Listed funds in London

Gowling WLG

Gowling WLG offers bespoke expertise in the closed-ended listed funds space, advising a number of major asset managers, investment banks and brokers. The team has maintained its heavy involvement in IPOs despite a difficult year for capital markets, and it works with funds throughout their lifecycle, alongside specialist tax and regulatory advice. The team is led by Nick Heather, a well-regarded and experienced closed-ended funds practitioner, who advises top-level investment houses and banks. Kristian Rogers specialises in large-scale capital raisings and fund restructurings, while John Reed and Oliver Riley are experienced in secondary transactions and fund structuring work. Principal associate Kate Seabourne continues to play a key role in leading IPOs and secondary fundraises. Another principal associate to note is Laura Dobie, who has notable in-house investment banking expertise from a secondment at Investec.

Practice head(s):

Nick Heather

Other key lawyers:

John Reed; Oliver Riley; Kristian Rogers; Kate Seabourne; Emily Troubridge; Laura Dobie

Testimonials

Very strong and committed performance from Nick Heather.

Key clients

Cordiant Digital Infrastructure Limited

Triple Point Energy Efficiency Infrastructure Company plc

Round Hill Music Royalty Fund Limited

Downing Renewables & Infrastructure Trust plc

Temple Bar Investment Trust PLC

Octopus Renewables Infrastructure Trust plc

CEIBA Investment Limited

Numis Securities plc

Winterflood Securities Limited

Peel Hunt LLP

Jefferies International Limited

Nplus1 Singer Capital Markets Limited

Panmure Gordon (UK) LLP

Stifel Nicolaus Europe Limited

Urban Logistics REIT plc

Empiric Student Property plc

GCP Student Living plc

GCP Asset Backed Income Fund Limited

AEW UK REIT PLC

Draper Esprit plc

BlackRock Frontiers Investment Trust plc

BlackRock North American Investment Trust plc

BlackRock Energy and Resources Income Trust plc

J.P. Morgan Cazenove

Odyssean Investment Trust plc

Tufton Oceanic Assets Limited

Investec Bank plc

Mercia Asset Management plc

RM Secured Direct Lending plc

RBC Europe Limited

Chenavari Toro Income Fund Limi

Work highlights

  • Advised Round Hill on the publication of a prospectus and supplementary prospectus relating to its $282m IPO on the specialist fund segment of the main market of the London Stock Exchange.
  • Advised Downing on the publication of a prospectus relating to its £122.5m IPO on the premium segment of the main market of the London Stock Exchange.
  • Advised Cordiant on the publication of a prospectus relating to its £370m IPO on the specialist fund segment of the main market of the London Stock Exchange.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP has remained active, despite there being a difficult environment for fund IPOs, with it advising on a number of successful raisings during 2020. Its work included innovative and market-leading arrangements such as spin-outs and fund restructurings, as well as issuances for longstanding institutional clients. The firm's expertise in closed-ended funds is well-established, with other areas of strength including capital structures and international (particularly US) regulatory issues. The team is led by Tim West, who advises on fund launches, restructurings and secondary capital raisings for major clients. Nigel Farr has a wealth of experience in closed-ended funds work, including raisings, secondaries and regulatory compliance matters. Nish Dissanayake is equally active in fund formation and regulatory matters, with noticeable capabilities in handling regulations such as AIFMD and MiFID II.

Practice head(s):

Tim West

Other key lawyers:

Nigel Farr; Nish Dissanayake

Testimonials

‘Arguably the best resourced and most experienced firm in the listed funds sector. Numerous experienced personnel. Arguably the best quality and level of service in the sector – several highly qualified partners and several very experienced individuals below partner level.’

‘Top tier team in the sector. Strong commercial/technical advice from a team which is well-resourced at all levels.’

‘Nigel Farr – and extremely experienced senior lawyer in the listed funds sector who has been at the forefront of many structural innovations.’

Tim West – very approachable and commercial lawyer, with a careful and methodical approach.’

