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Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

EXCHANGE HOUSE, PRIMROSE STREET, LONDON, EC2A 2EG, ENGLAND
Tel:
Work 020 7374 8000
Fax:
Fax 020 7374 0888
DX:
28 LONDON CHANCERY LANE WC2
Web:
www.herbertsmithfreehills.com/contact-us
Abu Dhabi, Bangkok, Beijing, Belfast, Berlin, Brisbane and 21 more

Top-tier Firm rankings

Firm Rankings


London: Corporate and commercial

Commercial contracts
Commercial contracts - ranked: tier 3

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s multi-disciplinary team ‘operates to a high standard’ in large-scale, cross-border and business-critical matters. Global TMT head Nick Elverston and senior associate Hayley Brady are advising Google on legal and commercial issues concerning its expansion into new products. Nick Pantlin heads the commercial, outsourcing and IT practice for the UK and Europe.

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Corporate tax
Corporate tax - ranked: tier 3

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s recent highlights span real estate, where it assisted private equity fund manager Benson Elliot on the acquisition of a property portfolio; oil and gas, where it advised Antin Infrastructure Partners on its purchase of a 36.2% stake in a North Sea gas pipeline; and IT, which included acting for Atlassion Corporation on its $4.4bn Nasdaq IPO. Global tax head Isaac Zailer, William Arrenberg (whose broad expertise includes cross-border tax planning and structuring), Howard Murray and newly promoted partner Aurell Taussig are all recommended.

Leading individuals

Howard Murray - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Isaac Zailer - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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EU and competition
EU and competition - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

James Quinney heads the team at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, where Veronica Roberts acted for Telefónica on the merger control aspects of its attempted sale of O2 to Hutchison Whampoa, and Stephen Wisking assisted Sky during the EC’s investigation into cross-border premium pay-TV content licensing. Other clients include Pilkington, Reckitt Benckiser and Virgin Atlantic Airways. The ‘very engaging’ Susan Black has ‘a good business focus’, is ‘technically excellent and extremely good at risk assessment’.

Leading individuals

James Quinney - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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EU and competition: Trade, WTO, anti-dumping and customs
Other recommended firms - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Equity capital markets
Equity capital markets - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s team advises issuers and underwriters on high-profile issuances, and combines this transactional expertise with particularly noteworthy regulatory capabilities. Practice head Charles Howarth led the advice to Lonmin on its $400m rights issue. On the US securities side, Stephen Thierbach and Chris Haynes left for Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP, while Tom O’Neill arrived from King & Spalding International LLP and Dinesh Banani was promoted to partner.

Leading individuals

Charles Howarth - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Financial services
Financial services (contentious) - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Financial services (non-contentious/regulatory) - ranked: tier 3

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s contentious and non-contentious team provides ‘business-focussed advice’ across a range of issues affecting retail and investment banking clients such as Lloyds, UBS and Credit Suisse. With support from the firm’s employment team, Andrew Procter has led the advice to eight banks, including TSB and Westpac, on major implementation projects concerning the new Senior Managers Regime. In another highlight, Jenny Stainsby, the ‘highly technical’ Hywel Jenkins and Daniel Hudson worked alongside the competition team in advising a leading global investment bank and an international financing group on the global reviews into alleged manipulation in the FX market. Since his arrival in May 2015 from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, Nick Bradbury has been involved in a range of wholesale and retail financial services work, including providing regulatory advice on TSB’s spin out from the Lloyds Banking Group. Clive Cunningham is also recommended.

Leading individuals

Clive Cunningham - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Investment funds
Investment funds: Hedge funds - ranked: tier 3

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Listed funds - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Private funds - ranked: tier 4

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Real estate funds - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Although Herbert Smith Freehills LLP is historically known for its market-leading listed funds capabilities, its funds practice covers matters involving alternative funds strategies, including: private equity buyout, hedge, real estate and infrastructure. In 2015, Tim West was lead adviser to HarbourVest on its migration from the Specialist Fund Market to the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange. Nigel Farr and Scott Cochrane jointly lead the practice with West. Recently promoted partner Stephen Newby is also recommended.

