The Legal 500

Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

CLARENDON HOUSE, CLARENDON ROAD, CAMBRIDGE, CB2 8FH, ENGLAND
Tel:
Work 01223 465465
Fax:
Fax 01223 465400
DX:
131971 CAMBRIDGE 6
Email:
Web:
www.penningtonslaw.com

East Anglia: Corporate and commercial

Corporate and commercial: Cambridge
Corporate and commercial: Cambridge - ranked: tier 2

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

'They have simply done it before many times and have the expertise', says a client of the corporate and commercial practice at Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP. The practice is led from London, Oxford and Guildford, but key partner Helen Drayton in Cambridge plays a pivotal role in some of the firm's largest transactions. The practice acts for technology, biotech and pharmaceutical clients, as well as academic institutions and non-profit research organisations. Associate Katharine Robinson is a rising star in technology, real estate, food and agriculture M&A deals. Ross McNaughton is predominantly based in San Francisco, but still leads deals through the Cambridge office.

Other key lawyers:Helen Drayton; Katharine Robinson; Ross McNaughton

Testimonials

"Helen Drayton was very experienced and sensible. She has excellent communication skills and gets her points across clearly and succinctly."

"Helen Drayton's advice is well thought through and coherent. She gave us good steers and sound advice."

"They don't work 9-5 Mon-Fri. They respond to emails and queries very rapidly. Also, you get the feeling that they fight for your benefits in negotiation and bring the pitfalls to your attention in clear English."

"They gave us a keenly priced acquisition service with good clear advice and can bring in key skills for certain aspects when needed."

Key Clients

GRC International Group Plc

Vindis Group Limited

Oppilan Pharma Limited

Ellgia Recycling Limited

Iliffe Media Limited/

Yattendon Group Plc

Erwin Technologies UK Limited

Cambridge Commodities Limited

BidX1 Limited

Derris LLC

Friar’s Pride Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised GRC on its initial public offering (IPO) and admission to trading on the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) of the London Stock Exchange.

  • Advised existing client, Iliffe Media (which publishes the award-winning Cambridge Independent) on its strategic acquisition of the Newark Advertiser and its associated website and publications, including the Newark Trader, based in Newark, Nottinghamshire.
  • Advised data governance software maker Erwin Technologies UK Limited on its strategic acquisition of an Italian information communication technology company, A&P Consulting.

  • Advised Ireland’s ground-breaking online auction house, BidX1, on its acquisition of leading UK property auctioneers Andrews & Robertson to create a powerful new omni-channel property auction house.
  • Assisting Oppilan Pharma Limited with its on-going fundraising and general corporate assistance.
Leading individuals

Helen Drayton - Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Rising stars

Katharine Robinson - Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

[back to top]

East Anglia: Finance

Banking and finance
Banking and finance - ranked: tier 2

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

The Cambridge office of Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP acts for both lenders and borrowers in key sectors including real estate, travel, leisure, education, technology and private wealth. In 2018, the firm was appointed to the HSBC banking and finance panel, and continued to receive instructions from long-term clients Link Asset Services and AIB. Practice head Helen Drayton is a recognised expert in acquisition finance, MBOs, bilateral lending and development finance. Real estate finance specialist Sarah Coates is also recommended.

Practice head(s):Helen Drayton

Other key lawyers:Sarah Coates

Testimonials

"A regional Firm with many areas of expertise across the sectors and geography served. It has a technology specialism with the Golden Triangle, including overseas support and representation."

"Helen Drayton is visible and proactive and is an excellent communicator through a deal or transaction. There are never any surprises when it comes to fees and she is always constructive with any suggestions, feedback or challenge."

