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Simmons & Simmons LLP


Simmons & Simmons LLP - London
  • CityPoint
  • One Ropemaker Street
  • London
  • Greater London
  • UK
  • EC2Y 9SS
  • Senior Partner: Colin Passmore
  • Managing Partner: Jeremy Hoyland

THE FIRM Simmons & Simmons is a leading international law firm with fully integrated teams working through 23 offices in Europe, the Middle East and Asia. The firm’s strategy is designed to ensure it provides clients with high-quality advice and delivers value through new ways of working. Simmons & Simmons applies considerable expertise to all business sectors but focuses on: asset management and investment funds, energy and infrastructure, financial institutions, life sciences and technology, media and telecommunications (TMT). Simmons & Simmons acts regularly on the most innovative cases, deals and transactions in its chosen areas of specialism and receives recognition for the quality of its work from clients and others within these industry sectors. For example, this year, Simmons & Simmons won the Innovation Award at the Corporate Counsel Middle East Awards. In 2013 its asset management and investment funds team was named Financial News’ Asset Management Team of the Year, International Tax Review’s European Financial Services Tax Team of the Year, Asian Investor Best Law Firm, Global Investor/ISF Middle East Law Firm of the Year and Hedge Fund Journal’s Leading Law Firm. The firm receives regular recognition in Life Sciences and was named best legal team at the Telecoms World Middle East Awards 2013 and won the Energy and Natural Resources Team of the Year at the Legal Business Awards 2012. The firm’s commitment to corporate responsibility is well recognised. Simmons & Simmons was named best international firm for pro bono work at the Euromoney Women in Business Law Awards Europe 2013; was the highest ranked law firm in Stonewall’s Top 100 Employers 2014 in the UK for the sixth year running; and features in The Times Top 50 Employers for Women 2014 for the second year running.

PRINCIPAL AREAS OF WORK Five sector teams are drawn from the core practice areas of: corporate, dispute resolution, EU, competition and regulatory, employment, pensions and employee benefits, financial markets, information, communications and technology, intellectual property, projects, real estate and tax. Recent major transactions handled by the firm include advising:
•The Kyrgyz Republic for the development of laws and regulations, supporting the introduction of Takaful (Islamic insurance) and Sukuk (Islamic securities)
•Veolia on the sale of its UK-regulated water businesses (for which the firm was highly commended in the FT Innovative Lawyers Report 2013)
•Henderson Global Investors in the Context of its Joint Venture with TIAA-CREF
•R-Pharm on the acquisition of a production plant from Pfizer
•Five renowned international banks challenging the Court-sanctioned refinancing agreement of one of the largest industrial groups in Spain
•Samsung Electronics on their ongoing dispute with Apple (a multi-jurisdictional patent, design right, copyright and unfair competition litigation case that is being litigated around the world over several years)
•SEDCO Capital on the launch of a unique, award winning Shariah-compliant funds platform
•Significant transactions for longstanding client Telefónica UK including the £1.5b Smart Metering Programme and a £1.5b outsourcing
•As the external legal advisor to The Hogg Tendering Advisory Committee for LIBOR
•Sealed Air Corporation on the sale of a Japanese subsidiary and associated cross-border advice, working with TMI Associates, its joint venture firm in Japan

Simmons & Simmons also advises on the effects on its clients of the regulatory, enforcement and litigation requirements arising from current market conditions, and is known for its work on landmark financial litigation matters and appeals. Its market-leading Investigations Group has substantial experience in handling the wide range of legal, regulatory and strategic issues to which sensitive, cross-border investigations can give rise and the firm also has one of the largest full-service dispute resolution practices of any firm headquartered in the City of London, covering financial markets litigation, contentious regulatory, corporate crime, professional and product liability and international arbitration, as well as insurance, IP and employment disputes.

Firmwide, it has over 250 partners and a total staff of around 1,500 of whom more than half are based in its 21 offices outside the UK.

Other offices Abu Dhabi, Amsterdam, Beijing, Bristol, Brussels, Doha, Dubai, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Funchal*, Hong Kong, Jeddah**, Lisbon*, Madrid, Milan, Munich, Paris, Rome, Shanghai, Singapore, Tokyo.

*Sociedade Rebelo de Sousa in association with Simmons & Simmons

**Simmons & Simmons in alliance with Hammad & Al-Mehdar

  • Asset 
  • Energy & Infrastructure Juliet Reingold
  • Financial Institutions Jonathan Hammond
  • Life Sciences Jacques-Antoine Robert
  • TMT Andrew McMillan
  • Corporate & Commercial Mark Curtis
  • Corporate Giles Dennison
  • Information, Communications & Technology Tom Wheadon
  • Projects Juliet Reingold
  • Dispute Resolution Hans-Hermann Aldenhoff, Ian Hammond
  • Environment & Climate Change Steve McNab
  • EU, Competition & Regulatory Tony Woodgate
  • Intellectual Property Marc Döring
  • Employment Simon Watson
  • Financial Markets Jonathan Hammond
  • Banking James Bresslaw
  • Asset Finance Christopher Boresjo
  • Financial Services Sarah Bowles
  • Capital Markets David Roylance
  • Tax Nick Cronkshaw
  • Real Estate Nick Jones


Banking & Finance - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 18 partners
- 27 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Multidisciplinary approach with the department housing specialists in a range of disciplines from acquisition finance to real estate finance. Sector-based practice allows the team to focus on industries such as TMT, life sciences, energy and infrastructure.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

“Very easy to work with. Obviously give us all the legal options, but they’re also very commercial as well.”

