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King & Wood Mallesons SJ Berwin

London

King & Wood Mallesons SJ Berwin - London
  • 10 Queen Street Place
  • London
  • Greater London
  • UK
  • EC4R 1BE
  • Senior Partner Stephen Kon
  • Managing Partner Rob Day
  • Number of partners in KWM globally 550
  • Number of other lawyers in KWM globally 2,700

THE FIRM King & Wood Mallesons is a new choice of law firm bringing a fresh perspective to commercial thinking and client experience. Strategically positioned in the world’s growth markets, more than 2,700 lawyers in more than 30 international offices are cutting through the challenges facing business, providing commercial solutions, and transforming the way legal services are delivered. The firm works together with clients to shape a new world for their business, creating real value by combining entrepreneurial spirit with intellectual rigour and deep local knowledge, to provide quality legal solutions that are innovative and often ground breaking. As the only firm in the world able to practise English, European, PRC, Hong Kong and Australian law, it is unrivalled in its ability to connect clients with opportunities in and out of the key Asian growth markets The firm is able to provide top quality legal advice, with genuine capability and real cultural understanding in each of the markets it operates. King & Wood Mallesons advise clients on the full spectrum of commercial, financial and specialist legal services, with a principle focus on: antitrust and regulatory, banking and finance, corporate M&A and securities, DR/litigation, projects (energy and resources), funds / private equity, intellectual property, real estate and tax. King & Wood Mallesons was formed by a game changing combination of the Asian powerhouse with SJ Berwin’s first tier capabilities in Europe and the Middle East. The firm is now called King & Wood Mallesons. For more information, visit their website at www.kwm.com.

    Contacts
  • UK Contacts 
  • Senior Partner Stephen Kon
  • Managing Partner Rob Day
  • Corporate Michael Goldberg, Richard Lever
  • Finance Jeremy Cross
  • Intellectual Property David Rose
  • Commerce & Technology Jeremy Schrire
  • Employment Nicola Kerr
  • EU, Competition & Regulatory Simon Holmes
  • Financial Markets David Calligan
  • Dispute Resolution / Litigation Alex Leitch
  • Real 
  • Restructuring & Insolvency Jeremy Goldring
  • Tax Heather Corben
  • Global Contacts  
  • Global Chairman Wang Junfeng
  • Global Managing Partner Stuart Fuller
  • Co-Deputy Chairman Stephen Kon
  • Co-Deputy Chairman Stephen Minns
  • Managing Partner Australia Sue Kench
  • Managing Partner China Wang Ling
  • Managing Partner Europe Rob Day

Branches

  • 10 Queen Street Place,
  • London,
  • Greater London
  • UK
  • EC4R 1BE
  • Tel (020) 7111 2222
  • Fax (020) 7111 2000
  • DX 255 London Chancery Lane WC2
  • Email : london@ev.kwm.com
  • Website : www.kwm.com

Banking & Finance - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 10 partners 
- 26 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Reputation for strength in the fields of real estate finance, international leveraged financing and funds finance. Enjoys close relationships with alternative lenders, overseas financial institutions and investment banks.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

“Very good. Experienced, available and able to deal with our requirements swiftly and efficiently.”

“They were excellent - we highly recommend them. Fund finance and private equity finance are things that they're very experienced in, and have a strong reputation for."

Work highlights Represented Vnesheconombank in the provision of more than USD2 billion of financing facilities used to fund the 2014 Winter Olympics.

Assisted Lion Capital with the financing for its £150 million acquisition of ghd, a UK hair styling brand, from Montagu Private Equity.

Notable practitioners  

Ian Borman is particularly recommended for his solid work in the real estate sector. He covers a wide scope of transactions from senior and mezzanine structures to syndicated facilities. Peers note him as “an excellent banking and finance lawyer.”

Clients would recommend Christopher Fanner for his expertise in emerging markets finance and syndicated lending. His client base includes major banks and corporate borrowers and he has niche expertise in the telecoms industry.

