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Slaughter and May

ONE BUNHILL ROW, LONDON, EC1Y 8YY, ENGLAND
Tel:
Work 020 7600 1200
Fax:
Fax 020 7090 5000
DX:
11 LONDON CHANCERY LANE WC2
Web:
www.slaughterandmay.com
Beijing, Brussels, Hong Kong, London

Top-tier Firm rankings

Firm Rankings


London: Corporate and commercial

Commercial contracts
Commercial contracts - ranked: tier 2

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May is recommended for cutting-edge, strategically complex UK and cross-border outsourcing projects (where it acts for suppliers and customers), as well as other high-value business-critical matters. Rob Sumroy leads the team, which is particularly skilled in handling matters at the intersection of business transformation and digital technology, and the impact of robotics and artificial intelligence on BPOs. Sumroy, newly promoted partner Duncan Blaikie and others are assisting Ericsson with delivering a three-year IT transformation-and-build programme for VimpelCom across 12 jurisdictions in Europe and Asia. In another highlight, the firm is assisting Tottenham Hotspur Football Club with all commercial contract issues associated with the development of its new stadium, including the procurement of technology and telecommunications infrastructure, and procurement of catering services. David Ives has wide-ranging experience spanning technology and telecoms outsourcing, BPO, retail distribution arrangements and licensing agreements, among other areas. Rebecca Cousin, Isabel Taylor, Lisa Wright and senior associate Hardip Shokar are other names to note, as is recently promoted partner Victoria MacDuff. Efstathios Michael is experienced in technology and outsourcing disputes.

Leading individuals

Rob Sumroy - Slaughter and May

Next generation lawyers

Duncan Blaikie - Slaughter and May

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Corporate tax
Corporate tax - ranked: tier 1

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May’s tax group is regularly involved in some of the most prominent corporate deals in the London market and has also seen a steady increase in the amount of tax advisory work undertaken in 2016-2017. In one particularly stand-out matter, Mike Lane advised Equinix on the tax aspects of the acquisition of Telecity Group, and most importantly, on the separation and sale of eight of the target’s assets, which was a condition for obtaining clearance for the acquisition from the European Commission. Dominic Robertson acted for GlaxoSmithKline in relation to its joint venture with Verily Life Sciences and developed the tax relief strategy associated with the joint venture agreement. Other notable highlights include Steve Edge’s work for Vodafone Group in connection with the merger of its Dutch operations with Liberty Global, and Tony Beare assisting DONG Energy with the UK tax aspects of a 50% disposal of interest in the Race Bank offshore wind farm. Department head Sara Luder handles both transactional tax matters and tax advisory work, while William Watson has extensive experience of the real estate and oil and gas sectors. Jeanette Zaman and Gareth Miles are also contacts in the department.

Leading individuals

Mike Lane - Slaughter and May

Sara Luder - Slaughter and May

Steve Edge - Slaughter and May

Tony Beare - Slaughter and May

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EU and competition
EU and competition - ranked: tier 1

Slaughter and May

The ‘constructive’ and ‘deeply knowledgeablePhilippe Chappatte leads the ‘first-class’ and ‘very dedicated’ team at Slaughter and May, which provides an ‘impeccable service’ and acts for clients such as Asda Walmart, British Airways, Bupa, Deutsche Bank, Vodafone, and INEOS. Claire Jeffs and Lisa Wright led the team advising Google in relation to ongoing Article 102 investigations by the European Commission into search and advertising, which concerns Google’s AdSense advertising service. Isabel Taylor advised Bupa in relation to the CMA’s market investigation into the provision of private healthcare in the UK, and Bertrand Louveaux (‘very astute’, ‘extremely passionate on behalf of his clients’) advised Nationwide in relation to the CMA’s retail banking market investigation. Chappatte led the team advising VocaLink and its shareholders on its proposed acquisition by Mastercard. Special adviser Jackie Holland advised the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy on the state aid investigation of an investment contract granted to Drax Power Limited, and succeeded in securing unconditional clearance from the European Commission at phase II. The practice features a number of ‘high-calibre’ associates, including Jantira Raftery (who is praised for her ‘keen intellect’ and ‘direct and determined’ approach).

Leading individuals

Bertrand Louveaux - Slaughter and May

Claire Jeffs - Slaughter and May

Isabel Taylor - Slaughter and May

Philippe Chappatte - Slaughter and May

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Equity capital markets
Equity capital markets - ranked: tier 2

Slaughter and May

Impressive at every level of the organisation’, Slaughter and May acts for a litany of listed companies and consequently has one of the most well-known issuer-side equity capital markets practices in the London market. In one of the firm’s largest IPO deals of 2016, corporate department head Andy Ryde advised GE Capital International Holdings and MONETA Money Bank in connection with the listing of CZK 34.75bn of MONETA’s shares, which was the largest IPO in the Czech Republic in almost a decade. John Papanichola, who has ‘excellent technical and market knowledge’, acted for Centrica on the placing of 350 million ordinary shares, which raised £700m, He also assisted esure Group and Gocompare.com Group with their demerger, also advising the latter on its premium listing on the main market of the LSE. Practice head Nilufer von Bismarck, Susannah Macknay and David Johnson are key contacts. Other notable clients include SEGRO and Ensco.