Key Clients

HSBC Bank (UK) Plc

AIB Group (UK) Plc

Svenska Handelsbanken AB

Lors Homes Limited

Santander UK Plc

LTC Holdings Plc

Work highlights

  • Finance provided by HSBC by way of a £15m revolving credit facility with a £10m accordion.
  • Finance of £7m provided by AIB Group (UK) plc to facilitate the acquisition of a group of companies by a private equity backed MBO.
  • Finance of £3m provided by AIB Group (UK) plc to facilitate the acquisition of a company by a private equity backed MBO.
  • Penningtons Manches acted for HSBC Bank Plc in the financing on the management buyout of Cambridge executive search and recruitment business, Bailey Fisher.
  • Penningtons Manches acted for HSBC in the restructuring of a multi-let commercial property.
Leading individuals

Helen Drayton - Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

[back to top]

Insolvency and corporate recovery
Insolvency and corporate recovery - ranked: tier 3

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP joins the ranking this year, as the Cambridge office handles insolvency work through respected corporate finance partner Helen Drayton. The firm has a large restructuring and insolvency practice across its UK office network, on which Drayton can draw to advise clients, many of which are in the technology and life sciences sectors. The firm hired experienced real estate litigator Andrea Nicholls from Greene & Greene, who has particular expertise in property-related insolvency disputes.

Other key lawyers:Helen Drayton; Andrea Nicholls

Key Clients

Photonic Science and Engineering Limited

Free Breeze Energy Limited

Former Director (Canadian Resident) and Free Breeze Energy Limited (Canada)

Work highlights

  • Acting for Photonic Science and Engineering Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Scintacor Limited, on the acquisition of assets of Photonic Science Limited from the company in liquidation.
  • Acting for the joint administrations of iOra Software Limited, Simon Bonney and Andrew Andronikou of Quantuma, on the pre-pack sale of business and assets to a US-based buyer, as well as advising the administrators on a number of areas of concern in the administrator including the validity of the security taken by a related entity.
  • Acted for the former director of the UK subsidiary and Canadian Green Energy company, in defending a claim brought by the Liquidator for a payment to account for the value of a wind turbine said to be an asset of the UK subsidiary.
Rising stars

Andrea Nicholls - Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

[back to top]

East Anglia: Human resources

Employment
Employment - ranked: tier 2

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

The Cambridge office of Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP plays a vital role in the firms wider national employment practice and clients remark that 'the legal advice is sophisticated and spot-on'. Hilary Aldred, who frequently advises clients in the education sector, and senior associate Sophie Whitbread are the key contacts. Outside of education, their practices focus on life sciences, technology and charity sector clients, as well as high-net-worth individuals and entrepreneurs. The firm is sought-after for boardroom disputes and the management of multinational reorganisations and redundancy programmes.

Practice head(s):Hilary Aldred

Other key lawyers:Sophie Whitbread

Testimonials

"The Employment team at the Cambridge office has an excellent knowledge of the higher education sector, and particularly Cambridge/Oxford University and collegiate systems, which is invaluable."

"I work with Sophie Whitbread and Hilary Aldred. Both are extremely responsive and deliver an unrivalled level of customer service."

"Sophie Whitbread stands out for her customer focus and completely pragmatic advice. She has an excellent insight into how the organisation works. She understands the issues immediately and has a unique way of working in partnership with us to own and deal with the issues to the most effective and timely resolution. Her written advice notes are always really clear and invaluable."

"Hilary Aldred stands out for her unrivalled knowledge of academic employment issues and her willingness to challenge long-held views in this area. She is able to help on the most technical of employment issues within this complex arena."

"Sophie Whitbread is excellent."

Key Clients

Ocado Retail Ltd

Abcam Plc

Oxford Hydrotechnics Limited

Florida State University

UCL Business Plc

Fitzwilliam College

BIDX1

University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate

Work highlights

  • Providing employment advice to Abcam Plc to support its in-house legal team and on the non-contentious side, this includes dealing with day-to-day HR matters, such as the apprenticeship levy, and implication of Brexit with a EU heavy workforce.
  • Providing ongoing employment advice to Florida State University, including in respect of their policies and procedures which need adapting from the policies adopted in the US.
  • We advised a university in respect of their interaction with the UCU on a pay dispute.
  • We have  advised a property company on the TUPE implications of an outsourcing arrangement countrywide, and on the claim for failure to provide employee liability information against the transferee.
  • We advised this client on the closure of one of its offices and the redeployment of its staff.
Leading individuals

