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Bird & Bird LLP

12 NEW FETTER LANE, LONDON, EC4A 1JP, ENGLAND
Tel:
Work 020 7415 6000
Fax:
Fax 020 7415 6111
DX:
119 LONDON CHANCERY LANE
Email:
Web:
www.twobirds.com

London: Corporate and commercial

Commercial contracts
Commercial contracts - ranked: tier 1

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP has particular expertise in technology contracts involving blockchain and AI. The international firm is also experienced in collaborative ventures with a cross-border element. Simon Shooter leads the practice and acted for EY on the establishment of a joint venture with Guardtime, one of the world's leading blockchain solutions companies, which impacts the $30bn global marine hull insurance industry. Also notable in the team are Mark Leach, who is an expert in the fields of outsourcing and major commercial projects; Lucy England, who is experienced in advice on both strategic business projects and routine commercial agreements for a range of clients, including airlines, leasing companies and original equipment manufacturers; and infrastructure sector specialist Stuart Cairns. Associate Elizabeth Dunn is recommended for her commercial work in the gambling and sports sectors.

Practice head(s):Simon Shooter

Other key lawyers:Mark Leach; Elizabeth Dunn; Lucy England; Stuart Cairns

Testimonials

'The team is at the cutting edge of IT law'

Key Clients

Isavia

easyJet

Costa

Migeca – Ca'puccino

Gamesys

Sky Bet

eZono AG

Black Sheep Coffee

Chevron

KFC

Stagecoach

HBO

Steve Angello/Size Records

Parity

Motorola Solutions UK Limited

EE Limited

Six Nations

Arsenal FC

Orlen

Work highlights

  • Acting as easyJet's trusted legal adviser and advising on a range of matters across a number of disciplines, from commercial contracts to consumer and competition law issues, as well as data protection.

  • Assisting eZono on a number of alliance and collaboration agreements with international partners for the licensing and integration of its guiding procedural ultrasound technology into partner products.
  • Advising Gamesys on its relationships with various game providers, including NetEnt and Scientific.
  • Advised Sky Bet, one of the leading sports betting brands in the UK, on the five-year renewal of its headline naming rights sponsorship agreement with the English Football League.
  • Advising HBO on its licensing and consultancy agreements in relation to the creation and production of a "Game of Thrones" studio tour and park.
Leading individuals

Mark Leach - Bird & Bird LLP

Simon Shooter - Bird & Bird LLP

Next Generation Partners

Lucy England - Bird & Bird LLP

Stuart Cairns - Bird & Bird LLP

Rising stars

Elizabeth Dunn - Bird & Bird LLP

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Corporate tax
Corporate tax - ranked: tier 6

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP's team works closely with the firm's M&A department, predominantly advising on the tax aspects of transactions. The group also has expertise in tax issues relating to intellectual property, as well as international tax, particularly for European and US inbound and outbound work. Zoe Feller leads the tax practice and has experience of corporate, asset finance and structured finance transactions. Legal director Simon Gough is noted for banking and funds work.

Practice head(s):Zoe Feller

Other key lawyers:Simon Gough

Key Clients

F-Secure

DXC Technology

Calero Software

Cobham PLC

Darktrace (Invoke Capital Partners)

Technopolis

Nokia Solutions and Networks

Work highlights

  • Advised F-Secure  on the tax aspects of its $105m acquisition of MWR InfoSecurity
  • Advised Arm on the tax aspects of its aquisition of Stream Technologies
  • Advised Cobham plc on the tax aspects of the sale, to Dassault Systemes, by its wholly owned subsidiary, Chelton, of its "Opera" branded simulation software business

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EU and competition
EU and competition - ranked: tier 6

Bird & Bird LLP

The competition and EU law department at Bird & Bird LLP advises clients in relation to dawn raids, investigations, private enforcement claims, and merger control work. One distinguishing characteristic of the group is its ability to act for clients on issues around the intersection between competition law and intellectual property, which allows it to handle work in multiple industries affected by the advancement of technology. The London-based team can draw on the firm’s Europe-wide expertise in state aid, specifically in regulated sectors such as energy, communication and aviation. Practice head Peter Willis stands out for his reputation in the energy sector. Richard Eccles is also recommended.

Practice head(s):Peter Willis

Other key lawyers:Richard Eccles

Testimonials

'Richard Eccles' legal advice is clear and straightforward. Richard appreciates the need to adopt a tailored approach to his clients' needs and dissects complex issues of EU competition law with ease'

Key Clients

LKAB Minerals

Honda Motor Europe

Earthport

Work highlights

  • Advising a large British airline on state aid-related issues, among others.
  • Advising LKAB Minerals, a Swedish state-owned mining company, on its acquisition of UK companies Gurney Slade Lime & Stone Co. and Francis Flower.
  • Providing competition law advice to Honda Motor Europe on selective distribution arrangements in the automotive sector.
  • Providing merger clearance advice to Earthport regarding a high-profile contested public bid.

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Equity capital markets ‚Äď small-mid cap
Equity capital markets ‚Äď small-mid cap - ranked: tier 3

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP's corporate group has experience of public takeovers and public company M&A, and regularly advises on AIM placings and IPOs involving issuers in the energy and natural resources and technology sectors. The team acts for a long list of finance houses focusing on AIM placings, but has also recently been instructed by corporate issuers in the fintech and mining and minerals sectors. Practice head, Clive Hopewell, has been recognised by clients for his 'pragmatism' and 'effective management of difficult situations'.

Practice head(s):Clive Hopewell

Other key lawyers:Simon Allport; Adam Carling; Simon Fielder

Testimonials

'Technically very strong, but with one eye on the commercial realities of the situation.'

'Commercial, proactive and gritty.'

'High level of flexibility enabling delivery against tight and important deadlines.'

'Heavy partner involvement with strong team of associates.'

Key Clients

Alpha FX Group

Asiamet Resources Ltd

Directa Plus plc

Earthport plc

Frontier Developments plc

Gama Aviation plc

Gamma Communications plc

Griffin Mining Ltd

Harvest Minerals Ltd

IG Design Group plc

Jangada Mines plc

Proxama plc

RhythmOne plc

Tekcapital plc

The Stanley Gibbons Group

Westminster Group plc

Liberum Capital Limited

Canaccord Genuity

WH Ireland Limited

Mirabaud Securities Limited

Joh. Berenberg, Gossler & Co. KG

Panmure Gordon (UK) Limited

Hannam & Partners LLP

Grant Thornton UK LLP

Cantor Fitzgerald Europe

Cairn Financial Advisors LLP

Work highlights

  • Advised Canaccord Genuity Limited as nominated adviser and broker on the admission to AIM of TransGlobe Energy Corporation.
  • Advised Canaccord Genuity Limited as nominated adviser and broker on the IPO of Kore Potash plc and its listing on AIM.
  • Advised WH Ireland Ltd, the nominated adviser and broker, on the re-admission to AIM of UK Oil & Gas Investments plc and a series of pre-admission fundraisings, raising gross proceeds of £12.5m.
  • Advised Alpha FX, a foreign exchange broker, on its raise of £20m by way of an accelerated book build.
  • Advised Joh. Berenberg, Gossler & Co. KG as broker to XLMedia plc on a secondary fundraising.

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M&A: lower mid-market deals, £50m-£500m
M&A: lower mid-market deals, £50m-£500m - ranked: tier 3

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP predominantly acts for technology clients on corporate M&A matters, with a number of supporting panel appointments for clients in the TMT sector. In tandem with this, the team has acted for a number of start ups and fast growth clients with venture capital investment and early-stage M&A. The team is headed by Matt Bonass, who has particular experience in both public and private M&A in the energy and sports sectors, as well as negotiating joint venture agreements. Associate Richard Bloomfield focuses on technology, communications and energy, and is experienced in cross-border M&A. The firm hired James Baillieu from Norton Rose Fulbright, who brings life sciences sector expertise in addition to clients within the pharmaceuticals sector.

Practice head(s):Matt Bonass

Other key lawyers:Neil Blundell; Simon Fielder; Richard Bloomfield

Testimonials

'Great coverage of all practice areas, heavy partner involvement'

'They are responsive, attentive to the details, pleasant to deal with and commercial'

Key Clients

F-Secure

DXC Technology

Calero Software

Cobham PLC

Aser Media

Just Eat

Nokia Solutions and Networks

Kew Media Corp Inc.