Leading individuals

Nilufer von Bismarck - Slaughter and May

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

Slaughter and May

Financial services (non-contentious/regulatory) - ranked: tier 2

Slaughter and May

Benefiting from an ‘excellent depth of content knowledge’, Slaughter and May is well-placed to represent a broad ranging array of financial services clients including advising non-regulated businesses on the impact of financial services regulation. The team has provided the regulatory input on the sell-side of numerous financial services M&A transactions; Ben Kingsley provided the regulatory advice to Värde Partners on the sale of leading consumer finance provider, NewDay, to Cinven and CVC Capital Partners. Kingsley also has a burgeoning reputation in the fast moving Fintech space. ‘Exceptionally knowledgeable’ team head Jan Putnis is praised for his ‘ability to think through and round complex scenarios’, and alongside newly promoted partner Nick Bonsall, has been representing two UK banks on their structural reform programme including advice on ring fencing and recovery and resolution planning. On the contentious front, Ewan Brown remains active in relation to market manipulation matters and as well as representing JPMorgan in FX regulatory and government investigations, is also a key partner involved in the firm’s work for Deutsche Bank in its LIBOR regulatory investigations. Praised for his ability to ‘add value’ by virtue of his willingness to ‘explore all relevant different angles’, Jonathan Clark recently secured a notable success at both first instance and on appeal for Banco Santander Totta in persuading the courts to use English law to govern the dispute regarding interest rate swap litigation. Deborah Finkler is also recommended.

Leading individuals

Jan Putnis - Slaughter and May

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

Andy Ryde - Slaughter and May

Nigel Boardman - Slaughter and May

Roland Turnill - Slaughter and May

Steve Cooke - Slaughter and May

William Underhill - Slaughter and May

Next generation lawyers

Chris McGaffin - Slaughter and May

Robert Innes - Slaughter and May

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

Andy Ryde - Slaughter and May

Nigel Boardman - Slaughter and May

Roland Turnill - Slaughter and May

Steve Cooke - Slaughter and May

William Underhill - Slaughter and May

Next generation lawyers

Chris McGaffin - Slaughter and May

Robert Innes - Slaughter and May

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M&A: upper mid-market and premium deals, £250m+
M&A: upper mid-market and premium deals, £250m+ - ranked: tier 1

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May fields a team of ‘technical experts’ that provides ‘value for money’, ‘great industry knowledge’ and ‘detailed reasoning where necessary’. Praised for its ‘terrific strength in depth’, the ‘proactive, reliable’ practice ‘makes molehills out of mountains’, ‘handling complex matters’ in a wide variety of sectors. Many of the practice’s largest matters in 2016 were in the TMT space: Steve Cooke advised ARM Holdings on its £24.3bn purchase by SoftBank Group, which was the largest-ever acquisition of a European technology company, while Andrew Jolly assisted Cable & Wireless Communications with its £3.6bn purchase by Liberty Global. The practice also handled a significant TMT demerger, with John Papanichola advising esure Group and Gocompare.com Group on the latter’s spin-off from the former. Other TMT clients include Vodafone and Reliance Communications. In the biotech space, Martin Hattrell advised Shire on its $32bn merger with Baxalta. In another high-profile mandate, Gary Eaborn assisted Tata Steel with various sales of its UK operations, including the sale of its Clydebridge and Dalzell steel facilities to the Scottish government, and the sale of its subsidiary Longs Steel UK to Greybull Capital. He also acted for Dätwyler on its £615m takeover offer for Premier Farnell. The ‘calm, experiencedRoland Turnill is ‘highly intelligent, and works well with other advisers and client teams’; he heads the practice with Andy Ryde. William Underhill, Tim Boxell, Craig Cleaver, the ‘excellentVictoria MacDuff (who made partner in May 2016) and senior statesman Nigel Boardman are also recommended. Murray Cox and Paul Mudie also made partner in May 2016.

Leading individuals

Andy Ryde - Slaughter and May

Nigel Boardman - Slaughter and May

Roland Turnill - Slaughter and May

Steve Cooke - Slaughter and May

William Underhill - Slaughter and May

Next generation lawyers

Chris McGaffin - Slaughter and May

Robert Innes - Slaughter and May

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Partnership
Partnership - ranked: tier 3

Slaughter and May

The team at Slaughter and May has considerable expertise in partnership structures as they relate to investment vehicles, joint ventures and pension funding. Department head Paul Dickson advises John Lewis in relation to a litany of ongoing issues regarding the Scottish Partnership and Scottish Limited Partnership established in connection with the client’s pension funding structure. Similarly, he acted for the trustees of Severn Trent Pension Schemes in connection with its new asset-backed pension funding partnership. Corporate and asset management specialist Robin Ogle is advising HM Treasury in relation to its role as limited partner in the newly established Digital Infrastructure Investment Fund. Paul Mudie was promoted to partner in 2016. Other notable clients have included Marks & Spencer, Deloitte and KPMG.