Hilary Aldred - Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Rising stars

Sophie Whitbread - Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

[back to top]

East Anglia: Public sector

Education
Education - ranked: tier 2

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP is best known for its work on employment and governance matters in the higher education sector, and it is on the panel of the London Universities Purchasing Consortium. Hilary Aldred is co-head of the firm-wide education practice and an employment specialist. She has specialised in both contentious and non-contentious employment work for more than 20 years and is recognised for her expertise on a wide range of education issues, acting both for and against institutions. Sarah Coates advises education clients on property matters.

Practice head(s):Hilary Aldred

Other key lawyers:Sarah Coates; Sophie Whitbread

Testimonials

"The team has very strong expertise in both education and employment law, which makes them ideally placed to assist on crossover topics."

"Hilary Aldred and Sophie Whitbread really go the extra mile for clients."

Key Clients

Florida State University

UCL Business Plc

Fitzwilliam College

University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate

Navitas/SAE

ICMP Management Limited

Farriers Registration Council

King’s College London

Work highlights

  • Ongoing employment advice to Florida State University, including in respect of their policies and procedures which need adapting from the policies adopted in the US.
  • Advising a university client on a pay dispute.
  • Provided a university client’s legal team with HR and employment advice on numerous issues especially in respect of worker status.
  • Reviewing the terms and conditions for a local private school in respect of the recruitment of the new principal, as well as on the question of service occupancies for some key staff.
  • Advised a group of higher education institutions on a claim being brought against all of them based on the same facts.
Leading individuals

Hilary Aldred - Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

[back to top]

East Anglia: Real estate

Commercial property: Cambridge
Commercial property: Cambridge - ranked: tier 3

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

The 'proactive, thorough and diligent' Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP's real estate team in Cambridge acts for a range of clients across many sectors including global banks, developers, housing associations, science parks, colleges and high-net-worth families. The lawyers are 'extremely thorough and professional in everything they do', and one client remarks that lead partner Sarah Coates is 'highly accessible and knowledgeable; she has a great eye for detail and is excellent in her appraisal of risks'. Coates has particular expertise in the acquisition and set-up of residential development sites, development finance secured lending and refinance work, and landlord and tenant matters.

Practice head(s):Sarah Coates

Other key lawyers:Helen Drayton; Giorgia Clements; Becky Lund

Testimonials

"The team has good in-depth knowledge within its field and and is always positive and easy to deal with. We find that they are always on hand to assist with any questions we may have and we happily recommend our clients to them."

"Sarah Coates in particular has a good in-depth understanding of the property industry, site set up and legal issues."

"Becky Lund is also becoming a key part of the Penningtons team and her knowledge continues to grow with the support of Sarah Coates."

"I have complete faith in Sarah Coates. She totally understands any concerns and will address them. She seems to have excellent knowledge in the field and definitely fights our corner."

"The support team are also very thorough and always helpful."

Key Clients

This Land Limited

Murfet Group

Vindis Group

Friar’s Pride Limited

James Dolan Limited

Cytocell Limited

HSBC Bank UK PLC

Max Barney Estate

Blues Property Limited

Cambridge Commodities Limited

Work highlights

  • Penningtons Manches acted on behalf of This Land Limited on the acquisition of a portfolio of Cambridgeshire-based development sites with a total purchase price of circa £17m.
  • Penningtons Manches acted for Cambridge Commodities Limited in connection with the £10m sale and leaseback of its main operational site in Ely to London Metric PLC.
  • Penningtons Manches acted for the borrower in a substantial refinancing of a mixed-use development in Newmarket.
  • Penningtons Manches acted for HSBC Bank PLC on the restructuring of a multi-let commercial property.
Leading individuals

Sarah Coates - Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

[back to top]

Property litigation
Property litigation - ranked: tier 2

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP joins the ranking having recruited the 'really experienced and very good' Andrea Nicholls from Greene & Greene. Nicholls' main focus is real estate litigation and she works closely with commercial property partner Sarah Coates to advise on agricultural and rural property disputes, including both tenancy disputes and cases concerning the property held by a farming partnership as a partnership asset; freehold property disputes; rights of way; restrictive covenants; overage agreements and disputes regarding options; commercial leasehold disputes; forfeiture; rent arrears recovery; lease renewal proceedings; and break notices.

