Firm Profile > Pinsent Masons LLP > Aberdeen , Scotland
Pinsent Masons LLP Offices
13 QUEEN'S ROAD
Pinsent Masons LLP > The Legal 500 Rankings
Banking and finance Tier 1
Pinsent Masons LLP covers the full gamut of finance work and also has specialist expertise in bank structural reforms, ring-fencings, loan sales and purchases, loan-on-loan financings, derivatives, ship finance work, asset-based lending and oil & gas reserve-based lending. The department, led by John MacIver, fields a specialist reserve-based lending sub-team and also has capabilities in debt capital markets. Michael Watson focuses on project finance work, Iain Macaulay handles project finance matters and Gillian Frew is a specialist in energy and infrastructure finance. Richard Scott is the main Aberdeen contact and was recently promoted to office head.
‘The banking and finance team is highly knowledgeable and experienced. It is extremely responsive, especially when dealing with anything that requires an urgent turnaround, and adopts a pragmatic approach to problems and challenges.‘
‘At Pinsent Masons, the knowledge of the market and expertise in executing transactions means the banking team exceeds its peers.‘
‘Pinsent’s finance experts work hard to deliver a joint support and to maintain a healthy dialogue on pertinent issues.‘
‘It is a team built on in-depth corporate banking knowledge, which is applied in a careful and commercial manner to ensure a transaction can be completed successfully within the required timescales.‘
‘Richard Scott is a skilled and knowledgeable banking lawyer. When discussing new instructions, Richard takes the time to really understand the commercial aspects of the transaction and, as a result, always identifies the optimum legal solution.‘
‘John Maciver provides excellent leadership to the team and a deep understanding of the range of issues that need to be managed when delivering a complex lending transaction.‘
The Royal Bank of Scotland
Wheatley Housing Group Limited
Verus Petroleum UK Limited
Ithaca Energy (UK) Limited
Dana Petroleum Limited
Zennor Petroleum Limited
Commercial litigation Tier 1
Pinsent Masons LLP is a respected player in the market and utilises its strong cross-border capabilities to act for clients across a wide range of industries. Recently, the team led by 'impressive operator' Jim Cormack QC, a solicitor advocate since September 2018, has been handling high-profile banking litigation, IP and IT disputes and product liability claims as well as commercial disputes arising from energy projects. Craig Connal QC, who also sits as arbitrator, and commercial litigator Jacqueline Harris are other key individuals of the team. Contentious IP expert David Woods made partner in May 2018.
‘Jim Cormack is very bright and highly regarded and if that wasn’t enough, he is also very pleasant to deal with.‘
‘David Woods is extremely knowledgeable and helpful.‘
‘Genuine customer service ethos.‘
‘The team has an excellent understanding of the commercial issues facing complex negotiations and of the contractual problems businesses have in today’s marketplace.‘
‘Able to explain a complex legal issue in a clear and concise manner.‘
Balfour Beatty Group
Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS)
William Grant & Sons
Galliford Try Group
Legal & General
KCA Deutag Group
Leveraging the firm's global network, Pinsent Masons LLP is recognised for its cross-border commercial property work, especially in the energy space. The Scottish team, led by Katharine Hardie, has a strong track record in the residential development sector and is also singled out for regeneration mandates; Paul Connolly is the key name for development matters. The group's high-profile client roster also ensures the team regularly handles large-scale asset acquisitions including shopping centres and cross-border portfolio acquisitions; it also assists with cross-border restructuring and refinancing deals. Ewan Alexander, energy property team head Jennifer Ballantyne, and property investment specialist Russell Munro are also recommended.
‘Pinsent Masons delivers a technically robust but commercially aware service across the full property life-cycle including developments, construction matters, property management work and investment issues.’
‘Distinguished by a real can-do attitude, the team balances the ultimate need to protect the client’s legal position with commercial acumen and a willingness to get the deal done.’
‘Paul Connolly has excellent client relationship management skills and can coordinate various and varied instructions.’
