Firm Profile > Dentons > Edinburgh, Scotland

Dentons
QUARTERMILE ONE
15 LAURISTON PLACE
EDINBURGH
EH3 9EP
Scotland

Corporate tax Tier 1

As part of the wider firm's UK practice, Dentons' Scottish tax team handles high-profile tax matters in Scotland and internationally. It is well placed to handle cross-border advisory and transactional work, and advises on tax issues concerning employees working remotely overseas. Glasgow’s Gwen Souter is a chartered accountant, who heads the team alongside the London-based Alex Thomas. Lorna McCaa is a member of the Tax Committee of the Law Society of Scotland and the Property Tax Committee of the Scottish Property Federation, and has considerable experience in handling the tax aspects of real estate and corporate transactions. Roddy Harrison left for Wright, Johnston & Mackenzie LLP in January 2021.

Practice head(s):

Gwen Souter; Alex Thomas

Other key lawyers:

Lorna McCaa; Alastair MacLeod

Testimonials

‘The team is made up of high quality people, with a good knowledge of business’.

‘Although it is a large firm, the relationship felt personal’.

‘Very approachable, responsive, friendly and confidence-inspiring’.

‘Lorna McCaa handled complicated tax matters but was patient and helpful in managing the situation with company directors in offering solutions, explanations and resolutions of issues arising’.

Key clients

M&G Real Estate (various funds)

The PRS REIT plc

The Edrington Group Limited

Hansa Trust plc

Hurricane Energy plc

Scottish Equity Partners LLP

The Valence Group

J Sainsbury plc

John Lewis Partnership

Charles Ritchie’s Testamentary Trust

EU and competition Tier 1

Dentons is well regarded in the Scottish market for its broad competition expertise, with key areas of focus including merger control, compliance, competition litigation and dawn raid issues. The team is jointly led by London-based Adrian Magnus and Glasgow’s Michael Dean, who has considerable experience in the full range of EU and UK competition law proceedings. Key practitioner Catriona Munro has notable expertise in cartels and contentious competition law. Senior associate Melanie Martin is recommended for non-contentious competition issues, state aid and Brexit-related matters.

Practice head(s):

Michael Dean; Adrian Magnus

Other key lawyers:

Catriona Munro; David McGowan; Carolyn Burns; Melanie Martin

Testimonials

‘A highly skilled, professional and diverse team who are responsive and diligent on all matters. The wide range of expertise – and access to experts on wider areas of law – gives clients confidence that the team can collaborate to deliver projects of any scale, and that they can meet ambitious deadlines on complex problems. The stand-out feature of the team is their ability to understand the client, their operating environment, and risk appetite’.

‘The team really understand our business and their advice is always on point. They do not get bogged down in the detail but cut through it to give the advice we need. They are flexible and able to discuss concepts at a range of levels’.

‘Michael Dean and David McGowan always give great and easily digestible advice.’

‘Melanie Martin is bright and very easy to deal with.’

‘Catriona Munro gives flexible and helpful strategic guidance in disputes contexts.’

‘Approachable individuals who have good awareness of wider commercial considerations beyond just legal points. Each is an expert in their field, and give confidence that they are applying the most up-to-date thinking to matters.’

‘David McGowan is a notable expert who gives complete confidence in the breadth and thoroughness of his advice.’

‘This is a fast reacting and knowledgeable team who can convey this complex area of law in a way which resonates with the business we operate in.’

Key clients

Standard Life Aberdeen PLC

Daimler AG

Stagecoach Group PLC

Network Rail

The Edrington Group Limited

Aggreko PLC

UK Government (Department for International Development, Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Department for Education)

Alexander Dennis Limited

Banking and finance Tier 2

Leveraging its international network, Dentons is well equipped to handle large international mandates for both borrower and lender clients. The practice has a broad spectrum of expertise, which includes handling acquisition finance issues, general lending work, renewables and project financings, real estate finance work, securitisations and structured finance matters. It has recently been advising a number of clients on the UK government’s Covid-19 lending schemes. Edinburgh-based Susan Kelly heads up the Scottish banking team and counts a number of large corporations on her client roster.

Practice head(s):

Susan Kelly

Other key lawyers:

James Wilson; Stuart Fitzsimmons

Testimonials

‘The team there are very efficient and we always receive an excellent service from them’.

‘They have shown themselves to be highly knowledgeable, reliable and willing to go the extra mile if required, as it sometimes is’.

‘I deal with Stuart Fitzsimmons, who has been extremely helpful, professional and has put himself out to get work done at times’.

‘Dentons have a national high quality range of legal services and are able to advise on asset-based lending advisory work in England as well as Scotland’.

‘They are proactive, operate at pace and have been fundamental in deal completions where I have engaged them.’

‘Stuart Fitzsimmons is a superb lawyer, easy to work with, proactive in expanding our relationship and an essential part of our deal teams when engaged’.

‘They have been incredibly effective in negotiations and on problem solving’.

‘They are very engaging, very responsive to queries and manage expectations around timescales, whilst ensuring they have the resources in place to deliver’.

Key clients

Aberdeen Standard Asia Focus plc

Murray Income Trust plc

KIC Inventories Limited

The Scottish Salmon Company Limited

Koomin Bank Co. Ltd, London Bank

Lochside Crescent Edinburgh Unit Trust

PRS REIT plc

Devro

Sigma Capital Group

First Milk

Commercial property: Edinburgh and Glasgow Tier 2

Brian Hutcheson joined Dentons from Morton Fraser in May 2020 and now heads the team following the retirement of Gordon Aitken. With a huge international network, the firm is well placed to handle high-value, multi-jurisdictional mandates. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the firm created interactive toolkits that assist clients with lease, agreement and litigation, possession and enforcement issues. Hutcheson is recommended for estates management and development work.

Practice head(s):

Brian Hutcheson

Other key lawyers:

Paul Haniford

Testimonials

‘Every member of the team, no matter how junior, is more than capable of the task they are required to do’.

‘All individuals are working within their own specialised area, but they always provide a joined-up approach’.

‘Each of the people we are involved with give us the highest attention at all times, no matter how small the question’.

