Shearman & Sterling LLP > London, England > Firm Profile

Shearman & Sterling LLP
9 APPOLD STREET
LONDON
EC2A 2AP
England

Corporate and commercial > Financial services: non-contentious/regulatory Tier 2

Shearman & Sterling LLP is most known for its transatlantic regulatory expertise, with the London team often working alongside the firm's US lawyers on work for an impressive international clientbase. Owing to the reputation of department head Barney Reynolds for financial markets regulation, the group is often called upon by sovereign clients to advise on market infrastructure issues. Thomas Donegan is another core member of the team, handling advisory and transactional work in the banking, brokerage, insurance and financial products arenas. John Adams leads the investment funds group and assists the regulatory team in relation to UK and European fund managers and investment products. Senior associate Ellerina Teo is increasingly strong for fintech regulation.

Practice head(s):

Barney Reynolds

Testimonials

Barney Reynolds’ insight, both technical and geopolitical, ultimately guided us to a commercially acceptable and legally sound outcome.’

The team that Barney assembled and led was knowledgeable across multiple key markets and ultra responsive (especially given the COVID restrictions).’

The team led by Barney Reynolds is incredibly competent, disciplined and delivers to very high standard. Barney himself is always on top of issues and ensure quality deliveries. He has a very broad view of industry trends in financial services and a wholistic approach to deliver results and resolve problems. The team works very collaboratively with clients.’

Barney Reynolds is one of the most astute lawyers I have worked with in 30 years of banking. He has a very detailed approach to issues and always creatively finds solutions.’

Key clients

Bank of America

Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. group (including ICE Clear Europe and ICE Futures Europe)

Bondholders of London Capital & Finance plc

Archer-Daniels-Midland (ADM Investor Services)

Bradesco

Citibank

Riverstone Insurance

OMERS

ICE Benchmark Administration

Alpha FX

First Eagle Investment

Abu Dhabi Global Market

ADNOC

ABSA (former Barclays Africa)

Goldman Sachs

Fairfax Financial Group

Attestor Capital

Intuit Limited

Work highlights

  • Continue to advise ICE Benchmark Administration in aspects of the benchmarks operated by them.  In particular, advised ICE Benchmark, the administrators of the LIBOR benchmark, on a variety of legal and regulatory matters associated with the proposed transition away from LIBOR to using so-called “risk free” rates.
  • Have been advising certain bondholders and the creditors’ committee of London Capital & Finance plc (LC&F) in relation to Dame Gloster’s high profile report into regulatory failure, a judicial review of the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) and in the administration of LC&F
  • Advised the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) on the establishment and launch of two new trading units: ADNOC Trading and ADNOC Global Trading, both based in Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM). The launch of the two new trading units represent the next step in ADNOC’s expansion of its global presence as it takes steps to increase value in its refining and trading activities.

Finance > Debt capital markets Tier 2

Shearman & Sterling LLP advises issuers, underwriters and sponsors on the full spectrum of debt capital markets transactions, both public and private, including equity-linked notes, investment-grade offerings, liability management transactions, and programme establishments for notes, commercial paper and other debt instruments. Trevor Ingram  leads the European capital markets practice and specialises in both high-yield and investment-grade bonds, particularly in emerging markets. He acted for South African company Sasol Limited in its offering of $1bn in notes. Marwa Elborai mainly handles high-yield offerings but, as part of her broader DCM practice, handles issuance for large corporates such as Anglo American. Pawel Szaja handles both equity and debt capital markets transactions, with recent work including advised on Rule 144a/Reg S MTN programmes. Sam Brodie, who joined from Akin Gump LLP, advises on complex financial restructurings and workouts of distressed bonds and private placement notes. David Dixter joined Milbank.

Practice head(s):

Trevor Ingram

Key clients

Anglo American Capital plc

BNP PARIBAS, Credit Agricole CIB, Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC, J.P. Morgan, Societe

Generale , BBVA, BofA Securities, COMMERZBANK, HSBC, ING, Mizuho International plc, Natixis, UniCredit

BBVA, Citigroup, HSBC, Mizuho Securities, Natixis

Sasol Limited

BNP PARIBAS, Credit Agricole CIB, Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC, J.P. Morgan, Societe Generale, BBVA, BofA Securities, COMMERZBANK, HSBC, ING, Mizuho International plc, Natixis, UniCredit

A variety of financial institutions

Work highlights

  • Advised Anglo American Capital plc in connection with multiple offerings including both of their $1.5bn senior notes offerings and their $1bn senior notes offering.
  • Advised ArcelorMittal on multiple offerings including their $2bn ordinary shares and convertible notes offerings and their $250m cash tender offer.
  • Represented Sasol Limited in connection with the offering of $650m 4.375% notes due 2026 and $850m 5.500% notes due 2031 issued by its indirect wholly owned subsidiary Sasol Financing USA LLC and guaranteed by Sasol Limited.

Finance > Derivatives and structured products Tier 2

Shearman & Sterling LLP 'constantly provides high-quality legal analysis for complex transactions'. Best known for its derivatives practice, which has market-leading expertise on equity derivatives, the firm is increasingly involved in complex structured products, particular in the areas of structured equity and margin loans. As well as work on credit default swaps, stock lending and repos, margin lending, clearing documentation, prime brokerage arrangements, debt trading and regulatory advice, the firm also understands clearing issues, and ICE Clear Europe is among its key clients. Patrick Clancy leads the practice and focuses on derivatives transactions and bespoke structured products. He has recently advised numerous clients on the impact of LIBOR reform on derivatives contracts. James Duncan has in-depth knowledge of derivatives and also advises on the structured finance aspects of M&A, asset finance and leveraged finance transactions. He recently assisted Ardagh with a complex multibillion-euro financing structure and hedging arrangements with numerous banks. Counsel Leona McManus and senior associate Sara Couling are also recognised practitioners in this market.

Practice head(s):

Patrick Clancy

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘The Shearman & Sterling team constantly provides high-quality legal analysis for complex transactions. It is a true legal adviser for the company and is always available on short term notice for any requests. The team operates highly professional and has dedicated individuals for the various areas to be covered.’

