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London: Corporate and commercial

M&A: smaller deals, up to £50m
M&A: smaller deals, up to £50m - ranked: tier 2

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP is best known for providing advice to clients on strategic transactions in the technology, retail, leisure and entertainment sectors. The majority of instructions come from entrepreneurs and owner-managed businesses, in addition to larger corporates in the firm's core TME sector. An increasing proportion of matters carry cross-border elements, with the firm acting for clients with international interests. The team is co-led by Colin Howes and Tim Parker, both of whom have handled multiple transactions across the firm's core sectors.

Practice head(s):Colin Howes; Tim Parker

Other key lawyers:Mark Phillips

Key Clients

DMC Business Machines Limited

No1 Lounges

The Gallagher Partnership

Royal Opera House

InSkin Media

Panoply Holdings PLC

Work highlights

  • Advised No1 Lounges on its conditional acquisition of six airport lounge businesses across four jurisdictions from Eithad Airways.
  • Acted for The Gallagher Partnership on its acquisition by Haines Watts Chartered Accountants.
  • Acted for the Royal Opera House on the sale of the Opus Arte part of the business - a multi-platform arts production and distribution company - to Naxos Rights (Europe) Limited, for £2.7m.
  • Advised The Panoply Holdings on its £30m acquisition of four technology-related consultancy businesses, its admission to AIM and subsequent fundraising.
  • Advised shareholders of the DMC Canotec Group, a European print and document management firm, on its sale of a majority stake to UK private equity firm Lyceum Capital.

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Venture capital
Venture capital - ranked: tier 3

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Led by the 'solutions-oriented' Tony Littner, Harbottle & Lewis LLP's 'cohesive and collaborative' three-partner team is particularly well versed at handling mandates for entrepreneurs within the technology and media space, where it is able to provide a 'comprehensive service' by virtue of its interdisciplinary approach which often draws in experts from the IP and broader tech teams. Although the team is traditionally better known for its company-side work, it is increasingly active for investors, which include traditional venture capital funds, as well as corporate venturers, including GMG Ventures.

Practice head(s):Tony Littner

Other key lawyers:Tom Macleod


'Lawyers within the team work exceptionally well together.'

'Tony Littner has fantastic skills and is always thinking ahead when offering a solution.'

Key Clients


Think Jam


GMG Ventures



Inskin Media

Smart Pensions

Work highlights

  • Advised Futrli, a fast-growing cloud-based business decision-making platform, on its £4m Series A funding raise from leading venture capital companies, Notion Capital and firstminute Capital to fuel aggressive growth and innovation.
  • Advised entertainment marketing agency Think Jam on a multimillion-pound strategic partnership with Dorfman Media Holdings.
  • Advised Earlybird on its lead investment in Lexoo, the legal tech start-up helping companies rapidly identify and obtain cost-effective and transparent legal services.
  • Advised GMG Ventures on its lead investment in Signal Media, the artificial intelligence-powered decision-support platform, which was part of a $16m Series B round.
  • Advised Hopster, the preschool learning and entertainment app, on its new growth capital round led by existing strategic equity investor Sony Pictures Television Networks.
Leading individuals

Tony Littner - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

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London: Dispute resolution

Commercial litigation
Commercial litigation - ranked: tier 6

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP's 'commercial litigation group is excellent; it is also innovative and dependable'. The team acts for the firm’s established core media, technology and entertainment client base, as well as the retail and financial sectors and high-net-worth clients. Andy Millmore  heads the dispute resolution team and Sandi Simons is commercial litigation head. Louis Castellani is also highly regarded, Matthew Leverton was made partner, and Georgina Long promoted to senior associate; former senior associate Melanie Hart is now at Ince.

Practice head(s):Sandi Simons

Other key lawyers:Andy Millmore; Louis Castellani; Matthew Leverton; Georgina Long


'Unparalleled media experience, but the firm also has an unusual level of general commercial and legal understanding'.

'Sandi Simons gets involved in the detailed thinking and is very creative in seeing possible problems before they happen'.

'Matthew Leverton is always available; he is also a very clear thinker, gives balanced advice, and is highly intelligent and articulate'.

'Georgina Long is excellent - she has a cool head and gets the job done no matter what is thrown at her'.

