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Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP

New York

  • One Liberty Plaza
  • New York
  • New York
  • USA
  • NY 10006
  • Tel:+1 212 225 2000
  • Fax:+1 212 225 3999
  • Web:Visit website
  • Managing Partner: Mark Leddy
  • Number of partners worldwide: 189
  • Number of lawyers worldwide: 1,200
  • International Offices:  
  • ASIA Beijing, Hong Kong and Seoul
  • EUROPE Brussels, Cologne, Frankfurt, London, Milan, Moscow, Paris and Rome
  • LATIN AMERICA Buenos Aires and São Paulo
  • MIDDLE EAST Abu Dhabi

Firm Overview:
A leading international law firm with 16 offices located in major financial centers around the world, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP has helped shape the globalization of the legal profession for more than 65 years. The firm’s worldwide practice has a proven track record for innovation and providing work of the highest quality to meet the needs of its domestic and international clients. In recognition of the firm’s strong global practice, its effectiveness in dealing with the different business cultures of the countries in which it operates, and its success in multiple jurisdictions, Cleary Gottlieb received Chambers & Partners’ inaugural International Law Firm of the Year award. Cleary Gottlieb seamlessly handles the largest and most innovative matters worldwide. Publications and other data providers that cover the legal and financial industries consistently recognize Cleary Gottlieb for its legal excellence.
Recent firm awards and achievements:
Law Firm of the Year by Legal Business (2013); Best Law Firm by LatinFinance (2013); Top 3 Global Firm by Law360’s “Global 20” List of Preeminent Global Law Firms (2013); Top 10 Innovative Law Firm by Financial Times’ US Innovative Lawyers Report (2013); Global Elite firm every year since the list’s inception by Legal Business’ “Global 100” (2003-2013); Top 25 US Firm (Selected by General Counsel) by Corporate Board Member’s “America’s Best Corporate Law Firms Survey” (2013); Most Innovative US Law Firm in Europe by International Financial Law Review (2011 and 2013); Russian Law Firm of the Year by International Financial Law Review (2010 and 2013); European Legal Team of the Year by Legal Week’s British Legal Awards (2012); South Korea International Firm of the Year by Chambers Asia (2013); Best International Firm Latin America Practice by Euromoney Legal Media Group’s “Americas Women in Business Law Awards” (2012 and 2013); Latin America Law Firm of the Year by Chambers Global (2012).
Practices: Banking Practice Group of the Year by Law360 (2013); Securities Practice Group of the Year by Law360 (2011 and 2013); Real Estate Practice Group of the Year by Law360 (2013); Tax Practice Group of the Year by Law360 (2013); Top Two Elite Competition Firm by Global Competition Review (2011-2014); Restructuring Team of the Year by Legal Business (2013) and The Lawyer Awards (2013); M&A Practice Group of the Year by Law360 (2012); Antitrust Practice Group of the Year by Law360 (2012); Competition/ Antitrust Firm of the Year by Chambers Global (2012 and 2013) and Chambers USA (2011); Standout Securities and Finance Litigation Firm by BTI Litigation Outlook (2013); GAR100 Firm by Global Arbitration Review’s Top Arbitration Firms Worldwide (2013); Investment Funds Client Service Firm of the Year by Chambers USA (2012); International Trade & Finance Firm of the Year by US News & World Report - Best Lawyers’ Best Law Firms (2013).
Workplace & Pro Bono: Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion Award by Bank of America (2013); Diversity Firm of the Year by Benchmark Litigation (2013); Top 10 Law Firm by Vault Guide to the Top 100 Law Firms (2014); Top 15 in Diversity by The American Lawyer’s “Diversity Scorecard” (2013) and Vault Guide to the Top 100 Law Firms (2014); Top 6 in Diversity for LGBT and Minorities by Vault Guide to the Top 100 Law Firms (2014); Best Gender Diversity Initiative by Chambers Latin America Women in Law Awards (2012) (International Law Firm); Pro Bono Firm of the Year by Law360 (2012 and 2013).


