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Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP

New York

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP - New York
  • Worldwide Plaza
  • 825 Eighth Avenue
  • New York
  • New York
  • USA
  • NY 10019-7475
  • Presiding Partner: C Allen Parker
  • Number of partners worldwide: 87
  • Number of other lawyers worldwide: 354
  • Languages: Arabic, Bengali (India), Bulgarian, Cantonese (Chinese), Czech, Dutch, Farsi (Persian), French, German, Greek, Gujarati (India), Hebrew, Hindi (India), Italian, Japanese, Kannada (India), Korean, Malay, Mandarin (Chinese), Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Spanish, Ukrainian and Urdu (Pakistan)
  • INTERNATIONAL OFFICES The firm also has an office in London.

Firm Overview:
Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP is widely recognized as one of the preeminent law firms in the world. Each of its practices is highly regarded, and its lawyers are recognized for their commitment to the representation of clients’ interests in the US and throughout the world. Cravath was founded in 1819 and maintains offices in New York and London.

Main Areas of Practice:
Corporate:
Clients repeatedly choose Cravath in large and complex matters, particularly with respect to cross-border transactions involving multiple jurisdictions. Cravath’s corporate lawyers advise global businesses in a diverse range of merger and acquisition transactions, including divestitures, spin-offs and joint ventures. The firm is active in both making hostile bids and defending against takeover attempts, based on the combined strength and depth of its corporate and litigation departments. Cravath has a highly regarded US and international securities practice,with lawyers representing issuers and investment banks in all types of US and global offerings. The firm’s commercial banking lawyers regularly represent major financial institutions and borrowers. Cravath’s experience in M&A, securities and commercial banking is a significant advantage for the firm’s clients, whose business concerns often involve all of these areas. A highly regarded group of environmental lawyers at Cravath work with the firm’s clients on matters related to acquisition and disposition strategies, financings and regulatory compliance with respect to a broad range of environmental issues.

Tax:
Cravath’s tax lawyers play an integral role in structuring and negotiating all types of transactions, including mergers, spin-offs, joint ventures, securities offerings, commercial bank facilities and intricate private equity acquisitions and related financings. The Tax Department designs structures for complex domestic and international transactions and has developed innovative types of acquisitions and financings in the US and international markets. In cooperation with tax advisors in other countries, the firm’s tax lawyers work to capture the benefits of differences in the tax law in different regions.

Executive Compensation & Benefits:
Cravath’s ECB Department brings experience and judgment to clients’employee benefits and compensation matters,which are often central concerns in acquisitions, dispositions and other transactions. The firm’s ECB lawyers advise companies, boards of directors, compensation committees and members of senior management in a variety of compensation and benefit arrangements as well as legal compliance concerns.

Litigation:
Cravath is known for the breadth and depth of its litigation experience in such diverse areas of the law as the Alien Tort Claims Act, antitrust, bankruptcy, contracts and commercial disputes, corporate investigations and governance, employment, the Employment Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), intellectual property (patents, trademarks, trade dress, copyrights, trade secrets),mergers and acquisitions, real estate, the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), securities and tax. Cravath litigators are routinely called upon to represent non-US companies in many of the largest and most complex litigations and domestic and international arbitrations (including ICC, LCIA, AAA and private arbitrations), before administrative agencies and regulatory authorities, and in virtually every other type of proceeding, including internal investigations. Cravath litigators handle work involving contested merger and acquisition transactions, while boards of directors and special committees have relied on the firm’s lawyers to guide them through the intricacies of shareholder litigation and government investigations. The firm’s antitrust experience encompasses a wide range of industries, from mining to telecommunications. A significant portion of the firm’s litigation work relates to contracts and commercial disputes, often in the form of business torts as well as other areas of general business litigation. The firm handles a broad range of complex and challenging matters involving intellectual property across all industries, from computers to biotechnology and pharmaceuticals to recording technology. In the area of securities litigation, Cravath is widely recognized for handling complex and often precedent-setting cases.

Trusts & Estates:
The firm’s trusts and estates lawyers have served as legal counsel, advisors and trustees to several generations of the families that built many of the most important businesses in the world. The firm’s insight and sound judgment have earned the respect and confidence of generations of some of the most successful private clients in their trusts and estates matters. Today, the firm continues to represent many leading entrepreneurs, senior executives, and private corporations and partnerships. The firm’s lawyers work closely with private clients and their families to realize their estate planning and philanthropic goals by creating and endowing trusts, estates and charitable foundations.

