Firm Profile > DLA Piper > Leeds, England

DLA Piper
PRINCES EXCHANGE
PRINCES SQUARE
LEEDS
LS1 4BY
England

Banking and finance Tier 1

DLA Piper's team 'combines experience, commerciality and hard work to great effect' and is recommended for advice on real estate finance, project finance and asset-based lending. Kirstie Allerton, who focuses on real estate finance and education sector finance, assists lenders and borrowers with development facilities and specific project finance matters. Sarah Day acts for UK banks, US banks and finance companies in structured asset-based lending transactions. Legal director Ben Roden focuses on corporate lending to national and international entities, and has additional experience in project finance transactions and restructurings. Fellow directors Robert Cockburn and Laura Gordon have expertise in energy and infrastructure finance. Anna Robson departed for Shoosmiths LLP in late 2020.

Practice head(s):

Kirstie Allerton; Sarah Day

Other key lawyers:

Robert Cockburn; Ben Roden; Laura Gordon

Testimonials

‘DLA Piper know their clients and take the time to understand our needs, wants and nice-to-haves! Each team member plays to their strengths and they combine experience, commerciality and hard work to great effect. Long may it continue!’

Key clients

Norddeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale

Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation

National Australia Bank

Aviva Commercial Finance Limited

Henry Boot PLC

NatWest Bank plc

Town Centre Securities plc

Banking litigation Tier 1

DLA Piper's Leeds-based financial services disputes team is praised for having 'robust litigators' who 'can go toe-to-toe with the best of the dispute resolution firms in London'. Led by Adam Ibrahim, the group has 'an encyclopaedic knowledge and experience of retail banking litigation' and counts complex derivatives, fraud, insolvency and corporate lending disputes among its other areas of expertise. Chris Harvey has been developing the group's Covid lending disputes practice, while recently promoted Sohail Ali has particular experience in Islamic finance and private equity litigation. Other growth areas for the practice include class actions and contentious data privacy issues, for which legal director Claire Clayton-Stead is highlighted. The group also includes 'highly experienced' senior consultant Hugh Evans.

Practice head(s):

Adam Ibrahim

Other key lawyers:

Hugh Evans; Chris Harvey; Sohail Ali; Claire Clayton-Stead; Jessica Legler; Paul McNamee

Testimonials

‘A very experienced team used to handling not only smaller and medium sized disputes for financial institutions but also very heavy litigation, and can go toe-to-toe with the best of the dispute resolution firms in London. A rigorous and robust approach to litigation. A real understanding of the needs, priorities and preferred strategies of financial institutions in banking litigation.’

‘Hugh Evans – senior consultant, highly experienced, great strategic mind, fully tuned into the needs of the bank. Chris Harvey – partner, calm, robust and effective litigator. Sohail Ali – legal director, definitely a rising star, exceptional client handling skills and frighteningly efficient. Claire Clayton-Stead – legal director, very effective forensic approach to litigation.’

‘The DLA banking team have an encyclopaedic knowledge and experience of retail banking litigation. Their understanding of how their clients work is almost unparalleled and they are amongst the best in the field. This is combined with individuals who are all very easy and reassuring to work.’

‘Adam Ibrahim has a deep knowledge of retail banking litigation, which gives him a great feel for how a case will develop, the issues that a Judge will focus upon, and how best to drive litigation forward in the way that is best for the client. Chris Harvey is very quick and intelligent. He will have got to the bottom of a problem in a case before some solicitors would have noticed the problem.

Claire Clayton-Stead has a great understanding of her clients (and their opponents), what information is needed to win a case, where to find it and how to deploy it in a strategic way to give best results in a case. Paul McNamee is similarly reassuring to work with, evincing experience in the field. He also has a good feel for the way that a case will develop, where to find the necessary information and how best to use it.’

‘Chris Harvey (Partner) – exceptional in terms of responsiveness and broke up the legal jargon of the proceedings and gave it to us straight. Much appreciated by the business.’

‘They are an organised and efficient team of robust litigators, while also being easy and friendly to deal with. They are fully up-to-speed on the latest legal developments and are commercially astute.’

‘Sohail Ali – great client engagement and management; strong case management skills, with a good awareness and anticipation of future difficulties. Very easy to work with. Adam Ibrahim – calm under pressure with the experience needed to guide the client through handling difficult and unexpected situations.’

Key clients

Bank of Ireland

Lloyds Banking Group (including Bank of Scotland)

NatWest Group

PwC

Leeds Building Society

GE Capital

ANZ Bank

Syndicate Bank and Canara Bank

Deutsche Bank

New Day

Commercial litigation: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire Tier 1

DLA Piper‘s litigation and regulatory practice is praised for its ability to ‘effortlessly handle high-octane, large-scale litigation with great tactical skill‘. It has particular experience in a range of corporate and commercial disputes as well as pensions and trust litigation, which are among David Young‘s specialisms. Young jointly leads the team alongside technology disputes expert Simon Kenyon, who is also experienced in India-related cases. The group is also strong for transport sector disputes including procurement litigation, while Paul Stone has particular expertise in public law issues including judicial reviews, freedom of information work and human rights issues. ‘Very bright‘ legal director Kathryn Ford is another name to note for pension and procurement litigation and ‘knows electronic disclosure like the back of her hand‘.

Practice head(s):

David Young; Simon Kenyon

Other key lawyers:

Paul Stone; Kathryn Ford; Marie Fegan; Joanna Haigh; Hugh Evans

Testimonials

‘One of the best teams I have ever had the pleasure of working with.’

‘This team is impressive in the international reach of its work. The people are of a high quality and produce good outputs.’

‘Hugh Evans – seen it all before; huge experience; great strategic sense.’

‘Paul Stone is a stand out performer. Paul is very experienced and provides an excellent service. He has extremely good judgment and produces a high quality end product.’

‘Simon Kenyon is exceptional – utterly devoted to his clients, delivering the highest quality legal advice.’

‘Kathryn Ford is an astute and pragmatic tactician.’

Joanna Haigh demonstrated great empathy with witnesses and in doing so was able to produce high quality witness statements whilst keeping the individuals at ease and explaining the importance of their evidence. She was seen by stakeholders as a very approachable, knowledgeable and helpful individual.’

Key clients

HCL

CWT UK Limited

Heineken UK Limited

PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP

Placing Platform Limited

Provenir Inc

Investec Bank plc

WNS Global Services

Manx Telecom Limited

Department for Transport

Commercial litigation: Sheffield, South Yorkshire Tier 1

DLA Piper's litigation team applies a 'down-to-earth pragmatic approach' to a range of local, national and cross-border disputes. Practice head Richard Norman is known for his technology and telecoms sector expertise, while recently promoted Mick Lawlor counts technology and industrial companies as clients. Other names to note include legal director Paul McNamee, who is praised for his 'excellent tactical and legal awareness’, and senior associate Barney Connell, who has particular experience in acting for clients in the financial services, rail and technology sectors.

Practice head(s):

Richard Norman

Other key lawyers:

Paul McNamee; Daniel Jones; Barney Connell; Mick Lawlor

Testimonials

‘Above all, it is the team’s understanding of our business and the commercial nuances of a relatively small but quite complex business. Their down-to-earth pragmatic approach, as well as their ability to address matters very quickly, makes our lives as in-house legal counsel much easier.’

‘I have the utmost respect for the no-nonsense approach of both Richard Norman (partner) and Daniel Jones (Senior Associate). Their ability to promptly and balance the company’s legal issues with a rounded commercial understanding is of enormous benefit. They are a pleasure to deal with.

‘Solution-oriented, responsive and pragmatic. Focused on what is best for the client and the longer term.’

‘Richard Norman responds promptly with concise, clear and well-considered solutions.’

‘Paul McNamee has excellent tactical and legal awareness.’

‘Understanding of the business and speed of response and robustness to deal with complex challenges.’

‘The ability to understand the nature and nuances of our business.’

Key clients

Atos

DB Cargo

Coal Authority

Boots plc

CBRE

Arconic

Robert Bosch UK Holdings Limited

Gamma Telecom

Tata Communications

Adobe

Telenor

Verizon

Crowdstrike Inc

Sthree Management Services Limited

Fine Lady Bakeries

Commercial property: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire Tier 1

DLA Piper's 'practical and personal approach' sees it generate a strong flow of work from investors, national retailers, developers, financial institutions and blue-chip corporate clients. The firm is prominent in landmark transactions, development projects and financing matters. Andrew Clarke's practice encompasses the acquisition and development of new buildings, as well as the disposal of assets and share sales. He often acts for charities and clients operating in the renewable energy industry. Other key individuals include practice head Tim Field and hospitality sector specialist Susan SamuelRuth Williamson is knowledgeable about corporate occupier asset management.

Practice head(s):

Tim Field

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Clarke; Susan Samuel; Ruth Williamson

Testimonials

‘Attention to detail and working to tight deadlines without losing focus or quality of advice. Building close working relationships with us and understanding of our needs and requirements.’

‘Excellent service.’

‘Practical and professional approach.’

Key clients

Blackstone

Harrison Street Real Estate

Puma

NatWest Group PLC

Heineken

British Airways

Merlin Entertainments

Commercial property: Sheffield, South Yorkshire Tier 1

With over 30 years experience, DLA Piper's Nigel Howard is a leading name for advice on regeneration schemes, where he acts for developers, public bodies, landowners, multinational corporates and financial institutions. He also acts for housebuilders, commercial developers and public bodies on  developments in the leisure, logistics and education sectors. Stephen Blacksell is active in student accommodation developments. Mark Keeling handles sales and acquisitions, landlord and tenant, and large portfolio corporate and finance work.

Practice head(s):

Nigel Howard

Other key lawyers:

Stephen Blacksell; Mark Keeling

Testimonials

‘Mark Keeling – responsive, practical, commercial. Always a pleasure to deal with.’

‘Great work and support with the right level of guidance.’

‘DLA Piper are able to offer both a comprehensive range of partners and associates, as well as being expert and local to my organisation. They are extremely responsive and have provided an excellent service over many years.’

‘Nigel Howard has provided a great service and continues to do so. Nigel is very helpful, supportive and responsive, providing both a comprehensive and high quality service.’

Key clients

Wavin (Orbia)

Tata Steel UK Ltd

Langley Properties Limited (MAS REI)

University of Sheffield

ITM Power Plc

Watkin Jones

Sheffield Wednesday Football Club Limited

Construction Tier 1

DLA Piper's group comprises of 'practitioners who know their way around construction law' specialising in development/infrastructure projects, energy projects, PFI/PPP disputes and complex engineering disputes nationally and internationally. Ian Doig specialises in all non-contentious areas of energy and infrastructure-related construction. Ben Peecock acts for central and local government, project sponsors, developers, contractors and funders on infrastructure and large-scale development projects.

Practice head(s):

Ian Doig

Other key lawyers:

Ben Peecock

Testimonials

‘Very responsive and diligent team with a great focus on detail.’

‘They are clever practitioners who know their way around construction law. Very keen focus on the commercial aspects of the litigation and are willing to put the hours into what is needed.’

Good solid performers all round.’

Market leading knowledge base. Has taken the time to get to know our company.’

Key clients

Visa Europe Limited

Artisan Real Estate

Highways England

Henry Boot Developments

Tyne and Wear Passenger Transport Executive (Nexus)

Birmingham City Council

Kent and Medway Towns Fire Authority

Corporate and commercial: Leeds, West Yorkshire, North Yorkshire Tier 1

The 'excellent' corporate and commercial practice group at DLA Piper is singled out for its international capacity and handles high-value acquisitions and private equity deals. Andrew Davies oversees the group, which has sector strength cross the renewable energy, healthcare, and hospitality sectors; team co-chair Matthew Duncombe recently acted for Hyatt International. On the capital markets side, John Gallon is the key contact and continues to be instructed on deals spanning the consumer goods, manufacturing and construction sectors, whilst Stephen Atkinson handles M&A work. At the associate level, Milena Falciano-Padron advises on commercial contracts, franchising agreements and data protection issues. The team's capacity has been bolstered with the promotion of Amar Mann to the partnership; he brings a strong financial services background with clients including Triple Point Capital.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Davies; Matthew Duncombe

Other key lawyers:

Stephen Atkinson; John Gallon; Milena Falciano-Padron; Amar Mann

Testimonials

The team are excellent – always very responsive and client-focused. Backed-up with technical know-how and experience. Despite clearly being very busy, we always feel like a priority.’

John Gallon has been outstanding although this special mention should not diminish from the other members of the team who are also excellent. John supported our business on a highly time-pressured and important project last year and did not miss a beat. The perfect balance between being technical and ensuring the client understands the matters at hand and also knows exactly what is required of them.’

They are all very committed to meeting our objectives. Stephen Atkinson was extremely tuned into the commercial factors of the deal including the financial complexities.’

Key clients

Sun Capital

Paul International

HIG Capital

Domino’s

Bacardi

Vita Coco

Intercontinental Hotels Group

Triplepoint Capital

Toyota Fleet Mobility

Severfield

Tetra Tech UK

Pelsis Limited

Adler & Allan Limited

Wescom Signal & Rescue

Corporate and commercial: Sheffield, South Yorkshire Tier 1

Housed in Sheffield, DLA Piper's corporate practice has an excellent track record in acting on cross-border acquisitions and mid-market equity capital market transactions. Now jointly managed by practice heads Rob McKie and Amanda Pilkington, the team handles an assortment of deals across the technology, IT, and energy space, with Richard May being a key name for domestic and international matters. David Beech handles corporate transactions, complex restructurings, and equity investment work, and regularly leads a multijurisdictional team on M&A mandates. On the commercial side, consultant Roger Gough remains active within the team and is noted for contracts and supply agreements work across the retail, food and drink, and manufacturing sectors.

Practice head(s):

Rob McKie; Amanda Pilkington

Other key lawyers:

Richard May; David Beech; Roger Gough

Testimonials

‘The team act as an integrated part of DLA Piper and are able to draw on the expertise of the firm not only the skills in the immediate team practice area. They are easy to work with and the size of the team make them available when time pressing work is needed.’

‘At all levels of seniority the team work with calm professional skill and care. As most of the work is transaction related they are flexible and can work at any hour of the day when the deal timetable gets tight. As they are experienced their advice and guidance in tense situations is delivered in a professional and personal way.’

‘David Beech is an excellent technical lawyer, as well as being personable and a pleasure to work with. He understands and highlights the key commercial issues and proposes sensible solutions. David is also extremely reliable, readily available to join calls on short notice and provide any support required.’

‘Our DLA Piper Team are excellent at picking up the matters we need them for and leaving us to deal with the matters we can handle in-house. They have worked with us on two fundraises and have been excellent in highlighting the key matters to focus on while working with our project team.’

‘Rob McKie is readily accessible when we need him and is excellent at getting to the heart of complex matters so they can be dealt with swiftly.’

Key clients

Arconic Corporation

Howmet Aerospace

Unlimited Group

Iconic Labs plc

Formula E

Avanti Gas Ltd

Reckitt Benckiser

Mothercare

THE World Universities Insights

University of Sheffield

Employment: Leeds and West Yorkshire; North Yorkshire Tier 1

DLA Piper’s 'excellent' employment group has an impressive client list comprised of large corporates operating across the financial services, technology and public sectors. Led by Jane Hannon, the team handles a steady stream of complex restructuring mandates, corporate transactions and business immigration work. Legal director Chris Baker is also a core part of the group.

Practice head(s):

Jane Hannon

Other key lawyers:

Chris Baker

Testimonials

‘Excellent, practical advice from a very experienced team, without paying London fee rates.’

‘I work closely with Chris Baker in the employment team in Leeds. Chris is an excellent partner to my team and is a trusted adviser who can always be relied on to find innovative solutions to complex legal and business puzzles.’

Employment: Sheffield and South Yorkshire Tier 1

DLA Piper’s employment practice continues to be highly rated by peers and clients for its international strength across the retail, hospitality, and technology sectors. Headed up by Clare Gregory and Gurpreet Duhra, the team handles senior executive severances, cross-border restructurings and outsourcing issues. TUPE matters also feature in the caseload, as well as contentious matters before the Employment Tribunal.

Practice head(s):

Clare Gregory; Gurpreet Duhra

Testimonials

‘The Employment team at DLA have supported us with a number of complex and high profile cases with the high potential for reputational damage to our organisation. Their advice and support is always broader than the pure legal aspects of the case – something which is greatly appreciated, not just by HR professionals in our organisation, but by our senior managers as well.’

‘Clare Gregory provides us with exceptional support. We have relied on her to support us in some of the most sensitive matters and without fail her guidance and advice has been outstanding. She is always accessible, extremely flexible and has an excellent understanding of the context in which we operate. She is an extremely reassuring colleague and I, and many others, appreciate her straightforward advice, support and good humour.’

Environment Tier 1

At DLA PiperTeresa Hitchcock has expertise in contaminated land, nuisance disputes and regeneration projects. She is also a prominent figure on the subject of climate change, and regularly appears in regional and national real estate boards and panels as an expert in environmental law. Her main clients include manufacturers, energy companies, industrials and regulators. Alastair Clough is recommended for regulatory licensing and enforcement, waste management issues and assessing environmental liability risk in transactions.

Practice head(s):

Teresa Hitchcock

Other key lawyers:

Alastair Clough

Testimonials

‘From a client perspective the team understood the issue and suggested potential ways of dealing with it in a cost effective way.’

‘The team are very knowledgeable about very niche areas and are able to apply their legal knowledge to our business needs and problems.’

‘Alistair Clough is extremely knowledgeable and very approachable.’

‘The team has great knowledge of any regulatory matters and are always of help and advice whenever needed.’

‘The team at DLA Piper is very professional. The team has globally renowned strengths and capabilities in environment practice, climate change, real estate, technology, innovation and collaboration etc. which are all important and underpin their excellent people, billing and services management.’

‘Teresa Hitchcock is an outstanding partner. She is very knowledgeable and experienced in these areas and stands-out. Our partnerships, interactions and collaborations are exceptional. She not only provides what is required but goes above and beyond expectations.’

Key clients

Tarmac Services Limited

Tata Steel UK Limited

Mothercare Global Brands

Pfizer Inc

BASF

Pilkington Technology Management Limited

Health and safety Tier 1

Based in Sheffield, the practice at DLA Piper is instructed on a mix of non-contentious and contentious matters from clients operating in high-risk sectors including the manufacturing and construction industries. Led by Teresa Hitchcock, the team ‘delivers a top-quality service’ and is skilled in transactional mandates, regulatory compliance work and investigations. Alastair Clough is the key name for compliance matters; he also has a focus on waste management issues and environmental law. Director Ailish Oxenforth is also a core member. The group has various domestic and global corporates as key clients.

Practice head(s):

Teresa Hitchcock

Other key lawyers:

Ailish Oxenforth; Alistair Clough; Simon Tingle

Testimonials

‘A very strong team practice, they are able to deliver a top quality service with experts through the field.’

‘Ailish Oxenforth is a superb lawyer with excellent tactical nous and a real way with clients.’

‘Consistent dedicated support. In-depth knowledge of clients business to enable informed and bespoke advice.’

‘Teresa Hitchcock – valued opinions and advice. Consummate professional and able to deal with arising issues quickly and effectively. Ailish Oxenforth – thorough with an expert attention to detail. Gives a rounded approach and brings a personable approach to bring out the best in clients.’

‘Simon Tingle is incredibly bright; a star of the future in the health and safety and regulatory world.’

‘Simon Tingle has been involved in a number of major safety cases. He is very strong on detail and keeps the client onside with his enthusiasm and preparedness. Good on tactics and willingness to try alternative strategies. Great team player and valued by clients.’

Key clients

Arconic Corporation

VolkerRail Limited

Brother Industries UK Limited

Axa Real Estate Investment Managers UK Ltd

Reckitt Benckiser Healthcare UK Limited

Sytner Group Limited trading as Mercedes Benz of Northampton

Infrastructure and energy Tier 1

DLA Piper handles an arsenal of big-ticket international energy projects and is jointly led by key partners Natasha Luther-Jones, who is also the firm’s global chair of energy and natural resources, Robert Smith and Ben Peecock. The group has strength in the renewable energy space, particularly across high-value offshore wind farm financing work and acquisitions. Dual-qualified senior associate Rob Cockburn advises on the financing and refinancing of energy and infrastructure projects in the UK and Europe. Also in the group is senior associate Jennifer Keogh, who focuses on corporate PPA matters. Stephen Atkinson works closely with Luther-Jones on renewable energy matters, acting for both buyers and sellers. Allison Page departed the firm for DWF.

Practice head(s):

Natasha-Luther Jones; Robert Smith; Ben Peecock

Other key lawyers:

Rob Cockburn; Jennifer Keogh; Stephen Atkinson

Testimonials

Natasha is an absolute star, very quick in grasping the needs of a client and is the main player in the team.’

Key clients

Prime Capital AG

NTR Plc

Greencoat Wind UK Plc

EIP – (formerly known as Credit Suisse Energy Infrastructure Partners)

Greencoat Solar Assets I Limited and Greencoat Solar Assets II Limited

Equitix

Nord/LB

Investec Bank

Ignitis grupė UAB

City of London

Drax

DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale

EY

Platina partners

Commerz Real

AB InBev

UK Department for Transport (DfT)

Tyne and Wear Passenger Transport Executive

Highways England

Transport for Greater Manchester

Boston Scientific

Intellectual property Tier 1

Highlighted as 'robust and insightful', the IP practice at DLA Piper continues to be at the forefront of acting for high-profile national and global corporates operating in the technology sector. Overseen by Leigh Martin in Leeds and Sheffield-based Richard Taylor, the group handles a significant amount of IP litigation, cross-border counterfeit work, and trade mark prosecutions. Fielding a strong team of associates, the group also advises on patent and trade mark mandates; Jim McDonnell is the key name for technology transactions and Aaron Trebble has a niche in computer gaming law.

Practice head(s):

Leigh Martin; Richard Taylor

Other key lawyers:

Jim McDonnell; Aaron Trebble

Testimonials

‘DLA Piper has strong IP teams in Leeds, Sheffield, Birmingham and London. They are efficient, robust and insightful. They are particularly good at identifying client’s commercial goals and running litigation to ensure that they are met.’

‘Leigh Martin – is a very effective operator who always has the commercial goals of his clients in mind. He is efficient and always on top of the factual, commercial and legal issues which need to be addressed.’

‘Richard Taylor – is an impressive litigator who always gets to the bottom of the client’s commercial drivers and leads his team in an insightful and effective way.’

‘Aaron Trebble – is an impressive senior associate who manages litigation well and efficiently. He is able to manage extremely complex cases and is experienced in organising search and freezing orders.’

‘It’s been a difficult year and DLA Piper have supported us as a key supplier partner throughout on some of the largest and innovative projects. Their willingness to keep up to date and deliver on niche areas of our sector is what sets them apart from competitors. Team members have continued to be proactive in their research, advice and support.’

Key clients

Unilever Plc

Heineken UK Limited

Clinigen Plc

Globeride, Inc.

Willerbys

Portakabin Limited

GE Healthcare

Merlin Attractions Operations Limited

LivaNova Plc

Victoria Plum

IT and telecoms Tier 1

DLA Piper’s intellectual property and technology practice group has 'watertight knowledge of the industry' and handles a range of transactional mandates and complex outsourcing matters. Based out of Leeds, the group works with a number of global IT companies and is led by co-heads Amanda Pilkington in Sheffield and Mark Vipan in Leeds. Both private and public sector clients engage the team for litigation assistance, which co-heads Simon Kenyon and Richard Norman are the key names for; handling tech disputes and business-critical IT issues. Senior associate James Watson is another name of note.

Practice head(s):

Amanda Pilkington; Simon Kenyon; Richard Norman; Mark Vipan

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Dyson; James Watson

Testimonials

‘Amanda Pilkington provides a level of service that is both on point from a black letter law perspective and addresses the commercial and ‘political’ aspects of each engagement. The focus is always on a long-term successful outcome for the commercial endeavour and not on “winning” in the moment.’

‘Simon Kenyon is exceptional – utterly devoted to his clients, providing the highest quality service ’

‘Simon Kenyon is an impressive partner, providing high quality work to clients.’

‘Simon Kenyon is a hugely experienced tech litigator with a solid understanding of IT and outsourcing contracts and what goes wrong with them.’

‘Amanda Pilkington is outstandingly clear in advice and constructive criticism, with a watertight knowledge of procurement law and fabulous commercial aptitude. A joy to deal with and valuable far beyond what could normally be expected of a lawyer. ’

‘The team at DLA Piper provides an excellent service and are very customer-focused. They have a deep understanding of our key business drivers and are skilled at finding a balance between legal andcommercial risk. They see the bigger picture in terms of the benefits that successful programme delivery brings and so are keen to propose advice that protects us as a client but enables us to progress complex matters with our stakeholders.’

‘Mark Vipan has deep knowledge of our industry and the need to deliver complex change programmes in a difficult environment. Extremely approachable and personable, he is seen by our senior management team as a key contributor and sensible voice at senior governance meetings.’

‘Mark Vipan has been a trusted advisor to the organisation for a number of years and continues to provide high quality, extremely valuable advice and guidance and shows a willingness to shift from advisory to more hands on support when needed.’

Key clients

Atos

CBRE

Tata Communications

HCL

PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP

Placing Platform Limited

Provenir Inc

WNS Global Services

Manx Telecom Limited

Government of Jersey

Professional negligence: claimant Tier 1

The professional negligence team at DLA Piper is led by Leeds-based partner Adam Ibrahim. An expert in financial services litigation, he works with well-regarded consultant Hugh Evans and legal director Paul McNamee in Sheffield. Handling matters for clearing banks, accountants, international financial institutions and building societies, it counts Lloyds and PwC within its impressive client portfolio. In particular, a recent highlight was its successful defence of NatWest Markets and RBS in a purported breach of care and fraudulent misrepresentation - an order for summary judgment/strike out was secured. Senior associate Rachel Tookey is another key contact.