“Depth of team was impressive - they offered bespoke transactional work, and were able to draw influence and strengths from specific teams for the work.”

Work highlights Advised bond arranger RBC Europe and security and bond trustee Prudential Trustee Company on the completion of a 3,000-bed student housing project worth £145 million.

Acted for Marlin Financial Group on its involvement in a £25 million revolving credit facility and issuance of high-yield senior secured bonds valuing £150 million.

Notable practitioners  

James Bresslaw is a key contact here.

Significant clients Citibank, Morgan Stanley, Schroders, SEB, Standard Bank.

Banking Litigation - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Broad offering incorporating asset management, financial services regulation and litigation relating to both retail and wholesale banking. Active in significant matters including Libor and foreign exchange, payment protection insurance (PPI) and Lehman Brothers-related disputes.

Work highlights Successfully defended Deutsche Bank in its disputes with the Khan family, relating to the bank's attempts at debt recovery and the defence of the family's counterclaims of misrepresentation and fraud.

Defended Tetragon in a claim brought by a former director, Alexander Jackson, alleging breach of fiduciary duty.

Notable practitioners  

The "knowledgeable and calm" Robert Turner is deeply experienced in the sector and recently led the team defending Tetragon before the Guernsey Royal Court. He is popular amongst peers, who note: "He's certainly not an easy opponent. He fights very hard but is equally very sensible."

Richard Bunce's practice encompasses a wide range of commercial disputes, often with an international element. He shows strength in mis-selling cases relating to both swaps and the AIG Premier Access Bond.

Colin Passmore has vast experience in retail finance disputes. Peers point to his presence in the market and highlight his client management skills.

Marc Thorley is well known for his expertise defending major banks in claims relating to PPI mis-selling. Peers say: "He's rated very well, particularly by banks. He's thoroughly nice and very easy to work with."

Caroline Hunter-Yeats focuses on representing wealth management firms and has experience advising on contentious regulation relating to structured products and asset management. She is regarded by sources as "absolutely first-rate."

Significant clients Bank of America Merrill Lynch, The Bank of New York Mellon, Credit Suisse, Citi, UBS.

Capital Markets - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Offers expertise in DCM and ECM work, representing underwriters and sponsors in a variety of complex matters, both domestic and cross-border. Particularly skilled in work relating to life sciences, asset management and infrastructure. Houses an integrated US law capability, enabling the team to act in high-end deals.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Their advantage is that they offer a magic circle service at a more competitive price. Outstanding quality lawyers and great value."

"The team has a hands-on, partner-led service."  

Work highlights Advised Barclays, HSBC and Merrill Lynch in connection with Royal London's £400 million tender offer and Tier 2 issuance.

Advised Jefferies International, J.P. Morgan Cazenove and Numis Securities in connection with the IPO of AO World.

Represented J.P. Morgan Cazenove, Peel Hunt, Canaccord Genuity and Shore Capital in the IPO of Circassia Pharmaceuticals.

Notable practitioners  

Head of the firm's ECM team Christopher Horton is skilled in IPOs and M&A, with notable experience advising investment banks. Clients state: "He is sensitive to what you're worried about, and is great at spotting issues and thinking through things. He can think 'big picture' and is great at doing analysis."

Charles Hawes is an English and New York-qualified US securities lawyer who advises on a broad range of capital markets matters. He recently advised J.P. Morgan Securities on a USD65 billion EMTN programme listed on the LSE.

Significant clients Rothschild, Deutsche Bank, Macquarie Capital, Liberum, Numis Securities. 

Capital Markets: Structured Finance, Securitisation & Derivatives - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 12 partners
- 32 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Impressive structured finance and derivatives team, offering buy and sell-side transactional and regulatory expertise. Areas of expertise include asset repackaging, synthetic CDOs and commodity-linked notes and derivatives. Also offers strong securitisation ability, with particular strength in whole business securitisations, residential mortgages and trade receivables.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They've been excellent. They're good at putting you in touch with other experts in the practice, and they've been very good at trying to introduce us to cost-sharing arrangements."

"Pre-eminent buy-side firm." 

Work highlights Advised Allianz Investment Management on two liquidity swaps, with a combined value of EUR700 million.

Notable practitioners  

David Roylance is an expert in structured credit products and derivatives, with particular knowledge of CDOs, repackagings and OTC derivatives. "He's technically exceptional, intelligent, user-friendly and comes up with practical solutions," according to one client. 

Ian Sideris has an expansive finance practice which includes strong expertise in CDOs, securitised and OTC derivatives and DCM work. He is described by sources as an "intellectual, clever guy who knows his stuff."

Jonathan Hammond is international head of financial markets at the firm. He is reputed for his knowledge of CDOs, synthetic transactions and repackaged securities. 

Alan Davies advises clients on a broad variety of structured finance derivatives matters. Areas of expertise include asset-backed financings, repos and cash and synthetic CDOs.

Simon Schiff has a broad-based capital markets practice, which covers structured finance, securitisation and trade receivables. He is particularly notable for his knowledge of RMBS, auto loans and whole business structures.

Significant clients J.P. Morgan, Morgan Stanley, Lloyds Banking Group, BlackRock, Capula Global. 