Key clients

M & G Real Estate

Aviva Investors

Hammerson Plc

Praxis Asset Management

Aberdeen Standard

Peel Retail Developments Limited

Universities Superannuation Scheme Limited

The Student Hotel

Inmark Asset Management Co. Limited

Sigma Capital

Corporate and commercial: Edinburgh and Glasgow Tier 2

Dentons' Scotland corporate offering, which dates back to its 2017 takeover of Maclay Murray & Spens, handles high-value domestic and international deals for leading businesses, fund managers, investors and lenders. Key areas of focus for the firm include public and private M&A, private equity and venture capital, corporate restructurings and equity capital markets work. The team is headed by Brian Moore and Iain Sutherland, both of whom have considerable transactional experience. Derek McCombe handles corporate finance transactions, and equity and debt fundraisings. Senior associate Owen McLennan is recommended for work in the financial services industry. Former Maclays chairman Michael Livingston and fellow partner Gordon Hobkirk have both recently retired.

Practice head(s):

Brian Moore; Iain Sutherland

Other key lawyers:

Derek McCombe; David McGrory; Claire Armstrong; Owen McLennan; Donald Smith; Kimberly Goh

Testimonials

‘A very diverse skillset amongst the partners, with good coverage across most sectors’.

‘The firm has a good mix of older more experienced partners, as well as promoting young talent development, which is very good’.

‘Very experienced and proven professionals in their own field’.

‘They have always been highly competitive in nature and come across as a team that want to be the best’.

‘As a small international business we get the support of a UK-based firm. but with global reach’.

‘They combine a unique blend of being able to cover both mainstream corporate work and also restructuring work’.

‘Derek McCombe has developed a real niche in the retail sector and is highly regarded and trusted by his colleagues’.

‘Brian Moore is always very responsive and was a great support throughout our transaction’.

Key clients

The Law Debenture Corporation plc

Scottish National Investment Bank plc

Murray Income Trust PLC

QUIZ plc

Scottish Equity Partners

The Edrington Group Limited

Stagecoach Group plc

Edinburgh Woollen Mill Group

Tomlinson Group Argenta Limited

Clyde Blowers Capital

Insolvency and corporate recovery Tier 2

Dentons has a focus on insolvency transaction work and handles matters that straddle English and Scots law, with support from its network of offices. It acts for insolvency practitioners and directors and purchasers of distressed companies in relation to restructuring and insolvency matters. Douglas Blyth and Derek McCombe head up the team; Blyth is recommended for contentious insolvency matters and disputes; and McCombe handles corporate restructurings and insolvencies.

Practice head(s):

Douglas Blyth; Derek McCombe

Other key lawyers:

Craig Kennedy

Key clients

The Edinburgh Woollen Mill

Dunfermline Building Society

KPMG LLP

FRP Advisory LLP

CVR Global LLP

RSM

HM Government

Timex Fashions Limited

Quiz plc

Grant Thornton

Purepay Retail Limited

Intellectual property Tier 2

Particularly active in non-contentious IP issues, Dentons regularly advises clients on the IP aspects of M&A deals, guides clients through IP audits, assists with IP licensing and commercialisation issues, and aids with IP protection as well as broader IP strategies. Working in close collaboration with the firm’s global offices, the local group is headed up by the 'extremely intelligent, very commercialAlison Bryce, an accredited IP law specialist. Ross Nicol is mainly instructed on IP-related matters by household clients in the life sciences, financial services, food and drink, and technology sectors.

Practice head(s):

Alison Bryce

Other key lawyers:

Ross Nicol; Julie Brown

Testimonials

‘Ross Nicol is an excellent practitioner, who is very capable of providing real world advice.’

‘Ross Nicol provides pragmatic advice which is always well tailored in light of commercial circumstances. He understands the challenges faced by an in house lawyer.’

‘In my view their knowledge and expertise of this subject area is unrivalled in Scotland. Their team has grown significantly in recent years as they continue to win large instructions.’

‘Alison Bryce is an excellent partner – extremely intelligent, very commercial, pragmatic, clear in her advice, and with an understanding of her subject area which is second to none.’

‘Ross Nicol really knows his stuff and is extremely hard-working and dedicated.’

‘Julie Brown is an excellent senior associate – very thorough and responsive.’

Key clients

The Edrington Group Limited (owner of Famous Grouse and The Macallan, Highland Park, Brugal Rum)

The John Lewis Partnership (including Waitrose Limited)

The Restaurant Group plc (concessions businesses include Wagamama, Frankie & Bennie’s, Garfunkels and Chiquitos)

Finsbury Foods Limited (which produce foodstuffs under licence for Thornton’s, Weight Watchers and Disney)

Edinburgh Woollen Mill Limited (highly recognisable brands include Jaeger and Austin Reed)

Nairn’s Oatcakes Limited

STV Group plc

Arnold Clark

Aggreko plc

Marks and Spencer plc

Investment funds Tier 2

Dentons stands out for its combination of listed fund and regulatory experience, and its private funds practice. Regularly acting on a cross-office basis with the London team, the firm handles a high number of cross-border mandates. It routinely acts for service providers to funds, including investment managers, investment advisers, depositaries, custodians and administrators. Claire Armstrong heads up the group and is recommended for fund establishment, structuring and restructuring matters, partnership law issues and asset management regulatory advice. Tim Edward left for MBM Commercial at the start of 2021.

Practice head(s):

Claire Armstrong

Other key lawyers:

Owen McLennan; Stuart Fitzsimmons

Testimonials

‘Accessible, pragmatic and experienced – always with an eye on good commercial outcomes.’

‘Claire Armstrong is accessible, pragmatic and thoughtful; and very diligent

‘Owen McLennan is very user-friendly and reliable’.

‘The main standout was the quality and timeliness of advice given, not only on the legal documents, but also the tactical advice to the board as it navigated the process’.

‘Their availability at short notice and fast turnaround of some complex documentation was much appreciated’.