New York: Cleary Gottlieb was founded in New York and Washington simultaneously in 1946. The New York office currently has approximately 600 lawyers representing both US and international clients in a wide range of general and highly specialized practice areas. The office’s primary practice areas include corporate; securities; structured finance; mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures; litigation; banking and financial institutions; bankruptcy and restructuring; sovereign governments and international institutions; tax; employee benefits; real estate; and work for individual clients and charitable organizations. Clients include multinational corporations, international financial institutions, sovereign governments and their agencies, as well as domestic corporations and financial institutions.

Washington: The Washington office of Cleary Gottlieb was established in 1946, when the firm was founded, and currently has approximately 100 lawyers. The office’s primary practice areas include antitrust, banking and financial institutions, corporate (including transactional and regulatory), and litigation and enforcement. Clients range from Fortune 500 corporations to government loan agencies.

Areas of Practice

  • Antitrust & Competition
  • Banking & Financial Institutions
  • Bankruptcy & Restructuring
  • Capital Markets
  • Corporate Governance
  • Derivatives
  • Energy
  • Environmental Law
  • Executive Compensation & ERISA
  • Intellectual Property
  • International Trade & Investment
  • Leveraged & Acquisition Finance
  • Litigation & Arbitration
  • Mergers, Acquisitions & Joint Ventures
  • Private Clients & Charitable Organizations
  • Private Equity
  • Privatizations
  • Pro Bono
  • Project Finance & Infrastructure
  • Public International Law
  • Real Estate
  • Sovereign Governments & International Institutions
  • Structured Finance
  • Tax
  • White-Collar Defense, Securities Enforcement & Internal Investigations
  • Asia
  • European Union
  • Latin America
  • Middle East & North Africa


  • One Liberty Plaza,
  • New York,
  • USA
  • NY 10006
  • Tel +1 212 225 2000
  • Fax +1 212 225 3999
  • Website : www.clearygottlieb.com
  • 2000 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW,
  • Washington, DC,
  • District of Columbia
  • USA
  • 20006
  • Tel +1 202 974 1500
  • Fax +1 202 974 1999

Antitrust - District of Columbia

What the team is known for Strong presence in antitrust matters, with exceptional bench strength at all levels. Handles a broad variety of litigation and transactional work and is regularly seen in matters before government agencies.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The quality of the work product is exceptional - clarity and succinctness."

"Cleary is the pre-eminent firm in Washington." 

Work highlights Represented Google in its acquisition of Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion.

Acted for Travelocity in litigation concerning alleged price-fixing in the online hotel booking market.

Notable practitioners  

George Cary is held in the "highest imaginable regard" by sources, who consistently highlight his market-leading abilities in this area. He works in both litigation and merger matters, including recent work for Travelocity in litigation concerning alleged price-fixing in the online hotel booking market.

Managing partner Mark Leddy is an "excellent lawyer" with over 40 years' experience in the antitrust arena. He recently assisted 3M in relation to its offer to purchase the remaining shares in Ceradyne for $860 million.

Mark Nelson is a "phenomenal" practitioner described as "one of the best young lawyers" around. His practice is focused on mergers, including acting for Deutsche Telekom in T-Mobile USA's purchase of MetroPCS.

Leah Brannon is described as a "really good young partner" at the firm and she receives widespread praise for her emerging practice. She handles a range of antitrust matters, including playing a major role in the firm's recent work for Google.

Jeremy Calsyn's practice covers a broad range of antitrust work, including criminal cartel matters. One impressed source notes that: "He's going to be a real star there as the years unfold."

Brian Byrne instills "great confidence" in his clients, and sources also highlight his intelligence. He worked alongside Mark Leddy in the firm's representation of 3M. 

Significant clients Dollar Thrifty, Sabre, W.L. Gore & Associates, Western Digital, IMS.

Corporate/M&A - District of Columbia

What the team is known for International firm with an active transactional and advisory practice. Particularly known for representing financial institutions and provides major clients with cohesive service between New York and DC.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The quality of the work is always top-notch, and there is real good attention to detail on our projects."

Work highlights Acted for Puerto Rican bank holding company Oriental Financial Group on its $500 million acquisition of BBVA's Puerto Rican bank subsidiary.

Advised OneWest Bank on its prepaid debit card joint venture with June Bug Enterprises.

Notable practitioners 

Paul Marquardt handles a range of corporate transactions, including M&A, strategic alliances and private equity matters. He recently advised GfK on its acquisition of strategic healthcare consulting company Bridgehead International.