Leading individuals

Paul Dickson - Slaughter and May

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

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May covers all facets of private equity transactions for corporates, private equity houses and management teams. Robin Ogle was the lead adviser to SVG Capital on a proposed hostile takeover by HarbourVest Structured Solutions III, a matter which was resolved when SVG agreed to sell its investment portfolio for £806m. Elsewhere, Susannah Macknay led the advice to Värde Partners on its sale of NewDay to Cinven and CVC Capital Partners. In 2016, Mark Horton, Murray Cox and others assisted Global Infrastructure Partners with the £2bn disposal of London City Airport to a funds consortium, which included AIMCo and OMERS, among others. Jeff Twentyman is the head of the private equity group.

Leading individuals

Jeff Twentyman - Slaughter and May

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London: Crime, fraud and licensing

Fraud: civil
Fraud: civil - ranked: tier 3

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May is ‘consistently superb in major, high-pressure cases’ and ‘always remains calm and works hard to ensure that everything is resolved to perfection’. The team receives a strong flow of mandates from a broad range of business sectors, advising on investigations, litigation and arbitration in the context of civil fraud. Highlights included advising Barratt Development in civil proceedings against defendant company Top Construction Services, a matter involving bribery allegations and a Metropolitan Police Service investigation. The ‘smart and experiencedDeborah Finkler heads the team; Jonathan Cotton is ‘particularly strong in money laundering and financial crime work’; and Efstathios Michael is ‘always on top of every detail’.

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London: Dispute resolution

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

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May is ‘absolutely outstanding, from the beginning until the end of any complex case, performing at the highest possible level on all matters’. The practice is highly rated for its expertise in complex, high-value, multi-jurisdictional disputes; these frequently involve complex structured products and financial derivative instruments, major insolvency-related litigation, disputes that raise corporate crime issues, and global regulatory investigations. The team successfully acted for Banco Santander Totta at The Court of Appeal in claims against publicly owned Portuguese companies, which arose from interest rate swaps; it also assisted National Bank of Abu Dhabi with its claim against BP Oil International for the return of approximately $70m under a receivables financing agreement; this was an important test case as it was the first to proceed from start to finish under the shorter and flexible trials pilot scheme. Deborah Finkler heads the firm’s dispute resolution group; Jonathan Clark and recently promoted partner Richard Jeensdisplay formidable co-ordination skills, especially in multi-disciplinary teams, and have profound knowledge of the applicable rules and perfect sense of strategy and client care’; James Staceyprovides great direction and motivation, while also being willing to get stuck in to the hard work himself’; and Damian Taylor, who ‘has a brilliant legal mind and is very good with clients’, was also made partner. Richard Swallow and Ewan Brown are other highly respected advisers. Elizabeth Barrett retired from the practice.

Leading individuals

Deborah Finkler - Slaughter and May

Ewan Brown - Slaughter and May

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Commercial litigation
Commercial litigation - ranked: tier 1

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May’s ‘lawyers are all outcome oriented and deliver extraordinary service and results’. The practice is best known for high-stakes litigation and it has recently been involved in high-profile, multi-jurisdictional matters. The team acted for Banco Santander Totta in litigation in England, which arose out of interest rate swaps with publicly owned Portuguese companies; this was the first case to be tried in the Financial List. Other highlights saw the team act for National Bank of Abu Dhabi, one of the largest banks in the Middle East, in its claim against British Petroleum Oil International for the return of approximately $70m under a receivables financing agreement; this case was particularly significant as it was the first to proceed from start to finish under the shorter and flexible trials pilot scheme. Deborah Finkler heads the dispute resolution group. Recently promoted partner Richard Jeensprovides constant assurance to clients, explore all relevant different angles and add value to matters’; Sarah Lee is ‘capable and assured’; Richard Swallow is ‘very impressive’; Efstathios Michaelhas total mastery of the detail’; and Jonathan Cotton is ‘very strong on cases with a financial crime or regulatory angle’. Other recommended litigators are Ewan Brown, James Stacey, Jonathan Clark, and Damian Taylor, who was also made partner. Elizabeth Barrett retired from the practice.

