada Finkel left the Boston office to join a consultancy as assistant general counsel in January 2019.

WilmerHale provides ‚Äėfirst-class advice with swift turnarounds' and is also noted for its 'excellent attention to details‚Äô. New York-based practice head Robert M. Finkel ‚Äėbrings years of relevant transactional experience to bear, and has the ability to quickly propose workable comprises and creative solutions to difficult problems‚Äô. Of late, the team advised Barclays on an outsourcing transaction in connection with the establishment of a US credit card processing business. The firm also assisted Cincinnati Bell with the renegotiation of an outsourcing agreement with Accenture regarding the recent acquisition by the client of Hawaiian Telecom. Further, the team represented NatWest Markets in the negotiation and drafting of an outsourcing agreement with Tata Consultancy Services Limited regarding the outsourcing of the client‚Äôs core technology platform. Also recommended is¬†Michael J. Bevilacqua, who practices from the Boston office.

Atlanta-based Peter C. Quittmeyer and Washington DC-based Michael Steinig jointly head the department at Eversheds Sutherland, which regularly handles outsourcing matters for clients including governmental institutions, financial services providers, healthcare companies and chemical manufacturers. In the public sector, the team continues to advise the State of Georgia and its technology operations and management agency, Georgia Technology Authority, on the negotiation and structuring of outsourcing initiatives worth $250m, which involve the outsourcing of several data center projects. Atlanta-based Robert J. Pile is acting for PaySys, a subsidiary of the credit card processer First Data Corporation, in the structuring of its licensing model to reflect current industry trends involving enterprise licensees, financial services providers and outsourcing providers. The practice group is also advising healthcare company Medlytix LLP on outsourcing its service and distribution network and its compliance with healthcare privacy regulations.

Foley & Lardner LLP assists clients with the negotiation of outsourcing agreements and also handles the intellectual property aspects of outsourcing activities. Los Angeles-based James R. Kalyvas heads the practice and is experienced in advising IT companies on the drafting and negotiation of outsourcing contracts. Los Angeles-based Michael R. Overly is another key contact, as is Chicago-based Aaron K. Tantleff, who regularly advises media and telecoms companies on outsourcing matters. Chanley T. Howell is a key figure in the Jacksonville office, who acts for corporates in the internet, software and cybersecurity industries.

Hogan Lovells US LLP represents vendors and customers in outsourcing negotiations and also handles intellectual property matters associated with outsourcing activities. The team has offices from coast-to-coast, with key contacts including San Francisco-based John Brockland, Denver-based David L. London and Audrey Haroz Reed, who divides her time between Washington DC and New York. Zenas J. Choi and Michael E. Larner practice from the Northern Virginia office and are regularly instructed by clients in the automotive, telecoms, hospitality and banking sectors. Also of note, the firm recently advised a major movie theater chain on its outsourcing of administrative processes.

Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton acts for both customers and providers in outsourcing transactions and has recently been particularly active in supporting telecoms companies, information management providers, financial institutions and health insurance companies with their operational and administrative outsourcing measures. Headed by Dallas-based James D. Steinberg, the practice group also advises consumer retail and food companies as well as clients from the hospitality sector. In Atlanta, names to note include Joshua S. Ganz and counsel Farah F. Cook, the latter of whom joined the practice from Patrick Law Group. Jim Paine left for Holland & Knight LLP in March 2018.

Morrison & Foerster LLP is involved in the outsourcing of technology-based business operations for clients in the pharmaceuticals, healthcare, cybersecurity and insurance technology sectors. Vivian L. Hanson, who is based in New York, heads the practice and San Francisco-based Paul E. Jahn is also recommended. The firm saw a number of departures in 2018-2019: Christopher D. Ford left the Washington DC office for Ballard Spahr LLP in August 2018, New York-based John F. Delaney joined Perkins Coie LLP in January 2019, and Scott W. Stevenson, also in Washington DC, left for Culhane Meadows Haughian & Walsh PLLC.

The ‚Äėvery educated and cordial‚Äô team at¬†Proskauer Rose LLP has experience advising customers and vendors on evaluating, structuring, negotiating and managing outsourcing projects in sectors that include blockchain technology, healthcare, and media and entertainment. Recently, the practice group advised construction contractor Component Assembly Systems and C/F Data on various technology implementation, licensing and outsourcing agreements, and also handled technology-related outsourcing transactions for internet media company VerticalScope. The New York-based department is led by¬†Jeffrey D. Neuburger¬†(‚Äėan¬†extremely knowledgeable authority in the area of technology and media‚Äô), and also includes¬†Robert E. Freeman¬†and¬†Daryn A. Grossman. Senior counsel Paresh Triverdi¬†left the practice in July 2018 for an in-house position.

Leveraging ‚Äėgreat client management‚Äô and 'excellent analytical and communication skills', Venable LLP‚Äės ‚Äėdedicated team offers pragmatic and real life solutions to complex legal matters‚Äô. In particular, the practice group has considerable experience in the automotive, petrochemical, pharmaceuticals, retail and payment processing sectors. Washington DC-based Nora E. Garrote and¬†William T. Russell, who divides his time between New York and Washington DC, jointly manage the interdisciplinary technology transactions and outsourcing group.¬†The firm recently advised a car manufacturer on a variety of technological, operational and administrative outsourcing matters. Other names to note include Washington DC-based¬†Armand J. Zottola¬†and New York-based Eric A. Prager, who joined from K&L Gates in June 2018.

White & Case LLP ‚Äėquickly comes to terms with its clients' business-specific risks and concerns‚Äô stands out for its complementary skill sets in areas such as intellectual property, facility management and information technology outsourcing. The firm is especially active in the media, consumer technology, financial services and healthcare sectors, and also acts for major food producers such as Nestl√©. Working alongside¬†Jost Kotthoff ¬†in the firm's Frankfurt office, ‚Äėexceptional‚Äô New York-based attorney¬†Adam Chernichaw¬†is advising a financial services provider in developing and implementing an outsourcing plan. Other key individuals include Silicon Valley-based Daren Orzechowski, New York-based Arlene Hahn and Washington DC-based¬†Kevin Petrasic.

Wiggin and Dana LLP specializes in advising IT suppliers and business process outsourcing providers, which it often assists with the negotiation and documentation of offshore, nearshore and onshore outsourcing transactions. Mark W. Heaphy, who heads the practice from the New Haven office, regularly assists with outsourcing transactions in the healthcare, robotics, retail and financial services sectors. Other key contacts in New Haven include John B. Kennedy and counsel Michael T. Hubbard, while Sarvesh Mahajan and Tamia Simonis practice in New York and Stamford offices, respectively.

Arnold & Porter advises both suppliers and customers of outsourcing services in the information technology, infrastructure, software development and banking sectors. Core areas of expertise include the renegotiation of outsourcing relationships, structuring outsourcing agreements, liaising with offshore outsourcing providers and handling data privacy issues associated with outsourcing measures. Los Angeles-based senior counsel Matthew Maccoby and counsel Ira D. Moskatel jointly head the practice, which also include Jin-Suk Park in Washington DC, Silicon Valley-based Nicholas O’Keefe and Thomas A. Magnani, who practices in the firm's San Francisco office.

Ballard Spahr LLP has particular expertise in advising distressed corporates on strategic outsourcing matters in the context of corporate restructuring; it also has noted expertise in the renegotiation of outsourcing agreements. Key figures in the team include Washington DC-based Christopher D. Ford, who joined from Morrison & Foerster LLP, and counsel David H. Medlar, who joined the New York office from Morrison & Foerster LLP. The practice group is especially active in the logistics, payment processing and financial services industries. Recent highlights included the team representing an aviation company in negotiations regarding the outsourcing and standardization of its payment stream, and assisting a healthcare and pharmaceutical company with the restructuring of its global accounting outsourcing relationship.

Bracewell LLP has considerable experience of the drafting and negotiation of outsourcing agreements, and is most often instructed by clients in the energy, financial services, consumer products and retail sectors. A key figure in the team is Houston-based Jeffrey B. Andrews, who is assisting a food processing and commodities trading company with the structuring and negotiating an outsourcing agreement. Further, the practice group is acting for a fashion designer in the negotiating of an outsourcing agreement, and is also advising Oncor Electric Delivery Company on an agreement for the supply of certain goods and services. Other clients include Southwest Airlines, American Water Enterprises and Noble Energy.

Dentons advises customers and outsourcing service providers on management and human resources outsourcing, manufacturing outsourcing and IT outsourcing. The team has advised customers such as IBM, Hewlett-Packard, Oracle and SAP on the negotiation of outsourcing projects, and has also assisted BP Amoco with the outsourcing of its upstream oil and gas finance and accounting operations to PwC. Key contacts in the Chicago-based team include practice head Ross Docksey and Carol Anne Been. The firm also has experience of outsourcing disputes in connection with failed outsourcing contracts.

Jones Day has considerable experience of outsourcing matters for companies in the cybersecurity, digital marketing, artificial intelligence and automotive manufacturing sectors; the team also has significant clients in the aviation and retail industries. Highlights have included New York-based practice head Mauricio F. Paez has renegotiated a $450m IT outsourcing agreement on behalf of an energy company. Another key contact is Atlanta-based Todd S. McClelland, who is especially experienced in advising on outsourcing transactions in the infrastructure management, power distribution and transportation sectors.

K&L Gates has experience of technology, IT, software and human resources outsourcing transactions in several sectors including healthcare, transportation, consumer goods and financial services. In the Dallas office, John E. Howell heads the practice and Nigel R. Stark is also recommended. Past highlights have included advising a technology business and consulting company on the drafting and structuring of an outsourcing agreement regarding the administration of the employee benefits administration, and assisting a technology services provider with the outsourcing of its application development operations. Eric A. Prager, who is based in New York, left the practice in June 2018 to join Venable LLP.

Considered by clients as ‚Äėa¬†trusted partner that understands the client‚Äôs needs‚Äô,¬†Kelley Drye & Warren LLP¬†handles a wide range of software, intellectual property, management and technology outsourcing for clients including online retailers, artificial intelligence companies and healthcare groups. Of late, the outsourcing team advised Vertical Web Media, a provider of e-commerce intelligence, on the negotiation of technology licensing agreements. Other clients include the information services company Experian Information Solutions and the business consulting firms West Monroe Partners and Stout Risius Ross. Chicago-based W. Michael Ryan¬†(‚Äėvery knowledgeable in contractual matters‚Äô) and New York-based Deepak Nambiar jointly head the practice group. Chicago-based senior associate Marcella Hein left for an in-house role at an automotive company in March 2018.

