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Pinsent Masons


Pinsent Masons - London
  • 123 St Vincent Street
  • Glasgow
  • Glasgow City
  • UK
  • G2 5EA
  • Senior Partner Richard Foley
  • Managing Partner David Ryan
  • Number of partners 390
  • Qualified lawyers 1200

The Firm Pinsent Masons is an international law firm with a long-standing reputation for delivering a high quality service and adding value for clients. The firm’s approach to doing business is structured around developing long-term relationships with its clients, its people and its local and global communities. With an international resource of over 1,500 lawyers - including 500 lawyers in its headquarters in the City of London - the firm delivers on the ground legal advice from 19 locations, advising clients on their businesses worldwide. Working with major international and UK corporations, institutions and public bodies, the firm has strong global credentials in four sectors: advanced manufacturing and technology, energy and natural resources, financial resources, and infrastructure. It also has considerable knowledge and expertise across a wide range of services which cover (for example) corporate, M&A, commercial, competition, litigation and arbitration, banking, restructuring, insurance, regulatory, construction, projects, pensions, property, planning and environmental, procurement, outsourcing, employment, share plans, technology and tax. Pinsent Masons’ emphasis on listening, understanding and building strong working partnerships has proved essential to the firm’s many successful client relationships, evidenced by the large number of FTSE350 and similar clients for which the firm acts.

International Offices Aberdeen; Belfast; Birmingham; Edinburgh; Leeds; London; Manchester; Munich; Paris; Istanbul; Dubai; Qatar; Beijing; Hong Kong; Shanghai; Singapore.


  • 30 Crown Place,
  • Earl Street,
  • London,
  • Greater London
  • UK
  • EC2A 4ES
  • Tel (020) 7418 7000
  • Fax (020) 7418 7050
  • DX 119516 Finsbury Square
  • Website : www.pinsentmasons.com

Administrative & Public Law - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 3 partners
- 10 other lawyers

What the team is known for Offers commercial expertise to public sector clients, with an emphasis on competition and state aid matters. Recognised for its proficiency in infrastructure and transport development projects.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are very reactive, with good expertise. They give pragmatic advice because they know the law and understand our business."

Work highlights Advised Glasgow City Council on a tax incremental financing project allowing for £310 million of private sector investment in the development of Buchanan Galleries shopping centre.

Acted for University of Aberdeen on the procurement and construction of a replacement facility for the Rowett Institute of Nutrition & Health.

Notable practitioners  

Senior associate Jamie McRorie enjoys a growing reputation for his public law practice. He focuses on freedom of information, public procurement and state aid issues, and advises both public and private sector clients.

Significant clients City of Edinburgh Council, NHS 24, Department of Health, National Library of Scotland, Calmac Ferries.

Corporate/M&A - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 10 partners
- 30 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Aberdeen, Glasgow, Edinburgh

What the team is known for Offers expertise in representing clients from the energy, financial services and mining sectors. Advises on complex corporate mandates, including M&A, takeovers and private equity work.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They do everything very well; they're a really good full-service firm. We like working with them."

Work highlights The Edinburgh team represented Aker Solutions in its £75 million acquisition of Enovate Systems.

The Aberdeen practice advised new client Red Wing Shoe Company on its acquisition of K & L Ross.

Notable practitioners  

Barry McCaig advises on private equity and corporate finance transactions, acting for clients from the energy and oil and gas sectors. He advised Nevis Capital on its £1.4 million acquisition of James Ramsay Glasgow.

Rosalie Chadwick advises on corporate M&A and finance matters. One client remarked: "She's the expert; she's really very good. She's very practical and will get the completion done."

John Rutherford advises clients from the oil and gas sector on corporate reorganisations, finance, disposals and joint ventures. Sources describe him as "a very responsive, very knowledgeable lawyer."

Market observers say David McEwing is "easy to work with – a no-nonsense lawyer with good technical ability." He combines a strong oil and gas practice with experience in a wide range of corporate matters, including disposals, acquisitions and management buyouts.

Roger Connon heads the Aberdeen office and specialises in corporate finance, disposals and reorganisations. He represented the founding shareholders in the sale of the entire issued share capital of Oteac to a new company formed by Lonsdale Capital Partners. 

Alan Diamond advises on private equity, disposals and acquisitions. Sources say: "He just quietly gets through an enormous pile of work. He's an exceptionally good technical lawyer and clients love him." He acted for Skyscanner on its acquisition of FOGG.

Derek Stroud was the lead partner in the abovementioned £75 million acquisition by Aker Solutions of Enovate Systems.

"Very good to work with and personable" technology expert Anna Brown represented Cupid in the £43 million sale of its dating business.

Kevin Devanny "understands the business and is a useful strategist." He advised JZ International on its acquisition of Winn Solicitors.

According to sources, Jonathan Kirkwood's "ability to draft and turn around complex documents and to simplify complicated issues is truly without comparison."

Significant clients Sparrows Offshore, University of Aberdeen, Helix Energy, Superior Energy, Red Wing Shoe Company.