International Work:
For the past 100 years,Cravath has had an international practice representing US firms abroad and non-US firms, both in the US market and worldwide. Cravath lawyers work on a diverse range of matters and regularly advise corporate and financial institution clients on a variety of capital markets,mergers and acquisitions, general corporate, commercial banking and SEC compliance matters. The firm’s lawyers often work closely with leading law firms in Europe and elsewhere, providing advice on complex transactions that require extensive knowledge of and experience in the laws of multiple jurisdictions. The firm also handles both US litigation and international arbitrations for non-US clients.

Clients:
Along with governments and multinational institutions, the firm’s client base includes some of the world’s best known companies and financial institutions, including: Alcoa, American Express, Avon, AWB Ltd., BAE Systems, Banco Santander, Barnes & Noble, Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Deloitte & Touche, Delta, Deutsche Bank, DreamWorks Animation, DuPont, European Investment Bank, Goldman Sachs, Hertz, IBM, INEOS, Johnson & Johnson, JPMorgan Chase, Kraft Foods, Lindsay Goldberg, Medinol, Merck, Morgan Stanley, Mylan, Naspers, NCR, Nestlé, Novartis, Permira, PricewaterhouseCoopers, QUALCOMM, Royal Dutch Shell, Sappi, Sprint Nextel, Time Warner, UBS, Unilever, Vivendi and Xerox. Approximately one-quarter of the firm’s clients are non-US institutions for which the firm provides a wide variety of corporate, tax and litigation representations.

Branches

Antitrust - Nationwide

THE FIRM New York-based firm Cravath, Swaine & Moore is known principally for its litigation strength, although it has been boosted on the transactional front by the addition of high-profile former head of the antitrust division at the DOJ, Christine Varney. Despite only having one US office, it is able to stand alongside many of the larger firms in the country, demonstrating the ability to handle a wide range of antitrust matters on a nationwide scale. It has recently acted for American Express on four civil lawsuits concerning alleged breaches of antitrust laws. Other highlights include representing AmerisourceBergen in its $250 acquisition of TheraCom, and providing advice on a range of antitrust matters to Warner Music Group.

Commercial Awareness "They are very practical, they understand our business and I was very pleased with the consistency in quality of their work product."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Christine Varney chairs the firm's antitrust practice group. Fellow antitrust expert Evan Chesler is the firm's presiding partner.

Banking & Finance - Nationwide

THE FIRM Cravath's banking and finance group is affiliated with several of the strongest global financial services firms including JPMorgan, Credit Suisse and Goldman Sachs. As such, the firm is predominantly known for its outstanding lender side representation, offering clients much-lauded expertise across the gamut of lending transactions. The firm also has capabilities on the borrower side, servicing private equity firms and corporate clients in a multitude of financings. In a recent highlight, it acted for Credit Suisse and Citigroup in a $14 billion bridge credit facility related to the merger of Express Scripts and Medco Health Solutions.

Sources say: "Their work stands out on every deal. They always excel - it is truly remarkable that they have the capability to perform to that standard. They offer sound business advice and excellent work quality."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Michael Goldman earns much praise from sources, with one commenting: "Not only does he offer sound legal advice, but he has a great ability to frame business questions as well." Of late he has done considerable work with Credit Suisse on several highlight deals including the aforementioned bridge credit facility.

James Cooper is well respected by market observers. He often works with JPMorgan and recently advised the firm in connection with two credit facilities totaling $8 billion provided to social networking company Facebook.

Financial institution practice chair Robbins Kiessling remains a prominent figure within the firm. His wealth of experience in lending transactions ensures continued work with clients such as JPMorgan, Citigroup and Bank of America.

James Vardell has a strong reputation with interviewees. His practice focuses on syndicated bank financings and he regularly represents both corporate borrowers and traditional lenders. He is also well versed in project finance, restructurings and equipment finance.

Presiding partner at the firm, Allen Parker has a wealth of experience in the field, specifically in syndicated loan transactions, acquisition finance and leveraged recapitalizations. Recent highlights include the representation of Rock Tenn Company and Rock Tenn Company of Canada as borrowers in connection with $3.7 billion of credit facilities.

Described as "a great adviser," Jed Zobitz is adept at handling syndicated loan transactions, and has particular strengths in acquisition financings, leveraged recapitalizations and M&A.

Tatiana Lapushchik is a popular choice with several high-profile financial institutions. She recently advised JPMorgan in connection with $7 billion of credit facilities provided to Pfizer.