Leading individuals

Nigel Farr - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP (Private funds)

Tim West - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP (Listed funds, Private funds)

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M&A: mid-market, £50m-£250m
Leading individuals

Gavin Davies - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

James Palmer - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Stephen Wilkinson - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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M&A: smaller deals, up to £50m
Leading individuals

Gavin Davies - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

James Palmer - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Stephen Wilkinson - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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M&A: upper mid-market and premium deals, £250m+
M&A: upper mid-market and premium deals, £250m+ - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Stephen Wilkinson and Ben Ward head the ‘practical, reliable, conscientious and respectful’ team at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, in which the ‘fantastic, totally client-focused’ Mike Flockhart is especially recommended for takeovers. He and Greg Mulley advised Polyus Gold International on a $9bn hostile takeover offer by Sacturino. Gavin Davies is also recommended, Mark Geday and Tomasz Wo´zniak returned from international secondment in the autumn of 2015, and Caroline Rae made partner in May 2016. Chris Haynes moved to Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP.

Leading individuals

Gavin Davies - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

James Palmer - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Stephen Wilkinson - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Partnership
Partnership - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

The ‘highly knowledgeable, responsive and user-friendly’ Alan Watts leads the partnership disputes team at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, while Malcom Lombers (who has ‘what clients look for – in-depth knowledge combined with a commercial approach’) handles a broad range of non-contentious matters, often with an international element. Combined they provide ‘an outstanding service’ to clients such as KPMG International, Anchorage Capital Group and Man Group.

Leading individuals

Alan Watts - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Malcolm Lombers - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Private equity: transactions
Private equity: transactions – Large-cap deal capability - ranked: tier 4

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Private equity: transactions – Mid-cap deal capability - ranked: tier 3

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP undertakes UK and cross-border transactions across a wide range of sectors, including: infrastructure and energy, real estate and TMT. In 2015, Mark Bardell and newly promoted partner John Taylor acted for EPIC in the $1bn sale of Moto to USS. In another highlight, Ben Ward and Taylor worked with a cross-border team to handle Photobox’s sale to Exponent and Electra. Mark Geday and Tomasz Wozniak relocated to the London office from Moscow. Geday took over as practice head from James Macarthur, who joined Weil, Gotshal & Manges.

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VAT and indirect tax
VAT and indirect tax - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP combines transactional expertise with an extensive track record on contentious matters. Heather Gething is representing Telefónica Europe in its judicial review of HMRC’s change in assessing tax linked to roaming charges. The practice also handles regulatory issues such as VAT rules on pensions investment services. William Arrenberg is a key contact in this regard.

Leading individuals

Neil Warriner - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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London: Crime, fraud and licensing

Corporate crime (including fraud, bribery and corruption)
Corporate crime (including fraud, bribery and corruption) - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s ‘thoughtful and effective’ team is regularly involved in some of the highest-profile corporate crime investigations. Rod Fletcher led a team in a landmark case that resulted in the UK’s first Deferred Prosecution Agreement. Susannah Cogman is also highly recommended.

Leading individuals

Rod Fletcher - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Susannah Cogman - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Fraud: civil
Fraud: civil - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

From partner to associate level’, the team at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP provides ‘spot-on advice’ with a ‘thoughtful and personable’ demeanour. The practice is led by Jeremy Garson and Philip Carrington. Robert Hunter left to join Edmonds Marshall McMahon.

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Fraud: white-collar crime
Leading individuals

Rod Fletcher - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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London: Dispute resolution

Banking litigation: investment and retail
Banking litigation: investment and retail - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP remains a real force for banking litigation. The team advised Lloyds Banking Group (and five of its former directors) in a shareholder action. Key individuals include Damien Byrne Hill, who is ‘an extremely savvy litigator’; the ‘cool-headed’ Rupert Lewis; Chris Bushell, who is ‘top-class’; and Natasha Johnson, who is ‘charming but tough’. Simon Clarke, Adam Johnson and John Whiteoak are also highly respected advisers. The ‘very bright’ Harry Edwards was promoted to partner. Tim Parkes joined the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Payment Systems Regulator.