Significant clients RBS, Lloyds Bank, Bank of Montreal, Haymarket Financial, Bank of Ireland. 

Banking Litigation - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 10 partners
- 25 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Advises a broad client base including international banks, private equity houses, ratings providers and hedge funds. Equally adept in complex financial disputes and contentious regulatory enforcement proceedings.

What's new? Paul Stothard joined the firm from Dentons, adding expertise in international arbitration and fraud cases.

Work highlights Represented Arch Financial Products in relation to an FCA investigation and enforcement action as well as two accompanying sets of civil proceedings.

Acted for Standard & Poor's on a claim for declaratory relief that it not be held liable in connection with ratings that the client had assigned to structured products in 2006.

Notable practitioners  

Craig Pollack leads the practice and is regarded by clients and peers as a strategist and praised for his client management. He frequently acts for hedge funds and major banks in complex proceedings.

Alex Leitch is a solicitor advocate who acts for a diverse roster of clients. He is a key team member acting on behalf of Arch Financial Products, undergoing regulatory investigation.

Significant clients Morgan Stanley, The Bank of New York Mellon, UniCredit, PGGM, Investcorp Technology Partners.

Competition/European Law - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 9 partners
- 17 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Recognised for its broad offering. Provides assistance on behavioural and compliance matters. Increasingly active in damages litigation.

Work highlights Advised CEMEX on the Competition Commission's aggregates, cement and ready-mix concrete market investigation.

Notable practitioners  

Stephen Kon is co-deputy global chairman of the firm. He has an excellent reputation for handling contentious and non-contentious matters.

Simon Holmes heads the EU, competition and regulatory department in the UK and Europe. Clients report that "he gives expert advice and a superb service."

Tom Usher offers advice on the wide range of competition matters. He has particular expertise in the relationship between competition law and IP rights and advises clients from the music, film and pharmaceutical industries.

Cameron Firth focuses on the interface between IP and competition law and advises clients from a wide range of sectors including life sciences, pharmaceuticals, retail, and media and telecommunications.

Elaine Gibson-Bolton has experience representing clients in national and EU courts. She co-heads the firm's energy and infrastructure department and is well placed to advise clients from those sectors.

Philipp Girardet specialises in merger control and cartels, in addition to advising on behavioural compliance and competition litigation. Clients appreciate his understanding of their business objectives.

Significant clients Associated British Food, CBS Outdoor, Marks & Spencer, RBS, Ladbrokes.

Construction - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 2 partners
- 4 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Advises on domestic and international projects and disputes. Experienced in acting for clients in the energy, infrastructure and property development sectors.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"They're pragmatic and commercial." 

Work highlights Advised The Crown Estate on the W4 and W5 schemes, as part of a wider £1 billion investment programme into Regent Street.

Advised Macquarie on construction elements related to the purchase of the Severn Power Station in Wales.

Notable practitioners  

Julia Court is praised by both peers and clients for being "very efficient" and "good to deal with." She handles project work, advising clients in the transport, energy and renewables sectors.

Stuart Jordan is praised by sources for his knowledge and negotiation skills, and is an expert in procurement strategies.

Significant clients AXA, Schroders, RRAM Energy, RBS, Zenprop.

Corporate/M&A - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 15 partners
- 31 other lawyers

What the team is known for Able to boast a truly worldwide coverage following its high-profile merger. Undertakes work in real estate finance and private equity as well as more general M&A work, and is adept at large and mid-sized dealwork.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They were pragmatic and very solution-oriented." 

What's new? In November 2013, King & Wood Mallesons and SJ Berwin merged to form the present firm.

Work highlights Advised Watson Pharmaceuticals on its purchase of Uteron Pharma in a deal worth a potential USD305 million.  

Assisted Macquarie Infrastructure & Real Assets as part of a consortium acquiring Severn Power Plant from DONG Energy for £370 million.