Significant clients CarVal Investors, Nortel Networks, United Engine Company, ST Residential, TPG.

Antitrust - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key office is Washington, DC.

What the team is known for An antitrust titan at the nationwide level, able to undertake matters in all corners of the US from its nerve center in Washington, DC. Possesses experienced and savvy practitioners of the highest order. Maintains a fine reputation in litigation and transactional work and an excellent track record in matters before government agencies.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They build great networks with clients, are very smart and hard-working and do it in a way that inspires trust and confidence."

"A wonderful law firm with a stellar antitrust practice."

Work highlights Acted for Travelocity on the online travel booking multidistrict litigation alleging anticompetitive conduct by several major accommodation providers.  

Represented Google in the merger clearance aspects of its $12.5 billion acquisition of Motorola Mobility.

Notable practitioners  

George Cary is noted by sources for his remarkable litigation talent, with commentators holding him "in the highest imaginable regard." He has undertaken top-level work in merger clearance and civil litigation matters across a career that spans nearly four decades, including representing Travelocity in the hotels online booking antitrust case.

Mark Leddy is praised for his "great connections with the government" and is considered a "superstar" in his field. He is highly experienced and knowledgeable across the gamut of antitrust work.

Jeremy Calsyn continues to develop a fine reputation in the cartel arena and is described as "very smart and a great writer who works well with others." He recently acted as part of the team advising certain Japanese clients on plea agreements in the autoparts criminal investigation.

Significant clients Dollar Thrifty, Sabre, W.L. Gore & Associates, Western Digital, IMS.

Banking & Finance - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key office is New York.

What the team is known for Particularly recognized for its skill representing borrowers, it is frequently chosen to act on behalf of prominent corporates and private equity groups. Offers capability across a range of financing transactions including projects and acquisitions with notable strength in representing clients on leveraged finance transactions.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They're brilliant, they have great judgment, and all the lawyers are extremely responsive, knowledgeable and good to work with. The culture of the firm is really to be admired."

"They're very responsive, smart and are able to resolve issues quickly. They try to find good solutions for us and bring their own ideas to the table." 

"A tremendous firm with a deep bench of talent that knows how to service its clients."

Work highlights Represented Neiman Marcus in connection with amendments to its existing asset-backed credit facilities and term loan, and on a new $500 million incremental term loan.

Advised Endurance International with regard to its $90 million first lien incremental loan facility.  

Notable practitioners  

Sources note that Laurent Alpert "has a level of experience, insight and judgment that is hard to replace." He concentrates on leveraged buyouts and M&A transactions that typically involve an international element. His clients include private equity firms, and large financial and industrial companies.

Margaret Peponis is described as "a phenomenal secured lending practitioner," who possesses "an encyclopedic knowledge of credit facilities." She advised Bausch + Lomb in relation to the repricing of its senior secured credit facilities. Interviewees were also keen to praise her "calm, smooth and confident demeanor." 

Significant clients TPG Capital, Aerostar Airport Holdings, Sabre Holdings, Kindred Healthcare, CPP.

Bankruptcy/Restructuring - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key office is New York.

What the team is known for Significant work on behalf of debtors and individual creditors in the domestic market, along with recognized expertise pertaining to Latin America. Provides significant value to clients involved in cross-border bankruptcy cases filed in the USA. Recent industry expertise includes shipping, media and telecommunications.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The firm's reputation is great and they have good individual practitioners."

"It goes without saying that they are very good, especially where they are involved with financial institutions."

Work highlights Represented SuperMedia in a prepackaged Chapter 11 case that involved a merger with Dex One, which also filed for Chapter 11 protection, to create the new Dex Media company.

Worked for an ad hoc group of bondholders in the Maxcom Telecommunication restructuring proceedings. The group worked with the client to negotiate an agreement with the Mexican debtor that paved the way for recapitalization and the confirmation of a plan of reorganization.

Notable practitioners  

The "smart and talented" James Bromley is chair of the firm's restructuring group. He has particular expertise in cross-border restructuring matters and works widely with debtors, creditors and other interested parties. Recent highlights include acting for Overseas Shipholding Group in its Chapter 11 case, dealing with international lenders in the process.