Key clients

Murray Income Trust PLC

Sigma Capital

Target Global

Gatehouse Bank

IT and telecoms Tier 2

As part of the firm’s vast international network, the Scottish practice at Dentons, which is overseen by Alison Bryce, advises predominantly large multinational corporations on the full gamut of information technology agreements and projects. Key pillars of the group include IT software, hardware and systems procurement mandates, IT outsourcings, technology licensing issues, e-commerce matters and data protection work. Other practitioners to note are IP expert Ross Nicol and senior associate Julie Brown, who regularly handles technology-based contracts, including software licences and service level agreements.

Practice head(s):

Alison Bryce

Other key lawyers:

Ross Nicol; Julie Brown

Testimonials

‘The team have taken the time to get to know and understand our business and our team along with aligning themselves with our requirements and objectives. Despite being a third party provider, they now feel an extension of our internal team.’

‘Alison Bryce has been paramount to driving this approach and engaging with our company in such a manner that they feel part of our team. Alison’s counsel is always valued and we are only too pleased to continue working with Alison and the wider team.’

‘They are always extremely professional, proactive and responsive with evident domain expertise and good broader industry knowledge and very pleasant indeed to work with.’

‘We work mainly with both Alison Bryce (Partner) and Julie Brown (Senior Associate) and find them both to be excellent at all times, providing pragmatic and considered advice and drafting on a prompt and reliable timeline.’

Key clients

Sainsbury’s Supermarkets

Artos Systems Limited

Marks and Spencer PLC

MUFG Securities EMEA plc

STV Group plc

Ascensos Limited

Aggreko plc

Bank of Tokyo

The John Lewis Partnership (including Waitrose Limited)

The Marsden Group Inc.

Projects Tier 2

Dentons, which is active in the public and private sectors, counts lenders and investors as key clients. The practice handles a mix of both domestic and international mandates, and is particularly experienced in operational change and asset management matters. Team head Euan Wilson (who is dual-qualified to practise in Scotland and England and Wales) is recommended for large infrastructure and project finance transactions, with a focus on the secondary market. Andrew Orr is recommended for PFI and PPP projects.

Practice head(s):

Euan Wilson

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Orr; Stewart MacIver

Testimonials

‘The team offers honest, commercial advice.’

‘They are approachable and easy to work with.’

Key clients

3i

Dalmore Capital

Sir Robert McAlpine

Aviva Public Private Finance

Network Rail

Infrastructure Managers Limited

Robertson Capital Projects

Morgan Sindall Investments

Semperian

Blue Transmission

Envac UK

ISS Mediclean

Transport for London

Choice Housing

Oaklee Housing

Department for Education

Bouygues / Axione

World Bank

Property litigation Tier 2

Dentons has a strong profile for landlord and tenant disputes, covering the full range from ratings and lease disputes to break options and dilapidation claims, while also handling contentious matters arising from commercial and residential developments. This offering attracts a wide range of institutional landlords, corporate tenants and housebuilders and has led to a number of prominent retailers instructing the team to handle all property disputes across its portfolio in Scotland. With accredited mediator Gareth Hale heading the practice, its services also include alternative dispute resolution.

Practice head(s):

Gareth Hale

Testimonials

‘The team has a natural ability to advise in writing or discussion, on what can be a complex legal matter, in such a way that the point at issue is readily understood. Such understanding and expertise gives confidence to the client in forming the basis of the next step in the process to achieve a successful outcome.’

‘I find Denton’s property litigation team easy to deal with, fast to respond and explain the situation to me as a lay person very well.’

‘They explain the situation clearly in layman’s terms – this ensures I understand the possible outcomes and costs involved.’

Key clients

Topland plc

M&G Real Estate

Sainsbury’s Supermarkets Limited

Universities Superannuation Scheme

Network Rail Infrastructure Limited

The John Lewis Partnership

M&S plc

Wildstone Capital

The Department of Work and Pensions

Taylor Wimpey plc

Transport Tier 2

Acting as exclusive legal services provider to Network Rail, Dentons has rail sector work at its core and handles the full spectrum of business-relevant contentious and non-contentious matters, including real estate, construction, health and safety, commercial contracts and procurement. The group also assists with transactions, disputes and various commercial matters in the ports, road and bus sectors. The team is jointly led by construction procurement specialist Mark Macaulay and Euan Wilson, who has a specialism in infrastructure and project finance transactions.

Practice head(s):

Mark Macaulay; Euan Wilson

Other key lawyers:

Barry Edgar; Malcolm Gunnyeon; Kirsti Olson; Michael Dean

Key clients

Network Rail

Strathclyde Partnership for Transport

Transport for London

Stagecoach

Royal Mail

Port of Cairnryan

Semperian PPP Investment Partners No. 2 Limited

Acciona

Jones Brothers

Glasgow Prestwick Airport Limited

Scottish Citylink Coaches Limited

Commercial litigation Tier 3

Dentons handles various commercial disputes arising from contractual arrangements and has recently been particularly active in the public, energy, transport, food and drink and financial services sectors. Handling insolvency-related disputes, often with cross-border elements, is an area of particular expertise for team head and solicitor advocate Douglas Blyth, who is also experienced in shareholder and boardroom disputes. Aberdeen-based Malcolm Gunnyeon is a key contact for oil and gas alongside transport sector clients.

Practice head(s):

Douglas Blyth

Other key lawyers:

Malcolm Gunnyeon; Gareth Hale; Craig Kennedy

Testimonials

‘We have had great service from Malcolm Gunnyeon and his team in Aberdeen. They are proactive, professional and thorough which may seem as a basic requirement but is so often missing. We like people who pay attention to and don’t forget the fundamentals.

‘Malcolm Gunnyeon is very friendly with an ability to connect at a personal level with his clients from the very first meeting. He exudes professional capability and we are most impressed with his ability to grasp the core issues at hand very quickly.

‘Douglas Blyth is a smart and legally and commercially astute litigator with strong expertise in insolvency.’

‘Dentons’ portal was very useful for uploading and communicating documents quickly. Video conferencing was well resourced and trouble free. Flexibility on billing was helpful. However, Denton’s main stand-out strength is the quality of its people.’

‘Douglas Blyth is highly experienced in assessing the relative strengths and weaknesses in our case/defender’s case and developing an appropriate negotiating strategy.’