Key Clients

Virgin Atlantic Airways

Concert Promoters Association


Royal National Theatre

LW Theatres Group

Hat Trick Productions

Work highlights

  • Acted for a film financing company in a Commercial Court claim, which was brought by a lender for repayment of a film production-related loan.

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London: Human resources

Employment: employers
Employment: employers - ranked: tier 6

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP supports employers on all aspects of employment law, including routine HR advice, TUPE and business immigration. Typical instructions also encompass providing advice on team moves as well as handling internal grievance, disciplinary procedures and investigations. Under the joint leadership of Howard Hymanson and Yvonne Gallagher, the practice group has a strong track record in sector-related litigation, regularly acting for employers in discrimination and bullying claims before employment tribunals. Senior executives, especially from the creative and entertainment industries,  seek the team's advice on appointments, exit strategies and restrictive covenants. The department further holds expertise in pursuing high value psychiatric illness claims in the High Court.

Practice head(s):Howard Hymanson; Yvonne Gallagher

Other key lawyers:Marian Derham


'Yvonne Gallagher and her team truly feel different to other firms. Their technical experience is a given but it is the emotional intelligence, pragmatism and actual advice (as against laying out the legal facts and then putting all the responsibility on the client) that sets them apart.'

'Yvonne Gallagher is commercial, technically brilliant and has the magic ingredient of high EQ.'

Key Clients

Encyclopaedia Britannica


Taj International Hotels

International Car Wash Group

Harrods Limited

Nimax Theatres

Regents Park Open Air Theatre

GP & J Baker

ISAM Funds (UK) Limited

The Big Issue

Work highlights

  • Instructed by new client Harrods Limited to defend three different Employment Tribunal claims, which include allegations of race and disability discrimination and unfair dismissals.
  • Assisted Northbank Talent Management Limited in enforcing restrictive covenants against one of its employees joining a rival literary agent.

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Employment: senior executives
Employment: senior executives - ranked: tier 2

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP supports employers on all aspects of employment law, including routine HR advice, TUPE and business immigration. Typical instructions also encompass providing advice on team moves as well as handling internal grievance, disciplinary procedures and investigations. Under the joint leadership of Howard Hymanson and Yvonne Gallagher, the practice group has a strong track record in sector-related litigation, regularly acting for employers in discrimination and bullying claims before employment tribunals. Senior executives, especially from the creative and entertainment industries,  seek the team's advice on appointments, exit strategies and restrictive covenants. The department further holds expertise in pursuing high value psychiatric illness claims in the High Court.

Practice head(s):Howard Hymanson; Yvonne Gallagher

Other key lawyers:Marian Derham


'Yvonne Gallagher and her team truly feel different to other firms. Their technical experience is a given but it is the emotional intelligence, pragmatism and actual advice (as against laying out the legal facts and then putting all the responsibility on the client) that sets them apart.'

'Yvonne Gallagher is commercial, technically brilliant and has the magic ingredient of high EQ.'

Work highlights

  • Representing an international foreign correspondent in relation to her £10m claim against CNN for race and disability disability discrimination.
  • Acted for a senior executive on his appointment as CEO of a large shipping group.

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London: Private client

Charities and not-for-profit
Charities and not-for-profit - ranked: tier 3

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP is best known for its work on advising corporate foundations, media-related fundraising charities as well as subsidised arts organisations. It also continues to advise a number of new charities on a diverse range of matters with David Scott and Colin Howes at the helm. Scott’s practice spans from advising well-known charities to advising high-net-worth individuals on their personal philanthropy. Howes provides advice in relation to various charities’ ongoing governance and compliance as well broader legal issues.

Practice head(s):David Scott; Colin Howes

Work highlights

  • Advised its client in respect of the winding up of a high profile charity.
  • Advised its client in relation to the constitution of the charity and recommended suggested actions for the trustees to consider.
  • Advised its client in relation to queries from the trustees of a high profile charity.
  • Advised its client in relation to  data protection practices and its  policies in relation to GDPR.
  • Represented its client in registering a charity, requiring a close review of legislation and regular correspondence with the Charity Commission.

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Family - ranked: tier 3

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP represents high-net-worth clients primarily with public profiles to protect on the full spectrum of family law matters. Areas of expertise include advising on child abduction, advising same-sex couples in relation to children and financial issues as well as on alternative family cases such as artificial insemination and surrogacy cases. The practice is also experienced at advising on financial claims for non-married couples. Head of team Catherine Bedford is skilled at advising on cases involving relocations as well as Schedule 1 financial provision claims.