Arm

Secret Escapes

Work highlights

  • Advised F-Secure on its acquisition of MWR InfoSecurity, a privately held cyber security company, for $105m.
  • Advised Precision Medicine Group on its $42m acquisition of Argint International, a European clinical research organisation located in Hungary, Poland, Romania, Serbia and Slovakia.
  • Advised Cobham in connection with the sale of its wholly owned subsidiary, Chelton Limited, its 'Opera' simulation software business.
  • Advised LKAB Minerals on the acquisition of two businesses owned by Francis Flower, namely Francis Flower (Northern) and Gurney Slade Lime & Stone.
  • Advised management at Anglo-Canadian insurance broker Beach & Associates in its $130m acquisition by Acrisure LLC.
Leading individuals

Matt Bonass - Bird & Bird LLP

Rising stars

Richard Bloomfield - Bird & Bird LLP

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Venture capital
Venture capital - ranked: tier 1

Bird & Bird LLP

A ‚Äėstandout venture capital practice in London‚Äô,¬†Bird & Bird LLP¬†has a longstanding presence in the market and provides 'commercial and timely advice' to investees and investors on matters throughout the funding lifecycle. As well as the firm‚Äôs core venture capital expertise, clients appreciate the ability to draw upon experts within the commercial, IP and tax teams, in addition to practitioners from across the firm‚Äôs broad geographical network of offices on cross-border deals. Praised for their ‚Äėvery commercial approach‚Äô,¬†Geraint Lloyd ¬†and¬†Struan Penwarden¬†are experienced practitioners in the space, with the latter benefiting from niche expertise in corporate debt venture financing. A ‚Äėclear star‚Äô,¬†Shing Lo¬†is rapidly gaining market recognition as a result of her ‚Äėexcellent understanding of the tech start-up arena‚Äô, while at associate level, the 'incredibly responsive'¬†Mark Rundall¬†is central to the team‚Äôs growing corporate venture offering.

Practice head(s):Struan Penwarden

Other key lawyers:Geraint Lloyd; Shing Lo; James Baillieu; Mark Rundall

Testimonials

'The firm has the legal expertise and keen understanding of the industry in various European countries.'

'The team provides a responsive and pragmatic service.'

'Struan Penwarden is one of the most tenacious lawyers around: he is fierce in his defence of his clients, yet always commercial in his approach.'

'Shing Lo has an unwavering work ethic, is very commercial, and boils down complex issues very quickly.'

'Shing Lo is razor-sharp.'

'Mark Rundall is a safe pair of hands and is extremely bright, experienced and hardworking.'

Key Clients

Albion Capital

BuffaloGrid

Darktrace

EY

Horizons Ventures

Index Ventures

Korea Investment Partners

RT Capital Management

Sony Innovation Fund

Verifly Holdings

Authenteq

Samaipata Ventures

Ingenious Capital Management

Columbia Lake Partners

Censornet

Immersive Labs

Work highlights

  • Advised long term client Darktrace, a machine-learning cyber security company, on three separate investment rounds in 2018, including on its $50m Series E fundraise led by European private equity firm Vitruvian Partners with participation from existing investors KKR and TenEleven.
  • Advised Horizons Ventures on multiple investments, including its lead investment in the $25m Series B round of Synthace Limited.
  • Acted for Ingenious Capital Management on multiple investments via its recently launched Infrastructure Ventures EIS Service.
  • Advised Korea Investment Partners on its Series A(3) financing round for Vaccitech Limited with participation from GeneMatrix.
  • Advised Immersive Labs, a British cyber security firm, on its £4.7m investment from Goldman Sachs.
Leading individuals

Geraint Lloyd - Bird & Bird LLP

Struan Penwarden - Bird & Bird LLP

Next Generation Partners

Shing Lo - Bird & Bird LLP

Rising stars

Mark Rundall - Bird & Bird LLP

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London: Crime, fraud and licensing

Fraud: civil
Fraud: civil - ranked: tier 2

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP is adept at handling various civil and criminal fraud matters; areas of expertise include international risk management and compliance advice, HMRC investigations, pension fraud, corporate fraud, asset tracing, market abuse, money laundering, employee fraud and mortgage fraud. The firm recently launched a 24/7 business fraud and crisis response hotline. Sophie Eyre, who heads the team, has expertise in ancillary relief applications as well as extensive knowledge of trust issues arising from fraud claims.

Practice head(s):Sophie Eyre

Other key lawyers:Michael Brown; Peter Knight; Matthew Foote

Key Clients

BNP Paribas

Global Energy Horizons Corporation

Work highlights

  • Represented Banca Nazionale del Lavoro in the Supreme Court, which upheld the Court of Appeal's overturning of the first instance decision in a high-profile case in which the Playboy Club London had sued the bank for negligence.
  • Advising a defendant in relation to £1.6bn claim brought by the Danish tax collecting authority against 94 defendants in relation to the alleged fraudulent use of the Danish withholding tax regime.
  • Representing Global Energy Horizons Corporation in a damages enquiry following a determination by the Court that a party owed a fiduciary duty to the claimant and had made secret profits and benefited from the confidential business investment plans and strategies for the use of ultrasound in late life oil and gas wells to enhance production.
Leading individuals

Sophie Eyre - Bird & Bird LLP

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Gaming and betting
Gaming and betting - ranked: tier 2

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP provides gambling and betting regulatory advice and assists with the advertising of gambling and the establishment of commercial relationships between the sports and gambling industries, as well as with content streaming, software supply and payment processing deals. The firm is also experienced in technology transfer, data protection and intellectual property work. Andrew Danson regularly advises on online gambling regulations, and senior associate Elizabeth Dunn has expertise in software supply, content streaming and hosting.

Practice head(s):Andrew Danson

Other key lawyers:Elizabeth Dunn

Testimonials

'We have worked with Andrew Danson and Elizabeth Dunn at Bird & Bird and they have been very responsive, commercial and pragmatic and a pleasure to work with. We found it particularly helpful that they were able to come in a brief our commercial colleagues in a way that was accessible and grounded in practical examples and experience to take the advice beyond the theoretical.'

Key Clients

Zeal Group

Sky Bet

GVC

Gamesys

Sporting Index

Smarkets

The Stronach Group

Metric Gaming

Football Index

FunFair Technologies

Work highlights

  • Advising Zeal Group on regulatory issues and the negotiation of commercial agreements 
  • Advised GVC on the £42m acquisition of Crystalbet 
  • Advising Gamesys on its relationship with various game providers, including NetEnt and Scientific Games 
  • Advised Sky Bet on the five-year renewal of its naming rights sponsorship agreement with the English Football League
  • Acting for The Stronach Group on agreements in relation to its international media and wagering rights business for North American horse racing, including licensing agreements with Sky Bet, BoyleSports and 188Bet
Leading individuals

Andrew Danson - Bird & Bird LLP

Rising stars

Elizabeth Dunn - Bird & Bird LLP

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London: Dispute resolution

Banking litigation: investment and retail
Banking litigation: investment and retail - ranked: tier 4

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP regularly acts in major pieces of high-value and high-profile litigation, and the practice has also experienced growth in banking-related technology disputes. Michael Brown's recent work includes claims involving payment services and the Interchange Fee Regulation, and Jeremy Sharman is co-head of the UK dispute resolution group. Matthew Foote and Matthew Pack are experienced senior associates.

Practice head(s):Michael Brown; Jeremy Sharman

Other key lawyers:Matthew Foote; Matthew Pack

Key Clients

Property Alliance Group

Banca Nazionale del Lavoro

Work highlights

  • Acted for Property Alliance Group in claims against Royal Bank of Scotland for the mis-selling of interest rate swaps and unlawful manipulation of the LIBOR benchmark.

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Commercial litigation
Commercial litigation - ranked: tier 4

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP 'has a very rigorous approach to dispute resolution'. It is  particularly active in disputes involving technology and communications,  financial services, retail and consumer matters, and media, entertainment and sports law. Jeremy Sharman and Sophie Eyre  co-head the London dispute resolution group, which also includes Jonathan Speed and senior associate Rachel Glass.

Practice head(s):Jeremy Sharman; Sophie Eyre

Other key lawyers:Jonathan Speed; Rachel Glass

Testimonials

'Jonathan Speed has an excellent eye for detail and stays several steps ahead of his opponents tactically'.

Key Clients

Tradeshift

Bank of China Aviation and Bank of China Aviation (Ireland)

Cathay Pacific Airways

Basis Technologies International

KFC

Work highlights

  • Successfully represented Singapore-based Bank of China (BOC) Aviation and BOC Aviation (Ireland) in a landmark case against the now defunct Kingfisher Airlines and its parent United Breweries.
Leading individuals

Jeremy Sharman - Bird & Bird LLP

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International arbitration
International arbitration - ranked: tier 5

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP's 'very helpful team works diligently on its fact gathering, analysis and presentation via written submissions and during hearings'. It acts in complex and high-value arbitrations in sectors such as technology, telecoms and life sciences, and in addition to commercial arbitration the group advises on investor-state arbitrations. Garreth Wong, Sophie Eyre, Jonathan Speed and Peter Knight are the key names.

Practice head(s):Garreth Wong; Peter Knight

Other key lawyers:Sophie Eyre; Jonathan Speed

Testimonials

'Garreth Wong's assistance is highly appreciated'.

Key Clients

Nokia

Montrose Developments (Private)

Work highlights

  • Acted as lead counsel in a multi-jurisdictional dispute involving a $680m LCIA arbitration, which related to a joint venture investment in a major oil and gas company.
Leading individuals

Garreth Wong - Bird & Bird LLP

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Tax litigation and investigations
Tax litigation and investigations - ranked: tier 4

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP's team has developed specialisations in a number of niche areas, including challenging HMRC's information gathering powers, contentious excise duty, contentious trade and customs, as well as wide-ranging expertise in HMRC-led tax investigations. The department is led by tax disputes and investigations expert Andy Brown and includes Julian Balson, who has particular experience in excise duties and trade and customs work.