All individuals are highly qualified and able to quickly provide legal summaries or advise for any short term requests or new complex transactions. There is a very close alignment with the company on all legal matters and any issues are proactively communicated. The company has a long term and trustful business relationship with the London office, namely James Duncan, Leona McManus and Patrick Clancy. The team is always able to provide detailed legal feedback under high time pressure and to address any potential legal issues upfront to help the company with their business decisions on new financings.’

‘The team was our external counsel in one of the project financing transactions where we acted as a lender and a hedge provider. the works tirelessly to ensure a smooth process and execution of the transaction on both sides (loan and hedge).’

‘I was in contact with counsel Leona McManus who was outstanding in her work and advise provided to us. She met every deadline sat for deliverables, and always looks out for the client’s interests. Leona and the team have excellent knowledge of the Islamic Finance and hedging sector.’

‘The team worked tireless throughout the transaction to ensure our positions were understood and we had all the protections we required. Having a team to represent the agents only made the team more focused on the concerns we had rather than the lenders. they were always available for calls even with a restructure mid way through. They informed us on the wider transaction and were there to guide when the closing and completion had to take place and the the various steps involved.’

‘Sara Couling and Patrick Clancy knew how structure of the facility and the issues we were facing when comments came back from the borrower. they made good suggestions on how to work around certain issues. They were amazing to work with and explained the consequences on some of the inserts included in the documents.’

‘A very strong derivatives practice, in particular on complex strategic equity derivatives.’

‘James Duncan is a go-to partner for complex strategy equity derivatives transactions. He has consistently delivered outstanding support on our deals, in each phase, from legal structuring to execution.’

Key clients

Mubadala Capital

Ardagh

ICE Clear Europe

Work highlights

  • Advising Mubadala Capital, the financial investment arm of Mubadala Investment Company in connection with the establishment of an evergreen origination platform with Barings, one of the world’s leading financial services firms.
  • Advising Ardagh Group’s Treasury team on hedging matters for a number of years. Ardagh has a complex multibillion-Euro financing structure and hedging arrangements have been established with numerous banks.
  • Advised Liberty Global with respect to its hedging arrangements in connection with the financing for the merger between Virgin Media and O2 UK Operations. The merger transaction values O2 at £12.7bn and Virgin Media at £18.7bn, both on a total enterprise value basis.

Finance > High yield Tier 2

Shearman & Sterling LLP is ‘an approachable firm that takes time to listen to clients’ requirements before finding a solution which works‘. Known for its work for private equity sponsors, commercial banks, investment banks, mezzanine and second-lien providers, and corporate borrowers on leveraged and acquisition financings. A key deal showing the firm’s role in innovative areas of the markets was Ardagh Metal Packaging’s $2.8bn high yield green bond offering that will finance or refinance eligible green projects as part of the Ardagh Group Green Financing Framework.  European regional managing partner and  EMEA finance team leader Ward McKimm and head of European capital markets Trevor Ingram are the principal practitioners, along with EMEA high yield specialist Marwa Elborai, who exhibits ‘a great level of creativity and problem-solving skills'. US-qualified senior associate Gordon Houseman increasingly plays a pivotal role in major deals.

Practice head(s):

Ward McKimm; Trevor Ingram

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘An approachable firm that takes time to listen to clients’ requirements before finding a solution which works’.

‘Good client service in terms of proactive and insightful advice, partners making their time readily available on deals, time and quality of response.’

‘A small firm, but high-quality individuals. Great client focus.’

‘This practice has a great depth of market exposure enabling them to advise us appropriately on the issues that we bring to them on our financing.’

‘They take responsibility to deliver on transaction timelines.’

‘Trevor Ingram worked closely with us on a transaction and was an invaluable source of knowledge with strong experience across the HY asset class.’

‘Marwa Elborai has vast experience, great level of creativity and problem-solving skills. She’s always available and works around the clock to deliver the best quality legal services to the clients. She’s my go-to person for complex legal questions.’

‘Trevor Ingram is a very good lawyer who is very responsive and commercial in his outlook.’

Key clients

J.P. Morgan, BNP PARIBAS, BofA Securities, Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank Securities, Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC, ING, RBC Capital Markets, Scotiabank, Societe Generale

Frigoglass S.A.I.C.

HSBC, NatWest Markets, CIC Market Solutions, DNB Markets, ING, MUFG, Santander Corporate & Investment Banking

Ardagh Packaging Finance plc and Ardagh Holdings USA Inc.

Blackrock Financial Management Inc.

Synthomer plc

Barclays Bank PLC, Goldman Sachs International, Nomura International plc, Deutsche Bank AG, London Branch, Lloyds Bank Corporate Markets plc, Coöperatieve Rabobank U.A., trading as Rabobank London.

Paymentsense Limited

Tereos SCA

Goldman Sachs International

AlbaCore Capital Group

Work highlights

  • Ardagh Metal Packaging $2.8bn High Yield Green Bond Offering in connection with Business Combination.
  • Frigoglass S.A.I.C.’s €260m High Yield Bond Offering.
  • Synthomer plc’s €520m Inaugural High Yield Bond.

Industry focus > Emerging markets Tier 2

Shearman & Sterling LLP is 'an exceptional law firm, highly committed, knowledgeable, creative and solution-driven'. The London office has a track record of involvement in jurisdictions as diverse as Kenya, Cameroon, Mozambique, Nigeria, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Brazil and Argentina. In the projects space, it has frequently been involved in high-profile emerging markets projects, transactions and disputes, regularly advising on first-in-country and first-in-kind matters. Iain Elder has extensive experience in the development and financing of energy and infrastructure projects, a practice he leads in EMEA, as well as being head of the Africa strategy group. In that practice, Nicholas Buckworth is also highly recommended. Sanja Udovicic is 'an outstanding lawyer with a commercial and collaborative approach' to advising development banks, ECAs, Islamic financiers and sponsors on energy and natural resources projects. Of counsel John Inglis also handles power generation projects, while senior associate Colm Ó hUiginn has experience in solar projects in Azerbaijan.

Practice head(s):

Iain Elder

Testimonials

‘Shearman & Sterling have robust network with top-tier local legal firms on the ground, which enables them to provide reliable and outstanding legal service to clients. Moreover, the partners in the firm has strong leadership to lead such local firms hence client always enjoy excellent service.’