Notable practitioners  

The "superb" Michael Goldberg is an "intelligent and effective" practitioner who focuses on corporate real estate work. He acted for British Land in its £470 million purchase of Paddington Central.

Steven Davis has a broad-based corporate practice which includes expertise in corporate and private equity transactions. He recently worked with a consortium featuring client Macquarie Infrastructure & Real Assets on its acquisition of Severn Power Plant from DONG Energy for £370 million.

Significant clients Universal, British Land, Associated British Foods, Westfield Group, Lion Capital.

Employment - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 3 partners
- 8 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Broad employer-focused practice able to tackle advisory work and litigation for its diverse client base. Particularly notable for its cross-border capability.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Very astute and capable, the quality and the level of service has really been outstanding." 

"They are very responsive and technically good, but they also understand our industry."

Work highlights Assisted Universal Music Group on the employment law issues resulting from the sale of Parlophone to Warner Music.

Advised Mazars in its role of administrator to Thamesteel including on 250 protective award claims brought by Community the Union for Life.

Notable practitioners  

Nicola Kerr advises employers including private equity houses, law firms and hedge funds on a wide range of issues. She also acts for senior employees in the professional and financial services.

Sources comment on Hilary O'Connor's expertise across all areas of employment law as well as her ability to understand her clients' business and culture. 

Carl Richards has broad employment expertise with recent highlights including his advice to Universal Music on its sale of Parlophone. Clients note his responsiveness: "If I indicate I need an immediate response, I get one."

Significant clients The British Land Company, Deloitte, Digital Lumens, Infinis Energy Services, Ladbrokes.

Environment - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 1 partner
- 4 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Acts for large corporates, investors in the UK and public sector organisations on a broad range of transactions. Has expertise on regulatory matters relating to a number of sectors.

Work highlights Advised Oxley Holdings on the environmental aspects of its purchase of Royal Wharf, a development in London.

Advised Park Holidays on the environmental features of its £172 million sale by Graphite Capital.  

Notable practitioners

Angus Evers is praised by sources for his knowledge of contaminated land and waste issues. He acted for Macquarie Infrastructure & Real Assets (Europe) on its purchase of the Severn Power Station from DONG Energy. Sources say: "He is very calm, measured, precise and logical."

Significant clients British Land, CEMEX UK Operations, Nuovito Energy, Hilton Hotels, Resolution Chemicals.  

Intellectual Property - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 5 partners
- 13 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Now very much a global practice, this firm has a full-service IP offering. It is particularly well known for sophisticated patent litigation.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Very diligent in pursuit of our interests and very adaptable to our needs."

What's new? Campbell Forsyth joined the firm in 2014 from Olswang.

Work highlights Represented Gemalto in a patent infringement dispute with HTC concerning smartphone technology.

Represented BSkyB in a trade mark infringement and passing-off claim mounted against Microsoft in relation to the latter's launch of its SkyDrive cloud storage service.

Notable practitioners  

David Rose leads the firm's IP practice in Europe. He divides his time roughly equally between patents and other IP rights. He has co-ordinated the firm's representations of BSkyB and HTC in their respective high-profile litigations. One source says: "He is a very assertive and robust litigator - good to have on your side."

Ray Black is a highly experienced soft IP expert who undertakes contentious and non-contentious work for household names in media, entertainment, fashion and retail.

Campbell Forsyth has an all-embracing contentious IP practice, although he is best known for patent litigation concerning pharmaceuticals, electronics and IT.

Significant clients Autumnpaper Limited (Alexander McQueen), Universal Music, HTC, Nintendo, Universal Music.   

Litigation - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 23 partners
- 51 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Well-regarded and active litigation practice with international capability. Particularly known for financial services litigation, regulatory investigations and technology disputes.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

“They're doing a great job and are doing everything they can to defend our interests. They're very thorough and I really feel that I can trust them to take care of everything. I really rely on their judgement and their expertise.”

