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TOP tier recommendations
London: Corporate and commercial > Equity capital markets: UK capability
London: Corporate and commercial > Equity capital markets: US capability
London: Corporate and commercial > Financial services
London: Corporate and commercial > M&A: premium deals, £250m+
London: Crime, fraud and licensing > Fraud: corporate crime
London: Finance > Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans
London: Finance > Corporate restructuring and insolvency
London: Finance > Debt capital markets
London: Finance > Derivatives and structured products
London: Finance > Emerging markets
London: Finance > Investment funds
London: Finance > Securitisation
London: Finance > Trade finance
London: Projects, energy and natural resources > Mining and minerals
London: Projects, energy and natural resources > Oil and gas
London: Projects, energy and natural resources > PFI and PPP
London: Projects, energy and natural resources > Power (including electricity, nuclear and renewables)
London: Projects, energy and natural resources > Water
London: Real estate > Environment
London: Real estate > Property finance
London: Corporate and commercial > EU and competition
London: Corporate and commercial > M&A: mid-market, £50m-£250m
London: Corporate and commercial > M&A: smaller deals, up to £50m
London: Corporate and commercial > Private equity: transactions
London: Corporate and commercial > VAT and indirect tax
London: Dispute resolution > International arbitration
London: Dispute resolution > Mediators
London: Dispute resolution > Public international law
London: Dispute resolution > Tax litigation
London: Finance > Commodities: derivatives
London: Finance > Commodities: physicals
London: Finance > High yield
London: Finance > Islamic finance
London: Finance > Overview
London: Human resources > Employment: employers and senior executives
London: Human resources > Overview
London: Real estate > Overview
London: Real estate > Planning
London: Real estate > Property litigation
London: TMT (technology, media and telecoms) > Intellectual property
London: TMT (technology, media and telecoms) > IT and telecoms
London: TMT (technology, media and telecoms) > Media and entertainment
London: TMT (technology, media and telecoms) > Media finance
London: TMT (technology, media and telecoms) > Pharmaceuticals and biotechnology
London: Corporate and commercial
Within Commercial contracts, tier 4
The commercial practice at Linklaters LLP’s draws heavily on the firm’s TMT practice, of which John Crozier is the global head. The four-partner team advised the Post Office on its operational separation from parent company Royal Mail, and was instructed by a number of major financial services clients on a range of BPO and ITO matters. Richard Cumbley has contentious and non-contentious IT outsourcing expertise, and has been advising on a $400m global outsourcing project for major client BP. Julian Cunningham-Day is recommended for his IT procurement and offshoring expertise.
Within Corporate tax, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP has a ‘first-rate’ team possessed of ‘huge quality’ and ‘tremendous strength in depth’, and notable strength in M&A, equity fundraisings, real estate, and transactions in highly regulated sectors. It has recently been involved in a broad spectrum of major equity listings and high-profile corporate transactions for leading public company clients. Mark Kingstone and Sarah Lindley acted for Anglo-American on the corporate tax aspects of a £1.8bn joint venture with Lafarge to create a leading UK construction materials company; and Dominic Winter and Louise Palmer advised Evraz Group on the listing of Evraz plc and the group’s redomicile to the UK. Other recommended individuals include Yash Rupal, Michael Hardwick and Elizabeth Conway.
Within Equity capital markets: UK capability, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP has ‘excellent partner and associate experience’. John Lane’s equities group includes Charles Jacobs, who advised Glencore on its $10bn IPO, the largest ever in the UK. Lane led on the £1.35bn Vallares IPO for bookrunners including Credit Suisse. The team is noted for its breadth and depth, and includes Ben Dulieu, who has ‘excellent product knowledge and commercial understanding’; and rising star David Avery-Gee, who represented Evraz on its $9bn share offer and listing.
Within Equity capital markets: US capability, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
In Jason Manketo (‘one of the best US capital markets lawyers in London’), Cecil Quillen, Patrick Sheil, Mike Bienenfeld, Tom O’Neill and Brigid Rentoul, Linklaters LLP has one of the City’s deepest US benches. Sheil advised Glencore on US aspects of its $10bn IPO; O’Neill represented bookrunners including Credit Suisse on the £1.35bn Vallares IPO; and Manketo led on a €7.5bn rights issue for Unicredit.