Practice head(s):Andy Brown

Other key lawyers:Julian Balson

Testimonials

'Great inside knowledge of the tax regulations in the UK, current practice and the likely interpretation of the regulations by HMRC officials'

'Julian Balson and his team have proven a great customer oriented approach, offering different options with a sound risk assessment for each one of them'

'Specialists in Excise, Duty, VAT and HMRC'

Key Clients

PML Accounting Limited

Zabced Limited

Two different specialist purchasers and maturers of fine rum products

Renewable energy project developer and operator

Work highlights

  • Representing PML Accounting in its application for permission to appeal a Court of Appeal decision in the Supreme Court.
  • Acted on behalf of a pharmaceutical company which entered into two tax avoidance schemes following advice from one of the "Big 4" accountancy practices.
  • Act for two niche purchasers and maturers of fine rum products.  Large consignments of maturing rum held in a specialist bonded warehouse were seized by HMRC due to Excise duty compliance errors, outside the clients' control, that were committed by the warehousekeeper

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London: Finance

Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans
Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans - ranked: tier 6

Bird & Bird LLP

The 'knowledgeable, responsive and cost-effective' team at Bird & Bird LLP has expertise across investment grade, acquisition finance and multi-currency syndicated cross-border lending for borrowers and lenders. The 'knowledgeable, versatile and business-oriented' Andrew Hallgarth is a key member of the team and regularly handles work for multilaterals and development banks engaged in acquisition, asset, project and general financing transactions in emerging markets.

Other key lawyers:Andrew Hallgarth; Samrad Nazer

Testimonials

'The firm has a high level of expertise and efficiency in project finance and general banking transactions, which comes at a materially lower cost than larger law firms.'

'The firm provides partner-led advice, delivered with confidence based on market, and often sector-specific knowledge.'

'Andrew Hallgarth is very helpful and responsive.'

'Andrew Hallgarth offers practical suggestions and clear advice.'

'Samrad Nazer is an exceptional transactional lawyer whose breadth of knowledge across the banking and finance space means he always has a busy practice.'

'Samrad Nazer provides robust and no-nonsense advice.'

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Corporate restructuring & insolvency
Corporate restructuring & insolvency - ranked: tier 8

Bird & Bird LLP

Led by the 'knowledgeable, commercial and down-to-earth'¬†Joss Hargrave ,¬†¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†Bird & Bird LLP¬†provides a 'partner-led service' to banks, corporates and insolvency practitioners on corporate restructuring matters and formal insolvencies. The team excels in providing restructuring/insolvency expertise in relation to situations occurring within industry sector strengths of the firm as a whole, including transportation where¬†‚Äď alongside wider support from the firm's aviation team¬†‚Äď the team is advising the Chinese shareholder of Cobaltair on the insolvency of the airline.¬† Other niche areas of expertise include advice for stakeholders impacted by distressed situations within the financial services and sports sectors.

Practice head(s):Joss Hargrave

Other key lawyers:Claire Barker; Yiota Angelos

Testimonials

'The team provides a  responsive and attentive service to its clients.'

'The team is relatively small but punches above its weight.'

'The team is very detail-oriented and is always ready to explain complicated financial arrangements to non finance board members.'

'Joss Hargrave provides solutions to problems rather than highlight that problems may exist.'

'Joss Hargrave has that perfect blend of professionalism and pragmatism combined with a commercial view built on a foundation of integrity that provides comfort and assurance of quality support at the highest level.'

'Claire Barker is a pleasure to deal with.'

Key Clients

Grant Thornton

Cubits

FRP

Opus Restructuring

Ingenious Energy

BM Advisory

ReSolveRestructuring

ReSolve Invest

Xystos

Menzies Business Recovery

London Luton Airport

Aser Group

Hanesbrands

Hyundai

Work highlights

  • Advising on the administration of Cubits which is a cryptocurrency trading platform specialising in the online gambling sector.
  • Advising the Chinese shareholder of Cobaltair on the insolvency of the airline.
  • Continued to advise Grant Thornton as the administrators of Secured Energy Bonds in relation to  numerous antecedent transactions, including various transactions at under value, preferences, and misfeasance claims.
  • Continued to advise Menzies as the liquidator of two Wonga-style lenders Lodhi Finance and First Action.
  • Acted for the administrators of British Ceramic Tiles Limited (in administration), in relation to the validity and nature of security.

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Emerging markets
Emerging markets - ranked: tier 4

Bird & Bird LLP

The banking and finance practice at Bird & Bird LLP in London frequently acts for commercial and development banks in finance transactions in the CEE, the CIS and Southeast Europe. The firm is also steadily building its presence in transactions involving Asia and North Africa. The practice, led by Andrew Hallgarth , handles acquisition and project finance, aviation finance, private banking and structured finance, and has a strong presence in the energy and utilities sector. International banking and finance partner Isabel Evans handles complex cross-border and project financings.

Practice head(s):Andrew Hallgarth

Testimonials

"Andrew Hallgarth provides work to the highest standards."

"Andrew Hallgarth is an excellent lawyer. He is very knowledgeable, precise, thorough, business-oriented and always able to innovate or propose solutions to get out of deadlocks. He is also quite versatile and works on debt as well as equity transactions to the highest standards. He is one of my favourite lawyers."

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Transport finance & leasing
Transport finance & leasing - ranked: tier 5

Bird & Bird LLP

Headed by Paul Briggs, Bird & Bird LLP's three-partner London team has an aviation finance focus, and is aided in this regard by a strong global offering in Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Briggs has significant market experience for a range of participants, although he is best known for his work on behalf of airlines, including most notably Virgin Atlantic and Emirates. The departure of Jim Bell to Watson Farley & Williams LLP in September 2018 was a blow to the firm, particularly on the debt finance front, although this was mitigated somewhat by the recent arrival of structured asset finance expert Richard Sharman from Clifford Chance LLP.

Practice head(s):Paul Briggs

Other key lawyers:Richard Sharman; Zoe Feller; Marcus Pyke

Key Clients

Emirates

Azorra

CCB

Virgin Atlantic

Erste Group Bank

Nordic Aviation Capital

DVB Bank

BOC Aviation Limited

Montrose Group

Engine Lease Finance Corporation

SDH Wings International Leasing

Concierge

AVIC

Flybe

Work highlights

  • Advised Emirates on the sale-and-leaseback of one Airbus A380-842 subject to a finance lease with Investec. This involved financing arranged by Investec.
  • Advised Virgin on the redeployment of four Airbus A330 aircraft following Air Berlin's insolvency.
  • Assisted with the sale and purchase of one Twin Otter DHC6-400 aircraft by Montrose International Leasing Limited from Air Seychelles.
  • Acted for Villa Air in the sale and purchase of one Cessna 208 aircraft.
  • Assisted a new lessor, Azorra, with the lease of two Embraer E190 aircraft to German airline WDL Aviation GmbH & Co.

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London: Human resources

Employee share schemes
Employee share schemes - ranked: tier 5

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP provides the full range of employee incentives services, with experience in both executive and all-employee share plans and other forms of cash- or stock-based remuneration. Colin Kendon heads the team and acts for clients ranging from multinational corporates to private companies and individuals. Fleur Benns left for Pinsent Masons LLP.

Practice head(s):Colin Kendon

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Employment: employers
Employment: employers - ranked: tier 3

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP's London employment team, which is led Ian Hunter, provides a full-service offering for multinational businesses, with a particular focus on the technology, life sciences, aviation and retail sectors. The team also has advises senior executives, including partners from other law firms. Recent areas in which the firm has seen an uptick in work include injunctions and High Court claims, data protection and employment tribunal cases relating to holiday pay for outsourcing clients. Hunter works with the 'outstanding' Elizabeth Lang, 'knowledgeable and straightforward' legal director Penny Hunt and 'consummate professional' senior associate Jonathan Goldsworthy, who also has expertise in business immigration. The team secured a major boost in summer 2019 with the hire of Stewarts Law LLP employment head Tim Spillane, who is highly regarded for his work with senior executives.

Practice head(s):Ian Hunter; Philip Hartman; Pattie Walsh

Other key lawyers:Elizabeth Lang; Penny Hunt; Jonathan Goldsworthy; Tim Spillane

Testimonials

'Bird & Bird's employment team are proactive, responsive and their advice is practical and to the point.'

'In-depth knowledge of our business and of the industry.'

'Elizabeth Lang is an outstanding lawyer. We have worked with Liz for many years and her core asset is her aptitude for reading people and typical situations that arise in employment matters which we believe is key for providing the best advice and solving issues in the HR space.

'Associate Sam Rayner is an exceptionally bright and highly talented lawyer.

'Legal director Penny Hunt is very knowledgeable and straightforward with her advice. She advises us in a practical and meaningful way and we have built a good relationship during our time working together. She is a great support and I know I can talk open and honestly with her.'

'Senior associate Jon Goldsworthy is a trusted adviser - he is a consummate professional and I value his pragmatic and direct approach.'

