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M&A: lower mid-market deals, £50m-£500m in London

Addleshaw Goddard

Addleshaw Goddard is particularly strong in public M&A, having worked on several public takeovers in the last 18 months. The department advises a large number of FTSE 100 and 250 clients and also has a consistent record of mid-market work for blue chip clients, including several large banks.  On the high-end M&A side, the team recently advised Battersea Power Station on the sale of several commercial assets. Core industry sectors include retail, financial services, energy, and real estate, with private equity transactional work also fully integrated within the M&A group. Practice head Andrew Rosling also leads the firm's retail and consumer group, while senior partner Charles Penney specialises in public takeovers and equity capital markets transactions. Yunus Seedat manages the wider corporate team while Mike Duggan is in charge of the London corporate group specifically.

Testimonials

The firm was proactive and focused on maximising value for money, challenging the other side’s lawyers when they were less engaged

A good knowledge of the various markets and a very thorough and competent approach to drafting (but not at the expense of commercial advice). They are also competitive from a fee perspective

Ben Koehne was great. When others were getting bogged down in the minutiae, Ben was able to take matters up a level to focus on the commercial imperatives & galvanise his team appropriately

They were customer focused, well organised and responsive. What makes them different to others is their genuine customer service and listening to the client.

Key clients

Actis

A&J Mucklow Group

Argent Related

Associated British Foods

Battersea Power Station

Bestway

BP

British American Tobacco

CDC Group

Celador

Diageo

Energean Oil & Gas

Fastpayhotels

GVC Holdings

KCOM Group

Lloyds Banking Group

National Westminster Bank

Rathbone Brothers

SafeCharge International Group

Sainsbury’s Supermarkets

Sealink Travel Group

SSE

Ted Baker

Toscafund

Whalar.com

Wyevale Garden Centres/Terra Firma

Work highlights

  • Advised on the sale of commercial assets within Phase 2 of the Battersea Power Station development.
  • Advised NatWest on its launch of NatWest Tyl and its related investment into Pollinate Networks Limited, a platform designed to help merchants better understand and engage with their consumers.
  • Advising SafeCharge, an AIM listed Guernsey incorporated payments business, on its recommended takeover offer by the Nuvei Corporation.

Dentons

Dentons' strong international reach means that a substantial portion of the London corporate transactional work its M&A team undertakes is cross-border M&A on English law governed deals in geographies spanning Europe, Africa, the Middle East,the  US, Asia and South America.  Its lawyers have expertise across a broad range of sectors including real estate, manufacturing, energy, technology, insurance, financial services, gaming and insurance. David Collins , who heads the UK corporate department and co-chairs the global M&A group, has experience in both public and private M&A, ECM, and corporate advisory work. Other key names in the practice include Neil Nicholson , who is particularly experienced in emerging markets matters and real estate specialist Matthew Tinger. Jeremy Cohen is  skilled in relation to public company transactions including IPOs, equity fundraisings, takeovers, mergers, demergers, and private M&A.

Practice head(s):

David Collins

Testimonials

Neil Nicholson is heads and shoulders above the rest. The veracity of his counsel, his friendship and his hugely responsive professional attitude is unparalleled’

Agile, flexible and willing to go the extra mile to get transactions done

Pragmatic, commercially minded legal advice undertaken with a ‘can do’ attitude.

The level of service provided by Dentons is outstanding. The team members have always made sure that we experience the value addition in all our deals. Their unmatched capability provides us plenty of opportunities to select the right investment decisions.

Key clients

Informa plc

Hurricane Energy plc

Sonco Gaming

Bonhill Group plc

PRS REIT

Harrison Street Real Estate Capital LLC

Aprirose Limited

CK Holdings Co. Ltd

Bilby plc

DP Eurasia N.V.

Marshall Motor Holdings plc

Science in Sport

Work highlights

  • Advised The Valence Group, the specialist investment bank offering M&A advisory services exclusively to companies and investors in the chemicals, materials and related sectors, on its acquisition by leading investment bank and institutional securities firm Piper Sandler Companies.
  • Advised Adjarabet, the market leader in online betting and gaming in the regulated Georgian market, on a £101 million acquisition by Paddy Power Betfair plc for an initial 51% controlling stake.
  • Advised Informa plc, the FTSE 100 International Exhibitions, Events, Information Services and Scholarly Publishing Group on the exchange of its Agribusiness Intelligence Portfolio for IHS Markit’s portfolio of TMT brands.

DLA Piper

DLA Piper leverages its global network of offices to advise clients undertaking transactions spanning a range of jurisdictions, in addition to being able to offer a strong UK-wide presence. Key sectors for the M&A team include TMT and corporate real estate. M&A practice head Jon Kenworthy specialises in consumer goods, while Robert Bishop leads the wider corporate group. The team  received a significant boost in London in September 2020 with the recruitment of former Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher  partner Jonathan Earle  and former McDermott Will & Emery UK LLP  private equity partner Piero Carbone . In 2019 it added M&A partnerTracey Renshaw  from Clifford Chance in Australia.

Practice head(s):

Robert Bishop; Jon Kenworthy

Testimonials

‘A full service and competent offering’

‘Strong legal prowess along with sensible commercial perspectives’

Lead partner had gravitas and coordinated the legal aspects of the deal demonstrating strong legal prowess along with sensible commercial perspectives.

Full competent service offering, M&A team was hired for an exit and their competition team, financing team, tax team and labour team all assisted on various legal work streams at different stages to ensure the deal was closed.

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP's M&A practice is particularly experienced across the financial services, energy, infrastructure, real estate and TMT sectors. The firm's broad practice spread means it can call on lawyers working in antitrust, tax and finance to assist on transactions domestically and internationally. Cross-border work is a large part of the group's work and it recently launched DealMaster, an intelligent digital knowledge and project management tool for cross border transactions. Robin Johnson jointly co-chairs the cross-border M&A team, working across 30 jurisdictions. The private equity practice sits within the wider corporate group, advising more than 25 private equity houses, and is an area in which Richard Moulton, who co-heads the global corporate and M&A practice, is particularly experienced. Chris Halliday is another name to note and is particularly experienced in the insurance market, advising warranty and indemnity underwriters.