Practice head(s):Catherine Bedford

Other key lawyers:Tom Farley-Hills; Mark Irving


'Any family team needs first of all a real leader at the top. This team has it in Catherine Bedford, who has a genuinely exceptional ability to attract and retain really high quality clients'.

'Catherine Bedford never stops thinking about how to improve a case, and will look again and again for a new angle. As a result she has the confidence of her clients, from industrialists to celebrities, and everyone in between'.

'The service offered by this firm is 5 star and the client care cannot be faulted. Catherine Bedford specialises in the divorces of the rich and famous. She gives 110% to each client and works extremely hard. She has excellent judgement and is a great strategist'.

'Catherine Bedford's client winning skills are such that she could "win a new client in solitary confinement"'.

'Tom Farley Hills' judgement is impeccable. He grasps the issues in a case from the off and never loses sight of what is important to get the correct answer for his client'.

'All the team is first-class but Mark Irving is particularly worthy of praise. He is extremely intelligent and masters all the details of his cases. He never misses a point and always makes the right decisions'.

'Mark Irving was a great listener and was excellent at reflecting and then providing the most appropriate solution'.

'It has a high-end practice with a dusting of celebrity clients. The team has a high profile in this field, and is regarded as efficient and tough'.  

'Available 24/7. Willing to go the extra distance'.

'Catherine Bedford stands out because she is young to be operating at the level at which she works. She inspires great trust in clients because she is always available to them, she listens to their problems without judgement'.

Work highlights

  • Represented the main charity in the long-running, highly acrimonious and widely publicised proceedings known as the “Chinese Tigers Case”.
  • Acted for the billionaire husband in a fiercely contested jurisdiction fight in High Court divorce proceedings where concurrent Monaco divorce proceedings were ongoing.
  • Acted for the mother in highly contested Schedule 1 proceedings and concurrent internal relocation proceedings against the billionaire father.
  • Acting for the wife/mother in financial and Children Act proceedings. The husband/father is the founder chairman of one of the UK’s largest, most successful, privately-owned businesses.
  • Representing the wife in her high-profile divorce from a well-known television personality.
Leading individuals

Catherine Bedford - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Tom Farley-Hills - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

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Personal tax, trusts and probate
Personal tax, trusts and probate - ranked: tier 3

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Glen Atchison heads the team at Harbottle & Lewis LLP that acts for a significant number of entrepreneurs in new (often tech) disrupter industries. Other clients stem from the creative industries and include high-profile celebrities. Atchison’s primary focus is advising UK resident and non-resident ultra-high-net-worth individuals on multifarious issues ranging from tax-efficient international succession planning and structuring through to the use of trusts or other bespoke arrangements to either trace or protect assets. Jonathan Burt is recommended for his work on cross-border succession planning in particular.

Practice head(s):Glen Atchison

Other key lawyers:Jonathan Burt; David Scott; Caroline Rao; Siena Gold


'Jonathan Burt and Siena Gold both have considerable experience in dealing with HNW and UHNW individuals. They have huge experience in cross-border matters and with international individuals.'

'It has a very modern approach which fits extremely well with the relatively young media and technology clients which it has. Glen Atchison: excellent commercial approach.'

'It has a very close team that works well together and is driven but balanced.'

'The team has excellent commercial acumen. Jonathan Burt - highly experienced and knowledgeable. Siena Gold - extremely good technically, mature, excellent judgement and delightful with clients.'

'Glen Atchison is a really commercial person - very solid on technical things and David Scott - a delight to work with and very competent.'

'Jonathan Burt: lightning-fast intellect. Siena Gold: incredibly thorough, bright and diligent.'

'Jonathan Burt has a very strong practice and unique cross-border abilities: a leader in the private client field.'

'Jonathan Burt has an exceptional knowledge of the industry and extremely good working relationship with clients.'

'Jonathan Burt and Siena Gold are intellectually excellent, have tremendous experience and great judgement.'

'David Scott is immensely calm, understated and reliable. Glen Atchison is deceptively clever and has a great commercial nose. Caroline Rao - we are particularly impressed with her attention to detail and grasp of the complex issues.'