Key Clients

Samsara

Comcast

Jet2.com / Jet2 Holidays

WD 40

Elastic

A recycling and recovery company

EDFMan

Subex

A dating focussed social network

Equinix

Work highlights

  • Advising fleet management software company Samsara on the full gamut of employment advice, in particular its recent European expansion efforts.
  • Advising Comcast on the full suite of employment work.
  • Serving as sole employment counsel to Jet2, advising on the full range of employment work including pay gap reporting, data protection and litigation.
  • Advising WD40 on HR issues such as management of grievances, long-term sickness absences, employment contracts and policies, recruitment and terminations.
  • Handling employment issues for fast growth US technology company Elastic Search.
Leading individuals

Ian Hunter - Bird & Bird LLP

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Employment: senior executives
Employment: senior executives - ranked: tier 4

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP's London employment team, which is led Ian Hunter, provides a full-service offering for multinational businesses, with a particular focus on the technology, life sciences, aviation and retail sectors. The team also has advises senior executives, including partners from other law firms. Recent areas in which the firm has seen an uptick in work include injunctions and High Court claims, data protection and employment tribunal cases relating to holiday pay for outsourcing clients. Hunter works with the 'outstanding' Elizabeth Lang, 'knowledgeable and straightforward' legal director Penny Hunt and 'consummate professional' senior associate Jonathan Goldsworthy, who also has expertise in business immigration. The team secured a major boost in summer 2019 with the hire of Stewarts Law LLP employment head Tim Spillane, who is highly regarded for his work with senior executives.

Practice head(s):Ian Hunter; Philip Hartman; Pattie Walsh

Other key lawyers:Elizabeth Lang; Penny Hunt; Jonathan Goldsworthy; Tim Spillane

Testimonials

'Bird & Bird's employment team are proactive, responsive and their advice is practical and to the point.'

'In-depth knowledge of our business and of the industry.'

'Elizabeth Lang is an outstanding lawyer. We have worked with Liz for many years and her core asset is her aptitude for reading people and typical situations that arise in employment matters which we believe is key for providing the best advice and solving issues in the HR space.

'Associate Sam Rayner is an exceptionally bright and highly talented lawyer.

'Legal director Penny Hunt is very knowledgeable and straightforward with her advice. She advises us in a practical and meaningful way and we have built a good relationship during our time working together. She is a great support and I know I can talk open and honestly with her.'

'Senior associate Jon Goldsworthy is a trusted adviser - he is a consummate professional and I value his pragmatic and direct approach.'

Leading individuals

Tim Spillane - Bird & Bird LLP

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Immigration
Immigration: business - ranked: tier 4

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP is focused on business immigration and global mobility matters which include cross-border compliance projects, sponsor licence and Tier 2 applications and contingency planning for corporate clients and individuals. It recently advised a multinational Chinese chain on immigration issues relating to its expansion into the UK. The team also handles bespoke visa applications for exceptional talent, entrepreneurs and investors. Associate Yuichi Sekine is the UK department head and is ably supported by associate Jonathan Goldsworthy.

Practice head(s):Ian Hunter; Yuichi Sekine

Other key lawyers:Jonathan Goldsworthy

Testimonials

'The team has strived to get to know our company's purpose and values, which has enabled them to provide advice that not only meets the threshold of the law, but also where possible aligns with our company's world view.'

Key Clients

A food queue start-up

Growing Chinese hot pot chain expanding into the UK

Faraday Grid

Control Risks

KonMari Media

Matalan

Samsara

A global ad serving platform

Hailiang

Work highlights

  • Advised an executive of a food queue start-up on a complex visa application.  
  • Advises Control Risks on a range of immigration matters.
  • Advised KonMari Media on immigration issues arising from consultants entering the UK to provide seminars and training. The team also advised in Marie Kondo on her eligibility to enter as a standard visitor to undertake creative duties and make promotional appearances in the UK.  
  • Advises Matalan on complex immigration issues.
  • Advises Samsara on all UK immigration issues.
Rising stars

Jonathan Goldsworthy - Bird & Bird LLP

Yuichi Sekine - Bird & Bird LLP

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London: Insurance

Product liability: defendant
Product liability: defendant - ranked: tier 3

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP is noted for its expertise in the technology and automotive  sectors and, as such, is a popular choice for issues concerning driverless vehicles. It advises clients at an international level on all stages of the product, from the initial concept and design phase through to its supply, use and disposal. The practice is jointly led by Jonathan Speed and senior associate Russell Williamson, who both have a strong dispute resolution background. The group also has strengths in the luxury goods and medical devices sectors.

Practice head(s):Jonathan Speed

Other key lawyers:Russell Williamson

Testimonials

'First and foremost, the team has the requisite experience to deal with legal issues within the relevant business sector and is further noted for its ability to treat its clients with the highest levels of professionalism and courtesy.'

'Extremely capable team, with both broad and deep knowledge and expertise in product liability.'

'Jonathan Speed is a very commercially minded partner who provides clear advice.'

'Senior associate Russell Williamson provided specific liability advice for completely new business models in a way that is extremely comprehensive and showcased his knowledge of the regulations, case law, and precedence.'

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London: Projects, energy and natural resources

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

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP is noted for its public procurement expertise. With the arrival of specialist Stuart Cairns, who is well versed in the awarding of works, services and supplies contracts in a variety of national and international projects, the group has secured multiple new instructions from the public sector. It is particularly active in the defense and security sector, where it advises global aerospace and defence contractors; Elizabeth Reid is a key contact in this space. Roger Bickerstaff, who jointly heads the group with Cairns, specialises in EU procurement law issues with a focus on IT projects. Jeremy Sharman advises on procurement in the telecommunications, health, defence and media sectors for suppliers, as well as public authorities. Associates Chris Murray and Claire Gamage are also noted.

Practice head(s):Stuart Cairns; Roger Bickerstaff

Other key lawyers:Elizabeth Reid; Jeremy Sharman; Chris Murray; Claire Gamage

Testimonials

'The partners and associates are highly engaged and always client-facing, with a good overview of the market. Their international connections shape and augment the London offering.'

'With Stuart Cairns and Chris Murray the London team has been enhanced with a tried and tested duo that brings energy and gravitas as well as litigation experience.'

Key Clients

Isavia ohf (Major Development Plan)

Clare County Council (CCC) and University of Limerick (UL)

C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group

Interoute Communications Limited

Landsvirkjun

Smart DCC Ltd

Isavia ohf (Explosive Detection System)

Viapath LLP

Landsnet

General Authority for Civil Aviation

Aquila Air Traffic Management Services Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted as lead advisers to Isavia in respect of its £1-2bn Major Development Plan at Keflavik International Airport, which requires substantial redevelopment to service existing capacity and allow for future growth.
  • Advise Clare County Council and University of Limerick in connection with the securing of a major acre site as a Strategic Development Zone, and thereafter the International procurement procedure to identify and appoint a developer to design, fund and deliver Europe's newest University Town.
  • Assisted Viapath LLP, a partnership formed by Guy’s & St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust, with its bid for a pathology services contract to service nine NHS Trusts Clinical Commissioning Groups under the Competitive Dialogue procedure.
  • Counseled Smart DCC Limited on various procurement processes.
  • Acts for Interoute in its proceedings issued in the Technology and Construction Court against Anglian Water, after the client was unsuccessful in a tender process run by Anglian Water and issued proceedings on the basis that the process was unlawful in a number of ways.

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Mining and minerals
Mining and minerals - ranked: tier 4

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP's London mining offering was kickstarted in 2017, when Clive Hopewell and Adam Carling joined from Charles Russell Speechlys LLP. The team, which has since recruited two more lawyers, regularly represents African state-owned entities, public and private corporations, institutional and private investors, among others, on the full spectrum of mining matters, while also draw on the wider firm's credentials in technology and intellectual property. The 'personable' Hopewell is regarded as 'one of the go-to lawyers in the natural resources sector'.

Practice head(s):Clive Hopewell

Other key lawyers:Peter Knight; Adam Carling; Nicholas Heap; Sharon O’Donnell

Testimonials

'This is a professional team that will always go the extra mile without fuss or negotiating.'

'Bird & Bird is known for its strong industry knowledge combined with exceptional transaction experience.'

'The firm fields a senior team dedicated to client coverage, particularly in the AIM space. It is renowned for its practical approach in dealing with issues.'

'Bird & Bird provides practical and solid legal advice in pressured and difficult circumstances. Clive Hopewell and Nick Heap are valued advisers.'

'Clive Hopewell is one of the go-to lawyers in the natural resources sector.'

'Clive Hopewell is personable, quick to respond to queries and has a no nonsense/point-scoring approach.'

'Senior associate Sharon O'Donnell has outstanding knowledge of the natural resources space.'

Key Clients

Canaccord Genuity Limited

LKAB Minerals

Asiamet Resources Limited

Gemfields plc

Jangada Mines Plc

Harvest Minerals Limited

Randgold Resources Ltd (now Barrick Gold)

Garrison Capital

Canaccord Genuity

Berenberg

Hannam & Partners

WH Ireland

Work highlights

  • Assisting Canaccord Genuity, a Canadian full-service investment banking and financial services company, with the listing of Kore Potash Limited on the AIM market of the London Stock Exchange.

