Firm Profile > Latham & Watkins > Paris, France

Latham & Watkins
45 RUE SAINT DOMINIQUE
75007 PARIS
France

Banking and finance: transactional work Tier 1

At Latham & Watkins, the finance practice has broad market exposure in leveraged finance, real estate and asset finance for lenders and borrowers, as well as market-leading capital markets expertise in areas such as high-yield bonds and US private placements. Among the firm's 'lawyers who understand business problems and come up with solutions' are Michel Houdayer who leads the practice, Xavier Farde who handles market-leading domestic finance transactions, and Lionel Dechmann who acts for equity sponsors, borrowers and lenders on private equity and LBO financings. Highly respected in the French market, the firm also handles a strong flow of large, cross-border transactions.

Practice head(s):

Michel Houdayer

Testimonials

Competent lawyers who are always available and business-driven at every level of seniority.

The team is composed of highly experienced and skilled professionals. Thanks to their strong track record of advising sponsors and banks on transactions in the leveraged loan and bond market, they have a very strong insight and deep and very up-to-date knowledge of deal precedents, market practices and investors’ acceptance on legal documentation.

Their strong expertise in legal and tax deal structuring is very helpful when providing the best advice and assisting us structuring in new transactions. They are very deal oriented, able to defend the interest of their client while helping to make a deal happen in the best conditions for all the parties. What is also highly appreciated is the quality of all their people from the partners to the most junior guys. They are definitively my preferred lawyers in terms of expertise and professionalism.

Xavier Farde and Lionel Dechmann, two partners based in Paris and specialised in financing, are for me two very good professionals with a strong reputation and position in the French LBO market.

The firm has extensive and excellent market and product knowledge.

Xavier Farde has a strong command and understanding of client needs. He is a flawless project manager with the capacity to mobilise specific knowledge within the firm on very short notice. The firm is known for excellence in service rendered and excellence in commercial knowledge and capacity to build long-term trusted relationships.

Key clients

Ardian

Astorg

Bridgepoint

Eurazeo

Intermediate Capital Group

Ipsen

Permira

Vivalto

TA Associate

Unither Pharmaceuticals

Arkea Banque Entreprises et Institutionnels

BNP Paribas

Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment

Deutsche Bank

Natixis

JP Morgan

Derivatives and structured finance Tier 1

Latham & Watkins is distinguished by its strength in innovative, resource-heavy transactions as well as in complex regulatory and contentious matters. Leveraging its ability to cover French, UK and US law, the team also shines in multi-jurisdictional deals. A broad sector focus ensures it is well versed across all the core asset classes, with its recent experience spanning CLO transactions, derivatives, trade receivable securitisations and multi-layered event-driven deals involving structured projects. Practice head Thomas Vogel is highly regarded and advises a mix of global financial institutions, investment managers, hedge funds and sovereign funds on structured finance and alternative investment structures. Counsel Suzana Sava-Montanari is ‘exceptionally effective’ and specialises in debt capital markets, structured finance and derivatives.

Practice head(s):

Thomas Vogel

Testimonials

The team provides high-quality advice at an acceptable price.’

We’ve worked with a few law firms in the credit risk transfer space, and I think that in terms of representing investors, Latham is by far the best.

Thomas Vogel and Suzana Sava-Montanari are very competent, experienced, smart and pleasant to work with.’

Suzana Sava-Montanari is incredible. On both drawn-out and highly compressed timelines she has excelled.

We can trust Suzana to be highly detail-oriented, spotting inconsistencies in mechanics that are often difficult to pick up and highlighting all issues for us to review from a commercial stand-point. At the same time, we also trust her judgement, and her insight on when to give and when to press.’

Suzana’s demeanour in negotiations is consistently one of calm, and of reasonableness, but also of firmness. These attributes, combined with keen organisational skills, consistent hard work, and availability to her clients, make Suzana exceptionally effective.’

Suzana is very much our favoured legal counsel for credit risk transfer transactions.’