Within EU and competition, Linklaters LLP is a second tier firm,
Linklaters LLP is an ‘excellent firm with a broad range of expertise’, and is ‘always one step ahead of the opposition’. It acted for Glencore its all-share merger of equals with Xstrata; and for Johnson & Johnson on its acquisition of Synthes. In investigations, it advised Tarmac on an OFT market study into aggregates which began in September 2010. On the cartels side, it continues its representation of subsidiaries of Dow Chemical in the rubber cartel case. Eamonn Doran heads the team; Christian Ahlborn has a ‘particularly strong economic background and stands out due to his hands-on and clear advice’; Nicole Kar is ‘commercial, front foot, and very responsive’; and Paula Riedel is a ‘very safe pair of hands’.
Within Financial services, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP retained the leading role in the Lehman Europe insolvency, as the administrator’s principal legal advisers. Michael Kent, Peter Bevan, Nadia Swann and Sarah Parkhouse attract praise, along with James Gardner, Andrew Hughes, Christa Band and Patrick Robinson on the contentious side. The team is noted for its ability to provide ‘detailed analysis’.
Within M&A: premium deals, £250m+, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP’s international platform and focus on the financial services, energy, TMT and mining sectors proved instrumental in capturing the lion’s share of the largest cross-border deals, with 2011 seeing it advise on 80 deals with a total value of $85.8bn. Highlights included representing BP in its $9bn joint venture with Reliance, which involved BP’s acquisition of a 30% stake in 23 oil and gas production blocks operated by Reliance and marked the largest inward investment into India in 2011. Global head of corporate Jeremy Parr can call on 40 partners to provide transactional strength in depth, including private equity co-head Ian Bagshaw, Roger Barron and Iain Wagstaff. Matthew Middleditch moved to the firm’s Hong Kong office in 2011.
Within Private equity: transactions, Linklaters LLP is a third tier firm,
Linklaters LLP has an increasingly integrated private equity practice across its international network. Core client HgCapital continues to generate a significant flow of work, and recently instructed the firm on its combined acquisition of the Iris Software Group and Computer Software Group. The team also secured a first-time instruction from Bridgepoint, on its acquisition of Quilter & Co from Morgan Stanley Smith Barney. Co-headed by Ian Bagshaw and the ‘very hardworking and commercial’ Richard Youle, the group is praised for its ‘broad strength and high service levels’.
Within VAT and indirect tax, Linklaters LLP is a second tier firm,
Linklaters LLP’s team is able to draw on the strength of the firm’s wider corporate offering, and advises a number of high-profile, blue-chip clients. It has notable expertise in transactional, corporate and real estate related indirect tax matters. Martin Lynchehan is recommended.
London: Crime, fraud and licensing
Within Fraud: civil, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP advised Barclays as agent for a syndicate of banks in relation to the winding up of Saad Investments Company Ltd (SICL), and is advising Grant Thornton as liquidators of SICL and several other companies within the group; fraud on a massive scale is alleged, and the liquidation involves complex cross-border issues. Other recent highlights include advising Deutsche Bank on the SPhinX collapse, which involves proceedings in the Cayman Islands and New York. Christa Band is highly rated for her contentious regulatory expertise.
Within Fraud: corporate crime, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Satindar Dogra heads the practice at Linklaters LLP, which advised BAE in corruption investigations by the SFO and DOJ. Other work highlights included advising the administrators of Torex Retail plc ( in administration) in an SFO investigation.
London: Dispute resolution
Within Banking litigation: investment and retail, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP ‘excels in the area of financial services litigation, with particular expertise in investment banking disputes’. Alan Walls has been ‘a City stalwart for many years’, and Christa Band gives ‘no-nonsense advice’. Andrew Hughes is also highly recommended. The firm advised Standard Chartered Bank in its claim for sums due under two oil derivative hedging transactions entered into with the state-owned Ceylon Petroleum Company in Sri Lanka; and is assisting JPMorgan in relation to the enforcement of payment obligations of $195m under an English law CDO transaction against the operator of the Berlin public transport system.
Within Commercial litigation, Linklaters LLP is a second tier firm,
Linklaters LLP’s national practice head Michael Bennett is ‘impressive’. The team advised News Corporation’s independent Management and Standards Committee in relation to all relevant investigations and enquiries into the News of the World phone hacking case, police payments and other connected issues. Euan Clarke, Satindar Dogra, Kathryn Ludlow, Nick Porter, Christopher Style QC and John Turnbull are key figures.
