Covers M&A advice on large deals worth EUR 500 million and up. Advice on medium-sized and smaller deals is dealt with in separate rankings.
M&A: large deals (€500m+) in Germany
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Other key lawyers:
Hengeler Mueller has an excellent reputation and is an established address for large German corporations such as Siemens, Lufthansa and Metro AG, which regularly instruct the team on M&A transactions. The team also handles carve-outs, auction proceedings, sales and financing rounds and demonstrates significant expertise in the regulated industries. Thomas Meurer is well versed in advising the seller in the auction context, while Maximilian Schiessl has longstanding experience in public takeovers. Andreas Hoger is a key contact for topics at the PE interface and Hans-Jörg Ziegenhain regularly advises listed companies, family businesses and private equity investors on corporate law and M&A.
Other key lawyers:
‘Commercially minded team with excellent technical skills and extensive industry knowledge.’
Executive and supervisory boards as well as other executive bodies of DAX30-companies and leading international companies call upon Linklaters ' M&A expertise. The team specialises in cross-border large-cap transactions and regularly advises on strategic demergers, divestments and mergers. The close cooperation with the capital markets practice and the industry expertise in the automotive, chemicals, healthcare, industry, infrastructure and technology sectors are particularly noteworthy. Tim Johannsen-Roth heads the team, which includes co-head of the global M&A practice, Ralph Wollburg, as well as corporate law and M&A specialist Staffan Illert. Kristina Klaassen-Kaiser has expertise in cross-border mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures. Florian Harder left in early 2021, he now heads the M&A group at Shearman & Sterling LLP.
Other key lawyers:
‘Reliable, efficient, good quality.’
‘Great team, consistently high quality work products, excellent responsiveness, no wasted hours.’
‘LL was characterized at all times by proactivity, focusing on the essentials and goal- and result-oriented negotiation. As a result, successes could be achieved in a very short time (e.g. references to so far undiscovered legal problems and suggestions for solutions). Particularly noteworthy is the very good access to BaFin.’
‘Staffan Illert is an absolute star, always calm, strategic and technically excellent.’
Clifford Chance‘s team offers combined transactional and regulatory expertise, evident in recent technology-driven transactions in particular as well as in international cooperations and reorganisations. In this space, the team mainly advises companies, financial investors and banks from the automotive, healthcare, energy and infrastructure sectors. Practice head Thomas Krecek is an experienced contact for financial institutions and Anselm Raddatz covers the interface with PE transactions.
‘Excellent and experienced lawyers; Efficient team building with lead contacts and very good internal coordination with experts from other working groups/offices; excellent and proactive project management. ‘
‘Good availability; always responsive; solution-oriented.’
‘Clifford Chance Germany combines real know-how in re/insurance and M&A – that’s actually a very rare ability.’
‘Jörg Rhiel is exceptionally good. He has all the qualities we need – creative, solid legal risk assessment, responsive, collaborative and solution-oriented.’
Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets (MIRA)
Walgreens Boots Alliance
- Advising Pfizer Inc. on the global carve-out and merger of its Upjohn generics business with global generics manufacturer Mylan NV
- Advised Norsk Hydro ASA on the €1.38 billion sale of its rolling business to private equity investor KPS Capital Partners.
- Advising Trinseo SA on the sale of its synthetic rubber business to Synthos SA of Poland at an enterprise value of $491 million.
Gleiss Lutz's team demonstrates expertise in outbound M&A as well as carve-out transactions, with regular instructions from banks, corporations, family-run companies and their shareholders. Large-cap transactions are frequently handled in the technology, healthcare, real estate and infrastructure sectors as well as the private equity arena. The group, led by Ralf Morshäuser, is also experienced in distressed M&A matters. Other key contacts are healthcare and life sciences specialist Martin Viciano Gofferje and Christian Cascante who regularly assists with public takeovers.
- Advising the US technology company AppLovin on the acquisition of all shares in Berlin-based adjust GmbH.
- Advising the family-owned Ritter Group on the sale of the company to the US technology group Avantor.
- Advising the Supervisory Board of VOLKSWAGEN AG on the takeover of the leading US truck manufacturer Navistar International Corporation by TRATON SE.