Key clients

Goldman Sachs

BAML (France)

Deutsche Bank

Natixis

TOTAL

AXA France

Aviva France

Air Liquide

Club Med

Mariner Investments

Cairn Capital

Magnetar Capital

Al Mirqab Holdings

Ado Properties

EU, competition and distribution Tier 1

Latham & Watkins has a strong and experienced Paris practice comprising 11 lawyers in addition to the firm's Brussels and other international office capabilities. The practice excels at advising on landmark domestic and large-scale M&A transactions requiring filings at French and EU levels, including transactions requiring multiple filings across various jurisdictions. Recent highlights include several landmark domestic cartel cases and several damage claim disputes before French courts following previous antitrust condemnations. The team is co-headed by Jacques-Philippe Gunther, Frédéric Pradelles and the Paris and Brussels-based Adrien Giraud. Counsel Mathilde Saltiel is another key member.

Practice head(s):

Jacques-Philippe Gunther; Frédéric Pradelles; Adrien Giraud

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘A strong team dedicated to provide excellent work.’

‘Jacques-Philippe Gunther is clearly one of the best lawyers in competition law in France and Brussels. He finds innovative solutions and likes challenges.’

‘Counsel Mathilde Saltiel is a very good project leader and anticipates next moves. She always gives good advice.’

Key clients

Orange

Essilor Luxottica

CMA CGM

France Télévisions

Worldline

Orange

Philip Morris

L’Oréal

Auchan Holding

Air France

American Airlines

Edenred

CCR

ONET

Private equity: LBO Tier 1

Latham & Watkins combines a deep bench with longstanding experience and complementary strength in leveraged finance, making the group a titan in the market. The team acts on the biggest LBO transactions in France and has a wide range of expertise in the buy-outs of private and public companies, including competitive auctions, carve-outs and joint ventures. The practice attracts a stellar and varied client list that features fund sponsors, investors, banks and sellers alike. The key contacts are Alexander BenedettiDenis CritonAlexander CrosthwaiteThomas ForschbachGaëtan GianassoCharles-Antoine Guelluy and Olivier du Mottay.

Practice head(s):

Alexander Benedetti; Denis Criton; Alexander Crosthwaite; Thomas Forschbach; Gaëtan Gianasso; Charles-Antoine Guelluy; Olivier du Mottay

Testimonials

The corporate practice is unique in terms of skills.

Denis Criton is one of the best private equity lawyer in the French market.

Key clients

Ardian

Astorg

BC Partners

Bridgepoint

CMP Capital Management Partners

Eurazeo

ICG

PAI Partners

TA Associates

Capital markets: debt capital markets Tier 2

Best known for its premier high-yield debt practice, Latham & Watkins’ Paris arm also continues to increase its share of convertible bond offerings, investment grade debt matters and private placements. The group’s strong combination of French, US and UK law capability positions it as a key player in multi-jurisdictional offerings and its work for Total on its $4bn debt offering involved lawyers in Houston, Paris and London — Thomas Vogel led the French leg of the deal. The team also deserves credit for its balance between issuer and underwriter-side mandates, and it maintains close relationships with French and multinational corporates and banks. Department head Thomas Margenet-Baudry finds ‘innovative solutions’ and is widely lauded for his strength in high-yield debt.

Practice head(s):

Thomas Margenet-Baudry

Testimonials

I cannot think of a better lawyer than Thomas Margenet-Baudry to advise a French issuer on a high-yield bond. He combines very strong legal expertise, real business sense and serious hard work.’

Thomas is incredibly smart and goes the extra mile, beyond his core area of expertise, to find innovative solutions to complex issues. It is an absolute pleasure to work with Thomas: he is extremely nice, he has great listening skills, and he is very hands-on but with a clear sense of what is important.

Key clients

Ipsen

Total

Capital markets: equity capital markets Tier 2

The team at Latham & Watkins finds favour for its strong combination of France and US-qualified lawyers, which sources say gives ‘comfort and reassurance to French issuers’. The group also regularly acts for multinational issuers, as well as domestic and global banks. The firm sets itself apart through its impressive track record in IPOs and is particularly sought after for French sponsor exits — as well as block trades post-IPO. It also demonstrates growing activity in the convertible bond space. High-yield debt specialist Thomas Margenet-Baudry also has strong experience in IPOs and rights issues.

Practice head(s):

Thomas Margenet-Baudry

Testimonials

The distinctive skills of the team are its top-notch knowledge of the sector, its excellent drafting capacity, its respect of deadlines and its ability to adapt to its clients’ needs.’