Lisa Schweitzer is praised by interviewees as "a very skilled attorney and an accomplished litigator." Her practice focuses on work with debtor companies, individual creditors and investors in distressed assets. She has worked with Fintech Advisory as the major creditor in the Vitro bankruptcy case in the past year.

Significant clients American Roads, Wilmington Trust, Nortel Networks, Bank of New York, HSBC.

Capital Markets - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key office is New York.

What the team is known for Represents issuers and underwriters in market-leading transactions. Superb reputation for advising clients on high-value transactions with a Latin American component.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They have great judgment; all the lawyers are extremely responsive, knowledgeable and good to work with. The culture of the firm is really to be admired."

"They highlight the important issues but they are also troubleshooters."

Work highlights Represented the underwriters led by joint global coordinators Deutsche Bank Securities, Citigroup Global Markets and others in a public offering of approximately $20 billion of common stock in AIG held by the US Treasury.

Advised Petróleo Brasileiro on its Dutch finance subsidiary's $11 billion SEC-registered offering of guaranteed senior notes.

Notable practitioners  

Alan Beller is "incredibly knowledgeable and gives practical advice," one client reports. He is highly recommended for complex securities matters.

Leslie Silverman is acclaimed by clients for the high quality of his advice. He represented Barclays as sole underwriter in a $400 million SEC-registered debt offering by Spirit Airlines.

Nicolas Grabar is "very skillful in negotiations" and is "very helpful on difficult cross-border deals," market sources report. He advised América Móvil in its SEC-registered offering of $1.2 billion of senior notes.

Jeffrey Karpf is "easy to work with" and "has good judgment," impressed clients say. He advised the underwriters on a registered offering of trust preference securities issued by SCE Trust II and guaranteed by Southern California Edison with a value of $400 million.

David Lopez is "smart, knowledgeable and hard-working," say clients. He represented The Hartford Financial Services Group in its capital management plan including Dutch Auction and Waterfall tender offers of $800 million of senior debt.

Craig Brod represented the underwriters led by Citigroup Global Markets, Goldman Sachs and others on American Express's SEC-registered shelf takedown of $850 million of floating rate notes and $1 billion of fixed rate notes. Clients praise his extensive subject knowledge.

Significant clients Credit Suisse, Merrill Lynch, Société Générale, Wells Fargo Securities, Crédit Agricole.

Capital Markets - Nationwide

What the team is known for A popular choice for major financial institutions and other market participants when it comes to sophisticated transactional work. An established market leader in regulatory and enforcement advice, with considerable insight into the developing implications of the Dodd-Frank Act through its influence and involvement in trade groups and industry associations.  

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 
"Cleary has an excellent understanding of the issues clients face in this space, in terms of both the demands of various regulatory requirements and the interplay between commodities, securities and bankruptcy law." 

Work highlights Advises New York Portfolio Clearing on matters relating to the securities considerations of portfolio margining.

Represent Goldman Sachs and Bank of America on total return swap financings on a variety of assets. 

Notable practitioners  

Michael Dayan offers sage and trusted counsel to major financial institutions on a range of derivatives products, with a particular focus on equity derivatives. Dayan "has an incredibly deep expertise and is extremely good at picking up issues that no-one else spots."

Seth Grosshandler deploys his derivatives expertise to great effect in the context of insolvency work and is regularly called on by major banks to advise on regulatory developments in that area. Observers state: "He gives a definitive view of the market, and his view can inform the whole market."

Edward Rosen is a recognized authority on commodities regulation, and boasts considerable experience on a wide range of securities and derivatives transactions. He serves as counsel to the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) on derivatives regulation. 

Esteemed associate Colin Lloyd is making waves in the derivatives regulation space and is a noted expert on Dodd-Frank and Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) regulations. One impressed source states: "I am quite certain that there is no one more knowledgeable than Colin with respect to the vast details within the emerging regulatory labyrinth."

Significant clients Crédit Agricole, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, UBS, ISDA.

Capital Markets - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key offices include New York and DC.

What the team is known for Wins plaudits from market participants for its representation of issuers and underwriters on CLO transactions. Good profile for its expertise on a range of securitization transactions.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"We like their willingness to be available and to find solutions to issues."