Within International arbitration, tier 4
Greg Reid and Christopher Style QC are key contacts at Linklaters LLP. The firm advised the Republic of Poland on a multi-party settlement intended to end the longest corporate dispute in recent Polish history.
Within Public international law, Linklaters LLP is a third tier firm,
Linklaters LLP represented the Republic of Poland in the defence of a €2.5bn claim under the French/Polish BIT, resulting in a successful settlement and withdrawal of the claim. Greg Reid is a key contact.
Within Tax litigation, Linklaters LLP is a second tier firm,
Linklaters LLP fields a cross-disciplinary group of tax experts and litigators with great experience in tax disputes and investigations. The ‘frighteningly powerful’ team acted for BP in reclaiming stamp duty reserve tax charged by HMRC. Michael Sanders has expertise in complex and high-value tax disputes involving the application of both UK and EU law, and Dominic Winter advises on disputes with HMRC.
Within Acquisition finance, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
With its ‘deep bench’ ensuring ‘consistency across the board’, Linklaters LLP handles complex multi-jurisdictional mandates for both banks and sponsors. ‘One of the most experienced lawyers in the business’, Nick Syson co-heads the practice, and is ‘always on top of the process’ and a ‘top choice for complex high-pressure deals’. Along with US-qualified Mark Hageman, he advised the banks on the €1.6bn bank and bond financing of Apax Partners’ acquisition of Orange Switzerland from France Telecom. On the sponsor side, Chris Howard advised Carlyle on its £1bn acquisition of RAC from Aviva. Co-head Brian Gray, David Ereira, Annette Kurdian and Gideon Moore are also recommended.
Within Asset finance and leasing, tier 5
At Linklaters LLP, the ‘excellent’ Olga Petrovic is the core partner handling asset finance transactions. Petrovic recently advised Standard Chartered on a series of structured lease-financing transactions relating to a number of vessels for three Asian carriers.
Within Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
The ‘extremely good’ banking practice at Linklaters LLP draws on the firm’s expertise in restructuring, capital markets and corporate/M&A, and enjoys strong relationships with a host of major banks and financial institutions. It acted for BNP Paribas in relation to a €6bn revolving credit facility for BMW, and advised a group of ten banks in connection with a £800m debut syndicated financing for Jaguar Land Rover. On the borrower side, syndicated loans clients include Rio Tinto, Vodafone and Travis Perkins. Gideon Moore was promoted to global head of banking in September 2011, and the highly recommended Philip Spittal co-heads the mainstream banking practice with Stuart Thomas. John Tucker, Jeremy Stokeld and leveraged finance co-heads Nick Syson and Brian Gray are also integral to the team.
Within Commodities: derivatives, Linklaters LLP is a second tier firm,
Linklaters LLP is ‘the best choice for carbon and metals work’, and excels in structured commodity derivatives. Vinay Samani advised BlackRock on the establishment of a precious metals exchange-traded commodities platform. Rhian Roberts provides ‘excellent, balanced advice across a wide range of commodity derivatives’.
Within Commodities: physicals, tier 4
Linklaters LLP’s Chris Staples is ‘an expert in all areas of the carbon market, and is able to provide commercially appropriate advice on an urgent basis’. He recently advised International Finance Corporation on establishing a carbon facility programme.
Within Corporate restructuring and insolvency, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Headed by the ‘outstanding’ Tony Bugg, Linklaters LLP’s ‘commercial and proactive’ 34-partner team has ‘tremendous strength and depth’, and acts for a varied client base spanning banks, distressed funds, IPs, corporate debtors and directors. The ‘very pragmatic, calming and knowledgeable’ David Ereira and Richard Bussell advised the administrators of Snoras bank in Lithuania on its insolvency. Along with its ongoing involvement in the Lehman Brothers’ insolvency, other high-profile mandates included advising RBS and Lloyds as co-ordinators of a syndicate of lenders on HMV Group’s £220m restructuring, and representing the landlords’ committee on the restructuring of Southern Cross. The ‘focused and highly committed’ Rebecca Jarvis is recommended, as are Chris Howard, Richard Holden and Robert Elliott.