Latham & Watkins LLP is a popular choice for international mid- and large-cap transactions due to its 'strong international focus'. The close cooperation with the firm's international offices leads to regular instructions on public takeovers, spin-offs, investments and squeeze-outs, with additional collaborations on interfacing matters with the private equity and financing teams. Deputy office managing partner Tobias Larisch is a key contact for well-known global companies and investors from the energy and infrastructure sector and Rainer Traugott is a key advisor to German and international companies, PE companies and infrastructure investors. The group is led by Nikolaos Paschos, who advises on going private transactions. Corporate and M&A specialists Natalie Daghles, Martin Neuhaus, Harald Selzner and Rainer Wilke joined Noerr in October 2020. This was counteracted in June 2021, with the arrival of the two corporate law and M&A experts Ingo Strauss and Heiko Gotsche from Baker McKenzie.
Other key lawyers:
‘Ability to lead transactions and provide innovative solutions that work for everyone involved.’
‘Tobias Larisch is simply extraordinary. His ability to manage transactions and find innovative solutions is second to none. Above all, however, his ability to explain complicated legal issues to non-lawyers as well as lawyers in a simple, pragmatic and clear manner is to be emphasized.’
‘Outstanding quality in cross-merger transactions; strong international orientation; great personal commitment.’
‘Stefan Widder with great communication skills; take responsibility; very pleasant personal cooperation.’
‘Very practical and pragmatic approach. Excellent negotiation skills. Very broad expertise.’
Allianz Capital Partners
- Advising Allgeier SE on the carve-out, spin-off and subsequent initial public offering (IPO) on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange of the global technology and software development business.
- Advising Allianz Capital Partners on the establishment of a fiber optic joint venture with Telefónica Deutschland and Telefónica Infra, SLU.
- Advised Cheplapharm on the acquisition of several BigPharma portfolios for over €1.5 billion.
Noerr ‘s growing M&A practice welcomed corporate and M&A specialists Harald Selzner, Martin Neuhaus, Natalie Daghles and Rainer Wilke from Latham & Watkins LLP in autumn 2020. Thus, in addition to acquisitions, sales and mergers, the team now also has advisory capacities in distressed M&A matters, particularly in the healthcare, energy, e-commerce and automotive sectors. Florian Becker and Alexander Hirsch jointly head the group, which also includes Christian Pleister, who is well versed in PE issues.
‘The teams and Mr Pleister and Mr Becker are doing an excellent job.’
‘Mr Pleister is an outstanding attorney.’
‘Mr Becker is always committed and a good negotiator.’
‘In the context of a very complex transaction, which, in addition to questions from corporate law, tax law, labor law, IT law, data protection, distribution law and insolvency law, also brought up topics from banking supervisory law and insurance supervisory law, Noer was able to provide very competent lawyers promptly for all questions.’
Cellnex Telecom S.A.
Deutsche Finanzagentur GmbH – Bundesrepublik Deutschland
KPS Capital Partners
Liwathon E. O. S.
LVM Landwirtschaftlicher Versicherungsverein Münster a.G.
Schwarz Dienstleistung KG/ PreZero Stiftung & Co. KG
- Advice to Adjust GmbH on the takeover by AppLovin (USA).
- Advising Cellnex Telecom SA in the bidding process for the acquisition of Telxius SA’s cell tower portfolio.
- Advising Schwarz Dienst KG/ PreZero Stiftung & Co. KG on the acquisition of SUEZ’s waste disposal and recycling business in Germany, Poland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Sweden.
Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
In close cooperation with the corporate team, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP advises on all transactional matters in the course of the deal. In addition to private M&A deals, the team is particularly well versed in public takeovers for international corporations, DAX30 companies and financial investors from the upper market segment. The group is led by managing partner and capital markets law specialist Carsten Berrar, Konstantin Technau, who also handles regulatory aspects, as well as York Schnorbus.
Other key lawyers:
Apeiron Investment Group
Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners
- Advising Covivio SA on the takeover of Godewind Immobilien.
- Advised Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners on the public takeover bid for Tele Columbus AG.
- Advising Rocket Internet on their self-tender offer and subsequent delisting.
Allen & Overy LLP
Allen & Overy LLP advises German and international companies as well as investors and most recently was particularly active in the technology, online trading and healthcare sectors, in addition to the key areas finance and energy. The team, led by Nicolaus Ascherfeld, also has expertise in public takeovers and joint ventures. Helge Schäfer is an experienced contact for M&A and VC transactions, joint ventures, MBOs and international restructuring, while Hans Diekmann is well versed in both corporate and capital markets law. Counsel Jonas Wittgens is also active at the interface between capital markets and stock corporation law.
‘Excellence and Ownership.’