Other key lawyers:Andrea Nicholls

Work highlights

  • Obtaining an interim injunction to prevent the diversion of a private right of way to a residential property by the neighbouring quarry.

  • Opposed a lease renewal under s25 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 on grounds of development based solely upon a feasibility plan.
  • Negotiating the purchase of shares from a family member to allow the farming company to continue to farm.

[back to top]

East Anglia: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

Biotechnology
Biotechnology - ranked: tier 2

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Biotechnology is a key industry sector across the national network of offices of Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP and the key lawyers in Cambridge advise start-ups and established life sciences companies on corporate, IP, IT, property and finance matters. Among its clients are numerous biotechnology, medical device, diagnostics and pharmaceutical companies, as well as research institutes. The firm, which climbs the ranking this year, has a dedicated IP, IT and commercial lawyer in senior associate Rachel Bradley and an experienced employment partner in Hilary Aldred.

Practice head(s):Rachel Bradley

Other key lawyers:Hilary Aldred; Sarah Coates

Key Clients

Wren Therapeutics

Cytocell

Atopix Therapeutics

King’s Commercialisation Institute

Astex Therapeutics

Orca Pharmaceuticals

Abcam

Oppilan

Metrion

King’s Commercialisation Institute

Certis

Work highlights

  • We advised this client on an amendment to a clinical research agreement with a UK academic institution.
  • Acting for US-based Oppilan, a San Diego based drug discovery company on their various funding rounds and other UK corporate matters.
  • Acting for Wren on all of its UK legal advice, including commercial/IP matters, HR and employee options.
  • Negotiating a new lease for premises of Granta Park.
  • Represented a client in its Research and Option agreement with a large global pharmaceutical company.
Rising stars

Rachel Bradley - Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

[back to top]

Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 2

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP joins the ranking thanks to the growing workload of senior associate Rachel Bradley in the IP, IT and commercial practice. She has more than 13 years' experience in the publishing and life sciences sectors, and handles a range of non-contentious IP matters including trade mark, patent, know-how and copyright licences for the publishing industry, as well as software licences. Her clients range from small biotech and technology companies to large pharmaceutical companies, NHS Trusts, charities and academic institutions.

Practice head(s):Rachel Bradley

Testimonials

"The team at Penningtons Manches has lawyers who have worked in-house which means they have a great understanding our commercial concerns."

"They are able to respond to our queries efficiently and highlight any commercial and legal concerns appropriately."

"Rachel Bradley and the team have great understanding of our sector and the issues that we as an organisation face. With their experience in the sector and detailed knowledge of our business needs, the team are able to provide us with a tailored service for our company."

"They are able to meet with challenging deadlines, and are able to turn work around quickly should the need arise."

"Rachel Bradley has a detailed knowledge of the publishing sector. Having Rachel as a central point of contact means that the advice is always tailored to our organisation, given her  knowledge of our business."

"Queries are responded to promptly, and with a pragmatic approach."

Key Clients

Astex Pharmaceuticals

The Company of Biologists

Cytocell Limited and Oxford Gene Technology Limited

Dementia UK

Cambridge Commodities

Wren Therapeutics

Astrid Media

Grey Wolf Therapeutics

Work highlights

  • Advised The Company of Biologists on a range of commercial agreements, including an agency agreement with a European publishing agent.
  • We drafted template trade mark licence agreements for the grant of trade mark licences by Cambridge Commodities to third party manufacturers of products to use Cambridge Commodities’ trade marks on their products.
  • Acted for Astrid Media on a licence agreement relating to European publishing rights.
  • Acting for the Charity relating to the drafting of a collaboration agreement with NHS Trusts for the provision of admiral nurses.
  • Represented a biotech company in its Research and Option agreement with a large global pharmaceutical company.
Next Generation Partners

Rachel Bradley - Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

[back to top]


Further information on Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Please choose from this list to view details of what we say about Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP in other jurisdictions.