Practice head(s):

Adam Ibrahim

Other key lawyers:

Hugh Evans; Rachel Tookey; Paul McNamee

Property litigation Tier 1

DLA Piper's team includes the 'exceptional' Petra Billing, who is experienced in all aspects of commercial real estate litigation, particularly landlord and tenant, lease renewals, dilapidations claims and forfeiture proceedings. Billing co-heads the practice with John Kittle, who specialises in commercial landlord and tenant matters and portfolio management. Directors Peter Gardner and Rob Shaw are also highly regarded.

Practice head(s):

Petra Billing, John Kittle

Other key lawyers:

Peter Gardner; Rob Shaw

Testimonials

‘Exceptional and, in my view, unrivalled industry and sector knowledge and experience. Trusted, reliable and responsive legal advisors with a real understanding and appreciation of our business and our priorities. Advice provided is always practical and commercially focused with the appropriate level of technical detail, depending upon the recipient.’

‘The advice Petra provides is always practical and commercially focused. Petra is a trusted and highly valued adviser to our business and has been for several years now. It is always a great reassurance to know that Petra is in our corner if matters become litigated.’

‘Good at matching resources to client needs/means but without sacrificing quality of advice.’

‘John Kittle in Leeds appears extremely knowledgeable in all property litigation areas but in particular in relation to complex dilapidations disputes.’

‘One of the best teams in the country. Undoubtedly.’

‘The team has a broad and deep knowledge or property litigation and is able to pick up matters and respond very quickly. The advice is always commercially and technically sound.’

‘Petra Billing is exceptional. She is quick to get to the crux of the matter and provides concise and well-explained advice swiftly, even when subject to very tight deadlines.’

Key clients

Telereal Trillium

J.D. Sports Fashion Plc.

Sytner UK Limited.

British Airways Plc.

Aggregate Industries UK Limited (UK subsidiary of Lafarge Holcim Limited)

HS2

UPS

Transport Tier 1

The transport practice at DLA Piper has a regional focus, acting on high-profile rail, bus and airport infrastructure work for public sector and local authority clients. Robert Smith oversees the practice in Leeds and advises national clients on cross-border tenders, commercial contracts and rail regulatory matters. Co-head Petra Billing is the key name for dispute resolution mandates, specialising in property litigation. The core team also includes Ben Peecock, who advises on procurement issues. The group has a growing aviation practice and has British Airways as a key client.

Practice head(s):

Robert Smith; Petra Billing

Other key lawyers:

Ben Peecock

Key clients

Department for Transport

Merseytravel

Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM)

Tyne and Wear Passenger Transport Executive (Nexus)

Highways England

HS2 Limited

Volkerrail Limited

British Airways plc

Hitachi Rail Europe

National Air Traffic Services

Transport for Wales

Transport for the North

Voi

Gett

Urban Transport Group

South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive

Corporate tax Tier 2

At DLA Piper, the corporate tax group receives a steady stream of mandates from domestic and international clients on transactional M&A work and advise on the full range of tax services. Overseen by David Smith, who is noted for his expertise on IR35 tax legislation, the group handles employment related tax mandates. Lynda Finan is highly rated by clients and is the key name for employee incentives issues, having over three decades of experience in this field.

Practice head(s):

David Smith

Other key lawyers:

Lynda Finan

Testimonials

‘Lynda Finan is excellent and is like one of the team. Calm in a crisis and very knowledgeable. Good fun to work with.’

‘David Smith has a wealth of technical knowledge but has the ability to apply it in a practical and pragmatic manner to the reality of a commercial scenario. He is approachable and a pleasure to work with.’

Key clients

Reach plc

Greencoat Capital

Lloyds Development Capital

Robert Half Limited

Sun Capital

Tarmac Aggregates Limited

Gilead Sciences Inc

NCC Group plc

Dentsu Aegis Network

Sytner Group Limited

Education Tier 2

DLA Piper has a strong reputation among local universities and higher education institutions. It has also advised on the redevelopment of a number of the schools in conjunction with the Department for Education capital improvement project. In addition, the firm also acts for other stakeholders in the education sector, such as the United Kingdom Research and Innovation and student housing developers. Andrew Clarke, Richard Taylor, Nigel Howard and Roger Gough advise on real estate, IP, estates and commercial transactions.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Clarke

Other key lawyers:

Richard Taylor; Roger Gough; Nigel Howard

Key clients

United Kingdom Research and Innovation

University of Law

University of Sheffield

West Nottinghamshire College

The Northampton Roman Catholic Diocese Trustee

Elliott Group Limited

Department for Education

University Superannuation Fund

Insolvency and corporate recovery Tier 2

DLA Piper's 'forward thinking and proactive team' is led by Barney Smedley, who 'brings a wealth of restructuring experience across a range of sectors and deal sizes'. He often advises on debt sales, portfolio loan and asset sales, and  CVAs. James Davison and Sheffield-based legal director Susannah Dingley are of note for restructurings and corporate insolvencies.

Practice head(s):

Barney Smedley

Other key lawyers:

James Davison; Susannah Dingley

Testimonials

‘James Davison – made a big difference since joining. He has brought a stronger market focus to the team and established relationships in the PE space.’

‘Barney Smedley – brings a wealth of restructuring experience across a range of sectors and deal sizes. A strong reputation as a “problem solver” and able to apply commercial solutions to complex legal problems.’

‘Forward thinking and proactive team.’

‘Collaborative team; broad experience across a number of sectors/situations; always bring a “can do” attitude; recognises the importance of diversity & inclusion.’

‘Trust – the individuals care about their professional relationships; act with integrity and total confidentiality; never afraid to give their views and perspectives; demonstrate that they value the relationship.’

Key clients

HSBC Bank plc

National Westminster Bank Plc

Hilco Capital Limited

Deloitte

KPMG

PricewaterhouseCoopers

FRP Advisory

Lone Star Funds

Local government Tier 2

DLA Piper‘s practice, which is spread between the Leeds and Sheffield offices, focuses on transactions and projects in the transport, regeneration, housing and waste sectors. Robert Smith is well regarded for his expertise in transportation schemes; he is currently involved in bus reform projects in England and Wales, where he is acting for the Welsh Government in arrangements with all local authorities, and the Urban Transport Group in England. Paul Stone defends local government against judicial review claims concerning major public procurements.

Practice head(s):

Robert Smith

Other key lawyers:

Paul Stone

Pensions Tier 2

The pensions team at DLA Piper is active in the manufacturing and financial services sectors, advising clients on pension schemes, transactional work and scheme merger matters. Practice head Andrew McIlhinney is engaged by  clients on multi-jurisdictional M&A, GMP equalisation issues and buy-outs. He is supported by director Craig Looker, who has extensive experience advising on benefit scheme governance matters, pension funding negotiations and taxation issues. On the litigation side, David Young is the go-to partner for pensions disputes and has appeared before the Court of Appeal.

Practice head(s):

Andrew McIlhinney

Other key lawyers:

Craig Looker; David Young

Testimonials

‘ Professional, knowledgeable team who deliver as requested and on time.’

‘Responses are delivered efficiently and timeously. Able to make the client aware of any changes required.’

‘Simon Evans has a straightforward and plain speaking style which is highly appreciated by the Trustee Board. He doesn’t sit on the fence and answers questions in a way that the trustees understand. His written communication and formal advice is very thorough and well considered.’

‘DLA Piper have been legal advisers to our pension scheme since 2008 and we have never sought to change, which is remarkable in itself. DLA have a strong pensions team with a commercial approach leading to great relationships with the Trustees and their other advisers. The Trustees rely on these relationships to help us achieve the levels of scheme management and administration we strive for.’

‘Andrew McIlhinney is our lead partner for Pensions Team. He has become an integral member of the Trustees advisers who are included in Trustee meetings and continue their support to the Trustee sub-committees. Andrew is very thorough with the ability to explain legal issues in understandable terms for the Trustees.’

‘David Young was the lead partner on our case. This process took 8 years to complete during which time David’s calmness and attention to detail while seeing the whole picture kept the Trustees in front of the process while it was apparent other parties to this lagged behind.

‘The main contact has been involved with the client for many years and is able to provide focused advice.’

Key clients

Trustees of the Yorkshire Building Society

Trustees of the Leeds Building Society

Trustees of the Bibby Line Group Pension Scheme

Trustees of the Univar Pension Scheme

Trustees of the Urenco UK Pension Scheme

RR Donnelley Inc

Ardagh Glass

Arconic Manufacturing (GB) Limited

Marshalls Plc

Dr Martens Footwear

Planning Tier 2

At DLA Piper, senior associate Claire Stoneman (a ‘sound lawyer who provides excellent instructions’) is the main contact following Andrew Batterton‘s recent departure to DWF. The practice focuses on the promotion of substantial national projects in the energy, infrastructure and regeneration sectors. Its recent notable instructions included acting for Highways England on the promotion of highway improvement schemes as part of its RIS1 and RIS2 Programmes. It also advised the Department of Transport (as sponsor of the Thameslink upgrade) on securing the exercise of powers and consent on upgrades to Cambridge train station.

Practice head(s):

Claire Stoneman

Testimonials

‘Consistent delivery, on budget, transparent fees, excellent advice and very personable team.’

‘Team that we deal with are excellent professionals and all round nice people which always helps when doing business with them.’

‘DLA, in my view, have the best quality across the board outside the magic circle. They are though, prepared to deal with smaller companies with high growth potential and agree fee structures that makes it possible to instruct them. Attitude and aptitude are both first class.’

‘The DLA team is excellent in all areas of planning, but I think they have particular expertise in matters of compulsory purchase and acquisition and in infrastructure delivery. They have strong connections with the energy sector and unrivalled knowledge of that part of the planning sector.’

‘Claire Stoneman is a very sound lawyer who provides excellent instructions and support to the barristers instructed and is great to work with.’

Key clients

Welsh Government

Highways England

Department for Transport

Merlin Entertainments plc

NatWest Group Plc

Aggregate Industries

Amber REI

Brookhouse

Commercial Development Projects (Marshalls)

Aviation Tier 1

Handling the full range of litigation, transactional and regulatory work, the team at DLA Piper provides full-service advice and representation to aviation sector clients including airlines, airports and manufacturers. The coronavirus pandemic saw a marked increase in work for the commercial disputes team on multi-party litigation and arbitration matters; the team also has well-established strengths in insurance, asset finance, aviation banking and M&A. Practice leader Tony Payne is an expert on regulatory matters, while Mark Franklin and of counsel Kathryn Ward are key contacts regarding aviation liability and risk, as well as commercial disputes. Recently promoted legal director Sophie Brophy and senior associate Camilla Bonfield both specialise in aviation litigation and regulatory matters, while recently promoted legal director Tristan Thompson focuses on crisis management.

Practice head(s):

Tony Payne

Other key lawyers:

Mark Franklin; Kathryn Ward; Sophie Brophy; Camilla Bonfield; Tristan Thompson; Lucy Stevens

Testimonials

‘There is no aviation lawyer in the world quite as good as Tony Payne. We’re a global airline and we see great lawyers, but he absolutely takes first prize.’

‘Kathryn Ward has aviation litigation in her DNA. She works on sound practical solutions to her clients’ problems and is very astute to commercial aspects.’

‘Tristan Thompson is pragmatic, excellent at communicating and flagging any urgent issues that need expedited reporting. I’d highly recommend Tristan to anyone who is working in the aviation sector.’

‘Tony Payne is a determined partner who get results for his clients. Tony repeatedly goes the extra mile and invariably finds solutions to the most difficult of problems.’

‘Camilla Bonfield is a highly talented associate who holds teams together.’

‘Lucy Stevens is a rising star and one who impresses in every case.’

‘Mark Franklin is incredibly knowledgeable, has very good insight, has an extensive knowledge in aviation (both technical and regulatory), he knows, understands and anticipates the clients’ needs better than anyone. It is a real pleasure to work with Mark and his team.’

‘Camilla Bonfield and Lucy Stevens are both superstars. They think outside the box, are extremely knowledgeable and responsive and understand exactly what the needs of the business are.

Key clients

Airbus Helicopters

Allianz

AMLIN

Amazon

AXA XL

Bristow Helicopters Limited

British Airways plc

Cincinnati Global Underwriting Limited

CityJet

CV Starr

Delta Air Lines

easyJet

Emirates

Enstar

Etihad Airways

Hardy

HDI Global Specialty SE

Jet2.com

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines

Manchester Airport Group

Markel

Menzies Aviation plc

NetJets Inc

Northrop Grumman

Pratt & Whitney

Rolls Royce

Virgin Atlantic

AXA XL

United Airlines

Banking and finance Tier 1

DLA Piper regularly handles complex and high-value debt deals, tapping into its international network on cross-jurisdictional work. Recently, the team has supported corporate clients and lenders on establishing and accessing crucial Covid-19 rescue funding. Practice head Joseph Frew focuses on real estate finance work and co-leads the firm's national asset-based lending team, supported by specialised associate Alastair Carruthers. Debt finance and credit fund lawyer Matthew Christmas stands out for his private credit fund expertise, supported by associate Charles WeemsRebecca Williams, who has strength in asset finance arrangements, is praised as ‘attentive and responsive’.

Practice head(s):

Joseph Frew

Other key lawyers:

Matthew Christmas; Rebecca Williams; Alastair Carruthers; Charles Weems; Sidrah Arif

Testimonials

‘Joe Frew is our main contact at DLA and he coordinates all aspects of the financial side of our transactions, liaising with his property colleagues as appropriate to give my firm seamless support. We work on quite complex mezzanine finance development transactions and Joe has the ability to grasp intricate concepts and draft clauses to protect our position both with the borrower’s lawyers and also the lawyers of the funder providing senior debt facilities.’

‘Alastair Carruthers stood out as dedicated, commercial and fully on top of transaction and all its moving parts.’

‘My go-to individual is Rebecca Williams. I couldn’t ask for a more attentive and responsive lawyer to get deals across the line. DLA Piper also has the depth of resources in asset finance, and more generally as a major international operation to meet deadlines.’

‘I’ve worked with DLA for many years focusing on their asset based lending expertise. I find the partners and their teams exceptionally knowledgeable, helpful, commercial and sensible in their approach. They work collaboratively with us and do not take a opposing stance just for the sake of it. They are true professionals.’

‘They give you their time and their views, feel able to challenge where necessary but never make you feel inadequate.’

‘The practice have a good understanding of our documents as they do all of our banking for loans. They give helpful market information also and give excellent service. They always answer small questions very promptly.’

‘The individuals are a pleasure to deal with. Deal mainly with Matthew Christmas and Alastair Carruthers. Occasionally I have had an unreasonable rush job and they have been able to complete this for me unbelievably quickly. They are both very hard working and effective.’

‘Matt Christmas –  excellent advice, always available, leads from the front (ie doesn’t overly delegate), a trusted adviser.’

Key clients

Tosca Debt Capital

National Westminster Bank plc

INEOS

Permira Debt Managers

Pemberton Capital

Lloyds Bank

AO World Plc

Biffa Plc

Close Brothers

ABN Amro

Maslow Capital

Greater Manchester Combined Authority

Banking and finance Tier 1

DLA Piper’s Birmingham banking and finance team forms part of the firm’s wider European finance department and as such, routinely acts on high-magnitude cross-border transactions; examples include leveraged, venture and real estate finance, syndicated corporate finance and syndicated asset-based lending. Stephen Bottley is a star name locally for corporate group financings, financial sponsor-based acquisitions, growth finance and key bank documentation projects. The team benefits from formidable strength in-depth beyond partner level locally as exemplified by Gemma Rooney, an associate well-versed in real estate finance, and legal director Gemma Lawrence who demonstrates a capacity for leveraged and large corporate transactions.

Practice head(s):

Martin Bartlam; Sarah Day

Other key lawyers:

Stephen Bottley; Gemma Lawrence; Will Sherwin; Gemma Rooney

Testimonials

An extremely diverse and collaborative team. ’

‘Stephen Bottley was very accommodating. The associates on the transaction were happy to arrange several calls to discuss some of the more technical aspects to get the deal over the line.’

‘They are always keen to engage – Stephen Bottley is an outstanding lawyer. He is ably supported by Gemma Rooney. ’

‘Stephen Bottley is very well known in the Midlands market and has strong interpersonal skills and depth of knowledge in relation to both syndicated facility structures and private equity processes.’

Key clients

RPS Group plc

Clinigen Group plc

Silicon Valley Bank

CVS Group PLC

Banking litigation Tier 1

DLA Piper's 'excellent' litigation and regulatory team 'has built up a genuine specialism in regulated lending and financial services'. Stewart Plant leads the team and, according to one client, 'if you are a bank facing a high-value claim or class action this is the person to ring', particularly for retail banking and payment services disputes. Corporate crime and investigations expert John Gollaglee is the name to note for contentious regulatory issues, and legal director Philip Williams is popular among payment services and fintech clients, while legal director David Cook joined from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP adding cyber and data security expertise. Among the senior associate ranks, Krystle Robinson and Benjamin Fellows have a breadth of financial services disputes experience and Leontia McArdle excels in retail banking issues and class actions.

Practice head(s):

Stewart Plant

Other key lawyers:

John Gollaglee; Leontia McArdle; Krystle Robinson; Benjamin Fellows; Andrew Horton; David Cook; Philip Williams

Testimonials

‘Excellent financial services and banking team.’

‘The DLA Piper team are managing to steer a large portfolio of PPI cases with ease. They are always responsive and on top of the details despite their heavy workload.’

‘The team has built up a genuine specialism in regulated lending and financial services and boasts a number of heavyweight clients in the industry. Despite the pressures inherent in this field, the key individuals at DLA always remain cool and collected.’

‘The individuals go the extra mile, and also repeatedly demonstrate a brilliant balance of commercial pragmatism and in-depth knowledge of consumer credit law. Benjamin Fellows is particularly well-versed in this area, and always comes to cases with practical proposals and great ideas.’

‘Stewart Plant – If you are a bank facing a high-value claim or class action this is the person to ring. Immense experience and knows the field inside out.’

‘Stewart Plant provides targeted cost-effective and practical advice.

Andrew Horton (legal director) has seen it all and remains unfazed. His approach is always commercial.

‘Benjamin Fellows and Andrew Horton deserve a specific mention. They are tactically astute and hugely on top of the law. They are able to identify quickly the relevant issues and provide a balanced judgment on the prospects of success in any particular case.’

Key clients

The Royal Bank of Scotland Group (incl. NatWest, Lombard, RBS Invoice Finance)

The Co-operative Bank

Close Brothers Group

Elavon Financial Services

First Data Corporation

Worldpay (UK) Limited

Metro Bank

Payvision

Lloyds Banking Group (incl. HBOS and C&G)

Global Payments

NewDay Limited

National Asset Management Agency

Commercial contracts Tier 1

Fielding a substantial specialist nationwide commercial contracts team, DLA Piper is a go-to name for complex multijurisdictional commercial mandates. The group has particular expertise in the retail, consumer products, manufacturing, hospitality and leisure sectors, where it advises clients on all aspects of supply chains, alliances, partnering arrangements, service agreements, regulatory matters and licensing issues, among others. Mark Dewar leads the department and regularly handles supply chain contracts for consumer and consumer finance clients, while Sophie Lessar, who joined from Simmons & Simmons in early 2020, acts for retail financial services clients, and Chloe Forster is highly active on global mandates. At associate level, Chris Rennie regularly assists with technology sourcing matters and implementation projects.

Practice head(s):

Mark Dewar

Other key lawyers:

Sophie Lessar; Chloe Forster; Anthony Day; Stephen Wright; Chris Rennie

Testimonials

‘Exceptional quality in service provided, comprehensive understanding of the objectives of our business and extraordinary ability to work with us to help is achieve our goals.’

‘Both at partner and associate level able to understand what was being asked for, provide succinct and clear advice and to produce output that required very little modification by the business.’

Key clients

AllSaints Retail Limited

AO World plc

Burberry

Chris Stewart Group

Christian Dior Couture SA

Heineken

HIG Capital

iDirect

Kent Pharmaceuticals

Key Retirement Group

Lego Services

Levi’s Strauss & Co.

Merlin Attractions Operations Limited

Mondelez Europe GmbH

Nichols PLC

Pilkington Group

Radius Payment Solutions

Schlumberger Logelco, Inc, a Schlumberger subsidiary

ScottishPower Energy Retail Limited

Selecta TMP AG

Specialized Bicycle Components Inc.

Tesla

The Co-operative Bank

The Hut Group

The World University Insights Ltd.

Veon Ventures Ltd

Commercial litigation: Birmingham Tier 1

With 'a Rolls Royce 'City' service at West Midlands' prices', DLA Piper's commercial litigation practice is a key name to note. The group is adept at handling the full range of national and international disputes, including international arbitration proceedings. The 'excellent' Neil Bowker leads the team and acts for leading plcs and multinational businesses in a range of disputes. Other names to note include the 'brilliant and unflappable' Nicholas Bamford, who is particularly well known for handling contractual claims and allegations of financial misconduct in the hospitality and financial services sectors, and the 'ferociously hardworking' Phillip Kelly, who is noted for his 'very strong technical knowledge'.

Practice head(s):

Neil Bowker;

Other key lawyers:

Nicholas Bamford; Phillip Kelly; Laura Moorcroft;

Testimonials

‘DLA manages large, complex commercial litigation very well; they allocate appropriate resources to all aspects of the litigation and they seek to anticipate potential developments in the cases.

‘Phillip Kelly is absolutely excellent; he is diligent and extremely bright. He often notices issues that others have missed.

‘Nick Bamford is a hugely experienced and capable litigator.’

‘The DLA dispute resolution team provide a Rolls Royce ‘City’ service at West Midlands’ prices. As a result, they have a multi-national following of A List clients.’

‘The team is lead by the brilliant and unflappable Nick Bamford. A real strategist and blue sky thinker. Partner Phillip Kelly is an outstanding intellect and is ferociously hardworking. They are very ably supported by an excellent team of assistants, including Laura Moorcroft.’

‘The team combines technical strength with pragmatism and a focus on achieving commercial outcomes. The team are down to earth and enjoyable to work with.’

‘Phillip Kelly has very strong technical knowledge and is rigorous in his analysis.’

Key clients

IHG Hotels Limited

Renova Industries

Marriott Hotels

Holiday Inns Middle East Limited

Genting Casinos UK Limited

HSBC UK Bank PLC

Telereal Trillium

Reckitt Benckiser

Dyson Technology Limited

Avison Young – UK, LLP

Westland Horticulture Limited

Cycas Hospitality BV

VOV GmbH

Generali Insurance Asset Management S.p.A. SGR

Eddie Stobart Limited (ESL)

Tower Supplies

Underbelly Limited

Exidor Limited

Vinler International Limited

Harworths Estates

Commercial litigation: Manchester Tier 1

With 'superb commercial litigators', DLA Piper's Manchester team excels in M&A disputes, private equity and corporate reorganisations and has a growing reputation for contentious data protection matters. Practice head Andrew Smith focuses on corporate disputes while, for data work, the group benefits from the addition of legal director David Cook from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP. The team also attracts praise for its 'extensive knowledge of the energy sector' and counts the technology, food and retail, engineering, transport and infrastructure industries among its other sector specialisms. Jonathan Eatough is known for his 'calm, strategic approach' in a range of matters spanning technology, procurement and corporate and commercial disputes, while legal director Philip Williams and senior associate Leontia McArdle focus on corporate disputes and group litigation respectively. Senior associate Charlotte Leith's arrival from the firm's Dubai office added international arbitration expertise to the Manchester team.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Smith

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan Eatough; Philip Williams; David Cook; Leontia McArdle; Charlotte Leith

Testimonials

‘Commanding position in the Manchester market; great strength in-depth.’

‘Terrific team, would strongly recommend for expertise, very detail- and results-oriented.’

‘Superb commercial litigators: very experienced in high value litigation and arbitration, a sophisticated outfit, and a pleasure to work with.’

‘Andrew Smith (Partner)- strategic, very quick on the up-take, good fun to work with. Jonathan Eatough (Partner)- strategic, excellent commercial sense, no-nonsense. Charlotte Leith (Senior Associate) – strong analytically, good fun to work with.’

‘Jonathan Eatough – partner, calm strategic approach, rigorous, and sees the important points in a dispute. Charlotte Leith – senior associate, definitely a rising star, very thoughtful and thorough, and brilliant soft skills.’

‘Andrew Smith was our main contact, and I highly recommend him.’

‘Andrew Smith is the lead partner we have worked with who has proved to be a trusted and valuable advisor. Andrew has helped us through many complicated and difficult cases generate a high rate of success.’

Key clients

Information Commissioner’s Office

The Liverpool Football & Athletic Club Limited (LFC)

OBN Private Jet Limited

Portaltech Reply Limited

ScottishPower Energy Retail Limited

Maven Capital Partners UK LLP

GHD

Commercial property: Liverpool Tier 1

The real estate practice at DLA Piper continues to lead the market in Liverpool, expertly handling high-profile investment and development work, acting for local authorities on major regeneration schemes and retaining a prominent client base of investors in the North West markets. North West real estate head Alison Mills has notable expertise in the student accommodation sector, while key practitioner Mark Beardwood acts for universities, property developers, house builders and local authorities. Real estate investment lawyer Richard Thompson contributes his experience of working for UK pension funds as does legal director Richard Ascroft. Hugely experienced consultant Philip Rooney continues to play a key role in the team.