HFD Group Limited
CALA Management Limited
Scottish Widows Property Authorised Contractua lScheme
BAM TCP Atlantic Square Limited
New Uberior House Limited managed by Aerium
Glasgow City Council as administering Authority for Strathclyde Pension Fund
Ropemaker Properties Limited (BP Pension fund)
West Coast Captial
The real estate experts at Pinsent Masons LLP regularly act for high-profile local and national developers operating across Scotland. The team is spread across Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen and is recognised for its work for major oil and gas companies. Aberdeen-based Rodney Whyte leads the practice, which is also active in residential development projects. The team also handles energy developments, planning work and regenerations.
BDW Trading Limited (Barratt Homes)
The Pilkington Trust
Avant Homes (Scotland) Limited
Taylor Wimpey plc
Persimmon Homes Limited
ABZ Development Limited
GSS Developments(Aberdeen) Limited
Aberdeen Harbour Board
Kier Property Developments
Mactaggart & Mickel
Bellway Homes Limited
Construction Tier 1
With a superb reputation, Pinsent Masons LLP's 'excellent and forward-thinking' team handles the full spectrum of construction law, including transactional projects and disputes, and acts for an impressive public and private client roster across a number of sectors including infrastructure and transport, energy, manufacturing and real estate. Kenny Valentine heads the construction advisory and disputes team and the 'practical and pragmatic' Michael Allan is the main contact for transactional construction law. Brandon Nolan, known for his construction disputes work, and energy projects expert Nicholas Carlin are also recommended.
‘Kenny Valentine is extremely competent and pretty much always available.‘
‘Works very hard to understand the client and their commercial position.‘
‘Colin Fraser provides high-quality, pragmatic advice which is solutions-orientated.‘
‘You would want to have them on your side.‘
‘Provides commercially sound advice.‘
The City of Edinburgh Council
Pinsent Masons LLP has considerable strength in sectors including energy and infrastructure, advanced manufacturing and technology, healthcare and life sciences, retail and consumer, real estate and financial services. It also has a notable private equity and capital markets offering. Barry McCaig heads the team, which also include Rosalie Chadwick, Alan Diamond and Kevin Beattie.
‘The high-quality team provides clear and concise advice, and is not afraid to give an opinion.‘
‘Barry McCaig is good at seeing the situation from the client’s perspective. He provides the legal view but translates it into a commercial view too.‘
‘Knowledge is backed by strong practical advice that understands that businesses have decisions to make and don’t want lawyers who just try and tell you what you can’t do.’
‘Excellent knowledge of AIM regulations and working with listed companies.‘
‘Jonathan Kirkwood (legal director) is extremely thorough and very easy to deal with.‘
Blue Water Energy LLP
Belltown Power Limited
Petro Matad Limited
Range Resources Limited
Energy Assets Limited
Scottish Equity Partners LLP
JZ Capital Partners
Crime: fraud Tier 1
Praised for its full-service corporate crime and white-collar crime offering, Pinsent Masons LLP is a respected player in the market and as such receives regular instructions from corporate clients to assist with compliance matters, investigations, self-reporting and remediation as well as criminal proceedings. 'Superb white-collar crime guru' Tom Stocker heads up the 'extremely responsive' team; clients describe him as 'smart, dynamic and hugely experienced'.
‘Tom Stocker is a fantastic operator. He is strategic, sharp and tough and Scotland’s go-to lawyer for any white-collar crime issues.‘
‘Pre-eminent in Scotland for white-collar crime and contentious regulatory work.’
‘Takes the time to understand the client’s business.‘
‘Tom Stocker knows the area in depth.‘
Energy and projects work are cornerstones of Pinsent Masons LLP's Scottish practice. On the corporate front, the team acts for purchasers and vendors of renewable energy assets under the leadership of practice head Ian McCarlie, while the team's finance specialists regularly advise sponsors and banks on UK wind farm and solar refinancings. Legal director Kate Turner is a key name for low carbon, energy efficient schemes, decentralised energy projects and ESCO project structures for district heating projects. Also notable is the group's expertise in the dispute resolution space and regulatory matters. Chris McGarvey recently departed to CMS.
‘The team at Pinsent Masons is very knowledgeable and experienced in the energy sector. Its practitioners are highly responsive and willing to go that extra mile to meet very pressing deadlines.‘
‘Pinsent Masons is an exceptionally professional firm with a lot of experience in property and planning matters in the renewable energy sector.‘
‘Kate Turner is refreshingly pragmatic and provides original thinking whilst maintaining the legal due diligence required.’