Within Debt capital markets, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Noted for the ‘high level of commitment from senior partners’, Carson Welsh’s debt team at Linklaters LLP has many outstanding individuals including Richard Levy, who is ‘very responsive and astute – one of the best’; Francis Kucera, who brings ‘detailed knowledge and valuable experience’ to emerging markets deals; Keith Thomson, who is ‘far and away the most experienced lawyer for equity-linked advice’; Jasper Evans, ‘a market leader in corporate trust work’; the ‘highly rated’ Jane Brown; US-qualified Patrick Sheil; and Nigel Pridmore, who is a ‘thought leader’ in offshore renminbi bonds. Deal highlights included advising the lead managers on the $8bn issue of buffer capital notes issued by Credit Suisse Group, including contingent conversion features to meet new capital requirements regulations.
Within Derivatives and structured products, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Known for high quality and innovation, Linklaters LLP is ‘one of the best, and highly accomplished’. The team, led by Mark Fletcher, has many stars, including Simon Firth, who ‘commands a great deal of respect’; Deepak Sitlani, ‘a great problem solver’; Mark Brown, who is ‘knowledgeable, accessible, and able to see issues from the client’s perspective’; Paul Lewis, who is ‘a leading name for fund-linked derivatives’, and advises the European Financial Stability Fund; Pauline Ashall, who advises the administrators of Lehman Brothers; and David Phillips, who stands out for longevity deals on both the buy-side and sell-side. A ‘market leader’, and ‘excellent at regulatory and retail matters’, the firm is advising ISDA on equity derivatives definitions, with Michael Voisin heavily involved.
Within Emerging markets, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP remains head and shoulders above the competition for emerging markets work, drawing on a global network of integrated, cross-practice teams to service clients in the largest multi-jurisdictional transactions. Mirthe van Kesteren heads up the emerging markets banking and structured trade finance practice, which acts for multinational companies and major businesses worldwide. She is a prominent practitioner in the CIS, Ukraine and Kazakhstan markets, and recently advised Barclays Capital on a $2bn facility for Sberbank of Russia, as well as acting for Citigroup in connection with a remittance-backed facility for the Agricultural Development Bank of Ghana. Sandeep Katwala has over 20 years’ experience in India and manages the EEMEA practice. Daniel Tyrer advises both borrowers and lenders in the energy space in Russia and CIS. Dominic Sanders and Patrick Sheil are also recommended.
Within High yield, Linklaters LLP is a second tier firm,
Linklaters LLP is ‘mounting a challenge to the US firms in London’, becoming increasingly visible on high yield deals. The team is jointly led by the ‘thorough’ and ‘commercial’ Mark Hageman, and Alexander Naidenov, who is ‘energetic and enthusiastic’. Recent mandates include acting for the underwriters in a high yield bond financing for Evonic Carbon Black; advising House of Fraser in relation to a £250m bond issue; and acting for the banks financing the circa €1.6bn acquisition of Orange Switzerland from France Telecom.
Within Investment funds, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP ‘can assemble highly experienced lawyers in a multidisciplinary team’, and has ‘a quality funds practice in the US’. Work spans listed and private funds, where it is particularly strong, as well as bespoke hedge and retail funds involving certain UCITS platforms. Jonathan de Lance-Holmes, head of the London investment management group, is ‘a creative, highly experienced funds lawyer’. Global co-head of the investment managers team Tim Shipton, regulatory expert Peter Bevan and Nicola Hopkins are also recommended. The team advised InfraRed Capital Partners on its spinout and restructuring. Other clients include BXR Group, Cinven, Lend Lease and ProLogis.
Combined bank/bond financing structures consequently remained to the fore, particularly on larger transactions. Latham & Watkins LLP has the most complete offering in this respect, and is highly rated for acquisition finance, as well as having a top-tier high yield offering. Of the Magic Circle firms, Clifford Chance recently followed Linklaters LLP’s lead in the high yield space and bolstered its offering with a significant hire from Latham & Watkins LLP. Those two firms, along with Allen & Overy LLP, have the most complete finance offerings, with excellent banking relationships and comprehensive international networks.
Within Securitisation, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
‘One of the market leaders’, Linklaters LLP is ‘very good in all aspects – strategic overview, tactical implementation, document drafting and client engagement’. Its ‘highly commercial and effective negotiators’ include James Harbach and Andrew Vickery, who are both ‘very sharp technically’; Julian Davies (‘knowledgeable, incisive, board friendly’); and Anne Hoe (‘very experienced, cool headed, personable and insightful, with broad and in-depth industry knowledge’). Managing associate Alex Shopov ‘punches above his weight, has excellent attention to detail and makes great efforts with client care’. Highlights included advising Lloyds TSB Bank on a £1.6bn securitisation of PFI loans, and Anglian Water on a structured US private placement whole-business securitisation.