“There were also overseas colleagues involved, and the collaboration was very good. It was a very strong alignment.”

What's new? SJ Berwin merged with King & Wood Mallesons on 1 November 2013.

Work highlights Acted for Ipsos on high-value claims of breach of contract and warranties, and fraudulent misrepresentation against Dentsu Aegis Network (formerly Aegis Group) in relation to Ipsos's purchase of the Synovate Group.

Advising companies in the Pirelli, Michelin, Continental, Bridgestone and Cooper Tire groups on a EUR350 million follow-on claim arising out of the synthetic rubber cartel investigation.

Notable practitioners  

Head of the dispute resolution practice Craig Pollack is highly regarded in the market for his work in international arbitration, commercial disputes, and banking and financial market cases. He acted for Standard & Poor's on a claim for declaratory relief in relation to liability for its rating of certain structured financial products in 2006.

Solicitor-advocate Alex Leitch acts for private equity firms, funds, asset managers and corporate clients in relation to a range of contentious matters. Recent work includes advising Arch Financial Products, as well as its CEO and compliance officer, on the FCA investigation into its role as investment manager of the Arch Cru Funds.

Hilton Mervis has a strong reputation in the market, with peers praising him as being “very insightful, very clever” and “a fighter.” He has a wide-ranging commercial practice, with experience in corporate and company disputes, banking and regulatory matters, and professional negligence cases.

Significant clients Standard & Poor's, Associated British Foods, BSkyB, Universal Music, Hilton Hotels.

Planning - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
 - 3 partners
 - 4 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Advises house builders on large residential developments and urban extensions. Noted by market sources for its work with objectors to development proposals, including representing action groups in judicial review actions. Specialises in contentious planning.

What's new? New clients include Bridgehouse Capital, Essential Living and St Modwen Developments.

Work highlights Represented the HS2 Action Alliance in its judicial review challenge to the High Speed 2 rail project, which was heard before the Supreme Court, and is continuing to advise on further grounds of challenge.

Advised Battersea Project Land Company on the impact of the Thames Tideway Tunnel and Northern Line extension projects on its redevelopment of Battersea Power Station.

Notable practitioners  

Peers regard Simon Ricketts as "a nice guy who is excellent at what he does." He heads the planning and environment department, and assists both developer clients and those objecting to major projects with strategic planning insight.

Stephen Webb often represents developers and local authorities in mixed-use developments, with a particular focus on residential-led schemes. "I've always found him very approachable; my dealings with him have been very positive," reported one fellow practitioner.

Significant clients British Land, Lands Improvement Holdings, Quintain, Royal Mail Group, Conserve the Chilterns & Countryside.

Real Estate Finance - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 7 partners
- 25 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Offers a range of financial services to borrower and lender clients, including mezzanine, investment and development financings. Focuses particularly on the creation and structuring of real estate funds, including debt and private equity funds, and fund liquidity bridge facilities. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They're very knowledgeable about this particular area of the market so can give you good advice about what the market is seeing that you might not be seeing yourself."

Work highlights Advised Urban Exposure and investment vehicle LetterOne on the £169 million senior loan to Wainbridge, for its redevelopment of 11–15 Grosvenor Crescent in Belgravia.

Assisted the joint venture between New River and PIMCO with three separate acquisition financings of several shopping centres and a portfolio of over 200 public houses.

Notable practitioners

Head of department Jeremy Cross is a key contact for real estate finance matters.

Significant clients British Land, Schroders, Delancey Estates, RBS, Threadneedle.

Real Estate Litigation - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 1 partner
- 3 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Handles property disputes for many of the firm's market-leading clients. Acts on a broad spectrum of landlord and tenant matters for investors and occupiers. Also active in insolvency-led property litigation.

Work highlights Successfully represented Marks & Spencer before the High Court in a dispute over repayment of rent after the successful operation of a break clause.