Competition/European Law - London (Firms)

What the team is known for Handles a broad range of competition matters. Well respected for its mergers and investigations capabilities. Particular expertise in the utilities sector.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They guide us through in a constructive and efficient manner." 

Work highlights Advised Schlumberger on the OneSubsea joint venture with Cameron in the oil and gas market.

Notable practitioners  

Charles Bankes is praised for his "constructive approach to problems." He is familiar with both UK and EU regulation.

Oliver Heinisch is viewed as an up-and-coming lawyer in this area. As part of his broader competition practice, he advises on the complex interaction between competition law and IP.

Tony Woodgate is a prominent figure in the market. He advises on litigation and non-contentious matters. 

 Significant clients Qatar Petroleum International, GlaxoSmithKline, HMV, Orkla.

Construction - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 27 partners
- 18 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Focuses on advising clients on contracts and in international arbitration proceedings. Acts for a range of employers, including entities in the transport, energy and waste management sectors.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"I was impressed – they are very practical and good at finding solutions."

"I am very happy – I think they are proactive and practical in their advice."

Work highlights Advised SunEdison on EPC and O&M contracts related to the construction of solar farms in the UK.

Acted for Etihad Rail on a range of matters relating to its USD11 billion Etihad Rail Project.

Notable practitioners  

The "proactive" Richard Dyton "makes himself available 24/7" and "is very helpful: he wants to make sure you understand the advice he gives," according to commentators. He focuses on non-contentious construction matters.

James Pollock concentrates on construction-related insurance disputes. Industry insiders say he is "excellent."

Significant clients Becton Dickinson, Mitsui, Ministry of Defence, Turner & Townsend, Doran Consulting.

Corporate/M&A - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 18 partners
- 24 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Sizeable London corporate practice with a strong, sector-based focus acting on large deals for worldwide clients. Among the key areas of expertise are financial institutions, funds, TMT, life sciences and energy and infrastructure.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They're very thorough and the attention to detail is high."

"They are very proactive and very good at distilling relevant issues."

What's new? Appointed to the Wayra legal panel.

Work highlights Advised Becton Dickinson on its disposal of parts of its Discovery Labware business to Corning for USD730 million.

Worked with CLC World Resorts & Hotels in relation to the creation of a joint venture with Interval Leisure Group.

Notable practitioners

Edward Baker is noted as a "very meticulous" partner who gains plaudits for the strength of his project management skills. He acted for Kentz in relation to a rejected takeover offer from Amec.

Significant clients AnaCap Financial Partners, Sealed Air, PCCW, NEC, Intertrust Group Holding.

Employment - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 16 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Market-leading practice advising on the full range of employment matters. Focuses on employers in the financial services sector, including asset managers and investment banks. It has recently undertaken standout litigation work.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"They are the go-to because they provide a Rolls-Royce service. We use them on big-ticket litigation as well as some of the bigger project work."

"They are really good. It is a large department but they all know what they are doing and have good resources and a good network. A top-tier firm."

Work highlights Advised BlueCrest Capital on the defence of a claim brought by a former partner claiming he had been removed from the partnership unlawfully.

Assisted Telefonica UK with outsourcing the entirety of its UK call centre business to Capita Customer Management.

Notable practitioners  

Julian Taylor assists clients with a wide spectrum of employment law issues but has noted expertise on High Court litigation. He regularly works with clients in the financial services and insurance sectors. He is widely praised by sources, with one impressed interviewee stating: "If you have him on the other side, you sit up."

Simon Watson is the firm's international head of employment. He regularly advises major financial groups on their employment issues. One client notes: "His wise counsel and experience is hard to match," while another states that he "has come across every situation, knows the banks very well and is at home in front of business people." 

Sources say Mark Hewland "provides a great service both legally and practically. He gets the bigger picture and understands the banking sector and its issues." He regularly advises City-based financial institutions on all of their employment needs.

Philip Bartlett is praised for his technical strength. His recent work includes a broad range of advice to clients in the financial services sector, with notable advice on industrial relations.

Andrea Finn advises large international employers on a wide range of employment issues including High Court and tribunal litigation as well as general day-to-day advice. Sources note: "She deals with the most difficult points in a convincing and analytical way."

Anna Rentoul acts for large companies with a particular focus advising those in the financial services sector. Her recent work includes defending discrimination claims for these clients. She is praised for her client service, with one source describing her as "personable and fun to work with."

Significant clients Moody's, AllianceBernstein, Visa, AXA Group, Deutsche Bank.

Environment - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Advises on the environmental aspects of transactions, projects and litigation. Highly regarded for its advice on environmental liability matters and remediation in relation to brownfield transactions. Regularly advises on projects in the renewable energy sector.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"The individuals I have dealt with at Simmons are supremely capable, pleasant to work with, available literally 24/7 and able to deliver no matter how complex the deal." 

Work highlights Advised Transform Land on land remediation issues.

Notable practitioners  

Steven McNab leads the firm's environment team. He has a mixed practice which includes advising on energy, climate change and environment law issues. Impressed clients say he is "fantastically knowledgeable," "extremely creative" and "pragmatic and commercial."

James Taylor acts for clients in litigation, transactions and in regulatory matters. Clients say he is "always accessible and a very helpful guy."

Significant clients Dalkia Biopower, Ministry of Defence, SunEdison, Viridor, Total.  

