Firm Profile > Macfarlanes LLP > London , London

Macfarlanes LLP
20 CURSITOR STREET
LONDON
EC4A 1LT
London

Contentious trusts and probate Tier 1

A considerable amount of work at Macfarlanes LLP runs into monetary values of hundreds of millions or billions. The firm works closely with its private client offering to provide contentious and non-contentious advice. It regularly deals with the largest trusts and estates that hold prominent businesses, other substantial property holdings and large cash and investment portfolios both nationally and internationally. The disputes it acts in not only affect adult individuals but also whole conglomerates and their employees and multiple generations of the same family. Charles Lloyd heads the team that acts for beneficiaries, spouses, trustees, financial institutions as well as entrepreneurs and those with hereditary wealth and their protectors. Jonathan Arr 'goes the extra mile' for clients, while Elizabeth Doherty was recently promoted to the partnership.

Personal tax, trusts and probate Tier 1

Macfarlanes LLP is skilled at advising international entrepreneurs, family offices and owner-managed businesses. It routinely advises clients who have no UK connections. Strenghts lie in advising on complex international asset structuring, family governance issues as well as tax planning advice. Piers Barclay heads the team and specialises in succession, tax and estate planning for individuals and their families as well as related advice to trustees and other private client service providers, such as family offices. The team is also skilled at structuring multi-jurisdictional estates by using trusts in civil law and Sharia law countries, and is also adept at advising non-UK trustees on tax and fiduciary matters. Mark Hunter and Richard Giangrande  were promoted to the partnership.

Private equity: transactions – mid-tier – up to £250m Tier 1

Macfarlanes LLP has a strong track record acting for management teams of target companies on high-value sales (some of which are worth billions), and also advises on a significant number of sponsor-side mandates. On the latter front, Alexander Green and Christopher Good advised Lexington Partners on its acquisition of interests in Photobox and Knight Square from Electra Private Equity. Meanwhile, in a £2bn transaction that spanned Brazil and Singapore, Ian Martin assisted the management team of Cognita Schools with the sale of Cognita Topco to Jacobs Holding AG. The company operates over 70 private schools, educating in excess of 40,000 children. Alex Edmondson is strongly recommended, as are joint heads of team Stephen Drewitt, Howard Corney and Luke Powell.

Retail funds Tier 1

Macfarlanes LLP's practice is led by Lora Froud, whose heavyweight reputation has seen the firm win a number of new clients recently, including Jupiter Asset Management and Carne Global Financial Services. In a notable mandate for the firm, Froud, senior solicitor Alexandra Cochrane and others have been acting for Quilter Investors on the high-profile separation of Old Mutual Global Investors from its parent Old Mutual Wealth. Elsewhere, the firm excels in advising private equity managers on accessing the retail market through open-ended funds.

Commercial property: corporate occupiers Tier 2

At Macfarlanes LLP, the ‘commercial property team provides an excellent level of service’. In the development and investment space it is engaged for joint ventures, real estate fund structuring and inward investment along with the full range of financing and construction matters. On the corporate occupier front, the group handles relocation programmes, premises management and acquisitions, construction and planning issues. The firm is also home to a hotels practice which advises on tax, financing, management and franchising affairs. Standout individuals include Ian Nisse, a specialist on the structuring and financing of real estate projects, and Nick Barnes, whose strengths include debt financing, commercial letting and joint ventures. Dan Marriott is another standout name and is active on the full array of commercial property affairs.

Commercial property: development Tier 2

At Macfarlanes LLP, the ‘commercial property team provides an excellent level of service’. In the development and investment space it is engaged for joint ventures, real estate fund structuring and inward investment along with the full range of financing and construction matters. On the corporate occupier front, the group handles relocation programmes, premises management and acquisitions, construction and planning issues. The firm is also home to a hotels practice which advises on tax, financing, management and franchising affairs. Standout individuals include Ian Nisse, a specialist on the structuring and financing of real estate projects, and Nick Barnes, whose strengths include debt financing, commercial letting and joint ventures. Dan Marriott is another standout name and is active on the full array of commercial property affairs.

Commercial property: hotels and leisure Tier 2

At Macfarlanes LLP, the ‘commercial property team provides an excellent level of service’. In the development and investment space it is engaged for joint ventures, real estate fund structuring and inward investment along with the full range of financing and construction matters. On the corporate occupier front, the group handles relocation programmes, premises management and acquisitions, construction and planning issues. The firm is also home to a hotels practice which advises on tax, financing, management and franchising affairs. Standout individuals include Ian Nisse, a specialist on the structuring and financing of real estate projects, and Nick Barnes, whose strengths include debt financing, commercial letting and joint ventures. Dan Marriott is another standout name and is active on the full array of commercial property affairs.