McGuireWoods LLP handles the negotiation of outsourcing agreements, assists with data privacy aspects of outsourcing transactions and advises on information technology and business process outsourcing. Charlotte-based Rakesh Gopalan advised Top RX, a distributor of generic pharmaceuticals, on its engagements with cloud platform Evolve IP, which aims to revamp and outsource elements of the client’s technology assets to external data centers and eliminate technological redundancies. Contacts in the Chicago office include Derek A. Roach and Steve Gold, who acts as chair of the technology and outsourcing practice group.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP is instructed by customers and outsourcing services providers, which it advises on IT and administrative processes outsourcing. New York-based Stuart D. Levi heads the practice, which has advised S&P on the outsourcing of its IT, accounting and human resources operations. In addition, the firm advised American Express on the outsourcing of its printing processes, and also assisted Citigroup with the outsourcing of its application development and information technology operations.

Technology transactions

Index of tables

  1. Technology transactions
  2. Leading lawyers: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading lawyers
  4. Next Generation Partners
  5. Rising stars

Leading lawyers

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Rising stars

  1. 1
Clifford Chance Ė Their Voices

Cooley LLP advises online media and education start-ups, telecoms companies, fintech groups and software companies on M&A-related technology transactions, licensing deals and development agreements. Of recent note, T’Challa Jabari Graham, who joined the Palo Alto office from Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati in March 2018, advised Adaptive Insights on its $2bn acquisition by Workday. Washington DC-based Adam Ruttenberg renegotiated a strategic alliance between WeWork and client 2U, an online platform designed to offer higher education services. Denver-based practice head Keith J. Berets assisted telecoms provider Telestra with the spin-out of the video platform company Ooyala. Softbank, SeatGeek and online mobile lending service Welab Holdings are also among the team's clients. Adam Chase is another contact in the Washington DC office.

The ‚Äėvery capable, diligent, responsive and pro-active‚Äô team at¬†Fenwick & West LLP handles technology patent transactions as well as outsourcing and M&A-related technology licensing deals. Noted for its ‚Äėexcellent ability to digest technical and complex information‚Äô, the ‚Äėsolutions-oriented‚Äô practice group has an impressive client roster, which includes¬†blockchain developers, automotive companies, fintech groups and healthcare companies. San Francisco-based¬†Ralph Pais has ‚Äėyears of practical experience in making the impossible possible‚Äô; he recently represented the cloud financial management company Intacct Corporation in its acquisition by the business management software producer The Sage Group. Also in San Francisco, Stefano Quintini¬†advised the biotechnology start-up Invenra on its collaboration and license agreement with pharmaceuticals company Exelixis; practice head Jake Handy¬†(‚Äėexceptional, brilliant, creative and efficient‚Äô) assisted in that matter.¬†Vejay Lalla joined the New York office from Davis & Gilbert LLP in July 2018.

Goodwin handles M&A involving complex licensing, patent and software issues, and also has expertise in standalone commercial transactions including software leasing agreements and technology development contracts. Pre-empting a planned public offering, the firm advised software company Qualtrics on its $8bn acquisition by SAP. John J. Egan acted for internet software company AppNexus in the negotiation of an agreement to join AT&T‚Äôs advertising and analytics platform. Further, the firm advised software company Kensho Technologies on its sale to S&P Global for an aggregate purchase price of $550m.¬†Other key figures include joint practice heads¬†Kenneth J. Gordon and Silicon Valley-based¬†Anthony J. McCusker,¬†Stephen G. Charkoudian, and¬†Robert E. Bishop and¬†Robert G. Kester, who are rated for their ability to ‚Äėdrive a deal to a successful close‚Äô. Jon M. Novotny¬†and Joshua Cook joined the San Francisco office from Gunderson Dettmer LLP in October 2018, while Washington DC-based¬†Julie K. Tibbets joined from Alston & Bird LLP in February 2018. Named lawyers are based in Boston unless stated otherwise.

Hogan Lovells US LLP has extensive expertise in the negotiation and drafting of commercial contracts and technology licensing agreements in industry sectors including healthcare, software, media and fashion. The team has been assisting Regal Entertainment Group with the development and licensing of software and technology usage rights in connection with the IPO of an affiliated business partner. Northern Virginia-based Cullen G. Taylor has acted for Incyte Corporation in a licensing and collaboration agreement with MacroGenics in relation to the development and commercialization of an antibody. Other key individuals include San Francisco-based John Brockland, Washington DC-based communications practice head Michele C. Farquhar, and Meryl Rosen Bernstein and William J. Curtin III, who both divide their time between the New York and Washington DC offices.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP has expertise in IT outsourcing, technology licensing agreements and patent transactions in the context of M&A deals. Jointly headed by Neil Hirshman and Chicago-based Seth Traxler, the team advised The Boeing Company on a joint venture and IP licensing agreement with Safran for the design and manufacture of aircraft auxiliary power unit systems. Further, Vladimir Khodosh assisted Accenture Digital in the licensing of satellite imagery and an internet of things development platform. The department has also seen a number of new joiners in 2018-2019: Adam Petravicius joined the team from Jenner & Block LLP, Kate Withers joined from Fenwick & West LLP, and Shellie Freedman joined the New York office from Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP. Additionally, Matthew Colman was promoted to partner in October 2018. Edward Sadtler joined Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP in April 2019. Named lawyers are based in Chicago unless stated otherwise.

Latham & Watkins LLP is well known for handling commercial technology and IP licensing transactions in industry sectors including financial services, retail and telecoms. Recently promoted partner Ghaith Mahmoud, who is based in Los Angeles, has been advising Tencent Holdings on contractual risks involved with certain IP licensing and software distribution arrangements. San Francisco-based J.D. Marple represented the fintech company Digital Asset Holdings in contractual negotiations with the Australian Stock Exchange to replace the post-trade settlement system with a blockchain solution. The team is also acting for prominent grocery store operator Safeway in the sale of its Canadian division to the retailer Sobeys, which involves the negotiation of a transition services agreement pursuant to which the client will provide IT services to the purchasing party. Silicon Valley-based practice head Anthony R. Klein is also recommended.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP regularly handles technology and IP acquisitions and disposals, outsourcing transactions and licensing and development agreements. New York-based¬†Jeffrey Osterman¬†advised Sanofi on the technology and IP aspects of its $11.6bn acquisition of Bioverativ, a company involved in the treatment of blood disorders. Further, practice head Michael Epstein, also based in New York, advised The Campbell Soup Company on its $6.1bn acquisition of Snyder‚Äôs Lance ‚Äď a manufacturer and marketer of snack food products. Other M&A-related technology transactions included assisting the chemical distributor Nexeo Solutions with its $2bn sale to Univar, a distributor of specialty chemical products.

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Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati regularly assists software technology, life sciences and robotics companies with outsourcing, IP and technology transactions linked to M&A deals. Jointly headed by Washington DC-based James G. Clessuras and Ian Edvalson, who divides his time between Palo Alto and San Diego, the practice group has been advising app developers, wireless providers and component manufacturers of wearable devices on the drafting and negotiation of technology and trademark licensing agreements. Other contacts include New York-based Daniel C. Glazer and Miranda Biven, who divides time between San Diego and Palo Alto, and focuses on licensing arrangements in the life sciences sector. Further, Palo Alto-based John McGaraghan and Matthew Wiltermuth were promoted to partner in February 2018, while T’Challa Jabari Graham left the Palo Alto office for Cooley LLP in March 2018.

Baker Botts L.L.P. is instructed by clients from the automotive, telecoms and pharmaceutical industries, which it advises on joint venture and M&A-related technology transactions, development agreements and licensing contracts. Houston-based Felix Philips acted for AT&T in a $1.1bn agreement to sell its data center co-location operations and assets to Brookfield Infrastructure, and Dallas-based practice head Samantha Hale Crispin advised Toyota Motor North America on multiple joint venture agreements with Shell Oil Products and Kenworth to develop hydrogen fuel cell technologies. Other highlights include assisting long-standing client Cisco Systems with patent management and technology licensing agreements as well as with product development. San Francisco-based special counsel Tai Hsia joined the team in June 2018.

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP has extensive experience advising blockchain, media, biotech and software companies on matters including joint venture and M&A-driven technology licensing deals and development contracts involving cybersecurity and artificial intelligence. Faiza J. Saeed and practice co-head David J. Kappos, who are both based in New York, are advising The Walt Disney Company in connection with its pending $85bn acquisition of 21st Century Fox, which involves agreements for a multitude of copyright-based domain names and film production technology. Kappos also advised Biogen on its expansion of its existing agreement with pharmaceuticals company Eisai to jointly develop and commercialize certain Alzheimer’s disease treatments. Other New York contacts include Keith Hallam and practice co-head George F. Schoen, the latter of whom acted for Warner Media in its investment in NewTV as a part of its $1bn initial funding round. Allison M. Wein was promoted to partner in January 2019.

The team at Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP regularly advises on intellectual property, technology and outsourcing matters arising from licensing, collaboration and research development relations. Recent highlights included practice head Frank J. Azzopardi assisting The Ferrero Group with its $2.8bn acquisition of Nestlé US, which involved various agreements for trademark licensing and the use of shared production facilities, and Pritesh Shah acting for General Electric in relation to the $11.1bn merger of GE Transportation and the railway technology provider Wabtec Corporation. In addition, recently promoted partner David R. Bauer is acting for Forward Pharma in the negotiation and drafting of licensing and patent settlement agreements in connection with the restructuring of the client’s business. All named attorneys are based in New York.

The¬†‚Äėhighly skilled, incredibly competent and professional‚Äô practice group at DLA Piper LLP (US) is well known for its¬†‚Äėextensive global connections‚Äô and is rated by clients for its ‚Äėquick turnaround on complicated projects‚Äô. Palo Alto-based¬†Jeffrey Aronson¬†(‚Äėan¬†exceptional and knowledgeable transactional attorney‚Äô) assisted Silicon Laboratories with its $282m acquisition of the semiconductors company Sigma Designs. Further, Washington DC-based¬†Nancy Victory and Michael Senkowski¬†acted for T-Mobile US and Deutsche Telekom in FCC negotiations regarding the announced merger between T-Mobile and Sprint Corporation.¬†Silicon Valley-based global co-chair Victoria Lee is also recommended.