‘John Inglis has long listed track records, working for big-scale projects in most of the emerging markets in the globe. This makes him not only appreciated by every stakeholder in the markets, but also provides cutting-edge solutions for clients, which we cannot observe in other instances. Shearman & Sterling is an exceptional law firm. We very much appreciate working with them and can highly recommend their services.’

‘The legal advisors of Shearman & Sterling are highly committed, knowledgeable, creative, solution-driven – just what you need to close a deal.’

‘A great emerging markets practice for project finance. Very focused on solving problems, not afraid to give a frank assessment of risks and exercise their judgment to develop a recommended course of action.’

‘Sanja Udovicic is particularly noteworthy. She is advising us on a power project financing in Jordan. I’ve worked with her for a number of years and think she is an outstanding lawyer with a commercial and collaborative approach. She doesn’t just highlight issues, she comes up with solutions. She gives an honest assessment of the risks and exercises her judgment to propose a recommended course of action. She also does an excellent job of herding the cats on complex transactions to move the deal forward.’

‘Very good at getting the high-value, highly complex projects structured and done – a creative problem solving firm. Key attributes for the emerging markets.’

‘Nick Buckworth – one of the market leaders. Iain Elder – excellent on sponsor side.’

Key clients

Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar)

Golar LNG Limited

SACE S.p.A.

Notore Chemical Industries Plc

Emirates Global Alumina

NEOM

Work highlights

  • Advised Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar) on the development and financing of the Sharjah Multi-fuel Waste-to-Energy project in the Emirate of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.
  • Advised Golar LNG in connection with all aspects of the provision of a floating liquefaction facility offshore Mauritania and Senegal.
  • Advising SACE and the SACE Lenders on the financing for the modernisation and expansion of the Middle East Oil Refinery in Egypt.

Projects, energy and natural resources > Oil and gas Tier 2

Shearman & Sterling LLP’s international oil and gas practice is described by clients as ‘exceptional’ and handles complex transactions and disputes across Africa and the Middle East. Headed by Iain Elder, the group focuses on project finance, developments, and major gas projects. Sanja Udovicic is a key name, alongside former London office head Nick Buckworth, who has three decades of experience in project development and finance. Counsel John Inglis handles upstream oil and gas matters, and has a strong presence in Asia.

Practice head(s):

Iain Elder

Testimonials

‘Shearman & Sterling is an exceptional law firm. We very much appreciate working with them and can highly recommend their services. The legal advisors are highly committed, knowledgeable, creative, solution-driven – just what you need to close a deal.’

’Highly efficient and  professional team, tailor-made, “lean” project team.’

‘Iain Elder – professional with a business mindset.’

Key clients

Golar LNG Limited

SACE S.p.A.

Notore Chemical Industries Plc

Work highlights

  • Advised Golar LNG in connection with all aspects of the provision of a floating liquefaction facility for use by BP.
  • Advised SACE and the SACE Lenders on the financing for the modernisation and expansion of the Middle East Oil Refinery in Egypt(“Midor”).
  • Advising on the development and financing of an agro-fertiliser plant expansion project at its existing site in Onne, Rivers State, Nigeria.

Projects, energy and natural resources > Power (including electricity, nuclear and renewables) Tier 2

US firm Shearman & Sterling LLP’s power practice group is singled out as being ‘exceptional’ by clients and houses a team of ‘market leaders’ including practice head Iain Elder. The team handles large project financing mandates across emerging markets and has expertise acting in energy transactions across Asia and the Middle East. Nicholas Buckworth has over three decades of experience advising sponsors on financing developments across EMEA, as does Sanja Udovicic who is a key name for lenders, while John Inglis handles renewable energy and infrastructure projects for power generation. The group can leverage its substantial international offering on cross-border work, and liaises with its offices in Abu Dhabi and Germany. Katie Hicks and Tim Sheddick departed the firm to join the global project development practice at White & Case LLP in early 2021.

Practice head(s):

Iain Elder

Testimonials

‘The lead partners are exceptionally knowledgeable and are innovative in coming up with solutions to complex problems. The partners are backed with high quality senior associates who are clearly partner material in the offing.’

‘Nick Buckworth, John Inglis and Iain Elder are leaders in their fields and will make sure that they are available to assist rather than relying on associates’

Nick Buckworth is one of the market leaders. Iain Elder is excellent on the sponsor side.’

John Inglis provides excellent leadership. He has deep knowledge and abundant experience in the sector which clients can rely on. What makes him unique is that he is always forward looking, and gathers as much information as he can, to utilize it in future.’

Shearman & Sterling is an exceptional law firm. We very much appreciate working with them and can highly recommend their services. The legal advisors are highly committed, knowledgeable, creative, solution-driven – just what you need to close a deal.’

Very good at getting the high value, highly complex projects structured and done – a creative, problem solving firm.

Shearman does a great job of managing a complex transaction and staying on top of relevant issues/driving the process forward. Sanja Udovicic is particularly noteworthy. I’ve worked with her for a number of years and think she is an outstanding lawyer with a commercial and collaborative approach.’

Key clients

Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar)

NEOM

Work highlights

  • Advised Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar) on the development and financing of the Sharjah Multi-fuel Waste-to-Energy project in the Emirate of Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.
  • Representing NEOM Company, Saudi Arabia’s new city gigaproject development company, on a $5bn green energy joint venture with ACWA Power and Air Products.
  • Advising Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar) on the development and financing of a 200 MW solar PV project in Azerbaijan.

Corporate and commercial > Equity capital markets – mid-large cap Tier 3

In 2020, Shearman & Sterling LLP grew its market share in relation to equity offerings in EMEA. The firm acts for issuers and underwriters on the entire range of transactions, including IPOs, secondary offerings, SEC-registered offerings and private placements. Its work spans the technology, energy, healthcare and industrial sectors, among others. Trevor Ingram heads up the department, with Pawel Szaja being another name to note. David Dixter joined Milbank in March 2021.

Practice head(s):

Trevor Ingram

Other key lawyers:

Pawel Szaja; Maegen Morrison

Testimonials

‘The Shearman team offers a truly global perspective with respect to market practice and trends. They are very responsive, knowledgeable and solutions-oriented.’

‘Pawel Szaja is an exceptional transactional lawyer, bringing a breadth of capital markets knowledge and focus on finding effective solutions to challenges that arise on a transaction.’