Practice head(s):

Alison Mills

Other key lawyers:

Mark Beardwood; Richard Thompson; Philip Rooney; Richard Ascroft

Testimonials

‘Really strong wider team with good oversight at partner level. Very commercial but always protecting their client’s position.’

‘All the team are of a very good standard. Richard Thompson leads by example but takes an interest and oversight of the rest of the instruction.’

‘A long-standing team with a huge depth of knowledge and significant resource at their disposal. The firm prides itself on diversity, which is evident in the make up of this team and general firm approach. Technology is embraced with online document management and reporting.’

‘We value the team’s open and commercial approach to all instructions, with clear advice and suggestions to simplify and speed up transactions. The whole team is approachable and Alison Mills and Richard Thompson are notable for their commitment to outperforming expectations and supporting their clients and team.’

Key clients

Universities Superannuation Scheme Limited

PGIM Real Estate

Heineken UK Limited

Downing Developments

CBRE Global Investors

LaSalle Investment Management

Schroder Real Estate Managers

Nuveen

Elan Homes Limited

Picton Capital

John Lewis Partnership Pension Fund

Liverpool Football Club

Barings Real Estate Advisers

Orchard Street Investment Management/St James’s Place UK Plc

Corporate and commercial: Birmingham Tier 1

Known for its ‘excellent transactional capabilities', the Birmingham team at DLA Piper leverages its integrated 'One UK' service model and extensive international footprint to support a broad array of local, national and cross-border M&A mandates. Noel Haywood fronts the local corporate department and is a lawyer with distinguished levels of sector expertise, notably service as global co-chair of the firm’s consumer goods, food and retail practice. The other senior partners are Charles Cook, a public and private M&A specialist who leads the national practice from Birmingham, as well as Tim Lake , who provides the group with a wealth of private equity expertise. At the more junior end, recently promoted partner Robert Newman’s strengths lie in equity capital market matters while Simon Wright is singled out as an ‘exceptional senior associate’.

Practice head(s):

Noel Haywood; Charles Cook

Other key lawyers:

Charles Cook; Tim Lake; Robert Newman; Simon Wright

Testimonials

‘A first rate team which is consistently good at delivering high quality service.’

‘Practical and easy to understand advice.’

‘Good technical team that is pragmatic and understands our business. They act local but with large firm behind them.’

‘Personable, hard-working, pragmatic and responsive team with an excellent knowledge of the UK food industry. We really enjoyed working with them and look forward to doing so again.’

‘Noel Haywood provides great knowledge and experience of UK food industry, personable and pragmatic approach, hands-on involvement, felt very much part of our team in delivering a successful outcome. ’

‘Truly exceptional quality senior associates who provides partner-quality client service and expertise at associate prices. The associates are supported by partners with detailed industry expertise and standing.

‘Simon Wright is an exception senior associate, delivering partner-quality client service and expertise. He is very commercially minded, and a problem solver; he has also demonstrated the depth of his understanding during intense negotiations.’

‘Jonathan Clarke is top-notch transactional and commercial lawyer, extremely responsive and smart. A real pleasure to work with.’

Key clients

2 Sisters Food Group

Adenia Partners

Alstom SA

Altrad

Barclays Bank PLC

BorgWarner

Brewdog Plc

Bridgestone

Bromford Industries

Chamberlin PLC

Clinigen Group plc

CVS Group plc

Darwin Group

Dechra Pharmaceuticals plc

Dignity Plc

DS Smith Plc

East End Foods Group

Ecolab, Inc.

Elan Homes

Fetim BV

Foster+Freeman

GKN

H&M Hennes & Mauritz

Hill & Smith

Huber + Suhner

Iberia Industry Capital

John Menzies Plc

Kelda Group

Knights Group plc

Lotus Bakeries

Medica Group plc

Mettis Aerospace

Mondelez

N+1 Singer

Noble Foods Group Limited

Ocean Outdoor

Omnico Group

PERI

Permira

Renesola

Rolls Royce plc

RPS Group plc

Samworth Brothers Limited

Sany Heavy Machinery

Sertec Corporation Limited

SmileDirectClub

Sodexo

Sovereign Capital Partners

Starstone Insurance Services Limited

Starwood Capital

Swissport

The Hain Celestial Group, Inc

Thomas International

Watkin Jones plc

Webjet Limited

Welsh Government

Wipro Limited

Corporate and commercial: Liverpool Tier 1

DLA Piper advises major corporates and public sector clients on transactions and commercial matters, including large-scale procurements, contracts, and cross-border deals. Sarah Bell is the key name in the Liverpool office, advising on complex commercial matters, including procurement and transactions, while national commercial head Peter Brook is another major player. Legal directors Gemma Cowap and Paddy Dwyer are noted for their leading roles on commercial work, including franchise agreements and commercial models across a variety of sectors, while senior associate Michael Hudson is an experienced transactional practitioner with expertise in M&A and private equity deals.

Practice head(s):

James Kerrigan; Sarah Bell

Other key lawyers:

Peter Brook; Gemma Cowap; Paddy Dwyer; Michael Hudson; Adam Kelly

Testimonials

‘Very strong sports and commercial practice. Efficient and proactive.’

‘Incredibly user-friendly.’

‘ Sarah Bell is easily contactable and ensures that matters that require a quick turnaround are dealt with accordingly. The advice is always clear and well-constructed and DLA are able to contextualise for those with less legal knowledge. They have colleagues who have covered other ad hoc requirements for litigation and lease matters and the work is always of a high standard. ’

‘Extremely prompt replies and great ongoing support in any matters for which support is requested. I have full trust in their advice.’

‘They have the business thinking that is needed by in-house counsel and that you do not always find in external lawyers. They are always very prompt in replies, available whenever needed. I particularly enjoy working with Adam Kelly and Paddy Dwyer.’

‘This team has been fantastic at managing a large project consisting of several procurements with several routes to market, some contracts out of scope of PCR and to add a simple yet effective tracker and risk register.’

 

Key clients

arvato Group

2Clydesdale Financial Services Ltd t/a Barclays Partner Finance

Duracell

Liverpool City Council

Liverpool Football Club

PetrolValves Srl

QA Limited

Suttons Group

UK Government (Cabinet Office, Department for Transport, Natural Environment Research Council, Department for Work and Pensions, Crown Commercial Services, Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, HMRC)

Unilever

Whirlpool

Sciontec

Newell Rubbermaid UK Services Limited

PGIM Real Estate

Corporate and commercial: Manchester Tier 1

DLA Piper has a strong profile for corporate and commercial work, advising national and international clients on M&A and private equity deals, commercial agreements and procurement contracts. Digital transformation projects in the retail and fintech sectors is another strength. The team is led by James Kerrigan, an experienced dealmaker, and commercial IT specialist Lee Brierley. An extensive senior team also includes Jonathan Watkins, who advises on complex M&A deals, Yunus Maka, who has notable expertise in cross-border transactions, private equity-focused Andrew Phillips, and 'exceptional deal counselElia Montorio, who is recognised for her broad work on M&A and private equity matters. Christopher Wilson was promoted to partner in mid-2020 in recognition of his private equity work, while director David Booth specialises in commercial projects.

Practice head(s):

James Kerrigan; Lee Brierley

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan Watkins; Yunus Maka; Elia Montorio; Andrew Phillips; Christopher Wilson; David Booth; Chris Wilson

Testimonials

‘The DLA Piper team in Manchester is an outstanding practice. They have deep bench strength in the Manchester office and seamlessly leverage partner offices as required. The team has a very deal-focused approach to transactions, in that they have practical understandings of what it takes to close the gaps between bid and ask on deals.’

‘Elia Montorio is an exceptional deal counsel and has gained a keen insight and understanding of the chemical industry. She also has a strong sense of how to effectively manage and advise private-owner clients.’

‘A highly professional team able to deliver imaginative solutions to problems. Straight forward, practical. Able to find solutions to complex problems. The team were able to effectively support us on a refinancing and an equity process whilst working remotely. All signing done electronically. ’

‘Chris Wilson is very clear and straight forward. He brings calm and assurance to complex situations. He is easy to talk to and provides helpful advice and solutions. ’

‘A senior team with first class knowledge and understanding of the market we operate in, the partners we work with and the customers whose interests we support and serve. A workforce that pulls together to support the interests of our customer base and understand how to deliver.’

‘My go to partner remains Lee Brierley. We have worked together for many years. I always value Lee.’

Key clients

ABM Industries Inc

BASF

Beech Tree Private Equity

Clariant

Talk Talk Telecom Group plc

Flowtech Fluidpower plc

Lloyds Development Capital

NCC Group plc

Nichols plc

Verna Group

Bajaj

Belstaff

Biffa Group Limited

Crown Commercial Service

Elavon

Experian

Key Retirement Group

Molson Coors

Next No

Payvision (part of ING Bank)

The Co-Operative Bank

The Hut Group

Snowdonia Cheese

2Warburtons

2Equistone Partners Europe

Wheatsheaf

Corporate tax Tier 1

At DLA Piper, the Birmingham tax practice has particular strength in the fields of real estate structuring and corporate reorganisations. Mark Burgess is extensively experienced in matters of national and international significance; he leads the firm’s international tax structuring group. Senior associate Nick Hinton is carving out a prominent reputation for his work on M&A transactions and employee incentive share option arrangements.

Practice head(s):

Mark Burgess

Other key lawyers:

Nick Hinton

Testimonials

‘Mark Burgess is a brilliant, authoritative tax lawyer who makes the complex seem simple.’

Key clients

John Lewis Partnership Pension Fund

Prologis

MKS Instruments, Inc

NatWest Group

Universities Superannuation Scheme

Dignity plc

Harrison Street

Aviva

AXA

Sytner Group

Corporate tax Tier 1

DLA Piper is a strong choice for private equity work, advising funds, portfolio companies, and investment managers on tax aspects of acquisitions, disposals, and investments, including complex cross-border arrangements. The team also acts for local and national listed and private companies. Practice head David Thompson specialises in VAT planning, and has acted in tax litigation up to the European level, and advises a broad range of clients on complex international transactional tax issues. Director Stephen Jones has strong capabilities in EU and US-domiciled work, and has broad expertise across corporate and business tax, including multinational business taxation.

Practice head(s):

David Thompson

Other key lawyers:

Stephen Jones

Testimonials

‘The team gave timely and clear advice on complex taxation and legal matters’

‘David Thompson was our contact and provided quick and easy to understand advice on complex tax matters.’

‘We are very happy with the service and advice provided by this DLA team. They have a commercial focus and understand our business and what we are trying to achieve. Advice is helpful and concise and difficult concepts are presented well.’

‘David Thompson is great and easy to talk to, available and commercial in approach. ’

 

Key clients

Beechtree Private Equity

Lloyds Development Capital

Flowtech Fluidpower plc

YM&U Group Limited (formerly James Grant Group)

LCM Partners Limited

Trupanion Inc

Talk Talk Telecom Group PLC

Employment Tier 1

DLA Piper stands out for the broad nature of its employment practice, handling TUPE transfers, tribunal disputes, reorganisations, and the employment aspects of corporate transactions. The team is adept at handling complex, sensitive issues, such as industrial relations, internal investigations, and ensuring that diversity and inclusion initiatives comply with employment law. The Manchester team frequently collaborates with the firm's offices around the globe to advise on cross-border matters such as reorganisations. Alan Chalmers leads the practice, and is frequently instructed on executive departures, whistleblowing and discrimination claims. Legal directors Helen Hall and Emma Mills and senior associate George Nicholson are also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Alan Chalmers

Other key lawyers:

Helen Hall; Emma Mills; George Nicholson

Testimonials

‘The DLA employment team is part of the wider team supporting our company. I am extremely impressed not only with the calibre of the advisors, but also with the knowledge and understanding of the specific requirements of our business. It is the combination of skills and drive to support the business in delivering its objectives that reinforces the strengths in the service.’

‘There are few employment law teams quite like DLA. They feel like old friends but in the most professional way. I’ve worked with other law firms who simply can’t translate law into practice but the DLA team understand the realities of the working world. They give practical advice, and most importantly they listen to what you need, rather than just tell you the law. They’ve adapted to remote working and in fact it’s even better ‘meeting’ over Teams given we aren’t local to DLA. The training they provide to our people managers is superb too.’

‘Emma Mills is a first class employment lawyer.’

‘Helen Hall is a brilliant lawyer. She manages clients fantastically. She is across the detail and is a pleasure to work with as part of a team.’

‘The personal touch is always there with DLA. They genuninely care about their clients and preparing them to reduce legal risk in their business. All solicitors in DLA are good, however special mentions go to Helen Hall and Jenna Clarke. Helen is exceptional at her role. She is incredibly responsive and has an incredible talent of providing practical advice. Recently Helen conducted an independent review of a complex disability and performance management case in our organisation, meeting employees that believed HR should have done more. This is not something I’ve ever done before, but it enabled our employees to understand from someone independent that the law placed high obligations on HR/the employer. Helen has many large clients, yet knows our business inside out so we always feel special. I cannot recommend Helen highly enough. Jenna Clarke is a great lawyer, with up to date case law that she uses to inform us on tribunal guidance. However, she has a talent in training people managers on basic employment law. Jenna’s delivery was highly rated by all of our people managers, yet her careful preparation, meant that she left them under no illusion of their responsibility and of the need for them to not put the business at risk.’

‘Emma Mills has demonstrated not only strong technical competence but a genuine desire to work with the in-house legal team to support it in the delivery of the mission.’

‘Helen Hall is an expert in HR law and it’s practice. She helps employers to think about the consequences of decisions longer term.’

‘They are always responsive and commercially focused to achieve the best possible outcome for their client.’

Key clients

ABB Limited

Akzo Nobel

Budweiser Brewing Group (AB InBev)

ATPI Group

Canon (UK & Europe)

Compass Minerals Group

Dixons Carphone plc

Elopak UK Limited

International Hotels Group plc (IHG)

Johnson Matthew plc

Kelly Group

Magnox Limited

Northumbrian Water Group

Reach plc

SDL Limited

Sealed Air Limited

Sodexo

Stericycle

The Co-operative Bank Limited

Verna Group International

Wave Utilities

Employment Tier 1

DLA Piper acts for numerous key local and national clients on all types of employment tribunal litigation from wrongful dismissal to complex whistleblowing and discrimination claims. It has considerable international capabilities under the leadership of the 'very good technically and commercially' Emma Phillips. The team has been involved in a number of significant multi-jurisdictional projects such as restructurings and reorganisations. Sandra Wallace is highly regarded for her work on business reorganisations, senior executive management issues and has a particular specialism in diversity issues. Other names to note include Robert Forsyth who continues to build an impressive list of US clients. Lisa Hodgson is among the primary contacts for several well-known names in the high-end retail arena.

Practice head(s):

Emma Phillips

Other key lawyers:

Sandra Wallace; Robert Forsyth; Lisa Hodgson; Matthew Jeavons; Samantha Haglington

Testimonials

‘Excellent commercial and business driven advice. Always available for discussion and responds very quickly to requests. Finds practical solutions to complex problems, mitigating risk whilst achieving what the business needs. Approachable, intelligent, commercial, practical and supportive’.

‘Over the years of working with DLA, every single one of the team has taken the time to really understand our business, and build a rapport with us. The team is extremely knowledgeable and is quick to understand the reasons for our calls, asking the right questions to get the the root of the issue. The lawyers have shown incredible adaptability in challenging situations and always appreciate the business perspective and offer innovative solutions with their advice’.

‘The team is efficient and very quick to respond to our queries, fully understanding the root of the query before offering what can be complex advice and solutions but with clear guidance in a simple to understand way. Sandra Wallace has always supported our business needs in a unique and commercially astute way and has led our team of contacts to deliver the same level of business understanding and support. Specific stand-out individuals are Robert Forsyth and Lisa Hodgson’.

‘DLA seems to provide the perfect blend between sound legal analysis and a truly commercial approach. The team is always on top of the legal strengths and weaknesses in a case, and has its eye firmly on what the best possible outcome for its clients is. Lisa Hodgson is a real delight to work with. She is approachable, responsive, legally bright, and never loses sight of achieving the best outcome for the client (whether that is in or out of Tribunal)’.

‘Matthew Jeavons is an astute litigator with an ability beyond his years and a keen sense of the needs of his clients. He is able to understand both their commercial and strategic needs within litigation and work with the other parts of the legal team to deliver an approach that is consistent with those needs and the requirements of litigation. He is sensitive to the varying demands and obligations of clients and counsel and able to manage them harmoniously. He is responsive to communications and fully engaged with any issues that need to be addressed’.

‘DLA has large teams covering a wide variety of legal matters with office locations across the globe providing a great international reach. As a global business we have operations in many different countries’.

‘DLA really takes the time to get to know our internal team and understand our business and acts as a true extension of our in-house team. It also enables the team to focus on the big picture and deliver pragmatic business solutions to complicated legal issues. Their lawyers are prepared to adopt a commercial approach when required and give us clear recommendations rather than simply laying out the options. They have excellent attention to detail and are able to tailor their advice to our specific needs and provide it in a way that can be efficiently relayed to our internal clients. They are always very responsive and able to manage tight deadlines. Sandra Wallace and Robert Forsyth have provided a lot of support recently on labour and employment issues’.

‘Emma Philips is outstanding. She knows the history of the labour matters in the company as well as I do and is always up to date with latest legal developments. The advice she provides is pragmatic. She offers several solutions to a situation, whereby her analysis supports the company to make the best decision for the company. Samantha Haglington – always friendly and responsive. Sam is commercially minded who will do all she can to get the right result for her clients. Matthew Jeavons – will go the extra mile for his clients. A fantastic associate’.

Key clients

C&J Clark International UK Limited (Clarks)

Boparan Limited (2 Sisters Food Group and Northern Foods)

Synopsys, Inc

Dyson Technology Limited

Shure UK Limited

Hilton Hotels UK Limited

Genting Casinos

Sodexo

National Grid

Lomondo Limited (Melia Hotels)

Dignity Plc No

Crawford & Company

Energy, project finance and PFI Tier 1

DLA Piper advises across a diverse range of major infrastructure, energy, and transport projects, including leading involvement in the Welsh A465 road development, which closed in 2020. The team is noted for its innovative approach to tenders and contracts, and works on a national and international basis from Manchester. Andrew S. Davies leads the team, and has a strong record in energy sector work, including waste-to-energy and nuclear developments. Liam Cowell and Lorna Pattison specialise in transport and infrastructure work respectively. Meanwhile director Ben Morton acts for funders, sponsors, and local authorities on major energy and transport infrastructure projects. Associates Lauren Fisher and Hayley Mason are credited with key roles on a number of projects, most notably the A465 development.

Practice head(s):

Andrew S. Davies

Other key lawyers:

Ben Morton; Lauren Fisher; Hayley Mason; Liam Cowell; Lorna Pattison

Testimonials

‘DLA in my view have the best quality across the board outside the magic circle. They are though prepared to deal with smaller companies with high growth potential and agree fee structures that makes it possible to instruct them. Attitude and aptitude both first class.’

‘Andrew Davies is a top lawyer. He speaks with calm and authoritative knowledge. Commercially and technically one of the best we have worked with.’

Key clients

Welsh Ministers

Tees Valley Combined Authority

Yorkshire Water Services Limited

Kelda Water Services Limited

Sellafield Limited

Renewi UK Services Limited

Vital Energi Solutions Limited

LondonEnergy  Limited

Wastefront AS

Pilkington

London Energy Limited

Aviva Public Private Finance Limited

Greater Manchester Combined Authority

Bank of Scotland Plc

Dexia Credit Local SA

Investec

Market Operator Services Limited

Orthios Group

Magnox Limited

Ambac Assurance UK Limited

Avrenim Facilities Management Limited

Fraud: civil Tier 1

Recommended for its international reach, DLA Piper is ‘very strong on Russia and CIS matters' as well as having particular expertise in Africa, the Middle East. The firm advises on a range of corporate fraud cases, notably those related to insolvency, and stand-out strengths include matters arising from the financial, energy and natural resources sectors. Litigation funding is another key area of expertise for the practice. Jean-Pierre Douglas-Henry is the global co-chair of the firm’s litigation and regulatory group, he co-leads the civil fraud team with Jamie Curle, who is experienced in multijurisdictional disputes in the banking, funds and financial services sectors, as well as in fraud and asset tracing matters; and Jeremy Andrews, who focuses on fraud and asset tracing, banking and funds litigation, contentious trusts and estates, and natural resources disputes. They are ‘surrounded by excellent junior colleagues, who enhance the offering', an example being legal director Charles Allin, who is ‘clearly an impressive up and coming lawyer.'

Practice head(s):

Jamie Curle; Jeremy Andrews; Jean-Pierre Douglas-Henry

Other key lawyers:

Charles Allin

Testimonials

‘I would single out Jeremy Andrew and Jamie Curle in London – both very experienced and always seem to be engaged in some of the leading disputes in the area. Both are super savvy and have very close understanding of the market in which they operate. They must set a high bar as they are surrounded by excellent junior colleagues, who enhance the offering’.

‘Jeremy Andrews is a highly regarded fraud litigator. Very effective and unflappable.’

‘Great experience and good value. They will work hard for their clients and put together the right team for a job.’

‘Jeremy Andrews and Jamie Curle lead the charge in this area. They have instructions from well-known UK and international entities both in litigation and arbitration. They have run complex court and arbitration claims with multi-jurisdictional issues. Jeremy is a clever man, sensitive to nuance and strategy. Jamie has excellent experience and clients love him. They are excellent to work with.’

‘International reach, very strong on Russia and CIS matters.’

‘Jeremy Andrews – highly collaborative and stategic’

‘This firm stands out as being proactive and providing intelligible pragmatic advice. That does not detract from the underlying impressive intelligence of their lawyers, but unlike many other firms they focus on solutions rather than highlighting problems.’

‘Jamie Curle is my go-to London civil fraud partner. He is highly intelligent but focused on the outcome. He does not let cute points of law stand in the way of getting a solution and the right result for the client.’

Key clients

Thomas Kalaris

Renova Industries Limited

Insolvency and corporate recovery Tier 1

Leveraging the firm’s global reach, DLA Piper‘s team is able to handle cross-jurisdictional mandates for a client list that ranges from large clearing banks and accounting firms to alternative lenders and distressed companies. The team has expertise in all aspects of restructuring and insolvency work, including contentious issues, financial restructurings and business and asset acquisitions in distressed situations. ‘Outstanding’ restructuring expert Robert Russell leads the practice and is also head of the firm’s UK restructuring team. Christopher Roberts, who has notable strength in corporate recovery, restructuring and turnaround mandates, is also a key name to watch.

Practice head(s):

Robert Russell

Other key lawyers:

Christopher Roberts

Testimonials

‘Knowledgeable and entrepreneurial.’

‘Robert Russell – outstanding.’

‘Led by Rob Russell and Chris Roberts – largest team in the North West with good experienced staff across the levels. It is a stable team so depth known.’

‘Rob Russell approaches all situations with an empathy to the client which is expressed and outworked through his team reflecting his values. Rob engages well with clients in a very natural, personable way. There is no sense of self aggrandisement but one of good sound sense being expressed by someone who knows his subject and is patient in explanation to bring all to a point of clarity on the challenge and potential next steps. I would recommend Rob without hesitation.’

‘Smart, commercial, practical, sophisticated and down-to-earth lawyers.’

‘Rob Russell is a joy to work with, he is relentless in his focus on his client’s objectives and priorities and creative in the considered solutions to be proposed.’

‘Good experienced team, actively involved in key cases involving recent legislative changes.’

‘Robert Russell has worked with me for many years now and understands the businesses and interactions well and is able to pitch his advice in a way that supports informed business decisions and solutions tailored to our businesses. His advice is not just provision of information and Rob looks to understand the underlying commercial issues beyond the pure legalities.’

Key clients

Aurelius

Close Brothers

Deloitte

Duff & Phelps

Ernst & Young LLP

Gordon Brothers Europe

HSBC Bank PLc

Lloyds Bank Plc

PWC

BDO

Opus Restructuring Limited

Insolvency and corporate recovery Tier 1

DLA Piper is instructed for matters of local, national and international significance, delivering a sector-focused service which encompasses the manufacturing, automotive, hospitality and leisure, food production, real estate and financial services industries. Huw Dolphin serves as practice head and handles an array of financial structure, reconstruction and workout matters on behalf of companies, lenders and investors; he is also regularly engaged by accountants working on restructuring assignments and is thoroughly experienced in advising boards of directors in paramount negotiations and crisis management. The other key name is recently promoted legal director Deborah Brown, a specialist in working with real assets involved in formal appointments, financial restructures and distressed business disposal.

Practice head(s):

Huw Dolphin

Other key lawyers:

Deborah Brown

Key clients

Samworth Brothers Limited

Grant Thornton

HSBC UK Bank plc

EY- Parthenon

Lloyds Banking Group

National Westminster plc

Alvarez and Marsal Europe LLP

PwC LLP

KPMG

Deloitte

Intellectual property Tier 1

With particular strength in the media, retail and hospitality industries, DLA Piper's team handles a broad portfolio of contentious and non-contentious IP matters, often involving a cross-border element. Team co-head Richard Taylor has developed a strong reputation in IP litigation, whereas fellow co-head Gareth Stokes is best known for handling licensing, exploitation, development and collaboration agreements. Satnam Sahota is another core member of the team, with a notable track record in patent litigation; he is currently representing the Premier League in High Court proceedings regarding brand protection issues. Associate Harriet Arena De La Mora is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Richard Taylor; Gareth Stokes

Other key lawyers:

Satnam Sahota; Harriet Arena De La Mora

Testimonials

‘DLA Piper has strong IP teams in Leeds, Sheffield, Birmingham and London. They are efficient, robust and insightful. They are particularly good at identifying the client’s commercial goals and using litigation to ensure that they are met.’