‘Absolutely familiar with the client’s business, set-up and various teams. Available at all times, high impact speed. Efficient work in direct contact with specialist departments. In large transactions, always in control of the situation with appropriate capacities and a core team that is as experienced as it is dedicated. Extensive legal know-how, but also very good economic understanding and therefore good sparring partners for discussing economic issues.’
‘Helge Schäfer: Exquisite knowledge of the M&A business and the economic parameters, dedicated negotiator.’
‘Hans Diekmann: Inexhaustible knowledge of company law, always up to date with regard to legal developments. Extremely efficient and absolutely reliable in his statements.’
‘Jonas Wittgens: Tireless in action, excellent organizer and absolutely keeps track of things in the greatest chaos, committed negotiator, absolutely reliable.’
Aloys Wobben Stiftung / Enercon
Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets (MIRA)
Waterland Private Equity
One Equity Partners (OEP)
- Advising American Tower Corporation on the acquisition of Telxius Towers from Telefónica SA
- Advising Franz Haniel & Cie. GmbH on the sale of ELG Eisenalloyen GmbH, including its subsidiaries around the world.
- Advising the RAG Foundation on the acquisition of the elevator technology division from thyssenkrupp AG.
Hogan Lovells International LLP stands out due to an ‘excellent network with consistent quality‘, evident in regular instructions from DAX30 and international companies. The team is experienced in the regulated industries and recently expanded its presence in infrastructure-related M&A transactions. The group, led by Nikolas Zirngibl, includes Tim Oliver Brandi, an experienced contact for financial sector clients, Jörg Herwig, who is experienced at the interface with private equity, as well as energy expert Matthias Hirschmann and Birgit Reese, who handles M&A transactions and takeovers while also advising on restructuring, corporate governance and corporate compliance issues. In December 2021, the team was strengthened with Christoph Naumann (M&A, PE and VC) as well as Torsten Rosenboom (M&A and corporate) in January 2022, both previously at Watson Farley & Williams LLP.
Other key lawyers:
‘Excellent network with consistent quality, so that you receive reliable legal advice and service in a transaction across many countries and continents.’
‘Birgit Reese: Always available, always in the picture, picks up the ball quickly and always provides helpful support.’
‘Proactive, always available, very responsive, good specific sector know-how.’
‘Partner extremely close to the transaction; very active and considered input, also on tactical issues; react quickly to changing circumstances and timelines.’
Aggregate Financial Services
ATR Beteiligungsgesellschaft mbH
BAWAG (Bawag P.S.K. Bank für Arbeit und Wirtschaft und Österreichische Postsparkasse Aktiengesellschaft)
Bundesrepublik Deutschland – Finanzagentur GmbH
Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations (CDC)
CONSUS Real EstateDaimler Group
Deutscher Sparkassen Verlag
FLSmidth A/S Denmark Group
Gesellschafter der Jennewein Biotechnologie GmbH
InfraRed Capital Partners
Ingenico Payone Holding GmbH
NORD/LB und Deutsche Hypo
Parametric Technology Holding Germany GmbH
Vienna House Hotelmanagement GmbH
Zinc Nacional S.A.
- Advising the Austrian energy group OMV on the sale of its German filling station network to the British EG Group.
- Advising the French state financial institution Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations (CDC) on the acquisition of a minority stake of 28.5% in the financing platform Capveriant GmbH.
- Advising the shareholders of Jennewein Biotechnologie GmbH on the sale to the Danish biotechnology company Chr. Hansen.
Jones Day has a strong internationally-oriented practice, active in both mid- and large-cap M&A transactions. The team’s key topics include transactions related to China, where practice head Ansgar Rempp is particularly experienced. Clients include corporations, large companies and private equity companies, often from the technology, internet, FinTech, environmental and renewable energies sectors. Markus Weber complements this offer with expertise in related corporate and capital markets matters.
‘Very cooperative, very competent, very helpful, very compatible with DACH major customers and international major customers.’
‘Markus Weber: Very competent, very personable, entrepreneurial thinking, lots of economic and capital market knowledge.’
EDF (Electricité de France)
Edge Case Rese-arch, Inc.
Furukawa Electric Co. Ltd.
Milliken & Company
Parkwind Ost GmbH
Renewable Energy Holding S.à r.l.
Rising Point Capital
Shenzen Farben Information Technology
Smith & Nephew Plc
Verint Systems Inc.
Wellington Partners Life Sciences
yabeo Advisors GmbH
- Advised Cardinal Health on the successful sale of the Cordis business to Hellman & Friedman (H&F) for approximately $1 billion.