Key clients

Tristar

ADNOC

City Lodge Hotels Limited

Work highlights

  • Acted as issuer’s counsel in connection with the placement of shares in ADNOC Distribution, a subsidiary of ADNOC listed on the AGX.
  • Acting as US and English counsel to the underwriters in connection with the planned Rule 144A IPO and listing of shares on DFM in the UAE of Tristar.
  • Advised City Lodge Hotels Limited (CLHG) in connection with its rights offering.

Corporate and commercial > Financial services: contentious Tier 3

At Shearman & Sterling LLP, 'disciplined, dedicated and dynamic' contentious financial services lawyers have experience representing financial institutions, corporates and professional services firms in matters including multi-jurisdictional insolvencies, financial fraud and contentious regulatory issues; drawing on the firm's solid transatlantic foundations and a well-respected non-contentious financial services group in London, under the leadership of Barney Reynolds. Thomas Donegan is a name to note for regulatory investigations and enforcement issues. Promoted to partner in 2021, Jonathan Swil heads the litigation practice, and is often called upon for contentious regulatory matters and cases involving financial fraud.

Practice head(s):

Barney Reynolds

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

Shearman & Sterling deliver high quality results regardless of legal complexity, cultural differences, and budgetary and time limitations. They are a disciplined, dedicated, and dynamic team of professionals committed to providing an intelligent solution, in a timely and effective manner. Partners and supporting staff understand that treating all clients with integrity and respect is critical.’

Thomas Donegan has great commercial awareness and understands the impact of issues on both client and Shearman & Sterling. He is strategic in his planning, often combining legal strategy with wider case planning and complementary advice to solve a problem, working with other professionals such as public relations, investigations and insolvency practitioners. His people skills are excellent and he can work alongside an array of people from a variety of backgrounds and knowledge. I trust Thomas to do his utmost for me and as well as being personable, he is persuasive and polite.’

Jonathan Swill is extremely professional, polite, astute and supportive.’

Key clients

Bank of America

Certain bondholders in, and the creditors’ committee of, London Capital & Finance

ICE (Intercontinental Exchange, Inc.)

UniCredit

Credit Suisse

Work highlights

  • Advising certain bondholders and the creditors’ committee of London Capital & Finance plc in relation to their claims for compensation and in the administration of London Capital & Finance plc.
  • Representing ICE Benchmark Administration Limited and other subsidiaries (collectively), as defendants in a consolidated antitrust putative class action in the Southern District of New York.
  • Providing advice to UniCredit in the context of global enforcement actions and settlement of its sanctions violation proceedings in the United States, including global regulatory reporting requirements in connection with the proceedings.

Finance > Acquisition finance Tier 3

Fully integrated with the  London high yield practice, which is headed by Ward McKimm, as well as its international network, Shearman & Sterling LLP's seven-partner London-based leveraged finance practice provides 'commercial and solutions-oriented advice' to a lender-focused client base. Praised for his ability to 'balance impressive intellectual acuity with humility and empathy', Gary Hamp  is one of several recent hires, having joined the firm in September 2020 from Latham & Watkins LLP's Hong Kong office. Hamp adds further English law bank finance expertise to a team that already includes the 'very client-focused' Korey Fevzi  (who also handles a considerable volume of mid-market work for private equity clients) and 'consummate professional' Philip Stopford. The recent addition of Sanjeev Dhuna  from Allen & Overy LLP in July 2021 further enhances the firm's lender side credentials, not only on the bank side but also in the direct lending space, as a result of his credit fund pedigree.

Practice head(s):

Ward McKimm

Other key lawyers:

Gary Hamp; Korey Fevzi; Sanjeev Dhuna; Phillip Stopford; Jackson Lam; Rahul Chatterji; Maria Cornilsen; Shameer Shah

Testimonials

Very commercial and solutions led.’

Korey Fevzi – outstanding partner, very client focused and very detailed orientated ensuring the best interests of its clients.’

Gary Hamp is able to balance impressive intellectual acuity with humility and empathy.’

Key clients

Bank of Ireland, Crédit Agricole, ING Bank N.V., National Westminster Bank, Rabobank, Goldman Sachs and MV Credit

Goldman Sachs, MV Credit and Park Square Capital

Investcorp

AlbaCore Capital Group

Marlin Equity Partners

Work highlights

  • Advising Bank of Ireland, Crédit Agricole, ING Bank N.V., National Westminster Bank, Rabobank, Goldman Sachs and MV Credit, in connection with the first lien financing in support of the acquisition by the Barentz group of the Maroon Group.
  • Advising on the PIK Notes financing on behalf of the Original Note Purchasers, which include funds managed by Goldman Sachs, Park Square Capital and MV Credit in support of the acquisition by the Barentz group of the Maroon Group.
  • Advised AlbaCore Capital Group as note purchaser in connection with the placement of Senior Secured PIK Toggle Notes issued by Centurion Newco S.p.A. The PIK Notes were issued as part of the committed financing for the acquisition of Engineering Ingegneria Informatica S.p.A. by Bain Capital and Neuberger Berman.

Investment fund formation and management > Hedge funds Tier 3

Led by John Adams, Shearman & Sterling LLP's team advises a wide range of institutional fund managers on fund formation and operational issues, and spin-outs and fund restructurings, with broad expertise across the US and European markets. It is also knowledgeable about complex regulatory issues, including Brexit-related changes and AIFMD.

Practice head(s):

John Adams

Testimonials

‘Market knowledge, versatility, responsiveness.’

‘John Adams is one of the best partners I have every worked with: knowledgeable, on top of all details, fully accessible and dependable.’

‘Cross-border team working as one team across the various offices and practices able to provide 24-hour assistance.’

‘Dependable and knowledgeable team.’

Key clients

Attestor Limited

Abu Dhabi Global Market

TT International Family Group

Prosperity Capital Management Limited

Autoriti Monetari Brunei Darussalam

TRG Management L.P.

Maverick Capital Ltd.

Steadfast Financial LP

Albacore Partners

Skybridge Capital II, LLC

OrbiMed Capital

Dynamo Capital

RK Capital Management

Work highlights

  • Advising Attestor Capital on its multibillion flagship special situations/distressed assets fund.
  • Advised Prosperity on its suite of Russia/former Soviet Union-focused hedge funds.
  • Advised RK Capital Management on the wholesale restructuring of the fund terms for RK Mine Finance.

