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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In Europe, Middle East and Africa, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for seven consecutive years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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Germany > Corporate and M&A > M&A: mid-sized domestic deals (€100m-€500m) > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings


Index of tables

  1. #Corporate and M&A: M&A: mid-sized domestic deals (€100m-€500m)
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals

  1. 1
    • Barbara Keil - Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
    • Thomas Meyding - CMS
    • Hans-Jörg Ziegenhain - Hengeler Mueller

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

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Gleiss Lutz works ‘highly precisely from a legal standpoint and yet is solution oriented’ and is therefore recommended for the ‘excellent price-performance ratio’. In addition to international transactions, the M&A group, which is spread over six locations, also regularly assists German clients with domestic takeovers, sales and joint ventures. For example, Bosch was advised on the acquisition of ITK Engineering; the shipping group Rickmers Holding on the sale of the Rickmers line to Zeaborn; and Charles Vögele and its shareholders on the sale of the German branch network to the trading companies TEDi, Woolworth and KiK. A merger was handled on behalf of the publisher Landwirtschaftsverlag, which entered into a joint venture with Gruner + Jahr regarding the bundling of the magazine business. The Stuttgart-based Christian Cascante and the Munich-based Ralf Morshäuser co-lead the group. Within the 23 partner-strong group, Martin Viciano Gofferje, who made partner in early 2017, and Hoimar Von Ditfurth are recommended in Frankfurt and Thomas Menke in Düsseldorf.

A ‘top law firm’ for M&A transactions, Hengeler Mueller enjoys a strong reputation among competitors, while clients attest to a ‘good selection of lawyers both in terms of number and seniority’. Recently, the MEDIAN group was advised on the acquisition of and the merger with AHG Allgemeine Hospitalgesellschaft; LEG Immobilien on the joint venture with B&O Service und Messtechnik; and Knorr-Bremse on the acquisition of the electrical systems business from Vossloh. Lawyers with M&A expertise are available at all four offices: in Munich, Jochen Vetter is recommended, Hans-Jörg Ziegenhain is considered a ‘strong negotiator’ and Martin Ulbrich made partner in early 2017, while Andreas Hoger is considered a next generation lawyer in Frankfurt.

Alexander Hirsch and the ‘very efficient and pragmatic’ Florian Becker lead Noerr’s M&A practice, which impresses with a ‘very good service level, high competence and good industry knowledge’. Becker led advice to Passauer Neue Presse in a much-noticed transaction in the newspaper industry, the acquisition of Donaukurier Verlagsgruppe. Another highlight was assisting Volkswagen Financial Services with the acquisition of around 51% of shares held in LogPay Transport Services. With six German offices and expertise in a broad range of sectors, the firm is well positioned to handle national transactions. Additions to the team include Martin Haisch, who came from Dechert in March 2017, and, a month later, Volker Land from White & Case LLP. Internally, Katrin Andrä and Sebastian Schürer were promoted to associated partners at the beginning of 2017.

Baker McKenzie’s ‘very competent’ M&A group led by Nikolaus Reinhuber and Andreas Lohner is spread over four offices and therefore has a strong national network. ‘Down to earth’ and ‘time-flexible team playerIngo Strauss, who made partner in July 2016, and Heiko Gotsche advised claims management provider GFKL Lowell on the acquisition of Tesch Inkasso. Christian Atzler, who made partner at the same time, led assistance to automotive supplier Presswerk Krefeld with the acquisition of the insolvent IBEX Automotive and Gebrüder Kunze. In 2016, a group led by Thomas Dörmer and Tim Heitling joined from Taylor Wessing, while Sönke Becker left for Herbert Smith Freehills Germany LLP.

With 65 partners at eight locations, CMS’ M&A practice led by Maximilian Grub, Hilke Herchen and Ernst-Markus Schuberth is one of the largest in the market in terms of team size. Nationally, lawyers such as the Stuttgart-based Karsten Heider and Henrik Drinkuth handle small and medium-sized transactions. Here, two lawyers were promoted to the partnership, as well as one in Leipzig and one in Munich; in Cologne, Thomas Sonnenberg joined from an in-house position at Triton. The group advised Hamm Reno Group on the sale of the majority of its shares to the financial investor Capiton, shoe retailer Ziylan and others in a bidding process. Other transactions came from the real estate and insurance sectors, while regulated industries are also a focus.

At Deloitte Legal Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH, advice is ‘timely and comprehensive’, ‘with a strong sense of the needs of the client’ and, if needed, in ‘close cooperation with the tax area’. Around the turn of the year 2016/2017, the group advised new client Rondo Ganahl on the acquisition of packaging specialist Walz and assisted HANNOVER Finanz with the acquisition of Schiller Fleisch. Harald Stang6 -

led advice on the last-mentioned deal. Michael von Rüden has a ‘strong understanding of economic matters’ and Georg Lehmannknows how to simplify complex issues’, is a ‘strong negotiator’ and has a ‘keen perception’. Julia Petersen joined from Lindenpartners in June 2016, while Sabine Pittrof left for Squire Patton Boggs in December 2016.