Leading individuals

Deborah Finkler - Slaughter and May

Sarah Lee - Slaughter and May

Next generation lawyers

Damian Taylor - Slaughter and May

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Competition litigation
Competition litigation - ranked: tier 1

Slaughter and May

In one way or another, Slaughter and May is involved in nearly every one of the most well-known contentious competition cases in the market and is, by the measure of some, ‘the premier firm providing EU and UK competition litigation’. Department head Richard Swallow is ‘significantly experienced in this area’ and acted for Koninklijke Philips in a €1bn damages claims brought in the English High Court by iiyama, which has gone to the Court of Appeal. Indeed, the team has acted in defence of a number of very high-profile cartel claims, an example of which is the air cargo cartel case, in which Swallow has also continued to represent British Airways; the case is currently on appeal to the European Court of Justice. Additionally, Isabel Taylor and Deborah Finkler are advising American Express Services Europe on the UK judicial review proceedings seeking to clarify the EU’s Interchange Fees Regulation. The team also manages to make use of a global network of best friend relationships, and is acting alongside Gleiss Lutz in an investigation into Booking.com’s most favoured nation clause. In 2016, Damian Taylor and Richard Jeens were made partners, while Elizabeth Barrett retired.

Leading individuals

Richard Swallow - Slaughter and May

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International arbitration
International arbitration - ranked: tier 4

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May is ‘first rate for international arbitration’. The practice frequently acts in high-value energy, infrastructure, corporate and financing disputes, and it has cross-border capabilities both inside and outside Europe. James Stacey leads the firm’s arbitration group and is ‘excellent and hugely able - he is a details-man, who gives very thoughtful and considered advice that is practical and commercial, as well as legally spot-on’. Damian Taylor was made partner and dispute resolution head Deborah Finkler and Efstathios Michael are key contacts.

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

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May’s contentious tax practice works in parallel with the firm’s top-ranked non-contentious tax team to advise clients, irrespective of sector, from the early stages of a tax investigation through to appeals. Steve Edge recently represented Deutsche Bank in the Supreme Court in a case concerning the turning of cash bonuses into a non-monetary form, which could later be turned into money. Sarah Lee helps lead the contentious tax offering and is acting for Mercuria Energy Europe in a High Court case concerning its involvement in highly publicised "missing trader" VAT fraud in the carbon emissions market. Hays, GDF Suez Teesside and Bupa are other clients. Dominic Robertson and Mike Lane have each developed an active tax disputes practice and have been involved in a number of politically-sensitive tax investigations. Gareth Miles and William Watson are also key contacts. In 2016, Richard Jeens and Damian Taylor became partners in the disputes team and Elizabeth Barrett retired.

Leading individuals

Sarah Lee - Slaughter and May

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London: Finance

Acquisition finance
Acquisition finance - ranked: tier 4

Slaughter and May

Complementing its market-leading M&A practice, which acts for a sizeable number of FTSE 100 corporates from a range of industries, Slaughter and May’s banking team is regularly involved in public acquisition financings at the highest end of the market. Ian Johnson advised Ladbrokes on the £1.35bn combined term loan and revolving credit facilities pursuant to its merger with Gala Coral Group. Ed Fife handles acquisition finance work as part of his broad-ranging finance capability; he recently advised Swiss-based Datwyler Holding on the English law financing aspects associated with its recommended cash offer for Premier Farnell. Robert Byk acted for Lonza on debt and equity financing provisions to facilitate its $5.5bn acquisition of Capsugel from KKR. Team head Philip Snell and Matthew Tobin are also recommended.

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Asset finance and leasing
Asset finance and leasing - ranked: tier 6

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May has numerous individuals within the firm’s broader finance offering with significant experience across a range of cross-border matters for clients including Rolls-Royce and British Airways. Recent highlights include advising Orient Overseas on two TEU container ship financings. Andrew Johnson is regularly involved in the firm’s most significant asset finance matters including acting for private equity firm First Reserve on its majority acquisition in PV Keez Pte – a single purpose company which owns a floating production, storage and offloading vessel – and on the entry into an asset financing facility by PV Keez with a syndicate of lenders for the refinancing of PV Keez’s existing debt facility.

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Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans
Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans - ranked: tier 2

Slaughter and May

Drawing on the firm’s extensive roster of FTSE 100 corporate clients, including Whitbread, Shire and Rolls Royce, Slaughter and May provides ‘responsive, thoughtful and sensible advice’ across the spectrum of financings including for acquisition finance, as well as general corporate and working capital purposes. The team’s reputation in the space is also underscored by its continued work with the Association of Corporate Treasurers on LMA documentation. The ‘extremely bright, hardworking and practicalEd Fife advised Hibu Group on its successful refinancing and reorganisation of Hibu’s capital structure. Other highlights included Caroline Phillips’ work, alongside a high-profile US firm, on behalf of INOVYN ChlorVinyls on the raising of €775m of term loans and its offering of €300m senior secured notes. Stephen Powell, Andrew McClean and Richard Jones are also recommended.

