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Latham & Watkins

99 BISHOPSGATE, LONDON, EC2M 3XF, ENGLAND
Tel:
Work 020 7710 1000
Fax:
Fax 020 7374 4460
Email:
Web:
www.lw.com

London: Corporate and commercial

Commercial contracts
Commercial contracts - ranked: tier 2

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins particularly excels in complex transactions involving disruptive technologies. In the financial services sector, the firm’s regulatory, intellectual property and technology sector expertise sees it handle cutting-edge fintech matters for financial institutions and emerging companies. In 2016, the team in London acted alongside colleagues in New York to advise Credit Suisse on a joint venture with Palantir Technologies to form Signac, a provider of big data analytics tools and financial services. The firm is also a strong choice for advice on other complex business-critical projects and commercial agreements in the industry. Elsewhere, the practice generates work from clients active in other sectors, such as energy and healthcare; in 2016, Andrew Moyle led a cross-border team advising medical device manufacturer Zimmer Biomet on the extension of a multi-jurisdictional finance and accounting services agreement in the Asia Pacific region with Genpact International. Aviva, Deutsche Bank and Axoni are also clients. Gail Crawford is particularly knowledgeable of data privacy and data protection (and their associated regulatory and compliance issues) in the context of large-scale outsourcings and other commercial arrangements. Senior associate Christian McDermott is another key contact, as is recently promoted partner Deborah Kirk.

Leading individuals

Andrew Moyle - Latham & Watkins

Next generation lawyers

Christian McDermott - Latham & Watkins

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Corporate tax
Corporate tax - ranked: tier 4

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins handles the gamut of corporate tax issues involving M&A, private equity and capital markets transactions, especially where there are multiple jurisdictions involved. As an example, in 2016, London-practice head Sean Finn advised Allergan in relation to the $40.5bn sale of its global generic pharmaceuticals business to Teva Pharmaceutical. He also acted for ViaSat in connection with the structuring agreements of a joint venture with EutelSat Communications. Karl Mah also has experience of cross-border M&A, and advised ICU Medical on its $1bn acquisition of the Hospira Infusion Systems business from Pfizer, a deal that was structured as a cash/stock combination and required tax structuring appropriate to over twenty different jurisdictions. He was also instructed by J.P. Morgan as lead arrangers in relation to the €6.4bn refinancing of Pirelli. Sarah Gadd, a specialist in employment tax, was promoted to counsel in 2017.

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EU and competition
EU and competition - ranked: tier 4

Latham & Watkins

The practice at Latham & Watkins is jointly headed by Jonathan Parker, who was hired in 2016 from the CMA, and John Colahan. Parker advised Onex Corporation on its acquisition of Parkdean Resorts, secured approval from the European Commission, while Colahan advised RPC Group on its acquisition of ESE World BV, securing unconditional merger clearances in multiple jurisdictions. The team also advised Survitec on its acquisition of Wilhelmsen Maritime Services and advised GTCR UK on its acquisition of PR Newswire, both cleared at phase I by the CMA. Other key clients include Allergan, Adecco, InterXion Holding, and Singapore Airlines. Associates Sophia Lange and Maija Hall joined the team from the firm’s Brussels office and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, respectively. John Kallaugher is also recommended.

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Equity capital markets
Equity capital markets - ranked: tier 1

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins’ equity capital markets team is especially well-known for its presence in the Nordic, Benelux and Swiss markets and has particular expertise in private equity-backed IPOs and foreign private issuances on US exchanges. European equity capital markets department head Olof Clausson advised Morgan Stanley & Co, J.P. Morgan and Nordea as underwriters on the part-privatisation and DKK19.7bn IPO by DONG Energy; this was Europe’s largest PE-backed IPO in 2016. Similarly, Clausson acted for Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley & Co and Nordea as underwriters of Nets’ IPO on Nasdaq Copenhagen, which was 2016’s second largest PE-backed European IPO. On the issuer-side, David Boles acted for the issuer and sponsor in relation to Resurs Holding’s IPO and listing on Nasdaq Stockholm. He also acted alongside Clausson for VAT Group AG in relation to its IPO of 12 million registered shares on the SIX Swiss Exchange. Richard Brown heads the firm’s UK equity capital markets group and was instructed by TI Fluid Systems in connection with its proposed IPO and listing on the LSEs. Joshua Kiernan joined from White & Case LLP in 2016.