InfraRed / TRIG
Ross Developments / HALO Kilmarnock
Environment Tier 1
Jennifer Ballantyne leads the 'proactive' Scottish environment team at Pinsent Masons LLP, which is a respected player in the market, handling a broad spectrum of environment law work in the energy, infrastructure, housing and manufacturing sectors. This includes, among other matters, regulatory advice and permitting assistance for energy and industrial installations, advice on projects and transactions, as well as litigation and regulatory enforcement support. Gordon McCreath and legal director Ross McDowall are recommended; both handle a wide range of sector-specific work.
‘Efficiently deals with the client’s requirements.‘
Kier Infrastructure and Overseas
Health and safety Tier 1
Noted for its broad health and safety practice, Pinsent Masons LLP's 'extremely professional and knowledgeable' team receives frequent instructions from high hazard industry players, including construction, waste, manufacturing and energy sector clients. As well as its expertise in handling investigations and prosecutions, the team led by the 'very good' Laura Cameron also provides regular compliance advice.
Pinsent Masons LLP's insolvency and restructuring group is notably strong in the oil and gas, renewables, care homes, retail and financial services sectors, with particular expertise in distressed loan sales and purchases and UK bank ring-fencing projects. Claire Massie leads the practice, which also fields Stacey Bairner, who specialises in the trading and restructuring of distressed debt; and senior associates Jennifer McCormick, Ainslie Benzie and Natalie Colaluca. The group was also recently strengthened by the arrival of senior consultant Colin McIntosh from Brodies LLP.
‘The Pinsent Masons team brings sector knowledge, an arsenal of AI capabilities and the ability to mobilise a much wider team across the UK.‘
‘The team’s breadth of experience in the non-performing loan space (both sell and buy side), the quality of its service and the level of its expertise is what sets Pinsent Masons apart.‘
‘Senior associate Ainslie Benzie is always happy to help and provide guidance when needed. She has a wealth of support and experience available within Pinsents to support as required.‘
‘Stacey Bairner and her associates Ross Cooper and Kevin Mulligan are all excellent and build up a relationship of reliance and trust with their clients within a short time.‘
‘Stacey Bairner is an excellent partner. She is always available, very level-headed, an excellent communicator, knows her stuff and is an absolute pleasure to work with.‘
‘Natalie Colaluca is a standout senior associate.‘
House of Fraser Limited House of Fraser
Tesco Personal Finance Plc
Lone Star Funds
FRP Advisory LLP
Ernst & Young
Intellectual property Tier 1
Pinsent Masons LLP provides end-to-end advice to its client roster of energy, food and drink, life sciences and technology companies on advisory and contentious IP matters in the UK and abroad. The team regularly handles portfolio management, brand strategy, market exclusivity and access issues, as well as strategic contracts. Jim Cormack QC leads the contentious IP team while legal director George Campbell heads up the non-contentious practice. Litigator David Woods is a key name for clients in the financial services, retail, energy and university sectors; and Chris Martin focuses on higher education work; senior associate Gillian Anderson is also recommended.
‘The team has an excellent level of knowledge and it deals very promptly with all enquiries.‘
‘George Campbell is great to work with and deals very efficiently with all work sent to him.‘
William Grant & Sons Limited
Thomas Tunnock Limited
Falkland Islands Government
University of Edinburgh
Jacobs and Turner Limited t/a Trespass
IT and telecoms Tier 1
The IT practice at Pinsent Masons LLP is singled out for its sector-focused approach, notably in the financial services, public and energy industries, where it is particularly recognised for its outsourcing and procurement work. Also noted is the firm's dedicated TMT litigation team, and its digital and IT work for universities in Scotland and abroad. Yvonne Dunn leads the TMT group and also heads up the TMT financial services and fintech practice.