- Advising SAP on the planned joint venture with dediq GmbH with a transaction value of over €500 million.
- Advised STERIS plc on the acquisition of Cantel Medical Corp (transaction volume: $3.6 billion) and on the acquisition of Key Surgical (transaction volume: $850 million).
Milbank has a good reputation and is regularly instructed on national and international large-cap transactions. In addition to transactional capacities, clients also benefit from the team’s interface expertise in tax, finance and antitrust law issues, with comprehensive support on public takeovers, joint ventures and due diligence processes. Key contacts include Sebastian Heim, an experienced advisor to financial investors, and conversion and takeover expert Norbert Rieger. M&A and Private Equity specialist Markus Muhs joined the team from Clifford Chance in December 2020.
Other key lawyers:
‘Extremely high responsiveness and accuracy when drafting.’
‘Norbert Rieger: Extremely strong negotiator. Thinks incredibly fast.’
Auto1 Group SE
HG Darco Group
NuCom Group SE
ProSiebenSat. 1 Media SE
SHL Medical AG
Smith & Nephew plc
- Advising AUTO1 Group SE on the first successful IPO in Germany in 2021.
- Advising the Otto Group on the €1.1bn sale of Hermes UK to Advent International and on the partnership with Advent International for Hermes UK and Hermes Germany.
- Advising EQT VII as lead counsel on the €1.6 billion sale of Apleona Group GmbH to PAI Partners SAS.
Baker McKenzie is regularly instructed by major German companies such as Bayer, Uniper and Metro AG on cross-border transactions. The team has particular expertise in transactional matters in the China context, where practice head Christian Atzler is a key contact. Clients can also draw on the interface expertise in foreign trade law as well as the sector know-how in healthcare, energy and telecoms. Peter Wand complements this with expertise in the automotive sector. Florian Kästle is a key contact for contentious matters. M&A and corporate law expert Ingo Strauss joined Latham & Watkins LLP in autumn 2020.
‘Great commitment; international line-up.’
‘Internationally very good teamwork with all the necessary specialist lawyers. Very short response times to inquiries and quick understanding of problems. Uncomplicated access at all levels.’
‘Christian Atzler communicated clearly and purposefully with his fellow lawyers on the other side of the negotiation and represented the client’s position in an accentuated manner.’
Embracer Group AB
Chr. Hansen Holding A/S
Schenck Process Holding GmbH
Next.e.GO Mobile SE
LIVEKINDLY Company, Inc.
Sino Biopharmaceutical Limited
- Advising Chr. Hansen Holding A/S in connection with the acquisition of all shares in Jennewein Biotechnologie GmbH.
- Advising Metro AG on the implementation of a multi-year strategic IT partnership with Wipro Limited.
- Advising the French industrial gases manufacturer Air Liquide on the sale of the Schülke Group to the Swedish financial investor EQT.
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton advises on public and private M&A as well as going private transactions, delistings, PE and VC investments as well as spin-offs and demergers. The team is instructed by German and international companies and financial institutions, which also benefit from the team's tax and regulatory expertise. Key members include Michael Ulmer, who is well versed in shareholder activism, and Counsel Michael Brems, who also covers employment law aspects in the M&A context.
‘The Cleary team was very knowledgeable about the law and standard German practice. Importantly, the Cleary team worked very well together across disciplines and practice areas.’
‘Michael Brems was a very thoughtful corporate counsel who gave very practical advice.’
International Flavors & Fragrances (IFF)
Lintec – Linnhoff
The Walt Disney Company
- Advising Merck KGaA on the sale of its global allergy business.
- Advising DCC Healthcare on the acquisition of the Wörner Medical Products Group from Checkers Capital.
- Advised Latour Capital on the acquisition of Solvay’s barium & strontium and sodium percarbonate business operated by certain German, Spanish and Mexican subsidiaries and divisions of Solvay.
CMS has longstanding M&A experience, supporting transactions of all sizes. In the large-cap segment, the group is primarily active in the energy, telecoms and medtech sectors and advises on carve-outs, joint ventures, mergers, acquisitions and sales, with frequent cross-border issues pertaining to the US. Another core competence of the team, led by Antje Becker-Boley, Richard Mitterhuber and Jacob Siebert, are distressed M&A matters. Other key members are Maximilian Grub, key advisor to automotive, energy and private equity clients, and Hendrik Hirsch, who assists both sellers and buyers.
