Firm Profile > DLA Piper > Edinburgh, Scotland

DLA Piper
RUTLAND SQUARE
EDINBURGH
EH1 2AA
Scotland

IT and telecoms Tier 1

DLA Piper handles major IT projects in the financial services and public sectors. John McKinlay heads up the intellectual property and technology UK (including Scotland) team, and is also convener of the Law Society of Scotland’s technology and law committee. The team handles large outsourcing and complex technology transactions, and also supports the implementation of global data protection compliance projects. Other areas of focus include handling consumer contract matters, IT contracts and IP strategies, including drafting and negotiating outsourcing, procurement, supply and licensing agreements.

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Testimonials

‘I have found Mr McKinlay to be a consummate professional, an expert communicator and extremely knowledgeable’.

‘John McKinlay is able to assess and then address the issues that he is presented with in a consistently skilled and effective manner’.

‘My overall impression of the firm, based largely on my interactions with John McKinlay, is that DLA Piper Scotland LLP is an extremely well run, efficient, knowledgeable and proactive firm’.

Key clients

Innovation Group

Clydesdale Bank plc

Heineken UK

Royal Bank of Scotland plc

Scottish Water

Core HR

The Highland Council

Merlin Entertainments

Menzies Aviation

Element

Underbelly

Banking and finance Tier 2

DLA Piper generates mandates from large international Scotland-headquartered banks, among other notable clients. The team is often instructed by international clients seeking to inwardly invest into Scottish assets. Its sector experience spans areas such as hospitality and leisure, care homes, energy, technology and housebuilding. Practice head David Morton is well regarded for his experience of acting for borrowers and lenders. Senior associate William Reid is also recommended. Stuart McMillan left the firm for Burges Salmon LLP.

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Testimonials

‘Practical / Commercial / Tenacious and just do what needs to be done to get the job done – often helping our customer’s solicitors along the way.’

‘David Morton is easy to work with and quickly gets a handle on any issues that need to be addressed. Always quick to respond and delivers good quality in an efficient time frame.’

 

Key clients

Clydesdale Bank

Lloyds Banking Group

The Royal Bank of Scotland

RBS Invoice Finance Ltd

ICICI Bank

ABN AMRO

Santander

HSBC

Vespa Capital

MAS REI

Harrison Street

Tosca Debt Capital Fund

Energy Ventures

Investec

Equitix

Aviva Investors

NORD/LB

Commercial property: Edinburgh and Glasgow Tier 2

DLA Piper is known for its domestic and international experience acting for developers, property funds, corporate occupiers, student accommodation and retail clients. It also acts for leisure and hospitality clients, including investors, operators and developers of hotels. Drew Wallace, who leads the real estate team, has over 30 years of experience in investment and development. Steve Edgecombe leads the hospitality and leisure team, focusing on transactional issues. Sheila Irvine is recommended for leasing, investment and development work.

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Testimonials

‘Sheila Irvine is easy to build a relationship with and have open and frank conversations. She has an air of calm and professionalism as well as solid credentials and a human approach.’

Key clients

Admiral Taverns

Aggregate Industries  UK plc– procurer and supplier of construction materials

Alba Group

Ambassador Theatre Group

Artisan Real Estate Investors Limited

Aviva

AXA

British Airways

Campus Living

Greencoat

Harrison Street Real Estate

Heineken UK Limited

Henry Boot Developments

Hines Global

LaSalle Investment Management

Ministry of Defence

Odeon Cinemas

Osborne & Co/Vanguard Limited

Places for People

Proprium

RBS

Structured House Group

St Enoch Trustee Company (Blackstone and Sovereign)

St James’s Place

Timpsons

Corporate and commercial: Edinburgh and Glasgow Tier 2

DLA Piper’s Scottish corporate team advises international clients investing in Scotland, as well as domestic clients conducting cross-border transactions. The practice is noted for its experience in M&A, joint ventures, private equity, venture capital deals, and company restructurings and reorganisations. The international firm's Scotland managing partner Simon Rae leads the practice - he is highly regarded for his significant experience across sectors including energy, technology, and food and beverages.

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Key clients

JP Morgan Asset Management International

Business Growth Fund

Energy Ventures

Environmental Energy Fund

Energy Growth Investors

First Reserve

Infrared Capital Partners

Investec Investments UK

Proprium Capital

Secure Trust Bank

Scottish Equity Partners

Royal Bank of Scotland

Prestwick Aviation Holdings

HV Systems

BrewDog PLC

Cimpress (Vistaprint)

Danaher Corporation

Element Group

Fortive Corporation

Heineken UK

Link Mobility

Lockheed Martin

John Menzies plc

Marsh & McLennan

Mavenir

Moneycorp

Moody’s

Omega Advisers Inc

Raytheon Systems

Smartsheet

Sony Corporation

TGS Nopec

Vue International Group

Westwood Global Energy

Wm Grant & Sons

Intellectual property Tier 2

The intellectual property and technology team at DLA Piper handles commercial IP matters for high-profile brands. John McKinlay heads up the practice and represents domestic and international private and public sector clients in contentious IP matters. Catriona Melton joined as senior associate from an in-house role at Vialex; she has experience in non-contentious issues including data protection and regulatory compliance issues. Legal director Ishbel MacPherson left for an in-house role at The University of Edinburgh.