Within Trade finance, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Mirthe van Kesteren’s team at Linklaters LLP ‘really adds value on complex deals’, including cross-border matters and innovative, highly structured transactions. Toby Grimstone advised Interpipe Group on an $887m multi-facility restructuring including pre-export finance facilities. The team also advised Essar Oil in relation to a $2bn secured borrowing base. John Tucker is back on the front line after his time as global head of the firm’s banking practice.
London: Human resources
Within Employee share schemes, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
The ‘excellent’ team at Linklaters LLP acts for a range of high-profile clients including Anglo-American, Aviva, BAE Systems, J Sainsbury, Rio Tinto, BP, and British Airways. It advised RBS on a deferral plan and rollout in 56 jurisdictions, and Citi on the rollout of deferral plans in 91 jurisdictions. Gillian Chapman gives ‘timely, proactive’ advice.
Within Employment: employers and senior executives, Linklaters LLP is a third tier firm,
Nicola Rabson at Linklaters LLP is recognised for her ‘very good industry knowledge of the financial services sector’; she is ‘tough, efficient and committed, and will find the practical solution to any problem’. Simon Kerr-Davis is ‘very skilled at quickly grasping the issue’, and managing associate Jillian Naylor is ’destined for stardom’. The firm’s lead in the Commerzbank litigation is indicative of its abilities in strategic litigation, while of equal profile is its defence of protective award claims brought against the administrators of Woolworths.
In other disciplines, pensions issues have rarely been out of the media, with proposed changes to public sector pensions causing widespread industrial action. Legal work continued to focus on risk management of underfunded schemes, with a notable trend in risk dispersal to insurance companies via buyouts, buy-ins and longevity swaps. Sacker & Partners LLP stands out as a specialist pensions powerhouse, and CMS Cameron McKenna LLP, Hogan Lovells International LLP, and Linklaters LLP also retain a tight grip on their pole position for both contentious and non-contentious pension matters.
Within Pensions, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP is ‘excellent in terms of combined pensions knowledge and litigation skills’. It covers the full range of trustee and corporate pensions work, and is a market leader in structuring longevity swaps. The firm recently advised on a debt-for-equity swap followed by the purchase of a buy-in insurance policy by the trustees of the Uniq Pension Scheme; and represented Legal & General Assurance Society on a bespoke bulk annuity insurance contract relating to the T&N Retirement Benefits Scheme. Isabel France is ‘very focused, anticipates issues, and has a good overview of all that is going on’; Claire Petheram ‘has strong attention to detail but sees the bigger picture’; and Phil Goss is ‘impressive on investment issues’. Rosalind Knowles, Tim Cox and Ruth Goldman are also highly recommended. Pensions litigator Mark Blyth ‘writes some of the best letters you’ll ever see in preparation for a court battle. He maximises your chances of winning a case before you even get into the courtroom’. His team recently acted for the Trustees of the RHM Pension Scheme; the joint administrators of various Lehman companies; and Nortel Networks Inc and NN CALA.
Within Insurance: corporate and regulatory, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
At Linklaters LLP, Victoria Sander has taken over as global insurance sector head, and recently acted for Royal London on its acquisition of Royal Liver, which constituted a demutualisation of one of the UK’s largest societies. Duncan Barber advised Old Mutual plc and Skandia Life Assurance on the disposal of the latter’s Finnish branch to OP-Pohjol; and Dan Schuster-Woldan advised AXA on its acquisition of HSBC’s general insurance business in Hong Kong, Singapore and Mexico. Matthew Bland is also recommended. Matthew Middleditch is now based in the firm’s Hong Kong office The team is ‘dedicated’, and valued for its ‘quick response times’.
London: Private client
London: Projects, energy and natural resources
Within Infrastructure, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
The ‘very professional and very solid’ Linklaters LLP remains particularly active in the Russian projects market. Recent mandates include advising the consortium lenders, including VTB Capital and the European Development Bank, on the St Petersburg Western High-Speed Diameter toll road. In the UK, the team is acting for the sponsors on the procurement and £1.6bn financing of a new fleet of 115 trains to operate on the upgraded Thameslink network. Bruce White is ‘a highly effective lawyer, and a commanding presence in his field’.