Commercial property: investment Tier 2

At Macfarlanes LLP, the ‘commercial property team provides an excellent level of service’. In the development and investment space it is engaged for joint ventures, real estate fund structuring and inward investment along with the full range of financing and construction matters. On the corporate occupier front, the group handles relocation programmes, premises management and acquisitions, construction and planning issues. The firm is also home to a hotels practice which advises on tax, financing, management and franchising affairs. Standout individuals include Ian Nisse, a specialist on the structuring and financing of real estate projects, and Nick Barnes, whose strengths include debt financing, commercial letting and joint ventures. Dan Marriott is another standout name and is active on the full array of commercial property affairs.

Commercial property: retail Tier 2

At Macfarlanes LLP, the ‘commercial property team provides an excellent level of service’. In the development and investment space it is engaged for joint ventures, real estate fund structuring and inward investment along with the full range of financing and construction matters. On the corporate occupier front, the group handles relocation programmes, premises management and acquisitions, construction and planning issues. The firm is also home to a hotels practice which advises on tax, financing, management and franchising affairs. Standout individuals include Ian Nisse, a specialist on the structuring and financing of real estate projects, and Nick Barnes, whose strengths include debt financing, commercial letting and joint ventures. Dan Marriott is another standout name and is active on the full array of commercial property affairs.

Corporate tax Tier 2

Macfarlanes LLP's tax department is divided into teams handling investment management, M&A, real estate, remuneration and group tax. Particular specialisms for the firm include VAT, employment and mobility taxes, tax policy, operational tax, transfer pricing and share valuation. The group has a niche in advisory work for listed companes and financial services groups, particularly in relation to cross-border matters. Department head Damien Crossley focuses on alternative investment fund taxation, Ashley Greenbank is experienced in the corporate tax aspects of UK and cross-border corporate finance and M&A transactions and group tax planning. Ceinwen Rees, who joined from Debevoise & Plimpton LLP in May 2018, is an expert in funds taxation.

Financial services: contentious Tier 2

Macfarlanes LLP advises a range of clients including investment banks, institutional asset managers and fund managers, as well as assisting on strategic regulatory work at senior management and board level. In addition to being appointed to the PRA / FCA panel of skilled persons, particular areas of specialism for the firm are its hedge fund and private equity regulatory advisory practices. Michelle Kirschner and Paul Ellison lead the non-contentious practice, and in a recent highlight, the former advised Salary Finance in relation to its joint venture with independent banking group CYBG . The contentious team is led by Dan Lavender, Matt McCahearty and Barry Donnelly. Their department acts on large, complex regulatory disputes, enforcement actions and investigations. The practice provides clients a full service, from letter of claim through to trial, with in-house advocacy led by Guy Morpuss QC. Also notable are senior counsel Aalia Datoo, who has experience in contentious matters for both international and domestic clients, with particular expertise in complex financial litigation and regulatory investigation matters for banks and financial institutions; and specialist in white collar defence and criminal investigations Neill Blundell, who joined in 2018 from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP.

Fraud: civil Tier 2

The team at Macfarlanes LLP, which was significantly strengthened in early 2018 by the hire of Neill Blundell from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP, advises on a wide range of civil fraud matters, with a particular focus on the private wealth, financial services, and commercial and corporate sectors. Areas of expertise include asset tracing and injunctions, dishonest or unlawful conduct of directors, and pursuit of claims on behalf of the administrators or liquidators of insolvent estates and custodians of funds. Team co-head James Popperwell focuses on cross-border litigation, asset tracing, bribery and corruption, while fellow co-head Iain Mackie specialises in corporate and financial services litigation.

Real estate funds Tier 2

Well regarded for a 'truly exceptional team culture' in the words of one client, Macfarlanes LLP's real estate equity team works on matters involving a range of different asset classes, including industrial, commercial and residential property. The practice is able to assist in the formation and management of a broad spectrum of funds which cover listed, unlisted, closed-ended, open-ended, onshore and offshore vehicles. Furthermore, the firm's tax department provides regular support and boasts recent experience in property income-focused structures. Practice head Alexander Amos specialises in real estate and credit funds while senior associate Harriet Miller is 'clearly experienced' in her field.