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Key clients

Merlin Entertainments

Nikon

BrewDog

Heineken UK

FA Premier League

SK Chase

Wm Grant & Sons

Underbelly

NHS

Planning Tier 3

DLA Piper is well equipped to guide public and private sector clients through various contentious and non-contentious planning matters, most notably in the housing sector, but also those pertaining to energy and infrastructure projects. Recent work included planning applications and planning obligations, planning appeals, consent orders and judicial reviews. Sandy Telfer heads the practice and covers all aspects of housing, retail and energy developments with niche expertise in onshore unconventional gas.

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Testimonials

DLA contributes to the development of a strategy which most law firms do not. We find most big law firms are too cautious. They will charge large fees to tell us what the law says. Very few are able to say what the law means and how the client should frame their strategy.

Excellent, efficient, professional and successful service.

Great, knowledgeable and achieve results.

We primarily work with Sandy Telfer, who is an expert in planning and property law: strategic thinking. lateral thinking. commercial thinking. strong track record. excellent team player. The service I have received has always been very good. Prompt and focused commercial advice.

Sandy Telfer is very professional and meticulous.

Sandy Telfer takes a holistic approach to any task, very knowledgeable, persuasive and invariably successful.

Key clients

INEOS Upstream Ltd

Perth and Kinross Council

Hallam Land Management Ltd

New Waverley Advisers Ltd

Royal Bank of Scotland plc

Places for People

Henry Boot Developments

Dawnfresh Farming Ltd

Hansteen Land Ltd

Flamingo Land Ltd

Energiekontor UK Ltd

Greencoat Energy

Highways England

Moorbrook Textiles Ltd

Middlemead Properties Ltd

Amber Rei Holding Ltd

Pat Munro (Alness) Ltd

Projects Tier 3

The DLA Piper team is well regarded for its knowledge of the new mutual investment models (MIMs), for which it has been advising the Welsh Government. Lillian Mackenzie is the UK head of projects and she also leads the finance projects and restructuring practice in Scotland. Stuart McMillan left the firm for Burges Salmon LLP.

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Testimonials

‘Sharon Fitzgerald is dedicated and punctual in her commitments’.

‘Sharon is always well prepared and very well-articulated’.        

‘Professional attitude, in-depth knowledge of the Afghan laws and international best practices’.     

‘The team is very responsive to the clients’ needs, and goes above and beyond in communicating and explaining various points’.          

‘Sharon Fitzgerald is very personable and approachable’.

‘Sharon Fitzgerald is very diplomatic and great at diffusing tense situation’.

‘DLA Piper’s team has a great deal of in-depth knowledge and experience in projects, energy and natural resources law’. 

‘Partners are backed up by experienced associates, giving the team a lot of depth.’ 

Key clients

City of Glasgow Council

Welsh Government

Equitix

InfraRed

Green Africa Power

Velindre NHS Trust

Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan

Government of Ghana

National Grid

GE (General Electric)

Lloyds Banking Group

Nord LB

Property litigation Tier 3

Thanks to the firm's global footprint, DLA Piper is well suited to handle both national and international contentious property work across the residential, commercial and retail sectors. With team head Alistair Drummond's expertise extending to contentious construction issues - complementing his experience in commercial property and commercial lease disputes -, the practice also receives regular instructions on disputes arising from property developments and construction projects. Other regular work includes contractual lease, servitude and boundary disputes alongside dilapidation claims.

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Testimonials

The team has been really great, supportive and understanding throughout a difficult litigation process.

Alistair Drummond was very supportive and dealt with my concerns very carefully and in an understanding manner during a difficult litigation process.

Key clients

The Coal Authority

Consort Healthcare (Fife) Limited

Hochtief PPP Solutions (UK) Ltd

Lothian Amusements Ltd

The Edinburgh Woollen Mill

Heineken UK

Lothian Amusements Ltd

Hochtief PPP Solutions (UK) Ltd

Scottish Power Energy Retail Limited

Merlin Entertainments Group Limited

Hilton

Trillium

Commercial litigation Tier 5

DLA Piper has a strong profile for multi-jurisdictional work which frequently pertains to property and construction issues; this is a key areas of expertise for team head Alastair Drummond, who regularly handles commercial property and commercial lease disputes alongside contentious construction issues. Other works includes IP and banking matters, including payment claims and asset recovery.