Leading individuals

Andrew McClean - Slaughter and May

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

Slaughter and May

Although it has a smaller, discrete standalone restructuring team than many of the firms in the ranking, Slaughter and May’s cross-departmental approach ensures that is able to provide an ‘excellent business oriented service’ to clients across a range of domestic and cross-border restructurings and insolvencies. Leveraging the firm’s top-notch roster of corporate clients, as well as receiving standalone instructions, the team has a particular focus advising on debtor mandates - where it is able to add value by dint of numerous complementary practice areas including corporate, finance and tax. The team has been involved in numerous energy-related matters of late including advising Premier Oil plc (led by Thomas Vickers and Philip Snell) on the restructuring of its $4bn of debt and acting for Seadrill on the negotiation and implementation of a comprehensive refinancing and restructuring plan. Noted for its expertise in politically sensitive scenarios, a cross-departmental team represented Tata Steel on the restructuring of its European business – work which has included asset disposals, contingency planning and negotiations with a range of stakeholders. Team head Ian Johnson and Richard de Carle are also recommended.

Next generation lawyers

Thomas Vickers - Slaughter and May

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Debt capital markets
Debt capital markets - ranked: tier 2

Slaughter and May

At Slaughter and May, ‘the lawyers are knowledgeable and client-focused, always respond on time and definitely provide value for money’. The firm’s primary focus is on borrower mandates, though its advice to banks on structured bond deals is growing. For example, it is advisingWestpac on the annual update of its EMTN and covered bond programmes, and it acted for Standard Chartered on numerous debt issues including a $1bn offering of senior notes. The firm’s multi-disciplinary finance partners cover a broad range of capital markets, structured finance and securitisation transactions. Matthew Tobin, who heads the DCM practice, took the lead on the Westpac deals. Guy O’Keefe advises issuers, borrowers, lenders and counterparties on liability management transactions. He acted for Arrow Global Group on a £220m offering. Ed Fife’s recent highlights include advising Remgro on a £350m placement of senior secured notes, which was the first exchangeable bond issued by a South African company. Caroline Phillips’s work in the debt space includes regulatory capital deals; she regularly acts for insurers and advised Aviva on issuance with a total value of €850m. She also handled a debut bond for Ladbrokes Coral Group. Oliver Wicker and Oliver Storey were both promoted to partner. Miranda Leung retired. The firm has ‘a very good team even below partner level’, with clients singling out associate Louis de Ste Croix.

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

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May’s team advises on standalone derivatives transactions including the full range of interest rate, forex, equity, bond, index-linked, inflation, energy, commodity and longevity products as well as total return swaps, repos and stock loans. Many of its deals involve equity derivatives, including total return swaps in relation to equity securities. The majority of its work, however, is in the context of large securitisations. Senior structured finance partner Sanjev Warna-kula-suriya joined Latham & Watkins, so the key partner in the team is now Guy O’Keefe, who mainly handles securitisation but whose practice includes a broader palette of structured finance matters. Newly promoted Oliver Wicker who is ‘extremely bright and easy to work with’, plays a key role in advising clients on derivatives and structured finance transactions, many of which are driven by the deleveraging of banks in Europe. Ed Fife handles secured lending and derivatives transactions for leading investment banks and blue-chip corporate clients. Also recommended are Richard Jones and Azadeh Nassiri who, like all partners in the firm’s finance practice, cover a wide range of capital markets and structured finance transactions. The firm is best known for its buy-side practice advising corporates such as Marks &Spencer and United Utilities, but it is also active for banks including Nordea Bank and insurance companies such as Swiss Re.

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Securitisation
Securitisation - ranked: tier 3

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May has a multi-disciplinary approach that sees partners in the finance practice handle a broad range of deal types and asset classes including RMBS, CMBS, credit cards, trade receivables, auto loans, whole-business deals and CLOs. The team is also prominent in the covered bond market and continues to act for large hedge fund clients. Other areas of expertise include advising originators, arrangers and investors on new issuances and the restructuring of existing transactions. Guy O’Keefe leads the team and acts for borrowers, issuers and lenders on some of the firm’s most complex securitisation matters. Richard Jones’s practice covers securitisations, structured finance and derivatives. Newly promoted partner Oliver Wicker and finance partners Ed Fife and Azadeh Nassiri are also recommended. Jones advised originator Santander Consumer (UK) plc on a £600m UK auto loan ABS, while Wicker acted for Deutsche Bank on the exit of its subsidiary DB UK Bank from the Eurohome UK Mortgages 2007-1 and Eurohome UK Mortgages 2007-2 securitisations. O’Keefe’s highlights included acting for UK Asset Resolution on the sale of NRAM to Cerberus in a deal connected to the sale of £13bn in residential mortgages and unsecured loans that were part of the Granite master trust securitisation. Sanjev Warna-kula-suriya moved to Latham & Watkins.