Leading individuals

Olof Clausson - Latham & Watkins

Richard Brown - Latham & Watkins

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Financial services
Financial services (non-contentious/regulatory) - ranked: tier 5

Latham & Watkins

Headed by Rob Moulton following his move in June 2016 from Ashurst, Latham & Watkins’s nascent financial services team has rapidly established itself as a significant player in the market following a number of other key hires including Nicola Higgs, also from Ashurst in September 2016 and most recently in August 2017 by that of David Berman from Macfarlanes. The firm has been particularly active advising on MiFID II implementation mandates for a raft of clients including Jefferies, Rothschild and JP Morgan. The team also benefits from the ability to tap into the expertise of practitioners across the firm’s global network and this has already manifested itself in a high-profile project, alongside the New York office, on behalf of Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Merrill Lynch International in relation to a major review of the policies and procedures of the global divisions of research, equities and FICC and their compliance with the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) Principles for Financial Benchmarks..

Leading individuals

David Berman - Latham & Watkins

Rob Moulton - Latham & Watkins

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

Edward Barnett - Latham & Watkins

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

Edward Barnett - Latham & Watkins

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M&A: upper mid-market and premium deals, £250m+
M&A: upper mid-market and premium deals, £250m+ - ranked: tier 4

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins’ practice is rated for its strength in depth, which enables it to consistently handle large-scale public and private M&A, frequently for US-headquartered multinationals. In the energy and infrastructure space, department head Nick Cline acted for Emerson Electric on its acquisition of Permasense, and assisted Brundage-Bone Concrete Pumping with its purchase of Camfaud Concrete Pumps, Premier Concrete Pumping and South Coast Concrete Pumping. He also advised ACCO Brands on its €296m acquisition of Esselte Group. Robbie McLaren’s highlights in the pharmaceuticals space included advising Amphenol on its $1.3bn acquisition of FCI Asia, and assisting Baxter International with its $625m purchase of Claris Injectables. He also acted for Momondo Group on its $550m acquisition by Priceline. Richard Butterwick has been very active in UK public M&A: he advised RPC Group on its £261m purchase of British Polythene Industries, and assisted Adecco Group with its takeover of Penna Consulting. Simon Tysoe is also recommended, especially for energy and infrastructure matters: he acted for Hancock Prospecting Pty and Buckeye Partners on large-scale M&A. Edward Barnett arrived from Allen & Overy LLP in January 2017.

Leading individuals

Edward Barnett - Latham & Watkins

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Private equity: transactions
Private equity: transactions – Large-cap deal capability - ranked: tier 1

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins has a deep bench of heavyweight transactional lawyers operating alongside first-rate finance and capital markets specialists, enabling the firm to cover the gamut of issues arising from high-end deals; the overall level of service is ‘simply outstanding’. Mike Bond, who is ‘completely unflappable under pressure’, acted for Onex Corporation in its £1.35bn acquisition of Parkdean Resorts, a deal which represented one of the largest post-Brexit buyouts in 2016. Kem Ihenachoa highly personable demeanour’, and Simon Tysoe assisted Helios Investment Partners with its $461.3m acquisition (with Vitol Holding) of a 60% equity stake and 51% of the voting rights in Oando’s West African downstream business. Also recommended are David Walker, who is a global co-chair of the practice, and Tom Evans. Bain Capital, The Carlyle Group, Permira, EQT and Bridgepoint are also clients.