Practice head(s):

Richard Moulton; Robin Johnson

Other key lawyers:

Chris Halliday; Stephen Nash

Testimonials

Great all round firm. Excellent support throughout our project. Attentive and available. Knowledgeable and efficient’

‘Sensible use of regional office network to give excellent value for money

‘I cannot speak highly enough of Richard Moulton; his availability, knowledge and guidance throughout was first class.

Key clients

DuPont

CGN Europe Energy

Intermediate Capital Group

Nestle

Inflexion Private Equity

Shell

Legal & General

American Express

Experian

Smiths Group

Work highlights

  • Advised international coach and bus manufacturer NFI Group Inc (NFI) on its acquisition of Alexander Dennis Limited (ADL), in a deal worth £320m.
  • Advised nVent Management Company in its acquisition of a leading European enclosures group, the Eldon group of companies.
  • Advised Ricoh on its definitive agreement to acquire DocuWare, a leading provider of Content Services software.

Pinsent Masons LLP

Pinsent Masons LLP advises large corporate clients, with the strength of its practice highlighted by its role representing Zurich on the £11bn sale of its UK workplace pensions, savings and retail wealth businesses.  Hannah Brader was the lead partner on this transaction and advises on domestic and cross-border mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures and strategic alliances. The wider team has a strong focus on private equity, having undertaken an array of transactions in this field, including advising sponsors on investments and exits. Public to private deals remain a key feature of the practice's work. AIM market specialist Jon Harris has a particular focus on clients looking to tap into the UK capital markets, advising on IPOs, M&A and other corporate transactions, while Rob Hutchings is a name to note for his work in main market corporate transactions. Julian Stanier leads the corporate finance practice.

Practice head(s):

Julian Stanier

Testimonials

‘Experienced, intelligent and user friendly. Fast turnaround and drivers of timing when required.’

Key clients

Zurich Financial Services (UKISA) Limited and Allied Zurich Holdings Limited

CommScope Inc

Canaccord Genuity

Premier Technical Services Group plc

Stride Gaming

Huntsworth plc

CH & Co Catering Limited

AB Dynamics

Navis Capital Partners

Bridges Fund Management Ltd

M Group Services

Motor Fuel Group

Horizon Capital LLP

Mabey Holdings Limited

Booker Direct Limited

Livingstone Partners LLP

Houlihan Lokey

Work highlights

  • Advising Zurich, the global insurance provider, on the sale of its UK Retail Wealth business, with assets under administration totalling c. £11 billion and more than 130,000 advised clients, to Embark Group.
  • Advised CommScope Inc. on its $7.4 billion acquisition of ARRIS International plc.
  • Advised Premier Technical Services Group plc on its £265 million recommended acquisition by an entity set up by the Australian investment group Macquarie.

Squire Patton Boggs

Supported by its offices in Leeds, Birmingham and Manchester, Squire Patton Boggs's London M&A team advises clients on domestic and cross-border deals across a range of sectors. Within the media sector the team, led by Nick Allen, is particularly experienced acting for clients in marketing services, live entertainment, publishing and film production. Trevor Ingle heads up the energy and utilities sector, advising corporates, utilities, funds  and developers  across renewable infrastructure and clean tech. Other key sectors for the group include industrials, financial services and recruitment, where the key names to note are James McKay, Robert Bray and Tim Stead respectively. The London corporate team has been bolstered by the arrivals of Stephen Ball from KPMG as well as Ben Squires and Charles Leeming from Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP . Former EMEA corporate chair Jane Haxby was appointed as the firm's London managing partner in January 2020.

Testimonials

‘The team is very professional, effective and available’

‘Experts in my industry, which makes the team always valuable’

Key clients

Grafton Group PLC

Live Nation Entertainment

Coats Group PLC

Luceco PLC

Synthomer PLC

EDF Energy Renewables

Homeserve PLC

Low & Bonar PLC

Lucite International

Polypipe Group PLC

Work highlights

  • Advising Accelya and management on the sale and secondary buyout by Vista Equity Partners.
  • Acquisition of the entire issued share capital of TSC Power 2 Limited and certain shares in Pivot Power Limited.
  • Acquisition of Tulip Limited and its subsidiaries by Pilgrim’s Pride (a JBS company) from Danish Crown.

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP has continued to bolster its bench strength since its 2018 transatlantic merger, with the hire of Simon Beddow as departmental managing partner of corporate and the addition of Kurt Ma from Slaughter and May. The practice routinely acts on transatlantic and other multi-jurisdictional deals and is particularly adept at advising clients within the energy, natural resources, real estate, technology, financial services, retail and healthcare sectors. The firm makes use of its strength across relevant disciplines including tax, human resources, antitrust and financial services to pull together multi-disciplinary transaction teams. Benjamin Lee  is co-head of EMEA M&A alongside private equity and retail specialist Carol Osborne. John Bennett is another name to note within the practice.

Practice head(s):

Benjamin Lee; Carol Osborne

Other key lawyers:

John Bennett

Key clients

BCA Marketplace

MTAA Super

Flybe

BT

Enterprise Rent-a-Car

Thesis Group

Northenstar Investments

Unite UK Student

Kape Technologies

Goldman Sachs International

Susanne Kaufmann Kosmetik

Grange Hotels

Aedifica

SEACOR Marine Holdings Inc.

Stifel

Shore Capital

Work highlights

  • Advised BCA in connection with a £1.9bn offer made by TDR Capital LLP.
  • Advised Capco on the sale of its interests in Earls Court to APG and Delancey for £425m.
  • Advised Thesis Group on the disposal of its private client discretionary portfolio management services business by way of hive-out to a new company, and then share sale, to Sanlam UK.