Key clients

Aberdeen Emerging Markets Investment Company

Aberdeen Frontier Markets Investment Company

Amedeo Air Four Plus

Apax Global Alpha

Baillie Gifford US Growth Trust

BioPharma Credit

BlackRock Greater Europe Investment Trust

BlackRock World Mining Trust

Blackstone / GSO Loan Financing

Boussard & Gavaudan Holdings

Brunner Investment Trust

Carador Income Fund

CVC Credit Partners European Opportunities

Doric Nimrod Air One

Doric Nimrod Air Two

Doric Nimrod Air Three

DRI Capital Inc

Gabelli Merger Plus+

HarbourVest Global Private Equity

Henderson European Focus Trust

Highbridge Tactical Credit Fund

Hipgnosis Songs Fund

Impax Environmental Markets

India Capital Growth Fund

JPEL Private Equity

JP Morgan American Investment Trust

JPMorgan Asian Investment Trust

JPMorgan Elect

JPMorgan Global Core Real Assets

Marble Point Loan Financing

Menhaden plc

Mercantile Investment Trust

Merchants Trust

NB Distressed Debt Income Fund

NB Global Floating Rate Income F

Work highlights

  • Advised Hipgnosis Songs Fund Limited as UK and US securities counsel on its recently published prospectus in connection with a proposed initial issue and subsequent placings of, in aggregate, up to 1.5 billion shares.
  • Advised The Schiehallion Fund Limited on its secondary fund raise targeting in excess of $500m
  • Advised SDCL Energy Efficiency Income Trust plc on its publication of a prospectus in June 2020, in respect of the launch of an initial issue (comprising a placing and offer for subscription) and subsequent placing programme.

Stephenson Harwood

Stephenson Harwood remains a go-to firm for institutional investment managers, advising high-profile closed-ended funds on structuring and secondaries transactions, as well as leading on a number of major IPOs in what has been a difficult market for equity raisings. Standout work has included REIT and social impact fund formations, as well as EU, Brexit and ESG-related regulatory compliance advice. The team is led by William Saunders, who remains a standout figure in the market, handling major IPOs and complex fund restructurings. Alex Haynes handles formation and structuring mandates for UK and offshore funds, while the ‘technically strong‘ Elizabeth Field is noted for her work on alternative equity raisings, fund reconstruction and M&A. Carolyn Harris was promoted to partner in mid-2021. Also recommended are senior associates Kate LongmanAlexa Whitehead and Nicholas Horton.

Practice head(s):

William Saunders

Other key lawyers:

Alex Haynes; Carolyn Hall; Elizabeth Field; Kate Longman; Alexa Longman

Testimonials

The team is exceptional, with excellent sector knowledge and fantastic investment and development of their trainees and more junior lawyers. The diversity in the team is also very welcome. I feel in very good hands when Stephenson Harwood are acting for us.

Partners William Saunders and Alex Haynes are both exceptional. They are very commercial, easy to work with and I know I can rely on them and their advice in difficult situations. Nick Horton and Kate Longman are standout senior associates and a pleasure to work with.

The team is quite simply excellent, giving the highest quality advice and superb client service. Partners and associates are a pleasure to deal with and are evidently very knowledgeable and current in their areas of expertise.

William Saunders is a stand-out partner on all fronts. Very quick to grasp and analyse the key issues, and with a very good board room presence.

Liz Field is technically very strong, extremely tenacious and ensures that the firm’s advice is clear and robust.

Key clients

Aberdeen UK Tracker Trust

Acorn Income Fund Limited

Akur Limited

Allianz Global Investors GmbH

Allianz Technology Trust PLC

Alternative Asset Opportunities PCC Limited

Alternative Credit Investments plc

Alternative Liquidity Fund Limited

Alvarium RE Limited

Aseana Properties Limited

Ashoka India Equity Investment Trust plc

Atlantis Japan Growth Fund Limited

Augmentum Capital LLP

Augmentum Fintech plc

AVI Japan Opportunity Trust plc

BB Healthcare Trust plc

Big Society Capital Limited

BDO LLP

BlackRock Income & Growth Investment Trust plc

BlackRock Throgmorton Trust plc

Camper & Nicholsons Marina Investments Limited

Cantor Fitzgerald Europe

CC Japan Income & Growth Trust plc

Cenkos Securities plc

City of London Investment Trust plc

Coupland Cardiff Asset Management

Dragon Capital Limited

Draper Esprit VCT plc

Eighteen East Capital Limited

European Opportunities Trust plc

European Real Estate Investment Trust Limited

Fair Oaks Income Limited

finnCap

Work highlights

  • Advised Home REIT plc on its £240.5m IPO on the London Stock Exchange.
  • Advised Schroders and its joint venture partner, Big Society Capital, on the launch of Schroder BSC Social Impact Trust, the UK’s first social impact investment trust.
  • Advised Alternative Credit Investmentson a possible cash offer by funds advised by Waterfall Asset Management,  and the termination of ACI’s investment manager.