Work highlights

  • Advising two ultra-high-net-worth individuals, who made hundreds of millions of pounds through selling a disrupter tech-based company, on their wealth holding structures.
  • Advised on the incorporation of a Cayman Islands PTC (by a Cayman Islands STAR trust), administered by Cayman Islands professional fiduciaries, to act as the trustee of a number of redomiciled family trusts.
  • Advising client on the variation of a trust application to the Bermuda court, and on the qualification for business property relief for group of companies valued at £700m.
Leading individuals

Jonathan Burt - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

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London: Real estate

Commercial property: corporate occupiers
Commercial property: corporate occupiers - ranked: tier 4

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

The team at Harbottle & Lewis LLP was recently bolstered by the promotions of Melanie Benson to head of department and Lee Greaves to partner. Sector specialisms include retail and technology, with a number of luxury brands, fashion retailers and video game corporations forming the client base. In the leisure space, the practice provides counsel to film, theatre, arts organisations and charities on a broad range of commercial property issues. The group is particularly adept on corporate occupier work and recently handled several new head office leases for an array of high-profile companies. Development and investment matters also form the caseload.

Practice head(s):Melanie Benson

Other key lawyers:Robert Reilly; Leo Marino


'Harbottle & Lewis continue to offer swift and concise advise'.

'Partner Melanie Benson is always available or having the resources in place to respond to our often urgent requests.'

'Their advice is always correct. They do not over-charge. They virtually give the impression that one is their only client and that the file is always on their desk.'


Key Clients

Really Useful Group Limited

Wolford SA

Cross Stone Group

Ingenious Media Limited

IMO Car Wash Limited

Theatre of Comedy Limited

Raft Furniture Limited

Tower Research Capital Europe Limited

Kobalt Music Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advising a syndicate of investors on the numerous pre-lets at Castle View Shopping Centre in Caerphilly.
  • Advised on the £13.8m disposal of an office building in central London.

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London: Risk advisory

Data protection, privacy and cybersecurity
Data protection, privacy and cybersecurity - ranked: tier 3

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP has notable expertise in the technology, media and entertainment sectors acting for a client roster, which includes The Pokémon Company International, Comic Relief, the Harry Potter Theatrical Production and Virgin. The team handles contentious and non-contentious mandates and takes a cross-departmental approach utilising the commercial, employment and litigation teams. Sacha Wilson also enhances the firm’s strength in the data privacy aspects of marketing, adtech and digital media. Daniel Tozer leads the technology and data practice and focuses on commercial data protection. Senior partner Gerrard Tyrrell leads the group’s contentious work and John Kelly regularly acts for private individuals.

Practice head(s):Daniel Tozer

Other key lawyers:Sacha Wilson; Gerrard Tyrrell; John Kelly


'The excellent team provides superb legal support and impresses with its professionalism, technical knowledge and can-do attitude, and works seamlessly with the in-house team. It does an exemplary job both strategically and in the depths of the detail.'

'Daniel Tozer provides targeted and robust advice on the risks, practical implications and possible solutions.'

'Alex Hardy is technically and tactically great, and handles negotiations in a skillful and targeted manner.'

Key Clients

Virgin (Virgin Atlantic Airways and Virgin Holidays)

The Pokémon Company International

Diageo Plc

Comic Relief

O’Reilly Media

The Publisher’s Association

Hunter Boots


Flatshare Limited t/a

Harry Potter Theatrical Production


Seeburger UK

Orient Capital

Work highlights

  • Advising Virgin Atlantic Airways and Virgin Holidays on a full GDPR readiness project.
  • Assisting Roots Corporation with its GDPR compliance programme including amending its privacy notice and advising on international personal data transfer methods.
  • Advising Comic Relief on the documentation used for filming a portfolio of appeal films for projects funded by the charity including the data protection aspects of filming crowds.
  • Advising O'Reilly Media on its GDPR implementation project.
  • Assisting Aviva with the digital marketing and adtech aspects of its GDPR compliance programme.