‘Pinsent Masons has true expertise and market-leading insight on how technology is impacting business. It is the leading European firm for all aspects of fintech.‘
‘The individuals at Pinsent Masons stand out through their inter-personal relationship skills, attention to detail, constructive approach and thorough understanding of the needs of their clients’ business.‘
Calmac Ferries / David Mac Brayne
University of Edinburgh
Allied Irish Bank
Edinburgh International Conference Centre
Hiscox Underwriting Limited
Oil and gas Tier 1
Pinsent Masons LLP covers the full range of oil industry issues including decommissioning work, M&A, competition matters, procurements, tax mandates, disputes, financings and regulatory advice; the team also has a strong track record in corruption and anti-bribery cases. Aberdeen-based Bob Ruddiman is the firm's global head of oil and gas, while corporate expert Shirley Allen leads the Aberdeen group, which also includes legal director Neil Hehir and utilises the firm's experienced litigation department. In Glasgow, Rosalie Chadwick heads up the global corporate finance group and is a key name to note. David McEwing departed to Addleshaw Goddard.
‘Martin Ewan has an ability to quickly cut through any noise and get to the root of an issue, which is second to none. In addition to being extremely knowledgeable and commercially aware, Martin makes a particular effort to network both internally in the firm and externally. As a consequence, he is able to sign post the requirement to the correct people quickly and easily and do a personal handover, whilst maintaining overall involvement.‘
Shell UK Limited
Total E&P UK Limited
Siccar Point Energy
Suncor Energy Services Inc
John Wood Group
Pensions Tier 1
'Providing professional, seamless service', Pinsent Masons LLP has impressive strength in the pensions sector which translates into a steady flow of contentious and non-contentious mandates from employers, trustees and funds. The 'knowledgeable and pragmatic' team led by the 'highly experienced' Ian Gordon stands out for advising trustees of various defined benefit schemes on pension scheme funding agreements and security packages alongside buy-in and buy-out insurance contracts, among other issues. In the transactional space, where the team benefits from its strong co-operation with its corporate team, the group is well versed in handling pensions aspects of M&A transactions including pensions issues arising from solvent and insolvent corporate restructurings. The 'deeply knowledgeable, pragmatic and efficient' Ruth Tobias is 'highly recommended' for defined pension schemes.
‘The team has real bench strength.‘
‘Ruth Tobias is meticulous in her legal advice. She has a no-nonsense approach and gives clear and decisive opinions.‘
‘Provides straight-forward and solution-oriented advice.‘
‘The team is not afraid to offer advice that may not suit the client.‘
‘Like a good musical quartet, each individual works within a seamless approach while at the same time delivering individual excellence.‘
‘Jae Fassam is very knowledgeable and provides pragmatic and measured advice.’
The Plumbing and Mechanical Services(UK) Industry Pension Scheme
Babcock Naval Services Pension Scheme
Forth Ports Group Pension Scheme
Lothian Pension Fund
Trustees of the Scottish Solicitors Staff Pension Fund
RBS Ulster Bank
Marine Harvest Pension Scheme
Trustees of Global Santa Fe North Sea Final Salary Pension Scheme
Projects Tier 1
Pinsent Masons LLP's client roster in the projects space includes 3i, Balfour Beatty and Equitix alongside other funders, sponsors and public sector bodies. The team handles a vast variety of projects including hub schemes, new product development, PPP and PFI projects; student accommodation work, oil and gas matters and renewable energy issues. Recent work highlights also include significant matters in the healthcare and transport infrastructure space. The team is led by Edinburgh-based Michael Watson and includes Stuart Barr in the Glasgow office.
Property litigation Tier 1
Known for its national and international reach, Pinsent Masons LLP remains a popular choice for developers, landlords, occupiers, investors and operators requiring assistance with landlord and tenant-related disputes, breach of contract claims, development-related litigation and dilapidation claims. Craig Connal QC heads the 'knowledgeable' team, which includes 'utterly meticulous and intelligent' senior associate Fiona MacGregor; her areas of expertise include rent reviews, title and planning disputes alongside disputes over development agreements, among others.
‘Senior associate Fiona MacGregor fights her client’s corner and is pleasant to work with.’
‘Jacqueline Harris demonstrates great understanding of the law and procedural aspects in conducting big-ticket litigation.‘
‘The strength in depth and experience is unparalleled.‘
Legal & General
K/S Meadow Way
The Centre, Livingston
McColls Retail Group
Pinsent Masons LLP's Aberdeen-based corporate team leads on complex, high-value transactions in Scotland and overseas. The firm has recently continued to focus on its strategy of internationalisation and its specific sector strengths, namely in infrastructure, energy manufacturing, technology, real estate and financial services. Martin Ewan - whose 'ability to quickly cut through any noise and get to the root of an issue is second to none' - is the practice's key lawyer, leading the firm's oilfield technology practice. David McEwing left to join Addleshaw Goddard in early 2019.