Acted for Hilton Hotels on a lease forfeiture matter.

Notable practitioners

Sources say Jason Juden has "very good instincts on how to handle a case." He has recently acted on disputes revolving around break clauses. "He fights hard but in a sensible manner," states one peer; "he's a very good opponent to deal with."

Significant clients British Land, Friends Life, The Crown Estate, The Ilchester Estate, Co-operative Insurance Society.

Real Estate - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 14 partners
- 42 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Noted for its impressive range of high-value investment mandates, including a significant number of prime London asset deals. Also acts on major developments, financings and occupier-side office and retail lettings. Particular strength in representing Far Eastern inward investors.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"What is good is their ability to drive forward large complex multidisciplinary transactions. They're disciplined and good at getting to the commercial nub of the matter quickly."

"They are a very effective team, hard-working with a wealth of experience. We are very happy with their service."

Work highlights Acted for British Land on the £472 million disposal of Ropemaker Place, structured through the sale of a Jersey Property Unit Trust.

Advised Oxley on its £200 million acquisition of the 40-acre Royal Wharf development site.

Notable practitioners  

International head of real estate Bryan Pickup advises on many of the team's most significant matters. "He is very useful in situations where you need someone with decades of experience," clients state, adding: "Bryan adds a little extra gravitas when required."

Darren Rogers leads high-value investment deals for major clients, and also has experience of development and letting work. Clients say: "Darren is very analytical and detailed; he understands the most complex issues quickly and will give you a commercial view. You always feel that he's on top of the issues."

Significant clients The Crown Estate, China Investment Corporation, AXA Real Estate Investment Managers, Schroders, Marks & Spencer.

Restructuring/Insolvency - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 2 partners
- 4 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Strong cross-border transactional offering, as well as an established contentious offering. Acts for a wide range of clients, including investment funds and insolvency practitioners. 

Work highlights Acted on the solvent liquidation and sale of a number of companies related to Play.com, on behalf of the new owners Rakuten UK, in order to effect the transfer of the business from Jersey to England.

Acting for Universal and EMI in their claims for pre-administration supplies of goods and provision of products during the administration of the HMV Group.

Notable practitioners  

Jeremy Goldring specialises in providing advice to companies and stakeholders, leveraging his considerable experience in national and transnational restructurings and insolvencies. He recently acted for Duff & Phelps on the liquidation of a number of funds.

Michael Woollard is described by sources as a practitioner who "gives clear advice on how to manoeuvre, even in a complicated situation." He specialises in handling non-contentious restructurings and insolvencies, primarily in the financial, retail and private equity sectors.

Significant clients KPMG, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, PwC, Duff & Phelps.

Tax - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 5 partners
- 10 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Provides a comprehensive corporate tax service to clients engaged in a variety of sectors, including investment funds, real estate and financial services. Places an emphasis on private equity deals and property transactions. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They can give very specific advice in very personal manner. They provide excellent service. I have no reservations at all - they are very reliable."

Work highlights Assisted British Land with its £472 million sale of Ropemaker Place to an investment consortium led by AXA.

Represented Universal Music Group in its sale of the Parlophone Label Group to Warner Music Group. 

Notable practitioners  

Head of department Heather Corben "has that very clear analytical approach," say commentators. "She is extremely sound. She has a very good working knowledge of all aspects of tax, including corporate and indirect."

The "outstanding" and "excellent" Stephen Pevsner impresses clients with his ability to "explain complex matters in simple words." His wide-ranging tax practice covers a variety of funds-related matters.

Significant clients Graphite Capital, The Crown Estate, Invesco Real Estate, Real Estate Venture Capital Partners, Bowmark Capital.

Energy & Natural Resources - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 7 partners
- 20 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Recognised strength in the conventional power sector. Significant expertise handling power station transactions in the UK market.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Excellent - they know the markets inside-out, they know the regulatory frameworks very well and they have a deftness of touch."