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London: Human resources

Employee share schemes
Employee share schemes - ranked: tier 2

Slaughter and May

Excellent in all respects’, Slaughter and May’s team primarily advises on transactional matters, and has strong experience in restructuring and regulatory matters. Practice head Jonathan Fenn acted for Drax Group on the share options aspects of its £340m acquisition of Opus Energy Group; and was also instructed by Punch Taverns on the incentives aspects of its recommended £403m acquisition by Vine Acquisitions. Daniel Schaffer joined from Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, while Roland Doughty has retired.

Leading individuals

Jonathan Fenn - Slaughter and May

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Employment: employers and senior executives
Employment: employers - ranked: tier 5

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May’s pensions and employment practice is regularly called on to handle the employment aspects of corporate transactions, as well as board-level disputes and senior executive exits. Charles Cameron advised Tata Steel on all employment issues arising from the client’s reorganisation and subsequent disposal of its ‘longs’ steel business to Greybull Capital, including TUPE transfers of more than 5,000 employees. Cameron also advised Coca-Cola Enterprises on the employment aspects of its merger with Coca-Cola Iberian Partners and Coca-Cola Erfrischungsgetränke (CCEAG) to create Coca-Cola European Partners. Sandeep Maudgil acted for GSK on employment matters arising from a series of agreements with Aspen, including the divestment of GSK’s anaesthesia portfolio to Aspen. Other key figures include Jonathan Fenn, who heads the practice, and senior associate Lizzie Twigger. Uber, Shawbrook Bank and Westpac are also clients.

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

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May handles a broad range of non-contentious matters, with particular expertise in high-profile scheme closures and benefit changes. Practice head Jonathan Fenn has been advising Marks & Spencer in relation to the closure of its defined-benefit scheme, which has assets valued at approximately £9bn. Philip Bennett was instructed by the trustees of the ConocoPhillips Pension Plan in relation to benefit changes. Sandeep Maudgil assisted Premier Foods in funding negotiations regarding three defined-benefit schemes. The practice, which includes the well-regarded Charles Cameron, was strengthened by the arrival of Daniel Schaffer from Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, while Roland Doughty has retired.

Leading individuals

Charles Cameron - Slaughter and May

Daniel Schaffer - Slaughter and May

Philip Bennett - Slaughter and May

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London: Insurance

Insurance and reinsurance litigation
Insurance and reinsurance litigation - ranked: tier 4

Slaughter and May

A ‘formidable and fearsome opponent’, Slaughter and May’s Efstathios Michaelhas a truly first-class brain combined with absolutely excellent tactical and commercial skills’ in a broad range of matters, including brokers’ liability and coverage disputes. He is acting for Marsh in a breach of contract and professional negligence claim filed by the Bank of London and The Middle East. The practice, which sits in Deborah Finkler’s dispute resolution department, provides ‘excellent value’ and ‘outstanding’advice to its clients, which include SEB and Equitas. Damian Taylor’s promotion to partner was among recent personnel changes.

Leading individuals

Efstathios Michael - Slaughter and May

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Insurance: corporate and regulatory
Insurance: corporate and regulatory - ranked: tier 1

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May is active in the transactional and regulatory insurance space, and has had a notable focus on Solvency II-related advice over the last year. Highlights have included advising Aviva on the re-risking of the RAC Pension Scheme by way of a £600m longevity swap transaction, thus reinsuring the longevity risk of approximately 10k customers; acting for Royal Philips on the de-risking of its Philips UK Pension Fund via a £2.4bn transaction with Pension Insurance Corporation; and advising China Re on the global offering and listing of its shares on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Oliver Wareham heads the insurance group and has a vast range of expertise, advising on regulatory matters, portfolio transfers and capital management techniques. Jonathan Marks is particularly strong in the pensions space and has been involved in a number of re-risking transactions, and Craig Cleaver’s key clients include Standard Life, Old Mutual and Allianz.

Leading individuals

Oliver Wareham - Slaughter and May

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London: Investment fund formation and management

Listed funds
Listed funds - ranked: tier 3

Slaughter and May

At Slaughter and May, Robin Ogle advised SVG Capital on its sale of its investment portfolio to HarbourVest Structured Solutions for £807m. Nilufer von Bismarck advised LMS Capital on a change of investment policy and a tender offer which returned £6m to shareholders. In the capital raising space, Martin Hattrell advised 3i Group on 3i Infrastructure’s capital raising of up to £350m.

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London: Projects, energy and natural resources

Infrastructure (including PFI and PPP)
Infrastructure (including PFI and PPP) - ranked: tier 4

Slaughter and May

Under the leadership of corporate finance specialist Mark Horton, Slaughter and May primarily handles brownfield asset disposals, acquisitions and refinancing matters for clients in the transport and waste-water management sectors.

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Oil and gas
Oil and gas - ranked: tier 4

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May’s oil and gas offering is led by Hywel Davies and Steven Galbraith, and is particularly strong in corporate transactions and financing work. The team recently advised Wood Group on the $2.7bn financing in anticipation of its recommended all-share offer to acquire Amec Foster Wheeler, and acted for INEOS on its proposed takeover of DONG’s entire oil and gas business. Other noteworthy clients include the African Development Bank, Centrica and Maersk.