Financial Crime - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Market-leading investigations team. Regularly instructed in some of the most high-profile, complex and sensitive cases. Adept at handling matters involving interlocking criminal law and financial services regulatory issues.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They provide consistency, good sense and intellect. They have a pragmatic approach, relevant experience and are a reassuring presence in a very difficult situation."

Notable practitioners  

Nicholas Benwell advises corporations on a wide range of corruption and criminal fraud matters. Sources describe him as "smooth, client-friendly, bright and focused."

Stephen Gentle offers expertise in fraud, money laundering and bribery investigations, with an international perspective. Market sources say: "He is intelligent, knowledgeable and enormously experienced, and has great depth as a defence practitioner."

Elinor Lloyd has experience advising corporates on international investigations. She assists clients in relation to allegations of bribery, fraud and money laundering.

Information Technology - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Provides comprehensive advice on technology and telecommunications, with excellent experience in acting on business-critical systems implementation. Significant litigation practice, particularly in IT-related patents and competition issues.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Provided the client with an appropriate assessment in a timely manner to help them make a proper business decision." 

What's new? Monarch Travel Group, TetraPak and Courtiers Investment Services were secured as new clients.

Work highlights Acted for Telefónica UK on its successful bid to be the supplier of real time remote communication and readings for the government's smart meter scheme.

Represented Viridor Waste Management in its implementation of SAP-based ERP software provided by Capgemini.

Notable practitioners  

James Cotter regularly acts for financial institutions and investment funds on sophisticated outsourcing and service projects. He also handles technology matters for clients in the waste and healthcare areas, and recently advised the MHRA on reprocurement for software development and implementation.

Significant clients SK hynix, Virgin Media, Samsung, Ministry of Defence, Huawei Technologies.

Intellectual Property - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for A superior, full-service IP offering including heavyweight patent litigation, brand protection and management, designs, corporate support and commercial transactions.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Top-notch quality, very capable and a very deep bench for all sorts of issues."

"Professional to the end - knew their stuff and focused on getting the stuff done. They were brilliant." 

Work highlights Represented Eli Lilly in a patent dispute with Janssen Alzheimers Immunotherapy concerning a patent for antibodies used to treat Alzheimer's disease.

Advised Samsung Electronics on its successful defence of a patent infringement suit brought by Dyson regarding a steering mechanism employed in vacuum cleaners.

Notable practitioners  

Marc Döring is an "excellent" litigator who specialises in complex, business-critical patent disputes and has an impressive track record representing life sciences and hi-tech electronics companies.

David Stone is highly regarded for his work involving trade marks and design rights and is a favoured solicitor to lead contentious matters in these disciplines. One client describes him as "a pleasure to work with" and a "quintessential authority" in his chosen fields.

Marjan Noor is roundly considered to be a leading patent litigator in the life sciences arena, having secured excellent results for clients in pharmaceuticals, biotech and medical devices. She also advises on regulatory issues affecting the life sciences sector.

Kevin Mooney is a legendary figure in the realm of patent litigation. His stature was reflected in his appointment as chairman of the rules committee for the forthcoming European Unified Patents Court.

Significant clients Bayer, Eli Lilly, GlaxoSmithKline, Imperial Tobacco, Samsung.

Litigation - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
-37 partners
-85 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for A broad-based litigation practice noted for its expertise in financial services, insurance, fraud, professional negligence, energy and IP disputes. Acts for major banks and multinational corporations, including TMT clients.

Work highlights 

Acted for the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales on Prudential's appeal to the Supreme Court, concerning the application of legal privilege to legal advice given by professionals outside of the legal profession.

Acted for April Holdings and OS Holding on the successful defence of claims brought against them and others by Alessandro Benedetti, arising out of the acquisition of an Italian telecoms company.

Notable practitioners  

Colin Passmore is a highly respected figure in the London litigation market, handling international and domestic cases. Peers consider him to be “excellent, approachable and knowledgeable.”

Robert Turner specialises in financial markets litigation, with particular expertise in financial products and asset management-related disputes. He recently advised Patrick Dear and Reade Griffith in relation to their Court of Appeal dispute with Alexander Jackson, concerning shareholder obligations, fiduciary duties and rights to directorship in respect of Tetragon Financial Group.

Philip Vaughan handles corporate and commercial litigation and arbitration, with a particular focus on energy, infrastructure and professional services disputes. He recently acted for Robert Contreras and Michael Collins on a EUR50 million claim brought by the administrators of Damovo, alleging breach of directors' duties in relation to the group's Italian subsidiary.

Significant clients Samsung, Deutsche Bank, Intesa Sanpaolo, GlaxoSmithKline, Sharp Corporation.

Pensions - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Continues to impress with the breadth of services offered by its pension team. Well equipped to handle the full range of de-risking, compliance and funding matters, as well as defined contribution governance for trustee clients.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"The advice is pretty commercial and practical: they have a good understanding of the type of advice that clients want."

"Not only is the quality of advice first class, but they are also very expedient at dealing with any problems."

Work highlights Acted for BASF on the merger of two of its pension schemes.

Worked for Telefónica on the pension provisions of its £1.2 billion outsourcing of UK contact centre operations to Capita.

Notable practitioners  

Michael Wyman is head of department at the firm and recently assisted BASF in merging two of its pensions schemes. Sources describe him as "a very respected pensions lawyer with a lot of credibility," while clients highlight "his detailed knowledge over a wide range of pensions issues and quiet persistence in supporting his clients."