Regulatory investigations and corporate crime Tier 2

Macfarlanes LLP has made a significant push into corporate and white collar crime with the hire of Neill Blundell , who joined as a partner from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP and now heads the City firm's team. Blundell has a lot of experience acting for corporates on fraud and financial crime matters. The team, which is able to call upon lawyers in practices such as disputes, is able to advise on a host of matters from bribery, corruption and money laundering allegations, through to claims of insider dealing, market abuse, unexplained wealth orders and cartel offences. Clients include listed companies, private banks, hedge funds, private equity houses, global security and data protection companies, and industrial conglomerates. The firm also advises on investigations by overseas and domestic regulators.

Tax litigation and investigations Tier 2

Gideon Sanitt leads the tax disputes team at Macfarlanes LLP, which handles direct and indirect tax disputes for a range of corporates, as well as contentious trusts and private client tax matters and transfer pricing issues. The group also works closely with the financial regulatory team on tax administration matters, cross-border arbitrage trades and advises on the role of financial advisers in marketed tax arrangements. The group includes qualified mediator and tax tribunal judge Ashley Greenbank, VAT expert Chris Mortimer and, in February 2019 added James Drake-Linney from KPMG United Kingdom . Drake-Linney is a barrister who specialises in investigations and tax disputes with HMRC.

Banking litigation: investment and retail Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP's 'extremely capable team provides terrific levels of service, expertise and commercial judgement without the eye-watering fees of more recognised firms in this space'. The firm's banking litigation is handled by its financial services and markets dispute resolution group, which advises on disputes and investigations involving banking, finance, and financial services business, including financial crime. Barry Donnelly's financial litigation and arbitration practice encompasses a wide range of international disputes and investigations. Dan Lavender heads the financial services and markets dispute resolution group and is experienced in major multi-jurisdiction litigation, and Matt McCahearty regularly advises on international disputes, investigations, and enforcement matters, including LIBOR, FX and ISDAFIX. Aalia Datoo was promoted to senior counsel in 2019.

Commercial litigation Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP has 'very engaged and committed lawyers, who really get to grips with key issues'. The litigation practice is well known for high-value, high-stakes corporate and commercial disputes and investigations, particularly with a cross-border element.It frequently advises on  disputes  arising from corporate acquisitions, investments and re-organisations, joint ventures and shareholder arrangements. Iain Mackie is head of litigation and dispute resolution, and Lois Horne has particular experience in corporate and shareholder disputes, contract issues, banking litigation and financial crime. Other names to note are Matt McCahearty and Guy Morpuss QC, and senior solicitor Christopher Charlton. Corporate crime and investigations head Neill Blundell was recruited from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP, and Simon Day and Elizabeth Doherty were made partners.

Competition litigation Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP represents clients before multiple judicial and regulatory bodies in the UK and across the EU. The group handles standalone and follow-on damages actions for both claimants and defendants. While the growing team is very active across many industries, particular sectors of interest include financial services, pharmaceuticals, broadcasting, manufacturing, retail, and gambling. Of particular note in the pharmaceutical space, Cameron Firth successfully led a team on securing a victory for Flynn Pharma before the Competition Appeal Tribunal in a case relating to the CMA’s first unfair pricing decision.

Construction: contentious Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP's contentious construction team advises on matters for prestigious clients including governments, banks, housebuilders, developers and investors, and has recently seen a substantial increase in work on PFI disputes. The team, which includes five solicitor-advocates, is led by Douglas Wass, who advises a wide range of clients including contractors and employers on both domestic and international issues. Another significant name in the team is Andy Mather, who was lead partner for Aggregate Industries on its dispute with Amey in relation to the Sheffield Streets Ahead PFI project. Junior partner Mark Lawrence is also recommended.

Contruction: non-contentious Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP's non-contentious practice had a broad client base including owners, contractors, consultants and institutions. The team is headed up by the 'proactive' Angus Dawson and is known for its work in relation to office developments, mixed-use developments and hotels, resorts and leisure. Another key name within the team is the hugely experienced senior consultant Ann Minogue, who has been acting as lead adviser to Stanhope across its portfolio of development projects, including One Angel Court.

Derivatives (including commodities) Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP has 'a practice built to service the hedge fund and prime brokerage industry - they know all the market standards, all the innovation and have seen every negotiating position going'. The firm has one of the City's most prominent buy-side practices, due in part to the fact that most of its team has significant in-house experience. Practice head William Sykes advises investment and hedge funds, banks,and  high-net-worth clients on derivatives and structured products. He has experience in trading, custody, brokerage and clearing agreements for both derivative products and physical commodities and advises sell-side and buy-side clients across a range of asset classes. He leads a group of 'technical partners who are execution-focused'. One such partner is Christopher Acton, who is purely focused on the buy-side and acts for hedge funds, managed account platforms and proprietary trading houses, on prime brokerage, derivatives and regulatory matters in Europe.