Capital Markets - Nationwide

THE FIRM The strong team at this firm receives plaudits from interviewees for the high quality of its representation of issuers and underwriters on transactions such as IPOs, equity offerings, and high-yield and investment grade debt. Recent highlights include advising Time Warner on its $1 billion registered debt offering and the underwriters, led by Credit Suisse, on Community Health Systems's $1.2 billion registered high-yield senior debt offering.

Client Service "They collaborate seamlessly to ensure they deliver their firm's absolute best on every client matter."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Kris Heinzelman is "highly thoughtful" and a "terrific lawyer," sources say. He recently represented the underwriters led by Bank of America Merrill Lynch and others in a $2 billion registered debt offering by Hewlett-Packard.

Stephen Burns "gets to the point very quickly," "has a fabulous knowledge of what is going on in the market" and is "highly user-friendly," sources say. His highlights include advising the initial purchasers on a $230 million Rule 144A/Regulation S senior convertible debt offering by DFC Global.

Andrew Pitts "does his job highly rigorously, but with an attitude and bedside manner that are enviable," market sources say. He represented Citigroup as underwriter in FleetCor Technologies' $249 million secondary offering of common stock.

William Fogg advised the underwriters, led by Bank of America Merrill Lynch and JPMorgan, on Freeport-McMoRan Cooper & Gold's $3 billion registered senior debt offering. Clients highly acclaim his practical judgment on complex issues.

Craig Arcella frequently represents both corporate clients and financial institutions in a range of capital markets transactions. He recently advised the underwriters led by Barclays Capital, Goldman Sachs and UBS Investment Bank on a $1.5 billion registered debt offering by the State of Israel.

John White is a "great thinker" who sources report "has a command of the intersection of accounting and disclosure that is really superb." He represented Rock-Tenn in its $750 million Rule 144A/Regulation S debt offering.

William Rogers is acclaimed by sources for his commercial understanding and hands-on approach to transactions. His highlights include representing Gaslog in its $329 million IPO.

William Whelan has "a complete grasp of all the legal issues, but can give practical advice, too" and he "can advise on risk but also on the practicalities of those risks coming to fruition and on ways to minimize risks," clients say. He advises investment banks and issuers on IPOs, high-yield and investment grade debt, and equity offerings.

Erik Tavzel represented DHT in its $80 million offering of common stock and series A participating preferred stock. He counts a number of Canadian public companies among his clients.

Corporate/M&A - Nationwide

THE FIRM Famed as a powerhouse in the representation of sophisticated clients such as BAE Systems, Johnson & Johnson and Unilever, this firm continues to garner respect from market observers. Its New York office houses a deep bench of talented attorneys who have honed their skills over countless mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures and divestitures. By virtue of this towering reputation, the team is the regular recipient of some of the most demanding and complex mandates around, including the $4.6 billion acquisition of Lincare Holdings by The Linde Group.   

Sources say: "Their knowledge of substance and procedure is complete, they are extremely responsive, and frankly, very nice people to work with."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Chair of the M&A department Philip Gelston and his colleague Mark Greene are prominent members of this practice.  

Intellectual Property - Nationwide

THE FIRM Based in New York, this firm is small relative to some of the international giants; however, it is roundly recognized as a litigation practice of the highest quality. Although patent litigation for life sciences and high-technology electronics companies is the IP group's mainstay, the firm undertakes copyright and trademarks cases and often bests firms many times its size.  

Sources say: "I was very impressed with the level of focus that they can maintain."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Evan Chesler is the firm's presiding partner.

Retail - Nationwide

THE FIRM This firm is highly respected for its corporate transactional capabilities and is frequently instructed on some of the largest mandates in the retail industry. The team currently represents Hertz in its $2.3 billion acquisition of Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group. Is has also advised JPMorgan on numerous credit facilities for companies such as JC Penney, Walmart and Best Buy.

Sources say: "Outstanding - they did a terrific job and if we had a similar situation, we would turn to them immediately."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Minh Van Ngo is a key contact at the firm.

Securities - Nationwide

THE FIRM Cravath, Swaine & Moore has one of the industry's leading securities litigation practices and handles some of the most significant class action and civil litigation matters. The firm's litigation team remains active in the defense of cases relating to the MBS fallout, notably acting as coordinating counsel to Credit Suisse on all such matters. In addition, the group represents companies, directors and present and former officers in shareholder derivative suits and class actions relating to M&A activity, fraud allegations and subprime asset issues. Notable clients include Barnes & Noble, Deloitte & Touche and JPMorgan Chase. 

