- UK :
- Senior Partner: William Lawes
- Managing Partner: Ted Burke
- Executive Partner: Stephan Eilers
- Number of partners: 440
- Number of lawyers: 2500
THE FIRM Freshfields is a commercially savvy, innovative law firm that can help you navigate the most complex business issues, wherever and whenever they arise. The firm has a worldwide team with over 2,500 lawyers working hard to understand your business needs. The teams apply their experience and local knowledge to make sure you get the best possible outcome. It was the official legal services provider to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, working on legal issues to deliver the world’s largest peacetime events.
PRINCIPAL AREAS OF WORK Freshfields’ practice groups are organised to cover the most relevant areas for clients: antitrust, competition and trade; corporate; dispute resolution – including environment, planning and regulatory and global investigations – employment, pensions and benefits; finance; IP/IT; real estate; and tax. The firm has a particularly strong international focus. It has advised on more cross-border M&A deals over the past five years than any other law firm. It has active cases worth $80bn involving complex civil litigation, arbitration and white collar defence. The firm also handled one of the largest investment treaty arbitration cases ever filed, worth around $30bn. Lawyers from different practices work together across the firm to tailor their advice for clients in particular sectors. These include consumer and healthcare, energy and natural resources and financial institutions, including insurance. The groups also focus on general industrial, infrastructure and transport, leisure, private equity, real estate, and telecoms, media and technology.
CLIENTS Clients turn to Freshfields when the pressure is on and they can’t afford to take risks. For example, Freshfields counselled the EU, Germany, Ireland and the UK through the financial crisis. The firm’s clients say that Freshfields has five main strengths beyond its core legal skills:
• a winning track-record on mandates that matter to them;
• business-relevant judgement and know-how to support their decision-making;
• unparalleled international delivery and teamwork;
• great people understanding; and
• absolute client commitment.
INTERNATIONAL Freshfields’ worldwide approach is founded on strong local capabilities and global experience. The firm has over 2,500 lawyers in 27 offices around the world. As well its centres across Europe, Freshfields has offices in Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Beijing, Dubai, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Hong Kong, New York, Riyadh (through a strategic alliance with the Law Firm of Salah Al- Hejailan), Shanghai, Tokyo and Washington, DC. It also has a regional focus on central and eastern Europe, Latin America and Israel, so it can put together multi-skilled worldwide teams at short notice. Partner and associate country teams develop relationships with selected law firms, financial institutions, intermediaries and government agencies so that they can offer you the best legal advice anywhere in the world. Around a third of the firm’s work is in countries where it does not have an office, including some of the world’s most challenging legal environments.
RECRUITMENT Freshfields has a strong diversity policy. It actively recruits employees with a range of perspectives and experiences. There is a strong belief at Freshfields that ability and talent drive progression, not background, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, age or impairment. The firm makes sure that clients are always matched with lawyers who have the skills and experience for their particular business. Lawyers are encouraged to participate in the firm’s client secondment programme. It also invests heavily in training and development to build specific industry knowledge and technical skills so that it can adapt to the changing needs of clients and markets.