Employee share schemes Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP advises on a range of employee share plans and incentive arrangements, providing expertise in related areas including employment, tax, trust law, corporate governance and remuneration regulation. The firm has experience in design, implementation, roll-out and operation, as well as increasingly acting on financial services remuneration. ‘Strong practice headRobert Collard specialises in employee share schemes and incentives and has ‘a deep knowledge of the law’. His team includes senior counsel Rasmus Berglund, who arrived from Linklaters LLP in 2018 and focuses on UK and international employee incentives and Senior Solicitor Saba Palizi, who arrived from Latham & Watkins in 2018 and specialises in employee benefits.

Employment: senior executives Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP has a particular focus on the financial services sector, advising financial institutions, private equity firms and hedge funds on discrimination issues, terminations, disputes, redundancies, restrictive covenants and team moves. Key partners are former practice head Sean Lavin - who 'is always calm in a crisis' - and current practice head Hayley Robinson, both of who advise on the full spectrum of employment partners for premium City clients. Robinson also has expertise in advising LLPs and other partnership structures on matters that affect them.

Equity capital markets – small-mid cap Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP acts for nominated advisers, listed funds, company issuers and investment managers in a wide range of equity transactions including placing work, private capital investments and corporate transactions with securities and shareholding components. Headed by Robert Boyle, the team's recent work has been fuelled in part by its visibility in the private equity space. In addition, the practice group has experience of equity deals involving tech companies, and has also seen activity from foreign issuers listing in the UK.

EU and competition Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP advises clients in sectors including financial services, pharmaceuticals, broadcasting, manufacturing, consumer goods, retail and gambling. It is also worth noting that the team has significant experience in advising on the intersection of intellectual property and competition law. Headed by Malcolm Walton, the department assists clients with issues such as multi-jurisdictional mergers, contentious work, sectoral enquires and investigations by UK, EU and global authorities. ‘Strategic thinker’ Cameron Firth is also highly recommended and is noted for his involvement in the CMA’s recent investigations into the pharmaceutical market.

Fraud: white-collar crime Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP has significantly strengthened its regulatory and white collar practice with the hire of Neill Blundell from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP  in 2018 to help set up its corporate crime and investigations team. The firm advises individuals who face international criminal investigations by multiple regulators, including the FCA, SFO and DOJ, and also deals with prosecutions and extradition proceedings. Areas of expertise include Fraud Act offences, bribery, corruption, money laundering, tax offences, insider dealing, market abuse, unexplained wealth orders and cartel offences. Clients include senior executives, members of family offices, entrepreneurs and ultra-high-net-worth individuals.

Hedge funds Tier 3

Sam Brooks is the lead partner on hedge funds matters at Macfarlanes LLP, which generates work from many of the largest European hedge fund managers and investors. Brooks' expertise includes structuring and terms, marketing regulations and documents, investor negotiations and service agreements. Complementing Brooks' core hedge funds expertise, the firm also fields experts in tax, regulation, finance, derivatives and trading.

M&A: upper mid-market and premium deals, £500m+ Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP predominantly handles UK M&A work for blue-chip domestic clients, using a comprehensive network of referral firms for cross-border matters. Though the firm has a strong private equity practice, the corporate team predominantly acts for listed companies on public M&A. The firm's broad sector focus is evidenced through the headline matters the corporate team has worked on, including representing Dana Incorporated on the planned acquisition of the driveline business of GKN. The retirement of highly rated Graham Gibb has been mitigated through the hire of Robert Ogilvy Watson from Ashurst, whose focus lies in public company work, and who has experience in multiple jurisdictions, including the US and Asia. In addition, the firm also hired special situations specialist Peter Baldwin from Ropes & Gray LLP. The team is co-headed by Howard Corney and Luke Powell, while outgoing senior partner Charles Martin is regularly involved in board-level issues for the firm's established clients. The 'exceptionally bright' Alex Edmondson is highly rated by clients for his logical approach, and has a particular focus on the technology sector, heading a cross-departmental group.

Partnership Tier 3

John Dodsworth chairs Macfarlanes LLP's cross-departmental professional practices and LLPs group, which excels in M&A and structuring work, as well as advising on employment, tax and regulatory issues that arise out of partnerships. On the contentious side, the group regularly handles partnership disputes, leveraging the firm's broader litigation capabilities. Jessica Adam is another key name; notably advising Slater and Gordon on the separation of its UK operations from its Australian-listed parent.