"We have been very happy with them and will continue to use them on a number of deals this year. The firm also offers very good technical workshops and has been quick to respond to any general legislative questions we have."

Work highlights Acted for Macquarie Infrastructure in its acquisition of the 832 MW Severn power plant.

Notable practitioners  

Neil Upton has extensive experience in power matters. He is appreciated by clients: "He has a very strong grasp of developments in the market." Another source says: "He is an absolutely outstanding lawyer - not only in his knowledge of the legal aspects, but he has a very strong commercial head on him."

Significant clients GPC Infrastructure Investments, Warburg Pincus, Zouk Capital. 

Financial Services - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 10 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: London

What the team is known for Significant experience in the alternative investment fund sector, advising numerous institutions on AIFMD implementation. Also known for its capability in advising on the full range of insurance and derivatives matters, making the firm a comprehensive non-contentious offering.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"I found their partners knowledgeable, experienced and commercial."

"They're very good. They provide clear, concise, tactical advice."

What's new? New client wins include HarbourVest Partners, ADM Investor Services International and INTL FCStone.

Work highlights Advised Blackstone on the scope and impact of AIFMD, including the analysis of funds and structures worldwide.

Represented Arch Financial Products, its CEO and its compliance officer in an investigation brought by the FCA into the client's role as investment manager of the Arch Cru funds.

Notable practitioners  

Tamasin Little is an expert on the provision of advice around funding, most notably bringing that to bear recently in her work relating to the AIFMD. Clients say: "Very knowledgeable, experienced and practical, Tamasin can do the analysis on the spot."

David Calligan heads up the department and handles a range of matters within the financial services sector. He regularly advises investment management firms and broker-dealers in the USA and Europe. 

Significant clients AXA, Interactive Investor, Think Money, Maple Securities, Lloyds Banking Group.

Fraud - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 11 partners
- 30 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Undertakes a variety of claimant and defendant work. Acts for high net worth individuals and clients from the financial services sector. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They're very responsive, very well organised in terms of their teams and communication systems, and user-friendly."

What's new? King & Wood Mallesons and SJ Berwin merged in November 2013 to create King & Wood Mallesons SJ Berwin.

Work highlights Acted for market research company Ipsos on a multimillion-pound fraudulent misrepresentation claim against Dentsu Aegis Network.

Successfully represented Blue FX Holdings in a USD7 million claim against two defendants alleging the fraudulent obtainment of property.

Notable practitioners

Ian Hargreaves recently moved to the firm from Addleshaw Goddard. He represented principal defendant Mukhtar Ablyazov in the high-profile BTA Bank fraud litigation.

Hotels & Leisure - UK-wide

What the team is known for Acts for a diverse client base, frequently representing investors, hotel operators, financiers and developers in the UK market and Europe. Active in a range of sector-related matters, including management agreements, development, leases and hotel funds formation. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Very strong on commercial contracts and fund management." 

Work highlights Acted for Zenprop on the acquisition of 20 Holiday Inns in Germany. The deal required multiple joint ventures and involved a significant amount of international investment.

Advised Raag Hotels on its joint venture with the Wellcome Trust and its aim to expand the Tune Hotels brand.

Notable practitioners  

Commercial real estate expert Steven Cowins is a key contact.

Significant clients Accor, Internos Global Investors, London & Regional, Invesco, Fattal Hotels.

Investment Funds - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 26 partners
- 44 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Recognised as a key player in private equity funds, and has a huge presence in the European market, advising on a multitude of fund closings of late. Offers clients the benefit of its extensive international network of preferred advisers. Active in the new area of real estate debt funds. Calls upon its renowned ECM expertise to support its listed funds practice, and works with clients on regulatory compliance and the creation of cutting-edge tax structures.   

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"We rate their responsiveness, creativity, commercial approach, strong team and support." 

"Very strong brand, they have some good lawyers there."