Leading individuals

David Walker - Latham & Watkins

Kem Ihenacho - Latham & Watkins

Next generation lawyers

Tom Evans - Latham & Watkins

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London: Crime, fraud and licensing

Fraud: civil
Fraud: civil - ranked: tier 4

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins continues to handle a broad array of high-profile, cross-border fraud matters across the US, Europe, the CIS and the Middle East. Oliver Browne is a key name to note, specialising in international arbitration across various sectors, and Philip Clifford has substantial experience in the oil and gas, power and financial services industries.

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London: Dispute resolution

Banking litigation: investment and retail
Banking litigation: investment and retail - ranked: tier 3

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins grew its practice through the recruitment of Stuart Alford QC from the UK Serious Fraud Office, where he was responsible for many of the UK’s landmark white-collar cases; and Martin Davies, who acts in banking and financial litigation and fraud cases, and who joined the firm from Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP. The group acts in complex, high-value disputes, frequently with a cross-border element and its clients are leading institutional clients. It defended Samba Financial Group (Samba), one of the largest Saudi Arabian financial groups, against claims regarding trust assets that were allegedly transferred to Samba. Oliver Browne and Philip Clifford are highly respected names; and Jumana Rahman, who has specific expertise in resolving finance and fund-related disputes in offshore jurisdictions, and Dan Smith, who represents clients in high-value disputes, particularly in the financial services sector, are key counsels. Simon Bushell departed for Signature Litigation LLP.

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Commercial litigation
Commercial litigation - ranked: tier 2

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins recently recruited co-chair of the firm’s London litigation and trial practice Stuart Alford QC from the Serious Fraud Office, global co-chair of the international arbitration practice Sophie Lamb from Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, and Martin Davies, known for corporate and shareholder disputes, banking and financial litigation and fraud disputes, from Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP. Simon Bushell departed for Signature Litigation LLP. The UK team is recommended for large, complex, high-value disputes, often with a significant cross-border dynamic; the practice defended Samba Financial Group, one of the largest Saudi Arabian financial groups, against claims, arising out of the high-value Saad/Al Gosaibi dispute, which involved highly complex, sensitive issues of fact and law, including jurisdiction and forum disputes. Oliver Browne is the other co-chair of the London litigation and trial practice, Sebastian Seelmann-Eggebert, who divides time between London and Hamburg, ‘gives clear answers’; and Philip Clifford, Charles Claypoole and John Kallaugher are also highly rated.

Leading individuals

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International arbitration
International arbitration - ranked: tier 3

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins recruited Sophie Lamb from Debevoise & Plimpton LLP as co-chair of the global international arbitration practice group while Simon Bushell departed for Signature Litigation LLP. The practice acts for range of significant oil, gas and nuclear companies, and the group regularly works alongside the firm’s project finance team on disputes. Other areas of strength are construction disputes and investment treaty arbitration. The team advised Austrian construction company Strabag in the first International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes arbitration ever brought against Libya; the case related to Libya’s obligations under the Austria-Libya bilateral investment treaty and related to Strabag’s investment in construction contracts in Libya. Philip Clifford, Oliver Browne, Charles Claypoole, London and Hamburg-based Sebastian Seelmann-Eggebert and counsel Charles Courtenay are all highly regarded.

Leading individuals

Philip Clifford - Latham & Watkins

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Public international law
Public international law - ranked: tier 2

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins recently hired Sophie Lamb, who is noted for investment treaty law and business and human rights, from Debevoise & Plimpton LLP. The practice is recommended for international boundary law and Law of the Sea disputes; investment treaty law; international trade law, including WTO law; international trade sanctions; and business and human rights. It acted for a major Austrian construction company in the first-ever International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes arbitration brought against Libya, which related to Libya’s obligations under the Austria-Libya bilateral investment treaty. Charles Claypoole’s practice includes bilateral investment trade cases, sanctions, international boundary law, and international trade law. London and Hamburg-based Sebastian Seelmann-Eggebert is ‘highly professional and dedicated to clients’.