Leading individuals

Damien Byrne Hill - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Rupert Lewis - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Simon Clarke - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Commercial litigation
Commercial litigation - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s ‘team is effective and personable, and the advice is spot-on’. It successfully defended Bernie Ecclestone against a $145m claim brought by a German media company. Key names include Alan Watts, who is ‘a shrewd operator’; John Ogilvie, who ‘offers valuable strategic insight’; Damien Byrne Hill (‘an extremely safe pair of hands’); James Baily (‘a standout player’); Chris Bushell (‘never lets clients down’); and Rupert Lewis. Mark Shillito, Philip Carrington, Simon Clarke and Adam Johnson are also highly rated. Former team head Tim Parkes joined the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Payment Systems Regulator.

Leading individuals

Alan Watts - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Damien Byrne Hill - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Philip Carrington - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Competition litigation
Competition litigation - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s team of ‘smooth and aggressive operators’ is noted for providing ‘a Rolls-Royce service’ to clients. Practice co-head Stephen Wisking led the team acting for Sky in numerous Ofcom investigations and before the Competition Appeals Tribunal, including the client’s appeal to Ofcom’s 2010 decision forcing it to provide its sports channels to rivals on contractual terms set by Ofcom. In another key matter, Wisking and the ‘very smart and capable’ Kim Dietzel led the team defending Pilkington in follow-on damages claims in the UK and Germany arising from the EC’s car glass and flat glass cartel investigations. Matthew Weiniger QC joined Linklaters LLP.

Leading individuals

Stephen Wisking - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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International arbitration
International arbitration - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s Chris Parker and Dominic Roughton returned to London from New York and Tokyo, respectively, while Christian Leathley relocated to New York and Matthew Weiniger QC joined Linklaters LLP. The ‘detail-oriented and strategic’ practice advised Vedanta Resources in its BIT claim against the Government of India. Clients praise Paula Hodges QC, who is ‘a comforting presence’, the ‘client-friendly’ Craig Tevendale, and Nicholas Peacock, for his ‘mastery of the facts’.

Leading individuals

Paula Hodges QC - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Professional discipline
Professional discipline - ranked: tier 3

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP acts for The Financial Reporting Council and the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants and also for individuals and companies. Practice head Andrew Lidbetter provides advice that is ‘client focused and easy to understand’. The ‘excellent’ Nusrat Zar is also recommended.

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Public international law
Public international law - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Changes to Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s team included the departure of Matthew Weiniger QC to Linklaters LLP and Dominic Roughton’s relocation to London from the Tokyo office. Key work included representing the Republic of Costa Rica in an arbitration against investors claiming that the state expropriated their investment. Andrew Cannon and Christian Leathley relocated to the Paris and New York offices, respectively.

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Reputation management
Reputation management - ranked: tier 4

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

The ‘excellent’ team at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP successfully defended Primark against libel claims brought by a former supplier. The ‘very experienced’ Alan Watts, who heads the firm’s commercial litigation practice, is recommended.

Leading individuals

Alan Watts - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Tax litigation and investigations
Tax litigation and investigations - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP has wide-ranging expertise, making it a go-to choice for tax investigations and litigation of all stripes. Practice head Heather Gething and senior associate Nick Clayton (who are ‘knowledgeable, responsive and easy to work with’) are representing Bernard Ecclestone in High Court claims challenging HMRC’s rescission of a 2008 settlement agreement. Bank of Ireland and G4S Cash Solutions are also clients.

Leading individuals

Heather Gething - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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London: Finance

Acquisition finance
Acquisition finance - ranked: tier 4

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Leveraging its strong corporate client base as well as a growing roster of private equity clients, Herbert Smith Freehills LLP is ‘well attuned to market trends’, particularly in the infrastructure and energy sectors. The ‘impressive’ Heather Culshaw recently advised Antin Infrastructure Partners on the financing of BP’s acquisition of a stake in the Central Area Transmission System gas pipeline in the North Sea. Other recommended partners include the ‘excellent’ Kristen Roberts and Will Nevin.

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Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans
Bank lending – investment grade debt and syndicated loans - ranked: tier 3

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s ‘commercial’ team provides ‘a world-class service’ to borrowers including EasyJet, Royal Mail and Stagecoach. Kristen Roberts recently advised Capita plc on a £600m revolving facility. In an illustration of the team’s energy sector strength and reserve-based lending prowess, Thomas Bethel recently advised a group of 23 international lenders on a $4.3bn financing facility to refinance Lundin Petroleum’s existing reserve-based lending facility. The ‘authoritative yet easy-going’ Ewen Fergusson and the ‘approachable and commercial’ Malcolm Hitching are also recommended.