Client Service "They're incredibly bright, professional and totally focused on the client and what works for the client."

Commercial Awareness "They are as good a subject matter expert as you would hope to find. They apply a deep analysis and think about things and how they will pan out."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Richard Clary has an illustrious reputation as one of the security industry's most prominent and successful litigators. He has represented the outside directors of Citi in shareholder derivative actions filed in Delaware and New York and continues to act as coordinating counsel on the defense of all RMBS claims brought against Credit Suisse. 

Managing partner Robert Baron advises global pharmaceutical and healthcare company Merck on numerous federal securities claims arising out of the market withdrawal of its Vioxx product. He continues to be recognized for his broad securities litigation expertise.

For "corporate advice and board procedure," John White is "one of the best I've ever met," comments one source. The former SEC staffer is a highly respected regulatory adviser and is cochair of the firm's corporate governance and board advisory practice.

Susan Webster is valued for her "depth of knowledge, high level of engagement, problem-solving and strategic advice." She advised the Huron Consulting Group nonexecutive directors on an SEC investigation and settlement, and other related litigation matters. 

Antony Ryan receives warm praise from the market as an "extremely smart and capable" securities litigator. He is applauded for his recent representation of AIG auditors PwC in a major securities class action, which reached an agreed settlement in the Southern District of New York affirmed by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.

Tax - Nationwide

THE FIRM This preeminent group extends its expertise to every corner of corporate law and related tax work. It is equally renowned for its general tax expertise, as well as its ability to really home in on specific issues and pioneer new problem-solving techniques. Cravath is able to blend its knowledge of real estate issues and tax to become a real leader in Real Estate Excise Tax matters. Its recent highlights include representing Barnes & Noble in the formation of a strategic partnership agreement with Microsoft. The group has also continued its representation of Starbucks in its continuing investment in its partnership with Square.

Sources say: "We found them excellent - responsive, diligent and thorough. They're very solid in advice."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Stephen Gordon heads the New York-based group.

Antitrust - New York

THE FIRM This team has a broad-spectrum antitrust practice, with experience in class action litigation, Sherman Act cases and transactions. It has long-standing relationships with such blue-chip firms as American Express and Qualcomm and has represented both of these in multiple matters of late. On the merger side, it advised The Linde Group in connection with its acquisition of Lincare Holdings in a deal worth $4.6 billion.

Sources say: "They are very practical, they understand our business and I was very pleased with the consistency in quality of their work product."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Evan Chesler is the managing partner of Cravath and a very well-regarded general litigator whose practice includes antitrust, securities and IP work. One peer calls Chesler "a terrific, terrific lawyer - someone I'd turn to if I couldn't represent myself." He defended IBM in a suit concerning mainframe computers.

Christine Varney chairs the antitrust practice and is described by sources as an "extremely sophisticated" lawyer. Practicing on the transactional side, she has acted for Grupo Modelo in connection with its proposed acquisition by Anheuser-Busch.

Corporate/M&A - New York

THE FIRM Cravath's powerful corporate practice has M&A experience in nearly every industry sector. The market continues to view the team as one of New York's best, which is also evident from the volume and quality of high-end work it undertakes. Recent highlights include representing DreamWorks in a joint venture with China Media Capital and others to form Oriental DreamWorks, and advising Grupo Modelo on its $20.1 billion buyout by Anheuser-Busch InBev. Its enviable client roster also includes IBM, Unilever and Qualcomm.

Sources say: "They're not going to get the wool pulled over their eyes by the other side." "Superb legal and commercial knowledge."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Richard Hall is seen as one of the most esteemed practitioners in the state. He divides his time between New York and the firm's London office, and recently advised the Linde Group on its $4.6 billion acquisition of Lincare Holdings.

Scott Barshay is an impressive performer who clients say is "brilliant." His recent highlights include advising Barnes & Noble on a $300 million investment from Microsoft into its digital reading subsidiary, NOOK Media.  

Interviewees say Faiza Saeed is "a superstar." She recently represented Pentair in its $10 billion combination with Tyco's Flow Control business.

Robert Townsend represented Olin Corporation in acquiring bleach manufacturer K.A. Steel Chemicals for $328 million. He also recently closed the $19.7 billion acquisition of Synthes for Johnson & Johnson.