Leading individuals

Charles Claypoole - Latham & Watkins

Sophie Lamb - Latham & Watkins

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London: Finance

Acquisition finance
Acquisition finance - ranked: tier 1

Latham & Watkins

Praised for its ‘responsive, knowledgeable and highly technical’ approach, Latham & Watkins’s ‘strong and well-resourced’ 11-partner team has the strength-in-depth, on both the bank and bond-side, to service a broad mix of banks, sponsors and alternative lenders. The team also benefits from an impressive global presence, including offices in Europe, Middle East, Asia Pacific and US, to handle a range of complex domestic and cross-border mandates. Team head Sam Hamilton has deeply entrenched ties with leading European private equity sponsor Nordic Capital, recently advising it on the financing, including a €3.4bn bridge and €1bn revolving credit facility, to facilitate Lindorff’s combination with Intrum Justitia. The ‘excellentDominic Newcomb is also particularly strong on the sponsor side; he recently advised EQT Partners on the €773m financing in connection with its acquisition of Kuoni Travel. Alongside Jayanthi Sadanandan, Newcomb also advised Onex Corporation on the first lien/second lien acquisition financing of Parkdean Resorts; notably this was the largest leveraged buyout of a UK target since the Brexit referendum. Adrian Chiodo is well versed in leveraged buyouts across the capital structure including deals with an international complexion; Chiodo recently worked alongside the firm’s Paris office to provide advice to the lenders, including BNP Paribas and JP Morgan, on the €410m financing to facilitate TowerBrook Capital Partner’s acquisition of Infopro Digital. Other recommended partners include the ‘very impressive’ and ‘highly technicalChristopher Kandel; the ‘very strongRoss Pooley, who as part of his broad-ranging practice is handling an increasing amount of work for pension funds as lenders; Ross Anderson, who benefits from a ‘refreshingly no-nonsense approach’; and bank-side expert Stephen Kensell, who joined the team in September 2016 from Allen & Overy LLP. Clients include JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs, Ares Management and Permira Advisers.

Leading individuals

Christopher Kandel - Latham & Watkins

Dominic Newcomb - Latham & Watkins

Sam Hamilton - Latham & Watkins

Stephen Kensell - Latham & Watkins

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Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans
Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans - ranked: tier 5

Latham & Watkins

Although banking and bond powerhouse Latham & Watkins is best known for its market-leading leveraged finance practice, it also receives a considerable and growing amount of corporate lending and corporate-based acquisition finance mandates. The arrival of the ‘excellentStephen Kensell from Allen & Overy LLP in September 2016 brought ‘strong credentials’ in the investment grade debt and syndicated loan market. Kensell advised numerous banks, including Danske Bank, on the SEK10bn combined term loan and revolving credit facility provided to Ahlsell following its recent IPO. Christopher Kandel has very strong credentials among the investment bank community and recently advised the lead arrangers (including Goldman Sachs, HSBC and UniCredit Bank) on TMF Group’s €750m covenant-lite Term Loan B facility and revolving credit facility, to refinance existing senior secured and senior unsecured notes in the institutional loan market.

Leading individuals

Stephen Kensell - Latham & Watkins

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

Latham & Watkins

Enhanced by the arrival of Simon Baskerville in July 2016 from Ashurst, particularly in relation to special situations work, Latham & Watkins’s four-partner team excels at representing broad ranging creditor, debtor and investor clients in big-ticket cross-border restructurings. Although it is relatively small in comparison to some of the teams in the ranking, it is able to leverage a strong international offering, particularly in the US, as well as a market-leading UK and US finance brand that includes strength on the high yield and bank side. The ‘excellentJohn Houghton has recently handled a number of matters emanating out of Eastern Europe including his work, alongside lawyers in the firm’s Moscow office, for DTEK, a privately owned Ukrainian energy company, regarding an English law scheme of arrangement of its Dutch subsidiary to ensure the cancellation of $200m worth of existing notes and the issuance of new ones in their place. Again working in conjunction with the Moscow office, Houghton is advising the bank co-ordinating committee on the restructuring of the Mriya Group; notably this is the largest Ukranian bank and bond default to date. Helena Potts is also involved in the Mriya Group restructuring as well as numerous other major mandates handled by the group including for the super senior liquidity providers on the Edcon restructuring. Other clients include Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan, Marathon Capital and UniCredit.