  • Advised LKAB Minerals on its acquisition of the business of Francis Flower, comprising two companies Francis Flower (Northern) Ltd and Gurney Slade Lime & Stone Ltd.
  • Acted for Asiamet Resources Limited on two placings of new shares in 2018 to raise totals of $10m and $3.3m respectively.
  • Represented Regius Resources Group Limited in connection with the acquisition of nine ruby assets in Mozambique by Fura Gems Inc. from Mustang Resources Ltd (ASX-listed) and Regius for a total consideration of A$15m, payable in cash and shares.
  • Overseeing the management of a global trade mark portfolio - involving brand clearance, brand protection and associated enforcement action - for Gemfields.
Leading individuals

Clive Hopewell - Bird & Bird LLP

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Oil and gas
Oil and gas - ranked: tier 4

Bird & Bird LLP

Oil and gas is a fast-growing sub-group of Bird & Bird LLP's wider energy and utilities practice. While the group covers the full gamut of sector matters, including M&A and equity capital markets, it is most renowned for its expertise in intellectual property and dispute resolution issues. The team's clients include oil and gas majors, IOCs and NOCs, and E&P companies. Matt Bonass and capital markets specialists Clive Hopewell and Nick Heap lead the team. Andrew Renton left the firm to start his own practice but maintains a consultant role.

Practice head(s):Matt Bonass; Clive Hopewell; Nicholas Heap

Other key lawyers:Peter Knight

Testimonials

'This team is known for its good knowledge of the oil and gas sector and, in particular, companies in the mid and small cap space. This knowledge makes it unique and able to provide specialist and tailored advice.'

'Clive Hopewell is an excellent lead partner in all transactions thanks to his good sector knowledge and strong commercial acumen.'

Key Clients

Canaccord Genuity Limited

WH Ireland Limited

Carpatsky Petroleum Corporation

Work highlights

  • Advised Canaccord Genuity Limited, as nominated adviser and broker, on the admission to the AIM Market of the London Stock Exchange of TransGlobe Energy Corporation, with a market capitalisation on admission of approximately $200m.
  • Acted for WH Ireland Ltd, the nominated adviser and broker, on the re-admission to the AIM Market of the London Stock Exchange of UK Oil & Gas Investments plc and a series of pre-admission fundraisings, raising gross proceeds of £12.5m.
  • Handled the complete retrial of all issues dealt with in Stockholm arbitration, including allegations of fraud, validity of agreements, and corporate identities, on behalf of Carpatsky Petroleum Corporation regarding its dispute with Ukrnafta OJSC.
  • Acting as lead counsel in a multi-jurisdictional dispute including a $680m LCIA arbitration regarding a joint venture investment in one of Africa's largest oil and gas companies, involving complex shareholder and financial arrangements spanning Panama and the BVI.

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

Bird & Bird LLP

The energy offering at Bird & Bird LLP was significantly bolstered in late 2018 by the arrival of financing expert Conrad Purcell, who joined from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP. The practice has been building a reputation for renewable energy M&A, and it has also been active in the areas of energy infrastructure, energy management and the digitalisation of grids and transmission assets. On the contentious front, the team handles disputes arising from the construction and procurement of major projects, as well as intellectual property issues.

Practice head(s):Matt Bonass; Michael Rudd; Elizabeth Reid; Carol Cloughey; Peter Willis; Ronald Hendrikx

Other key lawyers:Stuart Cairns

Key Clients

Pioneer Point Partners

Bluefield Partners

Next Energy

Honeywell Smart Energy

Pure World Energy

SMART DCC

JDR Cable Systems

Ingenious

DS Smith Paper Limited

Friotherm AG

Work highlights

  • Advised Pioneer Point Partners, a private investment partnership that specialises in infrastructure assets in the energy and environmental sectors, on the acquisition of UK energy platform, Brockwell Energy Limited.
  • Advising Bluefield in connection with various corporate PPA opportunities that it is seeking to pursue with large corporate and industrial consumers in the UK and in Europe.
  • Advising Honeywell Smart Energy in connection with the negotiation of its strategic long term contract with Scottish Power for the supply of the next generation of SMETS 2 compliant smart meters as part of the national rollout in the UK.
  • Supported SmartDCC, the regulated entity responsible for the implementation of the £12bn National Smart Metering Programme, on a series of contract discussions with its telecoms and IT service providers.
  • Advising Friotherm since 2015 on nuclear projects in the UK.

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London: Public sector

Education: schools
Education: schools - ranked: tier 5

Bird & Bird LLP

Mark Abell leads the international education team at Bird & Bird LLP, which has vast experience of advising British schools and universities on their expansion into foreign markets such as the Middle East. The group provides a comprehensive service to education sector clients, covering corporate, commercial, real estate and employment matters.

Practice head(s):Mark Abell

Other key lawyers:Nick Green; James Fowler; Nikesh Mistry

Key Clients

Gordonstoun

Sherborne School

Reigate Grammar School

North London Collegiate

Uppingham School

Sedbergh School

Westminster School

The Perse School

Royal Grammar School, Guildford

St John's College School, Cambridge

Work highlights

  • Advising Westminster School on a deal which will lead to six schools being established in China.
  • Advising Sedbergh School on its deal to build and operate a school in Guangdong.
  • Advising Haileybury on its agreement to bid for funding from the EU to open and operate a school in Malta.
  • Advising London-based early years education company Maggie & Rose on a deal which will establish a family lifestyle business under the Maggie & Rose brand in China, Macau and Taiwan.
  • Advising Vinehall School on its agreement to set up and operate specialist overseas immersion courses in the UK for Chinese pupils.

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Healthcare
Healthcare - ranked: tier 2

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP is particularly known for its strong offering in international healthcare projects; e-health and data protection; innovative public/private sector partnerships; and M&A and investment in the healthcare sector. Simon Shooter advises healthcare providers and their suppliers on operations in emerging markets in the Middle East. David Ayers is experienced with running major commercial projects, acting for both public and private sector organisations, such as advising Guy's & St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust on its contract with the UK Ministry of Defence for the provision of healthcare to British forces in Germany. Stuart Cairns focuses on public procurement work. Associate Ben Woodfield is also recommended.

Practice head(s):Simon Shooter

Work highlights

  • Advised Albion Capital's portfolio company, Proveca, on a £4m fund raising to finance the commercial launch of Sialanar, a treatment for chronic pathological drooling in children, and the development and commercialisation of its paediatric product portfolio.
  • Advised Great Ormond Street Hospital NHS Trust, supporting a consultant team with the establishment of a department in an existing Women's and Children's Hospital in Abu Dhabi.
Rising stars

Ben Woodfield - Bird & Bird LLP

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London: Real estate

Commercial property: hotels and leisure
Commercial property: hotels and leisure - ranked: tier 2

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP’s hotel and leisure practice continues to flourish under the leadership of highly recommended Karen Friebe, who joined from Berwin Leighton Paisner in early 2018. Her team is engaged on the buying, selling and development of hotels on an international scale and draws on the firm’s expertise of technology, food and beverage, franchising and wellness matters to provide clients with a full-service offering. Friebe recently advised Cadogan Estates in relation to the hotel management and food and beverage agreements at the five star Belmond Cadogan Hotel which will see celebrity chef Adam Handling serve as consultant to its main restaurant. James Fowler also played an active role on the matter and is recommended for his expertise on franchising. Also forming the workload are IP-related instructions, data protection issues, international rebrandings and a range of real estate matters.

Practice head(s):Karen Friebe

Other key lawyers:James Fowler; Mark Abell; Graeme Payne; Ian Edwards

Key Clients

All Star Leisure

Aman Resorts

Belmond Hotels

Cadogan Estates

Cedar Capital Partners

Jet2holidays

Kastrati Group

Moto Hospitality Limited

Secret Escapes

Steigenberger Hotels

Work highlights

  • Advising the owner of a hotel in Rome on its conversion to a lifestyle, food and beverage focused offering.
  • Advised the Kastrati family on the negotiation of the hotel management agreement with Hyatt to revamp and rebrand the client's existing hotel to become one of the leading 5* luxury hotels in Albania.
Leading individuals

Karen Friebe - Bird & Bird LLP

Rising stars

James Fowler - Bird & Bird LLP

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Property finance
Property finance - ranked: tier 5

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP advises major domestic and international banks, investment funds and developers on acquisition, development and investment finance involving a variety of asset classes, including office, residential, hotel and retail properties. Jonathan Baker, who has particular expertise in advising on PPP and outsourcing projects, leads the practice.

Practice head(s):Jonathan Baker

Testimonials

'Bird & Bird's team is knowledgable and supportive. They provide accurate and detailed information and commercial views.'

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London: Risk advisory

Data protection, privacy and cybersecurity
Data protection, privacy and cybersecurity - ranked: tier 1

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP's dedicated data protection group takes a sector-specific approach to data with notable expertise in the advertising, financial services, pharmaceuticals and health, luxury goods, technology and communications sectors. The practice handles matters at a national and international level; it recently advised Domino's Pizza on its GDPR and European privacy work and assisted Nespresso with its compliance work in over 30 countries. The team also has substantial cybersecurity knowledge, providing advice on all issues from compliance with data security breach requirements to data protection audits. Ruth Boardman and James Mullock jointly lead the department; other key names include Guadalupe Sampedro, who has notable expertise in EU data protection law and financial services and payment matters, and Gabriel Voisin, who has experience in adtech and online advertising privacy issues and cybersecurity mandates. Legal director Elizabeth Upton advises clients in the technology and communications sector.