Clients say Philip Gelston "is very pragmatic and will give you a straight answer right away." His clients include Mondelez International (formerly Kraft Foods), which he recently represented in the creation of a North American grocery entity and a global snacks business.

Sources say George Schoen can be counted on to provide "terrific" advice and client service. He acted alongside Townsend on the K.A. Steel acquisition for Olin, and also represented IBM in its acquisition of TealeafTechnology and the $850 million sale of its retail point-of-sale solutions arm to Toshiba.

Mark Greene recently advised the Linde Group on its $4.6 billion acquisition of Linacre Holdings, and represented Unilever in the $267 million sale of its frozen meals division to ConAgra Foods.

Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation - New York

THE FIRM This firm is highlighted for its M&A-focused benefits and compensation practice. The team advises on the legal implications of transactions, and on the creation of new plans and compensation arrangements. It advised Johnson & Johnson on its $19.7 billion acquisition of Synthes. As well as its deal-based practice, the firm also assists clients with ongoing tax, securities and ERISA issues in connection with the day-to-day operation of their compensation and benefit plans.

Sources say: "They are always knowledgeable and responsive, and have good legal sense and good commercial sense." "Every time we are blown away by how good they are."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Jennifer Conway "knows her area inside and out," say interviewees. She focuses on transactions, with notable experience in compensation and benefits issues related to M&A and IPO deals.

Eric Hilfers heads the firm's executive compensation and employee benefits practice. His wide-ranging expertise covers M&A, as well as the appointment and severance of senior executives, and employment and compensation arrangements. He recently advised Barnes & Noble on a strategic partnership with Microsoft. Sources comment: "He is a joy to work with."

Environment - New York

THE FIRM This firm's environmental group is recognized for its expertise in transactions and has a broad range of experience acting for clients in a variety of industries, such as manufacturing, alternative energy, pharmaceuticals and petroleum. Recently, the team advised Grupo Modelo on the environmental issues related to Anheuser-Busch InBev's $20.1 billion acquisition of the remaining stake in the company. The practice also acts for IBM, Goldman Sachs and Unilever.

Sources say: "One of the best firms in the whole world."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Interviewees appreciate that Matthew Morreale "gets a great result for his client, and does it in a way that is very effective and genial." Morreale is a partner in the firm's corporate department, and recently advised Nalco Holding on the environmental aspects of its $8.1 billion merger with Ecolab. 

Annmarie Terraciano advises on all environmental issues relating to financings, securities offerings and other transactions. She recently advised Ashland on the $3.2 billion acquisition of International Specialty Products, and sources praise her "business-oriented way of work."

Intellectual Property - New York

THE FIRM Cravath has an all-around IP capability, and its patent litigation offering comes in for special praise. Its attorneys represent both defendants and plaintiffs in infringement claims, as well as in related antitrust and breach of license actions. The firm recently scored a final victory on behalf of Bristol-Myers Squibb and Sanofi in a long-running patent dispute with Apotex regarding anticlotting agent Plavix.

Sources say: "Very impressed with the level of focus that they can maintain."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Evan Chesler is the firm's chairman. He has a distinguished litigation and trial practice, much of which is devoted to IP disputes. He played an instrumental role in the aforementioned victory on behalf of Bristol-Myers Squibb and Sanofi.

Keith Hummel is praised by clients as an "outstanding patent litigator." He also oversees clients' global litigation strategies and has recently been deeply involved in a round of medical device-related patent disputes dubbed the 'Stent Wars'.

Roger Brooks is a highly talented, all-around IP litigator, whose recent cases have involved digital and satellite technology, software copyrights, technology licensing, trade secrets and antitrust issues.

Litigation - New York

THE FIRM Cravath has an illustrious reputation in the New York litigation arena, and remains at the forefront of the most complex disputes. It houses some of the premier names in securities and commercial litigation, and as such remains a top choice for an impressive portfolio of clients. The group prides itself on its ability to handle a diverse spread of matters, and is praised for its notable commercial awareness and trial expertise. Its recent work includes acting as national coordinating counsel for JPMorgan Chase on the entirety of its RMBS litigation; the team also plays the same role for Credit Suisse. Other clients include Deloitte & Touche, NCR, Chemed and Vivendi.

Sources say: "I have never seen such a concerted and talented effort consistently, day in and day out. They really are a collaborative organization, and their client service is superb. When you stand back and look at organizations, and put together your list of who you would go to if the world came to an end, it's Cravath."