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Power (including electricity, nuclear and renewables)
Power (including electricity, nuclear and renewables) - ranked: tier 3

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May represents regulators, market operators and participants, and governments across the full spectrum of energy matters. Tim Pharoah and Paul Stacey – who was recently elected executive partner to replace Richard Clark, who retired from the firm in April 2017 – are key names in the power and renewables team, and oversaw advice to Centrica and DONG with regards to their disposal of 50% interest in the Lincs and Race Bank wind farms respectively. Drax, BIS and PowerSeraya are some of the other noteworthy names in the group’s enviable client roster.

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London: Real estate

Commercial property
Commercial property: development - ranked: tier 2

Slaughter and May

Commercial property: general - ranked: tier 3

Slaughter and May

Commercial property: hotels and leisure - ranked: tier 2

Slaughter and May

Commercial property: investment - ranked: tier 2

Slaughter and May

Commercial property: retail - ranked: tier 4

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May continues to receive a significant volume of instructions from key client Derwent London, with head of practice Jane Edwarde advising said client on the £68m sale of Tower House (10 Southampton Street) to Capital & Counties Properties, and also continuing to assist it with the office, theatre and retail development above the new Crossrail station at Tottenham Court Road. Edwarde was also active in the corporate sub-sector where she advised Midlothian Capital Partners and Hattington Capital on the real estate aspects of its £217m acquisition of Dobbies Garden Centres from Tesco Holdings. The other main contact is John Nevin, who, like Edwarde, was active on a range of investment and development mandates: as well as assisting Equinix with its $874m sale of eight European data centres to Digital Realty Trust, he also continued to act for Masterworks Development in connection with its proposals to redevelop 13-14 Appold Street, London. The practice acts predominantly on the landlord-side for retail work, while in the hotel-and-leisure sub-sector, it has experience in a range of real estate assets including football stadiums, public houses, and holiday home parks. Nevin represented Bourne Leisure on its acquisition of the Studley Castle Hotel in Warwickshire. Steven Edwards retired from the practice.

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Environment
Environment - ranked: tier 4

Slaughter and May

In 2016 Slaughter and May’s team was particularly busy advising on the environmental aspects of M&A stemming from the energy and infrastructure sectors; newly promoted senior counsel Samantha Brady advised Centrica on the £423m joint sale, with its 50% joint venture partner, of the Glens of Foudland, Lynn and Inner Dowsing wind farms to a consortium. It also acted for Global Infrastructure Partners on the sale of its 75% interest in London City Airport to a consortium comprising AIMCo, OMERS, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan and Wren House Infrastructure Management. The team was also busy on behalf of key client Tata Steel, advising said client on the sale of its wholly-owned subsidiary, Longs Steel UK Limited, to Greybull Capital. Richard Todd heads the practice.

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Planning
Planning - ranked: tier 5

Slaughter and May

At Slaughter and May, associate Richard Keczkes acts for clients such as Carillion and Derwent London, and the team remained active in its key areas of infrastructure projects, football stadia and urban developments. Keczkes’ recent work includes advising Arsenal Football Club on variations to the section 106 agreement governing developments surrounding the Emirates Stadium, and assisting Delancey with the planning strategy for its Queen’s Square mixed-use development in Croydon Town Centre. On the contentious side, Keczkes represented key client Legal & General in its objection to TfL’s Transport and Works Act application to extend the Gospel Oak to Barking over ground railway line to the Barking Riverside development.

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London: Risk advisory

Regulatory investigations and corporate crime
Regulatory investigations and corporate crime - ranked: tier 1

Slaughter and May

The team at Slaughter and May has ‘the strength and depth of talent to undertake incredibly complex, wide-scale multi-jurisdictional investigations’, and ‘exhibits excellent strategic judgement’. Highlights included acting for Rolls-Royce in investigations conducted by the SFO, the US Department of Justice and the Brazilian Ministério Público Federal concerning alleged bribes paid to Chinese and Indonesian advisers, a matter which was resolved by way of a Deferred Prosecution Agreement. The team also represented British American Tobacco in an internal investigation into allegations of bribery and corruption within its Africa-based businesses. Practice head Deborah Finkler is recommended along with Jonathan Cotton, who ‘sees straight to the heart of the problem and identifies solutions with consummate ease and professionalism’, and Richard Swallow, who ‘confronts challenging legal issues head-on’.