Practice head(s):Ruth Boardman; James Mullock

Other key lawyers:Guadalupe Sampedro; Gabriel Voisin; Elizabeth Upton

Testimonials

'Ruth Boardman is genuinely amazing and a standout practitioner.'

Key Clients

The Football Association

Domino's Pizza

La Prairie

BlaBlaCar

Tempur Seally

Eurostar

eBay

Colt Telecom

Nespresso

Work highlights

  • Assisting Eurostar with its GDPR compliance programme and Brexit planning issues.
  • Designing and delivering an international GDPR compliance programme for Tempur Seally.
  • Assisting eBay with various data protection issues across the UK, Spain, Luxembourg, Asia Pacific and Latin America including updating, amending and restructuring the company's binding corporate rules and advising on the data aspects of the launch of its new payments business.
  • Handling the drafting, approval and implementation of controller and processor binding corporate rules for Colt Telecom.
Leading individuals

James Mullock - Bird & Bird LLP

Ruth Boardman - Bird & Bird LLP

Next Generation Partners

Gabriel Voisin - Bird & Bird LLP

Rising stars

Elizabeth Upton - Bird & Bird LLP

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London: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

Brand management
Brand management - ranked: tier 1

Bird & Bird LLP

The brand management practice at Bird & Bird LLP is best known for its strong capabilities and 'superb reputation' in trade marks, patents, copyright and designs. The six-partner team offers multi-jurisdictional advice in relation to trade mark protection, enforcement, strategic portfolio management, advertising and the commercialisation of IP rights. Head of media, entertainment and sport Phil Sherrell has significant expertise in reputation management, media law and contentious IP, often being instructed by well-recognised brand owners in the music, publishing and advertising industries. Trade mark attorneys Mark Holah and Allan Poulter focus on non-contentious and contentious brand protection issues, while Felicity Reeve is a name to note for commercial partnership and sponsorship, particularly in the sports sector. Peter Brownlow is 'one of the best IP litigators in London'.

Practice head(s):Peter Brownlow; Phil Sherrell

Other key lawyers:Mark Holah

Testimonials

'Incredibly diligent. Have an unparalleled knowledge of the sports industry in relation to brand management.'

Work highlights

  • Advised Arsenal FC on the appointment of its new technical partner and kit manufacturer, Adidas, for the 2019/20 season onwards.
  • Advising on the International Paralympic Committee's trade mark and design portfolio, which recently included working with the Australian office to successfully overturn a refusal to register the mark "Para".
  • Advised Orlen, a large Polish petrochemical company, on its sponsorship agreement with the Williams Martini Racing Formula 1 team to coincide with the return of Polish driver Robert Kubica to the team.
  • Represented SC Johnson in a breach of contract claim against a successor company to Sara Lee’s global shoe care business, for failing to transfer trade marks for "Kiwi" in the Middle East under a sale and purchase agreement.
Leading individuals

Mark Holah - Bird & Bird LLP

Peter Brownlow - Bird & Bird LLP

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Fintech
Fintech - ranked: tier 2

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP's fintech practice acts for a number of start-ups and growth scale companies in addition to some large financial services companies, displaying particular strength in the areas of payments, crowdfunding, open banking, blockchain and data protection. The firm's dedicated UK payments team (which is peopled by several lawyers with in-house experience in the sector) frequently advises clients on FCA authorisations, passporting, GDPR, competition law and compliance with various pieces of regulation, including the EU Interchange Fee Regulation, PSD2 and the EU Cross-Border Regulation. On the technology side, partner Jonathan Emmanuel, who specialises in commercial and outsourcing projects, frequently works alongside his colleagues to put in place SaaS agreements, virtual counsel services and various other agreements enabling start-ups to run their business successfully online. Trystan Tether (who has expertise in electronic banking, financial services, electronic cash and payment mechanisms) is currently advising Revolut and Stripe, separately, in relation to EU and UK payments regulation.

Practice head(s):Trystan Tether; Christian Bartsch

Other key lawyers:Jonathan Emmanuel

Key Clients

MasterCard/ Vocalink

EasyJet

Revolut

Stripe

Amadeus

Starling Bank

Booking.com

Alpha FX

Work highlights

  • Advising MasterCard on the EU Interchange Fee Regulation (IFR), the EU Payment Services Directive (PSD2), competition law, cybersecurity, the distribution of insurance services from a regulatory and contractual point of view.

  • Acting for EasyJet in relation to various payments regulatory issues, including PSD2.
  • Assisting Revolut with EU and UK payments regulation.
  • Acting for Stripe in relation to PSD2, the revision of the EU Cross-Border Regulation, the EU Interchange Fee Regulation, strong customer authentication and UK domestic payments regulation.

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Franchising
Franchising - ranked: tier 1

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP’s team excels across the food and beverage, retail, hospitality and leisure sectors and has also recently expanded its expertise in the healthcare, education and green energy arenas. The UK team has three dedicated partners with one focusing solely on franchising disputes; Mark Abell heads up the group, Graeme Payne has notable expertise handling growth and expansion strategies, and Victoria Hobbs specialises in contentious work. The practice has a high-profile client roster, which it advises at a national and international level with KFC, Costa Coffee and Hamleys being key examples, while Payne and legal director Shelley Nadler have advised Mothercare on franchising issues in more than 60 countries. Associate Nick Green is also a key name to note.

Practice head(s):Mark Abell

Other key lawyers:Graeme Payne; Victoria Hobbs; Shelley Nadler; Nick Green

Key Clients

KFC

Costa Coffee

Mothercare

PizzaExpress

Carl's Jnr.

Pret

Migeca – Ca'puccino

Hamleys

Franchise Brands (ChipsAway, Ovenclean, Metro Rod, Barking Mad)

Westminster School

Work highlights

  • Advising Mothercare on its franchising documentation for use in over 60 countries and also assisting with the renegotiation and restructuring of deals internationally and multiple e-commerce projects.
  • Assisting Pizza Express with its international franchise expansion as well as reviewing its franchise documentation and commercial offer.
  • Assisting The Perse School with a deal for the development of a number of schools under its name in China.
  • Advising Black Sheep Coffee on its international brand portfolio management and on the grant of franchise rights for the Philippines.
Leading individuals

Mark Abell - Bird & Bird LLP

Rising stars

Nick Green - Bird & Bird LLP

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IT and telecoms
IT and telecoms - ranked: tier 1

Bird & Bird LLP

The technology and communication practice at Bird & Bird LLP 'truly distinguishes itself with a combination of deep expertise, responsiveness, and appreciation for the practical needs of clients'. The group, which is jointly led by Graeme Maguire, Roger Bickerstaff and Ronald Hendrikx, has expertise in advising public sector clients and corporates on technology implementation and digital transformation projects, handling patent and tech disputes, acting on corporate transactions, and assisting with telecoms regulatory matters. Other names to note include Christian Bartsch, Graham Smith, Mark Leach and Ian Edwards for financial services work, IT disputes and cyberlaw, outsourcing, and IT projects respectively.

Practice head(s):Graeme Maguire; Roger Bickerstaff; Ronald Hendrikx

Other key lawyers:Christian Bartsch; Mark Leach; Graham Smith; Ian Edwards

Testimonials

'Complex telecom procurement is a particular strength of the practice.'

'Bird & Bird shows genuine and deep interest in understanding business proposals and applying its expertise to help achieve clients' goals.'

'Bird & Bird's team offers seamless use of other legal advisers for global view.'

'Bird & Bird's team has an understanding of priorities and rapidly adapts to changes in requirements.'

'Graeme Maguire is a go-to contact. He takes the time to understand the client's unique needs and particular risk tolerance levels, and is able to fine-tune his advice accordingly.'

'Senior associate William Bryson is calm, knowledgable and reliable with great potential. He will go far.'

'Senior associate Cathal Flynn is highly responsive, has encyclopaedic knowledge, and has a fast and thorough understanding of the client's plans and accurate application of expertise to such.'

'Graeme Maguire supports his team in exactly the right way; not actively involved day to day, but clearly in control when pressure rises. He seamlessly steps in to cover.'

'Graeme Maguire provides very good partnership level leadership and is supported very ably by William Bryson.'

Key Clients

ARM

BroadSoft

BT

EE Limited

Effective Space Solutions

DXC Technology

JDA Software

Liquid Telecom

Ministry of Justice

Nokia

SAP

Speedcast

Work highlights

  • Advised Ernst & Young on the establishment of a joint venture with Guardtime for the creation of a blockchain solution in the marine hull insurance industry.
  • Acted for T. K Maxx and T. J Maxx on its digital transformation project.
  • Advised Smart DCC on the implementation of the UK energy switching program, which required the replacement of existing switching services with a new centralised switching system.
  • Instructed by the Whitbread Group on its digital transformation programme involving its transition to a more flexible and agile IT infrastructure including the increased use of cloud technology.
  • Acted for ARM on the acquisition of international internet of things connectivity platform, Stream Technologies.
Leading individuals: IT

Graeme Maguire - Bird & Bird LLP

Next Generation Partners

Ian Edwards - Bird & Bird LLP

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Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 1

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP's intellectual property team has broad capabilities across the full range of rights, with a strong reputation for patent and trade mark disputes in the technology, communications, life sciences, and media and entertainment sectors. The team recently represented Actavis PTC and Actavis UK before the Supreme Court in a revocation action against two Eli Lilly patents relating to the erectile dysfunction drug, Tadalafil; and acted for Merck in a trade mark dispute against Merck Sharp & Dohme relating to the use of the word Merck. Katharine Stephens, who handles patent litigation in the electronic, computer technology and engineering sectors; and Robert Williams, who focuses on multi-jurisdictional patent litigation and trade secrets disputes, jointly head the practice. The team also includes patent litigator Morag MacDonald, Peter Brownlow, who is a key name for trade mark, copyright and design law; Richard Vary, who focuses on standard-essential patent litigation; Mark Holah, who handles brand protection instructions, and litigator Ewan Grist. Eleanor Root was promoted to the partnership, while Graham Smith is now of counsel.