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Testimonials

The team is approachable and easy to work with. They provide practical advice as and when required. The fees are also at a reasonable rate for this type of work.

Provides practical and easy-to-understand information.

Alistair Drummond understands our business and what we wish to achieve.

Key clients

Airbus Helicopters SAS

Babcock International Group

British Airways

Broad Sands Limited

Chris Stewart Group

The Coal Authority

Consort Healthcare (Fife) Limited

Deloitte

EasyJet Airlines

The Edinburgh Woollen Mill

Element

Emirates

Football Association Premier League

GE

GlaxoSmithKline

Heineken

Hilton

HSBC

KLM

KPMG

Lloyds Banking Group

Lockheed Martin

Lothian Amusements

Marriott Group

Merlin Entertainments Limited

Peak Scientific Instruments Limited

Raytheon

Scottish Police Authority

Scottish Power Energy Retail Limited

Serco

Skanska

Sodexo

Travelodge

Trillium

Turkish Airlines

UBS

The Government of the United Kingdom

Vesuvius UK Ltd

Walker Healthcare Limited

Construction Tier 5

Embedded in the firm's national group, DLA Piper's Scotland team is led by commercial property and construction litigator Alastair Drummond, which translates into particular expertise in the contentious space and into regular instructions arising from construction defects, but the team also handles advisory matters, including construction-related funding and procurement issues.

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Key clients

Caerus Periousia Ltd/ Osborne & Company

Artisan Real Estate UK Ltd

V.R.S. 6 Limited

ABB AB

Consort Healthcare (Fife) Limited

Employment Tier 5

Much of DLA Piper's employment law work is contentious in nature and frequently involves equal pay, discrimination, unfair dismissal and whistleblowing claims, but the team led by Kate Hodgkiss also provides assistance with TUPE transfers, restructuring programmes and senior management exits.

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Testimonials

They understand my business and appetite for risk. Pragmatic solutions.

The team is very good at recognising particular areas of expertise and seeks cross-team collaboration where it is in the client’s bests interests to do so, and to great effect. The team is led by a very experienced partner, Kate Hodgkiss, who really knows what she is talking about and supports others.

I think Kate Hodgkiss is a stand-out individual, who has years of litigation under her belt. When there is a difficult case, she is excellent at explaining risks and realities to clients whilst getting right in the trenches with counsel when the battle commences. She is considerate and informative when she instructs counsel, gets counsel involved sufficiently early on and engaged in key strategic decision making so that what follows is a genuine team effort. She is excellent and instills confidence in others. This is really the experience I have had with the firm as a whole.

Key clients

Aggreko plc

Allurion

Dawnfresh Seafoods

HEINEKEN UK Limited

HSBC

The Scottish Police Authority (SPA)

Scottish Water

CPA Global Management

Charles Taylor plc

Elements Materials Technology

Feilo Sylvania Europe

Hitachi Rail Europe

Pfizer

Skanska

Sodexo

Thomas Murray Network Management Limited

Horizon Discovery Limited

Menzies Aviation Ltd

Smartsheet

VetPartners Limited

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.

Photo Name Position Profile
 Sheila Irvine photo Sheila Irvine
 John McKinlay  photo John McKinlay
 David Morton photo David Morton
 Simon Rae  photo Simon Rae
 William Reid photo William Reid
 Sandy Telfer  photo Sandy Telfer

The Lex 100 Verdict

Global full-service firm and regional giant, DLA Piper taps into its extensive network of international offices to deliver its trainees 'international-level work in local offices around the UK' with locations in Birmingham, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Sheffield, London, and Edinburgh. This quality is applauded by its trainees, with one commenting that 'being able to live and work in Yorkshire, whilst receiving world-class training, made DLA Piper my top-choice firm'. This access to its global network is reflected in the firm securing a Lex 100 Winner award for its international secondments. A trainee highlights that 'the firm really takes care of everything so the transition is as easy as it could be. The quality of work and opportunities whilst on secondment are as good as whilst in the UK'. Trainees describe the firm as 'ambitious and progressive' with a 'strong emphasis on pro-bono and diversity'. They appreciate the 'structured approach to training which provides a solid academic basis within the initial few weeks of a seat, plus a lot of explanation given on the background of tasks which aids understanding. Typically this isn't provided at US firms'. Long hours, 'discrepancy between London pay and regional pay' and 'feeling as though you are a small fish in a very big pond' are common complaints. However, the firm's 'friendly atmosphere' and the quality of its pro-bono opportunities are praised. If you are looking for international work and well-structured training at a leading global firm, DLA Piper is a natural contender.