Danny Tsang works primarily with corporate clients on pensions matters, while maintaining a strong trustee practice. "He is articulate enough to be able to explain the intricate detail of our pensions scheme," comments one client.

Louise Waldron "is very firm and persuasive with a delightful manner," comments one of her clients. She works with trustees and employers on matters ranging from scheme management to wind-ups and mergers.

Significant clients Anheuser-Busch InBev, Gallaher, GlaxoSmithKline, Visa UK, Ministry of Defence.

Planning - London (Firms)

This firm is classed as a "Other Noted Firm".

Other Noted Firms are firms that are active in this practice area but have not yet been ranked.

Professional Negligence - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 22 partners
- 21 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Market-leading practice handling the full range of professional negligence matters. Noted for its expertise in high-value cases. Regularly acts for leading insurers.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are very strong and they have built up a large and respected practice." 

Notable practitioners  

"Standout in the field" James Pollock is described as "a good technical lawyer who works hard to build relationships with clients." He frequently defends construction professionals, brokers and solicitors in liability claims.

Simon Hilditch handles high-value insurance-related professional negligence matters.

Colin Passmore is widely recognised for his litigation expertise and market standing in the area. Sources reinforce his impressive reputation in handling professional negligence matters.

Significant clients QBE, Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance, Lockton, Beazley, Torus.

Real Estate Finance - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Specialist advisers on the full range of real estate finance products, with a strong multidisciplinary approach. Supported on transactions by the firm's international network. The team advises borrower and lender clients across numerous jurisdictions.  

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Excellent - a strong level of experience, approachable partners, and a good balance between client and bank friendly." 

"Ten out of ten. Their attention to detail in terms of document points protected the bank at all times."

What's new? Matthew Hooton brings experience in Islamic finance from Ashurst. Private funds specialist Dale Gabbert joins the firm from Reed Smith.

Work highlights Advised the Royal Bank of Canada on the arrangement and issuing of a £147 million bond financing for the construction of student accommodation at the University of Hertfordshire. 

Notable practitioners  

Simon Kildahl enjoys a distinguished reputation in this market, with vast experience in both domestic and international real estate finance. Sources comment: "He's great on difficult negotiations; he always remains calm and polite but nearly always wins his argument! He has been a real support, also providing advice and explanations when needed."

Head of department Mark Waghorn maintains his standing as an expert in the sector, specialising in restructuring and insolvency work. He acts for a wide range of clients and has significant experience in the hotels and leisure, healthcare and retail sectors.

Paula Macnamara's clients note that she "has a very strong technical ability; she's very approachable and diligent, with a high level of attention to detail." She is regularly instructed by banks and other financial institutions on a range of matters, including acquisition and development finance.

Significant clients Deutsche Bank, National Bank of Kuwait, Wells Fargo, Chenavari, Aareal Bank.

Real Estate - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Advises a range of funds clients on transactional matters, development and fund structuring. Key strength in inward investment mandates from clients in Europe, the Middle East and Asia. Additional capability in corporate occupier work on the tenant side.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Their advice was timely, to the point and extremely commercially focused. They worked well alongside our internal team and our other external professional advisers."

"The transactional team helped to deliver and meet the short timeframe. I found them responsive and very good."

What's new? Matthew Hooton joins from Ashurst.

Work highlights Represented Deka Immobilien Investment in its acquisition of the St Botolph Building from Minerva.

Advised Avenue Capital Group on structuring a student accommodation investment fund and subsequent portfolio acquisitions.

Notable practitioners  

Ali Crosthwaite has experience of investment, development and asset management for funds clients. "Ali is hugely down to earth, pragmatic, very capable and really good at going the extra mile for her clients," clients say.

Significant clients Four Seasons Healthcare, Aberdeen Asset Management, GVA Grimley, Henderson Global Investors, National Asset Management Agency.

Restructuring/Insolvency - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Strong reputation as a versatile practice capable of acting with distinction in all areas of insolvency and restructuring. Particularly noted for its skill in advising distressed lenders, banks and directors.

Work highlights Advising General Healthcare Group, the landlord of the UK's largest private hospital group, on the potential restructuring of its significant debts.

Acting for the company, and subsequently the administrators, of Compact GTL on taking the company into administration, and advising on an exit strategy through a solvent equity deal.

Notable practitioners  

Peter Manning advises clients on all aspects of restructurings and insolvencies, particularly in the representation of banks, insolvency practitioners and lenders in distressed situations. He is recognised in the market as a talented and efficient practitioner.

Alan Gar acts for banks, funds and other investor clients on corporate restructuring and insolvency matters. He is identified as an experienced and efficient operator providing lender-side advice.

Significant clients Deloitte, Avenue Capital, Attestor Capital, Deutsche Bank, Grant Thornton.

Tax - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 5 partners and equivalents 
- 9 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Noteworthy for its established sector expertise in areas such as media and technology, energy, finance, life sciences and investments. Advises clients on direct and indirect tax issues arising from property transactions, banking work and capital markets matters.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"I appreciate their responsiveness and ability to get things done within short time periods and with little input needed from me."

Work highlights Advised hedge fund manager BlueCrest on a USD750 million term refinancing from a bank syndicate.

Assisted SunEdison with its emergence into the UK solar energy industry with its acquisition of a first tranche of projects from a UK developer. 

