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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 the United Kingdon, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for eight years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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United Kingdom > West Midlands > Corporate and commercial > Corporate tax > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

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Index of tables

  1. Corporate tax
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next Generation Partners
  5. Rising stars

Leading individuals: Hall of Fame

  1. 1

Next Generation Partners

  1. 1

Rising stars

  1. 1

Tax boutique Parisi Tax LLP covers the full spectrum of work in this field and is particularly well known for its on advise on the tax aspects of M&A transactions, enterprise investment schemes, property and restructuring. Leading the team is Lisa Stevenson , who primarily focuses on M&A, and Becky Rees, whose standout specialty is  enterprise investment schemes. Property tax specialist Jon Robinson and associate Jamie Chambers are also recommended.

Practice head(s):Lisa Stevenson; Becky Rees

Other key lawyers:Liz Morgan; Jon Robinson

Testimonials

'Technically excellent and responsive, so ideal for transactions which can move at a fast pace and at all hours of the day and night.'

'They are competent, responsive, friendly, commercial and affordable.'

'Becky Rees is sensible, commercial and able to explain tax issues clearly to clients.'

'Lisa Stevenson is very impressive. In addition to knowing her stuff, she is always responsive, friendly and commercial in her approach.'

'Jamie Chambers is a great young lawyer who delivers his advice in a straightforward and commercial way.'

Key Clients

Shareholders of Independent Transition Management Limited

Management team of Ticketer Limited Incopro Limited

Excel IT Services Limited

KPMG

C7 Health Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising management sellers and exiting sellers on the tax treatment of the sale of Independent Transition Management Limited to Inflexion.
  • Advising management sellers on the tax treatment of the sale of Ticketer Limited to private equity firm Tenzing and their reinvestment into the buyer vehicle.
  • Advising Incopro Limited on the tax treatment of secondary transfer by certain shareholders and investment.
  • Advising Excel IT Services Limited on the tax covenant and tax warranties on the acquisition of Commensus Limited and Communica Holdings Limited.

DLA Piper UK LLP's regional practice benefits from the firm's international connections, primarily focusing on the tax aspects of corporate transactions and restructurings. 'Outstanding technical expert' Mark Burgess leads the team and is notably skilled in real estate transactions and corporate reorganisations. Also recommended is senior associate Nick Hinton, who advises on the tax aspects of corporate transactions.

Practice head(s):Mark Burgess

Testimonials

'A combination of technical excellence, pragmatism and a genuine commercial approach.'

'Mark Burgess is an outstanding technical expert whose commercial approach can be game changing, particularly for complex transactions.'

'Mark Burgess is bright, efficient, pragmatic, conscientious and extremely knowledgeable. He provides timely, practical advice time and time again.'

Key Clients

Aviva

AXA

Blackstone Group

Oaktree Capital

RBS

MKS Instruments, Inc

St James's Place

Dignity plc

Unilever Pension Fund

Universities Superannuation Scheme

Work highlights

  • Acting for a KKR and Round Hill Capital joint venture on the acquisition, development and financing of a portfolio of student accommodation properties.
  • Advising on Zurich's acquisition of Oak Underwriting from fellow global insurer RSA Insurance.
  • Advising Starwood on its acquisition of a portfolio of seven Hilton hotels across the UK.
  • Advising on a complex disposal of the print media distribution arm of John Menzies plc to Endless.
  • Advising Boparan, the parent company of the 2 Sisters Food Group, on tax aspects of the sale of its red meat business to Irish-based meat producer Kepak Group.

Birmingham executive partner Jon Stevens is the key point of contact for DWF's regional tax practice, which operates in tandem with the firm's practitioners in its other key markets across Edinburgh, Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds. Stevens is highly experienced in tax matters pertaining to M&A and real estate transactions and also handles complex cross-border matters, and tax litigation.

Practice head(s):Jon Stevens

Key Clients

Whitbread Group PLC

Starboard Hotels Limited

Downing LLP

Maven Capital Partners UK LLP

Ares Management Limited

London Luton Hotel

BPRA Property Fund LLP

Keywords Studios plc

LXI REIT PLC

PepsiCo Inc

Kolbus GmBH

Work highlights

  • Represented Ares Management Limited in relation to its acquisition of a £140m property portfolio.
  • Provided tax advice to PepsiCo on its acquisition of Lancashire-based Pipers Crisps.
  • Represented Fairview Hotels in relation to the acquisition of hotel business and premises in Cardiff from Canada Life.
  • Advised Keywords Studios on tax aspects of its acquisitions of Cord Worldwide, Fire Without Smoke, Studio Gobo and Electric Square.
  • Advised LXI REIT in relation to complex tax structuring issues connected with setting up a new property authorised investment fund.

Gowling WLG's tax team offers the full gamut of tax services, and is particularly known for advising clients in the real estate sector. Lee Nuttall leads the tax team nationally and is highly experienced in matters covering VAT, corporate tax, stamp duty land taxes and capital allowances. Another notable name is director Chris Nyland, who has a strong record in property tax issues.