Practice head(s):Katharine Stephens; Robert Williams

Other key lawyers:Morag Macdonald; Peter Brownlow; Richard Vary; Eleanor Root; Mark Holah; Ewan Grist

Testimonials

'Bird & Bird are an important IP advisor to our company, and have run one of our most important design litigation cases with significant success. They are premier advisors in the IP field, and have strong capabilities across the IP spectrum, including clearance, portfolio management and enforcement.'

'Katharine Stephens is a formidable IP expert and trusted adviser to our business. She can be trusted to deal with the most nuanced and complex IP issues with commercial alacrity.'

'Ewan Grist is a talented IP litigator, with an impressive expertise in designs. He was the lead partner on a groundbreaking design infringement case that delivered a significant win for our business.'

Key Clients

Nokia

Monster

TuneIn Inc

Allergan

Merck KGaA

Take-Two Interactive Studios

Johnson Matthey Group

Neo Group

Accord Group

Philip Morris

Work highlights

  • Representing Allergan in high-stake proceedings relating to a patent for a key glaucoma drug.
  • Successfully acted for Actavis in the Supreme Court in a revocation action against two Eli Lilly patents relating to the erectile dysfunction drug, Tadalafil.
  • Acting for MADE.com in ongoing trade mark infringement proceedings against a fashion brand MADE CLO in relation to the MADE trade marks.
  • Defending Merck KGaA in an appeal by Merck Sharp & Dohme relating to the use of the world Merck.
  • Defending Arcadia Group's Topshop against a claim by luxury fashion house Daks Simson, regarding unusual trade mark rights.
Leading individuals

Mark Holah - Bird & Bird LLP

Morag Macdonald - Bird & Bird LLP

Next Generation Partners

Ewan Grist - Bird & Bird LLP

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Media and entertainment (including media finance)
Media and entertainment (including media finance) - ranked: tier 1

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP's 'vast media and entertainment practice' builds on the firm's traditional strengths in IP and technology matters and it handles a range of complex media and entertainment instructions across music, gaming, social media, film, TV, advertising and marketing. International head of media and head of music, Phil Sherrell focuses on litigation and related advisory work and is active on complex copyright disputes and advisory projects which involve the application of copyright to media industry licensing; the team has a 'deep understanding of the music licensing framework, particularly in respect of digital rights'.  The firm's sponsorship, content distribution and sports expertise means it is well-placed to handle e-sports matters in the gaming sector; the team recently advised a leading video game publisher on the development of a third party-operated professional e-sports league. In advertising and marketing, the team handles ASA complaints, and the film and TV offering is regularly instructed on rights acquisitions, as well as corporate and commercial work.

Practice head(s):Phil Sherrell; Howard Rubin; Richard McMorris; Simon Fielder; Bryony Hurst

Other key lawyers:Richard McMorris; David Bintliff; Felicity Reeve; Craig Giles

Testimonials

Phil Sherrell is responsive and intelligent, with a first-rate knowledge of both IP and music licensing issues; he is also a great litigator, confidently leading his team on strategy and tactics.

Phil Sherrell is a pleasure to deal with, even in the most pressured of circumstances.

Key Clients

Take-Two Interactive/Rockstar Games

NDazn/Perform Media

Social Chain

Universal Studios International Kew Media

HBO

PRS for Music

Steve Angello/Size Records

Wikimedia

TuneIn Inc

Work highlights

  • Advised DAZN (Perform Media), the largest sports OTT platform in the world, on its global media buying and creative services arrangements with DENTSU for all DAZN markets and negotiation of various ancillary digital ad platform agreements with Twitter, Google, Integral Ad Science, MOAT, Adgooroo and Jellyfish.
  • Advised Take-Two in a multi-jurisdictional matter against the developers of cheating tools (Mod-Menus), which interfere with Take-Two's bestselling game Grand Theft Auto V.
  • Advised HBO on its licensing and consultancy agreements in relation to the creation and production of a Game of Thrones studio tour and park.
  • Advised a leading video game publisher on the development of a third party-operated professional esports league, including advising on copyright licensing to the various third parties involved, sponsorship deals and the exploitation of the commercial rights to the league.
  • The team advises Steve Angello on all commercial matters, including the release of his album Human through Kobalt Music, where the team advised and negotiated on all producer and side artist agreements, commercial licensing matters and IP disputes. In addition to advising on Steve's artistic career, the team assists his record label Size Records on all commercial matters, including the signing of new talent, distribution and licensing of its catalogue.  
Leading individuals

Phil Sherrell (Music; broadcasting; advertising) - Bird & Bird LLP

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PATMA: Trade mark attorneys
PATMA: Trade mark attorneys - ranked: tier 2

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP was already an important international player before the opening of its San Francisco office in September 2018, but has since noticeably increased its influx of instructions from US clients. The group also continues to grow its roster of UK and EU clients, coming from a broad variety of sectors, whom it offers an online brand protection portal as a key string in the group's trade mark protection bow. Given the firm's wide geographical footprint, the team is very experienced in the management of large international trade mark portfolios, but it also excels in high-stakes opposition and appeal proceedings. Mark Holah and Allan Poulter direct the practice.

Practice head(s):Mark Holah; Allan Poulter

Other key lawyers:Patricia Collis

Testimonials

'Extremely diligent and thorough. Go out of their way to gain a proper understanding of our fairly unique organisation.'

'Patricia Collis is excellent. Super smart, considered and a pleasure to work with.'

Key Clients

Consorzio di Tutela Denominazione di Origine Contorlatta Prosecco

ConvaTec

Daily Mail Group

Fabergé Limited

Kingfisher (B&Q, Screwfix)

KraftHeinz

Monster Beverage Corporation

Philip Morris International

Simba Sleep Limited

Work highlights

  • Assisted Aspinal of London Limited with the trade mark clearance and protection for sub-brand Aerodrome, advised on the protection of multiple key handbag designs and prosecuted the corresponding trade mark applications in several territories, including the EU, the US, Canada and South Korea.
  • Supported Belmond in the management of its worldwide trade mark portfolio, with a primary focus on the defence of UK and EU trade marks, including in relation to the famous hotel Cipriani in Venice.
  • Assisted BitMex with the management of the client's worldwide trade mark portfolio, including the coordination of ongoing disputes in multiple jurisdictions and assistance with the client's global rebranding project.
  • Management of the Daily Mail's global trade mark portfolio in addition to assisting the client with several contentious matters.
  • Represented Consorzio di Tutela Denominazione di Origine Contorlatta Prosecco (Prosecco) in multiple UKIPO oppositions, including the successful representation of the client in the appeal before the Appointed Person regarding use of the trade mark 'Pawsecco' in relation to pet treats sold as a pet version of Prosecco.

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Pharmaceuticals and biotechnology
Pharmaceuticals and biotechnology - ranked: tier 1

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP is known for its 'hard core' IP strength in the life sciences sector. Mark Hilton, who co-heads the life sciences and healthcare group with Sally Shorthose, is highly regarded for his deft handling of complex patent litigation. Noted for her 'good negotiating skills' Shorthose has a focus on the transactional side of IP and regulatory regimes. Corporate partner James Baillieu has joined the team from Norton Rose Fulbright. Other members of the patent disputes group include Tim Harris , Eleanor Root  and associate Chris de Mauny. In addition to its IP skills, the team also handles a range of commercial work such as collaborations and licensing matters together with regulatory matters.

Practice head(s):Mark Hilton; Sally Shorthose

Other key lawyers:Tim Harris; Eleanor Root; Chris de Mauny; James Baillieu

Testimonials

'A strong team with a wealth of technical understanding of industry areas and a stellar track record of work in key areas.'

'B&B are consistently high quality. You know what you are going to get - whilst the fees are high, they will leave no stone unturned progressing shrewd and practical strategies.'

'They remain at the pinnacle of the profession as regards their life sciences work.'

'Mark Hilton provides calm, clear-headed advice and has a keen eye for detail and an understanding of the broader context.'

'Mark Hilton is a match for anyone as a pharma-focused patent litigator. His deep industry knowledge sets him apart from much of the rest of the field. He is calm under pressure and is able to avoid being sidetracked, which is quite a skill in complex patent litigation. There is no one better at 4D chess.'