Leading individuals

John Houghton - Latham & Watkins

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Debt capital markets
Debt capital markets - ranked: tier 2

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins is ‘a first choice for debt deals in the emerging markets space’, for which clients see the firm as ‘well serviced, very proactive and commercial, and fully aware of market practice’. Clients single out the ‘excellent service and professional approach to all tasks – the team knows the products and the sector, so is able to be innovative’. Its primary focus is emerging markets debt, but the team has a growing presence in the European market. Lene Malthasen has 25 years’ experience and plays a leading role in the emerging markets debt practice. David Stewart, who splits his time between the London and Moscow offices, is ‘extremely knowledgeable in emerging markets debt’. Counsel James Baxter is also recommended. The firm’s work for sovereigns included advising the Republic of Mozambique on a landmark exchange offer to holders of $697m in loan participation notes for Eurobond notes with extended maturity. Corporate issuer work included BMW Group’s debut 144a/Reg S offering in tranches with a total value of $6.25bn. The team also works extensively for underwriters and recently advised Barclays, ING Bank and others on the $500m notes issue by Evraz Group. Credit Suisse, JPMorgan, Ukrlandfarming PLC and BBV are also among the firm’s clients.

Leading individuals

David Stewart - Latham & Watkins

Lene Malthasen - Latham & Watkins

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

Latham & Watkins

The team at Latham & Watkinsalways answers fast and has a very good understanding of the structuring of transactions, which means it can always propose valuable solutions’. Clients praise the firm’s ‘seamless, comprehensive global service and the high quality of its finance practice’. The firm has an impressive client base for structured finance that includes Bank of America Merrill Lynch, BNP Paribas, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank and Goldman Sachs, as well as some of the world’s largest private equity houses. Its work includes highly complex and innovative deals such as the €8bn forex forward derivatives hedging transaction that for Air Liquide; corporate partner Thomas Vogel, who works between London and Paris and is ‘business-oriented and can easily discuss with lawyers and finance people to find a solution’, led the deal. The key lawyers in London are Dean Naumowicz, who is widely regarded as a leading light in his field and who last year handled complex margin loan deals for a European bank last year, and new hire Sanjev Warna-kula-suriya, who joined from Slaughter and May as co-chair of the global structured finance and securitisation practice. He advises buy-side clients and banks on global deals involving OTC and exchange-traded derivatives. Counsel Shatha Ali is recommended for advice on transactional and regulatory advice relating to derivatives.

Leading individuals

Dean Naumowicz - Latham & Watkins

Sanjev Warna-kula-suriya - Latham & Watkins

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Emerging markets
Emerging markets - ranked: tier 3

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins is ‘a first choice for debt deals in the emerging markets space’. The London team is central to the firm’s presence in that market and has a strong track record of deals in Russia and the wider CEE region, though its pipeline of transactions sees it active in a wider range of jurisdictions. Debt specialist Lene Malthasen has extensive experience of in Rule 144a issuances and liability management transactions in Russia, the CIS, the Middle East, Southern Europe and Asia. David Stewart is ‘particularly strongly recommended’; he recently acted in matters in Mozambique, Croatia, Egypt and Ukraine. Counsel Ed Kempson is also recommended. Highlights included acting for the Republic of Mozambique on a landmark exchange offer to holders of loan participation notes due 2020 for notes with longer maturity. The team also assisted dealer managers JP Morgan and VTB Capital with the exchange of $750m in loan participation notes issued by Mobile TeleSystems PJSC. John Balsdon’s arrival from Herbert Smith Freehills LLP added significant oil and gas expertise as well as a track record of significant deals in West Africa.