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP advises on the full range of commercial technology transactions and large corporate deals with significant technology components. In New York, Stephen D. Nordahl and practice co-head Daniel Angel acted for Johnson & Johnson in its $10bn sale and outsourcing of 60% of its manufacturing capabilities and facilities for implantable medical devices to the manufacturing services company Jabil. Further, Palo Alto-based co-head Shaalu Mehra has been advising Ford Motor Company on its $1bn collaboration with Argo concerning the development of autonomous vehicle technology. The team also assisted DR Horton, one of the largest home builders in the USA, with various software, cloud services and technology agreements. Also of note, practice co-head Carrie LeRoy joined the Palo Alto office in February 2018 from White & Case LLP.

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP has particular expertise in the business application of blockchain technology, and is also experienced in cybersecurity projects and data exchange platforms. Philadelphia-based practice heads Michael L. Pillion and Barbara M. Melby are acting for BOX Options Exchange in relation to a blockchain and surveillance technology license and services agreement as a basis for StokynX, a joint venture that will operate as a regulated exchange for the trading of security tokens. New York-based Vito Petretti and Doneld G. Shelkey in Boston advised Colgate-Palmolive on negotiations regarding a strategic sourcing and contract management platform, and also assists the client with the management of a portfolio of IT transactions. Philadelphia-based associate Christopher C. Archer is also recommended, and Jeffrey S. Dinerstein joined the Houston office from Jones Day in June 2018.

Morrison & Foerster LLP advises on the establishment of technology development joint ventures, technology and software licensing agreements and the outsourcing of technology-based business operations. Northern Virginia-based Thomas Knox has expertise in the cybersecurity, media and transportation sectors, and Vivian L. Hanson in New York is especially active in the areas of software and IT. Contacts in San Francisco include practice co-head Aaron P. Rubin, who regularly advises life sciences and healthcare companies, and Paul E. Jahn, who acted for Airmap, a provider of air traffic management systems for drone operations, in its transaction with the navigation systems operator Skyguide to enable the provision of air map services. Also recommended in San Francisco are William I. Schwartz and of counsel Scott Reynolds Carter. John F. Delaney left the New York team for Perkins Coie LLP in January 2019.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP advises corporates in the media, software development, telecoms and publishing industries on IP commercialization and M&A-related technology transactions. The team has advised Broadcom Corporation on the $147m sale of Ethernet controller-related assets and IP licenses to QLogic Corporation. Kenton J. King and practice head Leif B. King are key figures in the Palo Alto office. Also recommended is Washington DC-based Ivan A. Schlager, who heads the national security practice, and has been instructed by a number of prominent telecoms, cybersecurity and aviation companies.

The ‚Äėdedicated team‚Äô at¬†Venable LLP is noted for its¬†‚Äėexceptional service'¬†in high-value licensing and development agreements.¬†Recent highlights include acting for a hotel company in an agreement for the development of a central reservations system, and advising a payment processing company on an agreement for the integration of the client‚Äôs payment processing technology into third-party billing platforms. The practice group is jointly headed by¬†Armand J. Zottola and Nora E. Garrote¬†in Washington DC; another key contact,¬†William T. Russell, divides his time between Washington DC and New York and provides ongoing advice to General Electric on the structuring and negotiation of technology-driven deals in support of its energy and digital solutions businesses. New York-based Eric A. Prager joined from K&L Gates¬†in June 2018.

Jointly headed by Steven D. Barrett and Belinda M. Juran, WilmerHale advises on a wide range of technology development and licensing deals in the fintech, education, software and construction sectors. Michael J. Bevilacqua is assisting Commonwealth Fusions System with joining the MIT Energy Initiative, a university-industry partnership to develop high-temperature superconducting magnets for commercially viable fusion power plants. Further, Jeff P. Johnson advised Educational Testing Service on the IP and technology transfer aspects of its $1.1bn sale of test development and delivery provider Prometric to Baring Private Equity Asia. All named attorneys are based in Boston.

Baker McKenzie LLP handles telecoms contracts, outsourcing agreements and software licensing agreements for clients in the e-commerce, blockchain, IT and media industries. Practice co-head Michael S. Mensik acts for computer and telecoms companies in the development of joint ventures and outsourcing arrangements and Samuel G. Kramer has expertise in IT procurement and licensing contracts in the blockchain sector. Also recommended is Peter R. George, who has advised publishers on the transfer of test and production data from data centers to third-party providers of cloud services. A key contact in the Washington Dc office is Sonia Baldia, who focuses on technology development and licensing in the software and mobile commerce sectors. Named partners are based in Chicago unless otherwise noted.

Foley & Lardner LLP has experience of technology-related joint ventures, software licensing and the drafting and negotiation of technology transfer agreements. In Los Angeles, James R. Kalyvas heads the practice and advises IT companies on outsourcing contracts and licensing agreements, while Michael R. Overly has particular expertise and technology transfers in the automotive, healthcare, and e-commerce and payments technology sectors. Other key lawyers include Dallas-based Guy F. Birkenmeier, who specializes in the biotech-, healthcare- and pharmaceuticals-related deals, and Kay Schwartz, who has expertise in IP and is also based in Dallas.

Headed by Michael B. Woodard in Richmond, the team at McGuireWoods LLP has particular expertise in fintech and advanced software-related projects, where it advises across the gamut of IP and licensing arrangements. Other contacts in the department include Rakesh Gopalan in Charlotte, and Chicago-based Steve Gold, who has been advising energy service provider Direct Energy on a pilot project to utilize blockchain technology in an electricity procurement application. The practice group saw several personnel changes in 2018: Dallas-based Stuart M. Rasley joined the team from Squire Patton Boggs, Rebecca A. Brophy  joined the Raleigh office from Smith Anderson, and Chicago-based Gregory P. Hawver joined from Winston & Strawn LLP; in San Francisco, however, Lior O. Nuchi left for Norton Rose Fulbright, while Elliot Katz left to found an automotive company.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP has been especially active in the fintech, healthcare and automotive sectors, and recently advised Alta Motors on its collaboration with Harley-Davidson for the development and commercialization of electric motorcycle technology. The team is jointly headed by Glynna Christian in New York and Daniel Yost Silicon Valley. Also recommended is San Francisco-based Anik Guha, who advised the website and online publishing platform Verst on the acquisition of its staff by Dropbox. In 2018, Ellen Ehrenpreis joined the Silicon Valley office from Edgewood Law Partners, and Geoff Willard joined the team in Washington DC. Josh Pollick, who divides his time between Santa Monica and San Francisco, was promoted to partner in January 2018.

Paul Hastings LLP is regularly involved in technology transactions involving software, biotech and healthcare, and internet services. In New York, Samuel A. Waxman has advised Deerfield Innovations on the creation of Bluefield Innovations, a collaborative therapeutics partnership with Johns Hopkins University, with the aim to commercialize certain therapeutics research. Additionally, the team advised Phosplatin Therapeutics on a collaboration agreement with Pfizer and Merck for the evaluation of an oncology molecule in combination with an antibody. Other key partners include Los Angeles-based David M. Hernand, and Steven L. Camahort and Dana C. F. Kromm, both of whom are based in the San Francisco office. In Palo Alto, Tiffany Lee and Matthew D. Berger left the practice group in December 2018 and joined Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP.

Proskauer Rose LLP is well known for its extensive asset manager client base, which provides a steady stream of work in the retail, leisure and media industries. Jointly led by New York-based Jeffrey D. Neuburger and Robert E. Freeman, the team is advising Component Assembly and construction industry analytics provider C/F Data on technology licensing and outsourcing agreements, which recently included an investment in a blockchain-based construction company through a SAFE agreement. The firm also advised the internet media company VerticalScope on certain outsourcing, licensing and intellectual property agreements. Also recommended is Daryn A. Grossman, who is also based in New York. Paresh Trivedi left the practice in July 2018 for an in-house role.

Leveraging an enviable private equity client base,¬†Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP¬†‚Äėprovides extremely practical advice‚Äô on licensing, outsourcing and co-development arrangements in the media, banking and automotive sectors. New York-based practice head Lori E. Lesser ‚Äėrecognizes critical nuances‚Äô and is ‚Äėa true difference maker, who provides clients with a competitive advantage in any negotiation‚Äô; she advised Blackstone on a $20bn partnership agreement with Thomson Reuters for its Financial & Risk Business, which provides data analytics services for the client‚Äôs data and financial technology platform. Counsel Marcela Robledo, who is based in Palo Alto, assisted Alibaba with a strategic retail partnership agreement with Starbucks that involves the technological integration of several coffee delivery platforms into one single online store.

White & Case LLP handles technology licensing and development contracts for financial institutions, healthcare companies and IT companies, primarily in the context of joint venture arrangements and M&A. Silicon Valley-based Daren Orzechowski acted for Nestlé México in its acquisition of a majority in Terrafertil, a company selling organic food. Other significant client have included the Saudi Arabian Football Federation, the pharmaceutical company Roivant Sciences as well as prominent private equity firms including CVC Capital Partners. Arlene Hahn is also highly regarded. Howard Wettan joined the Silicon Valley office in June 2018, having previously served as the vice president of Visa; however, Palo Alto-based Carrie LeRoy left the firm for Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP. The global practice group is headed by Jost Kotthoff in Frankfurt, Germany.

Bracewell LLP handles the IP aspects of technology transactions, including high-value licensing deals, for clients including healthcare companies, insurers, retailers and financial institutions. Jointly headed by Dallas-based Janice Z. Davis and Houston-based Jeffrey B. Andrews, the practice group advised East Texas Medical Center Regional Healthcare System on its sale of certain assets to Ardent Health Services, which involved the transfer of technology contracts. The firm also assisted the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center with the negotiation of a sublicensing agreement with Intrexon Corporation and Ziopharm Oncology concerning IP emanating from the University of Minnesota for the development of non-viral adoptive cellular cancer therapies. Thomas W. Adkins, who is based in Austin, has been advising the online retailer on licensing arrangements for blockchain technology for its subsidiary Medici Ventures. Other clients have included Xiaomi Corporation, Cox Insurance Group and Natural Dental Implants.

The New York-based team at Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton is especially active in the healthcare, IT, banking and consumer products sectors, where it advises on technology licensing, IP agreements and large R&D projects. Joint practice heads Daniel Ilan and Leonard C. Jacoby advised Henkel on a $485m IP matter in connection with its acquisition of the hair professional business Zotos International. In addition, the team assisted American Express with the back-end and front-end technology aspects of its co-brand credit card partnership with Amazon. Other recent highlights included advising Google on a $1.1bn business corporation agreement with HTC, which included the acquisition of a license for HTC’s intellectual property; and assisting FIFA with the evaluation of the United States’ bid to host the 2026 Soccer World Cup, which involved various merchandizing, brand and copyright considerations.