"They are very responsive and very knowledgeable."

Work highlights Represented Citigroup Global Markets on 15 CLO offerings totaling over $6.9 billion.

Advised Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith on four CLO offerings with an aggregate value of more than $2.3 billion.

Notable practitioners  

Michael Mazzuchi is a recognized authority on asset-backed work and is regularly engaged to advise on novel and complex structured finance transactions. One market source said: "He is experienced, knowledgeable and outstanding."

Joyce McCarty is a "very sound technical lawyer." She is a frequent choice to advise investment banks on CLO transactions.

Mitchell Dupler is praised for his expertise in advising underwriters on MBS transactions. Clients speak particularly highly of his ability to break down complex ideas into layman's terms.

Significant clients Citibank, Goldman Sachs, Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley, Nomura.

Corporate/M&A - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key offices include New York and Washington, DC.

What the team is known for An established name in the national market, known for high-quality transactional advice on both domestic and cross-border matters.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"I was truly impressed by Cleary; their level of service, knowledge and demeanor."

"My experience with Cleary has been that they are very solid and very good practitioners."

Work highlights Acted for Neiman Marcus Group, Warburg Pincus and TPG Capital on the $6.1 billion sale of Neiman Marcus to Ares Management and the CPP Investment Board.

Acted for entities controlled by Amazon.com founder and CEO Jeffrey Bezos on the $250 million acquisition of The Washington Post from The Washington Post Company.

Notable practitioners

Corporate partner Paul Shim is a key contact.

Significant clients Booz & Company, Google, Brightstar, Scientific Games, Stanley Black & Decker.

Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key office is New York.

What the team is known for Considered a go-to for multinational corporate clients. Offers strategic counsel in matters concerning senior management compensation and has particular experience in the investment banking sector, as well as providing extensive coverage in ERISA compliance.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"These are great executive compensation attorneys." 

"They are very strong in the executive compensation and transactional space"

Work highlights Acted as compensation counsel for Google on numerous transactions including the sale of Motorola businesses and a number of tech acquisitions, including of Wavii, Viewdle and Channel Intelligence.

Provides ongoing compensation program advice to TPG and TPG Opportunities Partners, counseling in connection with carried interest and profits participation programs. 

Notable practitioners  

New York-based Arthur Kohn garners praise from clients who note: "He is an excellent ERISA lawyer who is also knowledgeable in executive compensation and the securities laws applicable to employee benefit plans." Another source admires his breadth of knowledge: "He is smart and well-informed in many different areas of practice."

Brick Susko is singled out by interviewees for his long-standing reputation as "a very well-regarded benefits lawyer." He has an extensive background in broad spectrum benefits, compensation and ERISA matters, including tax and fiduciary concerns.

Significant clients State Street, Verizon, Union Carbide Pension Plan, Citibank, Credit Suisse.

Energy & Natural Resources - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key offices include New York and DC.

What the team is known for Well-regarded practice acting for clients in the global mining sector. Noted for its depth of experience in the sector and regularly acts for mining clients in large M&A transactions, financings and securities matters.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Apart from the knowledge and experience they have, what caught our attention was the very good accessibility of the more senior lawyers. We were always in contact with the whole team - they were involved throughout, which is very valuable to us."

"They have a deep, deep experience in domestic and global mining transaction work; they know what they are doing and they have experience to fall back on."

Work highlights Acted for Vale in the sale of its Colombian coal concerns for $407 million.

Advised Codelco in the financing and acquisition of 29.5% of the equity in Anglo American Sur, a copper mining project, in a deal worth $2.8 billion.

Notable practitioners

Jeffrey Lewis is a key contact at the practice.

Significant clients ArcelorMittal, Alcoa, Alpha Natural Resources, BHP Billiton, Cascade Investment. 

Financial Services Regulation - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key offices include New York and Washington, DC.