‘Douglas Blyth was a very solid man to guide us.’

‘The dispute resolution team at Dentons provides first-class technical advice and support in difficult times. Their advice is thorough but practical and they seek sensible solutions. They are available 24/7 and go above and beyond. ’

‘Douglas Blyth combines an excellent technical knowledge with a supportive and understanding style. He seeks sensible solutions and achieves results.

Key clients

Highland and Islands Enterprise

Stagecoach South Western Trains Limited

Standard Life Aberdeen Plc

Network Rail Infrastructure Limited

Baxters Food Group Limited

The UK Government

KPMG LLP

GKFF – EnNovo LLC

HC-One Limited

The Royal Bank of Scotland

Construction Tier 3

Dentons has carved out a strong practice handling developer-led work but also acts for a number of contractors. The team headed by Glasgow-based construction procurement specialist Mark Macaulay handles both contentious and non-contentious matters - with Edinburgh-based construction dispute resolution expert Kirsti Olson being the main contact for the former - and has particular expertise in the transport sector. Other recent work arose from mixed-use, leisure, residential and healthcare projects. In March 2021, transactional construction and engineering specialist Craig Bradshaw joined as counsel from MacRoberts LLP.

Practice head(s):

Mark Macaulay

Other key lawyers:

Kirsti Olson; Craig Bradshaw

Key clients

Honeywell S.L.

P & O Ferries

Galliford Try Construction (UK) Limited

Halcrow Group Limited

Taylor Wimpey UK Limited

Helical plc

M&G plc

Clyde Gateway URC

Network Rail Infrastructure Limited

Wilson Bowden plc

Employment Tier 3

Dentons acts across various sectors such as retail, transport, energy, entertainment, food and drink and has a growing financial services client base thanks to Sarah Jackman‘s expertise in this space. The practice is well placed to guide clients through a wide range of employment law issues such as senior exits – an area the team has recently been particularly active in – transactional matters and redundancy programmes (including those related to Covid-19), while its recent contentious work includes internal investigations into various sensitive matters alongside disability discrimination, harassment and holiday pay claims. While team head Alison Weatherhead predominately acts in the non-contentious space, she also has experience in employment tribunal work. Counsel Elouisa Crichton joined from Shepherd and Wedderburn in 2021.

Practice head(s):

Alison Weatherhead

Other key lawyers:

Sarah Jackman; Mark Hamilton; Elouisa Crichton

Testimonials

‘Elouisa Crichton’s legal understanding and knowledge gives us a much needed safety net, nothing is ever to much or little to help with, can-do attitude at all times.’

Key clients

Amazon UK Services Limited

SSE plc

John Lewis Plc

Aggreko Plc

Stitch Fix UK Limited

The Edrington Group

Network Rail Infrastructure Limited

Scottish Equity Partners

Ceridian Europe Limited

Virgin Atlantic Airways Limited

Energy (excluding oil and gas) Tier 3

With support from its global network of offices, Dentons is well-placed to handles domestic and international mandates. It is experienced in traditional renewable energy projects and has recently been handling a number of matters in the energy transition sector, which has seen a boost due to government green recovery initiatives. David Cruickshank, who is the head of the energy, transport and infrastructure team, is recommended for hybrid technologies, large-scale renewables and electronic vehicle (EV) infrastructure projects.

Practice head(s):

David Cruickshank

Other key lawyers:

Stuart Fitzsimmons; Bill Fowler; Paul Young

Testimonials

‘The team have taken the time to get to know and understand our business and our team along with aligning themselves with our requirements and objectives’.

‘Despite being a third party provider, they now feel like an extension of our internal team’.

‘The individual attention and detail provided by David Cruishank has been excellent and we have now built up a solid rapport with a clear understanding of efficient ways of working’.

Key clients

Aggreko PLC

Blue Transmission

Dalmore Capital Limited

Octopus Energy

Power by Britishvolt plc

Viking Energy Shetland

Tenaga Nacional Berhad

OFWAT

National Grid

China Nuclear Power Design Company

Environment Tier 3

As an integral part of Dentons' UK-wide practice, the team routinely acts with colleagues from its London office to advise on environmental liability and compliance alongside environmental matters associated with transactions as well as energy and transport projects. While much of its work stems from the oil, gas and manufacturing sectors, the team has niche expertise in producer responsibility and green claims, which is regularly called upon by retail sector clients. Real estate sector players have recently received assistance with energy efficiency and flood mitigation issues. Senior associate Pamela Coulthard is the main contact in Scotland and handles all aspects of environmental regulatory and enforcement.

Practice head(s):

Pamela Coulthard

Testimonials

‘They network with firms around the world and have the ability to find appropriate people to work on our matters across the firm.

‘They provide good clear legal advice and respond quickly.’

‘Pamela Coulthard is very good.’

Key clients

Amazon EU Sarl

Network Rail Infrastructure Limited

Total S.A

British Volt

Ministry of Defence

Perenco UK Limited

Portsmouth City Council

Telford Three Limited

M&G Real Estate

Canpack Group

Slip Holdings Pty Ltd

Media and entertainment Tier 3

Dentons’ media and entertainment practice, which is led by Ross Nicol, leverages the firm’s international network to advise clients across a range of media spaces. Key areas of focus include media-related disputes, regulatory issues, M&A transactions, data protection matters and IP issues.

Practice head(s):

Ross Nicol

Testimonials

‘The team have taken the time to get to know and understand our business and our team along with aligning themselves with our requirements and objectives. Despite being a third party provider, they now feel an extension of our internal team.’

‘They are always extremely professional, proactive and responsive with evident domain expertise and good broader industry knowledge and very pleasant indeed to work with.’

‘The team at Dentons goes above and beyond by not just providing sound legal advice, they also assist you with interpreting this and supporting you 24/7 if needed.’