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High yield
High yield - ranked: tier 1

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins is ‘second to none’ and ‘provides very good service from a deep bench of partners and associates’; according to one client it is ‘the go-to firm for tricky deals’. The firm has the largest presence of any firm in the London high yield market and acts for investment banks, corporates and private equity houses. The London team consists of nine partners and one counsel, among which clients single out Richard Trobman and Jennifer Engelhardt for their ‘great client service’; Jocelyn Seitzman, who is ‘friendly and pragmatic, great at working on both sides’; Francesco Lione, who is ‘very knowledgeable and has a pleasant manner’; and Tracy Edmonson, Brett Cassidy and Scott Colwell. Ekin Akar was promoted to partner in early 2017. Highlights included acting for initial purchasers such as Credit Suisse Securities, ABN AMRO Bank and BNP Paribas on Ziggo’s innovative financing structure for a joint venture with Vodafone in the Netherlands, which included high yield tranches of $2bn, €775m and $625m. The firm also acted for banks including JPMorgan and Deutsche Bank as initial purchasers of Numericable’s $5.19bn offering, which was the largest single high yield tranche ever issued to date.

Leading individuals

Brett Cassidy - Latham & Watkins

Jocelyn Seitzman - Latham & Watkins

Richard Trobman - Latham & Watkins

Scott Colwell - Latham & Watkins

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Securitisation
Securitisation - ranked: tier 3

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins has invested in its structured finance team and is benefiting from increasingly prominent roles in large and innovative deals. Sanjev Warna-kula-suriya joined from Slaughter and May as co-chair of the global structured finance and securitisation practice; his work covers a wide range of asset classes and structures including public and private debt, equity-linked and hybrid capital markets issues, securitisations, CMBS, cash and synthetic CLOs, and OTC and exchange-traded derivatives. He advised Deutsche Bank on the £100m sale of a mortgage-backed loan facility, and acted for Grattan Securities on a €186m synthetic securitisation, which was Bank of Ireland’s first deal of that kind. Mark Nicolaides’s highlights included acting for Credit Suisse on Virgin Media’s £350m payables securitisation financing, which uses ING Bank’s trade payables platform. In this first-of-its-kind transaction the firm helped structure the original payables terms, as well as the terms of the ING platform, to create payables with the requisite level of creditworthiness to support a securitisation. Nicolaides also advised on the Punch Taverns restructuring, which was the first whole-business restructuring to include a debt-release clause across the entire capital stack. Other highlights included advising SoftBank Group Corporation on the first-ever securitisation of mobile handset leases and device residual values for Sprint Corporation.

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London: Human resources

Employee share schemes
Employee share schemes - ranked: tier 5

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins’ team has notable strength advising on cross-border matters for both international and domestic clients. London practice head Stephen Brown, who is also co-head of the firm’s global benefits, compensation and employment group, specialises in the incentives aspects of complex cross-border transactions, including tax matters. The team includes associates Sarah Gadd, Kendall Burnett and Lucy Boyle.

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

Latham & Watkins

The team at Latham & Watkins regularly assists clients with a wide range of contentious and non-contentious employment matters, including cross-border M&A, documentation reviews and Employment Tribunal claims. Catherine Drinnan advised Sienna Biopharmaceuticals on employment issues arising from its acquisition of Creabilis, which involved negotiating share purchase agreements. Drinnan also acted Allergan on the employment aspects related to the sale of its genetics pharmaceutical business to Teva Pharmaceuticals. The team is led by Stephen Brown, who is co-head of the firm’s wider global benefits, compensation and employment department. Other clients include Addison Lee, Aon and Thomas Cook.

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Pensions
Pensions (non-contentious) - ranked: tier 5

Latham & Watkins

With a strong international presence, Latham & Watkins’ group regularly handles the pensions aspects of high-profile corporate transactions. It is headed by Catherine Drinnan, who has experience acting for major financial institutions and pharmaceutical companies. The team includes Stephen Brown, whose expertise includes share-based compensation and tax incentives for private equity firms.