Key Clients

Allergan

Actavis (acquired by Accord Healthcare)

Merck KGaA

eZono AG

Guy's and St Thomas's NHS Foundation Trust

Fisher & Paykel Healthcare

Calero Software

Mercury Innovations

Teva

Work highlights

  • Acting for Allergan in High Court revocation proceedings brought by Aspire and Accord in respect of a patent owned by Allergan for an enhanced ophthalmic solution which has approximate annual UK sales of £16.5m. This litigation is complicated by regulatory issues and approvals.
  • Assisting eZono on a number of alliance and collaboration agreements with international partners for the licensing and integration of its guiding procedural ultrasound technology into partner products. The work included drafting and negotiating collaboration and alliance agreements and  addressing complex IP licensing and ownership arrangements. The Hong Kong office assisted as a number of the partners are based in Asia-Pacific.
  • Advising Guy's and St Thomas's NHS Foundation Trust on a range of matters including commercial projects for the provision of healthcare to technology agreements and procurement.

  • Advised Calero Software, a leading global provider of Communications and Cloud Lifecycle Management software and managed services, in acquiring the entire issued share capital of Scotland-based Veropath Limited, a leading provider of telecom expense management solutions throughout the UK and Europe.
Next Generation Partners

Tim Harris - Bird & Bird LLP

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Sport
Sport - ranked: tier 1

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP 's 'exceptional', multi-jurisdictional sports team represents international governing bodies in contentious matters, investigations and media rights deals, in addition to acting for football clubs, corporates and major event hosts in a range of commercial areas, including sponsorship and partnership agreements. Leading adviser Jonathan Taylor QC successfully represented the IAAF in Caster Semenya's appeal before the Court of Arbitration for Sport, leading to a landmark judgment on the eligibility regulations governing the testosterone limit for female athletes. On the commercial side, Felicity Reeve advised petrochemical company Orlen on its sponsorship agreement with the Williams Martini Racing F1 team and Craig Giles advised Six Nations rugby on its title partner deal with Guinness for the next Six Nations Championship. 'Fantastic litigator' Max Duthie is another key member of the team. Associate Will Deller brings considerable expertise in e-sports to the team, while junior partner Andy Danson has been involved in several large betting and gambling sponsorship deals.

Practice head(s):Jonathan Taylor QC

Other key lawyers:Felicity Reeve; Craig Giles; Andy Danson; Will Deller; Max Duthie

Testimonials

'Exceptional knowledge, work ethic and attention to detail mixed with a very easy-going manner. Their experience of sports regulatory work is unparalleled in the market.'

'Jonathan Taylor has unrivalled knowledge and experience of the sector and it is always a comfort when you have him on your side.'

'Craig Giles is a detailed, yet pragmatic lawyer. He advises us on a wide range of topics in the sports and media sector and his advice is always well received.'

'Max Duthie is a fantastic litigator, equipped with all the required knowledge, technical skills and advocacy technique, but without the bluster and faux-aggression that comes with many operators in the contentious sports market.'

Key Clients

International Association of Athletics Federations

Federation Internationale de l'Automobile

International Cricket Council

EPCR

Premier League

Celtic Rugby

SkyBet

Six Nations

Stronach Group

Arsenal FC

Work highlights

  • Represented the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) in two separate appeals brought before the FIA International Court of Appeal - one by the Haas Formula 1 team and another by G-Drive Racing and TDS Racing.
  • Advised Aser Media on its sale of a minority stake in Leeds United to an investment entity affiliated with the San Francisco 49ers.
  • Advising the Stronach group on the launch of its international media and wagering rights business in relation to North American horse racing and greyhound racing.
  • Advise The FA on media rights licensing programmes for all FA properties, including The FA Cup and the FA Community Shield.
Leading individuals

Craig Giles - Bird & Bird LLP

Felicity Reeve - Bird & Bird LLP

Jonathan Taylor QC - Bird & Bird LLP

Max Duthie - Bird & Bird LLP

Rising stars

Will Deller - Bird & Bird LLP

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London: Transport

Aviation
Aviation - ranked: tier 3

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP's 'agile and relevant' department is 'customer-focused and responsive'. It is involved in a multitude of aviation sector instructions and has a broad practice covering competition, state aid, commercial, data protection, technology, digital, regulatory and contentious issues; and client's benefit from its international footprint. The team is often engaged on cutting-edge work; notably, it has significant experience in regulatory work relating to UAS and drones. The practice has a strong airline following and acts for easyJet on a gamut of issues such as commercial contracts and consumer and competition law issues; in addition to employment and data protection matters. The 'knowledgeable' Paul Briggs advises airlines, aerospace companies, leasing companies and banks on commercial matters and Sophie Eyre heads the aviation disputes team. Recently promoted partner Lucy England handles commercial and projects work in the sector.

Practice head(s):Paul Briggs

Other key lawyers:Sophie Eyre; Simon Phippard; Elizabeth Lang; Gabriel Voisin; Lucy England

Testimonials

The team's depth of knowledge, particularly in an ever-changing landscape, is appreciated.

The team's sector expertise is valued.

Key Clients

Aquila Air Traffic Management Services

AirAsia Group

AVIC Group

BOC Aviation

Bristow Helicopters

Cathay Pacific

easyJet

Emirates

Flybe Limited

Isavia

Jet2

John Menzies Group

Marshall of Cambridge Aerospace Group

North Air

Royal Jet

SDH Wings

Virgin Group

VistaJet

Work highlights

  • The London team is advising Isavia, alongside colleagues in Copenhagen, on Keflavik Airport's €1bn expansion programme.
  • The team assists North Air on contractual and health and safety issues.
  • The team advised  Cathay Pacific on its claim for reconciliation charges under a ten-year contract.
  • The team is advising a leading global airline trade association on regulations, rights and obligations in aircraft operational data.
  • The team advises easyJet on a variety of payments-related issues, in particular in relation to the revised EU Payment Services Directive (PSD2).
Leading individuals

Paul Briggs - Bird & Bird LLP

Sophie Eyre - Bird & Bird LLP

Next Generation Partners

Lucy England - Bird & Bird LLP

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Travel
Travel: regulatory and commercial - ranked: tier 2

Bird & Bird LLP

Bird & Bird LLP's multidisciplinary travel offering acts for leading travel companies on cross-border projects where the team is supported by the firm's global network of experts. The team is noted for its support to technology-driven clients and acts for a range of airlines, hotel chains, online travel agents and metasearch engines. Commercial work, employment, trade mark enforcement, digital marketing, consumer work, franchising, competition, IP, data protection, GDPR compliance and regulatory advice are key focuses. The team also offers hospitality specialists who are engaged on transactions and business issues in the hotel sector. The team advises easyJet on a range of issues involving commercial contracts, competition and consumer law work; and it advised easyJet and its travel arm on a variety of payments related issues. Recently promoted partner Lucy England heads the team.

Practice head(s):Lucy England

Other key lawyers:Karen Friebe; Graeme Payne; Elizabeth Lang; Mark Abell; Gabriel Voisin; David Bintliff; Simon Phippard

Key Clients

easyJet

Secret Escapes

Blablacar

Expedia

TripAdvisor

Isavia (Keflavik Airprot, Reykjavik), Iceland

Virgin Atlantic

Eurostar

Pret a Manger

Lego

Comptoir Libanais

Costa

Moto Hospitality

Banyan Tree Resorts

Marriott

Wyndham

Intercontinental Hotels Group

Accor

Work highlights

  • The team is advising Isavia (Keflavik Airport, Reykjavik), on the airport's procurement process as part of its expansion programme.
  • Advised Cadogan Estates on a range of matters relating to the five star, luxury Belmond Cadogan Hotel in Sloane Square, which included advisng on the hotel management agreement.
  • The team is advising Lego on its retail presence in airports and other travel hubs across Europe and the Middle East.
  • The team acts as external counsel to a high-profile global travel business on all of its commercial and agreements across the EMEA region.
  • Continues to advise a leading global travel search site, on a number of regulatory issues relating to its business in Europe.  
Next Generation Partners

Lucy England - Bird & Bird LLP

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Further information on Bird & Bird LLP

Please choose from this list to view details of what we say about Bird & Bird LLP in other jurisdictions.

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Offices in Abu Dhabi and Dubai

Australia

Offices in Sydney

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Offices in Brussels

China

Offices in Beijing and Shanghai

Czech Republic

Offices in Prague

Germany

Offices in Munich, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, and Hamburg

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Offices in Copenhagen

Spain

Offices in Madrid

Finland

Offices in Helsinki

France

Offices in Paris and Lyon

Hong Kong

Offices in Hong Kong

Hungary

Offices in Budapest

India

Italy

Offices in Milan and Rome

London

Offices in London

Netherlands

Offices in The Hague and Amsterdam

Poland

Offices in Warsaw

Sweden

Offices in Stockholm

Singapore

Offices in Singapore

Slovakia

Offices in Bratislava

Legal Developments by:
Bird & Bird LLP

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    Earlier this month, we reported that the list of gTLD applications would be published on 13 June 2012. "Reveal Day" has arrived and the list of gTLD applications has been published on ICANN's website. Please click here to download a PDF copy of this list for your review.
    - ATMD Bird & Bird LLP

Legal Developments in the UK

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
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