East Anglia

Offices in Cambridge

London

Offices in London

South East

Offices in Basingstoke, Oxford, Reading, and Guildford

Legal Developments in the UK

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • Court of Justice rules on source of income for Derivative Residence applications

    On 2 October 2019, the Court of Justice delivered its judgment in Bajratari v Secretary of State for the Home Department (Directive 2004/38/EC) Case C-93/18 which concerns Chen applications and the source of funds for self-sufficiency. 
  • End of the ‚Äėcentre of life test‚Äô in Surinder Singh cases?

    In the recent case of¬† ZA (Reg 9. EEA Regs; abuse of rights) Afghanistan ¬† [2019] UKUT 281 (IAC ), the Upper Tribunal found that there is no basis in EU law for the centre of life test, as set out in Regulation 9(3)(a) of the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2016 (the ‚ÄúRegulations‚ÄĚ). It further found that it is not to be applied when Judges assess ¬†Surinder Singh ¬†cases that appear before them.
  • Terms of employment as a sole representative

    In this article we examine the working arrangements of sole representatives, looking at the terms and conditions of employment that the Home Office will expect a sole representative to have in order to qualify as a representative of an overseas business.  
  • Can Sole Representatives Be Shareholders?

    The Immigration Rules require that an applicant for a¬† sole representative visa ¬†is not ‚Äúa¬† majority shareholder in the overseas business‚ÄĚ.
  • Immigration Skills Charge - A Guide for Employers

    As a Sponsor, you may be required to pay the Immigration Skills Charge (ISC) each time you sponsor a migrant in the  Tier 2 General  or  Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) Long-term Staff  subcategory.
  • 5 FAQS about paragraph 320(11)

    In applications for entry clearance where the applicant has a negative immigration history in the UK, the application may be refused under the general grounds for refusal, which are found in part 9 of the Immigration Rules. Where an applicant has ¬†‚Äėpreviously contrived in a significant way to frustrate the intentions of the Immigration Rules‚Äô,¬† the application could be refused under paragraph 320(11). In this post we look at five frequently asked questions about paragraph 320(11).¬†
  • Multiple nationality and multiple citizenship (including dual nationality and dual citizenship)

    British nationality law permits multiple nationality and multiple citizenship, including dual nationality and dual citizenship.
  • Applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain in the Exceptional Talent or Promise Category

    The  Exceptional Talent  and Exceptional Promise categories are for individuals who are recognised leaders or emerging leaders in their field of expertise. There are a number of endorsing bodies for lots of different fields of work, including  artists and musicians ,  architects ,  digital experts ,  scientists  and  academics . While there isn’t an endorsing body for every expert, the growing list means that many individuals could enjoy the flexibility that this category has to offer. 
  • PARALLEL PROCEEDINGS ‚Äď CIVIL AND CRIMINAL

    Syedur Rahmanconsiders the factors that determine when civil proceedings can go ahead before,or at the same time as, criminal proceedings relating to the same circumstances.
  • Rights of appeal after the Immigration Act 2014

    The Immigration Act 2014 (‚Äúthe 2014 Act‚ÄĚ) reduced the circumstances in which the refusal of an immigration application will give rise to a right of appeal.¬†The¬† explanatory notes ¬†to the 2014 Act state that the Act was intended to restructure rights of appeal to the Immigration Tribunal. Previously, a right of appeal to the Immigration Tribunal existed against any of the 14 different immigration decisions listed in s.82 of the¬† Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002 ¬†(‚Äúthe 2002 Act‚ÄĚ). As explained below, whether or not the refusal of an immigration application currently generates a right of appeal depends on the subject matter of the application rather than its categorisation.