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Corporate restructuring and insolvency
Corporate restructuring and insolvency - ranked: tier 3

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

The ‘high-quality team’ at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP attracts praise for its ‘ability to manoeuvre around difficult and conflicting stakeholders’, and for its ‘excellent oil and gas sector expertise’. The group is traditionally best known for its debtor-side practice and has picked up numerous mandates in the mining sector; highlights included advising Lonmin plc on the refinancing and restructuring of a $360m English law facility agreement and ZAR2bn South African law facilities. The ‘superb’ Laurence Elliott leads the team, which includes Kevin Pullen, who continues to act in the long-running Nortel bankruptcy.

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Debt capital markets
Debt capital markets - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

A very good DCM house with strong market experience’, Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s team is noted for its ‘willingness to push boundaries’. Key figures include the ‘approachable, pragmatic, commercial’ Amy Geddes and head of DCM Andrew Roberts, who are ‘focused, proactive and knowledgeable’. Roberts advised the lead managers on Republic of Namibia’s $750m bond, and Geddes acted for easyJet on a £3bn EMTN programme. Tom O’Neill joined from King & Spalding International LLP and leads on US securities. Steve Thierbach joined Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP.

Leading individuals

Amy Geddes - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Andrew Roberts - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Derivatives and structured products
Derivatives and structured products - ranked: tier 3

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP is ‘fantastic to work with, extremely helpful and proactive’. The ‘very impressive’ Dina Albagli advised an international financial institution on currency hedging for a highly structured guarantee arrangement. Structured products specialist Jake Jackaman acted for BlueBay Asset Management on its €450m corporate credit programme. ‘Extremely knowledgeable’ senior associate Nick May is a rising star.

Leading individuals

Dina Albagli - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Emerging markets
Emerging markets - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP is ‘excellent across the board in the energy space and can adjust to the dynamics of different jurisdictions’. Africa practice head Martin Kavanagh ‘never fails to deliver; his proactive and solution-oriented approach works particularly well in Africa’. He advised the government of Nepal on a $7bn hyrdopower project to supply electricity to India and China. Andrew Roberts advised lead managers including JPMorgan on the Republic of Namibia’s $750m notes offering. Also recommended are capital markets partner Amy Geddes, global energy co-chair John Balsdon, project finance specialist Matthew Job, and Ian Yeo, for leveraged finance deals.

Leading individuals

John Balsdon - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Martin Kavanagh - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Islamic finance
Islamic finance - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s Islamic finance practice is led by Nadim Khan in Dubai and debt capital products specialist Andrew Roberts in London. Recent highlights include advising ArcelorMittal on the shari’ah-compliant financing of a steel pipes joint venture in Saudi Arabia. Other highlights included acting for Dubai Islamic Bank on a $70m murabaha financing for the Government of Pakistan.

Leading individuals

Nadim Khan - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Securitisation
Securitisation - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s ‘partners go the extra mile, and the team has tremendous depth’. The ‘invaluable’ Michael Poulton and his ‘magnificent’ team are ‘ahead of the game and highly knowledgeable in all areas of securitisation’. Poulton advised Virgin Atlantic on the £220m securitisation of its portfolio of slots at London Heathrow airport, and acted alongside Jake Jackaman for Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Barclays on TSB Bank’s £2bn securitisation of residential mortgages. Recommended associates include Francesca Segurini, who is a rising star, and Gauri Rao and Joy Amis, who are ‘robust negotiators with a no-nonsense approach’.

Leading individuals

Michael Poulton - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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London: Human resources

Employee share schemes
Employee share schemes - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

In addition to its ‘exceptional transactional practice’, Herbert Smith Freehills LLP also stands out for its expertise in financial services remuneration. Recent highlights include advising PA Consulting Group on the impact of a proposed investment by The Carlyle Group would have on its share arrangements, and assisting Sky with its acquisition of Sky Deutschland and Sky Italia and the extension of its employee ownership scheme. Paul Ellerman leads the department, which includes Mark Ife.