Key clients

Peters Fraser Dunlop Group Limited

Virgin Group

BBC Scotland

Warner Music Group

Yamaha

Facebook

MTG

Nordic Entertainment

Anthem Entertainment

Sonco Gaming

STV

Edinburgh International Festival

Photo Name Position Profile
 Claire Armstrong  photo Claire Armstrong Claire is a partner in the Firm’s Asset Management practice, dividing her…
 Allan Cairns  photo Allan Cairns Allan is a Partner in the Real Estate practice and is based…
 David Cruickshank  photo David Cruickshank David Cruickshank is a Partner in the firm’s Public Procurement practice. He…
 Tim Edward  photo Tim Edward Tim is a partner and a member of our Litigation and Dispute…
 Bill Fowler  photo Bill Fowler Bill is a Corporate partner in our Edinburgh office. He specializes in…
 Gareth Hale  photo Gareth Hale Gareth is a partner in the Litigation and Dispute Resolution team, having…
 Michael Livingston  photo Michael Livingston Partner specialising in all aspects of corporate, financial services banking and insurance…
 Stewart Maciver  photo Stewart Maciver Stewart is a Partner in the firm’s Infrastructure and PPP department. He…
 David McGrory  photo David McGrory David is a partner in the Corporate practice who splits his time…
 Brian Hugh Moore  photo Brian Hugh Moore Brian is a Corporate partner in the Firm’s Edinburgh office and has…
 Kirsti Olson  photo Kirsti Olson Dual-qualified in Scotland and England, Kirsti is a construction dispute resolution lawyer…
 Andrew Orr  photo Andrew Orr Andrew is a partner in the Firm’s Infrastructure and PPP department. Andrew…
 James Wilson  photo James Wilson James is a partner in the Banking and Finance team based in…
 Euan Wilson  photo Euan Wilson Euan is a partner in the Infrastructure team with 23 years’ experience…

Our Inclusion & Diversity commitment is a global one and a key part of our strategy to be the most inclusive firm.  Accountability is driven through the Global and Regional Boards, with our Global CEO, Elliott Portnoy, leading the Global I&D Leadership Council with leaders from across our regions to shape the global I&D strategy.  This includes global policy development and co-ordination of our women’s and LGBT networks across the firm.  In 2019, we ran The Big Inclusion Project, a collaboration of 12 cross-regional teams of lawyers and business services professionals working together to identify and solution inclusion topics.  2020 was our Year of the Ally and also saw the launch of our Accelerating Race strategy to advance our progress on race diversity and inclusion.

We start with inclusion as we believe that inclusion will help drive greater diversity, whereas diversity is not enough on its own.   Our I&D strategy is organised around the three key pillars of Talent – to attract, retain and progress the best people;  Culture – to be the most inclusive firm; and Clients – to collaborate with our clients on I&D and progress priorities together.

In terms of breadth and reach we have a broad commitment to I&D, rather than a single focus, with programmes on gender, ethnicity, LGBT and social mobility.  Many of our people are engaged in these efforts via our diversity networks – Inspire, our gender network; Black Professionals Network; Fusion – our Asian professionals network;  Parents and Carer’s; and Glow – our LGBT network.

The Lex 100 Verdict

‘Dentons’ internationality exudes from every pore; much of the experience you gain, the work you do and people you meet will have an international element to them’. The ‘ambitious’ firm’s ‘commitment to innovation is impressive’ and ‘the broad spectrum offering means more opportunities to explore different practice areas’. Dentons offers training contracts in London, Milton Keynes and Scotland’s Central Belt, and for many trainees, the prospect of ‘City work without having to be based in London’ was a big draw. Some of the tasks recruits enjoyed the most were ‘drafting an important witness statement in a trademark dispute which received rave reviews’, ‘being given sole responsibility for drafting the transactional documents of a multi-million-pound acquisition’ and ‘being flown out to Madrid for a client’s closing dinner’. Far less enjoyable were ‘a really crazy client that emailed about 20 times a day’, ‘continued long hours over a two-week period before a signing’ and ‘reviewing four prospectus blacklines at 4am on a Saturday’. The Dentons training programme offers ‘a good level of responsibility at an early stage’ and ‘partners and associates are really great at getting trainees involved in interesting work’. It is also encouraging that the ‘supportive team environment’ remained despite the pandemic as supervisors were ‘good at keeping in touch while we’re working from home’. The ‘limited seat options in Milton Keynes’ were lamented, but the main complaints centred around the ‘Covid-based salary cuts’, which were implemented despite the fact that ‘working hours substantially increased for all fee-earners’. A higher NQ salary is also on trainees’ wish list. To undertake ‘far-reaching work’ for ‘big-name clients’ at ‘one of the most global law firms on earth’, consider Dentons.

Dentons secures final victory for ICT on European patent infringement case against ESSITY

Global law firm Dentons is pleased to announce that the Paris Court of Appeal, the Higher Regional Court of Karlsruhe and the Barcelona Provincial Court have all issued final decisions dismissing Essity’s claims of patent infringement in regards to Industrie Cartarie Tronchetti’s (ICT) three ply toilet paper. With Dentons’ counsel, ICT successfully demonstrated beyond a doubt that its branded and private label products are produced based on its own proprietary process, and patented under European patent 2 353 859. 

Dentons has been advising Industrie Cartarie Tronchetti S.p.A since 2016. Based in Lucca, ICT is a leader in the category of high quality tissue paper products for domestic use, and has subsidiaries in Italy, Spain, Germany, France and Poland.

The Paris decision, which is the most recent, ends a long-running patent infringement litigation with Essity and affirms ICT can continue to produce and distribute absorbent paper based on its own proprietary technology. The three courts in France, Germany, and Spain have confirmed ICT’s argument that it is using its own novel technology, also patented. Essity’s claims of infringement were based on a patent originally filed by Georgia Pacific, and subsequently becoming Essity’s.

Dentons partner David Masson served as lead partner and represented ICT in France. Dentons partner Dr. Constantin Rehaag represented ICT in Germany, and PwC partner Alejandra Matas Brancós represented the client in Spain, with the support of Dentons partner Juan Ignacio Alonso.

David Masson, lead lawyer on the case, commented: “It has been very interesting to understand ICT’s own technology and work closely with different teams, including ICT’s R&D department, which has been part of all strategic and technical decisions throughout the case”.