‘Satnam Sahota – a strong operator in the field of trade mark and passing off litigation. He manages complex litigation and disclosure exercises well.’ 

Key clients

Premier League

Iconic Labs/ Greencastle

Smile Direct Club

Medtronic

Unicef

Thomas International

Alpinestars

Syneos

UK Research & Innovation

Heineken

IT and telecoms Tier 1

DLA Piper's 'excellent team' has significant strength in cutting-edge projects across various sectors, with an emphasis on the banking, insurance, manufacturing and life sciences industries. In a recent highlight, the team advised HSBC on a risk assessment relating to the global roll out of its online financial sustainability platform, which involved a range of complex regulatory issues. Gareth Stokes maintains a busy practice, involving various technology and outsourcing matters for large national and international clients. Associate Jen Dale often advises financial services clients on major technology transactions, whereas senior associate Vipul Ladwa  stands out for his broad IT practice.

Practice head(s):

Gareth Stokes

Other key lawyers:

Jennifer Dale; Vipul Ladwa

Testimonials

‘Excellent team with great strength in depth, who have really invested in their relationship with us over several years. They now have a deep understanding of who we are and how we operate; to the extent that the relationship has become almost symbiotic.’

‘Good depth in the team – range of people to pick up work at an appropriate level as well as access to other regional and London based teams for specialist input.’

‘Gareth Stokes is exceptionally good at marshalling both legal and client teams in order to produce results, as well as being deeply sensitive to the commercial realities of contract negotiations and calm in a crisis.’ 

‘We have worked closely with Gareth Stokes and Jennifer Dale. Both have been technically excellent and very responsive, as well as pleasant to work with.’

‘The team demonstrates very good technology outsourcing expertise and a wealth of experience negotiating against technology suppliers.’

‘Gareth Stokes clearly has a firm grasp of IT outsourcing deals and IT law generally. He has provided our business with excellent counsel on a number of different projects.’

Key clients

AIB

Thomas International

GKN

Smile Direct Club

Dignity Funerals

HSBC

Karla Group

Synlab

Dyson

Medtronic

IT and telecoms Tier 1

The strength of DLA Piper’s full-service offering in  the technology and telecoms field is demonstrated by its work on leading projects, such as the rollout of Fibre to the Premises and numerous submarine cable projects. Alongside its strong transactional and regulatory work, the firm is also active in prominent TMT disputes. Kit Burden, co-chair of the firm’s global technology sector group, advises both users and suppliers of IT in relation to outsourcing and technology transactions, with a particular focus on the financial services industry. Mike Conradi, co-chair of the international telecoms practice, specialises in the regulatory aspects of major telecoms projects. Ben Forgiel-Jenkins stands out for his expertise in M&A deals involving technology and telecoms companies.

Practice head(s):

Kit Burden; Mike Conradi

Other key lawyers:

Ben Forgiel-Jenkins

Testimonials

‘We have used DLA on three major global IT procurements in as many years. On each occasion the team have impressed not only our internal legal team but also – critically – our internal stakeholders with their industry knowledge, technical competence, diligence, flexibility and willingness to go the extra mile to achieve results.’

‘This is a really strong team of individuals with fantastic depth of experience, knowledge and commercial acumen. The team are friendly, available and pragmatic. The team are respectful of the pressures within a busy in-house team and they work very hard to ensure their advice and support is practical to take forward.’

Key clients

Ministry of Defence

NHS/Connecting for Health

DEFRA

HMRC

Standard Chartered Bank

UBS

Aviva

British Airways/IAG

Heineken

HCL Technologies

Microland

Ericsson

CDW

Willis Tower Watson

Amadeus

IT and telecoms Tier 1

DLA Piper advises major national and international clients on cloud computing, complex IT and business process outsourcing and insourcing, procurements, systems integration, and digital transformation projects, with particular strength in the payments and fintech sectors, alongside cross-border work. The team is also known for its prominent public sector practice, working on significant projects in areas such as smart ticketing for transport. Sarah Bell leads the team, focusing on large-scale public and private sector procurement. Lee Brierley advises on major outsourcing and procurement projects, including smart ticketing arrangements, and Stephen Wright is noted for his financial services expertise. Legal directors Paddy Dwyer and Gemma  Cowap specialise in technology contracts and public sector procurement respectively.

Practice head(s):

Sarah Bell

Other key lawyers:

Lee Brierley; Stephen Wright; Paddy Dwyer; Peter Brook; Gemma Cowap

Testimonials

‘The team are very responsive, prompt and helpful.’

‘The main differentiation is I feel they are modern in that they cut to the chase of getting the agreement sorted whilst ensuring the job is done professionally.’

 

Key clients

AO World

Biffa Group

Bodycote

Coach House

DT Automotive Limited

Graham and Brown

Key Group

My Clever Group

Next

Nichols PLC

Orcha Health Limited

Talk Talk

The Co-operative Bank PLC

The Hut Group

Transport for the North

Transparity

Elitele.com plc

HMRC

Geant Vereniging

M&A: lower mid-market deals, £50m-£500m Tier 1

Leveraging the firm's global presence and substantial deal flow, DLA Piper's full-service London office is a key hub for a broad array of mid-market corporate deals. Led by global M&A co-chair Jon Kenworthy, the team prides itself on its cross-border, sector-based approach to transactional work. Kenworthy chiefly handles public and private M&A for clients in tech, media, and sports, while Rob Salter's focus on real estate and infrastructure sees him leading on major acquisitions and sales for major REITs. Charles Severs is well regarded by clients for his technical expertise in a variety of TMT deals. Chris Arnold focuses on financial services, consumer goods and retail. Robert Bishop is global co-chair of the corporate group and co-chairs the M&A practice.

Practice head(s):

Jon Kenworthy

Other key lawyers:

Robert Bishop; Rob Salter; Charles Severs; Chris Arnold

Testimonials

‘They are efficient and responsive. They understand our commercial objectives and get the deal over the line with the minimum amount of fuss. They take a commercial and pragmatic approach to transactions.’

‘I felt the whole of the DLA team were an excellent match for our company – down to earth, committed, flexible and very communicative. The DLA team were empowered to interact with my team at a number of different levels and throughout the service was outstanding. Innovation came through the wider approach to the transaction we were working on – a transaction with multiple strands.’

‘The entire team took total ownership of their actions – never did we feel we had to monitor progress, very reassuring. Probably most importantly from my perspective, however, was the strength of the relationships – we felt warmth to the team, we felt we were one team, we enjoyed working with the entire team.’

‘Excellent allocation of work between London and lower cost regional locations. Very commercial and good understanding of technology issues such as revenue recognition, IP ownership. Strong in negotiations and always willing to offer advice rather than just choices.’

‘Charles Severs is very strong in conflicts – always capable of finding a middle ground. Technically very strong and always willing to express an opinion.’

Key clients

Blackstone Real Estate Partners

Brookfield Asset Management

Discovery Communications

DS Smith Plc

Ecolab

Link Administration Limited

MARCOL

Merlin Entertainments

Oxford Properties

Pangaea Laboratories

Starwood Capital

Unilever Plc

VEON, Inc.

Media and entertainment (including media finance) Tier 1

DLA Piper acts for a range of clients, including international media and entertainment companies, on a broad cross-section of transactional, regulatory and contentious matters. Nick Fitzpatrick, who heads up the practice, has notable expertise in copyright issues and he counts digital broadcasting, TV, film, sport and sponsorship as particular areas of focus. Duncan Calow is sought after for advice on publishing-related matters, in addition to undertaking work in the video games, interactive content and social media spheres. John Wilks and legal director Claire Sng act for high-profile brands on sponsorship issues, data, regulatory compliance and disputes in the advertising and marketing space. Intellectual property litigator Ruth Hoy and media rights lawyer John Cloke are other key members of the practice, as is corporate partner Jonathan Earle, who joined from Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP in 2020. Legal director Oliver Kichenside and senior associate Sam Churney are also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Nick Fitzpatrick

Other key lawyers:

Duncan Calow; John Wilks; Claire Sng; Ruth Hoy; John Cloke; Jonathan Earle; Oliver Kichenside; Sam Churney

Testimonials

‘They are extremely available and helpful. I can always obtain the right assistance whenever needed.’

‘John Wilks is exceptional in terms of providing business minded support. Real pleasure to work with.’

Key clients

Discovery

LEGO

Rakuten

BPI (British Recorded Music industry) Limited

TEAM (Television Event and Media Marketing AG

World Rugby

Hilton

Springer Nature Limited

Unilever

The Football Association Premier League

Philip Morris International

Dataco

Pensions Tier 1

DLA Piper advises the trustees and sponsors of some of the UK’s largest pension schemes on matters encompassing bulk transfers, pension scheme mergers, and the establishment of new pension schemes. The practice is also frequently instructed to respond to Pension Ombudsman complaints, and additionally handles the pension aspects of transactions such as outsourcings and the acquisition of companies. The team is led from Liverpool by Ben Miller, who also serves as national head of pensions at the firm. Gary Davies is another key partner with experience in handling complex matters related to defined benefit and defined contribution schemes. Claire Bell left the firm in April 2021, joining Deloitte Legal.

Practice head(s):

Ben Miller

Other key lawyers:

Gary Davies

Testimonials

‘The DLA team have great skills in bringing to life complex matters and injecting some much needed pragmatism.’

‘Gary Davies and Ben Miller both impress me and continue to do so. They have both been a welcome support during some complex matters. Very approachable and both deliver over and above expectations.’

‘The team have a very strong team across Liverpool and Manchester. They have a very direct style and can cut through complex matters easily. They are equipped to handle challenging projects to tight timescales. The team run very high quality events and training and form an integral part of the North West market.’

‘Ben Miller is a market leading pensions lawyer with a very personable style. He is ideally placed to handle contentious and challenging matters. Gary Davies is a very strong lawyer with a very methodic and pragmatic style. He is an excellent case manager working through challenging projects.’

‘Friendly, pragmatic, and very service-orientated make this team a pleasure to work with.’

‘Ben Miller – an impressive, confident, pragmatic adviser, who has the Trustees’ back and is ready to go into battle when required. Gary Davies – A very safe pair of hands, good as distilling tricky concepts into layman terms, and enjoyable to work with.’

‘The Pensions team is very joined up and works very well together on a range of issues, as well as leveraging their internal resource on specialist matters. Their approach is practical, pragmatic and cost effective.’

‘Ben Miller has been with the firm many years and is hugely reliable in terms of knowledge. However, one trait which stands out for me is Ben’s ability to take a pragmatic approach to issues. Whilst firmly advising the scheme trustees, Ben is able to see the whole picture and take account of the supporting employer’s position. This is immensely helpful when trying to navigate sensitive or financial discussions. Ben is one of the few advisers I have met who I feel is truly trying to work FOR us and for our benefit.’

Key clients

Trustee of the Universities Superannuation Scheme

Trustees of Warburtons Pension and Life Assurance Plan

Manchester Airport Group plc (“MAG”)

Trustee of the Royal Insurance Group Pension Scheme

Trustees of the Tremco Illbruck Pension PlanYes

The Trustees of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB)Retirement and Death Benefits Scheme

The Trustees of RollalongPension Scheme

The Trustees of the Atlas Ward Pension Scheme

The Trustees of the BDP Pension Scheme

The Trustees of the Beatson Clark Pension Scheme

The Trustees of the Charles Stanley & Co Ltd RBS

The Trustees of the Greif UK Works Pension Scheme

The Trustees of the James Gibbons Pension Scheme (1981)

The Trustees of the Jenks & Cattell Engineering Limited

The Trustees of the Owens Corning Pension Plan

The Trustees of the Pension Plan of Posford Haskoning

The Trustees of the Royal Agricultural Society of England

The Trustees of the Samuel Banner Staff Pension Scheme

The Trustees of the Union of Democratic Workers

The Trustees of the Wheelabrator Pension Scheme

The Trustee of the Timpson Group plc Pension Scheme

The Trustees of Johnson Group Defined Benefit Scheme

Trustees of the Carrs Billington Agriculture Pension Scheme

Trustees of the Harvest Pension Scheme

Trustees of the Pension and Life Assurance Plan of Griffiths & Armour

Trustees of the Severfield plc Pension Scheme

The Trustees of the Weatherbys Pension and Life Assurance Scheme

PJH Group Ltd

Northumbrian Water Group Limited

Trustees of the Navigator Terminals UK Pension and Life Assurance Scheme

Lubrizol LimitedYes

Cerestar UK Pension Trust Limited

Bangor University

Arena Housing Group Pension Trustees Limited

Alpla UK Limited

Planning Tier 1

Hailed as a ‘first-class team, especially on large infrastructure projects’, DLA Piper is led by ‘one of the country’s leading planning lawyers’, Trevor Ivory. He is adept in all facets of planning law, and is primarily focused on large-scale development projects, judicial reviews and planning appeals, supported by Howard Bassford whose practice is centred around regulatory approvals for energy, infrastructure, marine and railway development schemes. At the more junior end, Amy Truman is particularly knowledge of large urban extensions, planning obligations and viability issues in the residential sector while fellow legal director Ian Graves 'offers a measured view on a number of issues'; associate solicitor Pieter Claussen is also well-versed in the management of judicial reviews and public inquiries. The practice leverages the firm’s vast international footprint to handle a variety of cross-border mandates, even counting the Government of Afghanistan among its client roster, and also specialises in overseeing the planning considerations of corporate and real estate transactions.

Practice head(s):

Trevor Ivory

Other key lawyers:

Howard Bassford; Amy Truman; Pieter Claussen; Ian Graves

Testimonials

‘Trevor Ivory and Amy Truman are very friendly and approachable individuals. It is clear that both are very knowledgeable in their areas of works and Trevor is at the top of his area of planning work. They also have the key quality to be both pragmatic and commercial.’

‘Really personable, approachable and knowledgeable; I always find I learn something from our discussions and appreciate their industry knowledge. We really enjoy working with them as a team.’

‘Howard Bassford is very much the elder statesman whose many years of experience mean that he is imbued with much wider knowledge on a number of areas relevant to infrastructure consenting.’

‘Ian Graves is a safe pair of hands and offers a measured view on a number of issues.’

‘Trevor Ivory is recognized, rightly in my view, as one of the leading planning law solicitors in the country. He is devoted to his work. Amy Truman has years of experience and her track record for success speaks for itself. Pieter Claussen is a rising star.’

‘First class team, especially on large infrastructure projects.’

‘Pieter Claussen provides sound and commercial legal advice on a range of planning law matters. He provides very high levels of client care with Trevor Ivory on-hand to provide strategic input on large and complex schemes. As such, we value Pieter and the DLA team’s input on a range of projects.’

Key clients

HS2 Limited

Department for Transport

Highways England

East West Rail Company

Mace Group

Norfolk Homes Limited

Pigeon Land Limited

Eskmuir

Moto

Altrad

Land Trust

Oval Properties

Arc Data Centres

Insite Media

Ocean Outdoor Media

Cheshire West and Chester Council

Cheyne Capital

Investec

Football Association

Busy Bees

Revelan

Socially Conscious Capital

MLN Land and Property

Taylor Wimpey

Persimmon Homes

Hopkins Homes

Government of Afghanistan

Tata Group

Aggregate Industries

Cemex

Liverpool City Council

Salesforce

This is Gravity Limited

Southend Football Club

High Speed One

Sembcorp

LaSalle/Citygrove

Aviva

Aberdeen Standard

Signature Senior Lifestyle

National Grid

Griffen

Private equity: transactions - mid-market deals (up to £250m) Tier 1

DLA Piper is highly active in the mid-market private equity space, handling buyouts, exits and investments for PE houses and management teams. The practice handles a significant volume of cross-border transactions, with its team significantly boosted by the September 2020 addition of Piero Carbone from McDermott Will & Emery UK LLP.   Tim Wright leads the practice and is praised by clients as 'commercial, pragmatic and very experienced'; frequently acting for the firm's well-known roster of buyout clients. Ed Griffiths specialises in the technology sector, while John Pryor acts for both buy-side clients and management teams.

Practice head(s):

Tim Wright

Other key lawyers:

Ed Griffiths; John Pryor; Philip Allenby; David Raff; James Kerrigan; Philip Allenby

Testimonials

‘The depth of expertise within the team is pretty much unrivalled . Clearly rising up amongst their most serious of competitors, and rightly so.’

‘Extremely experienced in commercial law and PE-backed M & A.’

‘Deep expertise, experience and resources in the sector linked with an engaging and rapid service.’

‘Tim Wright – excellent. Commercial, pragmatic and very experienced. Clearly one of the best; an excellent negotiator. Philip Allenby – up and coming. Technically excellent; clear, precise, always calm – even in the most tense of situations.’

‘Ed Griffiths is very committed and switched on and gives informed advice.’

‘David Raff is a corporate lawyer who is outstanding in negotiating and focussing on getting deals done. He’s a titanium fist in a velvet glove.’

Key clients

Beech Tree Private Equity

Bregal Milestone

Duke Street Capital

EMK Capital

Carlyle

H.I.G. European Capital Partners

Inflexion Private Equity Partners

Lloyds Development Capital

Ascot Lloyd management

Intermediate Capital Group

AcolinHolding AG management team

EQT Ventures

Retail and consumer Tier 1

Noted for its vast global footprint and its close relationships with key industry bodies, DLA Piper places a premium on major strategic and business-critical transactions with multi-jurisdictional dimensions. The full-service, ‘extremely collaborative’ team's offering encompasses the full gamut of legal services, including M&A, commercial issues, litigation, real estate and IP.  Brands expert Ruth Hoy sits as the international head of the retail group, international supply chain specialist Mark Dewar is responsible for leading the international consumer goods practice, Birmingham-based Noel Haywood steers the global consumer goods, food and retail team, while ‘excellent technical lawyerChloe Forster fronts the group’s UK consumer goods, food and retail subgroup. Fintech expert Sophie Lessar joined from Simmons & Simmons in June 2020, while restructuring lawyer James Davison, who has a sizable retail sector client base, joined from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP a month later.

Practice head(s):

Ruth Hoy; Mark Dewar; Noel Haywood; Chloe Forster

Other key lawyers:

Susan Samuel

Testimonials

Client friendly, commercial, pragmatic, easy to work with and tech-forward. Excellent offerings for in-house training, great accessible and interactive guides for complex areas of law.’

As well as being an excellent technical lawyer, Chloe Forster is always accessible and is a great link to the rest of the firm. Her team has worked with us on a virtual secondment basis so they really understand our business. I’ve been working with Chloe since she was an associate at DLA and I was very pleased to see her promoted to partnership. It gives me confidence that DLA is investing in the right people.’

I find the people I work with at DLA extremely collaborative. In particular, I rely on DLA heavily in foreign markets where our in-house team doesn’t have a presence.’

DLA Piper’s commitment to helping emerging fashion businesses achieve tangible results is truly valued.’

Ruth Hoy and Chloe Forster have been our key contacts at DLA Piper for years. They genuinely care for our industry and the best quality in them is their continued dedication to helping emerging businesses which, otherwise, would hardly have the means or tools to look into the legal side of running a business.’

Key clients

Nike Inc.

H & M Hennes & Mauritz B.V. & Co. KG

Mothercare plc

The Hut Group Limited

C & J Clark International Limited

Kering SA

PRADA Germany GmbH

Levi Strauss & Co.

The Carphone Warehouse Ltd

ALPINESTARS S.p.A.

Valentino SpA.

Rocca S.p.A.

Domino’s Pizza Enterprises Limited

Lloyds Pharmacy Limited

Deckers Outdoor Corporation

AllSaints

River Island

Arcadia

LVMH Fashion Group France SNC

Superdry Plc

Unilever

Heineken

AO World plc

The Department for Business Enterprise Innovation and Skills (BIS) and the Office of Product Safety and Standards (OPSS)

Specialized Bicycle Components Inc,

Transport Tier 1

DLA Piper is heavily involved in transport and infrastructure projects, with its multidisciplinary team acting for public and private sector clients on matters related to air, rail, road and shipping transportation. The practice has a strong record in construction claims and PFI/PPP disputes. In addition, other areas of activity concern asset finance, IT procurement, outsourcing and smart ticketing. Team head Liam Cowell concentrates on infrastructure and project finance transactions, and has extensive experience of handling complex and innovative projects. David Moss is now a consultant.

Practice head(s):

Liam Cowell

Other key lawyers:

Paul Giles; Alan Cunningham; Lee Brierley; Rebecca Williams; David Moss

Testimonials

‘Good solid performers all round. Paul Giles, the construction partner, is hugely experienced and very savvy.’

‘The team understand public sector transport issues. They understand how a public sector organisation moves and the need for governance.’

Key clients

Welsh Ministers

Transport for the North (“TfN”)

Vinci Concessions, Vinci Highways, Implenia Schweiz AG

Transport for Greater Manchester

Highways England

All Best Financial Limited

Asset based lending Tier 2

Drawing upon the expertise of London, Leeds and Manchester-based practitioners possessing significant transactional, restructuring and litigation-related ABL knowledge, DLA Piper's multi-disciplinary work in the space ensures that it is able to provide a 'commercial and flexible' service to lenders and borrowers, both at the front end of deals, as well as in any distressed scenarios. Although it can leverage expertise across its international offices on cross-border deals, should the need arise, the 'responsive and knowledgeable' team is undoubtedly most visible in the domestic mid-market, an area from which it receives significant deal flow from its extensive and well-established ties with clearing banks and independent ABL providers, in particular. Splitting her time between Leeds and London, Sarah Day is very visible in the market, combining her core ABL transactional focus with a broader knowledge across numerous other financing techniques to ensure both borrowers and lenders receive the most appropriate structures for their individual needs. 'Very commercial' Manchester-based partner Joseph Frew co-heads the team alongside Day, and as well as his versatile transactional offering for both funders and borrowers, is also regularly instructed by lenders to assist on the drafting and development of template documentation for ABL facilities.

Practice head(s):

Sarah Day; Joseph Frew

Other key lawyers:

Stephen Bottley; Chris Roberts; Neil Riley; Richard Usher; Peter Manley; Alastair Carruthers; Charlotte Woodfield; Rob Lyons; Charlotte Smith; Rachel Holt

Testimonials

The team is very responsive and knowledgeable.’

The team is commercial, flexible and able to think outside-the-box to provide innovative solutions.’

Joe Frew has built a strong reputation as a sound and strong negotiator, very commercial but also very hands on, which is helpful when negotiating complex structures.’

Key clients

ABN Amro Commercial Finance

Aldermore Invoice Finance

BNP Paribas Commercial Finance

Lloyds

Close Invoice Finance

RBS Invoice Finance

Deutsche Bank

HSBC Invoice Finance

Shawbrook Bank Business Credit

Siemens Financial Services

ING Commercial Finance

Sonovate

Bibby Financial Services

Coöperatieve Rabobank U.A.

NatWest

Trade and Development Bank

AIG Europe S.A.

Almastone

HSBC plc

ING Wholesale Banking

Payoneer

Commercial litigation: Liverpool Tier 2

DLA Piper represents local and national clients in complex, high-value litigation relating to commercial contracts, financial disputes, and cross-border issues, with notable capabilities in international arbitration and litigation. Clients include major sports, aerospace, and education companies. The team is overseen by North West litigation head Andrew Smith and senior Liverpool team member Christina Sharma, a director with broad expertise across domestic and international proceedings relating to shareholder and partnership disputes, contracts and procurement, and civil fraud. David Cook joined from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP in early 2020, and specialises in data protection disputes arising from GDPR.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Smith; Christina Sharma

Other key lawyers:

David Cook

Key clients

The Liverpool Football & Athletic Grounds Limited

OBN Private Jet Limited

Portaltech Reply Limited

Underbelly Limited

University Superannuation Scheme (USS)

Alexander Dennis Limited (ADL)

Commercial property: corporate occupiers Tier 2

DLA Piper can draw on resources from its significant network of offices, both nationally and internationally, fielding an ‘exceptional’ commercial property practice which serves as a one-stop shop for substantial development schemes. Jonathan Northey and associate Hayley Russell-White thrive at each stage of the project pipeline, including site acquisition, forward funding and land assembly; Northey is principally adept in housing and mixed-use schemes though the overall team also enjoys an excellent reputation for complex living, office, pharmaceutical and logistics ventures. The investment offering was recently bolstered by the arrival of Bonnie Calnan, former practice co-head of Dentons, and is fronted by William Naunton caters to a range of fund managers and institutional investors with extensive portfolios, providing particular expertise in joint ventures and structured transactions. The firm is also home to a dedicated corporate occupier practice which is led by Paul Jayson, an expert in sustainability strategies who also fronts the firm’s green real estate team. Senior associate Nicholas Haringman is also active in the leasing space and has recently acted on headquarter relocations, office openings and lease portfolio restructurings.

Practice head(s):

Paul Jayson

Other key lawyers:

Nicholas Haringman

Testimonials

‘A multidisciplinary, commercially minded law firm – they provide accurate advice on important issues whilst not trying to point-score with the counterparty. The team includes a huge range of down-to-earth people, who are likeable and clearly enjoy working with the company. They introduced us to property tech which has hugely helped us track and manage our asset management initiatives.’

‘Lorraine Reader is the spearhead of our legal team; unflappable honest advice from a superb team leader. Andrew Walker focuses on the material issues; he is a future partner in the making in my opinion.’

‘The practice has a broad church of services available that are required for a large corporate business, from landlord & tenant, litigation, planning and construction.  In addition, it can when needed, pull on colleagues to cover such issues as environmental legislation, domestic residential, etc.’

‘DLA provides exceptional, relevant and highly practical and reliable advice. They are incredibly responsive. They have shown great flexibility in interfacing with our internal case management system. The team at DLA feels like an extension of our internal teams and all advisers are highly respected and trusted. They have a great commercial understanding and awareness and this is reflected in their approach, which is tailored and proportionate to the commercial reality and risks of each situation. We rely on DLA for transactional, advisory and litigation support.’