Leading individuals

Mark Ife - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Paul Ellerman - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Employment: employees/ unions
Leading individuals

Andrew Taggart - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Peter Frost - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Employment: employers and senior executives
Employment: employers - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

The ‘absolutely first-class’ team at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP provides ‘well-reasoned and clear advice’ and includes ‘serious, top-notch litigators that stand out above the rest’. Andrew Taggart (‘fantastic, unflappable, and among the most able employment solicitors in the country’) leads the practice and recently acted for Wesfarmers on the employment elements of its £340m acquisition of Homebase. Peter Frost, who ‘consistently gives good, clear and relevant advice’, defended a discrimination case against the Church of England. ‘First-class lawyer’ Christine Young and the ‘robust’ Tim Leaver are also singled out. Other clients include easyJet, Chevron and Lloyds Banking Group.

Leading individuals

Andrew Taggart - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Peter Frost - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Health and safety
Health and safety - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP has ‘solid analytical skills’ and a ‘detailed understanding of the issues’; the practice ‘will leave no stone unturned’ when acting for its clients, which include BP, Panasonic and Chevron. The team is representing Chevron in an investigation following a fatal explosion at one of the client’s refineries. Practice head Howard Watson is ‘at the top of his game’ and has ‘unmatched gravitas and commercial awareness’.

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Pensions
Pensions (non-contentious) - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Pensions: dispute resolution - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s ‘pre-eminent’ department is led by the ‘enormously energetic and creative’ Daniel Schaffer, who ‘lives and breathes each case’. The team includes the ‘experienced’ Alison Brown and the ‘pragmatic and knowledgeable’ Samantha Brown, who ‘has a great manner and continuously explores solutions’; she advised TUI Travel on the merger of its three pension schemes to form a sectionalised scheme. Paul Lewis is recommended for contentious matters, and clients praise senior associates Rachel Pinto and Michael Aherne.

Leading individuals

Daniel Schaffer - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Samantha Brown - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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London: Insurance

Insurance and reinsurance litigation
Insurance and reinsurance litigation - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP provides ‘prompt, insightful and sound commercial advice’, and is noted for its ‘good all-round strength and strong partner involvement’. Practice head Paul Lewis has ‘extensive industry knowledge, and an in-depth understanding of the client’s business’. Anthony Dempster has notable expertise in large property damage and business interruption cases, and David Reston is recommended for complex, high-value and commercially sensitive insurance disputes. Alexander Oddy is ‘an excellent lawyer with sound judgement’. Aviva, Gen Re and Royal & Sun Alliance are key clients.

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Insurance litigation: for policyholders
Insurance litigation: for policyholders - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s ‘outstanding practice’ is noted for its ‘excellent level of service’ and for being ‘very savvy about what insurers expect and how to manage those expectations’. Key figures include Alexander Oddy (who is ‘an excellent negotiator’), the ‘rigorous and diligent’ Greig Anderson, and property damage and business interruption expert Anthony Dempster. Paul Lewis heads the team, which is handling a growing number of Bermuda Form arbitrations. Standard Chartered Bank, Marsh and BP Corporation North America are notable clients.

Leading individuals

Alexander Oddy - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Anthony Dempster - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Paul Lewis - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Insurance: corporate and regulatory
Insurance: corporate and regulatory - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP provides ‘excellent, insightful knowledge and great value for money’. The practice acts for various insurers and intermediaries on complex restructuring and reinsurance transactions. Geoffrey Maddock has ‘excellent technical knowledge and an in-depth understanding of the issues faced by the client’. In other highlights, Barnaby Hinnigan acted for Willis on its acquisition of an 85% stake in Miller Insurance Services, and on the subsequent proposed disposal of a stake to BB&T.

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Insurance: insolvency and restructuring
Insurance: insolvency and restructuring - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP has notable expertise acting for the FSCS in insurance company defaults; and acting for policyholders on solvent schemes of arrangement and Part VII transfers. In other key mandates, practice head Laurence Elliott advised the provisional liquidators of Independent Insurance Company on all aspects of its liquidation, and Christopher Foster acted for Barbican Managing Agency in commercial court proceedings concerning a number of professional indemnity policies. Kevin Pullen is also recommended.