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Reputation management
Reputation management - ranked: tier 1

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP's media and information group is headed by 'grandee of the industry' Gerrard Tyrrell , and is best known for its representation of all senior members of the Royal Family including HM The Queen. The firm lays its focus on claimant work and advises a spectacular client list on preventing publication of private information such as allegations concerning family life, medical history and business interests. On top of that, the 'proactive and innovative' team acts for high-profile business individuals in relation to the processing and publication of inaccurate personal data in relation to a number of prominent risk databases. The 'very quick' John Kelly is an expert in working with FTSE 100 companies, investment funds and charities. The team is also praised for its 'exceptional' associates: 'Strategic' associate Natasha Hibbert is building her practice in information and reputation protection; another name to note is senior associate Louise Prince, who advises corporate clients as well as a large number of phone hacking victims. Jo Sanders  left the team to become the UK head of reputation management at Withers LLP.

Practice head(s):Gerrard Tyrrell

Other key lawyers:John Kelly; Louise Prince; Natasha Hibbert


'The combination of John Kelly and Gerrard Tyrrell is exceptional - in intellectual reach, sophistication of view, wisdom and experience.'

'Harbottle have a fantastic reputation across the private client world due to the in-house talent and experience the firm possesses - making them a market leader in London and a subject matter expert globally.'

'With a proactive and innovative approach to the most complex problems, Harbottle is able to quickly identify effective short term solutions whilst keeping an awareness of the bigger picture.'

'The team under Gerrard Tyrrell has such a depth of experience dealing with high profile and sensitive matters. They are equipped with all the legal know-how and tools that can be deployed in a specialist area of the law which is constantly changing.'

' Gerrard Tyrell is the best lawyer in the UK in private client and privacy areas.'

'John Kelly is one of the leading UK lawyers in the area of reputation management. He is a very hands on adviser, who has an excellent reputation due to his ability to very quickly identify key issues in complex cases.'

'Unlike many lawyers who give advice in their own bubble, John and Gerrard individually and in combination are formidable, quick-witted, well informed and work in complete harmony with other outside advisers.'

'The best associates I've encountered in this space in any firm in Natasha Hibbert and Louise Prince.'

'Natasha Hibbert is wise beyond her years, with a maturity that allows her to manage very high powered and difficult clients. She is strategic, and one to watch for the future. I predict she will be a top tier reputation management lawyer within the next decade.'

Key Clients

All of the most senior members of the Royal Family, including HM The Queen; TRH The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall; TRH The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge; TRH The Duke and Duchess of Sussex and HRH The Duke of York

Melania Trump

Sir Richard Branson

David and Victoria Beckham

Kate Moss

Sir Alex Ferguson


David Ross

Colin and Livia Firth

Sir Bradley Wiggins

Anne Hathaway

Pets at Home Limited

Russell Brand

Sacha Baron Cohen

Lisa McPartlin

Work highlights

  • Advises HRH The Duchess of Sussex in relation to reputational issues such as harassment arising from media interest in her private relationships.
  • Advised TRH The Duke and Duchess of Sussex and HRH Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank on both Royal Weddings of 2018 including protection of information, broadcast and reputational issues.
  • Successful complaint to The Daily Telegraph over false claims about Melania Trump's past.
  • Successful complaint to the Sun on Sunday over an article published in breach of Kate Moss’ privacy.
  • Successful complaints to Independent Press Standards Organisation over inaccurate and misleading articles about the reasons why Sally Osman (Director of Royal Communications) and Steve Kingstone (HM The Queen's Media Secretary) were leaving their respective roles.
Leading individuals

Gerrard Tyrrell - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

John Kelly - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Rising stars

Louise Prince - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

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London: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

Brand management
Brand management - ranked: tier 2

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP combines trade mark and soft IP expertise with big-ticket advertising and sponsorship work, as well as advising on the regulatory aspects of marketing and promotions, adtech and contentious proceedings before the UK and EU Intellectual Property Offices (IPO). As head of the advertising group, Michael Lister primarily advises on the commercialisation of IP rights, sponsorship and collaborative arrangements, as well as regulatory issues. Andy Millmore is also a name to note for work in the digital media space. On the IP side, Shireen Peermohamed advises on trade mark registration, portfolio management and prosecution, while Sacha Wilson has 'excellent, in-depth knowledge of the advertising and media buying sector'. Senior associate Kostyantyn Lobov is likewise recommended for trade mark enforcement actions and media regulatory work. Jeremy Morton departed to Temple Bright LLP.