‘I have worked with various members of the team and they are first-class. They all seem very knowledgeable, commercial and efficient. It is always a pleasure to work with them.’

‘George Burrha – a talented and personable lawyer who keeps a cool head in all situations to seek out solutions.’

‘The support provided is always calm, methodical and practical – they seek to find commercially appropriate solutions rather than scoring points.’

Key clients

ExCel London

British Airways Plc

Lego Company Limited

Pfizer

Mothercare Global Brand

Tata Steel UK Limited

Heineken UK Limited

NatWest Group Plc

University of Sheffield

ITM Power (Trading) Limited

Wavin (Orbia)

Commercial property: development Tier 2

DLA PiperDLA Piper can draw on resources from its significant network of offices, both nationally and internationally, fielding an ‘exceptional’ commercial property practice which serves as a one-stop shop for substantial development schemes. Jonathan Northey and associate Hayley Russell-White thrive at each stage of the project pipeline, including site acquisition, forward funding and land assembly; Northey is principally adept in housing and mixed-use schemes though the overall team also enjoys an excellent reputation for complex living, office, pharmaceutical and logistics ventures. The investment offering was recently bolstered by the arrival of Bonnie Calnan, former practice co-head of Dentons, and is fronted by William Naunton caters to a range of fund managers and institutional investors with extensive portfolios, providing particular expertise in joint ventures and structured transactions. The firm is also home to a dedicated corporate occupier practice which is led by Paul Jayson, an expert in sustainability strategies who also fronts the firm’s green real estate team. Senior associate Nicholas Haringman is also active in the leasing space and has recently acted on headquarter relocations, office openings and lease portfolio restructurings.

Practice head(s):

Jonathan Northey

Other key lawyers:

Hayley Russell-White; Paul Jayson; Rob O’Hanrahan; Paul Dineen; George Burrha; Omer Maroof

Testimonials

‘A multidisciplinary, commercially minded law firm – they provide accurate advice on important issues whilst not trying to point-score with the counterparty. The team includes a huge range of down-to-earth people, who are likeable and clearly enjoy working with the company. They introduced us to property tech which has hugely helped us track and manage our asset management initiatives.’

‘Lorraine Reader is the spearhead of our legal team; unflappable honest advice from a superb team leader. Andrew Walker focuses on the material issues; he is a future partner in the making in my opinion.’

‘The practice has a broad church of services available that are required for a large corporate business, from landlord & tenant, litigation, planning and construction.  In addition, it can when needed, pull on colleagues to cover such issues as environmental legislation, domestic residential, etc.’

‘DLA provides exceptional, relevant and highly practical and reliable advice. They are incredibly responsive. They have shown great flexibility in interfacing with our internal case management system. The team at DLA feels like an extension of our internal teams and all advisers are highly respected and trusted. They have a great commercial understanding and awareness and this is reflected in their approach, which is tailored and proportionate to the commercial reality and risks of each situation. We rely on DLA for transactional, advisory and litigation support.’

‘I have worked with various members of the team and they are first-class. They all seem very knowledgeable, commercial and efficient. It is always a pleasure to work with them.’

‘George Burrha – a talented and personable lawyer who keeps a cool head in all situations to seek out solutions.’

‘The support provided is always calm, methodical and practical – they seek to find commercially appropriate solutions rather than scoring points.’

Key clients

Mace Developments

This is Gravity

World Wheel Company

Edyn Group

Far East Consortium (FEC)

Prologis

Southend United Football Club

Hadley Property Group

PGIM

Commercial property: investment Tier 2

DLA PiperDLA Piper can draw on resources from its significant network of offices, both nationally and internationally, fielding an ‘exceptional’ commercial property practice which serves as a one-stop shop for substantial development schemes. Jonathan Northey and associate Hayley Russell-White thrive at each stage of the project pipeline, including site acquisition, forward funding and land assembly; Northey is principally adept in housing and mixed-use schemes though the overall team also enjoys an excellent reputation for complex living, office, pharmaceutical and logistics ventures. The investment offering was recently bolstered by the arrival of Bonnie Calnan, former practice co-head of Dentons, and is fronted by William Naunton caters to a range of fund managers and institutional investors with extensive portfolios, providing particular expertise in joint ventures and structured transactions. The firm is also home to a dedicated corporate occupier practice which is led by Paul Jayson, an expert in sustainability strategies who also fronts the firm’s green real estate team. Senior associate Nicholas Haringman is also active in the leasing space and has recently acted on headquarter relocations, office openings and lease portfolio restructurings.

Practice head(s):

William Naunton

Other key lawyers:

Joanne Owen; Omer Maroof; Lorraine Reader; Bonnie Calnan

Testimonials

‘A multidisciplinary, commercially minded law firm – they provide accurate advice on important issues whilst not trying to point-score with the counterparty. The team includes a huge range of down-to-earth people, who are likeable and clearly enjoy working with the company. They introduced us to property tech which has hugely helped us track and manage our asset management initiatives.’

‘Lorraine Reader is the spearhead of our legal team; unflappable honest advice from a superb team leader. Andrew Walker focuses on the material issues; he is a future partner in the making in my opinion.’

‘The practice has a broad church of services available that are required for a large corporate business, from landlord & tenant, litigation, planning and construction.  In addition, it can when needed, pull on colleagues to cover such issues as environmental legislation, domestic residential, etc.’

‘DLA provides exceptional, relevant and highly practical and reliable advice. They are incredibly responsive. They have shown great flexibility in interfacing with our internal case management system. The team at DLA feels like an extension of our internal teams and all advisers are highly respected and trusted. They have a great commercial understanding and awareness and this is reflected in their approach, which is tailored and proportionate to the commercial reality and risks of each situation. We rely on DLA for transactional, advisory and litigation support.’

‘I have worked with various members of the team and they are first-class. They all seem very knowledgeable, commercial and efficient. It is always a pleasure to work with them.’

‘George Burrha – a talented and personable lawyer who keeps a cool head in all situations to seek out solutions.’

‘The support provided is always calm, methodical and practical – they seek to find commercially appropriate solutions rather than scoring points.’

Key clients

AXA

La Salle Investment Management

Harrison Street Real Estate

Mace Developments

Barings Real Estate

ProLogis

Shaftesbury plc

PGIM

Hines

Oval Real Estate

Commercial property: Manchester Tier 2

Noted for its strengths in development and investment work DLA Piper  handles a range of high-value and often cross-jurisdictional transactions, drawing on the firm's international network. The practice is also building a strong focus on the logistics, build to rent, care home and flex office sectors. Liverpool and Manchester-based practitioner Alison Mills leads the team, while Mark Beardwood, who also splits his time between both offices, continues to be a name of renown in commercial property. Tom Kelsall, who has particular expertise in real estate finance, plays a leading role in the practice.

Practice head(s):

Alison Mills

Other key lawyers:

Mark Beardwood; Tom Kelsall

Testimonials

‘Tom Kelsall provides exceptional service. He went the extra mile in 2020 in challenging circumstances, juggling work amongst some domestic responsibilities.’

Key clients

Universities Superannuation Scheme Limited

PGIM Real Estate

Heineken UK Limited

Downing Developments

Elite Partners Capital

CBRE Global Investors

LaSalle Investment Management

Schroder Real Estate Managers

Maslow Capital

Nuveen

Elan Homes Limited

Toys R Us Properties (UK) Limited (in LPA receivership)

John Lewis Partnership Pension Fund

Capital & Centric

Barings Real Estate Advisers

Orchard Street Investment Management/St James’s Place UK Plc

Transport for Greater Manchester

Greater Manchester Pension Fund

Greater Manchester Combined Authority

Beaufort Capital

Cheshire West and Chester Borough Council

Amstone Developments Limited

4th Industrial Limited

Envivo Group

Room 2 Hometels

Elite Logistics Fund

Elite Commercial REIT

Construction Tier 2

DLA Piper’s contentious practice is focused on PFI/PPP disputes, as well as UK and international construction disputes, particularly related to engineering projects. On the non-contentious side, the team assists on major development schemes. Paul Giles heads the ‘very strong, tightly-knit team’, with particular expertise in high-stakes national and cross-jurisdictional disputes in the  energy, utilities and infrastructure sectors, while Alison Fagan is known for her considerable experience in PPP/PFI projects and disputes. Eminent practitioner David Moss supports the team as a consultant. The DLA Piper Project Simulator, an interactive training tool which helps clients to better understand business and stakeholder independencies, further strengthens the practice.

Practice head(s):

Paul Giles

Other key lawyers:

Alison Fagan; David Moss

Testimonials

‘A very strong, tightly-knit team. A pleasure to work with.’

‘Alison Fagan runs her team very effectively.’

‘A solid, well-structured team which is competent at all levels and provides a balanced approach to work, with matters being handled at the right level with appropriate oversight.’

‘The depth of knowledge is impressive and the team is a one-stop shop for construction disputes.’

‘Robust legal advice with a wide variety of sector experience. Flexible approach to ways of working and take time to know their client. Reliable and responsive.’

‘Specialists in PFI disputes and strong on disputes relating to defects generally.’

‘DLA’s team are young and dynamic and enjoy offering innovative solutions to their clients, including introducing the Project Simulator online platform. The team and the firm appear to be on top of digitalisation and technology and investing in research regarding how to serve clients best.’

‘A committed and excellent team, who are knowledgeable from a legal perspective but also go above and beyond in terms of subject matter and understanding of the broader implications of the project.’

Construction: contentious Tier 2

DLA Piper's 'extremely able' and 'very experienced' contentious construction practice offers its clients support in large-scale infrastructure disputes both domestically and internationally. The team is known for its expertise in acting for contractors, investors and procurers in PFI and PPP disputes. Beyond that, the firm offers a strong energy practice to assist with matters concerning both petrochemical and renewable projects. Paul Giles leads the practice from Manchester, while Bob Maynard and Caroline Pope, both of whom offer experience in utilities, PFI and nuclear related disputes, further strengthen the team. Edward Shaw and Anna Mills are also recommended for their respective expertise in infrastructure and energy disputes.

Practice head(s):

Paul Giles

Other key lawyers:

Bob Maynard; Caroline Pope; Edward Shaw; Anna Mills

Testimonials

‘The team is responsive and attentive to the client’s needs, and experienced in dealing with a diverse range of domestic and international clientele. They have depth of experience so are one of the few firms that are excellent at litigation, arbitration and appellate work.’

‘Edward Shaw has the ability to identify the key issues and gets straight to the point.’

‘The DLA Piper team is highly integrated, extremely able, immensely hardworking, pragmatic and very experienced.’

‘A team that demonstrates good knowledge and understanding at all levels of engagement.’

‘Strong team with proactive members.’

‘Anna Mills is absolutely excellent. She is immensely hardworking, very bright, dedicated to her clients, pragmatic and very easy to work with – a first-rate solicitor.’

‘DLA are the best at cost control and matter management that I’ve seen.’

‘Excellent leadership, understanding of the wider project dynamics.’

Key clients

Erith Contractors Limited

Carilion Construction

Customs and excise Tier 2

DLA Piper advises on all aspects of international trade law and has extensive experience and knowledge of customs and excise matters. The team is led by John Forrest, who is an international trade and customs specialist, while Richard Woolich heads up the UK tax practice and has particular expertise in UK and cross-border VAT issues. Paul Hardy leads the work involving Brexit and has a background working in the European Commission in Brussels. Legal director Chloe Barker is also noted and advises clients on trade compliance issues, in particular compliance with EU and UK customs requirements, sanctions and export control restrictions.

Practice head(s):

John Forrest; Richard Woolich

Other key lawyers:

Paul Hardy; Chloe Barker

Key clients

CCS Trade Law Panel

Passport Global Inc

Kentucky Fried Chicken (Great Britain) Ltd

International Consolidated Airlines Group S.A

Anixter

Tokyo Electron

Brisko Scaffolding Limited

Deckers Group

Prysmian Powerlink SRL

Circor International, Inc

Heineken

Sykes Seafood Limited

Newell Rubbermaid UK Services Limited

Highlander Partners, L.P.

Data protection, privacy and cybersecurity Tier 2

DLA Piper is ‘exceptional in its ability to understand technically and operationally complex issues’. The practice acts for both private and public sector clients, including government departments and large international financial institutions, and handles a number of multi-jurisdictional data compliance programmes, cyber-attacks and litigation. Ross McKean co-heads the practice alongside Andrew Dyson; McKean is recommended for global data governance, information security and breach response issues, and Dyson handles advisory matters, engagements with regulators and cybersecurity mandates. David Cook, who joined as legal director from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP in March 2020, brings with him regulatory, civil and criminal litigation experience.

Practice head(s):

Ross McKean; Andrew Dyson

Other key lawyers:

David Cook

Testimonials

‘Clear, robust and pragmatic advice on the most serious events and issues’. 

‘Their thought leadership is recognised across the industry and the firm is sought out by leading financial institutions and leading cyber firms’.       

‘Ross McKean is a star lawyer and the first port of call if the challenge is large or complex’.

‘Andrew Dyson is unflappable, easy to deal with, commercial and pragmatic, well connected and always available’.

‘DLA have large teams covering a wide variety of legal matters with office locations across the globe providing great international reach’.

‘As a global business we have operations in many different countries and DLA’s breadth and depth of expertise means they are able to support us on a range of issues and cover all of our requirements for external legal support’.

‘DLA have a diverse client base and the team have a really good knowledge and understanding of many different industries and sectors, which is invaluable when it comes to navigating industry wide issues’.

‘Their lawyers are technically first class and their advice and guidance is always on point’.

Key clients

Chubb Insurance Group SE

NHS Test & Trace

Visa Europe Limited

Dell

Zurich

Deloitte

Reckitt Benckiser

Marriott Vacations

Department for Digital Culture Media and Sport (DCMS)

The Hut Group

Employee share schemes Tier 2

DLA Piper has made significant strides in growing its share schemes practice in recent years, with team head Nick Hipwell joining in 2019 and legal director Martin MacLeod arriving in 2020, both of which arrived from Deloitte. The team’s workload covers a range of sectors including financial services, insurance, technology, professional services and manufacturing. The group’s international work is particularly extensive, with a recent matter for one client covering 14 different jurisdictions. Recent matters have involved advising on M&A transactions, creating bespoke incentive plans and dealing with employment trusts. Natwest and Swiss Re are key clients.

Practice head(s):

Nick Hipwell

Other key lawyers:

Martin MacLeod

Testimonials

‘DLA’s share scheme team is growing from a small base. I’m aware they are introducing a number of technology tools to support global reporting and management of share schemes. Director on the team is very responsive, technically competent and give sound practical advice.’

‘Good clear advice stay away from the legal jargon and explain it in plain English.’

Equity capital markets – small-mid cap Tier 2

DLA Piper strengthened its ranks in 2020 by hiring corporate partner Jonathan Earle (who has significant experience in acting for public companies) and New York-qualified counsel John Stone from Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher and Linklaters LLP respectively; Robert Newman also made partner. The EMEA capital markets practice is led by Alex Tamlyn, who has more than 30 years of experience in acting for clients on domestic and cross-border securities offerings and is Chair of the London Stock Exchange Primary Markets Group. The broader team handles a myriad of complex matters, including AIM and Main Market IPOs, rights, issuances and block trades. In addition, public M&A and demergers are other drivers of work. Recent highlights included Tamlyn, Martin Penn and recently promoted legal director Karin Kirschner advising Mothercare on its move from the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange to AIM; the team also assisted Learning Technologies Group Plc with an £81.8m equity placing.

Practice head(s):

Alex Tamlyn

Other key lawyers:

Martin Penn; Charles Severs; Robert Newman; Karin Kirschner; John Stone; Johannes Poon; Jonathan Earle

Testimonials

The access to highly experienced partners who can construct wider teams suited to our business.’

The outstanding knowledge and experience of the senior partner on our account, bringing unique approaches which played a very key part in a successful transaction being achieved.’

Flexibility around our ever changing timetables.’

Karin Kirschner in particular is an absolute star. She understands our business and it felt as if she was an extension to us during the transaction, engaging with various stakeholders whilst emitting the softer skills to us as a client.’

Key clients

Accesso Technology Group plc

Allied Minds plc

Aptitude Software Group plc

Canaccord Genuity Limited

Chamberlin plc

Clinigen Group plc

CVS Group plc

Dechra Pharmaceuticals plc

Dignity Funerals plc

Hutchison China Meditech

Hyve Group plc

John Menzies plc

Knights Group Holdings plc

Learning Technologies Group plc

Medica Group plc

Mothercare plc

N+1 Singer Capital Markets Limited

Numis Securities Limited

Peel Hunt LLP

PureTech Health plc

RPS Group plc

Scapa Group plc

Staffline Group plc

EU and competition: trade, WTO anti-dumping and customs Tier 2

Under the leadership of John Forrest, DLA Piper's growing trade team has extensive expertise in export control, sanctions and customs and WTO work. In 2021, the firm was one of the few to be appointed to the UK government's new trade law panel, and will be advising the government on both WTO disputes and trade negotiations. Paul Hardy is the firm's dedicated Brexit expert, and has been working with businesses, public sector bodies and States to influence UK-EU partnership negotiations and utilise existing EU trade deals. Beyond partner level, Chloe Barker was promoted to legal director in May 2020 and advises foreign governments on negotiations with the European Union.

Practice head(s):

John Forrest

Other key lawyers:

Paul Hardy; Chloe Barker; Daniel Jones; Rupert Ekblom

Key clients

UK Government Trade Law Panel

International Consolidated Airlines Group S.A.

Kentucky Fried Chicken (Great Britain) Ltd

Anixter Limited

Tokyo Electron Europe Ltd

Brisko Scaffolding Limited

Coca Cola European Refreshments

Heineken

Circor International, Inc

The University of Sheffield

Fintech Tier 2

The fintech team at DLA Piper handles a broad range of mandates for its clients, such as assistance with strategic projects, regulatory advice, financing and seed investments. Its cross-practice approach sees the firm act for banks and challenger banks, private equity and venture capital investors, asset managers, and trading platforms and exchanges. Martin Bartlam has expertise in technology solutions for new and traditional funding structures, while Anthony Day handles outsourcing and transformation projects. Bartlam and Day jointly lead the practice with Bryony Widdup, who is recommended for funding work. In 2020, Sophie Lessar joined from Simmons & Simmons, and in another key development, legal director David Cook was hired from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP.

Practice head(s):

Martin Bartlam; Anthony Day; Bryony Widdup

Other key lawyers:

David Cook; Sophie Lessar

Testimonials

‘The DLA team are incredibly knowledgeable in this fast moving area, especially around regulation which is constantly evolving.’

‘I work with both Bryony Widdup and Martin Bartlam, both are excellent advocates for sensible regulation in fintech and digital Assets and their intelligence, knowledge and commitment helps bring clarity to an often misunderstood area.’

Key clients

ING Bank N.V.

Archax Limited

EQT Ventures

Eldridge

Athora

Willis Towers Watson

Fund finance Tier 2

DLA Piper, which undertakes lender and borrower-side work, acts for clients such as fund managers, investment banks, investors and alternative credit providers. The team is led by Bryony Widdup, who has expertise in structured and non-structured lending, including hybrid, capital call and NAV facilities, as well as securitisation, structured note products and equity commitments. Paul Gray focuses on structured finance and real estate transactions, as well as leveraged loan restructuring. Associate Mariel Luna focuses on borrower-side advice, particularly cross-border syndicated and bilateral NAV facilities, hybrid lending and co-investment deals.

Practice head(s):

Bryony Widdup

Other key lawyers:

Paul Gray; Mariel Luna

Testimonials

‘The DLA team has a good understanding of the fund finance product and investment fund structuring which assists with negotiations and commercial terms.’

The fund finance team led by Bryony Widdup are excellent. They always look after their clients’ best interests whilst taking a pragmatic approach to transactions. Their legal and commercial expertise are outstanding. ‘

‘Bryony Widdup is exceptional as a partner together with her associate Mariel Luna. Their expertise is top level and dedication to clients second to none.’

Health and safety Tier 2

Well-regarded for its contentious and non-contentious offering, the health and safety team at DLA Piper features a trio of individuals at the helm; Teresa Hitchcock heads the firm's UK Safety, Health and Environment team alongside Jean-Pierre Douglas-Henry and Neil Bowker   The team has a growing manufacturing and construction related practice that encompasses compliance, due diligence, and regulatory investigations/prosecution. Trusted advisers to many well known corporates, the firm uses  machine learning platform Kira, for large collections of documents. Alastair Clough is a key person in the team, and leads on safety, health and environment transactional related matters. Ailish Oxenforth  is also highly recommended, with recent instructions supporting numerous clients in COVID-19 related health and safety issues.

Practice head(s):

Teresa Hitchcock; Neil Bowker; Jean-Pierre Douglas-Henry

Other key lawyers:

John Gollaglee; Ailish Oxenforth; Alistair Clough

Testimonials

‘The provision by this practice during COVID-19 has been truly excellent. Managing tight turnaround periods for comprehensive and often complex advice was a big ask, but it was always dealt with in a highly professional and reassuringly slick way. 

‘Teresa Hitchcock has been an absolute lynchpin for us over the last 15 months and her reliable, comprehensive and rounded approach to advice is something that we have come to rely upon.’

‘Always professional, always keeping the client at the centre and able to call in other practices if needed. They aim to be understood and to make the matter clear.’

Key clients

Arconic Corporation

SMG Europe Holdings Limited No

VolkerRail Limited No

Brother Industries UK Limited No

Axa Real Estate Investment Managers UK Ltd Yes

Reckitt Benckiser Healthcare UK Limited

Hospitality and leisure Tier 2

DLA Piper's hospitality and leisure group acts for owners, investors, operators and financial institutions. The firm's global reach means that the practice is well-equipped to handle complex cross-border transactions in the hotels space, and regularly takes on portfolio deals covering multiple jurisdictions. The team also has broader experience within the sector, advising on work relating to theme parks and attractions, sports grounds and facilities, pub portfolios and golfing resorts. A one-stop-shop, it advises on construction and development, financing, investment and corporate acquisitions and franchising matters. Transactional experts Matt Duncombe and Joanne Owen jointly chair the department. James Davison, lead restructuring partner within the sector, joined from Addleshaw Goddard in July 2020 and has been key to supporting clients throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.

Practice head(s):

Matt Duncombe; Joanne Owen

Other key lawyers:

James Davison

Testimonials

‘Industry wide expertise in all aspects of legal advice on hotel development.’

‘Really strong team with a razor sharp focus on the commercial deal.’

‘James Davison is an exceptionally client focused partner. He always makes himself available, goes out of his way to understand the key commercial considerations of a transaction and will bring in whatever expertise is required from his colleagues to ensure the client has the best team available.’

Key clients

The Blackstone Group International Partners LLP

Wood Street Hotel Limited

Marriott International

Orca Holding Limited

Edyn (a Brookfield company)

Sandman Hotel Group

Room2 Aparthotels

DFI/ BCP Capital

Chris Stewart Group

Deloitte LLP

Aareal Bank AG

Infrastructure Tier 2

Dealing with the entire project lifecycle, DLA Piper advises on a range of infrastructure fund and PPP/PFI matters. The practice also assists clients with growing concerns relating to sustainability and environmental, social governance (SESG). Infratech is another increasing area of activity for the firm, and a strength that was boosted by the 2020 arrival of Bob Maynard and Caroline Pope from Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP. A stand-out partner is Martin Nelson-Jones, who has experience advising on M&A and corporate matters across the energy and infrastructure and consumer products sectors. He co-leads the UK team with Birmingham-based Howard Bassford, who focuses on obtaining planning and regulatory approvals for energy, infrastructure, marine and railway development projects.

Practice head(s):

Martin Nelson-Jones; Howard Bassford

Other key lawyers:

Caroline Pope; Bob Maynard

Key clients

Cube Infrastructure Fund

Department for Transport

East West Rail Company Limited

Energy Infrastructure Partners AG (Formerly Credit Suisse Energy Infrastructure partners)

G.Network Communications

High Speed Two (HS2) Limited

Highways England

Manchester Airport Group

Steward Health Care International

Velindre NHS Trust

Virgin Atlantic

Amber Infrastructure Group

Dalmore Capital

InfraRed Capital Partners

Erith Contractors Limited

Insurance and reinsurance litigation Tier 2

The London-based team at DLA Piper benefits from the firm’s ‘international presence’ and the ‘availability of the full DLA Piper network’ to handle cross-border insurance disputes. The practice has expertise in disputes involving  financial lines, aviation, property, construction, energy and casualty insurance. Head of the team Leon Taylor is experienced in acting in the UK courts and has a particular focus in international reinsurance contract and aviation coverage disputes. Andrew Symons has expertise in financial line disputes, while Rebecca Hopkirk is noted for handling cross-border insurance matters and Jane Childs leads the international financial lines insurance disputes practice.

Practice head(s):

Leon Taylor

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Symons; Rebecca Hopkirk; Jane Childs

Testimonials

‘Very broad expertise, and the availability of the full DLA Piper network in the background is useful.’

‘Leon Taylor in particular has provided excellent support.’

‘Excellent advice, strong reinsurance experience. Pragmatic approach. Approachable and responsive.’

‘Rebecca Hopkirk – an absolute gem. Very commercial and extremely responsive.’

‘The flexibility for the team to grow and contract as demands of the cases have shifted has been key. As a result of discovery demands and Covid-19 restrictions the team has searched for a delivered digital solutions.’

‘Depth, expertise, international presence, joined-up approach.’