Notable practitioners  

Nick Cronkshaw is "very user-friendly," according to market commentators. He is head of the firm's London and international tax groups. 

Martin Shah maintains a broad and varied tax practice. He advises clients involved in asset management, banking and insurance.

Significant clients Avenue Capital, British Land, Macquarie, APG, Insight Investment.

Asset Finance - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for Advises banks, leasing companies and airlines in connection with high-value aircraft finance transactions.

Work highlights Advised Aviation Capital Group on its USD300 million refinancing of six Airbus aircraft on lease to various international airlines.

Advised Finnair on its USD1.5 billion sale and leaseback of 15 Airbus aircraft.  

Notable practitioners  

Mark Moody is extensively experienced in advising a range of organisations including ECAs, leasing companies and airlines on aviation finance transactions. Clients have noted that he is "very commercially minded" and "puts the deal and client first." 

Christopher Boresjo is experienced in structured aviation finance deals, advising a range of organisations including airlines and leasing companies.

Donna Ager has been described as a "strong, solid and commercial" partner in the aviation finance sphere.

Significant clients Aer Lingus, AerCap, Sumitomo, BNP Paribas, J.P. Morgan.

Commodities - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for Go-to practice for regulatory counsel on matters affecting commodities trading. Key clients include hedge funds and investment banks as well as commodities traders. Clients benefit from the firm's strong pedigree in regulatory matters, particularly on exchange-traded and OTC derivatives.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"The firm is not pompous at all; we find we can always have a mature chat with the lawyers." 

"A very good regulatory team." 

Notable practitioners  

Jonathan Melrose is a key member of the firm's commodities, energy trading and finance department, and has a long-standing reputation for skilled analysis of complicated cross-jurisdictional matters. Clients praise the "excellent timeliness and substance" of his input. His high-level clients include exchanges and industry bodies.

Younger partner Charlotte Stalin wins plaudits for her keen client service. One client says: "She understands our business well," adding that "she has been proactive and has contacted us with updates regularly."

Sources describe Darren Fox as a focused and knowledgeable professional. His key clients include investment banks and hedge fund managers.

Significant clients Jefferies Bache, Scotiabank, Freepoint Commodities, Futures & Options Association, Attestor.

Consumer Finance - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 14 partners
- 20 other lawyers
- Recommended office: London

What the team is known for High-profile work on complex projects for large financial institutions. The team is notable for its broad capabilities with a diverse range of work including product inception, compliance advice and matters relating to technological developments.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Their contacts within the industry and regulators can make things happen and they also have coverage across the globe which can be managed from London."

"They have the ability to filter their legal advice through a commercial prism."

Work highlights Successfully defended a Barclays subsidiary in a case concerning the ability of claimants to litigate over mis-sold payment protection insurance where other dispute resolution mechanisms are available.

Advised Giffgaff on a new peer-to-peer lending project which, in conjunction with Ratesetter, allows Giffgaff customers to borrow money for new mobile devices.

Notable practitioners  

Mark Dewar has a wide-ranging practice and is known for his ability to provide "high-quality, timely advice." He regularly leads the team's work on regulatory compliance as well as its transaction-related advice.

Sophie Lessar is "a rising star" who is known for her technical ability and clear advice. Her time on secondment in the in-house teams of global banks gives her an insight into the needs of such clients.

Significant clients Barclays, Arbuthnot, Telefónica.

Employee Share Schemes & Incentives - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for Focuses on financial services and international share scheme mandates. Provides advisory and transactional share incentive support to a strong set of financial sector-specific clients.

What's new? Ian Fraser joined the practice as head of department in March 2013, increasing the firm's presence in the employee share schemes and incentives arena.

Notable practitioners  

Ian Fraser leads the practice's major share scheme mandates, and is skilled at advising on both financial remunerations and international share scheme issues. "He is responsive and practical, and he puts in great effort to accomplish within limited timeframes," said one interviewee.

Significant clients Old Mutual, CLSA BV, John Hardy International, M&G Investments, Swiss Re.

Energy & Natural Resources - UK-wide

What the team is known for Broad mining practice acting for clients on a global basis. Advises on areas such as project development and financing, capital markets, corporate transactions, disputes and regulatory and risk issues.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"The team has been excellent. They develop carefully thought-through proposals and demonstrate how they can add value to a transaction, whether on fee arrangements or technical expertise."

"It was very effective: they organised the process well and they were very efficient."

Work highlights Acted for BlackRock World Mining Trust in a royalty financing deal with Avanco Resources for projects in Brazil.

Advised J.P. Morgan on Rajawali Corpora's purchase of a stake in Archipelago Resources.

Notable practitioners

Iain Duncan is a key contact.

Significant clients Anglo American, First Quantum Minerals, Kumba Iron Ore, Hi Capital, Sumatra Copper & Gold.

Energy & Natural Resources - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for Recognised for its work across the energy sector. Advises in connection with downstream and midstream development and financing, in addition to regulatory and commercial matters. Acts on power and renewable energy project financing, both for lenders and developers, as well as acting in relation to M&A, joint ventures and capital market financing.  

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They were pretty pragmatic and they were good at getting the deal done."

Work highlights Acted for SunEdison on the acquisition, development and financing of four solar projects in the UK.

Advised the sponsors on the construction and development of a proposed gas-fired combined heat and power plant in the UK, at the largest LNG terminal in Europe.