The team is bicultural (French and American) which gives a lot of comfort and reassurance to French issuers.’

Working with Thomas Margenet-Baudry is very reassuring for a client: his ability to take you through complex issues, his availability (despite his very busy schedule), his patience and his absolute commitment to get the deal done are key assets in a deal process.’

Data privacy and data protection Tier 2

Latham & Watkins specialises in complex cross-border data protection matters. Key sectors for the group include media, consumer goods, pharmaceutical and e-commerce. With Myria Saarinen, the practice has an experienced litigator at the helm, but Saarinen also frequently assists clients with the conduct of large-scale GDPR audits, the negotiation of commercial agreements involving strong data protection components, and data privacy analyses. Data subject access requests and data breach notification procedures are other key areas of expertise.

Practice head(s):

Myria Saarinen

Industry focus: IT and internet Tier 2

At Latham & Watkins, Jean-Luc Juhan's three-lawyer team advises a prominent client base made up of several of France's high-profile companies, including major luxury goods brands. The practice assists clients with contract negotiations regarding the setting up of IT and digital solutions systems. In recent work, the group assisted a major client with the establishment of a new payment solution and another major client on a blockchain project. The practice also advises several leading internet platform companies.

Practice head(s):

Jean-Luc Juhan

Testimonials

‘The team brings together a mix of pragmatism and a down-to-earth and proactive attitude. It is available, flexible and creative, able to think outside the box and look at all possibilities.’

‘The team has real legal and business expertise and great negotiating experience in relation to innovative matters such as fintech and blockchain issues. Advice is always business-oriented, very efficient and tailored.’

‘Jean-Luc Juhan is always available, pragmatic and solid. Having him at one’s side on a project is very reassuring thanks to his extensive knowledge of the industry and its key players. He is also a great negotiator.’

Mergers and acquisitions Tier 2

Latham & Watkins is among the lead firms for deal value in the French M&A market. Although regularly active in jumbo- and large-cap matters, the group is visible across all market segments and recently saw an uptick in transactional work for listed companies. Clients regularly trust the team with matters that also require expertise in financing, tax, antitrust and employment law, allowing the group to draw on its in-house colleagues to provide a seamless service. Pierre-Louis Cléro directs the practice which also includes Olivier du Mottay, Thomas Forschbach, Gaëtan Gianasso, who splits his time between Paris and London, Alexander Benedetti, Denis Criton and Alexander Crosthwaite. Semih Bayar Eren made counsel in January 2019.

Practice head(s):

Pierre-Louis Cléro

Testimonials

For complex deals, this team is extremely competent and the service received is first class. Extremely reactive, works around the clock where necessary. Provides high-quality, technical advice.

A young team that has got its pulse on the market and listens to its clients.

Olivier du Mottay is probably one of the best M&A lawyers in France. He is able to provide very sharp, strategic and pragmatic solutions on very complex issues. His level of personal engagement is high.

Key clients

Air France-KLM

Atos

Essilor Luxottica

Eurazeo

Galeries Lafayette

Groupe Bertrand

L’Oréal

Siemens

Vallourec

Wendel

Tax Tier 2

Latham & Watkins has a strong transactional practice, advising on the structuring of many of the firm's major private equity and M&A deals. The team's recent workload included an impressively high volume of LBO transactions. In addition, the practice assists on cross-border DCM and finance transactions. Practice heads Xavier Renard and Olivia Rauch-Ravisé are highly recommended.

Practice head(s):

Xavier Renard; Olivia Rauch-Ravisé

Testimonials

‘The team has established expertise in the private equity sector’

‘Xavier Renard is a recognised professional recommended for French and international transactions’

Key clients

Worldline

Auchan Holding

Bridgepoint

Astorg

Imerys

Intermediate Capital Group

Shandong Ruyi Investment Holding

Ardian

HRA

TA Associates

Total

Eutelsat

Ipsen S.A.

Permira

Eurazeo

Pernod Ricard SA

Vivalto

Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment

Wendel

TechnipFMC

Natixis S.A.

Deutsche Bank

Dispute resolution: International arbitration Tier 3

Latham & Watkins’ practice is led by the highly experienced Fernando Mantilla-Serrano, who also jointly heads the firm’s global practice. The Paris-based team represents Latin American states, French companies and several international corporations, handling commercial and investment arbitration. The practice also handles cases in relation to the US, Europe and Africa. It is notably involved in key matters in the oil and gas and construction sectors, while also handling commercial and life sciences-related matters. John Adam is the other key member.