Leading individuals

Laurence Elliott - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Personal injury: claimant
Leading individuals

Howard Watson - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Personal injury: defendant
Personal injury: defendant - ranked: tier 3

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s ‘approach to each client is informed by the broader strategic concerns of the indemnitor’ and the team is ‘always interested in facilitating resolution and minimising disputes’. Tony Dempster jointly heads the practice with the ‘responsive, perceptive and detail-oriented’ Howard Watson, who specialises in high-value group actions.

Leading individuals

Howard Watson - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Product liability: defendant
Product liability: defendant - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Tony Dempster, Howard Watson and Philip Pfeffer head the practice at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, which regularly focuses on major product liability cases and class actions, typically with international elements. In an illustration of its cross-border strength, the practice is acting for BAT Italia in a class action concerning allegations relating to addiction to cigarette smoking and nicotine manipulation. Other high-profile matters included its ongoing representation of Diageo in claims arising from its distribution of thalidomide. Damian Grave is also recommended.

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Professional negligence
Professional negligence - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s ‘thorough and hardworking’ team is active across a number of sectors including financial services, insurance, legal, construction, accountancy and pensions, where it acts for insurers as well as blue-chip corporates. The ‘very commercial’ Paul Lewis leads the global contentious insurance and reinsurance practice, which includes David Reston, who is ‘astute, industrious, and very down to earth’, Tom Leech QC, and the ‘exceptional’ Ian Gatt QC. Sarah McNally and Harry Edwards were recently promoted to the partnership.

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London: Private client

Contentious trusts and probate
Contentious trusts and probate - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP is praised for its ‘straightforward advice and good teamwork and for being ‘very good at explaining complicated issues to non-specialists in clear, concise and simple terms’. For high-end, multi-jurisdictional litigation the firm can draw on expertise in a diverse array of offices such as Moscow, Hong Kong and the Middle East. Tom Leech QC is ‘an experienced and accomplished advocate’. Robert Hunter joined Edmonds Marshall McMahon.

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London: Projects, energy and natural resources

Infrastructure (including PFI and PPP)
Infrastructure (including PFI and PPP) - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Patrick Mitchell leads Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s group, which is ‘one of the best’ according to clients. Julia Pyke (who is praised for her ‘excellent experience’) has been acting for the sponsor in negotiations regarding the £1bn Tidal Lagoon Swansea Bay project. Other highlights included advising on Thames Tideway and Hinkley Point C. Also recommended are Adrian Clough and regulatory expert Silke Goldberg, who is now a partner.

Leading individuals

Adrian Clough - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Mining and minerals
Mining and minerals - ranked: tier 3

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Greg Mulley’s team at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP is particularly noted for its project finance expertise. David Walton has been acting for ING, BNP Paribas, Santander and Société Générale as the lenders on the €222m financing of the Muga potash project in Spain. Other clients include BHP Billiton, Lonmin and Vedanta Resources.

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Oil and gas
Oil and gas - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s ‘outstanding’ practice has been seeing a significant increase in disputes and instructions regarding alternative capital providers. Litigation specialist James Baily successfully defended BP, Eni, Talisman Sinopec Energy and JX Nippon, the owners of the Andrew Field in the North Sea, against an £85m claim brought by Scottish Power as the buyer under a long-term GSA before the Commercial Court concerning the prolonged shut-in of the Andrew Field. Anna Howell, who was appointed co-head in 2015, led the team advising Carlyle International Energy Partners on its acquisition of Sterling Resources’ Romanian business. Also recommended are fellow joint head John Balsdon, Stephen Murray and the ‘very commercial’ Thomas Bethel.

Leading individuals

James Baily - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Jason Fox - Bracewell (UK) LLP

Stephen Murray - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Power (including electricity, nuclear and renewables)
Power (including electricity, nuclear and renewables) - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s ‘outstanding and dedicated’ group provides ‘excellent advice in all practice areas’. The well-regarded Julia Pyke has been advising on a number of landmark projects, including Hinkley Point C and the Tidal Lagoon (Swansea Bay) project. Martin Kavanagh has been advising the Government of Nepal on negotiations with a number of international developers regarding the development of six hydroelectric power projects valued in excess of $7bn. The team was strengthened by the arrivals of Simon Caridia from Linklaters LLP and former Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Sir Ed Davey as a consultant. Silke Goldberg is now a partner. Clients also recommend Matthew Job and Mark Newbery, who is now a consultant.