Practice head(s):Andy Millmore; Michael Lister

Other key lawyers:Michael Lister; Shireen Peermohamed; Kostyantyn Lobov


'The team at Harbottle & Lewis have specialist knowledge and practical experience of the transactions, participants and the technologies that underpin the media and advertising industry. They understand and speak the language of the internal clients and counter-parties.'

'Excellent team with exceptionally good knowledge and experience of this sector; a top value-for-money team'

'Harbottle & Lewis are impressive due to the specialisms they have brought in - from talent litigation to trademark creativity.'

'Sacha Wilson has an extensive knowledge of the sector and the participants in it. He has an excellent team of associates. Transactions happen quickly and efficiently.'

'Michael Lister is a great lawyer - very humble in his approach to clients but exceptionally assertive when facing adversaries in a calm, collected manner.

'The efficiency and tone of the associates we have dealt with shows they are very capable, and much more experienced than at other firms.'

Key Clients

Havas Group




The Pokémon Company International

Work highlights

  • Advising Vita Coco in relation to various brand ambassador agreements, influencer arrangements and its strategic partnerships.
  • Advising Soul Machines, an innovative artificial intelligence technology company, on a series of commercial brand tie-ups, sponsorship arrangements, promotional activities and data issues, including partnerships and brand collaborations with RBS.
  • Advised David Beckham on the negotiation of his agreement with new digital sports content platform OTRO.
  • Continuing to manage the intellectual property portfolio of Sir Terry Pratchett’s estate.
Next Generation Partners

Michael Lister - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Rising stars

Kostyantyn Lobov - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

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IT and telecoms
IT and telecoms - ranked: tier 4

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Recognised for its representation of rights holders in the media, sports and entertainments sectors, Harbottle & Lewis LLP's technology team assists with a range of commercial and venture capital transactions. Practice head Daniel Tozer regularly advises established technology companies and start-ups on the development and commercialisation of new technologies. Michael Lister focuses on the use of cutting edge technology in sport and other forms of entertainment, while Tony Littner leads the firm's start-up and venture capital group. The practice also benefits from the addition of the 'very practical, solution-driven' and 'extremely user-friendly' Sacha Wilson, who joined from Bristows LLP and is 'extremely experienced in media and advertising'.

Practice head(s):Daniel Tozer

Other key lawyers:Michael Lister; Tony Littner; Sacha Wilson


'There are very few firms that truly understand online advertising, but in Sacha Wilson, Harbottle & Lewis has a real expert in the field.'

Key Clients


Route Research


Havas Media


Research Exchange






Virgin Management/Virgin Red

Bounce Leisure

Glassworks UK



Work highlights

  • Instructed by Expedia on a wide range of commercial and technology matters, most notably the implementation of Expedia’s strategic alliance with Thomas Cook.
  • Advised the Oil and Gas Authority on the first UK Oil and Gas National Data Repository.
  • Advised Kingston Technology on various commercial and technology agreements relating to its Hyper X brand of headsets, solid-state drives, keyboards, mousepads and other gaming peripherals.
  • Assisted technology innovator and UK workplace pensions provider, Smart Pension, with a strategic investment from  JP Morgan.
  • Advising Soul Machines on a variety of matters relating to the licensing and exploitation of its technology.

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Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 4

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP 'has an excellent understanding of the media industry and the client's commercial needs'. The group handles a range of contentious matters including brand protection and copyright enforcement work, as well as non-contentious issues relating to corporate transactions, licensing and other agreements. The team is jointly led by the 'simply brilliant' Shireen Peermohamed, who handles a range of brand management matters; and Andy Millmore who focuses on disputes. Senior associate and litigator Kostyantyn Lobov, who counts technology and entertainment among his sector specialisms, is also a name to note.

Practice head(s):Shireen Peermohamed; Andy Millmore

Other key lawyers:Kostyantyn Lobov


'The firm takes the trouble to understand the client's business objectives and provides very good advice.'

'The work is overseen by partners with excellent knowledge in intellectual property and media law.'

'The group works to co-ordinate and manage multi-jurisdictional input on matters of international relevance.'

'Andy Millmore and Kostyantyn Lobov are both extremely knowledgable in their field.'

'Shireen Peermohammed's knowledge and experience are second to none and her client care is also exemplary.'

'Sharon Daboul is extremely responsive, diligent and pro-active as well as having an excellent knowledge of trade mark law.'