Private funds Tier 3

Stephen Robinson leads the investment funds team at Macfarlanes LLP, which dominates the mid-market private funds space. The group works very closely with the firm's expert tax offering, and is most often instructed by fund managers seeking to implement pan-European strategies. The firm advises both LPs and GPs, ensuring it is able to provide well-balanced advice. It covers a range of mandates, with fund instructions spanning the private equity, credit, infrastructure and venture capital asset classes. Alexander Amos and Christopher Good are both highly recommended; Amos is the name to note for alternative fundraisings while Good focuses on private equity and venture capital.

Property finance Tier 3

Macfarlanes LLP is recognised for its strength on both the lender and borrower sides, advising a diverse range of developers, investors, funds and alternative lenders. The team has particular expertise in development finance, especially involving operating assets, such as in the BTR, student accommodation and hotel sectors, and also advises on investment finance and real estate portfolio transactions. Colin Morgan counts both UK and overseas lenders, borrowers and developers among his clients; Clare Breeze has a particular focus on joint ventures and investment and development finance; and Jat Bains specialises in debt finance transactions.

Acquisition finance Tier 4

Benefiting from an 'excellent understanding of the latest developments in the sector', Macfarlanes LLP provides a 'commercially-minded service' to the firm's impressive roster of mid-market focused private equity sponsors. On the lender side, although it is less active for core commercial and investment banks than many in the ranking, it has been very successful in securing significant market share for many of the leading credit funds, including Hayfin and Ares Capital. Kirstie Hutchinson 'is able to harness the latest market developments to get the best outcome for a client' and is highly conversant with unitranche, super-senior, subordinated, high yield and bridge financing techniques.

Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans Tier 4

Allied to Macfarlanes LLP's premier mid-market leveraged finance offering for private equity sponsors, the firm also regularly handles the ongoing financing requirements of numerous listed companies. The 'superbKirstie Hutchinson has a strong reputation among some major investment grade corporates, including JD Wetherspoon plc, which she recently advised on a revolving credit facility arranged by a syndicate of banks. The firm's deep relationships with credit funds not only generates work in relation to their direct lending mandates, but also in terms of work for them as borrowers in securing bank-lent facilities to leverage the funds themselves.

Charities and not-for-profit Tier 4

The team at Macfarlanes LLP is led by Jonathan Conder and Nicholas Harries who are both partners in the private client team. They have significant experience of advising philanthropic individuals, families and institutional clients, as well as high-profile operational charities, and are active in many charitable sectors from education and healthcare through to sustainable development. The group is well-equipped to handle complex transactional work that requires both charity law advice and expertise in other areas such as commercial, real estate or structuring advice about how to structure the trading and development activities of the charity.

Commercial contracts Tier 4

The broad range of experience at Macfarlanes LLP covers the technology, life sciences, pharmaceuticals and hotels sectors, with particular expertise in outsourcing and complex transactional arrangements. The firm also acts for entrepreneurs and high-net-worth individuals. Malcolm Walton leads the practice and advises on complex carve-out and separation matters, and transitional arrangements, as well as on commercial arrangements relating to IP exploitation and EU laws on free movement and competition. The team's technology offering was strengthened by the 2018 arrival of Mike Rebeiro from Norton Rose Fulbright. In 2018 Rupert Casey left for Keystone Law and Jeremy Courtenay Stamp retired from the firm.

Debt capital markets Tier 4

Macfarlanes LLP has a small dedicated debt capital markets practice; it focuses on complex transactions for financial institutions, corporates, investors and other market participants. In 2018, the firm advised on high-profile matters including issuances by Venn Partners LLP, which was appointed by the Secretary of State for the Department for Communities and Local Government to operate the £3.5bn Private Rented Sector Housing Guarantee Scheme bond programme. The firm is 'very experienced in the debt fund market' and practice head Richard Fletcher is 'a very capable lawyer, who is very responsive and good to work with'. He frequently advises financial institutions, corporates, fund managers, investors, servicers and trustees on a broad range of financing matters, primarily focusing on debt capital markets, as well as structured finance, securitisation and speciality finance.

Employment: employers Tier 4

Macfarlanes LLP has a particular focus on the financial services sector, advising financial institutions, private equity firms and hedge funds on discrimination issues, terminations, disputes, redundancies, restrictive covenants and team moves. Key partners are former practice head Sean Lavin - who 'is always calm in a crisis' - and current practice head Hayley Robinson, both of who advise on the full spectrum of employment partners for premium City clients. Robinson also has expertise in advising LLPs and other partnership structures on matters that affect them.