Dentons handles a full range of commercial technology deals, from M&A-related transactions to standalone contracts such as development, licensing, outsourcing, and sales and distribution agreements. Joel N. Bock in Short Hills advised New York Power Authority on the negotiation of an agreement for an energy management platform to oversee and manage all governmental energy usage in the state of New York. Silicon Valley-based Robert F. Kramer advised Nistica, a supplier of optical modules for high-bandwidth applications, on a number of licensing and development agreements. The team is headed by Victor H. Boyajian in the New York office, where Brian Lee was recently promoted to partner. Los Angeles-based counsel Gregory R. Carney joined the firm from Morrison & Foerster LLP in August 2018.

Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP regularly handles IT-related transactions in the computing and software industries, and has recently advised on development joint ventures in the mobile and online payments arena. Richmond-based practice co-head Randall S. Parks advises medical device manufacturer Zimmer Bioment Holdings on software licensing and acquisition deals, and Washington DC-based Cecilia Y. Oh has assisted financial institutions with various technology agreements. Also in Washington DC, practice co-head Tyler Maddry has been instructed by IT, cloud and cybersecurity services providers.

Dallas-based Shawn C. Helms and Jason D. Krieser jointly head the team at McDermott Will & Emery LLP, which advises on outsourcing, licensing and cloud computing arrangements in the telecoms, IT, healthcare, social media and e-commerce sectors. Other contacts include David Guedry and Heather S. Bethancourt, also in Dallas, and Sarah T. Hogan, who practices in the firm's Boston office. Highlights have included advising Monsanto on an application development deal in connection with an IT outsourcing transaction, and acting for Baxalta in a research development collaboration with Precision BioSciences concerning the development and commercialization of a T-cell therapy. Other clients have included Motorola, Xerox Corporation and Finnair.

Ropes & Gray LLP is instructed by telecoms companies, financial institutions and private equity groups, a recent example of which included advising TPG Capital in its stock acquisition of internet operating systems provider Wind River Systems, involving the negotiation and drafting of IP transition services, licensing and collaboration agreements. In addition, the team acted for semiconductor manufacturer M/A-Com Technology Solutions Holding in a licensing and joint venture arrangement with STMicroelectronics for the development of certain telecoms technology. The practice group is jointly headed by Jane D. Goldstein, who divides her time between New York and Boston, Edward G. Black in Boston and Silicon Valley-based Andrew N. Thomases. Also recommended are Matthew Jacobson, who joined the team from King & Spalding LLP and divides his time between San Francisco and Silicon Valley, and recently promoted partner Regina Sam Penti, who divides time between Boston and London.

Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP was recently strengthened by the arrival of Daniel E. Schnapp in New York, who joined the practice from Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP and jointly heads the team alongside San Francisco-based Brian D. Anderson and San Diego-based Michael D. Orlando. In addition, Los Angeles-based Sidney S. Fohrman joined the practice group from Barnes & Thornburg LLP in March 2018. Of late, the team negotiated various agreements for Viacom in connection to the implementation of a consumer data platform, which was designed to collect, process and analyze consumer data across the Viacom media network. The firm also advised the nonprofit music company ASCAP on the drafting and negotiation of a licensing agreement with Facebook for the right to publicly perform the client’s repertory of musical work embodied in audio-visual content distributed through Facebook.

Telecoms and broadcast: regulatory

Index of tables

  1. Telecoms and broadcast: regulatory
  2. Leading lawyers: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading lawyers
  4. Next Generation Partners
  5. Rising stars

Leading lawyers

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Rising stars

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Clifford Chance Ė Their Voices

Attorneys named in this section are based in Washington DC unless otherwise indicated. DLA Piper LLP (US) has a strong track record of advising clients in cross-border matters and is recommended for its 'business-oriented approach', 'broad industry expertise', and the 'remarkable team of experts' it fields. CFIUS and Team Telecom specialist John Beahn handled national security issues for T-Mobile in its merger with Sprint, working alongside security specialist Sarah Kahn. Beahn was a new arrival to the practice from Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP in 2018. Practice co-heads Nancy Victory and Michael Senkowski also act for T-Mobile - and controlling shareholder Deutsche Telekom - in the regulatory aspects of its proposed merger with Sprint. Victory is lauded by clients for her 'high-quality strategic guidance', while 'stellar regulatory lawyer' Senkowski is also highly recommended. Wireless regulatory specialists Edward Smith and Eric DeSilva, who are 'stronger individuals in their own right than practice group leaders at other firms', according to one client, advise trade association CTIA, which represents all major wireless carriers, on the emergence of new technologies, particularly 5G and Internet of Things. New client Viziv Technologies has been a significant source of work for the firm, which has advised the wireless power company on obtaining regulatory approvals for the testing of its products. Other key names at the practice include associates Dana Zelman and Peter Shroyer, both of whom assist Beahn in his role as lead regulatory counsel to 21st Century Fox in connection with its merger with Disney.

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Boutique firm Harris, Wiltshire & Grannis LLP acts for clients on the full range of telecoms regulatory matters, with team leader John Nakahata noted for his experience in wireless and cable regulations. Nakahata, along with former FCC general counsel Christopher Wright, assisted litigation specialist and newly promoted partner Shiva Goel in the successful representation of the Crow Creek Sioux Tribe and Oceti Sakowin Tribal Utility Authority, which challenged the FCC's 2017 Lifeline order before the DC Circuit. Former FCC official Stephanie Weiner is notable for her work with internet clients, and recently argued on behalf of several industry associations and trade unions in their challenge to the FCC's Restoring Internet Freedom Order, also before the DC Circuit. The firm's founding partners are veterans in the telecoms space; William Wiltshire is noted for his strong record of strategic advice to large clients, Scott Blake Harris has high-level regulatory and public policy experience, and Mark Grannis focuses on trial and appellate litigation as well as providing regulatory compliance advice. Other key lawyers at the firm include Kristine Devine, who specializes in the regulatory aspects of communications transactions; undersea cable and cross-border regulation expert Kent Bressie; and spectrum policy specialist Paul Margie.

'There is no better firm', according to one client, than Hogan Lovells US LLP, which provides clients with a broad range of regulatory services, as well as counsel on high-profile telecoms litigation. The firm is distinguished by its ability to assemble and represent stakeholder coalitions in responding to developing issues, such as practice head Michele Farquhar's work for PTC-220, a consortium comprising leading rail companies and trade associations, which pertained to its implementation of new Positive Train Control safety systems and included spectrum buyout and swap arrangements, as well as substantial FCC representation in rulemaking and waiver proceedings. The firm also advises satellite television operator DISH Network on its proposal to deploy 5G services in the 12Ghz band, and its attempts to prove the viability of the proposal to the FCC. Wireless spectrum policy and 'telehealth' expert Trey Hanbury led the representation of DISH, and is also assisting T-Mobile in securing third-party support for its merger with Sprint, in one of the largest and most contested wireless transactions in recent years. Spectrum policy expert Ari Fitzgerald recently acted for SNR Wireless in negotiations concerning bidding credits from the FCC's 2015 AWS-3 auction, following a 2017 court victory establishing SNR's eligibility for the credits. Another key contact, privacy and communications law expert Mark Brennan, handles privacy and cybersecurity work for the Internet Association, a trade association with members including Google, Facebook and Amazon, in connection with the FCC's informational injuries workshop and the impact of GDPR on US-based internet companies.

At Jenner & Block LLP, noted for its experience in complex regulatory and litigation matters, universal service and disability access expert Rebekah Goodheart is acting for Sorenson Communications before the FCC in advocating for the reform of the FCC's provisions under the Americans With Disabilities Act, as well as advising CTIA in connection with the FCC's mobility fund phase II auction. Former FCC transaction counsel John Flynn chairs the group along with Samuel Feder, a former FCC general counsel who focuses on representing clients before federal regulatory bodies. Feder is assisting Charter in connection with regulatory proceedings concerning net neutrality, as well as in related litigation, while Flynn is advising wireless power company Ossia on obtaining the required FCC approvals for the sale of its product, assisted by special counsel David Didion, who provides clients with compliance and policy advice. Other key names in the practice include former FCC general counsel Howard Symons, a federal regulatory expert, and of counsel Roger Sherman, who focuses on wireless regulatory strategies and served as the FCC wireless bureau chief. A specialist in voice over internet protocol (VoIP) communication and new technologies, Luke Platzer continues to represent Charter Communications in the appeals process arising from its suit against the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission concerning the authority of state regulators over VoIP services.

Latham & Watkins LLP's full-service practice handles significant regulatory and transactional work for a roster of high-profile clients. Matthew Brill, 'one of the top lawyers in town', according to clients, recently secured a victory for Charter at the Second Circuit in a case concerning the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), and set a precedent relating to the definition of an automated telephone dialing system. Brill also acts for Charter in a lawsuit brought by the New York Attorney General's office regarding Time Warner Cable's alleged misrepresentation of the broadband speeds provided to customers, alongside the firm's white-collar crime team. The practice is led by direct broadcast satellite and emerging technologies specialist James Barker, along with Brill and New York-based transactional specialist James Gorton. Satellite expert John Janka is serving as lead counsel to ViaSat in a range of strategic and regulatory matters, including contested spectrum proceedings and non-geostationary orbit satellite network applications.  Barker recently led the regulatory team advising T-Mobile on its acquisition of Level 3 Communications, while Gorton headed the transactional team. Another key mandate for the firm has been its representation of the independent board of directors of T-Mobile in its merger with Sprint, working on transactional, regulatory and national security issues. Other notable names in the practice include Matthew Murchison, who has done 'great work on some complicated litigation' as well as providing regulatory counsel, and has significant experience in TCPA and broadcast licensing matters; and of counsel Elizabeth Park, who is experienced in both regulatory and transactional telecoms matters. Murchison recently represented Comcast and the West Virginia Cable Telecommunications Association in their challenge to state and local one-touch make-ready laws, along with Brill, and appellate specialist Melissa Arbus Sherry.