Key clients

Swiss Re

AIG

Zurich

Chubb

Berkshire Hathaway/Faraday syndicate/Resolute Management

AXA XL

Munich Re

Tokio Marine Kiln

Allianz/AGCS

Liberty Specialty Markets

Talbot Underwriting Limited

Placing Platform Limited

R&Q

RSA

Atrium Underwriters Limited

Crawford & Co

Hiscox syndicate at Lloyds

Beazley syndicate at Lloyds

Gen Re

Partner Re

Brit

Intellectual property Tier 2

DLA Piper handles commercial issues, transactions, and litigation for national and multinational clients, with particular strength in the retail and consumer, manufacturing, and life sciences industries. The team is integrated nationally, and regularly acts on cross-border matters, including trade mark and brand enforcement and protection. The team is led by Sarah BellLee Brierley, and Peter Brook, who advise on commercial and non-contentious IP issues, while senior associate Jim McDonnell specialises in IP, including cross-border licensing and disputes.

Practice head(s):

Sarah Bell; Lee Brierley; Peter Brook

Other key lawyers:

Jim McDonnell

Testimonials

‘DLA have large teams covering a wide variety of legal matters with office locations across the globe providing great international reach. As a global business we have operations in many different countries and DLA.’

‘DLA really take the time to get to know our internal team and understand our business, which enables them to better support us and act as a true extension of our in-house team. It also enables them to focus on the big picture and deliver pragmatic business solutions to complicated legal issues. Their lawyers are prepared to adopt a commercial approach when required and give us clear recommendations rather than simply laying out the options.’

‘Responsive, reasonable cost, willingness to state the complex point in simple commercial language.’

Key clients

takepayments

Laura Ashley

Sellafield

Unilever

Trio Healthcare / Impel Healthcare

Premier League

Newell Brands

Vernacare

AO World

DW Sports

Graham and Brown

Key Group

Orcha Health

Frederic Robinson

Graham & Brown

The Hut Group

Nichols

Becton Dickinson

Snowdonia Cheese Co

Transport for the North

Intellectual property: trade marks, copyright and design Tier 2

Leading DLA Piper’s impressive IP work in the sports sector, the ‘talented and diligent‘ department head Ruth Hoy and John Wilks (working in tandem with the firm’s top-rated media rights partners) handle a wide span of contentious instructions for the Premier League, from image rights and trade mark enforcement to criminal copyright actions. Managing partner Simon Levine is also a highly active IP litigator across the span of media industries. Legal directors Claire Sng (‘phenomenal technical skills and attention to detail‘) is a go-to name for advice on brand protection and portfolio management, IP exploitation and commercialisation. Additional sectors of expertise for the team include life sciences, consumer goods, technology and retail.

Practice head(s):

Ruth Hoy

Other key lawyers:

John Wilks; Simon Levine; Claire Sng; Alasdair Muller; Ella Castle

Testimonials

DLA Piper is the firm of choice (and the clear market leader) for website blocking injunctions work and novel forms of online relief for broadcasting, media and entertainment clients. DLA has pioneered the use of website blocking orders to protect live sports broadcast rights for the Premier League, boxing promoters and other major broadcasters.

First-rate team with unmatched technical and commercial knowledge of the tech/media sectors.

Ruth Hoy – talented and diligent.

Alasdair Muller – exceptional associate in Ruth Hoy’s team, who clearly knows his stuff when it comes to online protection of copyright and trade marks.

We do really value Ruth Hoy’s understanding of the challenges that emerging creative businesses face and the incredible generosity of her pro-bono support over the years.

John Wilks is a trusted advisor who is always available to input on matters, no matter how complex.

Ella Castle is an exceptional associate who operates at a much higher level than her PQE would suggest.

Claire Sng is brilliant – she has phenomenal technical skills and attention to detail, and is hugely client-focused.

Key clients

Nike

The Football Association Premier League Limited

Mondelez International Inc

Emirates Airlines

International Airlines Group/ British Airways

Bajaj Auto Limited

Toshiba

Duracell

Arla Foods Amba and Arla Foods Limited

Papa Johns

Merlin Entertainment

UEFA

FIFA

Nikon

NetJets Management Limited

Hermès

BPI (British Recorded Music Industry) Limited

Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. (“ICE”)

Dixons Carphone

Rolls Royce

Discovery Communications

City, University of London

NLA Media Access

International business reorganisations Tier 2

Ben Forgiel-Jenkins leads the international business reorganisations group at DLA Piper, which leverages the firm's global network to handle a broad range of cross-border transactions. The group's cross-departmental approach also utilises the firm's legal project management function and works closely with the firm's global M&A practice to advise on post-acquisition integrations and pre-transaction restructurings, carve-outs, spin-offs, legal entity rationalisations, regulatory-focused reorganisations and supply chain optimisations. Corporate partner Jon Hayes regularly contributes to the practice, along with counsel Stan Stewart, Leeds-based legal director Paul Routledge and newly promoted senior associate Clare McLaren.

Practice head(s):

Ben Forgiel-Jenkins

Other key lawyers:

Jon Hayes; Stan Stewart; Paul Routledge; Clare McLaren

Testimonials

‘The team can be relied on to support the entirety of a project; they do not focus only on the ‘big ticket’ or substantive part of a transaction. Rather, they do that, but also ensure that all smaller aspects are addressed and all loose ends tied up. So they can be used as a sole legal partner – as opposed to a firm which focuses purely on substantial transactions.’

‘ It is invaluable to have a law firm that will help you with an entire transaction (as well as non transactional matters), that will make your life easier by coordinating overseas advice and that gives you confidence that you are being advised by technically able as well as experienced lawyers.’

‘DLA lawyers think around the topics and provide holistic advice. They do not narrowly answer the question set, but will ensure that they have explored the broader topic before advising. They seek to tailor it in a practical, usable manner.’

Key clients

General Electric Company

Howmet Aerospace

Local government Tier 2

DLA Piper advises local government clients on a broad range of issues, including planning, outsourcing, projects and pensions. It has a notably strong record in regeneration projects. Sarah Bell is experienced in assisting clients with commercial projects, procurement and joint ventures. She jointly leads the team with Liam Cowell, who specialises in infrastructure and project finance transactions. Up-and-coming partner Gemma Cowap focuses on local authority commercial trading projects and strategic partnerships.

Practice head(s):

Sarah Bell; Liam Cowell

Other key lawyers:

Gemma Cowap

Key clients

Cheshire West and Chester Borough Council

Greater Manchester Waste Disposal Authority

Halton Borough Council / Mersey Gateway Crossing Board Limited

Knowsley Metropolitan Borough Council

Liverpool City Council

Liverpool Vision Limited

Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council

Transport for Greater Manchester

Transport for the North

Westminster City Council

Wirral Borough Council

Sciontec Developments Limited

Oil and gas Tier 2

DLA Piper fields a ‘strong, committed, hard-working team’ that is singled out for its top-rated energy disputes practice and midstream and downstream oil and gas work. National head of the energy and natural resources group James Carter leads the team, which is skilled in cross-border transactional work across the Middle East and Africa. Counsel Felix Ndi-Obiosa handles project finance and development work, with extensive experience advising on energy and infrastructure projects across Africa, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. Nacim Bounouara advises lenders and sponsors on power projects across EMEA. On the international arbitration side, Philip Chong leads the Europe team and acts for large oil and gas companies in disputes pertaining to supply and transit. Also of note is Andreas Gunst who is active in LNG and gas pipeline projects in Europe. Dimitri Papaefstratiou left to join Charles Morrison at EY LLP.

Practice head(s):

James Carter

Other key lawyers:

Philip Chong; Felix Ndi-Obiosa; Andreas Gunst; Christina Lawrence;  Charles Allin; Nacim Bounouara

Testimonials

’Good level of partner engagement and responsiveness. Nacim Bounouara is commercial and works in a constructive way to achieve the best outcome for the project. Felix Ndi-Obiosa is responsive and committed in his approach to getting the deal done.’

‘The Rolls-Royce of city litigation practices – they can staff any case with the best lawyers at the appropriate level, can handle any dispute and have expertise around the world. They readily bring these skills into focus in the oil and gas sector.’

‘ James Carter – very cerebral and good tactical acumen. Charles Allin – capable of running a case like a partner. Great inter-personal skills, huge litigation experience and a natural litigator.’

‘Unique capabilities in dealing with cases that involve complex economic issues. They are also excellent on Russia connected disputes.’

‘Philip Chong and Christina Lawrence are exceptional. They have a deep understanding of energy disputes and a strong commitment to their clients’.

’The lawyers at the firm are approachable and responsive. Generally, the firm is very good at simplifying complex transactions and omitting unnecessary legalese, without compromising quality or creating legal risk. Their approach is solution orientated and business-like, which makes it easy to work with them as a corporate counsel.’

‘Felix Ndi-Obiosa has helped in ensuring a seamless conclusion of the transactions we have worked on together. He is an excellent lawyer who is solution driven and commercially-focused.’

‘DLA have a strong, committed, hard-working team – prepared to put in the extra effort required to ensure that the largest cases and presented effectively. Philip Chong is one of the leading oil and gas lawyers in the market – widely known for his breadth of experience and safe pair of hands. James Carter is sparky and effective.’

Pensions (non-contentious) Tier 2

DLA Piper's pensions team offers multi-disciplinary advice through close collaboration with its employment, corporate, and tax colleagues. Matthew Swynnerton leads the practice, which has seen the creation of a dedicated de-risking team, led by Amrit Mclean which focuses on advising insurers, schemes, and sponsors on bulk annuity transactions. Tamara Calvert is known for her expertise in relation to the Electricity Supply Pensions Scheme. Swynnerton, meanwhile, is also involved in the development of drafting secondary legislation for the Pension Schemes Act 2021, working directly with the DWP.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Swynnerton

Other key lawyers:

Tamara Calvert; Amrit Mclean

Testimonials

‘Excellent advice and service across the team. Excellent communication within appropriate team members and very responsive. They know how to bring in expertise/specialism when needed.’

‘We have used DLA for over 20 years and they have dealt with all matters that a pension scheme can face. They have always delivered and have a strong and knowledgeable team.’

‘Tamara Calvert – I could not fault her excellent advice, her collaborative approach and leadership’

Key clients

Hitachi Rail Europe Limited

Universities Superannuation Scheme Limited

Novartis UK Pension Scheme

Aviva Yes

National Grid (ESPS)

E.ON UK (ESPS)

Grainger Inc /Cromwell Group (Holdings) Limited

Du Pont (U.K.) Limited Pensions Fund

Renault UK

Heineken

Power (including electricity, nuclear and renewables) Tier 2

DLA Piper’s renewable energy practice has recently made two new additions to its team; offshore wind specialist Bruce Chen, who joined from Allen & Overy LLP as of counsel, and legal director Steven Gray, who formerly worked on climate matters at the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. Global energy and natural resources co-chair Natasha Luther-Jones, who divides her time between Leeds and London, is described as ‘exceptionally creative’ by clients; she regularly works with colleagues across the firm's Europe network to effectively handle cross-border mandates, with Andreas Gunst in Vienna and Fredrik Lindblom in Oslo both key names. The group has recently seen a number of departures to Ernst & Young LLP, with Charles MorrisonDimitri Papaefstratiou, and Simon Collier all leaving to establish a new energy practice for the Big Four firm. Senior associate Jeremy MacIver, who specialises in green energy, has of late been working remotely in New Zealand and building up the firm's connections there.

Practice head(s):

Natasha Luther-Jones

Other key lawyers:

Nacim Bounouara; Charlotte Eliades; Bruce Chen; Steven Gray; Jeremy MacIver

Testimonials

‘A dedicated team that leaves no stone unturned. Strong capacity to deal with complex financing structures and transactions. I always feel prioritised. You always get a fast and detailed answer to any questions. This is extremely valuable, knowing that you can reach out at any time and get a quick reply.’

‘Natasha Luther-Jones stands out as a very warm, friendly and highly knowledgeable expert in the field. We have worked with her and the firm on many corporate PPAs and project financings now, and we can comfortably state that she is the best in her peer group.’

’I have excellent experience from working with the same partners and associates on several transactions and issues post-acquisition, and we developed a efficient dynamic and a trusting client-legal adviser relationship. We have for the most part worked together virtually as the people were based in different countries, and it always worked well.’

‘Responsive, pragmatic, industry knowledge and understanding of commercial considerations, trustworthy, solution oriented and extremely nice to work with.’

’Very strong capability in renewables throughout Europe. Wide ranging capability in providing support to developers, funders and operators. Innovative in their solutions to ensure deals are robust, fair and have longevity. Also good corporate capability with excellent M&A experience. Always willing to go that extra mile to achieve a satisfactory outcome.’

’Natasha Luther-Jones is an exceptionally creative lawyer dedicated to achieving client satisfaction with great knowledge and capability in the power sector. You also see a willingness to develop others and structure a team that can adapt to the changing needs of the market so they are one step ahead of other firms.’

Property litigation Tier 2

The head of the ‘experienced and very capable team’ at DLA Piper is property litigator Martin Griffiths, who excels in disputes over developments and large-scale property portfolio management. Legal director Rachael Jones also takes a lead role in a number of litigated property matters, including lease renewals and dilapidations claims. Recent work included advising landlords on workarounds for Covid19-related restrictions on enforcement actions.

Practice head(s):

Martin Griffiths

Other key lawyers:

Rachael Jones

Testimonials

‘I have had dealings with Rachael Jones over the past year on a number of property litigation cases. She is extremely knowledgeable about real property law, and all the relevant litigation procedures and tactics.’

‘An experienced and very capable team who are truly committed to securing the best result for their clients.’

‘Martin Griffiths – Partner, a cool head and a very safe pair of hands.’

‘Rachael Jones – Legal Director. Truly impressive. Very experienced in handling complex legal issues, great client care skills, manages pressured situations brilliantly.

‘I have worked with this team for many years and have always found them to be approachable and to give prompt, pragmatic and focussed advice.’

‘Rachael Jones – in several cases she has gone above and beyond, providing not only the advice required but also background and context. This provides a greater understanding of the litigation as a whole and allowed for a reasoned and considered decision to be taken.’

Key clients

Schroders

Liverpool Football Club

Picton

Universities Superannuation Scheme Limited

USF Nominees Limited (Unilever’s Pension Fund)

Heineken

Pilkington

Cheshire West and Chester Council

FI Real Estate Management

St James’s Place UK Plc

Rail Tier 2

DLA Piper deals with complex rail matters across the UK, including advising on HS2, advising the DfT on procurements, and advising freight operators on claims against Network Rail. It also has extensive commercial experience regarding rolling stock procurement and rail franchises, and provides support on operational matters regarding franchise support and rolling stock leasing. Co-head of the team Robert Smith acts for public and private sector clients on complex rail transactions, including procurement of new train fleets, while practice co-head Colin Wilson deals with cross-border joint ventures, PPPs and outsourcings. Legal director Carla Hancock leads on rail franchise procurements for DfT.

Practice head(s):

Robert Smith; Colin Wilson

Other key lawyers:

Carla Hancock

TMT Tier 2

With a range of public and private sector clients across the spectrum of TMT, DLA Piper is well positioned to provide full-service advice regarding major IT and telecoms projects spanning multiple jurisdictions. Of particular note, the firm is currently advising G. Network Communications on the equity side of a fundraising to invest over £1bn in rolling out Fibre to the Premises (FTTP) connectivity across London. Kit Burden specialises in outsourcing, procurement and technology transactions, in which he advises both users and suppliers of IT, including major corporates and investment banks. On the media side, Nick Fitzpatrick is the key name to note, with significant experience in copyright, broadcasting and sponsorship law, and an emphasis on licensing rights. On the telecoms side, Mike Conradi is a standout practitioner, with a strong track record of advising governments, regulators and businesses in connection with large-scale mandates, including projects involving submarine cables.

Practice head(s):

Kit Burden; Nicholas Fitzpatrick; Mike Conradi

Testimonials

‘Kit Burden is a leading authority on technology outsourcing that seemingly works 24/7 and somehow anticipates everything we ask. Working with him on a large project was one of the best experiences I’ve had with external counsel in 20+ years.’

‘DLA TMT practice is a world-class team of lawyers. True depth of knowledge, experience and intelligence. The presentations run over the Covid period – particularly by Kit Burden – have been tremendously helpful. DLA are miles ahead of the competition in terms of presentation of advice – they go the extra mile in ensuring it is pragmatic and relevant to the scenario. It is well-researched – from the legal and market / industry perspective – and presented skilfully and to the point.’

‘Client oriented and practical approach. Sophisticated and creative thinking.’

‘The breadth of legal knowledge and experience amongst their lawyers from junior to partners distinguishes them from other firms. Their ability to advise, find pragmatic contractual solutions and support our needs as a business makes them an invaluable partner.’

Key clients

Ministry of Defence

NHS/Connecting for Health

DEFRA

HMRC

Standard Chartered Bank

UBS

Aviva

British Airways/IAG

Heineken

HCL Technologies

Amadeus

Microland

Ericsson

CDW

Willis Tower Watson

Philip Morris

Merlin Entertainment

National Basketball Association

Premier League

Unilever

VAT and indirect tax Tier 2

DLA Piper advises clients on a wide range of indirect tax matters across the real estate, financial services, education, gambling and IP sectors. Practice head Richard Woolich is a chartered tax adviser and has a strong international VAT practice; he focuses on international real estate transactions, joint ventures and funds.

Practice head(s):

Richard Woolich

Other key lawyers:

Jamie Kim; Maud Murcia; Helena Monaghan

Testimonials

‘Richard Woolich was very good at brainstorming ideas with me, which was very helpful in preparing for court. He is also excellent in understanding the clients’ commercial needs and in explaining in client friendly terms what the various choices and issues during litigation are.’

‘Maud Murcia is an efficient and hardworking associate.’

‘Richard Woolich stands head and shoulders above his peers. His technical knowledge and local government experience and awareness makes him the consummate adviser.  If there is something that Richard doesn’t know, I haven’t identified it, but I do know that whatever it is, he’ll know who within DLA will know and he’ll have them with you in double quick time.’

‘Richard Woolich is the genuinely nice guy that you don’t expect to meet in tax practice. He takes time to allow you to contextualise your issue; he never harries you and he certainly personifies the steady head that you always hope that you’ll engage when you need one.’

‘Richard Woolich is the classic “still waters run deep” adviser. His ability to simultaneously put you at ease, identify the key issues, and chart a way forward is only rivalled by his attention to detail, unparalleled prompt, clear and concise client updates, and ultimately track record of delivery.’

‘Maud Murcia has excelled in both supporting Richard Woolich and servicing our requirements. Maud seems to always be on hand and always responds promptly to queries. Her standout quality, though, is her structured delivery, something that I greatly welcome.’

‘Richard Woolich is standout but the team are all very excellent. Very knowledgeable, experts, commercial, fair, honest, wonderful to work with and so much more.’

Banking litigation: investment and retail Tier 3

Recommended for 'heavyweight banking disputes', DLA Piper's litigation and regulatory team attracts praise for its 'breadth of experience and skills across all seniority levels'. The group frequently works cross-office including with colleagues across its national offices in UK disputes and leverages its international network in cross-border matters, particularly in the fraud and regulatory spheres. Jean-Pierre Douglas-Henry, the 'hugely experienced' Jamie Curle and the 'exceptional' Jeremy Andrews jointly lead the practice. Other names to note include Jeremy Sher, who leads the firm's class actions group, and the 'thoroughly excellent' associate Sam Bodle. Legal director Tom Laidler joined the team in June 2021 from Akin Gump LLP.

Practice head(s):

Jean Pierre Douglas Henry; Jamie Curle; Jeremy Andrews

Other key lawyers:

Jeremy Sher; Sam Bodle; Tom Laidler

Testimonials

Jamie Curle (DLA London)(Partner) – hugely experienced, high-profile practice; great ability to guide strategic direction and keep on top of the detail. Sam Bodle (DLA London) (Senior Associate) – thoroughly excellent; star of the future; drafts with real flair.

Clearly DLA are a large international law firm, however, in our experience, they run cases very much with partner input and drive. For their size they are extremely agile.’

Jeremy Andrew and Jamie Curle in the London office are outstanding and have exceptional management skills on large and smaller litigation in a variety of commercial areas.

Jeremy Andrews is an exceptional professional, with great qualities. He has been outstanding in handling crisis situations and resourceful and creative in finding alternative ways forward. He is always within reach, and responds promptly and effectively.

DLA has real strength and depth to its banking litigation team, across London, Leeds and Sheffield. They have a team of seasoned veterans, together with some very talented and hard-working junior partners, legal directors and associates. They consistently get good results and are very flexible around pricing. DLA’s banking litigation team really doesn’t get the market recognition that they deserve.

Jeremy Andrews – highly intelligent, hard-working and experienced partner who leads from the front.

Breath of experience and skills across all seniority levels.’

Team deals with heavyweight banking disputes – good value, excellent experience.

Key clients

Rabobank

Commercial litigation: premium Tier 3

DLA Piper's 'flexible, creative' litigation and regulatory practice is 'excellent at managing largescale international litigation', particularly those involving emerging markets. 'Great strategic thinker' Jean-Pierre Douglas-Henry and the 'hugely experienced' Jamie Curle jointly lead the team. Douglas-Henry's broad practice increasingly includes advising clients on human rights and governance issues; Curle and legal director Charles Allin count financial services sector, fraud and asset tracing and natural resources disputes among their specialisms. Jeremy Andrews is experienced in litigation involving the offshore jurisdictions, Russia and China, while James Carter is active in Africa-related disputes. Legal director Sarah Ellington is another contact for ESG issues.

Practice head(s):

Jean Pierre Douglas-Henry; Jamie Curle

Other key lawyers:

Jeremy Sher; James Carter; Jeremy Andrews; Charles Allin; Sarah Ellington; Alexander Chaize

Testimonials

Jamie Curle ( London) – top notch; hugely experienced; high-profile practice; great ability to guide strategic direction and stay on top of detail at same time. Jeremy Andrews (London) –  smooth operator; very experienced; great commercial nouse; inspires confidence.’

JP Douglas-Henry is a great strategic thinker. Jeremy Andrews is a classy operator who provides a superb, urbane presence on any team. Jamie Curle is clever and fights hard from the outset. James Carter is an up and coming partner with particularly good arbitration expertise. This is a good outfit – and they work well as a team dealing with disputes of any scale. I have worked with them on cases ranging between $10m and $1bn and they each bring something to the table.’

James Carter – fantastic judgement on client handling issues; he had to make a number of difficult calls during the course of this case and got them all right. Jeremy Sher – superb handling of very difficult disclosure issues. Jeremy will always go the extra mile. Charles Allin – a rising star.  He was the “point man” or lynch-pin on a number of key aspects of the case. His drafting is top-notch and his attention to detail impressive.

Jeremy Andrews – unflappable leadership, he has everyone’s back, and wants everyone’s ideas on the table for consideration. Sarah Ellington – real focus on the law and the arguments. Alexander Chaize – a star of the future, in the Jeremy Andrews mold. What really makes them stand out is that yes they are brilliant lawyers but they are also nice people, at the top of their game.’

Flexible, creative and well-run practice. Good associates who work well together and seem to enjoy working together on our big case, the impression is they are very invested in the result, demonstrate impressive attention to detail. The size of the practice allows to staff the case according to its ever-evolving requirements and meet tight deadlines. Flexible billing approaches to address budgeting concerns on a case that spans many years and many jurisdictions.

They can staff any case with the best lawyers at the appropriate level, can handle any dispute and have expertise around the world.’

They are excellent at managing largescale international litigation.’

Key clients

Renova Industries Limited et. al.

The Football Association Premier League

Commercial property: Birmingham Tier 3

Home to ‘extensive knowledge of the property market’, DLA Piper is engaged on everything from large scale developments and transport and infrastructure projects through to high-value investments and landlord and tenant projects. Practice head Monique Sutherland provides input at each stage of energy, housing, leisure, office and mixed-use projects and holds distinguished expertise in respect of brownfield land considerations; she is supported at partner-level by Roger Collier who oversees office, industrial and warehouse premises on behalf of his clients, as well as Katie Jacobson who predominantly focuses on mixed-use schemes and retail developments. Sernior associate Rachel Williams is also integral to the offering and is noted as a 'source of knowledge in large infrastructure projects and land transactions'.

Practice head(s):

Monique Sutherland

Other key lawyers:

Roger Collier; Katie Jacobson; Rachel Williams

Testimonials

‘Friendly and supportive.’

‘Rachel Williams is partner material already. She is exceptional. Great with clients. Knows the law. Very commercial and practically minded. ’

‘Extensive knowledge of property market and key partner for clients in large infrastructure projects.’

‘Rachel Williams is source of property knowledge on large infrastructure projects and land transactions around that sector. She demonstrates an awareness and interest in the changing factors in the market, including the green revolution and the alternatives investment market.’

‘The team at DLA Piper in Birmingham has been one of our leading providers for several years, advising on a range of matters from routine sales and lettings to complex JV transactions. The DLA team ishighly responsive, aligned to our business needs and provide high quality legal advice at competitive rates.’

‘Monique Sutherland provides excellent commercial awareness, great negotiation skills and a calm presence in difficult negotiations.’

‘Sophie Murtough’s skillset and knowledge has grown significantly over recent years, a real asset for the firm.’

‘Monique Sutherland has a wealth of experience  across the spectrum of commercial property matters and I hold her advice in great store.’