Employee Share Schemes & Incentives - Scotland

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

What the team is known for Notable expertise in the energy market, with regular advice to clients on new and existing share schemes within that sector. Connected to a large network of UK specialists that the Scottish team can collaborate with, the firm also has international capabilities.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They gave a first-class performance. There is a depth to the team; you are getting people that are easy to deal with and who are sharp all the way down to associate level."

"They consistently provide a high level of service and are very responsive."

Work highlights Assisted Trinity Oil & Gas with the international share scheme issues of its USD140 million acquisition of Bayfield Energy.

Advised Skyscanner on two new incentive plans and the share scheme implications of potential investments into the company. 

Notable practitioners

Karen Davidson is praised for her innovative approach to problem solving. One client noted that her impressive lateral thinking resulted in highly promising results for their share plan participants. Her clients include Trinity Oil & Gas, Iomart and Cupid.

Significant clients Iomart, Epistem, West Coast Capital, Cupid, Havelock Europa.

Health & Safety - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 2 partners
- 13 other qualified lawyers
- Recommended office locations: Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen 

What the team is known for Frequently sought after by high-profile clients in the energy and construction sectors for its advice on major incidents. Particularly strong expertise is seen in its work in the oil and gas sectors. Members of the health and safety team are also routinely called upon to handle matters concerning environmental and regulatory crime.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are a very strong health and safety crime team. Their level of expertise is reflected in the quality of the instructions they get, which are generally more high-profile."

"They all have a grasp on the matter and you can always get the advice you need. Between the three offices, they cover things well with a good level of continuity."

Work highlights Advised on the fatal accident inquiry which was instigated following the death of a driver when two tankers collided on a road maintained by Amey.

Acted for Land Engineering, the principal contractor on a major stone restoration project for the University of Edinburgh, in regards to a prohibition notice the client received concerning unsafe work practices by employees of a scaffolding subcontractor. The firm successfully negotiated a revised notice which identified that the safety failings were caused by the subcontractor, thereby avoiding the need for an evidential hearing.

Notable practitioners  

Laura Cameron has an excellent reputation for handling instructions from clients in the oil and gas sector, and is particularly noted for strong expertise regarding the North Sea.

Tom Stocker's expertise lies in corporate financial crime alongside regulatory matters and he frequently advises on fatal accident inquiries and maritime safety cases.  

William Park regularly receives instructions from those in the offshore oil and gas sector. He has developed extensive experience of fatal accident inquiries.

Significant clients BP Exploration Operating, Shell, Balfour Beatty, Amey, KCA Deutag Drilling.

Litigation - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 29 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Edinburgh

What the team is known for Accomplished practice offering expertise across a wide range of litigation matters. Regularly handles regulatory, business crime and insolvency disputes. Sector expertise includes energy, retail and manufacturing.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The team appreciate the commercial issues instead of getting caught up in legal points."

"We are absolutely satisfied. We rate the team very highly; one of our top firms in Scotland."

Work highlights Acted for BP Exploration Operating Company on the Super Puma Fatal Accident Inquiry, following the death of 16 individuals in the Super Puma helicopter crash in 2009. 

Advised PwC on the administration of a group of property companies, with a portfolio of around 120 properties. 

Notable practitioners  

Jim Cormack is commended by interviewees as "excellent. He is great to deal with and always straightforward. If he tells you something, you can rely on it." He leads the firm's Scottish IP and banking litigation practices.

Craig Connal QC has a broad practice, recently acting for Diageo on claims for damages arising out of the release of ethanol from a manufacturing facility. He appears before the Supreme Court, and is praised by one peer for being "very good on his feet - he is very polished, and understands his brief well."

Laura Cameron is lauded for her extensive knowledge, particularly in the area of health and safety. She is advising BP Exploration on the Fatal Accident Inquiry, and one admiring client reports: "Her contribution to our matter was of the highest calibre."

The highly regarded Jacqueline Harris is praised for her excellent performance in a variety of disputes, including professional negligence, product liability and financial services litigation.

Sources regard Thomas Stocker as "a leading light in Scotland for financial crime." He also handles health and safety and regulatory litigation, winning plaudits for his thorough understanding of the issues.

Significant clients News UK & Ireland, Balfour Beatty, KCA Deutag.

Local Government - Scotland

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

What the team is known for Acting for a number of local authorities across Scotland. The team is notable for its procurement work, especially in relation to TMT, where it is able to leverage the firm's wider expertise to advise on large projects.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They give consistent and understandable advice, using language that is clear and non-legal. They deliver to strict timeframes and work well as a team."

Work highlights Advised City of Edinburgh Council on its high-value re-procurement of ICT infrastructure.

Acted for a number of local authorities including North Lanarkshire Council, on a 25-year waste management contract.

Notable practitioners

Yvonne Dunn is the main contact for this practice area.

Significant clients Glasgow City Council, Highland Council, Stirling Council, Renfrewshire Council, Midlothian Council.