Key Clients

Glasswall (IP) Limited

Dunmanifestin Limited

Virgin Holidays Limited, Virgin Enterprises Limited

Universal Pictures

Warner/Chappell Music

Phil McIntyre Entertainment Limited (and others)

Work highlights

  • Acting for Glasswall in an opposition to a patent invalidity action relating to antivirus software brought by a competitor.
  • Acting for Virgin Holidays and Virgin Enterprises as two of 162 defendants in a large-scale copyright infringement claim relating to the use of photographs.
  • Advised Universal Pictures on the negotiation of rights for the production of the feature film Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again.
  • Defending Phil McIntyre Entertainment in a passing off, economic tort and defamation claim.
  • Acting for Chappell Music in a termination of licence claim, and a claim relating to British reversionary rights.

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Media and entertainment (including media finance)
Media and entertainment (including media finance) - ranked: tier 1

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP is noted for its 'breadth of expertise' across theatre, interactive entertainment, media finance, music, film, television and publishing work. The theatre team, which is led by Neil Adleman, regularly acts for producers, theatre owners, subsidised companies and individual writers and directors; it advised on all aspects of the UK and Republic of Ireland tour of the West End production of Motown. The video games group, which is led by Mark Phillips and Alan Moss, is instructed by leading console platforms and publishers, and is regularly engaged on video game financing deals. It is also noted for its e-sports expertise. Abigail Payne heads the media finance team which is experienced across debt, equity and tax-related financings for the film, TV, games, music, publishing and theatre sectors. Elsewhere, the music team is instructed by record labels, publishers, artists, producers, managers and digital music platforms. The film and TV group, where Sarah Lazarides is a pivotal figure, regularly acts as production counsel for major Hollywood productions shooting in the UK and Europe, acts for UK independent film producers and is also instructed by major SVOD platforms. Alex Hardy leads the publishing group, which acts for a number of high-profile publishing houses, authors, publishing sector start-ups and literary agents.

Practice head(s):Neil Adleman; Mark Phillips; Alan Moss; Abigail Payne; Jonathan Berger; Alex Hardy

Other key lawyers:Sarah Lazarides; Peter Armstrong; Kostyantyn Lobov; Ben McMeechan; Charles Leveque; Katrien Roos; George Babbington; Raffaella De Santis; Will Priestley; Harriet Stone; Clare Zucker; Shireen Peermohamed


Jonathan Berger is excellent at analysing a problem and getting things done.

Alan Moss, Sarah Lazarides and Clare Zucker are all great lawyers; very approachable and very knowledgeable in their respective fields.

The team is really friendly and is keen to help its clients in any way it can.

Alan Moss is a really dedicated, hardworking and friendly lawyer who goes out of his way to help clients.

The firm has a great relaxed style, which is backed up by tremendous breadth and depth of knowledge about film, TV and the creative sector.

The firm's excellent partners are supported by knowledgeable and smart associates.

Jonathan Berger is a thoughtful, determined and excellent lawyer who gets things done.

Key Clients

National Theatre

Sonia Friedman Productions

Gold Circle Entertainment

Elliott Harper Productions

Donmar Warehouse

Playful Productions

Fiery Angel

The Old Vic

Neal Street Productions


Take-Two Interactive/Rockstar Games

Square Enix

Cloud Imperium Games

The Pokémon Company International


Axis Animation

Blazing Griffin

Stainless Games

Sketchbook Games

Acamar Films

LA Media Fund

Locksmith Animation

Altara Games

Quickfire Films

Lorton Finance

Marv Studios

Finstock Capital

Universal Music Group

Conor Maynard

Paul White

Emoticast t/a TuneMoji


Joanne Shaw Taylor

Jean Philippe Rio-Py

James Ford

Ren Harvieu

Idol Tutor t/a Now Play It


Universal Pictures

Film London

Cinestaan International

Nira Park and Edgar Wright

Axis Studios


Marv Films

Magic Light Pictures

The band “Queen”