What the team is known for Enduring excellence in the financial services arena, with outstanding consistency across a broad range of areas. Market-leading practice advising systemically important financial institutions on the full range of compliance requirements that continue to emanate from Dodd-Frank and the Volcker Rule. Powerful representation of financial services clients with respect to investigations and enforcement actions by regulators. Highly respected presence in the broker-dealer space with respect to cutting-edge engagement with SEC and FINRA rulemaking and enforcement. Impressive track record with respect to transactional matters, with a long history of handling the most complex domestic and cross-border M&A in the financial services space.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"We think they are a leader in this area, and definitely one of the best, if not the best. They have really brilliant lawyers and the caliber of work is outstanding. They're highly regarded by the regulators, who value their analysis and opinion, which makes it important to us because we understand that if we have a question, we have the regulator's ear."

"I consider them to be at the top of the totem pole in terms of firms advising financial institutions. They're very well respected by the folks on the Hill and very well respected by regulatory agencies."

"They're one of our go-to, bet-the-firm type law firms. We get great service from them. They are smart guys and gals: practical thinkers who allow us to conduct our business in the sense that where there's not a ton of clarity from the regulators there's a level of practicality and a risk spectrum that they bring to their analyses of issues."

Work highlights Advised the Institute of International Bankers in connection with a host of issues arising from Dodd-Frank, the Volcker Rule and Basel III.

Represented Bank of America in connection with an SEC investigation into its merger with Merrill Lynch and the payment of employee bonuses by Merrill Lynch.

Represented Bank of America in the sale to Julius Baer Group of its non-US wealth management business. The complex transaction involved the sale of shares and assets across 20 jurisdictions.

Represented numerous broker-dealer clients in FINRA investigations concerning matters including wash sales activity, algorithmic trading strategies and the 2010 Flash Crash.

Notable practitioners  

Robert Tortoriello is one of the most prestigious names in the US financial regulatory firmament, offering banking clients outstanding support in compliance and enforcement matters, in addition to his recognized strength in transactional matters. Sources note that he has "a very firm grip on the underlying law and how it impacts the rest of our businesses." He recently advised the Kingdom of Belgium in connection with the US regulatory aspects of its acquisition of Dexia Belgium.

The hugely well-regarded Derek Bush is a regulatory attorney who routinely advises banks and other financial institutions on ongoing operational compliance issues and M&A matters. Sources affirm that he is "very attuned to the regulatory sphere" and that "he takes the broader view on things so any advice he gives is always in context."

The "first-rate" Michael Krimminger continues to impress commentators with his acumen in the banking regulatory compliance space. He has recently been involved in advising clients on matters stemming from the proposal by the Federal Reserve regarding the restructuring of foreign bank regulation in the USA.

Former SEC general counsel Giovanni Prezioso is one of the firm's heavy hitters in the securities and broker dealer spheres, handling both compliance and enforcement matters for clients. Sources note that his assistance is "invaluable in terms of bringing the SEC perspective to a client," and attest that he "brings great credibility to the table."

David Aman advises broker dealer-clients on regulatory compliance issues, and is described by interviewees as "very careful and methodical when doing an analysis of the issues and interpreting the regulations."

Significant clients Credit Suisse, Bank of America, BNP Paribas, Securities Industry & Financial Markets Association (SIFMA), UBS.

International Arbitration - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key offices include New York and Washington, DC.

What the team is known for Strong and experienced group, handling a range of disputes throughout the world. Maintains a well-established reputation in both the Eastern European and Latin American markets.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They have accumulated a huge amount of experience in the arbitration field."

"Whoever you work with, they all maintain the same level of expertise in all fields and you do not get variations. It is really amazing, and quite unique."  

Work highlights Successfully defended the Ministry of Electricity of the Republic of Iraq in a dispute revolving around a breach of contract claim by Vulcan Energy Solutions, worth $27 million.

Obtained an award for affiliate of longstanding client Vale, blocking the payment of $16 million in reimbursable costs claimed by a contractor.

Notable practitioners  

Jeffrey Rosenthal impresses sources with his "excellent cross-examination" skills. He has notable expertise in disputes arbitrated under the auspices of a range of rules, including those of the ICC, the SCC and the LCIA.

Howard Zelbo is particularly noted by clients and peers for his skills in cross-examination, and for his ability to manage a hearing and control its direction. One source described him as "the most astute guy, able to jump from one issue to another, and then come in between and find the weaknesses."

Significant clients The Argentine Republic, the Russian Federation, Telecom Italia International, OAO Tomskneft, DP World.

Investment Funds - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key office is New York.