Within Mining and minerals, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP acted for Glencore on its $60bn IPO, the largest-ever IPO on the premium listing segment of the London Stock Exchange, and one which obtained a simultaneous secondary listing on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Among several other high-profile IPOs and financings, highlights for Charlie Jacobs’ group also included advising De Beers on its ten-year joint venture agreement with the government of Botswana. Jacobs remains highly regarded for his Africa expertise.
Within Oil and gas, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP is ‘one of the best for oil and gas project finance’. Among the firm’s recent transactions, it advised Refineria de Cartagena on the development and financing of an existing 80,000bpd refinery in Colombia. Daniel Tyrer is ‘an extremely strong all-round lawyer’; and global practice co-head Matthew Hagopian is ‘very sharp, knowledgeable and accessible, and has a good background in transactions involving Latin-American companies’. Fellow co-head Manzer Ijaz and Clive Ransome also attract high praise from clients.
The mining and minerals market was dominated by the $60bn Glencore IPO (the largest-ever flotation on the LSE), with Linklaters LLP and Clifford Chance both acting on the transaction. Its equivalent on the projects side was the Oyu Tolgoi copper and gold mine, with White & Case LLP, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP and Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP among those instructed on the financing side. For those not engaged in record-breaking listings or mega-projects, the story was still a healthy one; many small to mid-cap companies thought the time was right for an AIM listing, resulting in a glut of work advising on placings, and M&A and general corporate work remained strong.
Within PFI and PPP, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP’s ‘excellent’ team worked on some notable international PPP projects in 2011. A cross-office team advised the African Development Bank and the European Investment Bank on financing for the development of the Cape Verde Wind Farm PPP project, the first large-scale wind project in Africa. Daniel Tyrer is advising the lender group in relation to the financing of the Western High-Speed Diameter toll road in St Petersburg, the first of its kind under the city’s PPP framework. Group head Bruce White remains very highly regarded for his advice to banks on domestic PFI financings.
Within Power (including electricity, nuclear and renewables), Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP has ‘extensive knowledge in various jurisdictions for a variety of stakeholders’, and is ‘equally well placed to advise lenders and project sponsors’. Clive Ransome has ‘excellent knowledge of all aspects of the power business, including the latest technologies’; and Daniel Tyrer also attracts praise from clients. The firm acted forCo Energy on its acquisition of Powerfuel Power and Powerfuel Mining.
Within Water, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
With a strong corporate element, Linklaters LLP’s broad practice includes regulatory, financing, outsourcing and M&A. The firm advised the lenders, including Barclays Capital, on the £1.3bn financing of Cheung Kong Infrastructure Holdings’ offer for the entire issued share capital of Northumbrian Water Group. Julian Davies’ group has also been very active advising water companies on holding company refinancing, whole business securitisation and private financing placements into the US.
London: Real estate
Within Commercial property, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP acted for AREA Property Partners and Delancey Real Estate Asset Management on their takeover and subsequent take-private of Minerva plc, one of the few such deals successfully executed in the past decade. Other work included acting for Credit Suisse Asset Management on the £165m sale of Tower Bridge House. Anne Byrne’s team is ‘excellent; its lawyers don ’t limit themselves by answering only the questions you ask’. The group includes the highly rated Andrew Bruce; Martin Elliott, who shows ‘sound judgement’; Matt Elliott; Huw Baker; and Patrick Plant.
Within Construction, tier 5
Linklaters LLP has gradually scaled down its practice in recent years, but Huw Baker continues to act on developments in the retail and leisure sectors.
Within Environment, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP’s environmental group advised Rio Tinto on the conversion of Lynemouth power station to produce biomass energy, and is advising the Treasury of South Africa on its renewables programme. The firm’s strong links to financial institutions generate work on significant transactions, such as acting on financing of a Glencore project in Equatorial Guinea. A dedicated team handles climate change issues, for which Chris Staples is the main contact; he recently advised the International Finance Corporation (IFC) on a facility to invest in carbon credits. Vanessa Havard-Williams is the global practice head.