Leading individuals

Julia Pyke - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Mark Newbery - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Matthew Job - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Water
Water - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Malcolm Lombers and James Quinney lead Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s practice, which is noted for its ability to provide ‘practical advice in difficult negotiations’. Infrastructure head Patrick Mitchell and finance partner David Wyles acted for the Bazalgette consortium on its successful bid to become the infrastructure provider for the Thames Tideway tunnel. Tim Briggs has ‘excellent industry knowledge’ and is also recommended.

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London: Public sector

Administrative and public law
Administrative and public law - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s team includes standout practitioners Andrew Lidbetter, Nusrat Zar and Anna Eliasson, who ‘share the same essential qualities: sound knowledge of the legal principles, grasp of the facts, attention to detail, and excellent drafting and writing skills’. In an illustration of its market-leading position, the practice was called on to represent the Child Poverty Action Group in judicial review proceedings challenging the cap on out-of-work household benefits. Other highlights included successfully defending KPMG in a high-profile judicial review pertaining to interest rate hedging products (IRHPs) following allegations of failings in the sale of IRHPs by various UK banks.

Leading individuals

Andrew Lidbetter - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Nusrat Zar - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Local government
Local government - ranked: tier 4

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP has notable experience handling regeneration projects, including assisting Silvertown Partnership and the Greater London Authority with the Silvertown Quays redevelopment. Solicitor advocate Andrew Lidbetter heads the team.

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London: Real estate

Commercial property
Commercial property: development - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Commercial property: general - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Commercial property: hotels and leisure - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Commercial property: investment - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Commercial property: retail - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s practice has been busy with a number of infrastructure-related mandates, including advising London and Continental Railways on the £371m sale of its interests in the King’s Cross Central Partnership. The team also secured some significant new panel appointments and continued to work for leading developers such as Hammerson and Brookfield Property Partners; head of practice Donald Rowlands acted for the latter on the first pre-letting at 100 Bishopsgate, London. Julian Pollock and Jeremy Walden lead the investment team.

Leading individuals

Donald Rowlands - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Construction
Construction: contentious - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Construction: non-contentious - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s non-contentious practice is led by Nicholas Downing, whose impressive caseload ranges across the most significant real estate, infrastructure and energy projects; for example Downing is advising Capital & Counties Properties on the redevelopment of Earls Court and Olympia. On the contentious side, Mark Lloyd-Williams’ team mainly handles international cases, although in the UK Ann Levin is active in a number of PFI disputes, including representing Prospect Healthcare (Hairmyres) in an £11m litigation concerning the water pipework installed throughout the Hairmyres Hospital in Scotland.

Leading individuals

Nicholas Downing - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Environment
Environment - ranked: tier 4

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

At Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, litigator John Ogilvie and senior associate Julie Vaughan are defending Vedanta Resources and Konkola Copper Mines in High Court proceedings relating to Konkola’s mining operations in Zambia. Vaughan also has been active advising in relation to UK fracking operations.

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Planning
Planning - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s team includes newly promoted partner Catherine Howard, who was active in the infrastructure and energy space for clients such as EDF Energy and Cuadrilla Resources. Practice head Matthew White and Patrick Robinson focus on real estate matters and, in one key piece of work, White acted for Tottenham Hotspur Football Club in successfully resisting a High Court challenge of the validity of a CPO relating to land for the club’s new stadium.

Leading individuals

Matthew White - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Patrick Robinson - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Property finance
Property finance - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Deutsche Bank, Lloyds Bank, Blackstone and Omni Capital Partners are among the clients of Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s ‘magnificent’ team, which is led by Simon Chadney and Gary Hommel; these ‘robust negotiators’ are praised as having ‘extensive knowledge and a no-nonsense approach’. British Land and Société Générale are recent client wins.

Leading individuals

Gary Hommel - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Robert Carr - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Simon Chadney - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Property litigation
Property litigation - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP handles substantial litigation, such as representing Canary Wharf Group in pursuing claims for unpaid rents and other damages against the administrators of Lehman Brothers. Matthew Bonye heads the team, which can draw on considerable resources in the firm’s Belfast office. Other standout individuals include Martin Dawbney and Tom Leech QC.