McDermott Will & Emery UK LLP

McDermott Will & Emery UK LLP's full service corporate group assists major companies from a range of industries but has a particularly strong reputation for its work in the life sciences and healthcare sectors. The team regularly handles cross-border transactions and is able to collaborate with other offices across the firm's  global network. As well as  advising on high value deals for corporates, the firm also assists on large transactions for family offices, utilising lawyers from its private client, corporate and tax teams.  The team, which is headed by Nicholas Azis, added Tom Whelan from Hogan Lovells International LLP, strengthening the firm's private equity offering. Azis advises a broad range of publicly owned and privately held clients, principally in the commodities, energy, life science and manufacturing sectors. Stuart Mathews and Calum Thom are other key names to note in the team.

Practice head(s):

Nicholas Azis

Other key lawyers:

Stuart Mathews; Calum Thom; Tom Whelan

Key clients

TAC Limited

Palamon Capital

Irving Oil

ServiceMaster Global Holdings Inc

ManpowerGroup Inc

Multigate Medical Products Pty Ltd

BlueGem Capital Partners LLP

Work highlights

  • Advised TAC Limited on its sale of Leased Assets Pool Company Limited.
  • Advised Palamon Capital Partners, a European growth buyout private equity firm, on the sale of Il Bisonte to Tokyo Stock exchange-listed fashion distribution specialist, Look Holdings Inc.
  • Represented Irving Oil in its acquisition of the Tedcastle Group of companies in Ireland, which operates under the brand name “Top Oil.”

Reed Smith LLP

Reed Smith LLP acts on both domestic and cross-border mandates, across the public and private sector. The London-based corporate team works with the firm's offices in the Middle East, Asia, Europe and the US, frequently advising on multi-jurisdictional matters. The practice is led by Delphine Currie, who is particularly experienced in the media, energy, entertainment, natural resources, life sciences and financial services sectors. Philip Taylor and Michael Young  are both names to note in the wider team.

Practice head(s):

Delphine Currie

Other key lawyers:

Philip Taylor; Michael Young

Testimonials

Very cohesive, with wide range/spectrum of skillsets.

Simmons & Simmons

Simmons & Simmons M&A team primarily advises clients in the firm's four key sectors: asset management, financial institutions, healthcare and life sciences, and TMT. Work predominantly includes public takeovers, private and auction sales, joint ventures and strategic alliances, with a particular focus on the broader context associated with the heavily regulated nature of its key sectors. The department advises a range of retail, investment and challenger banks as well as large listed and private corporates. Arthur Stewart, who became head of the firm's UK corporate group in 2019, specialises in private equity work and transactions for asset managers and financial institutions. Ania Rontaler is a name to note for her work in the asset management and investment funds sectors while Gideon Sharp co-heads the international private equity team.

Practice head(s):

Arthur Stewart

Other key lawyers:

Gideon Sharp; Ania Rontaler

Testimonials

‘Simmons & Simmons have real strength in depth, with highly competent specialists that make even the most complex deals easy. Also, they have a great attitude and are a pleasure to work with.

‘Mark Carroll is really excellent. He’s knowledgeable and works extremely well under pressure. He also knows the internal Simmons & Simmons network well, so is able to bring onboard great specialists.

Gideon Sharp is extremely calm and has an easy style that makes him good to work with even in pressurised situations. His advice was always succinct and given through a lens of commerciality’

Key clients

Liontrust Asset Management Plc

Future plc

Société Générale

APG

CLC World Resorts & Hotels

ACETO

Orion

Oak HC/FT

Augmentum Capital

Invesco Perpetual

Merlyn Advisors

One Equity Partners

Work highlights

  • Advised Liontrust Asset Management Plc on the acquisition of Neptune Investment Management Limited.
  • Advised Future plc on its class 1 acquisition of TI Media for a total consideration of £140m in cash and its £104m equity fundraise to part fund the acquisition.
  • Advised APG on two significant matters.

Stephenson Harwood

Stephenson Harwood has considerable expertise across the healthcare, corporate real estate, technology, financial services and private equity, and oil and gas sectors. The team has expanded with the hire of three partners, Adam Crossley, Malcolm MacDougall and Richard Coleman, from Charles Russell Speechlys in November 2019. Many of the deals undertaken by the team have significant cross-border elements and the group leverages its international network of offices to advise on these. Andrew Edge is head of the corporate department, advising on public and private M&A, joint ventures and equity fundraisings. Andrew McLean is a name to note for corporate real estate, while Karima Hudson has considerable experience in the healthcare sector.

Practice head(s):

Duncan Stiles; Andrew Edge

Testimonials

‘A team with some very good individuals – a high quality mid-market offering’

Key clients

Pollen Street Secured Lending PLC

Piramal Enterprises Group

Five Arrows Principal Investments

Bowmark Capital LLP

ENGIE

LaSalle Investment Management

GRIT Real Estate Income Group

The Ardonagh Group

3 STEP IT GROUP OY

Snap-On Incorporated

Covanta Holding Corporation

Blue Gem Capital Partners

Salutem Healthcare Limited

Vistra Group

Nexus Tradeco LTD.

Duff & Phelps LLC

Brooks Events Limited

3i Infrastructure plc

Acadia Healthcare

Miton Group

Heerema Marine Contractors

Longmead Capital

Frasers Property

Peterson Group

IV Real Estate

Alvarium Investments

Trafalgar Entertainment

Schroders Real Estate

Firethorn Trust

Work highlights

  • Advised Nexus Tradeco Limited (Nexus), in its role as property manager of Primary Health Properties (PHP), on the merger of PHP and Medicx, creating Britain’s largest healthcare real estate investment trust.
  • Advised Covanta on the formation of a joint venture and the equity funding of Rookery South Energy Recovering Facility, an energy-from-waste plant in Bedfordshire, as part of its cooperation arrangements with the Green Investment Group.
  • Advised Mack Brooks Exhibitions on its sale to Reed Exhibitions (a division of RELX Group plc, the FTSE 100 media group).