Wiley Rein LLP has a strong track record in all aspects of telecoms work, representing major clients in the wireless, cable, wireline, and satellite industries. Practice co-head Kathleen Kirby serves as regulatory counsel to Gray Television in all matters, including its $3.65bn acquisition of Raycom; she also represents Entravision in market modification proceedings at the FCC, and is retained as outside counsel by the National Association of Broadcasters. Fellow co-head Ambassador David Gross provides regulatory and strategic advice to the GSM association, in connection with spectrum decisions at the national and international level. Additionally, Gross assists Anna Gomez - who has significant experience in spectrum matters as well as jointly chairing the firm's unmanned aircraft systems practice - in her work for wireless industry trade association CTIA concerning US positions before the International Telecommunications Union and World Radiocommunication Conference. IoT and spectrum policy expert Scott Delacourt has a strong track record of work for clients working in the intelligent vehicle space, helping the Association of Global Automakers secure 75MHz of radio spectrum for auto safety services, and assisting General Motors' subsidiary GM Cruise Holdings in securing approval for its automated vehicle ride-sharing service. Shawn Chang, a former chief counsel in the US House of Representatives, advises TracFone Wireless on its opposition to FCC proposals concerning the elimination of wireless resellers from the Lifeline program and related lobbying efforts. Another key name in the practice is Christopher Huther, a wireline and wireless specialist with a particular focus on infrastructure deployment. Huther is assisting Verizon in connection with regulations governing its deployment of small-cell systems necessary for 5G signals, and is aiding AT&T in its attempts to reduce its pole attachment rental rates. Chairman emeritus Richard Wiley is a legend in the field, while potential future stars include Ari Meltzer and broadcast-focused associate Henry Gola.

Known for its 'substantial depth', the team at Wilkinson Barker Knauer LLP is described by clients as 'very knowledgeable on regulatory matters' and recommended for its 'proactive education' of clients. Wireless specialist Adam Krinsky, who provides 'exceptional judgment and expertise in wireless policy', recently assisted Verizon with the FCC approval for its $3.1bn acquisition of Straight Path Communications, including defending the company against a petition to block the deal. Litigator Russell Hanser is representing incumbent local exchange carriers CenturyLink and Citizens Telecommunications of Minnesota in appealing aspects of the FCC's 2017 regulatory decisions regarding business data services; he participated in oral argument at the Eighth Circuit in May 2018. Broadcast specialist Ken Satten handles the firm's work for Hubbard Radio, and is recommended for his 'exceptional client service', and of counsel David O’Connor, who assists Satten in Hubbard's matters, is a 'fantastic adviser' and 'very responsive', according to one client. 'Knowledgeable and skilful' managing partner Bryan Tramont provides Iridium Communications with strategic advice regarding Iridium's spectrum rights, in connection with authorization modifications requested by adjacent spectrum-holders. Additionally, Tramont is advising DISH Network on the construction obligations its subsidiaries face in connection with its AWS-3 spectrum holdings, alongside 2018 arrival and former FCC official Jennifer Tatel, former FCC commissioner and special counsel Kathleen Abernathy, and Christine Crowe, who specializes in spectrum matters and designated entity structures. Crowe, working alongside the wireless and infrastructure compliance-focused Craig Gilmore, acts for several clients in infrastructure siting proceedings at the FCC, as well as advising on compliance with tower siting rules at federal, state, tribal and local levels. Other key clients for the practice include trade associations CTIA and CTA, distributed antenna operator ExteNet, and GPS company Garmin.

The team at Arnold & Porter, noted for its work with public broadcasters, recently acted for an ad hoc group of lenders in connection with the bankruptcy and restructuring of radio broadcaster Cumulus Media, along with related foreign ownership proceedings at the FCC. Scott Feira led the firm's advice to Cumulus' creditors, recently advised two of Southern California's largest public television stations KCETLink and PBS-affiliated KOCE-TV in merging their operations, and is a key contact for work relating to licence transfers and state public utilities commissions. Practice head Maureen Jeffreys advised key client AT&T on the antitrust process relating to its $85.4bn merger with Time Warner, securing DOJ approval for the transaction in June 2018. Jeffreys specializes in antitrust and other transaction-related regulatory work for telecoms clients, and is also acting for AT&T in the FCC review process for T-Mobile's merger with Sprint. The firm was also retained by AT&T and Nokia Corporation to obtain FCC approval and regulatory waivers for the development of their smart grid solutions. Peter Schildkraut, who focuses on spectrum issues, open internet and compliance, is another name to note. William Cook recently retired.

Cooley LLP is particularly noted for its expertise in cable and broadcast matters, though it fields a team of experts across all areas of telecoms work.  Broadcast regulatory expert and senior counsel John Feore acts for both Fox's and CBS's affiliate associations, providing advice concerning the over-the-top content delivery market and related carriage issues. The team is lead by Michael Basile, who specializes in regulated transactions, and former FCC commissioner Robert McDowell. McDowell serves as regulatory and public affairs counsel for T-Mobile in its merger with Sprint, and also handles FCC regulatory and international spectrum work for Iridium Communications. Basile, working alongside Feore, is assisting Cox Media Group, ION Media Networks and other broadcast clients in the aftermath of the FCC's recent incentive auction, including repacking of channels, channel-sharing arrangements and post-auction transactions. Feore and McDowell provide counsel to several broadcast clients concerning the UHF discount and its implications on broadcast transactions, alongside special counsel Jason Rademacher, who specializes in FCC enforcement defense as well as advocacy in rulemaking proceedings. Other key lawyers in the practice include David Wittenstein, who focuses on broadcast issues including retransmission, program access and licensing issues, and special counsel Christy Burrow, who specializes in FCC auctions and spectrum issues.

Jones Day provides the full range of services to telecoms clients, but is best known for its work with clients in the satellite industry. Group Leader Bruce Olcott has extensive experience in spectrum work, and is assisting Boeing in its development of a global non-geostationary satellite communications network, including spectrum work before the International Telecommunications Union. Olcott also acted for Eutelsat in challenging FCC proposals regarding the re-purposing of C-band spectrum for terrestrial wireless use, and also handled Eutelsat's subsequent negotiations with other leading satellite operators connected to the FCC's proposal. Privacy and consumer protection specialist Michael Hazzard has a strong track record in work relating to cloud communications services, and defends CallFire in consumer protection cases, particularly those involving the TCPA. In another TCPA case, Hazzard is defending Twilio against two state-level class-action lawsuits in Nevada and Tennessee. Hazzard is assisted in litigation matters by associate Kaytlin Roholt, who specializes in cases involving the TCPA. Another key recent mandate for the firm is its work for creditors of iHeart Communications, in connection with iHeart's bankruptcy and subsequent transfer of ownership to its creditors.

The team at Kelley Drye & Warren LLP is noted for its strong practice in both regulatory and commercial matters, and is appreciated by clients for its 'pragmatic advice'. Spectrum expert Chip Yorkgitis is advising Aviation Spectrum Resources, which coordinates radiocommunication licensing for the aviation industry, in its opposition to FCC proposals made by Ligado, amid concerns Ligado's ancillary terrestrial components would possibly interfere with GPS signals. Defense contractor Raytheon is another prominent client of Yorkgitis', as is PT Telkom subsidiary Telin USA. Steve Augustino specializes in TCPA defense work, as well as Universal Service Fund contributions, and recently assisted AmeriFactors Financial Group in connection with its FCC petition concerning the classification of e-faxes under the TCPA. Augustino and special counsel Denise Smith are praised for their 'excellent counsel on difficult questions'. Smith specializes in wireline, wireless and cross-border work, and advises Telin USA on compliance with its national security agreement, alongside Yorkgitis. Telephone and broadband expert Tom Cohen acts for two major trade associations representing the fiber and cable industries respectively, in connection with various federal regulatory initiatives. John Heitmann heads the 'cost-effective' practice and successfully represented several clients, including Assist Wireless and the National Lifeline Association, in their appeal of the FCC's 2017 Lifeline order, which saw the order vacated by a DC Circuit decision in February 2019.

Kellogg, Hansen, Todd, Figel & Frederick, P.L.L.C. is best known for its work in trial and appellate litigation for household-name telecoms clients such as Verizon and AT&T. Appellate specialist Scott Angstreich is highly recommended, recently advocating for Verizon against Peerless Networks before the Seventh Circuit. Managing partner Michael Kellogg has significant experience in regulatory, antitrust and appellate issues, while civil litigation specialist Joshua Branson is notable for his experience in representing clients before the FCC. Wireline, broadcast and wireless litigation expert Evan Leo has experience working for market-leading providers such as Verizon, represents independent broadcast clients in program carriage disputes, and leads the firm's telecoms research group, producing industry fact reports. Other key individuals at the firm include former FCC general counsel Sean Lev, civil litigation specialist Brendan Crimmins, who has a track record of work for major telecom companies, and Aaron Panner, an antitrust specialist with a history of appellate court work for large telecoms clients.

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP is notable for its advice on wireline and fiber matters, as well as assisting foreign telecoms clients with national security issues. It earns praise for its 'deep industry experience, together with legal and regulatory expertise', while its 'enormous bench strength' allows it to provide a broad range of services. Practice head and veteran practitioner Andrew Lipman has particular experience in undersea cable work, and is considered both a 'brilliant legal tactician' and a 'savvy business and financial adviser', according to one client. Lipman leads the firm's advice to Hawaiki Cable on the construction of its trans-pacific cable and related regulatory approvals, along with Ulises Pin. Pin specializes in cross-border work , and has been handling telecoms infrastructure work for Facebook along with internet media and VoIP specialist William Wilhelm. Deputy practice head Catherine Wang 'provides creative and innovative legal and regulatory strategies', focusing on spectrum and wireless issues. Wang advised Cincinnati Bell on the regulatory aspects of its acquisition of Hawaiian Telecom, along with Lipman and Russell Blau, who specializes in telecoms litigation and regulatory policy. Other key team members include satellite and wireless specialist Timothy Bransford and Ronald Del Sesto, who is noted for his work on privacy matters and contract negotiation issues.

Paul Hastings LLP is noted for representing broadcasters in matters regarding new technologies, as well as matters requiring novel legal approaches. Department head Eric Greenberg is an experienced transactional lawyer, while Sherrese Smith is the key contact for clients requiring regulatory advice. Smith and Greenberg recently acted for ION Media with a series of innovative transactions arising from the FCC's incentive auction. Associate Andrew Erber is experienced in the regulatory aspects of broadcast transactions, and assisted Greenberg and Smith in their work for ION Media. Smith handles work for Cox Media regarding its expansion into new areas of content delivery - alongside cybersecurity expert Behnam Dayanim - as well as advising the National Association of Broadcasters on issues connected to the emergence and deployment of new broadcast technologies. Other key clients for the practice include 21st Century Fox, Nexstar Communications, and Univision Communications. Employment lawyer Carson Sullivan is also a member of the interdisciplinary group and defends AT&T in employment cases.

Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP is particularly strong in cross-border, CFIUS and national security work, with a client list that includes satellite operators such as OneWeb and Omnispace, and private equity clients such as I Squared Capital and Astra Capital Management. Team leader Brian Weimer focuses on satellite, wireless and broadcast companies, providing transactional and regulatory advice, as well as representation in FCC enforcement and national security proceedings. Weimer represents Korean satellite operator KTSAT in arbitration and litigation proceedings concerning satellite ownership and related damages, along with telecoms litigation specialist Paul Werner. Werner has experience in large-scale domestic consumer protection matters, with a particular emphasis on privacy matters, as well as arbitration and international disputes; he serves as regulatory counsel to social network and media company Snap. Weimer and Werner also advised NESS Technologies on a dispute with Chinese conglomerate HNA Group, raising novel issues concerning the CFIUS process, and on a purchase agreement for Ness' digital solutions business. Focusing on broadband, cable and wireless issues, Dave Thomas is the key contact for Charter Communications; he advises the client on wireless infrastructure deployment, cable operational issues, the FCC's one-touch infrastructure policies, and net neutrality. Other key team members include cable specialist Ray Rutngamlug and associate Drew Svor. Aaron George recently departed the firm for an in-house position.

Steptoe & Johnson LLP is noted for its work on high-profile regulatory matters, as well as for its ability to pull together interdisciplinary teams and its 'invaluable' policy awareness. A key recent mandate for the internet-focused firm was its representation of several clients in petitioning the FCC to reverse its Restoring Internet Freedom Order. 'Extremely savvy' practice head Markham Erickson and 'very responsive and organized' associate Georgios Leris represented lead petitioners Mozilla and INCOMPAS, while internet law and new technologies specialist Pantelis Michalopoulos, alongside associate Travis West, advised additional petitioners Etsy and the Coalition for Internet Openness. Michalopoulos is also assisting Dish Network with its opposition to the merger of Sprint and T-Mobile, and with its expansion into Cuba, and is assisting Iota in wireless licensing matters crucial to its Internet of Things services. Erickson works with key client Netflix on various regulatory matters, including representation before the FCC concerning regulations applied to over-the-top video services. Other key names in the practice include of counsel Christopher Bjornson, who advocates for clients before both national and international regulatory bodies, and former FCC general counsel Jonathan Sallet, who also brings to bear significant experience in antitrust and internet law.

Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP represents domestic and international clients on the full spectrum of regulatory issues. Group leader Thomas Jones is 'responsive, knowledgeable and a strategic thinker'; he specializes in FCC merger review and enforcement proceedings, and recently acted for Granite Telecommunications and Manhattan Telecommunications (d/b/a/ Metropolitan Telecommunications) in connection with USTelecom's petition for forbearance concerning the 1996 Telecommunications Act. Another prominent name in the practice is of counsel Mia Hayes, who has a particular focus on competition and FCC transaction review, and assisted Jones in his work for Granite and Manhattan. Michael Hurwitz has significant experience in FCC complaint and enforcement proceedings, and successfully defended key client Comcast in a program carriage dispute with beIN sports. Comcast also retains the firm on several other regulatory matters, with broadband deployment expert Daniel Alvarez handling work concerning the Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee, and cable specialist Jonathan Friedman assisting with various regulatory reform issues. Of counsel Renee Gregory is a key contact for spectrum work, and also has significant experience in wireless matters. Friedman and Gregory advise ARRIS Group on 3.5GHz spectrum proceedings and other mid-band issues.

The team at Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP 'has the ability to provide targeted, accurate advice quickly and efficiently on a variety of regulatory issues', according to one client. The firm is highly experienced in acting as communications regulatory counsel for creditors, underwriters and lead arrangers working in the telecoms space, and is retained by prominent financial clients including Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, and JP Morgan. Department head Chérie Kiser has advised groups of such clients on the financing of leading telecoms and broadcast companies, including Comcast, Charter Communications, and T-Mobile. Kiser is 'an extraordinary lawyer' and is recommended for her knowledge of 'all things related to telecoms law,' according to clients. Of counsel Angela Collins, who is notable for her work with Competitive Local Exchange Carriers and VoIP service providers, recently assisted key client Birch Communications - alongside Kiser - with regulatory matters connected to its merger with Fusion Telecommunications International and the resulting reorganization of the company. The team also represents Blackboard, a provider of communications systems to educational institutions, in connection with the FCC's recent proposals surrounding robocalls, particularly focusing on the issues surrounding reassigned numbers.

Dentons is noted for its international work, such as advising Nokia on regulatory matters relating to 5G deployment. A key recent mandate for the firm was its work for North American Portability Management, which it assisted in the process of transferring the role of local number portability administrator from Neustar to Telcordia Technologies (d/b/a/ iconetiv), including defending against various objections raised by the outgoing Neustar. Todd Daubert leads the group; he stands out for his engineering background and has a long history of regulatory and transactional work. Daubert also serves as regulatory counsel to Perform Investment d/b/a DAZN regarding its entry into the US internet broadcast market, and advises T-Mobile on FCC proceedings concerning interconnection agreement reform. Another key team member is managing associate Lauren Wilson, a former FCC legal adviser who has particular experience in matters involving robocalls, universal service funding, and broadband infrastructure. In addition, the firm advised NICOR Energy Services on customer calling regulations under the TCPA, handled Pure IP's entry into the US market, and serves as part of Nokia's global regulatory panel.

With significant across the telecoms space, boutique firm Lawler, Metzger, Keeney & Logan, LLC is a popular choice for clients dealing with FCC regulations. Managing partner Gregory Lawler, a former White House policy adviser and telecoms expert, is a key figure at the firm, as is Gina Keeney, a veteran practitioner with significant FCC experience. The firm's client list features household names in the wireless and cable spaces such as Sprint and Comcast, private equity clients such as Blackstone, and satellite clients such as low-earth orbit constellation operator Globalstar. Richard Metzger, who leads the telecoms group, focuses on regulatory and antitrust issues, and has significant expertise in wireline competition matters. Former FCC official Charles Logan has significant experience in mass media issues, but provides service across the wireline, wireless and broadcast spaces. Other names of note are Emily Daniels, an up-and-coming FCC advocacy specialist, and wireless and satellite focused Stephen Berman.

Mayer Brown is noted for its expertise in matters involving international regulations, as well as in satellite and wireless matters. Practice co-head Howard Waltzman has a particular focus on privacy issues, and advises wireless trade association CTIA in a variety of regulatory matters, particularly those relating to spectrum policy, wireless infrastructure and cybersecurity matters. Fellow co-head Angela Giancarlo is a former FCC official and has significant experience in the satellite, wireless, broadband and digital media spaces, as well as advocating for clients before international regulatory bodies such as the International Telecommunications Union. Chicago-based Mitchell Holzrichter is a key contact for clients seeking advice on the implications of new and proposed legislation, while Hans Germann, also based in Chicago, is a name to note in telecoms-related litigation.

Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C. is known for its cross-border work, as well as its focus on emerging technologies. Tara Corvo heads the group and is notable for her focus on the intersection of legislative and regulatory policies, as well as for work within the fields of broadband, cable and content provision. Corvo successfully represented cable operator Altice in a carriage dispute with Starz, and also acts as legislative and regulatory counsel for cable industry trade association NCTA. Spectrum expert Russell Fox recently assisted T-Mobile in connection with the FCC's regulations concerning commercial use of the 3.5GHz band, and also advises CTIA on legislation concerning 5G infrastructure. Of counsel Laura Stefani focuses on emerging wireless technologies and recently advised Sierra Nevada on the regulatory aspects of deploying its commercial radar product. Sallye Clark is noted for her experience in cross-border satellite matters, and recently handled spectrum work and International Telecommunication Union representation for satellite company AST&Science. Other notable team members include cable expert Seth Davidson, and cybersecurity expert Christopher Harvie, who  acts for Comcast in privacy matters.

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP is noted for its track record in signal carriage and program licensing work, as well as its work with clients offering over-the-top content delivery services. Practice co-head Scott Flick recently represented Shield Media in a dispute with Dish Networks regarding the payment of retransmission fees, assisted on the creation of private equity-backed broadcast company Standard Media, and serves as outside counsel to the National Alliance of State Broadcasters Associations. Fellow co-head Glenn Richards is noted for his long-term experience with VoIP clients, as well as his work for wireless resellers and financial investors entering the sector. Richards recently acted as regulatory counsel to GCTR in its sale of connected health company GreatCall to Best Buy. Sinclair Broadcasting is a marquee client for the firm, and is served by broadcast specialist Miles Mason in both general and transaction-specific regulatory capacities. Most notably, Mason handled the regulatory aspects of Sinclair's now-terminated acquisition of Tribune Media. Of counsel David Burns advised Cumulus Media on the FCC regulations concerning its Chapter 11 restructuring, and led the firm's advice to Entercom on the regulatory aspects of its acquisition of CBS Radio. Of counsel Lee Petro, a broadcast, wireless and telephone specialist, joined the firm from Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP in July 2018.

Squire Patton Boggs is praised by clients for its 'deep bench' as well as its regulatory experience and cross-border capabilities. Wireless spectrum expert Mark Dever advises Northstar wireless on its negotiations to secure bidding credits from the FCC, following on from litigation related to the AWS-3 auction.  Practice head Robert Kelly is notable for his ability to 'maximize efficiency and provide the greatest value to clients', as well as his strong track record with clients in the intelligent vehicles industry, representing the Intelligent Transportation Society of America before the FCC on regulatory matters, particularly regarding the proposals to allow unlicensed devices to operate in the 5.9GHz band. Eduardo Guzmán focuses on regulatory and dispute resolution work in Latin America, as well as practicing domestically. Guzmán handles various matters for key client Puerto Rico Telephone Company in the wake of infrastructure damage caused by Hurricane Maria, including disputes with PREPANet, a subsidiary of state energy company PREPA. Another key client for the firm is the 800MHz Transition Administrator, for which Kelly acts as general counsel in its reconfiguration of the 800MHz spectrum band. Other key names at the practice include Joseph Markoski, an 'excellent' specialist in mediation and alternative dispute resolution, and Robert Stup, who focuses on regulatory compliance, particularly concerning the Universal Service Fund and various spectrum issues; Stup is recommended by clients for his pragmatic advice.