KEY INDIVIDUALS The "extremely impressive" Richard Clary is widely recognized as a leading securities litigator, whose extensive expertise in the arena sees him working on the most complex and high-profile cases. In addition to praising his advocacy skills, sources note that "he sits side by side with you as a trusted adviser, and understands the context of the dispute." His recent work includes coordinating the representation of Credit Suisse in all disputes arising from its RMBS transactions.

Head of litigation Sandra Goldstein is a "very tough litigator who is extremely client-friendly," say sources. She remains highly regarded for the breadth of her expertise, and handles a wide range of securities and commercial disputes. Her recent work includes representing Xerox in securities class action litigation relating to its restructuring.

Robert Baron is highly praised for his ability to handle both securities and commercial litigation, and offers impressive experience in complex disputes. He recently successfully represented Qualcomm in several shareholder suits triggered by the company's acquisition of Atheros Communications.

The renowned Evan Chesler is characterized as being "absolutely extraordinary," and epitomizes the firm's dedication to providing broad-based, leading litigation expertise. He is noted as a "very effective and skilled advocate," and works with an impressive range of clients, including Novartis, Morgan Stanley and Merck.

Daniel Slifkin is a "terrific" new addition to the rankings, highly praised for his securities litigation expertise. Sources note that "he has the demeanor that gives you confidence when dealing with problems," and praise his ability to "cut right through to the issue."  

Antony Ryan is recognized as an "extremely smart and capable" securities litigator, and is increasingly gaining prominence for his expertise in the accounting sphere. He represents PwC in a range of securities-related disputes.

Media & Entertainment - New York

THE FIRM The firm maintains its historically dominant position within the corporate media space. The team has been active working across a whole range of areas from M&A and capital markets to banking and finance, on a national and cross-border level. The group continues to be engaged in some of the biggest and most pioneering deals in this arena, including its recent work for Dreamworks Animation regarding the formation of a joint venture entertainment company in China.

Sources say: “They get work from a variety of industries and have done significant transactions.”

KEY INDIVIDUALS Faiza Saeed is an excellent corporate and M&A lawyer with a particular media industry focus. She is currently leading the team on the Chinese joint venture deal with Dreamworks above, as well as working with Time Warner and Viacom.

Tax - New York

THE FIRM The tax group at this extremely impressive firm is recognized as a powerful force in the formulation of tax-efficient structures for major transactions and in the negotiating and structuring of spin-offs, private equity acquisitions and financings, securities offerings and M&A matters. Much of this work is carried out on a cross-border and international basis, with a combination of responsiveness and diligence that has attracted an array of distinguished clients, such as Barnes & Noble, DreamWorks Animation and Johnson & Johnson. In recent highlights, the team represented BAE Systems in relation to the sale of the California-based manufacturer Safariland.  

Sources say: "A top-tier firm which provides top-tier advice and good value for money." "The firm attracts a high quality of talent, offers excellent quality of service, is very professional and extremely sophisticated. One of the best."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Stephen Gordon heads the firm's tax group. His practice incorporates a host of major transaction types, including handling the tax aspects involved in joint ventures, restructurings, M&A transactions and spin-offs. His clients include JPMorgan Chase and Time Warner. He is recognized for his professional aptitude, which one interviewee describes as "far above that of any other tax professional I've ever dealt with."

Andrew Needham's practice is also marked by significant transactional expertise encompassing joint venture formation, spin-offs and M&A. In addition to a number of investment banking firms, his distinguished roster of clients features Johnson & Johnson, Weyerhaeuser and IBM. Interviewees describe him as "very approachable, and very highly regarded in the tax community."   

Michael Schler's impressive practice covers a variety of matters in the field of corporate tax, international transactions, M&A and corporate finance. His clients include the Linde Group and Goldman Sachs, and he is regarded by one client as "one of the top corporate tax lawyers in the USA: 100% accurate in his advice, pleasant and congenial in his rapport and a thought leader in the US tax profession."

Lauren Angelilli represents clients engaged in private ruling matters before the IRS, and advises on the structuring of domestic and cross-border joint ventures, fund formation, restructurings, M&A and spin-offs. Her clients include DreamWorks Animation, Starbucks and Time Warner.

Peers speak favorably of the professional and personal attributes of Leonard Teti, who continues to develop his reputation for the quality of advice he is able to offer on bank financings, private equity transactions, intricate M&A and spin-offs.