A German full-service firm with M&A capacities at all eight national locations, Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek is a sought-after player in mid-cap transactions, setting standards with ‘high-quality advice, direct availability and fast turnaround times’. Boris Dürr advised the technology group AL-KO on the acquisition of Steca Elektronik and Anne de Boer led advice to Krauss Maffei on the acquisition of component manufacturer for mechanical engineering IBS Plamag Maschinenbau. Other recommended partners include practice head Stefan Duhnkrack, Mirko Sickinger and Mathias Schröder. Oliver Treptow joined from Taylor Wessing in July 2016 and Bodo Dehne from Noerr in early 2017. Simultaneously, Fabian Gaffron and Stephan Degen made partner, while Volker Holl left the group at the end of 2016.

Watson Farley & Williams LLP distinguishes itself from competitors through a strong focus on the energy, infrastructure and transportation sectors, with the Hamburg office particularly noted for its maritime and energy transactional expertise. As well as handling the acquisition and sale of wind farm portfolios, the office advised Zeaborn on the acquisition of Rickmers-Line, a general cargo, heavy cargo and project cargo shipping company. In Munich, Simon Preisenberger assisted the shareholders of the digital agency webguerillas with the sale of 100% of the shares held in the communication and advertising agency Territory. The group is co-led by the Frankfurt-based Torsten Rosenboom and the Munich-based Dirk Janssen; in Hamburg, Wolfram Böge made partner in May 2017.

Arqis Rechtsanwälte is particularly well connected among medium-sized family businesses, which it advises with a ‘very strong business sense’. In 2016, the group assisted TRIGO, a provider of operational quality management solutions for the manufacturing industry, with acquiring the Böllinger group, which specialises in the automotive industry. Another highlight was advising tour operator Fit Reisen on the acquisition of the company formerly belonging to the insolvent Unister group Within the 13 partner-strong group, the Düsseldorf-based Jörn-Christian Schulze and Munich-based Christoph von Einem are recommended. Cosima Preiss left in February 2017 to work in-house at Oerlikon, while Lars Laeger joined from Clifford Chance in July 2016.

German full-service firm Flick Gocke Schaumburg mainly acts for upper middle class clients, family offices and high net worth individuals on national transactions. For example, it assisted capital management company Investmentgesellschaft für langfristige Investoren with acquiring Kromi Logistik, a trading and logistics company for cutting tools for the metal and plastics processing industry. In January 2017, Florian Haus made partner and Benjamin Ullrich associated partner. Simultaneously, the group saw four additions and one departure: Martin Brockhausen joined from King & Wood Mallesons and Thilo Richter, Christoph Sieberg and Roman Stenzel from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, while Stefan Simon left to join the supervisory board of Deutsche Bank.

Görg Partnerschaft von Rechtsanwälten mbB is regularly retained by medium-sized companies for company acquisitions, sales and joint ventures. Recently, it advised Frankfurt Business Media on the acquisition of Die Stiftung Media from GoingPublic Media; and assisted the owner family of pharmaceutical wholesaler Ebert + Jacobi with the sale of the group to Noweda. Yorick Ruland leads the 15 partner-strong practice, which is spread over six offices from Cologne. Here, Wolfgang König and Michael Dolfen are particularly recommended and Oliver von Rosenberg joined from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in November 2016. In Hamburg, Frank Evers is recommended.

The ‘unpretentious and highly service-oriented’ lawyers at Menold Bezler frequently act on transactions including distressed companies. For example, the group advised the insolvency administrator of Maier Formenbau’s assets on the sale of the business to automotive supplier Elring Klinger. In addition to the automotive sector, mechanical engineering is an area of focus. Here, it assisted the TecDAX-listed engineering group Pfeiffer Vacuun Technology with the acquisition of all shares in Dreebit. This instruction shows the supraregional capabilities of the group, which is particularly well-respected in the greater Stuttgart area. It includes ten partners including Oliver Schmidt, Michael Oltmanns and managing partner Christoph Winkler.

Osborne Clarke’s ‘solution-oriented, pragmatic and sophisticated’ group continues to see a strong deal flow in the mid-market segment. On the national level, advising financial services provider FWU on the acquisition of Fortuna Lebens-Versicherungs AG from Generali is a 2016 highlight. The following year, it assisted IT and recruitment services provider Allgeier with the acquisition of Ciber’s German business and advised Indus Holding on the acquisition of m+p international. Philip Meichssner leads the group, which is mainly based in Cologne, Hamburg and Munich.

Offering a ‘very personal and hands-on’ service, SKW Schwarz Rechtsanwälte advises its broad client base on small and medium-sized transactions. For example, it advised a group of four family offices on the €14m acquisition of all shares held in a German advertising industry company. The practice has also been involved in providing legal support to numerous joint ventures, including advising X Filme Creative Pool on entering into a strategic partnership with Beta Film. The 11 partner-strong group is headed by Stephan Morsch, who is based in Munich, as are Sebastian von Wallwitz and Matthias Nordmann.

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