Despite the uncertainty, core office and retail assets in London and other major European cities continued to attract global investors. The high-end residential market in London also continued to thrive. Demand for top-end City properties was led predominantly by Asian and US investors targeting £100m+ core assets and development opportunities. Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP, Clifford Chance and Linklaters LLP continue to dominate in commercial property. Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP acted on three of the largest investment deals of the year, including advising Tishman Speyer on its £172m acquisition of the Sanctuary Buildings. Linklaters LLP acted for AREA Property Partners and Delancey Real Estate Asset Management on their takeover and subsequent take-private of Minerva plc, one of the standout deals of the year, and Clifford Chance was kept busy by longstanding client Canary Wharf Group.
Within Planning, Linklaters LLP is a third tier firm,
Linklaters LLP advised Bloomberg on the development of its new headquarters in the City of London, on a site that contains the archaeological remains of a Roman temple and is surrounded by Grade I listed buildings. It also advised Henderson Global Investors on two development sites in London, including Smithfield Market Buildings, involving sensitive conservation issues. Department head David Watkins is ‘personable, diligent and commercially astute’.
Within Property finance, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP provides ‘an excellent overall level of service through the combination of diligent legal advice and commercial guidance’. The team advised on a number of high-profile restructurings, including those relating to Southern Cross, Battersea Power Station and the More London Estate, the latter valued at £1.2bn. It also advised M&G on a £400m loan portfolio acquisition. Steve Smith, who now heads the team following Claire Watson’s departure to Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP, is ‘committed to getting the deal done and helping the client achieve the best result’.
Within Property litigation, Linklaters LLP is a third tier firm,
Linklaters LLP’s small but ‘highly professional’ team provides ‘a first-rate service’ to developers, corporate occupiers and insolvency practitioners. Katie Bradford, an ‘exceptional’ adviser and accomplished litigator, advised Land Securities on rights of light issues relating to three developments in London, and also assisted Farton Holdings in a lease renewal dispute.
London: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)
Within Data protection, Linklaters LLP is a second tier firm,
Linklaters LLP provides ‘practical, business-focused advice’, and is recommended for ‘big-ticket’ matters. Recent work includes advising on cross-border compliance projects and personal data transfer matters, and it also assisted News International in the phone-hacking investigation. Richard Cumbley has particular expertise in information governance issues, and ‘delivers a balanced risk assessment, makes law interesting and is knowledgeable – he just “gets it”’.
Within Intellectual property, Linklaters LLP is a third tier firm,
Linklaters LLP handles transactional and contentious IP matters, with clients including Shire Pharmaceuticals, RBS, Sanrio and Visa Europe. Practice head Ian Karet is ‘very sharp and very clever, but also a very good listener’, and recently advised Intel on patent matters, as well as acting for William Hill in an appeal concerning an online trade mark dispute with 32Red. Benedict Bird focuses on trade mark matters, and Nigel Jones handles patent litigation and commercial work for the healthcare sector.
Within IT and telecoms, Linklaters LLP is a second tier firm,
Linklaters LLP is ‘able to provide sensible, pragmatic advice with a view to getting the deal done’, with particular strength in high-value, cross-border transactions. Highlights included advising Vodafone on the sale of its share in mobile phone operator SFR to Vivendi. The team includes global head of TMT and IP John Crozier; Julian Cunningham-Day, who is recommended for outsourcing and procurement matters and is ‘solutions driven and consistently delivers a high-calibre service to clients, with a strong commercial focus’; and Richard Cumbley, who recently advised PwC on regulatory and contractual IT matters.
Within Media and entertainment, Linklaters LLP is a third tier firm,
Linklaters LLP works closely with global media clients on multi-jurisdictional matters, recently representing Japanese company Sanrio, creator of Hello Kitty, on its £25m acquisition of Mr. Men Limited. Other work included advising News Corporation’s independent Management and Standards Committee, chaired by Lord Grabiner, on investigations and inquiries into the News of the World phone-hacking case. The team advised Viacom on the novation of contracts with Chorion for two TV series based on the Beatrix Potter books. Roger Barron heads the team, which also includes Marly Didizian.
Within Media finance, Linklaters LLP is a second tier firm,
At Linklaters LLP, Marly Didizian and practice head Roger Barron advise international media clients, including recently representing RTL in cross-border negotiations in India and Russia, and advising Viacom on the novation of its contracts with Chorion regarding two TV series based on Beatrix Potter books.