Taylor Wessing LLP

Taylor Wessing LLP's corporate team operates as an integrated practice across Europe, the Middle East and Asia, working for large organisations looking to diversify their assets and adapt to disruption. The firm's strong reputation in tech is evident within the M&A group, which has a dedicated corporate technology team, led by Angus Miln,  focused exclusively on M&A and equity fundraisings in the TMC sector. The wider team advises clients on the full range of M&A transactions including  public and private mergers, acquisitions and disposals, leveraged buyouts and public-to-private transactions. The department also has specialist expertise in fund formation, seed investment and multiple fundraises through to growth capital. Emma Danks leads the private equity team and undertakes a wide range of leveraged buyouts and other related transactions alongside James Goold.

Testimonials

Incredibly responsive

Creative and lateral thinking combined with good commercial awareness

Nice to work with

The team is refreshingly accessible and responsive. None of the corporate swagger you get with some other City corporate practices

Key clients

SEGA Europe Limited

Prestbury Investments LLP

Croud

Terra Verde, LDA

Ross Video

CalAmp UK Limited

One.com

Interactive Investor Limited

Attraqt Group plc

Tritax Symmetry Limited (“TSL”)

The shareholders of JHC Systems Ltd

DigiCert

Work highlights

  • Advised SEGA on its acquisition of Two Point Studios Limited, developers of the game “Two Point Hospital”.
  • Advised on the sale of a portfolio of eight hospitals to Medical Properties Trust, by way of the sale of eight SPVs.
  • Advised digital marketing agency, Croud on its £30 million minority investment from mid-market private equity house LDC.

Baker Botts (UK) LLP

Baker Botts (UK) LLP routinely acts on transactions in the tech and energy sectors and has also seen significant expansion in private equity and venture capital. TMT has been another growth area for the M&A department, with the hire of Stuart Blythe from CMS in January 2020. Derek Jones leads the practice and has built a strong track-record advising tech and energy clients over the last two decades. Other key names in the team include David Ramm whose expertise spans tech, life sciences and financial services, and cross-border specialist Paul Exley.

Practice head(s):

Derek Jones

Testimonials

The ability of the Baker Botts London corporate team to pivot easily between run of the mill mid-market LBO/MBO type M&A transactions and those which involve a high degree of complexity is what makes this team unique. The high octane performance of the Baker Botts London corporate group is a function of the strength and depth of experience of its London leadership team’

Derek Jones’ technically excellent yet commercially astute approach means that he is looked to by clients for practical solutions to the most complex and challenging legal and structuring situations’

‘The team is very responsive and appreciates the need to keep both clients and other transaction counsel up-to-date with pertinent deal information.

Key clients

Halliburton

Broadex

Forum Energy Technologies

London Trust Media

The Oak Group

Flex-e-Card Limited (FEC)

Liberty Latin America

Sovcombank

Work highlights

  • Advised Liberty Latin America on the US$104 million sale of Cable & Wireless Seychelles, LLA’s Seychelles-based telecoms business.
  • Advised Halliburton on its US$30 million acquisition of Smart Fibres, a UK-based oilfield services technology company.
  • Advised Flex-e-Card Limited on its sale to EML Payments for a total consideration of £21.6 million.

Bird & Bird LLP

Tech-related M&A work makes up the bulk of Bird & Bird LLP's practice,  and the team is comfortable advising across a wide range of specialist matters ranging from data ownership for a cloud company disposal through to energy regulations for a solar farm. The firm's international network of offices facilitates cross-border M&A, particularly across the US, Asia and Europe. Matt Bonass leads the department, as well as chairing the international energy and utilities sector group. He specialises in public and private mergers and acquisitions, private equity, joint ventures, venture capital and equity capital markets work. Neil Blundell and Simon Allport are other names to note.

Practice head(s):

Matt Bonass

Other key lawyers:

Neil Blundell; Simon Allport

Testimonials

Invaluable advice on when and what to proceed with and retract from

Always working in our best interests

Calm and measured approach to tough situations and excellent at mediating sticking points

Key clients

Gulf Islamic Investments LLC

Piotrek Sosnowski, Kuba Koziej and Kacper Brzozowski

AllofUS

ELE Advanced Technologies

Gamma Telecom Holdings Limited

Just Eat

O’Reilly Media Inc

Tomorrow London Holdings Limited

Jangada Mines plc

Fold7

Work highlights

  • Advised Gulf Islamic Investments LLC on the acquisition of the Priory Court Buildings in central Birmingham.
  • Advising on the sale of the entire issued share capital of Workz Sp. z.o.o, (which provides online resume development services) to BOLD for up to $40m.
  • Advised O’Reilly, a US media company, on its acquisition of Katacoda, a software platform used to train software developers.

Cooley (UK) LLP

Cooley (UK) LLP acts on a wide range of M&A transactions for corporates, private equity houses, venture/growth capital and financial advisers, regularly advising on cross-border and domestic acquisitions, disposals, mergers, joint ventures and investments. The firm's tech and life sciences focus mean it has a strong client list in these areas, with clients also turning to the capital markets team for listings advice. Private equity specialist Ben Shribman joined the practice from Jones Day and brought with him significant experience advising strategic and financial investors. Justin Stock leads the department.

Practice head(s):

Justin Stock

Testimonials

‘In depth knowledge, high availability and pleasant to be with’

‘Michal Berkner is very energetic and competent’

‘Stephen Rosen is pleasant and very capable’

‘Excellent technology expertise gained from representing both buyers and sellers. The M&A team is a standalone function at Cooley rather than generalists who do all corporate work’

‘Justin Stock is great outside counsel. I trust him to keep deals running while also bringing up the issues that I need to focus on as in-house counsel.’