Practice head(s):

Fernando Mantilla-Serrano

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘The firm has a deep bench of talented and experienced practitioners with remarkable Spanish language capacity.’

‘The very quick and smart Fernando Mantilla-Serano delivers powerful arguments with aplomb and diplomacy.’

‘The hard-working John Adams knows all the details of a case.’

Key clients

Republic of Colombia

Cofradis S.A

GICOM

Grupo Chaidneme

Laboratoires Servier

Recope

Republic of Ecuador

Employment Tier 3

Latham & Watkins' five-lawyer team assists many leading French, German and international companies, including blue-chip names in the aerospace, banking and pharmaceutical sectors. Headed by Matthias Rubner, the practice advises on restructuring projects and has particular expertise providing support in the context of large-scale M&A transactions. The team is also active in litigation, for example in a complex mass dispute relating to the payment of bonuses. Former counsel Emily Grimshaw joined Ngo Jung & Partners.

Practice head(s):

Matthias Rubner

Testimonials

‘The team is great and very responsive. They do not only provide excellent legal advice, but they also share their experience. They help clients in finding a solution.’

‘Matthias Rubner is an excellent lawyer: he is easy to talk to, knows his subject and takes good care of clients.’

Dispute resolution: Commercial litigation Tier 4

Latham & Watkins

Practice head(s):

Fabrice Fages; Myria Saarinen

Testimonials

‘A competent, detail-driven and customer-oriented team which understands clients’ needs and provides a world class advice. Answers are concrete and focused on problem solving’.

Latin America: International firms > International arbitration > International arbitration Tier 2

Latham & Watkins is singled out for its 'efficient and effective case analysis as well as its excellent communication'.  The team, led by Paris-based Fernando Mantilla-Serrano, has notable strength in the oil and gas, energy and construction sphere handling a mix of treaty cases and commercial arbitration proceedings. It continues to represent Refinadora Costarricense de Petróleo in an ICC arbitration brought by CNPC, a PRC state-owned oil and gas company, and is representing a multinational mining group in a series of ICC arbitrations arising out of a shareholders' agreement.  On the investment treaty side, Mantilla-Serrano and New York-based Claudia Salomon are representing the Republic of Columbia in an ICSID arbitration brought by Eco Oro Minerals. Sophie Lamb, new partner John Adam and associate Esperanza Barrón-Baratech are also names to note within the 22-strong team.

The firm: Latham & Watkins is a leading international law firm serving multinational companies, start-ups, investment banks, private equity funds, venture capital firms, sovereign wealth funds, governments and other organisations. The firm’s global platform spans Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the US, and consists of internationally recognised practices across a wide spectrum of transactional, litigation, corporate and regulatory areas. Latham’s lawyers offer unrivalled legal resources and strategic commercial thinking to provide clients with innovative solutions to complex business and legal matters.

The Paris office boasts more than 90 lawyers and regularly handles a wide range of transactions, disputes and regulatory matters on behalf of French, European and international companies, private equity firms and financial institutions. The lawyers’ depth of knowledge in these sectors – achieved through their experience and close ties with the world’s financial institutions and industrial centres – means their clients can expect the highest quality legal services in all aspects of the representation.

Latham & Watkins’ Paris-based lawyers are dedicated to providing consistent quality, creativity and innovative solutions to the most complex legal and business matters. The lawyers work collaboratively across legal disciplines and geographic boundaries to achieve the best results for clients.

With lawyers qualified to practise under French, English, European and US law, the office is constantly recognised as a leader in the French market.

Areas of practice: Very few law firms operating in the French market can match the depth of Latham’s practice as well as the breadth of its geographic platform and the robust technology that underpins its performance. Latham’s lawyers in Paris maintain in-depth knowledge of a wide range of industries, including a robust understanding of the economic and regulatory environments in which they operate. The firm’s clients are leading market participants in the banking, energy, hospitality and leisure, insurance, life sciences, luxury, services and telecommunications sectors and Latham’s lawyers routinely advise both listed and emerging private companies.