CMS

CMS has a strong track record acting for funds, fund managers and banks, among other clients. It focuses on fund launches and equity raisings across a wide range of asset classes, with notable expertise in the media, energy and life sciences sectors, among other areas. The team is led by consultant Cathy Pitt, who has a strong focus on listed funds, and advises an array of fund managers and investment banks. Alasdair Steele advises managers on equity raisings, and he also handles bank-side matters.  Kristy Duane  is active in corporate finance transactions, while Jack Shepherd specialises in fund restructurings.

Practice head(s):

Cathy Pitt

Other key lawyers:

Alasdair Steele; Kristy Duane; Jack Shepherd

Key clients

Aquila European Renewables Income Fund plc

KKV Secured Loan Fund

Sequoia Economic Infrastructure Fund Limited

LMS Capital plc

Jefferies International

Peel Hunt

Stifel Europe

JP Morgan Cazenove

Templeton Emerging Markets Investment Trust

Invesco Perpetual

Securities Trust of Scotland

BMO Private Equity Investment Trust

Work highlights

  • Advising premium listed investment company, Aquila European Renewables Income Fund, on its placing and open offer and placing programme to issue up to 693 million ordinary shares.
  • Advising Sequoia Economic Infrastructure Fund on a £300m placing, open offer and offer for subscription combined with a share issuance programme of up to a further £300m.
  • Advising Peel Hunt as Nominated Adviser, Broker and Bookrunner on a share placing by Warehouse REIT plc with existing and new investors, raising gross proceeds of approximately £45.9m.

Dentons

Dentons fields strong teams in London and Edinburgh, which advise major asset managers on IPOs and secondary equity raisings, as well as complex regulatory and fund management issues. Of particular note is the firm's work on fund mergers via Section 110 documentation, and changes in investment management, which often involve multijurisdictional elements. Guy Norfolk in London is an experienced figure within the investment trust space. He co-heads the practice with 'knowledgable' Edinburgh-based partner Claire Armstrong, who has a strong focus on undertaking advisory and transactional work for closed-ended funds. Senior associate Owen McLennan handles a broad range of primary and secondary fund structurings and transactional matters.

Practice head(s):

Guy Norfolk; Claire Armstrong

Other key lawyers:

Owen McLennan

Testimonials

We use Dentons as a firm because of their extensive knowledge of the listed funds sector together with their all round excellent team.

Guy Norfolk heads up the listed funds team and has a wide an extensive knowledge of the sector. Very pragmatic and able to be results focused.

Claire Armstrong – Very knowledgeable and key to running complex projects.

Key clients

Baillie Gifford & Co

Aberdeen Standard Investments

Invesco

Murray Income Trust

The PRS REIT

The Edinburgh Investment Trust

Hansa Investment Company

Jupiter US Smaller Companies

Invesco Select Trust

Invesco Enhanced Income

City Merchants High Yield Trust

Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust

Martin Currie Global Portfolio Trust

CQS New City High Yield Fund

CQS Natural Resources Growth and Income

Aberdeen New Thai Investment Trust

Aberdeen Asian Income Fund

Aberdeen Japan Income Trust

Shires Income

Aberdeen Standard Asia Focus

Aberdeen New Dawn Investment Trust

North American Income Trust

Downing Strategic Micro-Cap Investment Trust

Work highlights

  • Advised Murray Income Trust, one of the Aberdeen Standard managed investment companies on its merger with Perpetual Income and Growth Trust.
  • Advising The PRS REIT on its migration from the Specialist Fund Segment to the Premium Segment of the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange.
  • Advising on the change of its manager from Jupiter Asset Management to Brown Advisory, and all related transaction documentation.