‘Martin Ewan’s ability to quickly cut through any noise and get to the root of an issue is second to none. In addition to being extremely knowledgeable and commercially aware, Martin has made a particular effort to network both internally in the firm and externally. As a consequence, he is able to signpost the requirement to the correct people quickly and easily and do a personal handover, whilst maintaining overall involvement. To be honest, we’d move if he did and I’ve recommended him to other clients of mine.’
Ithaca Energy Limited
Isle of Man Government
Bahari Holding Company Limited
Pryme Group Holdings Limited
Three60 Energy Limited
McCaul Haulage Limited
Trifast Overseas Holdings Limited
Swire Oilfield Services Limited
Briggs Equipment UK Limited
Education Tier 2
Providing full-service advice, Pinsent Masons LLP is a respected player in the market, which leads to regular instructions from universities and higher education sector bodies on sector specific governance and regulatory matters, IP and IT issues, alongside procurement, corporate, employment law and campus estate property matters. The 'strong and well-regarded' team led by the 'excellent' Chris Martin has also been increasingly active in university accommodation project-related tax work and litigation arising out of regulatory frameworks.
‘Committed to its clients.‘
‘Understands the needs of its clients.‘
‘Its obvious to see how the team has developed its reputation in the sector.‘
‘Provides first-class service.‘
The University of Edinburgh
Edinburgh Business School
Robert Gordon’s University
University of Aberdeen
Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh
Higher Education Statistics Agency
Employment Tier 2
'Providing excellent support', Pinsent Masons LLP's 'thorough and pragmatic' team stands out for its expertise in contentious employment law work, representing clients at the Employment Tribunal and in senior employee and board level disputes. On the non-contentious side, much of the group's workload pertains to equal pay and TUPE issues, industrial relations and team moves with many of its instructions stemming from financial services, energy, infrastructure and manufacturing sector clients. Euan Smith and the 'extremely experienced and highly regarded' Diane Nicol are among the main contacts in Scotland; both act for an extensive blue-chip and plc client base. Katie Williams formerly based in Aberdeen, relocated to firm's Perth office, Australia, in June 2018.
‘Diane Nicol is a stand-out partner and drives high standards through the team to ensure that the team acts as true partner to the client.‘
‘Any issues are faced and solved quickly.‘
‘Very approachable and knowledgeable about the Employment Tribunal process in Scotland and how it differs from England and Wales.‘
‘James Cran suggests innovative solutions and explains technical points clearly.’
The Royal Bank of Scotland
Balfour Beatty Group
Standard Life Aberdeen
Royal BAM Group
David MacBrayne Group
Health Tier 2
Stuart Barr leads the healthcare team at Pinsent Masons LLP, which receives regular instructions from private equity houses, property funds, banks and corporates as well as public-sector players to advise on public infrastructure projects in the healthcare sector as well as transactional healthcare property portfolio matters.
hub South East Scotland
hub South West Scotland
Healthcare Centres PPP
Immigration Tier 2
Pinsent Masons LLP's 'very approachable and remarkably responsive' immigration group is part of the firm's employment law practice and puts significant emphasis on corporate immigration work, most notably in the energy, higher education, retail, infrastructure, sport and financial services sectors. Euan Smith and 'pragmatic and calm' legal director Joanne Hennessy are the main contacts.
‘The team has detailed knowledge and experience of immigration law as well as the process and approach usually taken by the Home Office.’
‘Provides tailored and practical advice.‘
‘Nothing is too much work for the team.’
Licensing Tier 2
Pinsent Masons LLP's broad licensing offering includes assistance with liquor, gambling and civic government licensing matters and attracts clients from various industries such as hospitality, leisure and tourism. As well as its advisory capacities, the team also benefits from its strong litigation background when representing clients at licensing board and court hearings, while it is able to call on colleagues from its real estate, restructuring and corporate departments when advising on matters at this interface. 'Highly regarded' legal director Audrey Ferrie heads the team.
Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC)
Royal Yacht Enterprises
Planning Tier 2
Pinsent Masons LLP's 'strong' planning team is led by its Birmingham and London offices with Jennifer Ballantyne being the main contact in Scotland. The team's strength lies in advising clients on energy, infrastructure and residential development projects, including contentious work such as planning appeal proceedings. The recommended Gary McGovern is another key member of the team and handles a wide range of planning and environmental law work.
‘Provides the breadth and depth of expertise the client requires.‘
‘Provides tailored advice.‘
‘Gordon McCreath is strategic, tactical and commercial.‘
Seagreen Wind Energy
Dumfries and Galloway Council
Barratt Homes / David Wilson Homes
Aberdeen Harbour Board
Beatrice Offshore Wind Farm
Corporate tax Tier 3
Pinsent Masons LLP's corporate tax team distinguishes itself through the wide-ranging corporate transactional and advisory work it handles for its enviable client roster. While maintaining its firmwide strength in the energy, real estate and private equity sectors, the firm has also been involved in significant mandates pertaining to share plans and incentives. Much of the practice's key recent work is made up of tax advice on multimillion-pound transactions, led by Christine Yuill.
‘The lawyers at Pinsent Masons get on with the job and deal with issues rather than treating them as obstacles.’
‘The team manage to distill very complicated subject areas into targeted pragmatic advice.’
‘Christine Yuill consistently provides quality pragmatic advice – she is clearly up to date on not just the legislation but market practice, she can respond quickly and concisely to queries – often answering questions you didn’t even know you needed to ask.’
Skyscanner Holdings Limited
Taylor Hopkinson/SeaFox Apollo 1 Limited
Nevis Capital LLP
Energy Assets Group Limited
Siccar Point Energy Limited
Pinsent Masons LLP > Firm Profile
Pinsent Masons is an international law firm with a long-standing reputation for delivering high-quality legal advice rooted in its deep understanding of the sectors and geographies in which its clients operate. In recent years it has achieved more tier 1 rankings in The Legal 500 UK guide than any other firm and been recognised among the most innovative law firms in Europe by the Financial Times.
The firm: With over 1,500 lawyers operating from 20 locations throughout the UK, Europe, Asia Pacific and the Middle East, Pinsent Masons is well-placed to advise on complex multi-jurisdictional transactions across a full range of legal disciplines.
Type of work undertaken: The firm has significant international credentials in the global energy, infrastructure, financial services and advanced manufacturing and technology sectors. In the UK, it also conducts market-leading work in sectors including real estate, government, retail, universities and higher education.
Services provided across these sectors include corporate and M&A, commercial, competition, litigation and arbitration, banking, restructuring, insurance, regulatory, construction, projects, pensions, property, planning and environmental, procurement, outsourcing, employment, share plans, technology and tax advice.
Pinsent Masons stands out in particular for its innovative approach to service delivery. For example, the firm operates a hub of freelance lawyers, called Vario, and has also developed Cerico, a cloud-based regulatory compliance solution. It has developed long-term service agreements, often referred to as ‘sole adviser’ relationships, with a number of blue-chip organisations.
Other offices: Australia, Beijing, Belfast, Birmingham, Dubai, Hong Kong, Istanbul, Leeds, London, Manchester, Munich, Paris, Qatar, Shanghai, Singapore.
|Senior partner||Richard Foley|
|Managing partner||John Cleland|
|Chairman, Scotland and Northern Ireland||Kirk Murdoch|
|Head of Aberdeen office||Roger Connon|
|Head of Glasgow office||Barry McCaig|
|Head of Edinburgh office||Ewan Alexander|
Staff FiguresNumber of UK partners (including legal directors) : 380 approx Number of other UK fee-earners : 1,300+
Top Tier Firm Rankings
- Banking and finance
- Commercial litigation
- Commercial property: Edinburgh and Glasgow
- Commercial property: elsewhere in Scotland
- Corporate and commercial: Edinburgh and Glasgow
- Crime: fraud
- Energy (excluding oil and gas)
- Health and safety
- Insolvency and corporate recovery
- Intellectual property
- IT and telecoms
- Oil and gas
- Property litigation