Environment Tier 4

Macfarlanes LLP advises clients from the corporate, real estate, infrastructure and financial services sectors, as well as high-net-worth individuals, on environment-related transactions, regulatory issues and disputes. This involves advice on environmental sustainability, energy auditing compliance and regulatory permitting negotiations relating to industry operations. Practice head Nigel Price also assists with the environmental aspects of transactions in the waste management sector, which involves the assessment of regulatory risks arising from the specific type of industrial site operations.

Financial services: non-contentious/regulatory Tier 4

Macfarlanes LLP advises a range of clients including investment banks, institutional asset managers and fund managers, as well as assisting on strategic regulatory work at senior management and board level. In addition to being appointed to the PRA / FCA panel of skilled persons, particular areas of specialism for the firm are its hedge fund and private equity regulatory advisory practices. Michelle Kirschner and Paul Ellison lead the non-contentious practice, and in a recent highlight, the former advised Salary Finance in relation to its joint venture with independent banking group CYBG . The contentious team is led by Dan LavenderMatt McCahearty and Barry Donnelly. Their department acts on large, complex regulatory disputes, enforcement actions and investigations. The practice provides clients a full service, from letter of claim through to trial, with in-house advocacy led by Guy Morpuss QC. Also notable are senior counsel Aalia Datoo, who has experience in contentious matters for both international and domestic clients, with particular expertise in complex financial litigation and regulatory investigation matters for banks and financial institutions; and specialist in white collar defence and criminal investigations Neill Blundell, who joined in 2018 from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP.

Pensions (non-contentious) Tier 4

The Macfarlanes LLP pensions team has recently enjoyed a regular flow of de-risking mandates from scheme sponsors including bulk annuity transfers, buy-ins, buy-outs and longevity swap arrangements. Further regular mandates include providing advice to trustees and sponsors on GMP equalisation, establishing defined contribution master trusts, scheme streamlining and harmonization arrangements, Pensions Regulator interventions and funding negotiations. Practice head Camilla Barry also assists the wider firm's top-tier corporate department on the pensions aspects of M&A deals, while Andrew Barton heads the pensions de-risking practice.

Private equity: transactions – high-value deals (£250m+) Tier 4

Macfarlanes LLP has a strong track record acting for management teams of target companies on high-value sales (some of which are worth billions), and  also advises on a significant number of sponsor-side mandates. On the latter front, Alexander Green and Christopher Good advised Lexington Partners on its acquisition of interests in Photobox and Knight Square from Electra Private Equity. Meanwhile, in a £2bn transaction that spanned Brazil and Singapore, Ian Martin assisted the management team of Cognita Schools with the sale of Cognita Topco to Jacobs Holding AG. The company operates over 70 private schools, educating in excess of 40,000 children. Alex Edmondson is strongly recommended, as are joint heads of team Stephen Drewitt  , Howard Corney and Luke Powell.

Property litigation Tier 4

Rated for its 'good commercial advice', Macfarlanes LLP receives a steady flow of instructions from public companies, institutional and retail investors, developers and private individuals; frequently, these mandates pertain to disputes arising from development agreements, landlord and tenant insolvencies and overage provisions as well as from general landlord and tenant relationships and those between neighbours. The 'reassuring and analytical' Doug Wass heads the practice, which includes the 'highly capable' Mark Lawrence; the latter 'gives clear and concise advice' on all aspects of contentious real estate, specialising in high-value claims, and made partner in May 2019.

Structured products and securitisation Tier 4

Macfarlanes LLP focuses on innovative and highly complex transactions, frequently involving fund-based structures, as the structured finance team has significant expertise in fund formation. Its work includes covered bonds, CLOs, receivables financings, fund structures and alternative lending platforms, portfolio transactions and liability management, restructurings, synthetic securitisation and other structured products. The 'user-friendly, sensible and responsiveRichard Fletcher leads the practice, which acts for financial institutions, corporates, servicers, fund managers, investors, trustees and other market participants. He handles a variety of ABS transactions, frequently involving investment funds and consumer finance-focused businesses. Goldman Sachs and NatWest Markets are among his key clients.

Corporate restructuring & insolvency Tier 6

Led on the insolvency front by the 'technically very strong' head of insolvency, Simon Beale, and for restructuring mandates by the 'very smart' head of the wider restructuring and insolvency group Jat BainsMacfarlanes LLP provides 'highly commercial advice' to insolvency practitioners, funds, lenders, and corporates. In the asset management space, as well as picking up debtor mandates for distressed portfolio companies of private equity sponsor clients of the firm, the team is also active in distressed M&A for turnaround funds and hedge funds. Bains has niche expertise in relation to professional services insolvencies, and continues to represent Slater and Gordon in ongoing matters related to its restructuring by way of a debt for equity swap. The team was also strengthened on the special situations and distressed M&A front by the arrival in June 2019 of Peter Baldwin from Ropes & Gray LLP.

