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Colin Howes

Work 020 7667 5000
Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Work Department

Corporate and commercial group


Co-head of company commercial group; provides strategic and corporate advice primarily for clients in the media/entertainment, aviation and leisure industries.

Recent deals includes investments in No.1 Lounges and Bounce, the sale of medical technology specialist The Learning Clinic to System C and investments in several independent TV production companies, including Kindle Productions (by Lionsgate), Amazing Productions (by BBC Worldwide), Blink Productions (by Tin Roof Media), Emporium (by Hat Trick), Dancing Ledge (by Fremantle Media) and Caravan Media (by All3Media).


  • Articled, Harbottle & Lewis; qualified 1981; partner 1984; managing partner 1992-2000
  • Trustee of Comic Relief since 1984




  • Ipswich School
  • Oriel College, Oxford (1978 MA English)


  • Theatre
  • Cinema
  • Music

London: Corporate and commercial

M&A: smaller deals up to £50m

Within: M&A: smaller deals up to £50m

Harbottle & Lewis LLP acts for a number of owned-managed businesses, including high-profile companies such as Skype and Virgin Atlantic, in the technology, media, communications, entertainment, leisure and aviation industries, among others. Colin Howes and Tim Parker lead the practice; Parker recently advised longstanding client Victoria Beckham Limited on a £30m investment into the company from private equity firm NEO Investment Partners. Other highlights included Mark Phillips acting for international performance marketing agency Forward Dimension Capital on its acquisition by The Stagwell Group; Rhys Llewellyn advising the shareholders of Make It Cheaper Group, a business price comparison service, on an investment in the company made by private equity firm ECI Partners; Tony Littner assisting social intelligence company Runtime Collective with its acquisition of BuzzSumo; and Charles Lévêque advising the shareholders of language services provider Translate Plus on the sale of the company to Prodigious. Atomico Investments, Forward Internet Group, ISAM and Bounce Ping Pong are also clients.

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London: Private client

Charities and not-for-profit

Within: Charities and not-for-profit

Harbottle & Lewis LLP¬†provides advice that is ‚Äėconsidered, thorough and appropriate at all times‚Äô. Clients appreciate that Colin Howes‚Äô ‚Äėinput is always excellent. His advice draws on his knowledge of and expertise at dealing with the Charity Commission‚Äô. Clients are ‚Äėparticularly impressed by his ability to bring a complex negotiation to a speedy conclusion without exerting undue pressure‚Äô. Howes is a long standing member of Comic Relief and the team continues to advise the charity on various matters encompassing charity law alongside broader issues relating to reputation management, fundraising and other issues such as data protection. Howes is also a board adviser to Virgin Unite (which is the Virgin Group‚Äôs charitable foundation). The team continues to advise corporate foundations, media-related fundraising charities and subsidised arts organisations as well as a number of new and innovative charities. David Scott¬†advises some very high profile charities on all charity law issues in addition to advising high-net-worth individuals on their personal philanthropy.

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Legal Developments by:
Harbottle & Lewis LLP

  • Account of profits v damages: when and why does it matter?

    Since 2007, Experience Hendrix LLC(Hendrix) and Times Newspapers Ltd (Times) have been litigating over the intellectual property rights (IPR) in a recording of a Jimi Hendrix concert that took place at the Royal Albert Hall in February 1969. In September 2006 Times distributed a free CD, or covermount, with each edition of The Sunday Times . A claim was issued against Times in March 2007 for infringement of copyright and performers’ rights under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. In March 2008 the High Court held that Times had infringed the IPR in the recording and Hendrix elected to have an inquiry as to damages in respect of that infringement. The case has given rise to some complex issues as to the basis for the quantification of damages, and the inquiry is due to be heard next year, but the case is also a reminder of more general considerations in relation to remedies in IPR cases, and why the basis for quantification of those remedies can have far reaching consequences for a successful claimant.

    - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

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