Corporate and commercial > EU and competition Tier 4

Shearman & Sterling LLP specialises in multijurisdictional matters, and the London team frequently work alongside US offices to coordinate merger and FDI filings for multinational companies. Matthew Readings heads up the London practice; his practice spans corporate support, investigations and litigation. James Webber is an expert in state aid and subsidy control regimes, regularly assisting clients from the chemical, automotive, financial services and media sectors.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Readings

Other key lawyers:

James Webber; Özlem Fidanboylu; Mark Steenson; Gabriella Griggs

Testimonials

The practice is highly skilled and adopts a very practical approach to merger control regulatory filings. The team is very responsive and organized. Whilst other firms have similar strengths, the team at Shearman and Sterling have provided invaluable guidance as to how our company can overcome challenges. The team really understands our company and our stakeholders to provide very tailored practical advice.’

Matthew Readings and Gabriella Griggs are stand out individuals. Matthew’s extensive experience shines through with every interaction and there is always a significant value add. Gabriella is handling all the day-to-day aspects of legal support. She is excellent and her involvement often negates the need for partner input. Gabriella represents us vis a vis our shareholders, stakeholders and business partners. We are a very demanding client and neither Matthew nor Gabriella have ever fallen short of our demands (seamlessly managing different time zones and working days).’

Unrivalled knowledge of the Competition & Markets Authority, it’s processes, procedures, timetables and policy focus

Matthew Readings and Mark Steenson have been invaluable in guiding us through a complicated CMA investigation and appeals process

Key clients

Raytheon

ViacomCBS

Intercontinental Exchange

Credit Suisse

Albemarle

Discovery Inc.

SAP

The Dow Chemical Company

Macquarie

Anglo American

Work highlights

  • Advising ViacomCBS on the sale of Simon and Schuster to Bertelsmann for about $2.18bn.
  • Advised Raytheon on the global antitrust and foreign investment control aspects of its $120bn combination with United Technologies in a merger of equals.
  • Representing Credit Suisse in two European Commission cartel investigations.

Corporate and commercial > M&A: upper mid-market and premium deals, £500m+ Tier 4

Shearman & Sterling LLP made a significant play in the City M&A market in 2021, with the hire of Travers' former London M&A head Phil Cheveley . Cheveley joins a team co-led by veteran practitioner Laurence Levy , who advises across a range of public and private company deals for companies from sectors such as media, finance and consumer goods. Other notable partners in the London team include Nick Withers , who advises clients from sectors such as financial services, TMT, and life sciences. Infrastructure partner Tim Sheddick  left for White & Case LLP .

Practice head(s):

Laurence Levy, Phil Cheveley

Other key lawyers:

Nick Withers; Simon Burrows

Testimonials

‘Excellent firm – no weak links on the junior side, quality service delivered with an eye on efficiency and speed not racking up the time.’

‘Simon Burrows and Richard Porter get the deal done quickly and efficiently without the melodrama and theatrics some firms are under the misapprehension clients want.’

Key clients

Macquarie European Infrastructure Fund 4

Sasol New Energy Holdings Proprietary Limited

SS&C Technologies, Inc.

Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited

Tetra Laval International S.A.

DBAY Advisors Limited

Gulf Marine Services plc

General Electric

Anglo American plc

Goldman Sachs

Liberty Global

Microvast, Inc.

Work highlights

  • Advised Fairfax Financial Holdings on the sale of RiverStone to CVC Capital Partners.
  • Advised Tetra Laval group on its acquisition of Avon Rubber p.l.c.’s milkrite | InterPuls business.
  • Advised Microvast Inc. on its business combination with special purpose acquisition vehicle (SPAC) Tuscan Holdings Corp.

Finance > Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans Tier 4

Led by capital markets partner Ward McKimm, Shearman & Sterling LLP's seven-partner London-based finance team provides a 'very commercial and solutions-led' service to a bank-focused client base, including on mandates where an integrated English and New York law bank and bond structure is necessary. While the leveraged finance market accounts for much of this work, the team also picks up its fair share of creditor-side investment grade mandates, as well as from corporate clients of the firm.

Practice head(s):

Ward McKimm

Other key lawyers:

Gary Hamp; Korey Fevzi; Philip Stopford; Jackson Lam; Maria Cornilsen; Shameer Shah

Testimonials

Very commercial and solutions led.’

The team benefits from an unparralleled work ethic.’

‘Korey Fevzi – outstanding partner, very client focused and very detail orientated ensuring the best interests of its clients.’

‘Jackson Lam – very good solicitor , always available, very detailed oriented.’

Philip Stopford is a consummate professional who provides good, clear, reliable, actionable advice. He is a true trusted advisor with a great delivery and a sense of humour that makes him a great communicator.’

Philip Stopford is detail oriented, very commercial, and will always make himself available.’

Key clients

Carlson Travel, Inc

Coca Cola European Partners

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company

Mubadala Capital

Credit Suisse, Bank of America, Deutsche Bank, BNP Paribas, Lloyds Bank and Santander

Natixis

Work highlights

  • Advising Mubadala Capital, the financial investment arm of Mubadala Investment Company, in connection with the establishment of an evergreen origination platform with Barings, one of the world’s leading financial services firms.
  • Advised the mandated lead arrangers in connection with the raising of new financing by INEOS Finance plc and INEOS US Finance LLC comprising a €375m incremental senior secured facility to its existing cross-border multicurrency credit agreement and the issuance of €325m senior secured notes.
  • Advised Natixis in relation to SYNLAB’s bond to TLB exchange offer including advice in relation to the extension/refinancing of SYNLAB’s TLB and Revolving Credit Facility.

Insurance > Insurance: corporate and regulatory Tier 4

Shearman & Sterling LLP provides a wide range of corporate and regulatory services to insurance and reinsurance companies, and other key clients such as Riverstone and Blackstone. Barnabas Reynolds, who leads the firm’s financial services group, has a keen interest in insurance issues and has been notably active in Brexit-related matters. Thomas Donegan is another key individual.