What's new? Gravis Capital, Lebara Investments and Urban Exposure are amongst the team's new client wins this year.  

Work highlights Advised Northedge Capital on its first fund, which successfully reached its cap at £225 million.

Acted for Rockspring on its property unit trust, which had a £1 billion target and focused on UK real estate assets.

Notable practitioners  

Jonathan Blake is identified by clients as a "great guy." He has considerable experience in the private equity funds space. He heads up the international funds group and covers a range of asset classes, including infrastructure, debt and mezzanine funds.

Head of UK investment funds Michael Halford "has good clients, and is a very bright guy," according to sources. His wide-ranging private equity funds practice takes in infrastructure funds, and he represents a number of key players in that market.  

Duncan Woollard advised LaSalle Investment Management on the second of its European real estate debt funds, which raised £600 million. He is noted for his abilities in mezzanine and distressed debt funds.  

Significant clients Patron Capital, ICG-Longbow, Zenprop, Mako Investment Managers, DWM Asset Management.

Parliamentary & Public Affairs - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 3 partners
- 6 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: London

What the team is known for Skilled counsel in the areas of planning, EU and environmental law. Has 'Roll B' Parliamentary Agency capability, and experience in opposing private and hybrid Bills.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"They have a great understanding of the real challenges we face."

Work highlights Advised a number of objectors to the HS2 hybrid bill, concerning the proposed new high speed rail link between London and Birmingham.

Notable practitioners

Simon Holmes is a key contact.

Partnership - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- Recommended office locations: London

What the team is known for Handles contentious and non-contentious partnership work, with deep experience in jurisdictions in Europe, the Middle East and Asia. Team works closely with the firm's corporate and funds lawyers, and is particularly skilled in matters pertaining to hedge funds and private equity houses.

Notable practitioners  

Hilton Mervis is a litigator who advises hedge funds and private equity houses on regulatory issues and commercial litigation with an international dimension. Sources state: "He's always 100% committed to the client's cause, and is also a very innovative tactical thinker."

Significant clients Triton Managers Limited, PAI Partners, Patron.

Private Equity - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 17 partners
- 35 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Substantial team acting across a broad spectrum of private equity work from large and mid-market deals to venture capital investments. Bolstered international presence, with its capability in markets such as Africa a particular strength.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They have an outstanding group of partners who are very experienced, very professional and very available."

What's new? The firm was formed by the merger of King & Wood Mallesons and SJ Berwin in November 2013.

Work highlights Assisted a consortium fronted by Warburg Pincus with the provision of USD600 million of equity capital to Delonex Energy.

Worked with Duke Street on its disposal of Oasis Healthcare for £185 million to Bridgepoint.

Notable practitioners  

Ylan Steiner has plentiful experience working on venture capital deals for investors and growth businesses. Among his recent work was acting for Blippar.com on its £2.3 million Series A funding.

The "fantastic" Steven Davis is described as a "very, very tough" opponent, while sources are also quick to highlight his strong business acumen.

Richard Lever specialises in working with a variety of private equity houses and investors on transactional matters. He recently worked with Graphite Capital Management in a management buyout of City & County Healthcare Group from Sovereign Capital Partners.

Significant clients Lion Capital, Duke Street, Graphite Capital, ECI Partners, Investcorp.

Retail - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 25 partners
- 25 other qualified lawyers
- Recommended office location: London

What the team is known for Full-service retail offering with notable strength on IP and real estate. The team is also known for its transactional work for retailers, as well as investors, in the sector.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are disciplined and good at getting to the commercial nub of the matter quickly."

Work highlights Acted for Marks & Spencer on the real estate aspects of the expansion of its Simply Food brand.

Advised Ladbrokes on its IT partnership with Playtech, aimed at expanding its digital offering.

Notable practitioners  

David Parkes and Jeremy Schrire co-head the consumer and retail group.

Significant clients British Land, Westfield Group, Associated British Foods, Dixons, Ralph Lauren.