At the boutique firm Telecommunications Law Professionals, which is known for its representation of smaller market players in bet-the-company situations, as well as its co-counsel work with firms that lack a specialist practice, founding partner Carl Northrop leads the group along with managing partner Michael Lazarus. Northrop successfully represented Skyriver Spectrum and Technology in a dispute with Verizon pertaining to a leasing agreement between the two parties, while Lazarus serves as federal regulatory counsel to Alaskan communications provider GCI on various spectrum issues and roaming agreements. Other notable practitioners include Ash Johnston, a wireless industry veteran who serves as the neutrality auditor for the local number portability management service, of counsel broadcast regulatory specialist John Griffith Johnson, and of counsel Helen Disenhaus, most notable for her work in the undersea cable and satellite industries, as well as new technologies and cross border work. Newly promoted partner Jessica Gyllstrom leads the firm's advice to Starry on state and federal regulations concerning its fixed wireless broadband service. Broadcast specialist Dennis Corbett is advising Northwest Broadcasting on regulation affecting its television properties, including retransmission consent and multiple ownership issues, and is also retained as regulatory counsel by Ramar Communications in connection with its television and radio portfolios.

Telecoms and broadcast: transactional

Index of tables

  1. Telecoms and broadcast: transactional
  2. Leading lawyers: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading lawyers
  4. Next Generation Partners
  5. Rising stars

Leading lawyers

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Clifford Chance Ė Their Voices

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP's New York-based team provides telecoms clients with high-value M&A and capital markets services, with a particular focus on transformative, large-scale acquisitions. The firm is experienced on both sides of the M&A table, acting as sell-side counsel in Time Warner's acquisition by AT&T, a market-shaping deal worth $109bn, and on the buy side on behalf of Disney regarding its pending $85bn acquisition of 21st Century Fox. Robert Townsend leads the group and specializes in complex M&A transactions, recently advising Cincinnati Bell on its $650m acquisition of Hawaiian Telecom. Faiza Saeed and George Schoen are key contacts for clients operating in the broadcasting and content delivery space; both advised on the Time Warner and Disney deals. Financing specialist Tatiana Lapushchik advised Citibank and JP Morgan in their provision of $10bn credit facilities to The Walt Disney Company. Capital markets expert William Fogg recently handled data center operator Cyrus One's $570m registered common stock offering, while Johnny Skumpija and Stephen Burns advised Crown Castle International on a $1bn debt offering and $831m stock offering.

Hogan Lovells US LLP's full-service, interdisciplinary practice stands out for its expertise in new technologies, particularly unmanned aircraft systems, Internet of Things, and healthtech. Washington DC-based communications practice head Michele Farquhar serves as lead counsel for the PTC-220 stakeholder coalition, a rail industry group implementing positive train control systems, which recently sought to purchase additional spectrum for its operations. DC-based Steven Kaufman and Northern Virginia-based Randy Segal lead the firm's space and satellite team, acting for clients including Planet Labs, which retains the firm in several transactional matters including launch service agreements and contracts. The team is also involved in big-ticket deals such as 21st Century Fox's merger with Disney, where it is one of Fox's regulatory counsels, and Sinclair Broadcasting's terminated deal with Tribune Media Group, where it operated as Fox's lead transactional counsel in the purchase of divested stations. New York-based M&A specialist Alexander Johnson is another key contact in the cross-practice team; he advised Anschutz Corporation on its sale of the majority shareholding of Regal Entertainment Group to Cineworld Group as part of a $5.9bn deal. Senior associates Sean Spivey and Arpan Sura are up-and-coming names within the firm.

Latham & Watkins LLP has significant experience in satellite, telecoms and broadcast transactions, for both financial clients investing in the space and established industry players. The firm recently advised CommScope on its $7.4bn acquisition of ARRIS International, as well as advising on related financing issues. Practice co-head Matthew Brill advises telecoms as well as private equity clients on their transactions, and recently assisted LogMeIn with its $350m acquisition of cloud-based communications provider Jive Communications. Fellow co-head James Barker handles spectrum work for clients, particularly concerning spectrum auctions and transactions, and recently acted for Blackrock Financial Management and ADK Capital Partners in connection with the FCC's AWS-3 spectrum auction. Barker and Brill are key contacts for the T-Mobile committee of independent directors, which they are advising in connection with T-Mobile's proposed merger with Sprint, in one of the wireless sector's largest recent transactions. Other recent highlights for the firm include work for Viasat in various spectrum proceedings, representing Hytera in its acquisition of Sepura and its US subsidiaries, and assisting JP Morgan in the debt financing of Sirius XM. Satellite and broadcast specialist John Janka serves as regulatory and transactional counsel for Viasat along with of counsel Elizabeth Park. All lawyers listed are based in Washington DC.

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP¬†provides the full spectrum of transaction services, but is notable for its work with large financial advisers on high-value transactions.¬†Jonathan Levitsky¬†works across both public and private M&A mandates, and recently handled work for Discovery Communications in connection with its $14.6bn acquisition of Scripps Networks, advised the Carlyle Group on acquiring Crestview Partner's shareholding in live broadcast company NEP, and advised Spruce House Investment Management on its $170m investment in GTT Communications. Levitsky, along with M&A specialist¬†Paul Bird, advised Tribune Media on its now-cancelled sale to Sinclair Broadcast Group, and currently advises on Tribune's pending $6.4bn sale to Nexstar Media Group, one of the largest upcoming deals in the broadcast market. Levitsky leads the group along with¬†Michael Gillespie¬†and¬†Michael Diz, both of whom specialize in telecoms and media transactions. Other prominent team members include¬†William Regner¬†and¬†Jeffrey Rosen, who¬†have a strong track record of work with large financial advisers, including clients such as Guggenheim Securities, Morgan Stanley, and JP Morgan Securities. Latin American media conglomerate¬†Globo Comunica√ß√£o e Participa√ß√Ķes, private equity firms Spruce House Investment Management, and broadcast company MSG networks are other notable names among the firm's client list.

DLA Piper LLP (US)'s team is, according to one client, 'the strongest transactional practice in the telecom space', and is highlighted for its work in wireless transactions. Nancy Victory, who jointly leads the group, is praised by clients as a 'relentless, organized and smart' dealmaker, and recently advised Verizon on its multi-step reorganization. Fellow co-head Michael Senkowski is 'extremely knowledgeable and experienced', and forms a 'stupendous' team with Victory that 'instills confidence and trust '. Senkowski and Victory are acting for T-Mobile in its proposed acquisition of Sprint, in one of the largest telecom transactions in recent years. The 'tireless' Edward Smith, who focuses on wireless and satellite matters, is assisting on the T-Mobile deal, as well as handling joint venture work for OneWeb in cooperation with Senkowski and the firm's engineering team. John Beahn, a 2018 arrival from Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, recently advised GTT Communications on its $40m acquisition of Access Point along with Reston-based transaction specialist Thomas Hendershot. In addition, Beahn is serving as lead regulatory counsel to 21st Century Fox in its $71bn acquisition by Disney, serving as national security counsel toT-Mobile in its acquisition of Sprint, and advising the Pennsylvania Broadband Investment Initiative Program on its investment in third-party broadband infrastructure deployment. The team is lauded for its 'strong bench', which includes wireless expert Eric DeSilva and associates Dana Zelman and Peter Shroyer. Lawyers are based in Washington DC unless otherwise indicated.

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP is known for its work with competitive and local telecoms providers on mid-market transactions, but also has a strong track record in large deals, such as Straight Path Communications' $3bn sale to Verizon. Andrew Lipman, a veteran in telecoms transactions and 'pre-eminent in the field', is most notable for his work with private equity firms and competitive carriers. Lipman advised Swedish private equity firm EQT on its $1.7bn acquisition of fiber company Lumos, as well as its acquisition of a majority stake in Spirit Communications. Russell Blau assisted Lipman in obtaining approvals for EQT's transactions, as well as handling GTT communications' $2.3bn acquisition of Interoute, along with Ulises Pin. Other key recent work highlights for the firm include its work on Impact Telecom's acquisition by Lingo Communications, on Cincinnati Bell's $650m acquisition of Hawaiian Telecom, and on FirstLight's acquisition by Antin Infrastructure Partners. Catherine Wang 'offers practical solutions' and is another key contact at the firm, specializing in complex regulated transactions as well as wireless and spectrum matters, and is recommended by clients for her 'great judgement and very sound advice'.

Paul Hastings LLP's 'top-notch transactional practice' is noted for its work in broadcast transactions, particularly those involving spectrum issues. Eric Greenberg heads the transactional group, and forms a 'great team' with regulatory key contact Sherrese Smith, both bringing 'strong skills' in their respective specialisms. The firm recently acted for FirstLight in connection with its the financing of its acquisition of fiber optic networks, with Greenberg working alongside associate and transaction specialist Andrew Erber. Other highlights for the firm included its representation of Hemisphere media in its joint ventures with Univision communications in the mainland and Puerto Rican markets, its advice to the Royal Bank of Canada on the financing of Standard Media's acquisition of a television station portfolio from Tribune media, as well as handling 21st Century Fox's proposed $1bn acquisition of television stations due to be spun off in Sinclair Broadcast Group's acquisition of Tribune Media, terminated along with the main deal. A key recent mandate for the firm was its work with ION media on the acquisition of expiring broadcast licences in the wake of the FCC's incentive auction, expanding ION's portfolio through a first-of-its-kind series of transactions.

Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP's New York-based team has significant experience in satellite, cable and wireless transactions, and is also known for its involvement in the communications tower space. Practice co-head and tower industry specialist Bruce Gutenplan recently advised John Hancock Life Insurance on its acquisition of a 35% stake in wireless tower operator Phoenix Tower International. Gutenplan also works with cloud services and data center companies, advising Quantum Strategic partners on the $442m sale of portfolio company Zenium Data Centers to CyrusOne, as well as the spinning off and subsequent $93m sale of the company's Turkish operations. Other key clients for the firm include CMMB vision holdings, ATC telecom, and LStar Capital. Patrick Campbell left for Milbank in 2019.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP's transaction team a notable track record of work for private equity clients, as well as on high-level public M&A. Private equity specialists Shayla Harlev and Brian Gingold, based in Boston and New York respectively, advised private equity firm Antin Infrastructure Partners on its $1bn acquisition of FirstLight Fiber from Oak Hill Capital Partners. Harlev also recently advised Berkshire Partners on the sale of its majority stake in Torres Unidas to Andean Tower Partners. Michael Aiello operates out of New York and has significant experience working with large financial advisers and asset managers; he is acting for JP Morgan Securities and Perella Weinberg Partners in connection with AT&T's Time Warner acquisition, and for Evercore partners in its financial advice to T-Mobile's committee of independent directors in connection with the proposed Sprint merger. Aiello also handles broadcast transactions, such as advising Scripps Networks on its $14.6bn merger with Discovery Communications. Another name to note is Frederick Green, who assisted Straight Path Communications in its $3.1bn sale to Verizon Communications. Transactional specialist Howard Chatzinoff leads the group alongside Michael Lubowitz, both of whom have long histories in market-shaping telecoms deals, across the wireline, wireless and broadcast spaces.