Key clients

National Grid

Avison Young

LaSalle Investment Management

UPS Limited

High Speed Two (HS2) Limited

The Land Restoration Trust

Oval Developments Limited

Dignity Funerals Limited

Prologis

Travelodge Hotels Limited

Amber Real Estate Limited

Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council

Forensic Archive Limited (a subsidiary of the Home Office)

Genting Casinos UK Limited

Aggregate Industries UK Limited

Croda Europe Limited

Willis Towers Watson

Harris Strategic Land Limited

Construction Tier 3

DLA Piper’s Birmingham office is home to the firm’s UK construction head, Stephen Malley; his focus lies in the non-contentious space where he primarily oversees hotel and leisure, residential and logistics projects. The other key name locally is legal director Victoria Ball who demonstrates prowess in construction contracts, professional appointments, lease, ancillary bond and development agreements, as well as guarantees and warrantees. The practice is fully integrated with the firm’s global construction team which is spread across APAC, North and South America, Europe and the Middle East.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Malley

Other key lawyers:

Victoria Ball

Testimonials

‘An extremely proactive and innovative team whom you can rely on for complex and time sensitive transactions where complex issues need to be dealt with at pace. Able to provide advice on the fly is crucial for a firm like ours and this DLA team manages this.’

‘The team’s understanding of client needs and then finding and shaping appropriate solutions is excellent, as is their ability to respond quickly and efficiently to urgent client requests.’

‘Stephen Malley is always available and well briefed on the relevant issues – his ability to understand the appropriate solution for individual circumstances is very much valued.’

Key clients

Far East Consortium

UPS Limited

Edyn Group (Brookfield)

Summix Capital

Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

World Wheel Company

This is Gravity

Eelam Properties

Summix Capital

Blackswan Cordia

MBU Capital

Construction: non-contentious Tier 3

DLA Piper's construction team advises a range of high-profile domestic and international clients on both standard construction and projects-adjacent matters. The team is co-led by Peter Lowe and Sarah Thomas, each emphasising a different arm of the practice. Lowe advises developers and investors on a number of core real estate asset classes, with particular knowledge of the student accommodation and private rental sector. Thomas, meanwhile, focuses on the infrastructure and projects arm, with particular knowledge of energy, mining and water matters, and a growing focus on infratech.

Practice head(s):

Peter Lowe; Sarah Thomas

Testimonials

‘The practice has a unique skill set of being very strong legally combined with excellent commercial acumen and the project management skills to close complex multi-site portfolio deals.’

‘Solid experience and accessibility. Strong ability to deliver on short notice.’

‘Sarah Thomas is very responsive, to the point and with significant business acumen and a holistic approach to projects. We appreciate her clear, razor-sharp legal analysis and her pragmatic approach to solutions.’

‘Peter Lowe has been my go-to construction lawyer for almost a decade. He has provided invaluable advice time and time again. He has managed the construction workstream progress with ease on multiple projects. This project management skill set is something I haven’t come across often with any lawyer. DLA has real depth and the reach back into other offices to assist with the heavy lifting is a real positive for the practice.’

Key clients

Quintain Limited

CA Ventures

Global Student Accommodation

The Pollen Estate

Debt capital markets Tier 3

At DLA Piper, 'the legal advice is always timely, commercially sensitive and reflects up-to-date market practice'. The firm, which is best known for emerging markets debt issuance, is active in many innovative deals, including commercial paper programmes for accessing the Covid Corporate Finance Facility, deals involving fintech-related assets, social and green investment bonds and Masala Bonds. Structured finance specialist Martin Bartlam is international group head of finance, projects and restructuring, and oversees the DCM practice along with UK head of capital markets and structured investments Tony Lopez and global co-chair of financial services Mark Dwyer. Dwyer, who has more than 25 years' experience in debt offerings and liability management, and Lopez recently assisted Ukrainian mobile operator Neqsol with a $500m Reg S/Rule 144 offering of loan participation notes listed on Euronext Dublin. Joywin Mathew frequently represents international banks, funds and corporates on complex, multi-jurisdictional finance transactions, inclduing equity-linked debt offerings and private placements.

Practice head(s):

Martin Bartlam; Tony Lopez; Mark Dwyer

Other key lawyers:

Joywin Mathew; Mei Mei Wong

Testimonials

‘The DLA team are outstanding. Their legal advice is always timely, commercially sensitive and reflects up-to-date market practice. In addition they are just a wonderful and friendly team to work with.’

‘Our primary contacts are Mark Dwyer and legal director Mei Mei Wong. Both are accessible and very intelligent and capable lawyers. In addition, they comprehensively understand our company group, which means that we can always rely on them to not only deliver strategic advice on the matter at hand, but also to consider with us the wider implications for the corporate group.’

Key clients

Morgan Stanley & Co. International PLC

NatWest Markets

Intesa Sanpaolo S.p.A.

Axis Bank Limited, Singapore Branch, Standard Chartered Bank, MUFG Securities

Fingrid Oyj

SThree plc

Keller Group plc

Magyar Fejlesztési Bank Zrt. (Hungarian Development Bank)

VEON Limited

Azerconnect

GuarantCo

Corral Petroleum Holdings

Derivatives and structured products Tier 3

DLA Piper provides 'spot-on advice in a cost-efficient manner' and one clients notes that its advice is 'always timely, commercially sensitive and reflecting up-to-date market practice'. The firm advises leading financial institutions, among them Morgan Stanley, on high-value cross-border financing deals. The firm has also been instructed by industry association ISDA to produce an English law draw down opinion for its members in relation to the legal status of Nordic Investment Bank. International head of finance and projects Martin Bartlam and global co-chair of financial services Mark Dwyer oversee the derivatives and structured products practice. Bartlam has more than 30 years' experience in structured deals, securitisation and derivatives, notably structured credit and asset management transactions. Steven Krivinskas has broad experience in structured finance and debt capital markets transactions, acting for both financial institutions and borrowers in connection with note programmes and standalone issuances.

Practice head(s):

Martin Bartlam; Mark Dwyer

Other key lawyers:

Steven Krivinskas; Marcus Lovatt; James Tighe; Patrick Lightbown

Testimonials

‘DLA Piper provides spot-on advice in a cost-efficient manner.’

‘Steven Krivinskas is a very responsive and innovative partner of the finance law department at DLA Piper. He is one of our key external counsel for our repack business.’

‘The DLA team is outstanding. Their legal advice is always timely, commercially sensitive and reflecting up-to-date market practice. In addition, they are just a wonderful and friendly team to work with.’

‘Our primary contacts are Mark Dwyer, James Tighe and Marcus Lovatt. All three are accessible and very intelligent and capable lawyers. In addition, they comprehensively understand our company group, which means that we can always rely on them to not only deliver strategic advice on the matter at hand, but also to consider with us the wider implications for the corporate group.’

‘Very committed and efficient, trustworthy and most of all competent.’

‘The team covers a broad range of matters in structured products and derivatives, allowing them to bring experience from their relevant fields into each matter demonstrating a broader context for their already well-informed advice. The team also has a great depth of in house secondment experience with clients, meaning that they have a strong focus on clients’ priorities which helps them target their services to what their clients are concerned about. ‘

‘Marcus Lovatt and Patrick Lightbown are able to bring the balance of sound advice to assist in the management of risks with the practical overlay to ensure that transactions are delivered that will work mechanically for all parties involved. They are dedicated in their approach and are highly available, confident yet polite in negotiations as well as creative and pointed in drafting to allow them to implement client wishes and meet transaction deadlines.’

‘Very professional. They also have a highly experienced team in our specific area, where other firms will often use lawyers who are familiar but specialise in a different area of structured finance. They are also often the best value for money when compared to our other panel law firms.’

Key clients

Morgan Stanley & Co. International PLC

Ares European Loan Management LLP

Accunia Fondsmæglerselskab A/S

Frontera Capital Group Limited

Frontera Capital Group BV

Employers Tier 3

DLA Piper’s employment practice, which is led by financial services expert Tim Marshall, frequently takes the lead on high-value strategic matters. In addition to providing ‘excellent advice’ on non-contentious employment law issues, the group is also noted for its experience in employment tribunal and High Court litigation, particularly as it relates to employment status. Cross-border restructurings and discrimination claims (a core area of focus for ‘standout partnerJonathan Exten-Wright), as well as data privacy and compliance issues (a strong suit of Katherine Gibson, who was promoted to partner in May 2020), are additional areas of strength.

Practice head(s):

Tim Marshall

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan Exten-Wright; Vinita Arora; Nick Hipwell; Jane Hannon

Testimonials

Good geographical coverage.’

The team provided excellent advice on employment law matters, in particular employment status issues.’

Jonathan Exten-Wright is a standout partner who goes the extra mile. Nothing is too much trouble for his clients, always responsive and thinking one step ahead.’

The team has a superb ability to grasp our business requirements and provide responses that are expertly tailored to the context of our organisation. There is no jargon in their approach with our senior executives, it is straight-talking, highly professional and totally reliable.’

The team are kind, close and responsive. They handled the death of [former colleague] Adam Hartley by working closely together and doing their very best to pick up the significant work in progress.’

Key clients

PKF Littlejohn

Uber

Superdry

London Stock Exchange

Giorgio Armani

NetApp

Valle

Charlotte Tilbury

(Lloyd Webber) LW Theatres

Premier League

Equity capital markets – mid-large cap Tier 3

DLA Piper strengthened its ranks in 2020 by hiring corporate partner Jonathan Earle (who has significant experience in acting for public companies) and New York-qualified counsel John Stone from Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher and Linklaters LLP respectively. In another notable development, Robert Newman made partner. The EMEA capital markets practice is led by Alex Tamlyn, who has more than 30 years of experience in acting for clients on domestic and cross-border securities offerings and is chair of the London Stock Exchange Primary Markets Group. The broader team handles a myriad of complex matters, including AIM and Main Market IPOs, rights issuances and block trades. In addition, public M&A and demergers are among other drivers of work. Recent highlights included Tamlyn, Martin Penn and legal director Karin Kirschner advising Mothercare on its move from the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange to AIM. In 2020, the team also assisted Learning Technologies Group Plc with an £81.8m equity placing.

Practice head(s):

Alex Tamlyn

Other key lawyers:

Martin Penn; Charles Severs; Robert Newman; Karin Kirschner; John Stone; Johannes Poon; Jonathan Earle

Testimonials

The access to highly experienced partners who can construct wider teams suited to our business.’

The outstanding knowledge and experience of the senior partner on our account, bringing unique approaches which played a very key part in a successful transaction being achieved.’

Flexibility around our ever changing timetables.’

Karin Kirschner in particular is an absolute star. She understands our business and it felt as if she was an extension to us during the transaction, engaging with various stakeholders whilst emitting the softer skills to us as a client.’

Key clients

Accesso Technology Group plc

Allied Minds plc

Aptitude Software Group plc

Canaccord Genuity Limited

Chamberlin plc

Clinigen Group plc

CVS Group plc

Dechra Pharmaceuticals plc

Dignity Funerals plc

Hutchison China Meditech

Hyve Group plc

John Menzies plc

Knights Group Holdings plc

Learning Technologies Group plc

Medica Group plc

Mothercare plc

N+1 Singer Capital Markets Limited

Numis Securities Limited

Peel Hunt LLP

PureTech Health plc

RPS Group plc

Scapa Group plc

Staffline Group plc

Financial services: contentious Tier 3

DLA Piper's team stands out for its position on the FCA Skilled Person panel, enabling it to advise the regulators, as well as representing financial institutions. In addition to more traditional financial regulatory disputes, the group also has an active practice involving fintech and regtech, leveraging the wider firm's specialisms in cybersecurity and data protection cases. The team is jointly managed by Tony Katz, global co-chair of the financial services practice group and specialist in financial crime and enforcement matters; and Sam Millar, who has a particular focus on issues arising from financial products. Patrick Rappo is a key name for white-collar criminal investigations, representing corporates and financial institutions, as well as senior executives. Legal director David Cook joined from Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP in March 2020, bolstering the firm's contentious cybersecurity and data protection offering.

Practice head(s):

Tony Katz; Sam Millar

Other key lawyers:

Patrick Rappo; David Cook; Puesan Lam

Testimonials

Excellent attention to client needs. Intelligence. Great judgment.’

The team at DLA (led by partners Tony Katz and Jeremy Sher) is a joy to work with. Tony and Jeremy are robust and charming individuals for contentious work – they are marked out by their strategic nous and intelligence. Both know the law well (which is not always the case with disputes partners) and will roll up their sleeves and get to grips with the detail, which means they do not simply rely on counsel but instead bring a fully formed strategy and wealth of ideas to the table.’

Tony Katz – a charming and brilliant partner, who brings a refreshing directness to any conversation and gets straight to the point. He seems to have a great capacity to see through the fog of litigation to the points that matter and has no fear of adopting an aggressive strategy when the case calls for it, but knows when to take a cautious approach as well.’

Jeremy Sher is one of the great strategic thinkers I have encountered in litigation: he never approaches litigation without a carefully thought out plan for how to win and what to do to get there. One of the best letter writers in the business as well; his drafting for centre-piece disputes correspondence like letters before action and responses to letters before action is both a joy to read and highly effective at getting results.’

Key clients

Yu Group PLC

Thomas Kalaris

Dixons Carphone Plc

Financial services: non-contentious/regulatory Tier 3

The financial services regulatory team at DLA Piper is noted for being on the panel of a number of international banks and insurers, able to draw on its global presence to provide multi-jurisdictional regulatory advice. Fintech is a key area for the group, which is particularly adept in payments-related issues. Michael McKee heads the European financial services regulatory practice, while Tony Katz leads the UK financial services and investigations team, and co-chairs the firm's financial services sector group. Sam Millar is an expert in derivatives and financial products regulation. Legal director Puesan Lam specialises in the regulatory aspects of financial services transactions, while senior associate Chris Whittaker, who formerly worked in the markets enforcement division of the Australian financial regulator, has a growing reputation in the payments and cryptocurrency arenas.

Practice head(s):

Michael McKee; Tony Katz

Other key lawyers:

Sam Millar; Puesan Lam; Chris Whittaker

Testimonials

This team provided very helpful support on a major outsourcing project. They were focussed and responsive. Tony Katz knows his subject matter very well and is able to provide pragmatic, commercial advice in dealing with difficult and complex regulatory areas.’

Tony Katz is a great lawyer – responsive, intelligent and commercial. He sees clearly through to the issues and is strategic in his advice which is important on multi-jurisdictional deals. Tony Katz works seamlessly with the technology team in DLA Piper and this cross-functional teamwork is far superior to that of other firms.’

I have found Chris Whittaker to be extremely user-friendly and responsive. He gives very practical advice and is a pleasure to deal with.’

Key clients

ING NV (Pyctor)

Abraaj North Africa II Limited Partnership

Prepaid Financial Services Limited

Fircroft Engineering Services

ABH Group

Global Innovation Fund

EQT Fund Management

Marsh & McLennan Companies

Toyota Fleet Mobility GmBH

Link Group

Beech Tree Group

Harrison Street

Insurance: corporate and regulatory Tier 3

DLA Piper’s insurance practice covers a wide range of matters across insurance and reinsurance, with expertise in corporate, commercial and regulatory work. The firm’s recent work included M&A, restructurings, joint ventures, insurance portfolio transfers and regulatory compliance advice. Melanie James, who is a global co-chair of the firm’s insurance team, acts for clients such as AIG, Liberty and Aviva. She is also a former director of a Lloyds broker group. Pensions de-risking expert Amrit Mclean and regulatory expert Jane Childs (who was recruited from Mayer Brown International LLP in late 2020) are also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Melanie James

Other key lawyers:

Tim Baumgartner; Anthony Day; Amrit Mclean; Laura Marcelli; Jonathan Clarke; George Mortimer; Magdi Adab; Rebecca Hughes

Testimonials

Very dedicated insurance team that understands the industry and market practice, with lots of current and recent advisory activity.’

Clear and precise advice tailored to the needs of the customer.’

Engaged and able to discuss the commercial impact of potential outcomes.’

The DLA team assist us across a variety of areas and on the corporate and reg side they have been a huge help in our preparations for Brexit. They have provided pragmatic and commercial advice and always work to meet our deadlines.

Melanie James manages the overall relationship and George Mortimer has been taking charge of the specific regulatory advice. Both Mel and George are extremely responsive and commercial.

Excellent technical knowledge specific to UK and EU insurance regulatory issues; partners and associates very approachable and give pragmatic advice.’

Key clients

Aetna

AIG

AON

Arag

Athora

Aviva Plc & Aviva Ventures

AXA

Brit Global Speciality

Carrick Speciality Holdings

Compre

Crawford & Company

DARAG

Euclid

FM Global

Fosun

GE Capital

Generali

Hannover Re

Liberty Mutual

Liverpool Victoria (LV)

Marco Capital Holdings Limited

Marsh & McLennan Company Inc

MS Amlin

Munich Re (HSB/Munich Re)

Premia

Pelican Ventures LLC

Phoenix Life

Placing Platform Ltd

Rothesay Life Plc

Saudi Re

Starstone

Scottish Widows

Society of Lloyds

The Trustees of Royal Insurance Group Pension Scheme

Themis

International arbitration Tier 3

DLA Piper handles multi-specialist, multi-jurisdiction, large-scale international commercial arbitrations and the practice fields experts in corporate, energy, and infrastructure and construction disputes, as well as Africa, Russia/CIS and Far East Asia-related claims. Europe international arbitration head Philip Chong is active in energy sector and infrastructure matters; Kate Cervantes-Knox acts in international commercial arbitration and investor-state disputes; and James Carter specialises in international commercial arbitrations. Jeremy Andrews and Christina Lawrence are also experienced partners, while the legal directors to note are cross-border commercial disputes expert Jue Jun Lu, and Charles Allin, whose current focus is on Africa, Middle East and offshore jurisdiction-related disputes.

Practice head(s):

Philip Chong

Other key lawyers:

Kate Cervantes-Knox; James Carter; Jeremy Andrews; Christina Lawrence; Jeremy Sher; Charles Allin; Jue Jun Lu; Maria Scott; Serena Cooke

Testimonials

DLA stands out for its vast cross-jurisdictional capacity.

DLA Piper has a strong London-based international arbitration practice and an extensive international network of offices that it can draw on for resources in different jurisdictions; and the quality of its work is as good as you will receive from any of the top international law firms – and in some cases better.

Very knowledgeable and experienced in disputes involving the CIS.

The team provided regular updates, and provided us with a lot of well- researched information concerning our matter.

The individuals were very competent and polite, and equally hardworking and timely in approaching issues.

Philip Chong is a strategic thinker who is able to marshal the law and the facts to find effective arguments for his clients.

Kate Cervantes-Knox is a standout partner with deep knowledge of arbitral procedure and the ability to get into the meat of the case quickly and efficiently.

Christina Lawrence is extremely knowledgeable and effective at working on disputes involving Russia and/or the CIS.

Key clients

Gazprom

Mining and minerals Tier 3

DLA Piper has a reputable national practice which has ‘knowledge of all aspects of minerals law and the minerals industry’ and is led by Sheffield-based Petra Billing. The group handles significant cross-border work and acts for sovereign states, including the Republic of Guinea, and large companies such as Tata Steel UK. Birmingham-based Roger Collier is also a key member of the group, with over two decades of experience in mineral exploration and acquisition matters. In London, Sarah Thomas handles non-contentious construction mandates, including mining projects.

Practice head(s):

Petra Billing

Other key lawyers:

Sarah Thomas; Roger Collier

Testimonials

‘DLA has expertise and knowledge of all aspects of minerals law and the minerals industry, which enables them to provide exceptional, relevant and highly practical and reliable advice. They have shown great flexibility in interfacing with our internal case management system. The minerals team at DLA feels like an extension of our internal teams and all advisers are highly respected and trusted. They have a great commercial understanding and awareness and this is reflected in their approach, which is tailored and proportionate to the commercial reality and risks of each situation.’

‘Roger Collier and Petra Billing both provide advice in a timely and efficient manner and it is always highly practical and well catered to the relevant audience. Both feel like an extension of our in-house legal and estates teams and are very highly regarded by our business – they are truly trusted and respected advisers.’

Experts in this specialist area – very practical and commercial in their approach, and a joy to work with.’

’Petra Billing is very bright, commercially astute and knows the area inside out. Great fun to work with.’

Key clients

Aggregate Industries ( UK ) Limited/ LafargeHolcim

Tarmac/CRH PLC

Imerys Minerals Limited

Ibstock PLC

Sibelco UK

RecyCoal

Tata Steel UK Limited

Syrah Resources

Government of Kenya

The Coal Authority

Republic of Guinea

Cemex UK Operations Limited

Property finance Tier 3

DLA Piper's 'solution-driven and efficient' team has particular strength in complex cross-border mandates and sports stadium finance. Toby Barker leads the UK real estate finance practice, with expertise in complex cross-border portfolio financings. Paul Gray is also active in pan-European finance, focusing on leveraged real estate and structured finance transactions, and is also active in the sports arena. Chris Chan advises on many property asset classes and sectors, including hotels and leisure, commercial, retail, residential and student accommodation.

Practice head(s):

Toby Barker

Other key lawyers:

Paul Gray; Chris Chan

Testimonials

‘The team has a strong knowledge of the law and the real estate market. They always provide invaluable answers to difficult commercial or legal questions. The team is very well organised and very well managed, solution driven, efficient and transparent.’

‘Strong knowledge of clients’ needs, reliability, professional setup and excellent work quality, not overpriced, friendly and commercially thinking people.’

‘The partner involvement and breadth of experience speaks to the advantages of having DLA Piper as our legal counsel. I have lawyers in various jurisdictions all across Europe and DLA’s service and commitment to providing us with the best service has been second to none. The level of detail that DLA goes into is above and beyond expectations, is delivered with great communication and is always timely. I have pushed DLA many times to deliver some urgent matters and no matter the timeline I am always greeted with professional, complete and detailed advice.’

‘The commitment to excellent client service stands out in this firm. Once a relationship is built, DLA maintains that relationship going forward. Toby Barker has come through for my company time and time again as we have been presented with challenging milestones this past year, navigating through the financial difficulties that Covid-19 has presented. Being able to know you can revert to someone and get the right answer the first time is an invaluable resource to have.’

‘Toby Barker is very responsive, friendly and a professional partner with a great understanding of his client’s needs. He thinks commercial and does not show off in meetings like other firm’s partners do.’

Key clients

Aareal Bank AG

Aerium

AIB

Allianz

AMRO Partners

ARA Venn

Ares

Aviva

AXA Investments

Bain Capital

Bank Leumi

Barings Real Estate Advisers

Brookfield Asset Management

Cabot Properties

Cheyne Capital

Credit Suisse AG

Deutsche Bank

DRC

Edyn (formerly Saco)

Generali

Goldman Sachs

GULF

Harel Insurance Company

Harrison Street

Hermes

HIG

HSBC

ICG Longbow

ING

Invesco

Investec Bank plc

Kildare

KKR

LaSalle Investment Management

Laxfield

Mace

Lloyds Bank

M&G

Mount Street Mortgage Servicing Limited

Och Ziff

Oval Real Estate

Oxford Properties

Round Hill

Royal Bank of Scotland

Sabadell

Sanne

Santander

Shaftesbury

SMBC

Solutus Advisors Limited

Tyndaris

Property litigation Tier 3

DLA Piper is well placed to handle disputes across the residential, office, leisure and logistics sectors, with recent examples of its work including service charge disputes, Covid-19-related matters and lease disputes. Other regular work lies at the intersection with finance, corporate and commercial real estate. Solicitor advocate and fully accredited CEDR mediator Ian Brierley heads the practice and complements this offering with expertise in development-related work. This, in turn, is behind the team's strong track record in joint venture development-related disputes in particular. The group generates mandates from landlords, developers, private equity houses and investment management firms. Senior associate James MacDonald-Pearce is recommended for rights to light matters.

Practice head(s):

Ian Brierley

Other key lawyers:

James MacDonald-Pearce; Peter Fletcher

Testimonials

Great collegial attitude that makes the client feel like DLA is in your corner and part of the home team.

Ian Brierley has extensive subject matter knowledge and experience – he always provides a reassuring presence and has the enviable ability to up his game every time things appear to get tougher.

James McDonald-Pearce has good property knowledge and commercial sense.

Good general property litigation reputation.

Understanding and sympathetic team.

Know our business and jump straight into action when required.

Ian Brierley is right at the top of the tree for property litigation in the UK.

Public international law Tier 3

In addition to acting for clients in investor-state disputes, DLA Piper's London team advises states and companies on Brexit-related matters, which are led by Paul Hardy. Other notable drivers of work include maritime boundary disputes, immunity issues and treaty matters. The group houses practitioners such as investment treaty expert Kate Cervantes-Knox and John Forrest, who is knowledgeable about export controls, sanctions and international trade law. Senior consultant Scott Horton is another key individual, as is of counsel Ben Sanderson, who splits his time between the London and Madrid offices. Legal director Elinor Thomas is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Paul Hardy

Other key lawyers:

Kate Cervantes-Knox; John Forrest; Scott Horton; Ben Sanderson; Elinor Thomas

Testimonials

Large firm, with appropriate resources and coverage, but has a small-firm feel in terms of careful oversight and detailed approach.

Excellent public international law capabilities.

First-rate team of lawyers with depth of expertise and breadth of experience.

Very good client management.

Of counsel Ben Sanderson combines an extensive and impressive practice in public international law and arbitration matters, as well as an exceptionally deep academic understanding of public international law. In that regard, not only he is a veteran practitioner, but he is also equal to international law academics of the highest profile.

Key clients

Republic of Kenya

Republic of Guinea

Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste

Gazprom

Government of Ghana

Hungary

Thailand

Turkcell

Lithuania

INTERPOL

United Kingdom – Foreign & Commonwealth Office and Department for International Trade

Securitisation Tier 3

'The lawyers distinguish themselves by tackling challenges through a unique combination of creativity and knowledge,' say clients of DLA Piper, who note that the practice is 'always very approachable and fully dedicated to its clients'. The firm frequently assists multinational banks and financial investors in growth securitisation markets. Martin Bartlam, who is international head of finance and projects, and Mark Dwyer, who is global co-chair of financial services, are the key partners. Bartlam, who assisted Santander Consumer Bank in Austria with its first publicly listed and rated securitisation, is 'imaginative, resourceful and a real pleasure to work with'. Vincent Keaveny is a leading adviser to banks, financial institutions and corporate clients in the UK and internationally. Ronan Mellon is highly rated for CLOs and Steven Krivinskas is an accomplished structured debt partner who handles consumer loans, auto loans and leases, and commercial mortgage-backed transactions. Legal director Marcus Lovatt is also a key member of the practice.