Hogan Lovells International LLP

Hogan Lovells International LLP advises institutional fund managers on listings in the UK, as well as Luxembourg, Channel Island, Irish and Bermuda listings. The team, which undertakes a mix of issuer and underwriter work, was heavily involved in listing renewable energy and infrastructure products in 2020. The team is led by Erik Jamieson, who has great experience of listings in key jurisdictions. Another name to note is Jonathan Baird, who is qualified in New York and Illinois, as well as England and Wales. Jeremy Pickles is noted for his infrastructure, reinsurance and real estate expertise, advising on a number of high-value listings within these asset classes.

Practice head(s):

Erik Jamieson

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan Baird; Jeremy Pickles

Key clients

3i Infrastructure Limited

Numis Securities Limited

Investec Bank Plc

Liberum Securities Limited

JLEN Environmental Assets Limited

Stifel Nicolaus (Europe) Limited

Life Settlement Assets PLC

Clipstone Industrial PLC

HICL Infrastructure Company PLC

International Public Partnerships Limited

JP Morgan Cazenove

Work highlights

  • Advised Investec as sponsor, and Investec and Liberum as joint bookrunners, on a number of capital raises by The Renewables Infrastructure Group Limited.
  • Advised Numis as sponsor, and Numis and Kempen as joint bookrunners, on a share issuance programme by Aquila European Renewables Income Fund.
  • Advised JLEN Environmental Assets Group on its placing of new shares and admission to the premium segment of the main market of the London Stock Exchange.

Norton Rose Fulbright

Norton Rose Fulbright advises asset managers (including the investment arms of a number of financial institutions) on fund formation, regulatory issues and investments. It also has an active listed fundraising practice, which handles IPOs on key exchanges. The team advises funds focused on asset classes including energy, infrastructure and transport, alongside debt and insurance products. Practice head Richard Sheen has a strong track record in asset management and equity capital markets work. Ian Fox and counsel Margaret Simcock are other key individuals in the group.

Practice head(s):

Richard Sheen

Other key lawyers:

Ian Fox; Margaret Simcock

Testimonials

Very good expert knowledge on all aspects of the investment funds market.

I use Ian Fox mainly. He has a long track record of providing practical and commercial advice on investment trusts. A real trusted adviser.

Key clients

JP Morgan Cazenove Limited

Starwood European Real Estate Finance Limited

Schroder Real Estate Investment Management

JPMorgan Income & Growth Investment Trust plc

JPMorgan Elect plc

Numis Securities Limited

The Renewables Infrastructure Group Limited

Macau Property Opportunities Fund

Trian Investors 1 Limited

Jefferies International Limited

Crystal Amber Fund

Work highlights

  • Advising RBC (as global co-ordinator, sole bookrunner and joint financial adviser), Winterflood (as co-lead manager) and Akur (as joint financial adviser) on the IPO of Triple Point Energy Efficiency Infrastructure Company PLC on its admission to the Specialist Fund Segment of the London Stock Exchange.
  • Advised Taylor Maritime Investments Limited on its IPO to the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange.
  • Advised on the Main Market IPO of Ecofin U.S. Renewables Infrastructure Trust PLC.

Travers Smith LLP

Travers Smith LLP advises fund managers, financial investors and bookrunners on large-scale IPOs, fund operational matters and reorganisations, as well as secondary transactions. The team also provides regulatory support on Brexit-related issues and matters connected with the Channel Islands, among other areas. The team is led by Aaron Stocks, who has extensive expertise in the listed funds space, regularly advising on high-value IPOs and placings. Will Normand specialises in closed-ended funds, and is a regular contributor to thought leadership on regulatory and jurisdictional issues, as well as advising a diverse range of clients on issuances and fund launches.

Practice head(s):

Aaron Stocks

Other key lawyers:

Will Normand

Testimonials

Strong blend of client management with commercial and technical advice.

From what I can see the team demonstrate that they are thought leaders in the funds space. The quality of the content that they put out is amazing.

Will Normand is excellent. No nonsense, commercial advice delivered in a friendly manner.