‘The Cooley team works to make the process as seamless as possible so that the client deliverables and interactions are streamlined’

 

Key clients

IRIS

Bottomline Technologies

DocuSign

GIC

Primary Capital

Alcuin Capital

Bavarian Nordic A/S

Clinigen Group

Instil Bio

Prytek

Therachon AG

Brainlabs

ContentSquare

Flyt

Thras.io

WeGotPOP

Work highlights

  • Advised Therachon AG, a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on rare diseases, on its agreement to sell the company to Pfizer for up to $810m.
  • Advised Bavarian Nordic on its acquisition of the manufacturing and global rights to two commercial vaccines.
  • Advised DocuSign on its agreement to acquire Seal Software, one of the leading contract analytics and artificial intelligence technology providers, for $188m.

Mishcon de Reya LLP

While Mishcon de Reya LLP acts for both public and private companies, as well as institutional investors, it has particular strength acting for entrepreneurial/business owners, high net worth and ultra high net worth individuals and family offices.  Richard Tyler is especially active for these clients. Kevin McCarthy has taken over from recruitment sector specialist Nick Davis as practice head, and his practice spans a wide range of sectors including technology/software, hospitality & retail, sport & leisure, media & entertainment and financial services. Ross Bryson  is a name to note for flotations, takeovers and placings, as well as shareholder matters.

Practice head(s):

Kevin McCarthy

Other key lawyers:

Richard Tyler; Ross Bryson

Testimonials

Great responsiveness, holistic thinking and a collaborative approach

Key clients

JPJ Group

World First UK

Advanced Computer Software Group

CH&CO

Fox International

Impellam Group

Golfbreaks

CBRE

Workshare

Creative Car Park Holdings

Work highlights

  • Advising online gaming operator JPJ Group plc on the completion of its c. £490m acquisition of the privately-held Gamesys group
  • Advising Advanced on its acquisition of Dublin-based CareWorks, a provider of Cloud-based case management software for health and social care organisations.
  • Advised international money transfer and currency exchange provider WorldFirst on its sale to fintech company Ant Financial.

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius UK LLP

Morgan, Lewis & Bockius UK LLP counsels sellers and buyers, investors and owners, boards of directors, and sources of financing and intermediaries, including private equity and venture capital funds. The team works across the tech, life sciences, energy and investment management sectors. Within tech, the team is increasingly known for its telecoms work and is also especially experienced advising biotech companies in the life sciences sector.  Olivier Chambord is the name to note for energy, while Thomas Cartwright regularly advises sovereign wealth funds, hedge funds, high-net-worth individuals, and family offices. Practice head Timothy Corbett focuses on public and private equity, debt offerings, international securities law compliance, and disclosure requirements.

Practice head(s):

Timothy Corbett

Testimonials

‘When you find good people and have a trusting relationship you go back to them. Trust and knowing each other makes things quicker’

‘Nick Moore offers great customer service  – he’s very, very trustworthy, reliable and flexible in his approach’

Key clients

Abercrombie & Kent

Lincoln Peak Capital

Yandex

We Soda

General Motors

Grosvenor Capital Management

CNPC

Digital Colony

BrightSphere

Norilsk Nickel

Work highlights

  • Advised Nasdaq-listed Yandex on a complex and novel restructuring of its corporate governance.
  • Advised luxury travel company Abercrombie & Kent on its acquisition of Cox & Kings.
  • Represented Connect Airways on the acquisition of Flybe Group PLC in a recommended cash offer implemented by means of a scheme of arrangement and the separate acquisition of Flybe Limited.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe (UK) LLP

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe (UK) LLP is able to call on the firm's full service offering to expand its service to clients beyond M&A to associated disciplines including tax, acquisition finance, structured finance, employment, competition law and cybersecurity & data privacy. Jinal Shah, who is recognised as a leading individual in this area, has an established  client following across the firm's core sectors of energy, infrastructure, tech and finance. A key area of growth for the team is transactions in the sustainable energy space, with a focus on health tech, bio tech and life sciences. Practice head Shawn Atkinson focuses on advising private equity, venture capital and growth funds, as well as high growth technology companies.

Practice head(s):

Shawn Atkinson

Testimonials

‘Highly responsive team. Good quality of work – very difficult to find fault with their service.’

‘Katie Cotton is an outstanding lawyer. She is technically excellent, versatile and a pleasure to work with. She gets what we are trying to do very quickly with very little explanation’

‘The Orrick team is a leader in their field in growth equity investments.’

Key clients

Marlin Equity Partners

Bioenergy Infrastructure Limited

Canal+ Group

CVC Capital

Infracapital

Michelin

Sigfox

Aptean

Vostok Emerging Finance

Cloudpipes Group

Katacoda

Boostcom Group AS

Vitruvian Partners LLP

Work highlights

  • Advising Michelin on its acquisition of the Masternaut Group from majority owners Summit Partners and Fleetcor Technologies.
  • Advised CANAL+ on its acquisition of ROK Studios from Iroko, one of Nigeria’s largest internet and entertainment companies.
  • Advising Phoenix Global Resources plc (AIM: PGR; BCBA: PGR), on the sale of its 70% interest in certain assets in the Santa Cruz Sur of Argentina to Echo Energy plc.

Osborne Clarke LLP

Osborne Clarke LLP's M&A team increasingly secures work on large cross-border mandates as its international network of offices has grown. The team has significant experience advising clients in the marketing, media, tech, and consultancy sectors, with Tim Birt being the name of note here. Greg Leyshon leads the UK business transactions team, overseeing all M&A, financial institutions, private equity and commercial transactions. Simon Smith heads up the wider corporate group.

Testimonials

‘The team was well organised, pragmatic and focused well on our deal.