Practice head(s):

Barnabas Reynolds

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

Blackstone Credit (formerly GSO)

Fairfax and IIFL Holdings

Sompo Holdings

ADNOC

ICE Clear Europe

RiverStone Holdings Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Blackstone Credit and TwinFocus on its role as lender on a significant acquisition financing to enable Markerstudy to acquire Co-Op Insurance.
  • Advised Fairfax on its share sale and purchase agreement with Gatland  pursuant to which Fairfax has agreed to sell the entire issued share capital of RiverStone.
  • Advised RiverStone Holdings Limited in connection with the regulatory aspects of its acquisition of the Neon Group from American Financial Group, Inc.

Projects, energy and natural resources > Infrastructure Tier 4

Shearman & Sterling LLP has experience advising across the full asset life cycle from fund formation to greenfield project financing of key infrastructure assets to brownfield infrastructure M&A, financings and disposals. Iain Elder leads the team and represents sponsors and lenders on the development and financing of large energy and infrastructure projects throughout the Middle East and Africa. Former infrastructure partners Katie Hicks and Tim Sheddick moved to White & Case LLP in 2021.

Practice head(s):

Iain Elder

Key clients

Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets

Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan Board (OTPP)

Aberdeen Standard Investments

DIF Capital Partners

LPP Investments Ltd/ GLIL Infrastructure LLP

IFM

JPM IIF

Ancala Partners

Infranode

Dalmore Capital Limited

StepStone Group LP’s

Swiss Life Asset Managers

Hermes Infrastructure

CGN

VTTI B.V.

Beacon Rail Group

Bristol Airport

Westerleigh Crematoria Group

Cory Environmental

Work highlights

  • Acting as Borrowers’ counsel in connection with the ongoing refinancing of VTTI B.V. and the establishment of a multi-creditor common terms platform.
  • Advised in connection with establishing a secured debt platform consisting of €300,000,000 of funding from international banks and institutional investors for the refinancing of the existing debt facilities and ongoing capex of Finnish district gas heating business, Loimua Oy.
  • Advised Macquarie European Infrastructure Fund 4 on entry into a share purchase agreement to sell its 69.4% shareholding in Sole Ventures, the holding company for Società Gasdotti Italia, to a wholly owned subsidiary of Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan Board.

Projects, energy and natural resources > Mining and minerals Tier 4

Shearman & Sterling LLP has a focus on mining project financings and developments across emerging markets, particularly in Latin America. Marwa Elborai is active in capital markets matters and counts ArcelorMittal as a key client, while Lachlan Poustie, who is based between London and Paris, is recommended for project finance. The team leverages its strengths across corporate and dispute resolution work to provide a full service to clients.

Practice head(s):

Marwa Elborai

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘Deep knowledge and experience. User friendly and very client focused.’

‘In-depth experience in mining and metals and the ability to advise across practice groups and geographies.’

‘They are a thoughtful, hardworking team – they fight alongside us but are practical and solution-minded.’

‘Marwa Elborai is experienced, practical and pleasant to work with.’

Key clients

Anglo American

ArcelorMittal

Nevada Copper Corp.

Inalum

Pala Investments

IFC

Albermarle

Emirates Global Alumina

ING

Orion

Work highlights

  • Advised Anglo American on the senior notes offerings issued by Anglo American Capital plc and guaranteed by Anglo American plc: $750m 5.375% senior notes due 2025 and $750m 5.625% senior notes due 2030.
  • Represented the dealer managers in connection with ArcelorMittal’s notes offer.
  • Advised Guinea Alumina Corporation (and its parent company, Emirates Global Aluminium) in connection with the $1.6 billion development and financing of a bauxite mine and related rail and port infrastructure in the Republic of Guinea.

Corporate and commercial > Private equity: transactions – high-value deals (£250m+) Tier 6

Shearman & Sterling LLP leverages its global network of offices to advise private equity clients on cross-border investments, acquisitions, and exits. The practice also draws on the London office's broader expertise in finance, tax, and capital markets to help clients. Simon Burrows and Paul Strecker lead the team. Burrows has close relationships with a number of PE houses, while Strecker is qualified to practice in England and Wales, New York, California, and Hong Kong, offering international experience to clients.

Practice head(s):

Simon Burrows; Paul Strecker

Testimonials

‘Excellent expertise in Private Equity and SPAC transactions.’

‘The partner we worked with was clear, concise, had excellent market and product knowledge, and was capable of identifying quickly red flags in the transaction. Also great at coordinating when we needed a local counsel we had not anticipated. ‘

‘Paul Strecker: Beyond the fact that he is a top notch lawyer, I really like the way he manages his clients and communicates. His negotiations skills are terrific (and very efficient) while always staying courteous and diplomatic. This is something that fits with the value of my organization and our corporate culture.’

Key clients

AlbaCore Capital LLP

CVC Capital Partners

Metric Capital Partners

King Street Capital

Work highlights

  • Advised Yamma Investments, an consortium of investors led by Metric Capital, on its $200 million investment in Sanovel.
  • Advised CVC Capital Partners on its investment in Skroutz AE.
  • Acted for King Street Capital Management in connection with its acquisition of FC Girondins de Bordeaux.

Dispute resolution > International arbitration Tier 6

Shearman & Sterling LLP is well known for its commercial and investment treaty arbitration expertise. Garreth Wong, the 'key arbitration partner in Shearman London', recently joined from Bird & Bird LLP; counsel Margaret Clare Ryan is an investment arbitration specialist; and UAE-based Alex Bevan is global international arbitration practice head. In 2021, Ximena Herrera-Bernal left to co-found Gaillard Banifatemi Shelbaya Disputes, and was joined by Tsegaye Laurendeau, while Alexander Uff departed for Quadrant Chambers.

Practice head(s):

Alex Bevan

Testimonials

Shearman London has a world class team of international arbitration talent.

Very strong in international dispute resolution.

The presentation was very efficient and well focused and successful. They have the ability to find quick and clever ways to overcome difficulties – they don’t waste time.

A highly specialised team spearheaded by young and enthusiastic partner Garreth Wong, a highly industrious and cerebral partner, who is flexible in his approach to working with/using counsel.

Garreth Wong was responsible for the oral and written advocacy in a high-value international dispute, and he was well prepared, clear and responsive to the tribunal’s questions. I thought that overall he did an excellent job in a pressurised situation.