International arbitration Tier 7

Macfarlanes LLP 'combines strategic know-how with the zeal, diligence and determination needed to manage and present a factually and legally complicated case'. The arbitration practice encompasses several areas, including banking, investment, energy, aviation, transport, construction, engineering and advertising. Iain Mackie heads the litigation and dispute resolution group, which also includes Lois HorneJames Popperwell and Guy Morpuss QCGeoff Steward left for Stobbs IP.

Immigration

Macfarlanes LLP has a 'brilliant' business immigration offering, which is instructed by start-ups, SMEs, international corporations and higher education institutions on a range of UK immigration issues. The firm's work includes advising companies, senior executives and their families on inbound and outbound immigration matters, sponsor licence issues and nationality applications. The team has recently assisted a number of companies on issues arising from non-compliance with Tier 2 of the PBS. It is also able to advise on immigration matters relating to corporate transactions and works closely with the firm's employment team to advise on employee-related issues.

THE FIRM We are a distinctive London-based law firm, focused on our clients and on delivering excellence in the international legal market. We are known for the quality of our work; not just in dealing with the full range of corporate and commercial matters, but in advising clients on their private affairs as well.

We advise on our clients’ most complex matters, whilst at the same time remaining smaller than our competitors. This fosters a cohesive environment of collective experience and close-knit teams and helps to maintain the exceptionally high levels of service and partner involvement that our clients expect.

 INTERNATIONAL Most of our clients have an international presence and the majority of the work we do has an international dimension.

Rather than having multiple overseas offices, we believe our clients are best served by us working with the top independent law firms around the world. We work with the firms and lawyers that are right for the job at hand.

We invest significant time and resource into building and maintaining our relationships with these firms to ensure that the highest quality advice is given consistently and in a fully integrated way, regardless of the jurisdiction.

RECRUITMENT We understand the importance of a stimulating and inclusive workplace and offer multiple pathways to rewarding careers. We are committed to developing and investing in our people and welcome applications from people of all backgrounds, bringing different perspectives and experiences, making Macfarlanes an exciting place to work. The firm recruits around 30 graduates each year with the expectation that they will stay after training. Many of them do, creating a stable partnership of extraordinary quality.

For more information about career opportunities please visit our website.

Department Name Email Telephone
Senior partner Charles Martin
Managing partner Julian Howard
Commercial, brands and IP Malcolm Walton
Competition Malcolm Walton
Construction & engineering Angus Dawson
Corporate and M&A Luke Powell
Corporate and M&A Howard Corney
Derivatives & trading Will Sykes
Employment Seán Lavin
Employment Hayley Robinson
Finance Christopher Lawrence
Financial services regulation Paul Ellison
Insurance Andrew Barton
Investment management Stephen Robinson
Litigation and dispute resolution Iain Mackie
Pensions Camilla Barry
Private client Piers Barclay
Private equity Stephen Drewitt
Real estate Anthony Burnett-Scott
Restructuring and insolvency Jat Bains
Tax and reward Damien Crossley
Photo Name Position Profile
 Christopher Acton  photo Christopher Acton
 Jessica Adam  photo Jessica Adam
 Alexander Amos  photo Alexander Amos
 Jonathan Arr  photo Jonathan Arr
 Jatinder Bains  photo Jatinder Bains
 Mark Baldwin  photo Mark Baldwin
 Piers Barclay  photo Piers Barclay
 Camilla Barry  photo Camilla Barry
 Simon Beale  photo Simon Beale
 Neill Blundell  photo Neill Blundell
 Robert Boyle  photo Robert Boyle
 Clare Breeze  photo Clare Breeze
 Anthony Burnett-Scott  photo Anthony Burnett-Scott
 Harry Coghill  photo Harry Coghill
 Robert Collard  photo Robert Collard
 Jonathan Conder  photo Jonathan Conder
 Howard Corney  photo Howard Corney
 Oliver Court  photo Oliver Court
 Damien Crossley  photo Damien Crossley
 Dominic Cunliffe  photo Dominic Cunliffe
 Angus Dawson  photo Angus Dawson
 Simon Day  photo Simon Day
 John Dodsworth  photo John Dodsworth
 Barry Donnelly  photo Barry Donnelly
 Stephen Drewitt  photo Stephen Drewitt
 Alexander Edmondson  photo Alexander Edmondson
 Paul Ellison  photo Paul Ellison
 Richard Fletcher  photo Richard Fletcher
 Lora Froud  photo Lora Froud
 Christopher Good  photo Christopher Good
 Charles Gothard  photo Charles Gothard
 Ashley Greenbank  photo Ashley Greenbank
 Nicholas Harries  photo Nicholas Harries
 Lois Horne  photo Lois Horne
 Julian Howard  photo Julian Howard
 Kirstie Hutchinson  photo Kirstie Hutchinson
 Gerald Kelly  photo Gerald Kelly
 Michelle Kirschner  photo Michelle Kirschner
 Dan Lavender  photo Dan Lavender
 Seán Lavin  photo Seán Lavin
 Christopher Lawrence  photo Christopher Lawrence
 Charles Lloyd  photo Charles Lloyd
 Iain Mackie  photo Iain Mackie
 Charles Martin  photo Charles Martin
 Ian Martin  photo Ian Martin
 Andy Mather  photo Andy Mather
 Matt McCahearty  photo Matt McCahearty
 James McCredie  photo James McCredie
 Colin Morgan  photo Colin Morgan
 Guy Morpuss QC photo Guy Morpuss QC
 Ian Nisse  photo Ian Nisse
 Simon Nurney  photo Simon Nurney
 Tom Pedder  photo Tom Pedder
 Andrew Perkins  photo Andrew Perkins
 Simon Perry  photo Simon Perry
 Steven Pitchford  photo Steven Pitchford
 James Popperwell  photo James Popperwell
 Luke Powell  photo Luke Powell
 Sebastian Prichard Jones  photo Sebastian Prichard Jones
 Edward Reed  photo Edward Reed
 Hayley Robinson  photo Hayley Robinson
 Stephen Robinson  photo Stephen Robinson
 Mark Slade  photo Mark Slade
 Jennifer Smithson  photo Jennifer Smithson
 William Sykes  photo William Sykes
 Malcolm Walton  photo Malcolm Walton
 Douglas Wass  photo Douglas Wass
Number of UK partners : 90
Number of other UK fee-earners : 360