What the team is known for Renowned for its global reach and well placed for fund formations with an international element. Transatlantic footprint makes the team a go-to for advice on AIFMD.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They have great expertise across the board and the lawyers are smart, thoughtful and very commercial." 

"They provide great advice in relation to emerging markets and the advice tends to be practical rather than academic." 

Work highlights Continue to advise TPG on a wide range of matters, including the formation of TPG Asia VI, TPG Growth II and TPG ART.

Represented Citigroup in the restructuring and spin-out of major parts of its private equity business.

Notable practitioners  

Sources note Michael Gerstenzang as a "great lawyer" who is a "pleasure to deal with." He is well known for the strength of his fund formation practice, which makes him highly sought in the market.

Elizabeth Lenas covers the full spectrum of private equity and regularly works with some of the industry's most prominent firms.

Significant clients The Raine Group, HSBC, Blackstone Alternative Asset Management.

Private Equity - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key offices include New York and Washington, DC.

What the team is known for Advises major sponsors and their portfolio companies on transactions across a range of business sectors.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They handle a lot of large transactions and bring high-quality partners to bear, which is indicative of their culture."

"They have a strong reputation for private equity work with international elements." 

Work highlights Represented TPG in its acquisition of Envision Pharmaceuticals and in a number of financing matters relating to the transaction.

Advised Bausch & Lomb, a portfolio company of Warburg Pincus, on its $8.7 billion sale to Valeant Pharmaceuticals.

Notable practitioners 

Sources commend Michael Ryan for being "an incredibly great lawyer." He is a hugely experienced practitioner and is sought out by some of the largest private equity groups.

Paul Shim counts premier firms such as TPG among his client base. Sources commend him for his "tremendous expertise, legal skills and strategic thinking."

One impressed source calls Christopher Austin the "best all-around transactional lawyer we work with" because of "his excellent bedside manner, good negotiating skills and complete unflappability."

Projects - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key office is New York.

What the team is known for Active PPP practice representing bidders in infrastructure projects in North and Latin America. Experience on projects such as ports, airports and roads.

Work highlights Represented a joint venture of DP World and Caucedo Development in the refinancing of the project financing of its port facility on the Caucedo Peninsula of the Dominican Republic.  

Notable practitioners  

Richard Lincer is a corporate and finance attorney with a great deal of experience of infrastructure projects in the USA and Latin America. He advised ASUR and Highstar Capital on their 40-year lease to run Puerto Rico's San Juan Luis Muñoz Marin International Airport under a PPP structure.     

Jeffrey Lewis is a "very knowledgeable and creative" transactional and project finance attorney. He acted for Vale as counsel on its Simandou iron ore project in Guinea.

Significant clients Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank, Highstar Capital, ASUR.

Real Estate - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key office is New York.

What the team is known for Recognized quality representation of clients in finance, capital markets and securitization transactions. Enjoys a good reputation for its work in matters relating to complex bankruptcy and distressed real estate.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The firm is exceptional in terms of service to the client; they are extremely responsive to our needs and deliver world class service." 

Work highlights Represented Goldman Sachs in the origination of a $555 million loan to General Growth Properties. This was secured by a portfolio of shopping centers located across Kentucky, Minnesota and Florida.

Notable practitioners  

Steven Horowitz is widely praised by sources who variously describe him as "a great lawyer who is very talented," and "a very practical guy who is smart and hands-on, and an upstanding person." His areas of focus include advising clients on mortgage finance, joint ventures and securitization.

Significant clients American Tower, Kien Huat Realty, Meraas Capital, Jeffrey Bezos, Genting Group.

Securities - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key offices include New York and Washington, DC.

What the team is known for A blue-chip firm in the securities space, most notably with respect to regulatory compliance and enforcement matters. An impressive bench comprising a number of SEC alumni is routinely engaged in the most cutting-edge matters on behalf of some of the world's most recognizable multinationals and financial institutions. Also lauded for its ongoing strength in securities litigation, defending boards of directors, officers and individuals in the most sophisticated and high-stakes matters.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
They have been excellent. They've got a good experience base: knowing the law is one thing but knowing the process and participants is another. The people at Cleary have the situation know-how to get the law implemented.