Practice head(s):Lee Nuttall

Other key lawyers:Chris Nyland

Key Clients

St Modwen

SEGRO

Hill & Smith Holdings plc

Empiric Student Properties REIT

Sanctuary Housing Association

Crown Estate Commissioners

LaSalle Investment Managers Legal & General

GCP Student Living REIT

Triple Point Social Housing REIT

Work highlights

  • Provided tax structuring advice relating to the dissolution of a joint venture between the Crown Estate Commissioners and a British Land-advised Hercules Unit Trust.
  • Provided capital allowances and payment structuring advice to international aerospace, defence and energy engineering group Meggitt on the acquisition and development of its proposed new supersite in the West Midlands.
  • Advised Oxbotica Limited on an appeal against a refusal by HMRC to issue SEIS compliance certificates.
  • Advising NFU Mutual on the launch of a new investment platform with Apache Capital and Harrison Real Estate Capital.

Mills & Reeve LLP 's team covers all of the main areas of corporate tax, handling a range of local, national and international work. Working at the helm are Kevin Lowe, who predominantly focuses tax aspects of M&A transactions, banking work and company reorganisations, and Neil Pearson, who has expertise in social finance, venture capital funding and employee incentives.

Practice head(s):Kevin Lowe; Neil Pearson

Other key lawyers:Robert Kent; Matthew Short

Key Clients

Livingbridge

Randall & Quilter

Indigo Telecom Group

Global Festivals

RPC Plc

Big Society Capital

Maven Capital Partners

ResonanceVetPartners

Bethnal Green Ventures

Work highlights

  • Drafted and negotiated two share purchase agreements and tax schedules for Randall & Quilter Investment Holdings Limited, with input from Bermudian, Canadian and US counsel.  
  • Acted for the shareholders (and option holders) of Validus-IVC Limited on its sale to US listed and S&P 500 purchaser Verisk, Inc.
  • Acted for the sellers of the Indigo Telecom group on a secondary buyout, and the management team on their reinvestment into the buyer, which was funded by Growth Capital Partners LLP.
  • Acted for Resonance, a leading social impact fund manager, in establishing its West Midlands social investment tax relief fund – the first fund of its kind to focus on investments into social enterprises in Central England.
  • Acted for RPC on the purchase of the entire issued share capital of Plasgran Limited, a specialist plastics recycling business and on the separate but related purchase of the freehold property from the sellers.

Browne Jacobson LLP's local tax offering is led by Andrew Noble, who is dual-qualified as a solicitor and chartered tax adviser. The team handles tax aspects of M&A and real estate transactions - including cross-border deals - for a range of private and public sector clients.

Practice head(s):1

Other key lawyers:2

Key Clients

Clydesdale Bank plc

Freshcut Foods Limited

Lloyds Development Capital

London Borough of Croydon

(Shareholders of) Manthorpe Building Products

Northedge Capital

Nottingham City Council

Shropshire Council

Staffline Recruitment Limited

(Shareholders of) The Fresh Olive Company

Work highlights

  • Acted for Shropshire Council on tax aspects of its acquisition of a retail shopping centre in the middle of Shrewsbury.
  • Acted for the selling shareholders on the disposal of Manthorpe Building Products Holdings Limited and its subsidiaries to Polypipe Limited, and related property transactions, advising on tax aspects of the sale and the legal documentation.
  • Acted for the sellers on the disposal of the Fresh Olive Company, which includes the olive oil and balsamic vinegar brand Belazu, with UK national distribution, sold in Waitrose and elsewhere.
  • Advised the London Borough of Croydon on tax aspects of its acquisition of the retail and leisure park at the Colonnades, Purley Way, Croydon.
  • Acted for Northedge Capital on tax aspects of its investment in the management buyout of facilities management company Orbis Protect.

Shoosmiths LLP's tax team, which was launched in 2014, offers corporate, real estate and employee incentives advice, and has a specialism in advising on enterprise investment scheme and venture capital trust-compliant investments. The team is led by Kate Featherstone, who has extensive experience of advising on the tax aspects of M&A, private equity deals and restructurings.

Practice head(s):Kate Featherstone

Key Clients

Octopus Investments

NVM Private Equity

Libryo Ltd

Calculus Capital

Beringea

McKay Securities Plc

Matillion Limited

Boots

Walmart

AfterPay Touch Group

Firesprite Limited

Work highlights

  • We were instructed by Playground Games Holdings Limited on amending and restructuring existing Enterprise Management Incentive  options, with input from HMRC, and designing and implementing a structure to split the legal and beneficial interest in the shares in order to make the stamp duty mechanics workable in the context of the wider transaction.
  • We acted for the shareholders of Tapdaq Limited in relation to its disposal to Tapjoy Inc. Our role involved structuring a cashless rollover, seeking HMRC clearance, considering the existing EMI scheme in the context of a cashless deal and ultimately surrendering the scheme in full in favour of a replacement restricted stock unit scheme in buyer securities.
  • We acted for minority shareholders of Amistha in relation to the North Edge backed MBO of Orbis Protect Limited (a subsidiary company of Amistha). A share capital reduction demerger was implemented so as to return proceeds to the minorities in a tax efficient manner, and we structured the reinvest into the buyer newco in a tax efficient manner comprising growth shares.
  • We acted for Dukes Schools Limited in relation to its acquisition of Knightsbridge School Limited. The traction was significantly complicated by ERS exposures: disqualified EMI schemes, historical transactions at undervalues, lack of section 431 elections – all of which created a significant PAYE and NIC exposure in target. We took the lead role in identifying, structuring and managing the outcomes, including liaising with HMRC. T

Susheel Gupta heads the team at Higgs & Sons, which focuses on tax planning advice and employee incentive schemes. He is particularly known for representing shareholders on the taxation elements of transactions.

Practice head(s):Susheel Gupta

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