We are committed to creating an inclusive workplace based on a culture of openness and mutual respect. Our focus is on gender, ethnicity, LGBT+, social mobility, neurodiversity and wellbeing. An inclusive, forward-thinking culture also enables us to provide innovative solutions to our clients.

During 2018 we ran a firm wide programme on fostering an inclusive culture. The aim was to raise awareness and increase the dialogue around this. We then consulted extensively through staff groups and took feedback from other channels. This culminated in the launch of 25 People Commitments aligning to three main strands:

· Balance: Helping staff to juggle work, family and personal commitments.

· Clarity: Ensuring transparency, clarity and fairness.

· Development: Supporting staff through the various stages of their careers.

The firm is actively implementing these Commitments, which underpin our ongoing initiatives in support of diversity and inclusion.

We have four staff networks which provide opportunities for peer support, networking and personal development: Balance (for gender and family support), LGBT & friends, BME & friends and EnABLE (for disability, neurodiversity and mental health).

Macfarlanes is a founder member of the new Reignite Academy, a collaborative, legal sector initiative which provides opportunities for experienced lawyers to return to the profession after a career break. In 2019 we ran a bespoke Female Lawyers Forum which provides regular opportunities for practical and constructive discussion and networking for all our female lawyers.

The firm has also introduced a back-up care service with My Family Care which is offered cost free to all staff to enable them to book up to six emergency care sessions per year for children or for other people for whom they care, such as aging parents. In 2019 Macfarlanes took part in the My Family Care Parental Leave Policy & Reward Benchmark. Over 250 companies provided details of their current policies and benefits for maternity, adoption, paternity and shared parental leave. Macfarlanes was ranked first for the legal sector.

We work with a number of organisations to attract more diverse talent at graduate level, including Rare Recruitment, Aspiring Solicitors, Bright Network and PRIME. When we recruit graduates, we run CV blind interviews and use contextual recruitment which enables us to understand the context of a candidate’s experiences and qualifications. This ensures that we recruit the best candidates regardless of their background. We have been using these processes for six years and our recruitment of graduates from ethnically diverse backgrounds has increased by 144%.

The firm has an annual voluntary mentoring scheme. In addition, all four year PQE female solicitors are also able to participate as mentees in the 30% Club cross company mentoring scheme and some of our senior partners and heads of business services participate as mentors.

Our wellbeing programme offers physical and mental health support. Resilience training was delivered to the whole firm in 2018. Trainees and junior solicitors are offered additional workshops each year and we are looking into a bespoke programme for senior solicitors. In 2019 we launched the Guardians – a group of volunteer staff including partners who are trained to listen and act as a confidential support for colleagues who have something they want to share, but are unsure about the best way to do so.