Key clients

Alternative Income REIT plc

Assura plc

Chrysalis Investments Limited

Franklin Templeton

Great Point Entertainment Income Trust plc

Impact Healthcare REIT

Investec Bank

Jefferies

JPEL Private Equity Limited

Literacy Capital plc

Marwyn Investment Management LLP

N+1 Singer

Numis Securities Limited

RBC Europe Limited

Shore Capital

Smithson Investment Trust plc

Stifel Nicolaus Europe Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising Shore Capital and Corporate Limited and Shore Capital Stockbrokers Limited as bookrunner and financial advisor on the launch of Nippon Active Value Fund plc.
  • Advising Jefferies and Numis on the Official List IPO of DRI Healthcare Plc.
  • Advised RBC Capital Markets as sponsor and joint bookrunner and Jefferies International Limited as joint bookrunner on the placing of £400m of Ordinary Shares in Greencoat UK Wind PLC.

Slaughter and May

Practice head(s):

Paul Dickson; Nick Pacheco

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP advises institutional and boutique fund managers on fund structuring and launches, equity raisings and regulatory issues. Its team in London regularly works with its Luxembourg and Swiss offices on international mandates. The team also has a notable broker-side practice, advising on placement agreements and platform issues. The practice is jointly led by David Hicks and Victoria Younghusband, who regularly advises on complex regulatory issues, and has expertise in open and closed-ended funds investing in a variety of asset classes.

Practice head(s):

David Hicks; Victoria Younghusband

Key clients

The Biotech Growth Trust

Fidelity Asian Values

Fidelity China Special Situations

Fidelity European Trust

Fidelity Japan Trust

Fidelity Special Values

Shore Capital

Liberum Securities

Vina Capital Investment Management Limited

India Capital Growth Fund

Circle Property plc

Duke Royalty

Chelverton Growth Trust

Chelverton UK Dividend Trust

Work highlights

  • Advised India Capital Growth Fund on an innovative redemption facility conditional on the passing of a continuation resolution, giving the Fund the opportunity of 18 months to demonstrate out-performance after a period of under-performance
  • Advised Shore Capital as nominated adviser, broker and bookrunner on two fundraising for AIM-listed investing company, Helios Underwriting Plc.
  • Advising Dalton Capital Holdings on the sale of its boutique asset manager UK subsidiary to Polar Capital Holdings, manager of three listed investment companies.

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP offers extensive expertise in alternative investment and closed-ended funds matters, advising a wide range of funds continuously on IPOs and secondary raisings, strategy (including ESG considerations) and regulatory issues. Practice head Ronald Paterson has great experience of fund launches across a variety of asset classes, as well as handling secondaries transactions. Principal associate Sarah Burnside is also active in equity raisings and regulatory matters.

Practice head(s):

Ronald Paterson

Other key lawyers:

Sarah Burnside

Testimonials

A good, solid practice with excellent knowledge of listed companies and their needs.

The team has wide knowledge and depth to its expertise around investment funds, and was able to guide us through a minefield of regulations and requirements for what was a complicated structure, bringing in other departments’ expertise when required.

The individuals were always approachable at any time, making us feel valued as clients. They offered significant hand holding during the project. Specific associates worth mentioning are Sarah Burnside and Ronald Paterson.

The team, while smaller than some competing legal advisers in the listed investment company space, has some very experienced members who work diligently and promptly on transactions and provide detailed and professional advice.

Strong team and detailed background knowledge.

Our main contact is Sarah Burnside, Sarah is always approachable and ready to assist with any queries that we may have.

Dedication and capacity to move at pace.

Key clients

Gresham House Energy Storage Fund PLC

UK Mortgages Limited

VH Global Sustainable Energy Opportunities plc

Reed Smith LLP

Reed Smith LLP advises on a diverse range of cross-border fundraisings and transactions for closed-ended investment funds in a number of asset classes, including listed REITs. It also has a strong niche in VCT work. The team is led by specialist listed funds practitioner Delphine Currie, who advises issuers and bookrunners on complex raisings, and offers significant cross-border regulatory expertise for both the EU and US. Counsel Trish O’Donnell, who divides her time between London and New York, specialises in handling US securities placements for financial services clients.

Practice head(s):

Delphine Currie

Other key lawyers:

Trish O’Donnell

Testimonials

‘Technically strong and responsive – they give pragmatic advice and are partner-led.’

‘Excellent client service – always prompt turnaround of work and the team make themselves available at very short notice.’

‘Delphine Currie is very assured and capable in dealing with a wide variety of issues we have raised.’