Working Title Films

The Royal Household

Hachette UK



The Publishers Association

DC Thomson & Co

The Estate of Sir Terry Pratchett

Bibliotech Education


Dazed Group

Northbank Talent Management

Work highlights

  • Advised The Royal National Theatre on the West End transfers of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time, Home, I’m Darling, The Lehman Trilogy, Consent and Nine Night.
  • Acted for Quickfire Films on the financing of two upcoming theatrical feature films, entitled Summerland and Never Grow Old.
  • Advised TC Film on the financing of its feature film The Courier, starring Gary Oldman and Jeffrey Dean Morgan.
  • Represented music messaging platform and social network, TuneMoji, on its multi-territorial licensing deals with major and independent record labels and publishers.
  • Acted as production counsel on Amazon Studios’ first feature film being shot in the UK, The Aeronauts, starring Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones.
Leading individuals

Abigail Payne (Media Finance) - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Mark Phillips (Computer games) - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Neil Adleman (Theatre) - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Shireen Peermohamed (Publishing) - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Next Generation Partners

Alex Hardy (Publishing) - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Sarah Lazarides (Film and TV) - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

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Sport - ranked: tier 3

Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Harbottle & Lewis LLP's 'very practical team' is particularly strong on sponsorship and commercial agreements, an area in which the team acts for corporations, individuals and governing bodies, and boasts further expertise managing regulatory issues for clients. The 'excellent' Michael Lister, who primarily handles sports marketing and rights exploitation mandates, recently advised Nissan on its acquisition of the e-dams Formula E team and the subsequent sponsorship, supply and driver agreements for Nissan Formula E. Bob Mitchell, whose expertise spans commercial and regulatory sports law, recently worked with associate Sam Purkiss on a review of the EFL's five-year broadcasting deal with Sky UK. Consultant Dalton Odendaal also serves as the general counsel at the Invictus Games Foundation.

Practice head(s):Bob Mitchell

Other key lawyers:Michael Lister; Dalton Odendaal; Bob Mitchell; Sam Purkiss


"The Harbottle & Lewis team have a in-depth knowledge of their specialist area and are able to provide practical and pragmatic commercial legal advice."

"Harbottle & Lewis' sports group have experience of sports rights contracts, from small to multi-million."

"The practice have an understanding of rights holders and brands which enables them to provide clients with win win solutions."

"Bob Mitchell is an outstanding partner; he knows our business well, recognises what is critical to us and what can be traded in negotiation, and is able to listen to concerns and respond accordingly."

"Associate Sam Purkiss was very helpful in our recent transaction and offered great value advice." 

Key Clients

Alex Hales

English Football League

David Beckham

The England Cricket Men’s and Women’s Teams


Nissan Formula E

Watford Football Club

British Gymnastics


Invictus Games Foundation


Work highlights

  • Advised England cricketer Alex Hales in relation to the England and Wales Cricket Board’s disciplinary proceedings brought through the Cricket Disciplinary Committee.
  • Conducted an independent review and prepared a written report into the communication and decision-making processes relating to the EFL’s new broadcast deal with Sky and the historical and current composition of the EFL’s Commercial Committee.
  • Advised David Beckham on the negotiation of his agreement with the new digital sports content platform OTRO.
  • Advised on and negotiated both a Title Sponsorship Agreement and Beer Partnership Agreement in relation to Diageo’s Guinness-branded sponsorship of rugby union’s Six Nations Championship.
  • Advised the Invictus Games Foundation on its arrangements with the organisers of the Invictus games Sydney 2018 including the broadcast, sponsorship and various media licensing arrangements. Also advising IGF on its Host License Agreement with the next organiser of the Invictus Games, The Hague 2020.
Leading individuals

Michael Lister - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

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Legal Developments by:
Harbottle & Lewis LLP

  • Account of profits v damages: when and why does it matter?

    Since 2007, Experience Hendrix LLC(Hendrix) and Times Newspapers Ltd (Times) have been litigating over the intellectual property rights (IPR) in a recording of a Jimi Hendrix concert that took place at the Royal Albert Hall in February 1969. In September 2006 Times distributed a free CD, or covermount, with each edition of The Sunday Times . A claim was issued against Times in March 2007 for infringement of copyright and performers’ rights under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. In March 2008 the High Court held that Times had infringed the IPR in the recording and Hendrix elected to have an inquiry as to damages in respect of that infringement. The case has given rise to some complex issues as to the basis for the quantification of damages, and the inquiry is due to be heard next year, but the case is also a reminder of more general considerations in relation to remedies in IPR cases, and why the basis for quantification of those remedies can have far reaching consequences for a successful claimant.

    - Harbottle & Lewis LLP

Legal Developments in the UK

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