Garreth Wong is the key arbitration partner in Shearman London. He is excellent with clients, fantastic on the law and a very focused and accomplished oral advocate to boot. He has the makings of an international arbitration grandee.

Garreth Wong began his legal career as a barrister at a top London barristers’ chambers, and it really shows in the quality of his advocacy and the rigour of his analysis.

Counsel Margaret Clare Ryan is one to watch for the future. She has excellent knowledge of public international law and is a pleasure to work with.

Key clients

KLS Energy Lanka Sdn Bhd

KLS Energy Lanka (Private)

Work highlights

  • Representing KLS Energy Lanka Sdn Bhd and KLS Energy Lanka (Private) in an ICSID arbitration against the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, which relates to a renewable energy generation enterprise.

Finance > Corporate restructuring & insolvency Tier 6

Under the leadership of the 'smart and effective' Alex Wood , Shearman & Sterling LLP has 'been fully rejuvenated' following some recent departures, according to one client.  Wood has exploited opportunities from the firm's broader capital markets/bond prowess and international network, as well as strenthening the team through some strong strategic hires. The recent arrivals of Helena Potts and Sam Brodie  from Latham & Watkins and Akin Gump LLP demonstrate this targeted recruitment approach, and in light of their strong credentials, particularly with fund clients, has the potential to bear significant dividends for the practice moving forward.

Practice head(s):

Alex Wood

Other key lawyers:

Helena Potts; Sam Brodie; Kevin Heverin; Tom McKay; Kate O’Donoghue; Jamie Turley

Testimonials

‘The team has been fully rejuvenated with the hiring of new exceptional talents under the leadership of Alex Wood. As a new team, they are hungry and striving to set up a well regarded team. They key strengths are anchored their capital markets/ bonds DNA that give them access to key corporates, which is supplemented by a strong network of regional offices giving them enhanced offering.’

Alex Wood has a fantastic manner with clients, and is able to distil complex concepts/case law into digestible ideas.’

Alex Wood is a very smart and effective lawyer.He is technically gifted and able to give good advice in complex scenarios on short notice.’

Kevin Heverin is an outstanding counsel; he has very high commercial acumen and is highly diligent.’

Key clients

Citibank

Creditors’ Committee of London Capital & Finance PLC (“LC&F”)

Work highlights

  • Representing Citibank in its capacity as administrative agent and lender under a revolving credit agreement in connection with the Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases of Valaris Plc and certain of its subsidiaries.
  • In a pro bono capacity, the firm is advising the creditors’ committee of London Capital & Finance Plc (LC&F), on amongst other things: the administration of LC&F, strategic decision making and the role and duties of the creditors’ committee.

Dispute resolution > Banking litigation: investment and retail

Tunisia > Foreign firms Tier 3

Shearman & Sterling LLP has a large footprint in North and Sub-Sahara Africa, where it is consistently engaged by international clients to advise on inbound investment transactions. It also advises local and international governments, development banks and multilaterals on matters throughout the region. Paris-based Lachlan Poustie is a key contact and recently advised the lenders on the €435m restructuring of TAV Airports group’s two concessions in Tunisia. London-based senior associate Jonathan Toffolo is also noted.

Practice head(s):

Lachlan Poustie; Samuel Ogunlaja; Aliahmed Hassanali

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘Lachlan Poustie and Jonathan Toffolo are extremely responsive and able to meet very tight timelines.’

Key clients

International Finance Corporate (IFC)

African Development Bank,

Deutsche Bank,

European Investment Bank

OPEC Fund for International Development

Société de Promotion et de Participation pour la Coopération Economique (Proparco)

Standard Bank

Work highlights

  • Advised African Development Bank, Deutsche Bank, EIB, IFC, OPEC Fund for International Development, Proparco and Standard Bank on the restructuring of TAV Airports group’s two concessions in Tunisia (at Monastir and Enfidha).

India > Foreign firms

Shearman & Sterling LLP has built a substantial global team across Asia and Europe in conjunction with its US base, which is dedicated to India-based or India-related transactions. It provides broad expertise in M&A, capital markets, project finance, international arbitration, real estate and fund formations. It has a specialist private equity team based in Singapore for India work and includes infrastructure funds, sovereign wealth and and pension funds among its clients. Andrew Schleider heads the capital markets group in Singapore, and represents both underwriters and issuers in a wide range of corporate finance transactions including some 20 years’ experience of US raisings, high yield and investment grade debt securities, and convertible bonds. Kyungwon (Won) Lee represents both issuers and underwriters on corporate transactions and his experience includes public and private, international and US offerings of common and preferred stock, high yield and investment grade securities. Partner Sanjeev Dhuna joined from Allen & Overy in July 2021; he has extensive experience advising both lenders and borrowers on complex cross-border banking and finance transactions, and is especially known for advising on leveraged finance. Sidharth Bhasin and James Cayton-Payne left in August 2021 to join Latham & Watkins LLP.

Practice head(s):

Sidharth Bhasin

Key clients

Citigroup Global Markets India Private Limited

DSP Merrill Lynch Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised DSP Merrill Lynch in relation to Motherson Sumi Systems Limited’s Group Restructuring and demerger of its Domestic Wiring Harness Business.
  • Represented Citigroup Global Markets India Private Limited, the financial advisor to Retail Ventures Limited, a subsidiary of Reliance Industries Limited in its proposed acquisition of the retail and wholesale business and the logistics and warehousing business of the Future Group for a consideration of INR 24,713 crore ($3.3 billion), pursuant to a composite scheme of arrangement.
  • Advised Greenko Dutch B.V. and Greenko Energy Holdings Limited in connection with the offering of US$940m aggregate principal amount of 3.85% Senior Notes due 2026 guaranteed by Greenko Energy Holdings on a senior basis.

China > Corporate and M&A: foreign firms

Leveraging a presence in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing, in addition to a far-reaching global network, Shearman & Sterling LLP caters a roster of PRC state-owned enterprises, financial institutions and prominent corporates. Li Chen and Sean Wang both divide their time between the Hong Kong and Beijing offices; the former supports local clients on their investments throughout the globe and counts the energy, healthcare, financial institutions, investment fund and infrastructure sectors are her most active frontiers. As for Wang, he is a member of the project development and finance practice and predominantly focuses on state-owned enterprise and financial institution representation.