‘Mathias Loertscher is an absolute pleasure to deal with. He has an incisive mind and doesn’t let any outstanding issues go missing’

‘Josephine Healy very responsive and tenacious with getting the final details together and our deal over the line’

 

Key clients

La Française des Jeux

?WhatIf! Holdings Limited shareholders

The Entertainer

Just Eat Plc

Onecom Group Limited

Porta Communications plc

Tenzing Private Equity and the other shareholders of FMP Global

Avia Solutions Group

Oakley Advisory Limited

Jellyfish Group Limited

Barcroft Studios Limited

Miniclip Group SA

Goldman Sachs

Sellers of FleetEurope

HH Global Group Limited

Marlin Equity Partners

Computershare

Work highlights

  • Advised La Française des Jeux (the French state lottery) on its acquisition of Sporting Solutions Group.
  • Advised ?What If! on its sale to Accenture.
  • Advised The Entertainer on the acquisition of the UK and international business and assets of the Early Learning Centre (ELC) from Mothercare Plc.

Watson Farley & Williams LLP

Watson Farley & Williams LLP is particularly strong in the energy and infrastructure sector, where the team specialises in conventional power and renewables. Other areas in which the practice has bench strength include maritime, transport, natural resources and real estate. The bulk of the work undertaken by the team has a cross-border element, with the firm making use of its 14 offices outside the UK, as well as a network of local counsel, to advise on these transactions. Chris Kilburn leads the corporate group and specialises in the energy, mining and commodities sectors. Jan Mellmann and Daniel Saunders  are also names to note.

Practice head(s):

Chris Kilburn

Other key lawyers:

Jan Mellmann; Daniel Saunders

Testimonials

‘This firm really thinks of all possibilities and has solutions to everything.’

‘Really easy to work with, easy to get hold of, very professional and I would highly recommend them.’

‘WFW have been extremely entrepreneurial in their approach and have assisted our business with insights we did not foresee – this has meant huge savings and better negotiations.’

‘They have helped with the cashflow management of billings, and have been willing to take a longer term view on the project and an upside in the success.’

‘Chris Kilburn has been very flexible with us, especially during Covid, helping guide us through the transaction, and showing a willingness to work to ensure a great outcome for all parties involved.’

Key clients

Rheinmetall AG

Azimuth Group

Ørsted

Lightsource Renewable Energy

Coro Energy

Maas Capital

Chaarat Gold

Star Bulk Carriers Corp

NYK (Europe) Ltd

Bondcare

Work highlights

  • Advised Galloper Wind Farm Limited on its £281.8m sale of the transmission assets relating to the 353 MW Galloper Wind Farm to Diamond Transmission Partners pursuant to the Offshore Transmission Owner (“OFTO”) regime.
  • Advising NASDAQ listed Star Bulk, a global shipping company providing worldwide seaborne transportation of dry bulk cargoes, on the acquisition of 11 vessels from Delphin Shipping LLC in a shares and cash transaction.
  • Advised Bondcare Care Homes on its acquisition of the care home business and group HQ of Darrington Healthcare Limited.

Burges Salmon LLP

Burges Salmon LLP is extremely active in the energy sector, particularly in the areas of nuclear power and renewables. Another strong sector specialism for the corporate team is in food and drink, as well as hotels & leisure, education and financial services.  Richard Spink leads the corporate team and specialises in private equity, domestic and cross border mergers and acquisitions, as well as equity capital markets work. Rupert Weston is a name to note for corporate finance.

Practice head(s):

Richard Spink; Rupert Weston

Other key lawyers:

Mark Shepherd; Dominic Davies

Testimonials

The team personifies strength in depth. Highly experienced partners work very well together providing coherent and balanced advice. The quality of associates and junior lawyers is testament to the high quality of training provided to the firm.

Mark Shepherd and Dominic Davies are standout individuals that I have worked with recently. Each provides highly experienced legal support in a commercial and friendly way

A really strong and commercially-focused team who will work tirelessly to get the deal over the line.

Rupert Weston gives very clear and pragmatic advice, and is always willing to roll his sleeves up to push the deal over the line. It’s great to have him in your corner when negotiating an M&A deal.

Key clients

Premier Asset Management Group plc

Virgin Group

John Lewis Partnership

Hamilton Hotel Partners

FirstGroup plc

University of Oxford

Phillips 66

Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy/UKRI

ITM Power plc

SCISYS Group plc

Work highlights

  • Advising Premier Miton Group on the recommended £98 million all-share merger between Premier and Miton Group.
  • Acting for pan-European software and IT services company, SCISYS Group, in connection with its £78.9 million takeover by the CGI Group, one of world’s largest independent IT professional services groups.
  • Advising ITM Power, a leading manufacturer of hydrogen energy solutions, on a £58.8 million fundraising from Linde UK (a new strategic investor), existing and new institutional investors, and an open offer, along with advising the client on its innovative joint venture with Linde to provide green hydrogen to large-scale industrial projects.

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP  has a strong reputation in the pharmaceutical, life sciences, tech and energy industries. Increasingly, the practice acts on deals within the digital health sector, advising on both buy and sell side public and private M&A transactions. Some of the broader corporate deals worked on by the team have strong elements of IP attached to them, such as licensing rights, and the firm's strong IP practice allows them to form a multi-disciplinary deal team on these matters. Gregor Frizzell leads the EMEA corporate practice and focuses much of his practice on cross-border M&A and complex joint ventures and collaborations.

Practice head(s):

Gregor Frizzell

Other key lawyers:

Simon Amies; Paul Claydon

Testimonials

Knowledge of the subject matter and ability to translate complex and diverse topics into language a management team can readily understand.

A solid, pragmatic London-based M&A team that works efficiently. Excellent value for money.

Gregor Frizell has been our go-to partner for several UK transactions and always delivers quality service. He has a delicate negotiating touch and knows how to get a deal done.

Key clients

AstraZeneca

BenevolentAI

Elanco Animal Health

GammaDelta Therapeutics

Horizon Discovery Group plc

Johnson & Johnson

Merck & Co., Inc.