Department Name Email Telephone
Banking and finance
Capital markets
Competition/European law
Data privacy
Dispute resolution
Employment
Energy
Intellectual property
International arbitration
M&A
Private equity
Real estate
Regulatory
Restructuring
Structured finance
Tax
Technologies
Photo Name Position Profile
 John Adam  photo John Adam John Adam is a partner in the Paris and Madrid offices of Latham &…
 Semih Bayar Eren  photo Semih Bayar Eren
 Alexander Benedetti  photo Alexander Benedetti Alexander Benedetti is a partner in the Paris office of Latham &…
 Bénédicte Brémond  photo Bénédicte Brémond Bénédicte Large Bremond is counsel in the Paris office of Latham &…
 Pierre-Louis Cléro  photo Pierre-Louis Cléro Pierre-Louis Cléro is a partner of Latham & Watkins and the Local…
 Denis Criton  photo Denis Criton Denis Criton is a partner in the Paris office of Latham &…
 Alexander Crosthwaite  photo Alexander Crosthwaite Alexander Crosthwaite is a partner in the Paris office of Latham &…
 Lionel Dechmann  photo Lionel Dechmann Lionel Dechmann is a partner in the Finance Department in the Paris…
 Hervé Diogo Amengual  photo Hervé Diogo Amengual Hervé Diogo Amengual is a partner in the Paris office of Latham…
 Michael Ettannani  photo Michael Ettannani
 Fabrice Fages  photo Fabrice Fages Fabrice Fages is a partner in the Paris office of Latham &…
 Xavier Farde  photo Xavier Farde Xavier Farde is a partner in the Finance Department and is Office…
 Thomas Forschbach  photo Thomas Forschbach Thomas Forschbach is a partner in Latham & Watkins’ London and Paris…
 Etienne Gentil  photo Etienne Gentil Etienne Gentil is counsel in the Paris office of Latham & Watkins,…
 Gaëtan Gianasso  photo Gaëtan Gianasso  Gaëtan Gianasso is a partner in the London and Paris offices of…
 Adrien Giraud  photo Adrien Giraud
 Charles-Antoine Guelluy  photo Charles-Antoine Guelluy Charles-Antoine Guelluy is a partner in the Paris office of Latham &…
 Jacques-Philippe Gunther  photo Jacques-Philippe Gunther
 Michel Houdayer  photo Michel Houdayer Michel Houdayer is a partner and Local Chair of Latham & Watkins’…
 Carla-Sophie Imperadeiro  photo Carla-Sophie Imperadeiro Carla-Sophie Imperadeiro is counsel in Latham & Watkins’ Finance Department. She has…
 Jean-Luc Juhan  photo Jean-Luc Juhan Jean-Luc Juhan is a partner in the Paris office of Latham &…
 Patrick Laporte  photo Patrick Laporte Patrick Laporte is a partner in the Paris office of Latham &…
 Fernando Mantilla-Serrano  photo Fernando Mantilla-Serrano Fernando Mantilla-Serrano is a partner in the Paris office of Latham &…
 Thomas Margenet-Baudry  photo Thomas Margenet-Baudry Thomas Margenet-Baudry is a partner in the Paris office of Latham &…
 Olivia Rauch-Ravise  photo Olivia Rauch-Ravise Olivia Rauch-Ravisé is a partner in the firm’s Tax Department and the…
 Xavier Renard  photo Xavier Renard Xavier Renard is a partner in the Paris office of Latham &…
 Matthias Rubner  photo Matthias Rubner Matthias Rubner is a partner in the Paris office of Latham &…
 Myria Saarinen  photo Myria Saarinen Myria Saarinen is a partner in the Litigation & Trial Department of…
 Mathilde Saltiel  photo Mathilde Saltiel
 Suzana Sava-Montanari  photo Suzana Sava-Montanari Suzana Sava-Montanari is a counsel in the Paris office of Latham &…
 Thomas Vogel  photo Thomas Vogel Thomas Vogel is a partner in the Corporate Department of Latham &…
 Olivier du Mottay  photo Olivier du Mottay Olivier du Mottay is a corporate partner in Latham & Watkins’ Paris…
Number of lawyers : 2,200+
at this office : 90+
English
French
German
Italian
Mandarin
Spanish
Contact : Xavier Farde (managing partner)
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