‘Very competent, fast-reacting contacts.’
EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg AG
Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG
Chart Industries Inc.
Dürr AG Discovery Communications Europe
- Advising Telefónica Deutschland on the sale of its passive infrastructure at around 10,000 rooftop locations and up to 80 tower locations for a purchase price of €1.5 billion to Telxius Telecom SA.
- Advising Nordex SE on the sale of the European wind and photovoltaic project development portfolio to RWE.
- Support of Shell Overseas Investment BV regarding the obligation to the current consortium of shareholders to acquire 100% of the shares in Next Kraftwerke GmbH.
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP is instructed by industrial companies, strategic investors and private equity companies on M&A transactions. Clients particularly appreciate the team’s ‘distinct economic understanding‘ and the close cooperation with the firm’s international offices on cross-border issues, as well as the interdisciplinary cooperation on interfacing matters. Among the key members are Lutz Englisch, who has longstanding experience in private and public transactions, as well as Dirk Oberbracht and Wilhelm Reinhardt, who frequently assist private equity investors.
Other key lawyers:
‘Availability of employees with diverse skills and specializations; broad international network; Possibility of adding more employees if necessary.’
‘Extraordinary legal skills; strong economic understanding; excellent translation of the client’s interests into contractual formulations.’
‘Lutz English: Outstanding M&A lawyer with extensive industry experience. Excellent economic understanding. Ability to understand even the most complex contract mechanisms. Extremely pleasant to work with.’
‘Wilhelm Reinhardt is an excellent lawyer with the right legal and commercial flair. Proven expert for public takeover situations.’
‘The go-to address in Frankfurt for complex public takeover situations.’
Atlas Copco AB
Lazard & Co. GmbH
Stone Canyon Industries
- Advising Bosch on the sale of its global automotive steering business with steering and transmission pumps for passenger cars and commercial vehicles to Fidelium Partners.
- Advising Gilead Sciences on the acquisition of the German biotech company MYR GmbH.
- Advising Stone Canyon Industries Holdings on the takeover of the American salt business of K+S Aktiengesellschaft.
The internationally-oriented team at Kirkland & Ellis International LLP advises on public takeover offers and demonstrates particular strength at the interface with private equity. Among the key team members are Achim Herfs, who also handles capital markets law matters, and Benjamin Leyendecker, a key contact for taking private transactions.
EP Investment S.à r.l.
- Advising Vitruvian Partners on the sale of Technogroup IT-Service GmbH to the 3i portfolio company Evernex.
- Advising EP Global Commerce GmbH on a voluntary public takeover bid for the acquisition of all no-par common shares and preferred shares not directly held by EP Global Commerce GmbH in MDAX-listed METRO AG.
- Advising Tele Columbus on a public takeover bid by Kublai GmbH, a bidder of Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners.
Large-cap transactions handled by White & Case LLP often feature aspects pertaining to the finance, technology, energy, private equity and infrastructure sectors. The team is led by Darragh Byrne and has particular experience in public takeovers and also demonstrates expertise in advising on real estate transactions. Thanks to the large network, the team is well positioned for cross-border mandates. Murad M. Daghles has experience in Middle East-related transactions. In January 2022, the team expanded internally with the partner promotions of Sebastian Pitz (transactions as well as regulatory issues) and Hans-Georg Schulze (M&A, corporate and commercial).
Other key lawyers:
‘Very communicative and proactive behavior; quick implementation of tasks; good coordination between the individual areas and thus avoidance of duplication.’
‘Ms. Wijnmalen has a very good understanding of the complexity of large M&A transactions and is very good at coordinating the individual areas appropriately and quickly. The result is a neatly coordinated contract. In addition, Ms. Wijnmalen also knows the internal hurdles of a large corporation and can present customized solutions and suggestions accordingly.’
‘Murad Daghles as a partner for corporate law is characterized by solid and reliable transaction support and clear communication.’
Adler Group S.A. (vormals ADO Properties S.A.)
Deutsche Bank AG
PEAC (Germany) GmbH
wefox Holding AG (vormals FinanceApp AG)
- Advising ADO Properties SA on a further step towards the planned takeover of Consus Real Estate AG.
- Advising the energy company EWE AG on the establishment of a joint venture with the Aloys Wobben Foundation, sole shareholder of the wind turbine manufacturer ENERCON, for the joint operation, planning and development of wind farms.
- Advising Panasonic Corporation on the German aspects of its strategic 20% stake in Blue Yonder.