Headed by Chérie Kiser, the Washington DC-based team at Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP has a significant presence in telecoms transactions, and is best known for its work with financial clients operating in the space as underwriters, lead arrangers and deal managers. Kiser is advising various financing sources in connection with $38bn of debt financing provided to T-Mobile for its proposed merger with Sprint, as well as working with the initial purchasers in notes offerings by Charter Communications, Equinix, Netflix, and Iridium Communications. Birch Communications is another prominent name in the firm's client list, retaining the team in connection with its merger with Fusion Telecommunications International. As part of its work for Birch, the practice also handled Birch's internal reorganization, including the spinning-off of its consumer and single-line business services to form Lingo Communications, for which the firm continues to act. Of counsel Angela Collins is another key contact for telecoms matters and has particular experience working with competitive local exchange carriers and voice over internet protocol (VoIP) service providers. Kiser and Collins act as communications regulatory counsel for both Cable One, in connection with its pending acquisition of Clearwave Communications, and Lingo Communications, in its all-cash acquisition of Impact Telecom.

Cooley LLP is a strong choice for transactions which require FCC approval, particularly with former commissioner Robert McDowell among its ranks, and is distinguished by its prominent work in broadcast transactions. McDowell leads the group along with transaction specialist Michael Basile and broadcast regulatory expert John Feore. Basile advised long-term client Cordillera on the sale of most of its television businesses to Scripps, as well as the sale of its Tuscon operations to Quincy Media, for a combined $600m. McDowell has been retained by T-Mobile in connection with its proposed merger with Sprint, serving as regulatory and public affairs counsel. In cooperation with the firm's M&A and antitrust departments, Feore, Basile and McDowell are advising Gray Television on its $3.65bn acquisition of Raycom Media, one of the largest local broadcasting merges in recent years. A recent key area of work for the firm is broadcast transactions arising from the FCC's incentive auction, where the firm acts for several clients including Cox Media Group in post-auction transactions and channel-sharing arrangements. Kevin Mills is the name to note for telecoms and media clients seeking corporate advice, and recently handled Meredith's $2.8bn acquisition of Time along with Basile and members of the firms antitrust and debt finance practices.

At Jenner & Block LLP, Samuel Feder heads the firm's Washington DC-based practice, which is 'a contender with fresh ideas', noted for its strong track record as regulatory counsel in telecoms transactions, and 'should be on every general counsel's list' in bet-the-company matters. Feder advised SoftBank Group, the controlling shareholder of Sprint, in connection with the FCC approvals required for its merger with T-Mobile, along with John Flynn. Flynn is a former FCC commissioner with significant experience in wireless issues, and also acts for key client TENGA on transactional issues. Telecoms provider Altice recently retained the firm in connection with its reorganization, and its spin-off of Altice USA from its European operations. Rebekah Goodheart, who has worked at both the FCC and DOJ, is another key name at the practice, and has significant experience acting as antitrust and strategic counsel. Other key clients for the firm include Comcast, Armis and Windstream. Associate Elliot Tarloff has experience in transactional matters, including structuring and regulatory advocacy. Flynn and Feder, along with former FCC general counsel Howard Symons and wireless specialist Roger Sherman, are lauded by clients for their 'breadth and range of experience', that 'matches any other telecom firm in DC'.

Focusing heavily on telecom financing, as well as space and satellite work, the team at Milbank is also notable for its strong cross-border capabilities. The team is jointly led by space and satellite experts Dara Panahy and Peter Nesgos, based in Washington DC and New York respectively. Among recent work, the firm handles financing for WorldVu (d/b/a/ OneWeb), securing $2bn of equity investments along with $3bn of debt financing for the company's non-geostationary satellite constellation; advised Qatari satellite operator Es'hailSat on the full acquisition of a satellite previously operated as joint venture with Eutelsat; and advised Iridium on a $360m note issue. Indonesian satellite operator Pasifik Satelit Nusantara retained the firm in connection with $168m of project financing for its PSN VI satellite project, as well as negotiating procurement and launch agreements. In addition to its representation of satellite companies, the firm also acts for financial clients, and recently advised ING Group on the development of an industry-first financing arrangement for MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates, using future receivables from satellite sales as collateral. Following the publication of the guide, Patrick Campbell joined the firm from Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP. A significant hire for the team, Campbell has a wealth of experience across the telecoms space, working with wireline, wireless and satellite companies as well as private equity clients.

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Washington DC-based Ivan Schlager heads the team at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, which acts for clients in large-scale transactions across the telecoms, broadcast and satellite industries. The firm is serving as corporate counsel to 21st Century Fox in its acquisition by Disney, as well as the related spin-offs of its broadcast, sports and news businesses into Fox Corporation. The firm also advised Fox on the divestment of its $15bn stake in Sky to Comcast. Another key client for the firm is CommScope, for which it handles antitrust work in connection with CommScope's $7.4bn acquisition of Arris International.

Wiley Rein LLP is noted for its ability to secure approval for complex telecoms and broadcast transactions, and has experience in wireline, wireless, satellite and broadcast matters. The firm recently advised CNZ Communications on its $6m acquisition of KOFY-TV from Granite Communications, as well as its sale of $1.5m in assets to HC2. Kathleen Kirby has a strong tack record in complex transactions requiring regulatory approval; she led the firm's advice to CNZ on the above matter, and heads the team along with Ambassador David Gross. In the field of space and satellite work, Jennifer Hindin is a notable name; she is advising Intelsat on spectrum transaction proposals in the C-band. Broadcast transaction specialist Jessica Rosenthal serves as lead transactional counsel for Alpha Media's radio acquisitions and divestitures, as well as related financing, and recently advised Ironwood Communications on the sale of two television stations for a combined $6m. The firm is also active in the broadcast tower space, with Rosenthal advising Vertical Bridge on several tower acquisitions. The firm also serves as regulatory counsel in iHeartMedia's Chapter 11 restructuring, securing the necessary FCC approvals for iHeart's emergence from bankruptcy.

Washington DC-based former engineer Todd Daubert leads Dentons' practice, which specializes in cross-border work and emerging technologies. The firm has a strong track record on behalf of early-stage companies, with Short Hills-based venture capital specialist John Cleary advising cloud video distribution service Zype on its Series A-3 financing, and fellow Short Hills-based operator Jeffrey Baumel advising Saphyre on a convertible note financing. Michael Cochran, who works out of the firm's Atlanta office, represents key client and venture capital firm Next Frontier Capital in several recent transactions, including equity investments in TwinThread, meateater, and Ataata, and the debt financing of Alpin. At the firm's New York office, private equity specialists Paul Gajer and Kate Buckley are advising Spire Capital on its investment in cloud service provider Dynamic Quest, while cross-border transaction specialists Kristina Beirne and Anthony Carroll advised Toppan Vintage on its multi-jurisdictional carve-out acquisition of Merrill's transaction and compliance businesses. Other key clients for the firm include KKR, Nokia and NextNav, as well as North American Portability Management.

Proskauer Rose LLP is highly experienced in broadcast matters, particularly those involving internet broadcasting and content delivery, as well as distribution agreements and issues concerning new broadcast technologies. Robert Freeman heads the practice along with Jeffrey Neuburger, while Lauren Boglivi is the key contact for private equity clients. Freeman and Boglivi recently advised Discovery Inc on its strategic alliance with the PGA tour, concerning the development of a worldwide over-the-top broadcast service, as well as its joint venture with The Enthusiast Network. Other notable matters Freeman has led for the team include negotiating rights and broadcast deals for the Fan Controlled Football League, the renewal of Cox Communication's distribution agreements with Turner Networks, and Major League Soccer streaming deals with Twitter and YouTube. M&A specialist Andrew Kleiman recently advised streaming service Saavn in its combination with over-the-top platform JioMusic. Other notable names in the practice include Frank Saviano, a sports law expert who advises on distribution agreements, and associate Krista Whitaker.

Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP has strong experience in satellite matters, as well as advising a range of private equity clients in their telecoms investments. Practice head Brian Weimer focuses on satellite, wireless and media companies, recently handling Astra Capital Management's acquisition of Alpheus, a Texas-based competitive local exchange carrier, for $205m.  Weimer also recently acted for I Squared Capital in connection with its $1.9bn acquisition of Hutchison Telecom's fixed-line service, and assisted Global Eagle with satellite capacity purchases. Other key team members include Ray Rutngamlug, who specializes in communications service agreements, and associate Drew Svor. The firm's work with Ness Technologies is one of its most notable engagements, having represented the company in the proposed $325m cross-border sale of its digital solutions business to China-based HNA Group, as well as in litigation arising out of the subsequent failure of the transaction due to national security issues. While Weimer handled the corporate and national security issues in Ness' case, Paul Werner handled the litigation issues, and leads the firm's advice to social network Snap, which includes transactional and strategic matters concerning its move into mass media content.

Boutique firm Telecommunications Law Professionals fields a team with strong expertise in obtaining transaction approval, spectrum matters and representing smaller companies in connection with acquisitions by large incumbent providers. Team leader Carl Northrop has a strong track record of telecoms work,  and recently assisted C Spire with its FCC petition for the imposition of conditions on T-Mobile's acquisition of Sprint, in addition to handling the regulatory aspects of Skyriver Spectrum and Technology's sale of its communications businesses. Other names to note in the practice include managing partner Michael Lazarus, who advises the Competitive Carriers Association in connection with ongoing spectrum and transaction issues in the wireless broadband space, newly promoted partner Jessica Gyllstrom, and veteran practitioner Dennis Corbett, a broadcast specialist. Corbett and Gyllstrom act for Northwest Broadcasting in a range of matters, including retransmission fees and multiple ownership issues, while Corbett also acts in a similar capacity for Ramar Communications.

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