Work highlights

  • Advised AstraZeneca in connection with the sale and licence of the commercial rights to Seroquel  and Seroquel XR  in Europe and Russia to German pharmaceutical company Cheplapharm Arzneimittel GmbH.
  • Advised founders of The Foundry in connection with the sale of the company to US-based Roper Technologies, Inc. in an all-cash transaction valued at £410 million.
  • Advised Breath Therapeutics in its sale to Zambon, a multinational pharmaceutical company focused on innovation and development, for an up-front payment of €140 million and up to an additional €360 million subject to regulatory and sales milestones.

Goodwin

Rather than a standalone M&A group, Goodwin's corporate lawyers are split across the firm's key sectors of real estate, life sciences, tech and private equity. Experienced in both public and private M&A, the team is also able to lean on the network of global offices to advise on significant cross-border and multi-jurisdiction mandates. The team is jointly led by real estate specialists Joe Conder and David Evans , and life sciences expert Graham Defries.

Key clients

BentallGreenOak

DWS

Informa Group Limited

London Square

Medical Properties Trust

FFI Holdings Plc

Monotype Imaging Inc

Gadeta BY

Staten Biotechnology BV

Work highlights

  • Advised long-standing client, Medical Properties Trust, on the acquisition of a corporate structure which ultimately owns a portfolio of 30 acute care hospital facilities, valued at approximately £1.5 billion.
  • Advised long standing client BentallGreenOak on the exchange of contracts on the sale of a portfolio of 42 premium logistics assets across four Western European jurisdictions (France, Spain, Italy and Netherlands) for a consideration of around €1.2 billion, via a sale of a structure involving regulated and unregulated, listed and private vehicles.
  • Advised Informa Group Limited, on its joint venture with, and minority investment in, Founders Forum LLP.

Gowling WLG

Gowling WLG has a full service corporate group working on both national and international transactions. The team is experienced in the real estate, life sciences, healthcare, energy and manufacturing sectors and is active on transactions in Africa, China, Eastern Europe, the CIS, India, the Middle East, Russia and Singapore. Sunil Kakkad leads the corporate group and has 30 years' experience advising a variety of clients on the full range of M&A work.

Practice head(s):

Sunil Kakkad

Other key lawyers:

Gareth Baker; Andy Stylianou

Key clients

Wilmington Plc

Bushveld Minerals

Cairngorm Capital

H&T Group plc

Entanet Holdings Ltd.

Equiom Group

Star Capital Partners

Brockwell Energy Limited

Mobeus Equity Partners LLP

Highland Gold Mining

Circle Holdings plc

Active Assistance (UK) Group

The Montreux Healthcare Fund plc

Mytrah Energy Limited

Codemasters Group Holdings plc

Work highlights

  • Advised Co-op Energy, part of The Midcounties Co-operative, on a deal to create a new strategic energy partnership with Octopus Energy.
  • Advised leading video games maker Codemasters on its acquisition of racing simulation specialists, Slightly Mad Studios Pte, Ltd..
  • Advised Bushveld Minerals on its acquisition, though its South African subsidiary, Bushveld Vanchem Proprietary Limited, of Vanchem Vanadium Products.

HFW

HFW's UK corporate team handles both domestic and cross-border deals, with the London practice working closely with the firm's 20 international offices. The department has a strong sector specialism in transport - specifically shipping, aviation and logistics - as well as expertise in ports, energy and resources. Alistair Mackie leads the practice and advises on M&A deals in infrastructure, energy and mining.

Practice head(s):

Alistair Mackie

Other key lawyers:

Alex Kyriakoulis; Nick Hutton

Testimonials

Knowledgeable and communicative  and  experienced in a wide range of transactions and markets’ 

‘Quick and responsive, commercially minded and always exploring for better commercial result for clients

The team at HFW is very efficient and they know their stuff. They have found a hard-to-achieve and enviable “sweet spot” in combining Magic Circle-level expertise with unparalleled industry knowledge, whilst managing to feel like an extension of our own in-house legal department in terms of ease of co-operation.

 Alex Kyriakoulis is highly incisive, has incredible experience, and adroitly combines creativity with pragmatism when analysing situations and arriving at/recommending solutions.  He uses his intellect and lucidity in an objective manner, rather than to score points against the other side for the sake of it. I hope he never retires

Key clients

Regal Petroleum plc

WH Ireland Group plc

Singapore Marine Pte Ltd/Swiss Marine

Victoria Group AD and existing shareholders

doValue

Thomas Miller Investment Holdings Limited

The Underwriter Group Limited

Markerstudy Holdings Limited

Manitou BF SA

CIMC Vehicle

Work highlights

  • Advised Singapore Marine Ltd on its $40m fundraising and $110m acquisition of Swiss marine group.
  • Advising Italy’s largest loan recovery firm doValue in its bid to acquire Eurobank’s loan servicing unit.
  • Advising on the acquisition of the Co-op’s insurance underwriting business.

K&L Gates LLP

The K&L Gates LLP  corporate team advises clients across the firm's core sectors such as tech, real estate, industrials, sport, leisure, energy, infrastructure and resources. With a client list dominated by US corporates, the group advises on a range of cross-border acquisitions and divestitures in the UK and Europe. Tech and energy specialist Paul Tetlow leads the practice and works alongside fintech expert Tom Wallace. John Elgar is a name to note for his work in sport, leisure and gaming.

Practice head(s):

Paul Tetlow

Other key lawyers:

John Elgar; Tom Wallace

Key clients

Confluence Technologies, Inc.