Constantin Rehaag, who represented the client in the German court hearings and coordinated the work with the client’s patent attorneys, said: “This is an outstanding success of a great team formed by the client, who provided us with invaluable technological insight, the team of patent attorneys and, finally, by the Dentons teams in France, Spain and Germany.”

The patent litigation began in 2016 when Essity sued ICT in France, Germany and Spain for the alleged infringement of its patent related to the technical solution for the bonding of three layers of tissue for paper products such as high quality, soft and bulky, toilet paper.

In France, Essity claimed that ICT had breached the French part of its European patent 1 081 284 and that the toilet paper marketed as Foxy Soie Plus, and also certain other private labels produced by ICT France, had infringed on their patent. Essity demanded that all production operations be halted. The rolls of toilet paper were carefully analyzed and there were no findings of infringement. The two French courts - in first instance and appeal - rejected the claims and ordered Essity to pay compensation for the legal fees to ICT Italy and ICT France.

In Germany, the case was first taken to the Mannheim District Court, which is well reputed in patent matters. The lawsuit mainly focused on the complex questions regarding the construing of the claims of Essity’s patent. The court ruled in favour of ICT, and Essity filed an appeal. In August 2019, the Higher Regional Court of Karlsruhe also ruled that the German subsidiary of ICT did not infringe the German part of the patent 1 081 284.

In Spain, after a first decision in favor of Essity in the lower court, the Barcelona Provincial Court clearly stated in a written appeal that ICT’s products - and in particular, Foxy Seda, Foxy Bouquet, certain three-ply private label products - did not infringe the Spanish part of the patent 1 081 284.

About ICT

Industrie Cartarie Tronchetti (ICT) was founded in 1976 in Italy, in the Lucca province, to operate in the tissue sector, producing high quality paper exclusively from virgin fibre. The first production facility was opened in 1978 in Piano della Rocca, Lucca, and over the years new plants and facilities have been set up in Piano della Rocca, Diecimo and Piano di Coreglia. The Foxy brand, one of the leading brands in the European market, was launched in 1982. ICT is an example of excellence in the paper industry, in full harmony with the tradition of the Lucca region, where the most important Italian papermaking hub is located, on a par with those of Green Bay (USA) and Fuji (Japan). In Lucca in particular, great expertise has been nurtured in the field of paper for household use, and the city is in fact known as the world tissue capital. Today, ICT SpA boasts an annual production capacity of about 160,000 tonnes.

About Dentons

Dentons is the world's largest law firm, connecting talent to the world's challenges and opportunities in more than 75 countries. Dentons' legal and business solutions benefit from deep roots in our communities and award-winning advancements in client service, including Nextlaw, Dentons’ innovation and strategic advisory services. Dentons' polycentric and purpose-driven approach, commitment to inclusion and diversity, and world-class talent challenge the status quo to advance client and community interests in the New Dynamic.


Dentons advises Snam on US$10.1 billion consortium investment in ADNOC Gas Pipelines

Global law firm Dentons advised Italian-based multinational energy infrastructure operator Snam in relation to its agreement, in consortium with several international investment funds, to purchase a 49 percent share of ADNOC Gas Pipelines from The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC). ADNOC Gas Pipelines is valued at approximately US$20.7 billion (US$10.1 billion for 49%).

The transaction is one of the most important in the global energy infrastructure sector, as well as Snam’s first acquisition outside Europe.  ADNOC Gas Pipelines holds the tariff-based rights for the 38 pipelines that connect ADNOC’s upstream activities to Abu Dhabi’s consumption points and the export and interconnection terminals to neighboring Emirates.

The transaction was financed by a pool of international banks for approximately $8 billion, plus an equity contribution from each of the consortium members.  In addition to Snam, the other consortium members included Global Infrastructure Partners, Brookfield Asset Management, GIC, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, and NH Investment & Securities.

Dentons acted with a cross-border team from Italy and UAE, coordinated by partner Sara Biglieri in Milan.  Partners Luca Pocobelli (Rome) and Mhairi Main Garcia (Dubai), counsel Claudio Segna (Milan), senior associate Craig Hughson (Abu Dhabi) and associate Stephanie Hawes (Dubai) advised on corporate and M&A aspects. Partners Alessandro Fosco Fagotto (Milan) and Stephen Knight (Abu Dhabi), counsel Franco Gialloreti, senior associate Tommaso Zanirato and junior associate Giulia Caselli Maldonado (all Milan) advised on financing aspects. Partner Michele Carpagnano (Rome) and associate Giulia Giordano (Rome) advised on the competition and antitrust aspects.

Snam’s internal legal team was led by General Counsel, Marco Reggiani - assisted by Michela Schizzi, Senior Vice President Regulated Assets Legal Affairs - and included senior legal counsels Rosanna Pallotta and Claudia Jolanda Fanelli.  The legal aspects related to the financing were handled, together with Marco Reggiani, by Gloria Bertini, Head of Finance and Capital Market Legal Affairs and Roberta Di Mauro, legal counsel.


Dentons advises Investitionsbank Berlin (IBB) on the establishment of the EU Malaria Fund

The EU Malaria Fund was initiated by the kENUP Foundation, a not-for-profit organization promoting research-based innovation with public and societal benefit. The fund is managed by the IBB Group. The target volume of the fund amounts to €280 million, with a first closing of €70 million on June 3, 2020. A Dentons team from Berlin, Frankfurt, Dusseldorf and Munich provided comprehensive advice to IBB Group on the establishment of the EU Malaria Fund. This included the development of the legal and tax conception of the fund, regulatory advice, corporate law support on the setup of the fund, and the negotiation of the financing agreements with the EIB, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and other investors. Berlin-based partner Dirk-Reiner Voss and Frankfurt-based partner Arne Klüwer jointly led the Dentons team, with support from partners Stephan Busch, Matthias Santelmann and senior associates Holger Hölkemeier and Bernd Düsterbeck in Berlin; counsel Verena Etzel and Oda Elmoutaouakil in Frankfurt; partner Axel Schlieter in Dusseldorf, and partner Richard Fagerer in Munich. About Dentons Dentons is the world's largest law firm, connecting talent to the world's challenges and opportunities in more than 75 countries. Dentons' legal and business solutions benefit from deep roots in our communities and award-winning advancements in client service, including Nextlaw, Dentons’ innovation and strategic advisory services. Dentons' polycentric and purpose-driven approach, commitment to inclusion and diversity, and world-class talent challenge the status quo to advance client and community interests in the New Dynamic. www.dentons.com