Leading individuals

Matthew Bonye - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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London: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

Brand management
Brand management - ranked: tier 4

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP defended two clients in a trade mark and passing-off dispute with the London Taxi Company, and is defending social networking app creator Hello Network in trade mark infringement and passing-off proceedings brought before the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court by the publishers of HELLO! Magazine. Joel Smith is recommended.

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Data protection
Data protection - ranked: tier 4

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s team is noted for its ‘strong understanding of the issues faced by clients’. The key contact is Nick Pantlin, who advised Martin Brower on restrictions on the transfer of personal data following the European Commission’s invalidation of the safe harbour agreement with the US, and assisted ElectraLink with its participation in a smart metering programme. Amanda Hale moved to Ashurst in March 2016.

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IT and telecoms
IT and telecoms - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

The ‘very attentive’ Nick Pantlin heads the practice at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, which attracts praise for its ability to provide ‘practical solutions’. Pantlin’s highlights included acting for Capita on contract arrangements for services to support the mortgage business of a major UK bank, and advising TSB Bank on its separation from Lloyds Banking Group. On the telecoms front, the practice advised Telefónica Group on its agreement to sell Telefónica Europe to Hutchison Whampoa, and assisted Telefónica UK with two separate spectrum auctions. Nick Elverston and Amanda Hale moved to Ashurst in March 2016.

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Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP is praised for its ‘attention to client needs and requests, and for its well-tailored advice’. The practice, led by the global head of IP Mark Shillito, is particularly experienced in coordinating multi-jurisdictional parallel proceedings. In a recent highlight, Sebastian Moore (who is noted for his ‘second-to-none client-handling skills’) successfully defended Gilead in a patent infringement case brought by Idenix and a counterclaim for revocation of Idenix's European patent. Also recommended is Sarah Burke, who is ‘very calm throughout, despite high pressure and tight timescales’; Joel Smith, who is recommended in the trade mark space; life sciences specialist Sophie Rich; and patent expert Andrew Moir.

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Media and entertainment (including media finance)
Media and entertainment (including media finance) - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s practice is led by ‘robust negotiator’ Nick Elverston, who advised Al-Arab on the launch, suspension and relocation of an Arabic-language news channel, and acted for video on demand company FilmFlex Movies. Senior associate Hayley Brady is ‘unflappable under pressure, with incredible stamina and a real eye for detail’.

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Pharmaceuticals and biotechnology
Pharmaceuticals and biotechnology - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s pharmaceuticals and healthcare department is led by ‘hugely experienced’ patent lawyer Sophie Rich and M&A specialist Alan Montgomery. Rich acted alongside Sebastian Moore for Biogen, Roche and Genentech UK in patent actions against Celltrion and Hospira. Moore’s work for Gilead included handling global proceedings against Idenix that relate to a hepatitis C treatment. Product liability specialist Howard Watson acts for Diageo.

Leading individuals

Sophie Rich - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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London: Transport

Aviation
Aviation - ranked: tier 2

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP’s ‘knowledgeable’ team is led by Gareth Roberts, who is experienced in corporate and M&A transactions, and Kim Dietzel, who is noted for EU and UK competition law. It advised Virgin Atlantic on its £220m secured bond financing, using a major proportion of its landing and take-off slot portfolio at Heathrow airport as security for the debt. Other clients include TAG Farnborough Airport, easyJet, TUI Travel, Gatwick Airport, UK Civil Aviation Authority (UK CAA) and Heathrow Airport Holdings. Gregg Rowan and Gavin Williams are also recommended.

Leading individuals

Gareth Roberts - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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Rail
Rail - ranked: tier 1

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

The ‘strong’ team at Herbert Smith Freehills LLP is led by Patrick Mitchell and includes Adrian Clough, who is ‘a brilliant operator’; the ‘first-rate’ Tim Briggs; and of counsel John Williams, who ‘has a great reputation’. Highlights included advising HS2 Ltd on the procurement of rail infrastructure, rail systems and rolling stock, and advising Inter City Railways Limited (ICRL), a joint venture between Stagecoach and Virgin, on its successful £3.3bn bid for the InterCity East Coast (ICEC) rail franchise.

Leading individuals

Adrian Clough - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Patrick Mitchell - Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

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