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London: Investment fund formation and management

Private funds
Private funds - ranked: tier 3

Latham & Watkins

At Latham & Watkins, ‘clients appreciate that the firm can be relied on to get very difficult and technical investor negotiations completed with minimal input – nothing is ever too much trouble’. The firm provides ‘phenomenal client service’ to leading institutional investors and fund sponsors doing fund launches and transactions alike. Nick Benson, who ‘provides the information in a short and to-the-point manner: clients get all the answers they need and he goes out of his way to understand the problem’ and senior associate James McCrory, who clients ‘trust completely – his ability to remain calm under pressure is very impressive and he comes to clients with solutions not problems’, advised Assicurazioni Generali on a panoply of commitments, totalling approximately €3.5bn in 2016. Other clients include the Africa Development Bank, which Alabaster advised on its investments into Africa-focussed funds, and Buran Venture Capital, which Benson acted for on subsequent closings of Buran Venture Capital II. Tom Alabaster joined Linklaters LLP.

Next generation lawyers

James McCrory - Latham & Watkins

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London: Projects, energy and natural resources

Mining and minerals
Mining and minerals - ranked: tier 3

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins’s multi-disciplinary mining and metals team ‘is able to draw upon a deep pool of subject experts and make them available in multiple time zones to seamlessly ensure 24/7 productivity’. Craig Nethercott recently advised Aluminium Bahrain on obtaining an $882m conventional credit facility and a $618m ijara facility coordinated by the Gulf International Bank, J.P. Morgan and the National Bank of Bahrain. Simon Tysoe, who provides ‘strong specialist legal advice across multiple fields and seamless team management’, is acting for Hancock Prospecting on its acquisition of shares from Sirius and a minerals royalty from York Potash. Recent litigation work includes Sophie Lamb and Oliver Browne representing a Norwegian client in a dispute relating to obligations arising from a shareholders’ agreement governing activity as part of a joint venture in a South American project. Ayesha K Waheed is also recommended.

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Oil and gas
Oil and gas - ranked: tier 3

Latham & Watkins

The oil and gas practice at Latham & Watkins is led by the ‘logical, methodical, practical and coolSimon Tysoe and was recently strengthened by the arrival of international arbitration specialist Sophie Lamb from Debevoise & Plimpton LLP and finance partner John Balsdon from Herbert Smith Freehills LLP. M&A has continued to be a key area of activity; notwithstanding challenging market conditions, the firm advised on more than 60 oil and gas related acquisitions and sales worldwide. Richard Butterwick was part of a multi-office team advising FMC Technologies on its merger of equals with Technip to create a global oil services firm valued at $13bn, while Tysoe, Nick Cline and Dan Maze led the team advising EQUATE Petrochemical Company on its acquisition of the MEGlobal – a manufacturer and marketer of ethylene glycol jointly owned by The Dow Chemical Company and Petrochemical Industries Company – for nearly $3bn. In an illustration of its capital markets credentials, Olof Clausson led the team advising the underwriters on DONG Energy’s $2.85bn IPO on Nasdaq Copenhagen. On the contentious front, the firm is representing Royal Dutch Shell and the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria in two class actions brought in the English High Court on behalf of residents of the Bille and Ogale communities in the Niger delta; the claims concern alleged environmental pollution from onshore pipelines and other infrastructure in areas affected by widespread sabotage of pipelines, as well as illegal theft and illegal refining. Sophie Lamb is acting as one of Shell’s advocates in the case and Debevoise & Plimpton LLP is acting as co-counsel.

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London: Real estate

Environment
Environment - ranked: tier 3

Latham & Watkins

Level of service is excellent’ at Latham & Watkins, where the team provides environmental advice on a high volume of cross-border transactional mandates for the firm’s impressive international client base; recent examples include acting for Onex Corporation in connection with its $1.4bn acquisition of Parkdean Resorts, and assisting Emerson Electric with its $1.2bn sale of Leroy-Somer and Control Techniques to Nidec. The team also successfully acted for Royal Dutch Shell and a Nigerian subsidiary on a major piece of litigation, and in the debt capital markets space, advised Volvo Cars on a €500m senior notes issuance. Other areas of work include management of contaminated land, the insurance of environmental risk, climate change, asbestos and waste management issues. Practice head Paul Davies and counsel Michael Green are both praised for their ‘practical advice on environmental indemnity issues’.