Practice head(s):

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

China National Petroleum Company International/PetroChina

China Telecom

Investcorp

Leyou Technologies Holdings Limited

Russia-China Investment Fund

SAP

Work highlights

  • Advised Leyou Technologies Holdings on its take private by Image Frame Investment (HK) by way of a scheme of arrangement under Section 86 of the Companies Law of the Cayman Islands.
  • Advised CNODC on its acquisition from ExxonMobil of a participating interest in the West Qurna (Phase 1) Oil Field in Iraq.
  • Advised Investcorp on its acquisition of a minority stake in WeDoctor from Goldman Sachs.

Qatar > Commercial, corporate and M&A

The corporate team at Shearman & Sterling LLP advises on cross-border corporate transactions across the Middle East. Also notable is that it has been advising the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) on strategic outbound investments, divestments, governance and structural matters for over 12 years. The practice is overseen by George Casey in New York and Laurence Levy in London.

Practice head(s):

George Casey; Laurence Levy

Key clients

Qatar Investment Authority

Latin America: International firms > Corporate and M&A

Shearman & Sterling LLP‘s M&A work has been somewhat overshadowed by the Latin America team’s prominence in capital markets and project finance transactions. Despite that, the firm’s historical commitment to the region continues to land it some important engagements, such as continuing to advise Banco Bradesco, the Brazilian bank, on its $500m acquisition of BAC Florida Bank. It also continued to represent Abertis Infraestructuras and Singapore’s GIC in their acquisition of a 70% stake in Red de Carreteras de Occidente (RCO) from Goldman Sachs Infrastructure Partners. George Karafotias and Clare O’Brien are amongst a number of partners with Latin America M&A experience. Houston partner Manuel Orillac is also recognised for Latin America corporate and capital markets transactions. Houston counsel Gabriel Salinas is noted for oil and gas investments by private equity funds, particularly in Mexico. Alexandro Padrés leads the Latin America group. All named individuals are based in New York unless stated otherwise. Since publication, Padrés has departed the firm – effective as of May 2022.

United Arab Emirates > Banking and finance: Corporate finance (including Islamic lending)

Shearman & Sterling LLP has a full-service finance practice with a global presence, covering a range of areas including project finance, acquisition finance, ECA financings, restructuring and Shariah compliant financing. Philip Stopford and Abu Dhabi-based Laleh Shahabi co-head the UAE banking and finance practice. Shahabi was promoted to partner in July 2021 and has expertise in project finance and development transactions.

Practice head(s):

Philip Stopford; Laleh Shahabi

Other key lawyers:

Claire Hunter

Key clients

Mubadala Capital

Shearman & Sterling works with companies and financial institutions on some of their most crucial transactions and cases, both in the U.K. and internationally. We are a global elite law firm, and the London office utilizes the experience and expertise from across our integrated, international platform.

At Shearman & Sterling, we understand the power of diverse perspectives and are active in our efforts to recruit, retain and promote top attorneys and professionals from the full spectrum of cultures, ethnicities, orientations and beliefs.

We leverage the use of smart technology in all our client work. Our innovative data management system, Shearman Analytics, gives us a leading edge in staffing matters leanly and effectively, driving value for our clients. We also use the data to provide powerful predictive insights for our clients.

In all matters, we at Shearman & Sterling are dedicated to serving our clients at the highest level. We consider ourselves true business partners to our clients and pride ourselves on forming long-standing working relationships, navigating shifting regulations and market developments to help you reach your business goals.

For further information, please visit www.shearman.com.

DepartmentNameEmailTelephone
Senior Partner: David Beveridge
Co-Global Managing Partners: George Casey and Adam Hakki
Head of London Office: Matthew Readings
PhotoNamePositionProfile
John Adams  photo John Adams John Adams is a partner in the Investment Funds practice. He focuses…
Mr Alex Bevan photo Mr Alex BevanAlex Bevan is Shearman & Sterling’s Global International Arbitration Practice Group Leader…
Mr Simon Burrows  photo Mr Simon Burrows Partner
Patrick Clancy  photo Patrick Clancy Patrick Clancy is a partner in the Derivatives & Structured Products practice.…
Thomas Donegan  photo Thomas Donegan Thomas Donegan is a partner in the Financial Institutions Advisory & Financial…
Mr James Duncan  photo Mr James Duncan Partner
Marwa Elborai  photo Marwa Elborai Partner
Korey Fevzi  photo Korey Fevzi Partner
Mr Gary Hamp  photo Mr Gary Hamp Partner
Gordon Houseman  photo Gordon Houseman Associate
Mr John Inglis  photo Mr John Inglis Of Counsel
Trevor Ingram  photo Trevor Ingram Partner
Jackson Lam  photo Jackson Lam Counsel
Simon Letherman  photo Simon Letherman Partner and head of Shearman & Sterling’s London Tax group. Simon specialises in UK and…
Ward McKimm  photo Ward McKimm European Regional Managing Partner, Global Head of Leveraged Finance and the EMEA…
Mr Richard Porter photo Mr Richard PorterPartner
Matthew Readings  photo Matthew Readings Global Antitrust Practice Group Leader and Head of the London and Brussels…
Barney Reynolds  photo Barney Reynolds Barnabas (Barney) Reynolds is Global Head of the Financial Services Industry Group…
Margaret Clare Ryan photo Margaret Clare RyanCounsel
Mr Matthew Skinner photo Mr Matthew SkinnerPartner
Philip Stopford  photo Philip Stopford Partner
Mr Pawel Szaja  photo Mr Pawel Szaja Partner
Ms Sanja Udovicic  photo Ms Sanja Udovicic Partner
James Webber  photo James Webber Partner in the Antitrust practice in Brussels and London. He focuses on EU…
Sam Whitaker  photo Sam Whitaker Counsel in Shearman & Sterling’s executive compensation and employee benefits group, provides…
Nick Withers photo Nick Withers
Mr Garreth Wong  photo Mr Garreth Wong Partner
Alex Wood photo Alex WoodPartner in our Financial Restructuring & Insolvency practice.
Number of UK partners : 32
Number of other UK fee-earners : 129