Fiserv

D. D. Williamson & Co., Inc.

Arena Racing Corporation Limited (ARC)

Spynsol Limited and Sports Tech Holding Limited

MXLG Intermediate Holdings Limited

Tax Systems plc

Faroe Petroleum Plc (now DNO North Sea)

Fairford Holdings UK AB

BARBRI

Naked Wines Plc

Management team of Weir Group Plc’s Flow Control division

Performance Horizon Group Limited t/a Partnerize

Work highlights

  • Advised Confluence Technologies, Inc. on its recommended cash offer for StatPro Group plc (“StatPro”) by Ceres Bidco Limited (“Bidco”) a wholly owned subsidiary of Confluence Technologies, Inc.
  • Advised First Data Corporation (now Fiserv) on its joint venture with Allied Irish Bank plc to acquire Payzone. Payzone is Ireland’s largest consumer payments network.
  • Advised D.D. Williamson & Co., Inc, a  food colouring manufacturer, in its acquisition of DuPont’s natural colours business.

RPC

RPC advises on the full spectrum of M&A work, with particular specialisms in the retail, tech and insurance sectors. Much of the insurance work is private equity driven, an area in which the firm has seen considerable growth alongside its venture capital practice. The corporate group features a dedicated due diligence team, modelled on the big 4 accountants' transactions service teams. Karen Hendy leads the department and is particularly skilled in takeovers, restructurings and joint ventures.

Practice head(s):

Karen Hendy

Other key lawyers:

Tim Anderson; James Mee

Testimonials

‘A commercially minded and responsive team’

‘High quality associates and partners who are able to tailor their approach to the matters at hand and provide targeted advice’

Key clients

Ebury Partners

Stella McCartney

Sierra Nevada Corporation

Paine Schwartz Partners

Sports Direct

RSA Insurance Group

Aviva

Zebra (aka Tiger Retail)

Arcadis

Dialog Semiconductor

Work highlights

  • Advised Ebury Partners on its £350m strategic investment arrangement with Santander.
  • Advised Stella McCartney on the buyout of her existing joint venture with Kering and the subsequent entry into a new arrangement with LVMH Moët Hennessy – Louis Vuitton.
  • Advised Sports Direct on a number of Takeover Code transactions, including in relation to public bids for GAME Digital, Findel and Goals Soccer Centres.

Arnold & Porter

Arnold & Porter advises on M&A and joint ventures both domestically and cross border, with the team advising buyers, sellers, venture capitalists, lenders, financial advisers, management teams and private equity and hedge funds. The team is particularly experienced in the life sciences sector and has seen significant growth in work in the cannabis sector. Jeremy Willcocks leads the practice, advising on share and asset sales, IPOs, public takeovers, shareholder disputes, and joint ventures.

Practice head(s):

Jeremy Willcocks

Testimonials

The commercial and diligent nature of the team make it an enormously valuable resource to anyone looking at executing a transaction. Their market experience is incredibly useful as a sounding board and their technical expertise is very high.  These characteristics, combined with an approachable, good-humoured and extremely hard-working ethos, make working with the team an enormously enjoyable and rewarding experience.

Jeremy Willcocks leads his team “from the front” and has surrounded himself with very complimentary and equally high performing team members.

Key clients

McArthurGlen

Telus International

GVS Filter Technology

Norgine

Touchlight Genetics

SpePharm

Omega Healthcare Investors

Edison Global Limited

Xilinx

Cognizant Technology Solutions

Crypta Labs Limited

IronNet Cybersecurity

Onex Corporation

Visa Inc.

OneView Commerce plc

Work highlights

  • Acted for TELUS Corporation on its  acquisition of UK based software solutions company, Muddy Boots.
  • Acted for the founders and owners of Broadberry Data Systems Limited, a leading manufacturer of high-end custom rackmount servers, storage servers and high-performance workstations, in its sale to Source Code LLC.

Clyde & Co LLP

Clyde & Co LLP typically advises on corporate compliance, joint ventures and strategic alliances for clients in the real estate, marine, industrial, energy and natural resources sectors. The practice is also focused on new and emerging markets internationally, with many transactions featuring a cross-border element. Simon Gamblin leads the corporate and commercial team and has international and domestic corporate finance expertise, including substantial experience advising on complex public and private mergers and acquisitions.

Practice head(s):

Simon Gamblin

Key clients

Liberty House Group

P&O Maritime BV

GeoAmey PECS Limited

Be Living Holdings Ltd (BE)

Purplexed LLP

Oaktree Capital Management

SIMEC UK Energy Holdings Limited

Anglo International Shipping Group Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted for Be Living Holdings Ltd on the disposal of a majority stake in its Be Living residential development business to Ecoworld Berhad.
  • Advising SIMEC on sales of the entire issued share capital of SIMEC Uskmouth Power Limited, the owner of a coal fired power station in Newport, to Atlantis Resources Limited.
  • Advised on the sale of Arivia SA to Upfield B.V.

Fieldfisher

Fieldfisher's M&A team is led in London by Neil Matthews, who works as part of a group that focuses on sectors including tech; media production; telecoms; energy; financial services; life sciences and hotels & leisure. The practice has added lateral partners in areas such as energy in recent years and has also grown its deal volume, with many of its deals also now having a cross-border element.  Andrew Blankfield is another key part of the London offering.

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP's London M&A team has significant expertise in the tech, energy, petrochemicals, natural resources and financial services sectors, acting on both domestic and international transactions. Energy specialist Gavin Watson joined the team in January 2019 and is experienced advising on midstream and downstream transactions for clients operating in gas, LNG and petrochemicals. James Campbell leads the corporate and securities group and has a practice focused on M&A, corporate finance, joint ventures, IPOs, private equity and venture capital.

Practice head(s):

James Campbell

Other key lawyers:

Gavin Watson

Key clients

GlobalVoice A.S.

Borealis AG

Cavendish Kinetics, Inc.

Chevron Global Energy Inc.

Chevron Technology Ventures LLC

EBRD – European Bank for Reconstruction and Development

RhythmOne plc

Upland Software, Inc.

Work highlights

  • Acted for RhythmOne in its agreed merger of equals with Taptica plc
  • Represented Globalvoice AS on its capital raise by a strategic investor.
  • Represented Upland Software, Inc. on its acquisition of Altify Ireland Limited.