Leading individuals

Paul Davies - Latham & Watkins

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London: Risk advisory

Data protection, privacy and cybersecurity
Data protection, privacy and cybersecurity - ranked: tier 3

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins is noted for its ‘strong and up-to-date technical knowledge and ability to communicate well with lawyers and non-lawyers alike’; its ‘commercial awareness is attractive to clients’. The team is led by the ‘excellentGail Crawford, whose recent work includes representing Facebook in abuse of dominance proceedings relating to alleged data protection violations; advising VimpelCom on the data protection issues surrounding the launch of its VEON digital platform; and assisting Majestic in relation to its GDPR compliance framework and third party data breach notification issues. Time, Addison Lee and EY are also noteworthy clients. Andrew Moyle and Oliver Browne are also recommended.

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London: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

Fintech
Fintech - ranked: tier 5

Latham & Watkins

In addition to its strong cross-border capabilities, Latham & Watkins’ department has longstanding experience in financial regulatory matters, financial products and fintech market infrastructure. Core strengths include providing strategic advice to investors; regulatory, commercial and investment work for technology companies; and assistance to bank consortiums forming utility platforms. On the cross-border investment side, private equity expert Kem Ihenacho acted for TA Associates on its investment in Nigerian fintech business Interswitch; in capital markets, Olof Clausson advised Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley & Co and Nordea as underwriters on the $2.4bn IPO of Nets, Scandinavia’s largest payments processor. Group head Andrew Moyle acted for a major natural resources company on its global paying services contract with a major bank, involving software that allows the client’s suppliers to interface with the bank rather than with the client for invoices and payments. Moyle and Gail Crawford advised two high-profile banks on their migration to the cloud. The practice expanded significantly in 2016, with financial regulatory experts Rob Moulton and Nicola Higgs arriving from Ashurst. Senior associates Fiona Maclean, Christian McDermott and Stuart Davis are also recommended.

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IT and telecoms
IT and telecoms - ranked: tier 3

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins has a particular focus on cross-border mandates, and also has significant presence in the financial services sector. Clients include Aviva and Credit Suisse. Team head Andrew Moyle is highly regarded for outsourcing, strategic sourcing functions and transformation initiatives. He recently advised a medical device manufacturer on extending its finance and accounting services agreement with Genpact International. Gail Crawford is the chair of the firm’s data privacy committee and co-chair of the technology transactions group and the internet and digital media industry group. She recently advised VimpelCom on the development of its digital platform Veon. Senior associate Fiona Maclean, who has experience in multi-jurisdictional IT, outsourcing and business processing transactions, advised Credit Suisse on its venture with Palantir Technologies, Signac, which will use software to assist financial institutions with identifying unauthorised trading and fraudulent activity. Senior associate Christian McDermott assists with large-scale outsourcings, complex technology transactions and payment infrastructure systems.

Leading individuals: Information technology

Andrew Moyle - Latham & Watkins

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Media and entertainment (including media finance)
Media and entertainment (including media finance) - ranked: tier 3

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins provides ‘top-notch commercial advice’. It handles transactional matters including financing, investment, individual production financing and slate co-financing arrangements for film and television productions. Other areas of expertise include licensing deals, first look arrangements, content venture agreements and corporate sales and acquisitions. The ‘outstandingLisbeth Savill advised Dasym Investment Strategies on the sale of the Hammer film library, advised EuropaCorp on co-production and licensing arrangements for the television series Taken, and advised Moon River Features on a first look producer deal with Entertainment One. International Olympic Committee, Moose Entertainment, Open Road Films and MGM are also clients. Counsel Sarah Caughey handles the financing of independent British film productions, as well as slate co-financing arrangements and television content ventures between advertising agencies and broadcasters.

Leading individuals: Media finance

Lisbeth Savill - Latham & Watkins

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