Advised Mainstream Renewable Power on a joint venture with Actis to develop 600 MW of renewable energy in Chile.

Notable practitioners  

Patrick Wallace is an experienced energy partner who advises in relation to project development, transactions and regulatory issues in the power sector. Sources note that "he is a very good practitioner and he has deep sector knowledge across nuclear, conventional and renewable energy." 

Significant clients AES, Qatar Petroleum International, Egyptian LNG, Teesside Gas & Liquids Processing, Royal Vopak.

Financial Services - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 33 partners
- 57 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: London

What the team is known for Noted for its cross-practice integration, seamlessly covering both non-contentious and contentious work side by side with equal efficacy. Experience advising a broad array of clientele including hedge fund managers, investment banks and private financial institutions.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"A good bench of very good people. The work is always high-quality. If someone wanted a difficult piece of non-contentious work done, they'd be my first port of call."

"An asset management specialist."

"They're very good on shareholder disclosure issues - they cover that extremely well."

What's new? New panel appointments from Arthur J. Gallagher and AIG. New client wins include Virgin Media.

Notable practitioners  

Non-contentious specialist Darren Fox is noted for his wealth of expertise in advising national and international hedge fund and investment management clients on regulatory implementation. Clients rate him incredibly highly for his technical expertise in this sector.

Richard Sims is an expert in contentious work, regularly handling enforcement disputes and investigations. He is highly regarded by clients for his technical knowledge.

Stephen Gentle continues to build an impressive reputation in contentious matters complemented by his experience in white-collar and corporate crime. Sources say: "One of the most impressive, practical lawyers around. He's very knowledgeable, sensible and very easy to deal with."

Charlotte Stalin is highlighted for her non-contentious legal reviews and business structuring advice. She also manages the firm's impressive web-based navigator product which gives regulatory information on over 80 jurisdictions.

Jonathan Melrose is known for his advising on regulatory implementation and conducting due diligence and corporate infrastructure from a financial services standpoint. One peer comments: "He has a commodities specialisation which is hard to come by."

Significant clients Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan, Allianz Global Investors, Lloyds bank, Royal Bank of Canada.

Fraud - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for Handles fraud proceedings for a broad range of clients. Combines civil fraud with corporate crime and regulatory expertise.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"A safe port of call if you've got a complex problem."  

"Good, thorough service with good international connections."

Work highlights Acted for Prince Jefri of Brunei on a multi-jurisdictional dispute with the Brunei Investment Authority relating to an investigation into the alleged misappropriation of substantial sums by former advisers.

Notable practitioners

Nick Benwell is head of the department. 

Investment Funds - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for Advises a sophisticated client base of international asset managers. Benefits from the strong firm-wide focus on the investment funds sector. A dominant presence in the hedge funds market, also expanding its coverage of the open-ended and private funds areas. Offers its clientele the full suite of funds services, including tax and regulation.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are a top firm and provide excellent service."  

What's new? The team was appointed to the Schroders/Cazenove panel.

Work highlights Acted for Invesco Perpetual on its first multi-asset class venture, a UK UCITS fund.

Advised Henderson Global Investors on the launch of a UK fund focused on small and micro-capital equities.  

Notable practitioners  

Iain Cullen earns praise from interviewees for his experience in the market, with one noting that he "obviously has a very strong brand, and is a very strong practitioner." He lately assisted a key client with the reorganisation of a master/feeder fund structure, and the development of a new feeder fund.

Richard Perry led the team advising Henderson Global Investors on the launch and structuring of the AlphaGen Volantis Catalyst Fund. Sources admire his "client-focused" approach, calling him "an outstanding lawyer - he gives exceedingly good advice."

Dale Gabbert demonstrates a strong grasp of all aspects of funds work, from the formation of funds to the guidance of institutional investors. He is described by one market commentator as a "good technical lawyer."

Neil Simmonds "is very experienced, very thoughtful and very measured in his advice," according to sources. He has handled a major reorganisation project for a big asset manager of late, drawing in support from the firm's offices in Germany, France and Italy.  

Significant clients Capula Investment Management, Brevan Howard, BlueCrest Capital Management, Rothschild, Allianz Global Investors.  

Life Sciences - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for Significant life sciences practice, characterised by the depth of its expertise. Distinguished particularly by the quality of its patent litigation and transactional offerings.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They're very skilled on the law of course, but also have a very good understanding of how we operate as a business, and what our priorities are."

"They have a really good reputation in this space." 

Work highlights Acted for Eli Lilly on a widely reported patent dispute with Janssen Alzheimer Immunotherapy concerning antibodies technology before the UK Patents Court, which found in the client's favour.

Advised Union MedTech on its acquisition of New Zealand-based company Rex Bionics' entire share capital in exchange for new shares in the client's business.

Notable practitioners  

Richard Binns is a well-respected IP lawyer noted for his work in the life sciences sector, advising on all manner of commercial and corporate deals, such as technology transfers, collaboration agreements and financing rounds.

Michael Gavey is a leading transactional IP lawyer with expertise in collaboration, clinical trials, and licence and manufacturing agreements, as well as corporate deals and related regulatory issues.

Charles Mayo specialises principally in corporate transactions of all kinds and related compliance matters, and is a prominent figure in major life sciences deals.