Leading individuals

Jonathan Cotton - Slaughter and May

Richard Swallow - Slaughter and May

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London: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

Fintech
Fintech - ranked: tier 1

Slaughter and May

The ‘really supportive, knowledgeable’ team at Slaughter and May provides ‘superb service’ with ‘very quick response times’, and is ‘willing and able to involve lawyers from other practice areas to address matters holistically’. Particular areas of activity are blockchain, payments and data analytics; the team also has experience advising on "deep learning" artificial intelligence technology. Its clients include major banks, well-established fintech companies and start-ups. Ben Kingsley has a ‘huge depth of experience in financial services matters’ and is a ‘very safe pair of hands’; he jointly heads the department with technology, outsourcing and data expert Rob Sumroy. Kingsley advised Euroclear on the potential implementation of blockchain technology in the settlement and clearing industry, including Euroclear’s avoidance of disintermediation by the new technology. The team also acts for fintech start-ups: Kingsley and Sumroy advised DPactum on its partnership with several major London-based financial institutions to develop a blockchain-dependent derivatives clearing and collateral management platform. This involved advice on investment, technology licences, IP and contracts. Enforcd instructed Kingsley, Sumroy and ‘unflappable, straightforward and humorous’ corporate partner Sally Wokes on its corporate capital and management structure, the protection of its fintech IP, and agreements with customers. The team also handles complex corporate work: Kingsley, Sumroy and data protection and privacy specialist Rebecca Cousin advised VocaLink on its divestment of the LINK Scheme – the network that connects the UK’s cash machines – and the renegotiation of its processing contract with the LINK Scheme. Other clients include Stripe, Standard Chartered, Tide and, in the insurtech space, Open GI.

Leading individuals

Ben Kingsley - Slaughter and May

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IT and telecoms
IT and telecoms - ranked: tier 2

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May’s ‘excellent’ and ‘very commercial’ team acts for clients including Ericsson and CSR. Rob Sumroy heads the technology and outsourcing team, and has core strengths in the fintech sector. He recently advised Ericsson on its recent digital transformation deal with VimpelCom, and assisted DPactum with a project that involves smart contracts utilising block chain technology. David Ives, who is an expert in fintech, digital, data, outsourcing and software matters, advised Carillion on its contract with Wipro concerning a facilities management IT solution. Cathy Connolly handles licensing arrangements and IT-focused transactions; Roland Turnill, who heads the telecoms practice, has expertise in public takeovers, private acquisitions and disposals; and competition practice head Philippe Chappatte handles the competition aspects of telecoms disputes.

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Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 4

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May’s practice handles contentious and non-contentious IP issues. Highlights included advising GlaxoSmithKline on Galvani Bioelectronics, a joint venture with Verily Life Sciences (formerly Google Life Sciences), for the research and development of bioelectronic medicines, and assisting Acetlion with Johnson & Johnson’s offer to acquire the company. David Ives heads the practice and has particular expertise in commercial IP arrangements. Head of non-contentious IP Cathy Connolly acts for clients including Virgin, Rolls-Royce and Ineos. Susie Middlemiss, who also heads the firm’s contentious IP offering, is noted for her patent and technology expertise, and for handling IP litigation. Rob Sumroy is a key name for advising on major technology and telecoms integration agreements.

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Pharmaceuticals and biotechnology
Pharmaceuticals and biotechnology - ranked: tier 3

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May’s transaction-led practice is supported by substantial contentious capability and is praised for its ‘deep expertise and responsiveness’. On the M&A front, David Johnson and Simon Nicholls led a team, which included IP and antitrust specialists, advising Actelion on a $30bn takeover by Johnson & Johnson; Martin Hattrell assisted Shire with its combination with Baxalta; and Nilufer von Bismarck advised GE Healthcare on the acquisition of Biosafe Group. Johnson is ‘a great business negotiator’ with ‘unparalleled expertise in constructing joint ventures’, and IP litigator Susie Middlemiss is ‘outstanding for her depth of knowledge, tactics and acute commercial understanding of the implications of a case’. ‘Bright and very hardworking’ associates Anthony Doolittle and Claire Jackson are also recommended.

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Sport
Sport - ranked: tier 4

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May assists sports clients with a very wide range of work, including disputes, IP, commercial contracts, governance, investments and real estate. Practice head Andrew Jolly is especially strong in football, and advises Premier League clubs including Arsenal FC and Everton FC on commercial, disciplinary, governance and regulatory matters. David Ives acted for the Boat Race Company on all its IP and sponsorship matters, and assisted it with all legal issues concerning the staging of the annual Oxford and Cambridge boat race. The US Ski and Snowboard Association is another client. Damian Taylor is recommended for dispute resolution, and has particular experience in football and motorsport.

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London: Transport

Aviation
Aviation - ranked: tier 3

Slaughter and May

Slaughter and May’s multi-disciplinary aviation team handles regulatory, litigation, and real estate matters in the sector. It advised Gatwick Airport on the strategic case for a new runway at the airport and is acting for British Airways in multi-party litigation following air cargo cartel investigations worldwide. Efstathios Michael handles contentious aviation matters, while Anna Lyle-Smythe and Bertrand Louveaux advise on merger control issues.

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