Practice head(s):

Martin Bartlam; Mark Dwyer

Other key lawyers:

Vincent Keaveny; Ronan Mellon; Steven Krivinskas; Marcus Lovatt; Leigh Ferris

Testimonials

‘DLA Piper’s lawyers distinguish themselves by tackling challenges through a unique combination of creativity and knowledge. They are always very approachable and fully dedicated to their clients.’

‘Marcus Lovatt and Vincent Keaveny are both outstanding lawyers who are thoughtful, composed and solution-oriented. They go the extra mile and are always extremely well prepared and appreciated by their clients.’

‘Martin Bartlam, Marcus Lovatt, and Leigh Ferris make a strong, expert, committed team. They are imaginative, resourceful and a real pleasure to work with.’

‘Their team demonstrates exceptional professionalism, client-oriented approach and exceptional understanding of clients’ needs. Not only was their legal knowledge a great help for us, but also their business-oriented approach allowed us to go smoothly through very complicated transaction. Excellent counsellors.’

‘I worked with several law firms and, so far, Steven Krivinskas from DLA Piper London is the best counsel I had the pleasure to work with. He demonstrates the exceptional work ethic, wide knowledge and understanding of client’s business needs. What makes him unique is also time reaction. It seems as if he works all the time.’

‘A comprehensive team with far-ranging experience across sub-asset classes within securitisation.’

‘Steven Krivinskas is a top lawyer providing clear, concise advice on private securitisation structures. Always very efficient and to the point which helps keep costs down but at the same time giving good advice for his clients.’

‘Martin Bartlam is very responsive and knowledgeable. They way in which they tackle our transactions complements the way that we work.’

Key clients

PKO Leasing Spolka akcyjna

Accunia Fondsmæglerselskab A/S

Viola Credit Five Management 2015 Ltd

Sport Tier 3

At DLA Piper, Nick Fitzpatrick co-chairs the global media, sports and entertainment sector group from London; the team has a particular focus on sponsorship, digital broadcasting, copyright affairs and media rights work.

Practice head(s):

Nick Fitzpatrick

Acquisition finance Tier 4

Led on the leveraged finance front  in London by Toby Barker and aided by a strong regional presence, the 'outstanding' team at DLA Piper provides 'timely and commercially sensitive advice' to a balanced roster of sponsor, corporate and lender clients, particularly on mandates within the mid-market. As well as benefiting from strong traditional banking relationships, the team also has a fairly vibrant direct lending offering, an area in which Andy Kolacki is particularly well-versed.

Practice head(s):

Toby Barker

Other key lawyers:

Mark Dwyer; Matt Christmas; Andy Kolacki; Bryony Widdup; Neil Campbell; Mei Mei Wong; Richard Normington

Testimonials

The outstanding team provides timely and commercially sensitive advice which reflects up-to-date market practice. In addition they are just a wonderful and friendly team to work with.’

Mark Dwyer and Mei Mei Wong are accessible and very intelligent and capable lawyers. In addition, they comprehensively understand our company, which means that we can always rely on them to not only deliver strategic advice on the matter at hand, but also to consider with us the wider implications for the group.

Key clients

Discovery Communications LLC

Heineken UK

VEON Holdings BV

LivaNova plc

Workspace Group Plc

Preem AB

Keller Group plc

Biffa plc

Neqsol Holdings Limited

Hayfin Capital Management Limited

John Menzies plc

PrJSC VF Ukraine (Vodafone Ukraine)

PrJSC Kyivstar

Concord

Together Financial Services Limited

SThree plc

NMC Health plc

InfraRed Capital Partners Limited

HICL Infrastructure plc

Banglalink Telecom

Compre Holdings Limited

Mothercare plc

Duke Street

Sun European Partners

Administrative and public law Tier 4

DLA Piper‘s ‘approachable and efficient’ team has broad public law experience, covering contentious and non-contentious matters, with a particular focus on procurement litigation. The team is also well regarded for its regulatory work for private and public sector clients across various sectors, which includes advising clients on the impact of Brexit on operations in the UK. Paul Stone is known for his expertise in major transport projects, both on the contentious and regulatory side while 'highly experienced and capable lawyer' Martyn Scott stands out for his strong track record in procurement litigation. ‘Outstanding’ senior associate Jonathan Blunden specialises in advising central government on lawful policymaking; he is also active in judicial reviews, procurement litigation and public inquiries.

Practice head(s):

Paul Stone

Other key lawyers:

Jonathan Blunden; Martyn Scott

Testimonials

‘Excellent. One of the best firms that I have worked with in this area. They have real depth of experience and resources to deliver an excellent service.’

‘DLA Piper is exceptionally positive and forward thinking in valuing and developing its pro bono partnership with our charitable organisation in supporting strategic public law challenges.’

‘Jonathan Blunden is a very knowledgeable and able senior associate with an impressive depth of knowledge of public law and government administration.’

‘Jonathan Blunden is outstanding. He is really easy to work with, responsive and incredibly hardworking.’

‘Paul Stone is a great team leader. He has a gentle manner but inspires confidence and is highly capable.’

‘The team is user friendly, approachable and efficient.’

‘Martyn Scott has led the team on two cases that I have worked on and I could not speak more highly of him. A highly experienced and capable lawyer.’

Key clients

Department of Health and Social Care – NHS Test and Trace

Department for Transport

Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy – Magnox Inquiry

Electronic Collar Manufacturer Association and Petsafe Limited

Heineken UK Limited

Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority

Ocean Outdoor UK Limited

National Deaf Children’s Society

Bank lending: investment grade debt and syndicated loans Tier 4

Benefiting from 'strength at all levels, from partners to juniors' and also able to resource matters utilising practitioners from across its regional network of offices, should the need arise, DLA Piper is able to provide 'a very cost-effective' service to blue-chip corporates and lenders across the full range and lifecycle of domestic and international lending transactions. Praised for his  'sensible and measured advice', global co-chair of financial services Mark Dwyer is a trusted advisor to numerous blue-chip corporates across the gamut of their financing requirements. 'Thoughtful and commercial' legal director Mei Mei Wong regularly works alongside Dwyer on corporate lending transactions for borrower clients, as well as regularly advising commercial banking clients on syndicated finance transactions.

Practice head(s):

Mark Dwyer; Toby Barker; Matt Christmas

Other key lawyers:

Andy Kolacki; Bryony Widdup; Neil Campbell; Mei Mei Wong; Richard Normington

Testimonials

Very hands on team with great partner engagement. Strength in all levels from partners to juniors. Very cost effective.’

The DLA team is outstanding and wonderful and friendly to work with.’

‘The extremely analytical Mark Dwyer seems to have an encyclopedic knowledge on almost any type of financing that a financial services firm may encounter as well as the market colour on any given issue encountered. He explains the background and perspectives of both borrower and lender succinctly and with ease and his advice is commercial and pragmatic.’

Mark Dwyer is focused on finding solutions and achieving the best for his client and always provides sensible and measured advice.’

Mei Mei Wong is a pleasure to deal with – very approachable and extremely good from a technical perspective. Mei Mei has excellent analytical skills, is extremely detail orientated and always provides sound advice which is credible, thoughtful and commercial.’

Key clients

Discovery Communications LLC

Heineken UK

VEON Holdings BV

LivaNova plc

Workspace Group plc

Preem AB

Keller Group plc

Biffa plc

Neqsol Holdings Limited

Hayfin Capital Management Limited

John Menzies plc

PrJSC VF Ukraine (Vodafone Ukraine)

PrJSC Kyivstar

Concord

Together Financial Services Limited

SThree plc

NMC Health plc

InfraRed Capital Partners Limited

HICL Infrastructure plc

Banglalink Telecom

Compre Holdings Limited

Mothercare plc

Duke Street

Sun European Partners

Competition litigation Tier 4

DLA Piper's 'creative and energetic' competition group is best known for its work in the pharmaceutical sector, where it represents multinational companies such as Lupin Limited and Merck KGaA, though the team is experienced in a range of disputes. Sarah Smith, who was appointed as the head of the department in 2020, has a niche capability in handling ‘pay for delay’ cases before the European and English courts.

Practice head(s):

Sarah Smith

Other key lawyers:

Sam Szlezinger; Alexandra Kamerling

Testimonials

Experienced team of competition litigators; creative and energetic; focused client service. Usually put together teams involving competition specialists and litigators working side by side.’

Sarah Smith – highly experienced specialist.

Key clients

Merck

Lupin

Heineken

Premier League

Molson Coors

Stanton Bonna / Consolis Group

Football Dataco

Ecolab

Discovery Communications

Corporate restructuring & insolvency Tier 4

Led from London by Chris Parker, and also able to draw from substantial global resources, DLA Piper's seven-partner team provides 'clear and commercial advice' to IPs and banks on domestic and cross-border restructuring and insolvency mandates. The firm also boasts a sizeable and growing presence within the special situations/distressed investment market, particularly since the arrival of the 'impressive and entrepreneurial' David Manson , who has hit-the-ground running since his arrival in April 2020 from  Paul Hastings LLP , generating a slew of cross-border mandates for funds in the mid-market and large cap space.

Practice head(s):

Chris Parker

Other key lawyers:

David Manson; David Ampaw; Neil Riley; Peter Manley; Rowan Aspinwall

Testimonials

They know the law and are able to provide commercial, focused advice in an efficient, user-friendly manner.’

‘The team is focused on innovative and creative solutions at the forefront of the law as it develops. The lawyers are very commercial and aware of the drivers for their clients and other players in the market.’

Always provide clear and commercial advice in a friendly and prompt way.’

‘The broad capabilities, strength-in-depth of the team and international capabilities ensure they are able to provide advice across a wide spectrum of distressed situations.’

‘The impressive and entrepreneurial David Manson is very commercial and hands on when he needs to be. He has a strong understanding of commercial drivers and the state of the market.’

Neil Riley listens, gives considered advice and challenges appropriately.’

‘David Ampaw is exceptionally user-friendly, delivering robust and commercial advice in a calm and friendly way.’

Key clients

Alvarez & Marsal

Kyma Capital

Deloitte

EY

FTI Consulting

GLAS

Hilco Capital

HSBC

KPMG

PwC

Environment Tier 4

DLA Piper secured a major boost with the July 2021 addition of Nicholas Rock, who joined from Reed Smith LLP as international co-head of safety, health and environment and product compliance. He now jointly leads the practice with Teresa Hitchcock, who splits her time between London and Sheffield, offering expertise in contaminated land, regeneration projects and nuisance disputes. The wider team handles both contentious and non-contentious environmental matters, ranging from advising on regulatory compliance and changes to responding to regulator investigations. The practice negotiates with the Environment Agency, handles environmental due diligence on real estate transactions and provides product-related advice.

Practice head(s):

Nicholas Rock; Teresa Hitchcock

Key clients

Tarmac Services Limited

Tata Steel UK Limited

Mothercare Global Brands

Pfizer Inc

BASF

Pilkington Technology Management Limited

EU and competition Tier 4

DLA Piper's competition team works closely with the firm's corporate department to assist with merger filings necessary for M&A transactions. The practice also collaborates with the firm's various industry groups, allowing it to develop close relationships with clients from sectors including retail, food and drink and aviation . Sarah Smith, in addition to leading the team, represents clients in appeals at the Competition Appeal Tribunal against the CMA's decisions. The team was recently bolstered by the arrival of Matt Evans, formerly the head of Jones Day's competition practice, who arrived in June 2021.

Practice head(s):

Sarah Smith

Other key lawyers:

Matt Evans; Sam Szlezinger; Alexandra Kamerling

Testimonials

Sarah Smith has good knowledge and understanding of the Retail sector, meaning her advice is more practical and commercial than that of other firms. She’s proactive about letting us know about relevant developments/news.

‘When the CMA contacts your business as part of an investigation, you want a lawyer in your corner that is calm, knowledgeable, responsive and pragmatic. Sam Szlezinger is all of those things in abundance. I have never worked with a competition lawyer like him. He is head and shoulders above anyone else I have instructed in the past’

The team are very responsive and efficient at dealing with queries. You know you will get a prompt response to questions and it is helpful when managing timing expectations with the business. The London team has good links with its overseas offices and other associated firms, which is helpful for navigating multi-jurisdictional projects.

The team is appropriately resourced, with good associate-level support and engagement.

 

Key clients

ASOS

CBRE

Consolis Group

Discovery Communications

Ecolab Inc.

Eisai

Football DataCo

Heineken UK

HSBC plc

INEOS

John Menzies

LEGO

Link Group

Lupin

Ministry of Defence

Merck

Newell Brands

Rolls Royce

SDE

SDL plc

Suppliers Assessment Services Ltd

Franchising Tier 4

DLA Piper acts for a range of household names on commercial matters and contract reviews. Global co-chair of the hospitality and leisure practice Matthew Duncombes heads the team and is well versed in acting for hotel clients. The practice combines expertise in real estate, restructuring and private equity to provide franchising advice to international clients.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Duncombe

Testimonials

‘The practice sits on years of worldwide experience in the area of franchising; for a rapidly expanding globally operating franchise business it is essential to tap into this knowledge base.’

‘They do not only share their legal knowledge, but also practical and commercial experiences.’

Key clients

Marriott Hotels

Redmayne Bentley

InterIKEA

Pizza Hut

Hilton

Selecta TMP

Intercontinental

Merlin / Madame Tussauds

Amaris Hospitality

Sytner

Bacardi

Noa

Williams Sonoma

Prada

Ralph Lauren

Sodexo

Yotel

Life sciences and healthcare Tier 4

DLA Piper's life sciences team has had an impressive year, working with major clients including Unilever as they grappled with the implications of the global pandemic, while also advising the UK Government on its COVID track-and-trace app. The group is led by IP, tech and commercial partner Richard Taylor, who splits his time between London, Sheffield and Birmingham. Other key names include Andrew Dyson, who co-chairs the firm’s global data protection, privacy and security group, and Mark Vipan, who focuses on IT contracts, outsourcing and other commercial agreements.

Practice head(s):

Richard Taylor

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Dyson; Mark Vipan; Mark Dewar; John Pryor; Teresa Hitchcock; Jonathan Exten-Wright

Testimonials

‘It’s been a difficult year, and DLA Piper have supported us throughout on some of the largest and innovative projects. Their willingness to keep up to date and deliver on niche areas of the public health IT sector is what sets them apart from competitors. Team members have continued to be proactive in their research, advice and support. DLA Piper have also provided excellent added value support with a trainee swap during this period, and are very proactive in seeking to support on new models and thinking.’

‘Strong, focused, determined lawyers.’

‘Mark Vipan has gone above and beyond to understand our key business needs. Primarily, this involves providing excellent tailored legal advice while keeping a careful eye on the public sector purse. He has consistently provided all-round support.’

‘Richard Taylor is always polite and respectful, even when the other side is attempting to provoke.’

‘They provide excellent, pragmatic but considered data protection advice.’

Product liability: defendant Tier 4

DLA Piper's offering includes advisory, corporate investigation and defence services, and its work is often of cross-border nature. Here, it works closely with offices within the firm's international network. The team is regularly instructed by corporate clients from a variety of industries, including manufacturing and consumer goods. Teresa Hitchcock leads the Sheffield-based group; she is noted for her broad practice, which covers product safety, food safety, health and safety law, and the regulatory aspects of healthcare.

Practice head(s):

Teresa Hitchcock

Other key lawyers:

Alastair Clough; Taryn Jones

Testimonials

‘I have worked with Teresa over several years on product safety and regulatory matters. Her technical knowledge, judgement, and tactical and strategic skills are second to none. Her particular strengths are the ability to hone in on the heart of the issue in the midst of heightened crises, her credibility with C-suite board members and her no-nonsense, matter-of-fact yet warm style. She extinguishes nerves and charts a pragmatic path through regulatory mazes, blended with commercial and operational approaches that salvage customer and stakeholder trust.’

Key clients

LG Electronics Inc

Arconic Inc.

Regulatory investigations and corporate crime (advice to corporates) Tier 4

DLA Piper demonstrates strength in providing proactive risk management advice to large corporate clients and financial institutions. The team is adept at assisting with matters involving misconduct allegations relating to bribery and corruption, fraud, and money laundering. The group’s recent workload also testifies to its ability to handle complex compliance issues and conduct internal investigations; Patrick Rappo is a go-to adviser in this space. The department is jointly led by Tony Katz, the firm’s money laundering reporting officer, and Sam Millar, who also leads the European white-collar group.

Practice head(s):

Tony Katz; Sam Millar

Other key lawyers:

Patrick Rappo; Will White; Lizzy Bullock

Testimonials

‘A strong practice with a supreme offering.’

Key clients

Thomas Kalaris

Arconic Architectural Products Sas

Venture capital Tier 4

While DLA Piper handles a noticeable amount of traditional venture capital work for investees and institutional investors, its core strength lies in its representation of corporate venturers, both on fund formation and pursuant downstream investments. Particular sector strengths include the TMT, sports and media industries, and clients also benefit from access to the firm's vast global network of offices, as well as a dedicated online resource for entrepreneurs through the firm's Accelerate offering. London corporate group head Jon Kenworthy handles a significant amount of venture capital work throughout the investment life cycle and is a key member of the team that also includes Luca Gori, whose strength includes work for private equity and venture capital investors.

Practice head(s):

Jon Kenworthy; Luca Gori

Other key lawyers:

Dylan Kennett; Tim Harding

Testimonials

‘Luca Gori has built a team of professionals at varying levels who all deeply understand us as a client: what makes us tick, what we need, what we want and how we work.’

‘Great communication and collaboration, alongside strong market knowledge.’

‘Luca Gori is the consummate professional and the only UK lawyer we trust with our corporate venture capital work. Even when work is shared throughout his team he is always available and always on it. He has won over our internal legal team, our VC team and target companies alike.’

‘Always helpful and collaborative in their dealings. Transparent and real-time communication across important items.’

Key clients

Edison Partners

Eldridge Industries

EQT Ventures

ABHH

Rugby Football Union

Zilico

Otsuka Pharmaceutical Development & Commercialization

Organigram Holdings

Durable Capital Partners

Samsung Ventures

Corporate tax Tier 5

DLA Piper advises on a broad range of domestic and international corporate, real estate and finance tax issues. Real estate is a key focus for the team and Richard Woolich leads the work in this area. Ben Brown co-heads the practice alongside Woolich and advises on corporate and finance transactions.

Practice head(s):

Ben Brown; Richard Woolich

Other key lawyers:

Maud Murcia

Testimonials

Richard was very good at brainstorming ideas with me, which was very helpful in preparing for Court. He is also excellent in understanding the clients’ commercial needs and in explaining in client friendly terms what the various choices and issues during litigation are. Maud Murcia is an efficient and hardworking associate.’

Really strong set of partners, with Richard Woolich the standout individual.’

The team is very professional and the advice given is very good.’

Fraud: white-collar crime (advice to individuals) Tier 5

As ‘a very easy firm to deal with’, DLA Piper has a strong track record in contentious regulatory matters and investigations into alleged bribery and corruption, money laundering and market manipulation, among others. The group is also able to draw on the experience of its civil fraud colleagues. The team is equally comfortable acting for potential suspects and witnesses; it has a particular strength in SFO matters, as reflected in the expertise of Patrick Rappo, a former head of the bribery and corruption divisions at the SFO. Tony Katz and Sam Millar share leadership of the department.

Practice head(s):

Tony Katz; Sam Millar

Other key lawyers:

Patrick Rappo; Will White

Testimonials

‘DLA is a very easy firm to deal with. There are no displays of arrogance or pretension, and you feel that the lawyers are truly focused on the matter in hand, rather than drawing things out. This is refreshing. DLA is a truly global firm. The London office is welcoming, well-located and comfortable and there is a general sense of level-headedness and having both feet on the ground.’

‘I have been working with Sam Millar and Will White at DLA. Both have impressed me. They are extremely knowledgeable and patient and very keen to put their client’s interest first. They do not speak just to be heard and only intervene or communicate when appropriate. Sam is well-connected within the industry.’

Shipping Tier 5

DLA Piper is able to tap into the resources across its global network of offices to advise on multijurisdictional litigation, including disputes related to ship financing, charterparties and cargo. The main contact in London is Linos Choo, who is praised by clients as being 'quick, professional and efficient'. Choo counts lenders, commodities companies, and shipowners among his clients. In addition to handling contentious matters, he also provides advice on shipbuilding and shipping transactions.

Practice head(s):

Linos Choo

Testimonials

‘DLA Piper is quick, professional and efficient.’

‘We work with Linos Choo and are fully satisfied with his work.’

‘Exceptionally well connected, client-oriented and very practical – offering precise and cost conscious advice aimed at swift and efficient resolution of the client’s issues.’

‘Linos Choo embodies all the best traits of the practice he leads.’

Key clients

Rabobank

Petronas Lubricants International Sdn Bhd

Zopco SA

Transport finance and leasing Tier 5

Led from London by Alan Cunningham and also able to leverage resources across an extensive global network, DLA Piper's 'proactive and commercially driven' three-partner team is well-positioned to advise a fairly balanced roster of banks, lessors and airlines on their cross-border financing/leasing activity, from both a new money and restructuring perspective. As well as work in the commercial aviation sector, Cunningham also remains active for lenders and high-net-worth individuals in relation to corporate jet and superyacht financings.

Practice head(s):

Alan Cunningham

Other key lawyers:

Richard Skipper; Rebecca Williams; Claire Manley; Anna Powers; Alison Balfour

Testimonials

The team always looks for the best interest of the client. They will advise with any information and very clear view on any decisions.’

Coordination and breadth of sector and jurisdictional offering – make DLA Piper stand out.’

The team is strong in all asset finance and leasing areas providing very useful synergies.’

They are proactive and commercially driven.’

Richard Skipper has a subtle non-combative approach which is particularly valuable in moving transactions forward in a harmonious way for all parties concerned.’

Key clients

Investec Bank

British Airways

Flybe Limited

Austrian Airlines

Flyr AS

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

DLA Piper’s high-value private equity team has a particular focus on advising management teams on exits, buy-outs, investments, and mergers, frequently advising on large, high profile deals. The team also has a significant mid-market practice, acting on mandates from PE houses as well as portfolio companies. Tim Wright leads the London team and the broader European practice, while Ed Griffiths has over 25 years experience in this sector, with a particular focus on the technology sector. The firm has recently strengthened its practice with the addition of the well-regarded Piero Carbone from McDermott.

Practice head(s):

Tim Wright

Other key lawyers:

Ed Griffiths; Piero Carbone

Testimonials

‘The team are very pro-active in their approach. The DLA team spent time with us to ensure we had the right knowledge to ensure that when the time came, we made the right decision.’

‘They really delivered. The team was always available and working in perfect coordination.’

‘The team invested significant time and effort to deeply understand our personal needs and build strong professional relationships to provide a foundation for the engagement. They were flexible and practical about what we needed in terms of coaching and reassurance to put us in a position as a team get what we needed. They responded quickly and efficiently whenever we needed them.’

‘Tim Wright is passionate, commercial, and intelligent. Always determined to get to the nub of any issue and resolve it pragmatically. A super strong negotiator.’

‘The involvement of senior partners really made a difference. Rest of the team very professional and delivering over expectations.’

‘Tim Wright led a great team through a very complex transaction with each team member leading their workstream while never losing touch of the bigger picture.’

Key clients

Kirkbi

L Catterton

Cube

IFS Group management team

Neuraxpharm management team

CPA Global management team

Ascot Lloyd management team

Capcomanagemen

Global Co-Chairs: Roger Meltzer and Andrew Darwin
Co-Chief Executive Officers: Simon Levine and Cameron Jay Rains
Number of partners: 1,500
Number of lawyers: 5,000
Languages: The firm speaks over 60 languages
Offices: Lawyers located in more than 60 countries throughout the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific.

Please see https://www.dlapiper.com for further information about the firm.

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The Lex 100 Verdict

DLA Piper ‘strives to be the leading global business law firm’. The ‘international aspect’ of the work and clients was one of the main motivations for applying, as were the multiple training locations in London, Birmingham, Sheffield, Manchester, Leeds and Edinburgh. A ‘supportive and collaborative culture’ pervades and trainees at DLA ‘feel like valued members of the team’ and are ‘generally given a lot of responsibility with a good amount of supervision’. The people are ‘very nice and easy to get along with’, although it was noted that it is currently ‘hard to get to know people because of working remotely’. The work/life balance has also suffered for the same reason. Nevertheless, DLA Piper has scooped up two Lex 100 Winner awards this year for international secondments and vacation scheme. The firm’s ‘commitment to diversity and inclusion sets it apart’ and deserves a special mention. ‘Working on a deal concerning a national government, which was all over the news’, ‘going on client secondment’ and ‘running a signing meeting on a large deal with another associate’ were some of the tasks which trainees savoured the most. Worst moments included ‘being given the task of producing a big electronic bundle at 5pm which needed to be done by the next morning’, ‘working consistently past midnight in the run-up to a closing’ and ‘the induction to the firm and to my team having to take place virtually because of Covid’. On the upside, at least recruits are ‘having catch-up sessions every week to make sure we maintain the social aspect of being a trainee’. For a firm with a global footprint without compromising on a collegiate atmosphere, consider DLA Piper.