Marjan Noor is commended for her leadership of make-or-break patent disputes, and also for her advice on regulatory issues. One key client said: "She is excellent - highly motivated, creative, extremely thorough and very responsive."

Marc Döring is an accomplished IP lawyer specialising in patent litigation, and is much sought after for his representation of world-leading biotech, medical devices and pharmaceuticals companies.

"Knowledgeable" Scott Parker has made a name for himself in the sector with his deft hand at patent litigation, usually acting on behalf of innovators defending their products from generic challenges.

Kevin Mooney is a doyen of life sciences patent litigation, called on for IP law policy and thought-leadership as well as for business-critical disputes. Recent matters include defending Lundbeck's rights to blockbuster SSRI escitalopram.

Significant clients Bayer Pharma, Celtic Pharma, Eli Lilly, Genmab, Procter & Gamble.

Outsourcing - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for Well-rounded outsourcing group with full advisory capabilities and strength across various sectors, including telecoms, energy and banking. Recently involved in high-value outsourcings on behalf of prominent clients.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are professional, with extensive experience, and also commercially astute."

Work highlights Assisted Telefónica UK (o2) with the £1.2 billion outsourcing of its UK call centre estate to Capita Customer Management, one of the highest value contact centre outsourcings to have taken place in the UK.

Supported African consumer mobile telecommunications company MTN in a multi-jurisdictional telecoms infrastructure outsourcing across the continent.

Notable practitioners

Partner Alexander Brown is a key contact in the outsourcing department.

Significant clients Virgin Media, The Money Advice Service, Imperial College, Equinix, Travelport.

Projects - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 15 partners
- 28 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Significant strength in defence work and notable expertise in areas including waste and transport. Represents government clients, lenders and sponsors domestically and internationally. Also active in secondary market deals.

What's new? New client wins, include Energy Technologies Institute, NIBC and VolkerInfra.

Work highlights Acted for Macquarie Capital (Europe) on a EUR300 million prison complex in Belgium.

Represented Surrey County Council in the renegotiation and refinancing of an eco park project.

Notable practitioners  

Richard Dyton heads the firm's waste management and construction teams and is regularly instructed by bidders and public sector clients on waste projects and secondary market work. Sources describe him as a "very good, sound, pragmatic guy."

Significant clients MOD, MVV Umwelt GmbH, Viridor Waste Management Services, UK Green Investment Bank.

Product Liability - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for Advises clients on labelling, advertising and recall issues on a pan-European basis. Able to counsel clients on the complete range of supply chain issues.

Notable practitioners  

"Leading practitioner" Mark Dewar has a broad commercial product liability practice that includes significant amounts of food work. He is lauded by commentators, who note that "his technical and client management skills are really excellent."

Significant clients Kids II, Vetanda Group.

Projects - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for Broad-based projects practice acting for lenders and sponsors on oil and gas, infrastructure and power matters in Europe and Africa. Recognised for its strength in the UK market.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They're very supportive, and they go the extra mile to get things done."

What's new? New client wins, including VolkerInfra, Energy Technologies Institute and NIBC.

Work highlights Advised Mainstream Renewable Power on its joint venture with Actis, relating to the USD1.4 billion delivery of 600 MW of wind and solar projects in Chile.

Acted for Qatar National Bank on the USD526 million Ras Abu Fontas A2 desalination project.

Notable practitioners  

Patrick Wallace's practice includes work in the power and oil and gas fields. Sources describe him as "excellent" and he is regularly instructed by sponsors on projects in Europe and Africa.

Significant clients UK MOD, Sun Edison, Viridor, BlackRock World Mining Trust, Qatar Petroleum International.

Telecommunications - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for Advises across the gamut of transactional and regulatory issues. A bench of dedicated sector practitioners acting for major clients both internationally and in the UK.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"They performed well and were easy to deal with - no fuss, no nonsense."

What's new? Virgin Media is among recent client wins.

Work highlights Acted for Telefónica UK on its successful tender for the communications services contracts for the central and southern regions of the UK Smart Metering Implementation Programme.

Negotiated the data centre outsourcing contracts to Capita Customer Management for Telefónica UK.

Notable practitioners  

Tom Wheadon continues to be recognised for his work on telecoms policy and regulatory matters. Recent work highlights include advising PCCW and its UK subsidiary on its participation in the Ofcom auction for 4G wireless spectrum. Sources confirm: "He's definitely one of the well-known people in the industry."

Lately, Alexander Brown has advised Telefónica UK on the outsourcing of all of its call centre work in the UK. Outside telecoms, he also has expertise in data privacy. "He did a cracking job and he pitched his involvement at the right level," said one interviewee. "We've got a lot of time for him."

Significant clients Samsung, PCCW Group, Equinix, TiVo, MTN.

Transport - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 15 partners
- 40 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Advises on legal issues relating to complex infrastructure projects. Also noted for its advice on rail-related real estate issues and track access arrangements.  

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are experienced in infrastructure projects and are therefore able to provide strong advice." 

Work highlights Advised Ineco on key project agreements for the Haramain High Speed Rail Project.

Advised Keolis on its operator bid for the Al Sufouh Light Rail project.

Advising Network Rail on depot agreements for three new depots on the new Thameslink service.

Notable practitioners  

Juliet Reingold advises on major projects and public private partnerships. Clients highlight her ability to "organise the scale of projects effectively."

Significant clients Mitsui & Co, China Railways, Etihad Rail, Transport for London.