Dentons advises on ACS Group’s €500 million NEU-CP Program

Dentons, the world’s largest law firm, has advised Spanish-based multinational construction group, Actividades de Construcción y Servicios, S.A. (ACS), on the renewal of its €500 million Negotiable European Commercial Paper (NEU-CP) Program. The NEU-CP program is registered with the Central Bank of France, with the involvement of BNP Paribas, BRED Banque Populaire, Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank, ING Bank N.V. and Natixis, as dealers for the Notes. Headquartered in Madrid, the ACS Group is a worldwide leader in construction and services. It is currently the only non-financial issuer with a NEU-CP Program registered with the Central Bank of France. Dentons’ Capital Markets group in Madrid advised ACS on all aspects of the transaction. Partner Ignacio Corujo led and coordinated the transaction with the support of junior associate Ana Artola. Ignacio Corujo joined Dentons in January this year to establish and lead the Capital Markets group in Spain. In addition to this most recent deal for ACS, he has closed several high-value debt capital markets deals since his move, including most notably, Grupo Cajamar’s €1 billion issuance of mortgage bonds, as well as Sacyr’s renewal of its €500 million EMTN Program. About Dentons Dentons is the world's largest law firm, connecting talent to the world's challenges and opportunities in more than 75 countries. Dentons' legal and business solutions benefit from deep roots in our communities and award-winning advancements in client service, including Nextlaw, Dentons’ innovation and strategic advisory services. Dentons' polycentric and purpose-driven approach, commitment to inclusion and diversity, and world-class talent challenge the status quo to advance client and community interests in the New Dynamic. www.dentons.com  

Dentons advises UniCredit on a €450 million secured sustainability-linked financing for Gunvor Gro

Global law firm Dentons has advised UniCredit Bank AG as Mandated Lead Arranger, (Sustainability) Coordinator, Bookrunner, Facility Agent and Security Agent as well as the lenders on a €450 million secured sustainability-linked borrowing base facility agreement with Gunvor Group. Gunvor Group will use the funds to cover the working capital requirements of its Ingolstadt refinery. The innovative financing model is tied to the borrower's achievement of predetermined ESG key performance indicators (Sustainability KPIs) and provides for a sustainability discount or premium in case the company overachieves or underperforms the predefined targets. An independent sustainability auditor will report on the performance of the Sustainability KPIs on an annual basis. The ESG-based scoring of certain key performance indicators provides a unique way for borrowers and lenders to communicate their commitment to sustainability and incentivizes sustainable corporate measures. Participating banks included DZ Bank, KfW IPEX-Bank, Raiffeisen Bank International, Erste Group Bank, Commerzbank, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, CA Indosuez (Switzerland), Bank of China and First Abu Dhabi Bank. Gunvor Group is one of the world’s largest independent commodities trading houses by turnover, creating logistics solutions that safely and efficiently move physical energy from where it is sourced and stored to where it is demanded. With strategic investments in industrial infrastructure – refineries, pipelines, storage and terminals – Gunvor Group further generates sustainable value across the global supply chain for its customers. UniCredit is one of the pioneers in sustainable loans in the German market. Düsseldorf finance partner Dr. Axel Schlieter fully advised the bank on the drafting and negotiation of the loan agreement. The Dentons team further comprised Julia Heitmann (senior associate, Banking and Finance, Düsseldorf) and Eike Hinrich Pradt (associate, Banking and Finance, Frankfurt). Axel Schlieter is a core member of Dentons’ Sustainable Finance group in Europe and is regularly involved around the topics of issuance of green bonds and on sustainable financing. Advisors to UniCredit: Dentons (Düsseldorf): Dr. Axel Schlieter, (lead partner), Julia Heitmann (senior associate, both banking and finance, Düsseldorf), Eike Hinrich Pradt (associate, banking and finance, Frankfurt am Main) UniCredit inhouse lawyers: Carina Engelhardt, Alexander Strigin, Christian Hentrich About Dentons Dentons is the world's largest law firm, connecting talent to the world's challenges and opportunities in more than 75 countries. Dentons' legal and business solutions benefit from deep roots in our communities and award-winning advancements in client service, including Nextlaw, Dentons’ innovation and strategic advisory services. Dentons' polycentric and purpose-driven approach, commitment to inclusion and diversity, and world-class talent challenge the status quo to advance client and community interests in the New Dynamic. www.dentons.com

Dentons advises Qair on refinancing of the acquisition of Rzepin and Linowo wind farms in Poland

Dentons’ Banking and Finance practice team advised Qair SAS, Qair International and Qair Polska Sp.z o.o. in connection with the refinancing of two wind farms under operation, Rzepin (58 MW) and Linowo (48 MW). The financing institutions are BNP Paribas and EBRD. The two wind farms are part of Qair’s larger portfolio of almost 200 MW of renewable energy sources, which also includes 93 MW of new capacity from three wind farms – Udanin (50 MW), Parzeczew (9 MW) and Września (9 MW) – and 25 MW of solar photovoltaic. The project was supervised by Mateusz Toczyski, Head of the Europe and Co-Head of the Global Banking and Finance practice, and led by Tomasz Zwoliński, counsel, with assistance from lawyers Klaudia Szymańska-Rutkowska, Katarzyna Mazur, Katarzyna Kaptur and Jakub Walawski. Supporting the Warsaw team were counsel Surbhi Malhotra-Trenkel in Munich and partners Jean-Marc Allix and Olivier Genevois, and associates Djésia Meziani, Philippine de Fouchier and Hugo Casasnovas in Paris. Dentons’ London team consisting of partner Matthew Sapte and associate Annreika Ray advised on the hedging documentation. “We are very pleased and honored to have had this opportunity to assist Qair in yet another wind power project the company has undertaken in Poland,” said Mateusz Toczyski. “We would like to congratulate Qair on this financing and to wish every success with further developments and investments in Poland and elsewhere in the world,” added Tomasz Zwoliński. About Dentons Dentons is the world's largest law firm, connecting talent to the world's challenges and opportunities in more than 75 countries. Dentons' legal and business solutions benefit from deep roots in our communities and award-winning advancements in client service, including Nextlaw, Dentons’ innovation and strategic advisory services. Dentons' polycentric and purpose-driven approach, commitment to inclusion and diversity, and world-class talent challenge the status quo to advance client and community interests in the New Dynamic. www.dentons.com