Within Pharmaceuticals and biotechnology, Linklaters LLP is a second tier firm,
Linklaters LLP focuses on cross-border transactional and patent litigation matters, with recent highlights including acting for Actavis on its takeover by Watson Pharmaceuticals. Nigel Jones defended Johnson & Johnson in a patent dispute regarding its arthritis drug Simponi. Other clients include Sanofi, Fresenius and Shire.
Within Rail, Linklaters LLP is a first tier firm,
Linklaters LLP is ‘pre-eminent in energy and infrastructure matters related to the rail sector’. It advised the sponsors on the procurement and £1.6bn financing of a new fleet of 115 trains to operate on the upgraded Thameslink network, and continues to advise Borealis Infrastructure and Ontario Teachers Pension Plan on matters relating to their £2.1bn purchase of the Channel Tunnel Rail Link. Key individuals include the ‘outstanding’ Fiona Hobbs, who provides ‘clear, tactical and strategic advice that is delivered sympathetically’; the ‘experienced’ Charlotte Morgan; the ‘knowledgeable’ Ian Andrews; and the ‘first-rate’ Stuart Rowson.
Further information on Linklaters LLP
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Offices in Madrid
Offices in Paris
Offices in Hong Kong
Latin America: International firms
Offices in Tokyo
- Corporate and commercial : Commercial contracts
- Corporate and commercial : Corporate tax
- Corporate and commercial : EU and competition
- Corporate and commercial : Equity capital markets: UK capability
- Corporate and commercial : Equity capital markets: US capability
- Corporate and commercial : Financial services
- Corporate and commercial : M&A: premium deals, £250m+
- Corporate and commercial : M&A: mid-market, £50m-£250m
- Corporate and commercial : M&A: smaller deals, up to £50m
- Corporate and commercial : Private equity: transactions
- Corporate and commercial : VAT and indirect tax
- Crime, fraud and licensing : Fraud: civil
- Crime, fraud and licensing : Fraud: corporate crime
- Crime, fraud and licensing : Fraud: white-collar crime
- Dispute resolution : Banking litigation: investment and retail
- Dispute resolution : Commercial litigation
- Dispute resolution : International arbitration
- Dispute resolution : Mediators
- Dispute resolution : Tax litigation
- Finance : Acquisition finance
- Finance : Asset finance and leasing
- Finance : Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans
- Finance : Commodities: derivatives
- Finance : Commodities: physicals
- Finance : Corporate restructuring and insolvency
- Finance : Debt capital markets
- Finance : Derivatives and structured products
- Finance : Emerging markets
- Finance : High yield
- Finance : Investment funds
- Finance : Islamic finance
- Finance : Securitisation
- Finance : Trade finance
- Human resources : Employee share schemes
- Human resources : Employment: employers and senior executives
- Human resources : Employment: employees/unions
- Human resources : Pensions
- Insurance : Insurance: corporate and regulatory
- Insurance : Professional negligence
- Private client : Personal tax, trusts and probate
- Projects, energy and natural resources : Infrastructure
- Projects, energy and natural resources : Mining and minerals
- Projects, energy and natural resources : Oil and gas
- Projects, energy and natural resources : Power (including electricity, nuclear and renewables)
- Projects, energy and natural resources : PFI and PPP
- Projects, energy and natural resources : Water
- Real estate : Commercial property
- Real estate : Construction
- Real estate : Environment
- Real estate : Planning
- Real estate : Property finance
- Real estate : Property litigation
- TMT (technology, media and telecoms) : Data protection
- TMT (technology, media and telecoms) : IT and telecoms
- TMT (technology, media and telecoms) : Intellectual property
- TMT (technology, media and telecoms) : Media and entertainment
- TMT (technology, media and telecoms) : Media finance
- TMT (technology, media and telecoms) : Pharmaceuticals and biotechnology
- Transport : Rail
Offices in Luxembourg
Offices in Amsterdam
Offices in Warsaw
Offices in Lisbon
Offices in Moscow
Offices in Stockholm
Offices in Singapore
Offices in Bangkok
- Finance : Corporate restructuring (including bankruptcy)
- Investment fund formation and management : Private equity funds
- Litigation : White-collar criminal defense
- Mergers, acquisitions and buyouts : Antitrust
- Mergers, acquisitions and buyouts : M&A: middle-market ($500m-999m)
- Tax : International tax