Media & Entertainment - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 1 partners
- 8 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Glasgow

What the team is known for Highly regarded group specialising in film and television investment work, with proficiency handling multi-platform projects. Offers contentious and non-contentious guidance, in addition to its capabilities in regulatory work.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are very good, very responsive and quick." 

"Always eager to follow up any request for advice or guidance." 

Work highlights Advised Creative Scotland on ten multimillion-pound film and television projects.

Advised MG ALBA on a range of broadcast matters in connection with the Gaelic television channel BBC Alba.

Notable practitioners  

Yvonne Dunn leads the firm's non-contentious media practice, handling a variety of film and television investment deals. Clients praise Dunn as "very sparky, fun to work with, very responsive and can turn things round very quickly."

Significant clients Creative Scotland, MG ALBA, The ISO Organisation, Ludometrics, News Corporation. 

Pensions - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 2 partners
- 7 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Glasgow

What the team is known for Market-leading team handling complex pensions matters in Scotland. Able to draw on the strength of its national practice to assist clients across the UK. Advises on the full spectrum of pensions issues, ranging from auto-enrolment to asset-backed financing.

What's new? New clients include Edinburgh Airport, SONI Limited and the Church of Ireland.

Work highlights Acted for Scottish Television on funding arrangements for two of its pension schemes.

Assisted Terex on a range of issues, including auto-enrolment, funding and structuring.

Notable practitioners  

Ian Gordon heads the firm's pensions team and is widely regarded as one of the leading lawyers in the Scottish pensions market. "He is standout in terms of the quality of his work," impressed peers stated. Clients commend his "comprehensive knowledge of pensions law."

Ruth Tobias works with clients in the private and public sectors on issues affecting their pension schemes. Sources describe her as "extremely professional, practical and commercial in her support."

Mairi Black focuses her practice on assisting pension providers. She advises across a range of matters, from scheme mergers to wind-ups, and has in-depth knowledge of self-invested pensions.

Senior associate Jae Fassam has particular experience in corporate transactions with pensions elements. "He is a very good commercially focused pensions lawyer," notes one commentator. He works with clients in both the public and private sectors.

Significant clients Trustees of Caledonian Publishing Pension Scheme, Whyte & Mackay Pension, University of Aberdeen, Forth Ports, Finlays Pension Fund.

Projects - Scotland

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

What the team is known for Receives frequent instructions on high-level matters in areas such as waste, transport and social infrastructure. Represents the public sector alongside bidders and lenders, and also handles secondary market work.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They're a very capable organisation with high-calibre professionals, and their client service and commercial awareness are excellent."

What's new? New client wins, including South West hub.

Work highlights Acted for the City of Glasgow College on its £228 million campus and hall of residence newbuild NPD project.

Advised Balfour Beatty on its bid for the NHS Ayrshire & Arran new community hospital project.

Notable practitioners  

Drysdale Graham's expertise covers areas including transport and education. He regularly acts for bidders and lenders on work in Scotland and Northern Ireland, and sources describe him as "excellent."

Michael Watson heads the firm's global projects group and is well versed in complex financing work. His practice includes significant experience acting for lenders on transport matters.

Legal director Victoria Miller acts in areas including health and transport and has significant experience in secondary market work. She represents bidders, lenders and the public sector, and sources comment that "her market knowledge and experience is excellent. She's pragmatic, very quick and easy to deal with."

Stuart Barr is highly sought after by bidders, lenders and public sector clients for his expertise in areas such as waste and health. Sources point to "his grasp of the market and his ability to understand both sides."

Significant clients BAM PPP, Clyde Valley Waste Authorities, European Investment Bank, Galliford Try Investments, Iridium Concessions.

Retail - Scotland

What the team is known for Multidisciplinary advice with a capacity to operate across the UK. The team acts for a number of large household names.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They have the ability to get the type of deal you want by presenting it to the other side in such a way that, ultimately, we achieve our goal."

Work highlights Advised the landlord of St Enoch shopping centre on potential litigation against an insolvent tenant and its administrator.

Working with Perfect Home on its expansion into Scotland with advice on the acquisition of a seventh store in the country.

Notable practitioners Tom Ferrier is the key contact for the retail team.

Significant clients Martin McColl, New Look, Office Holdings, French Connection, Mamas & Papas.

Tax - Scotland

Basic facts about the department
- 1 partner
- 3 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: Glasgow

What the team is known for Acts for blue-chip companies on tax issues arising as a result of corporate transactions. Particularly strong in the energy sector, regularly advising on matters related to wind power and oil and gas.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Regularly seen in the market, and very good at corporate tax work."

Work highlights Acted for Aker Solutions on the tax aspects of its acquisition of energy services company Enovate Systems, in a £75 million deal.

Advised John Wood Group on the tax ramifications of its purchase of Pyeroy Group.

Notable practitioners  

Director Karen Davidson advises on corporate tax and employee share schemes. She recently advised Aker Solutions on the tax implications of its purchase of Enovate Systems.

Significant clients West Coast Capital, Epistem, iomart, Nevis Capital, Trinity Oil & Gas.