Dentons advises Sev.en Energy on aacquisition of US-based Blackhawk Mining

Dentons has advised international energy group Sev.en Energy on its strategic acquisition of US-based metallurgical coal producer Blackhawk Mining, LLC. C. The transaction comes on the heels of Sev.en Energy’s acquisition of a 17% ownership interest in Corsa Coal in May 2020, further reinforcing its access to the metallurgical coal mining industry in the US market. Blackhawk Mining is one of the largest metallurgical coal producers in the US. With annual production capacity of seven to eight million tonnes of metallurgical coal among its five underground and open pit mining complexes in West Virginia and Kentucky, Blackhawk Mining is an important supplier of metallurgical coal both locally and internationally. It also owns three thermal coal mine complexes producing three to four million tonnes per annum. In 2019, Blackhawk Mining had $1bn revenues and $120m EBITDA.   Commenting on the acquisition, Dentons partner Petr Zákoucký, said: “Having worked for Sev.en Energy for many years, I am inspired by their sustained dynamism, and by this bold strategic move, even during these difficult market conditions. We were delighted to have opportunity to play our role in this success.”   Alan Svoboda, Executive Director of Sev.en Energy who leads the Group’s international expansion added: “Once again, the Dentons team exceeded our expectations and delivered the transaction within a tight time frame of less than a month, nailing both the complexity of the deal and challenges created by the current worldwide pandemic. What was really outstanding was the dedication and flexibility that the entire team showed.”   Dentons’ cross-border team was composed of partners Petr Zákoucký (Prague, Energy/M&A), Ilan Katz (New York, M&A), Lee Smith (New York, Finance), Christopher Van Bever (Lexington, Mining) and John Rhine (Evansville, Mining) Robert E. Richards (Chicago, Insolvency), Managing Associate Gregory DiBella (New York, M&A) and Associate Barbora Obračajová (Prague, Energy). Alvarez & Marsal advised Sev.en Energy on financial due diligence and Weir on technical due diligence.   About Sev.en Energy Sev.en Energy owns significant coal and energy production assets in the Czech Republic, the United Kingdom, Australia and the USA. It is the largest private operator of coalmines and conventional power plants in the Czech Republic, and employs more than 3,500 people. In 2019, Sev.en Energy acquired additional power generation assets from Swiss energy group Alpiq and a 50% stake in the multinational energy company – InterGen N.V., which is one of the leading independent power generators with gas-fired power plants in the UK and coal-fired power plants and coal mines in Australia. When pro-forma aggregated with the financial results of InterGen and Alpiq CZ, Sev.en Energy group combined revenues in 2019 were EUR 1,4 billion and EBITDA of EUR 319 million.   About Dentons Dentons is the world's largest law firm, connecting talent to the world's challenges and opportunities in more than 75 countries. Dentons' legal and business solutions benefit from deep roots in our communities and award-winning advancements in client service, including Nextlaw, Dentons’ innovation and strategic advisory services. Dentons' polycentric and purpose-driven approach, commitment to inclusion and diversity, and world-class talent challenge the status quo to advance client and community interests in the New Dynamic. www.dentons.com

Dentons supports German subsidiaries of the Recylex Group in restructuring

Global law firm Dentons is assisting Weser-Metall GmbH and Harz-Metall GmbH, both subsidiaries of the French-German Recylex Group, with their restructuring through ‘self-administration’ proceedings. In addition, Dentons restructuring lawyers Andreas Ziegenhagen and Dirk Schoene and their team are advising the German management of the Recylex Group within the scope of its self-administration. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and the dramatic decline in metal prices, the German subsidiaries of Recylex have each applied for protective shield proceedings under German insolvency law. The aim of the protective shield is to allow the companies to continue their individual restructuring measures and to return to economic stability after the pandemic - if necessary, in a new shareholder structure. Weser-Metall produces about 100,000 tons of lead per year at its headquarters in Nordenham (Lower Saxony), making it the third largest lead smelter and the second largest lead recycler in Europe. Harz-Metall has its headquarters in Oker in the Harz Mountains and is one of the leading European recycling companies for lead and zinc contaminated waste. The Recylex group has a total of eleven operating units and two administrative sites in France and Germany. In addition to the companies supported by Dentons, two other companies in the group, Norzinco GmbH and PPM Pure Metals GmbH, have also submitted applications for protective shield, whilethree other German subsidiaries requested self-administration under creditor protection. The Group's French companies are not affected. Andreas Ziegenhagen, Head of the Europe and German Restructuring practice, said: "With the filing for protective shield proceedings, we are making use of the most restructuring-friendly court proceedings in the interest of all stakeholders of the companies”. Advisor to Harz Metall / Weser Metall / German management of Recylex: Dentons (Berlin): Andreas Ziegenhagen (Partner, Restructuring, Berlin/Frankfurt), Dirk Schoene (Partner), Dr. Jan Seelinger (Counsel), Dr. Benjamin Kurzberg (Counsel), Judith Schmid (Senior Associate), Dr. Jakob Pickartz (Senior Associate), all Restructuring and Insolvency About Dentons Dentons is the world's largest law firm, connecting talent to the world's challenges and opportunities in more than 75 countries. Dentons' legal and business solutions benefit from deep roots in our communities and award-winning advancements in client service, including Nextlaw, Dentons’ innovation and strategic advisory services. Dentons' polycentric and purpose-driven approach, commitment to inclusion and diversity, and world-class talent challenge the status quo to advance client and community interests in the New Dynamic. www.dentons.com