"Their litigators have been great. These guys understand the deals - that's where the rubber hits the road. You don't have to get them familiar with the transactions - they get the nuts and bolts of practical issues."

"Incredibly smart, quick at getting what is important, excellent writers. We hired them because of their experience in derivative litigation matters."

They have been extremely available at short notice, holidays, weekends, while the partners were on vacation – things always come up at the worst possible time and they've always been gracious and professional.

Work highlights Continued representing numerous financial institutions in the litigation relating to the fraudulent activity of Bernie Madoff. One victory of particular note was the dismissal of class action claims raised by a multitude of foreign investors against HSBC and The Bank of New York Mellon.

Achieved a victory for Marc Gabelli, the portfolio manager of a mutual fund, dismissing all claims brought against him in 2008 by the SEC alleging violation of the Investment Advisors Act.

Notable practitioners

Alan Beller is an expert in the securities regulatory advisory space and is very well reputed for his very broad knowledge and depth of experience. Clients report: "I find him to be an invaluable partner when we have tricky issues around disclosure. He offers valuable insights."

Mitchell Lowenthal, a stalwart of the securities litigation Bar, is regarded as "a consummate professional in expertise and judgment." Sources also describe him as  "pragmatic and extraordinarily diplomatic." Lowenthal recently led a team defending a group of underwriters, including Merrill Lynch, UBS and Morgan Stanley, in class action litigation stemming from five offerings of RBS preference shares. 

Former SEC general counsel Giovanni Prezioso is recognized for his securities regulation expertise in both the enforcement and advisory spaces. Clients describe him as "outstanding, extremely articulate and an excellent communicator in the boardroom."

Significant clients NYSE Euronext, Citigroup Global Markets, Barclays, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase.

Tax - Nationwide

Basic facts about the department
Key offices include New York and Washington, DC.

What the team is known for Has the ability and resources to undertake the full range of corporate tax work, often working on matters with cross-border elements. Restructuring and capital markets remain core strengths. Its enviable client list includes international giants in areas such as electronics, internet services and financial services.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Very knowledgeable, very practical and always anticipating what might be coming next in a very complex situation."

"The tax group are very smart, very thorough in their analysis, and very responsive."

Work highlights Assisted Merrill Lynch with the sale of its international wealth management business to Julius Baer Group. The deal included the transfer of $84 billion of assets under management and 2,000 employees.

Advising Google on the sale of Motorola Home Business to ARRIS Group. The deal was worth $2.35 billion.

Notable practitioners

Key partners include Erika Nijenhuis, James Peaslee and Leslie Samuels, all of whom are based in the New York office. 

Significant clients Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, Overseas Shipholding Group, Citi, Samsung Electronics, Sabre Inc. 

Bankruptcy/Restructuring - New York

What the team is known for Major representations for debtors, creditors, bondholders and hedge funds in national and international restructuring matters. Experienced in using prepackaged reorganization plans in Chapter 11 cases. Also has extensive experience working in international bankruptcy proceedings.  

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They are very good and work with a lot of financial institutions. They are right on the mark."

"They have a lot of international experience - that's their thing." 

Work highlights Represented Overseas Shipping Group, obtaining recognition of a Chapter 11 proceeding in South Africa, reconstructing cash management and renegotiating joint venture terms to reduce its overall debt.

Acted for Wilmington Trust in its role as cochair of the creditors' committee in the bankruptcy proceedings of Residential Capital, reaching a successful settlement with key creditors and securing increased plan contribution of Ally Financial. 

Notable practitioners  

The "smart and talented" James Bromley works with clients including debtors, creditors and strategic investors, among others. He has represented Overseas Shipholding Group in its restructuring under Chapter 11 protection. 

Sean O'Neal is described as "super practical - he knows all the players and has insight into what will happen in a case." He works on company restructurings and bankruptcy litigation issues, and is experienced in advising on prepackaged Chapter 11 cases and associated mergers.

Lisa Schweitzer is "a very skilled attorney and an accomplished litigator" with a client base incorporating a range of major companies facing bankruptcy. She has worked with major creditors in Chapter 11 proceedings.

Lee Buchheit is singled out by one source for his particular skill as a "guru of sovereign debt." His practice largely focuses on international corporate transactions and sovereign debt management.

Significant clients American Roads, HSBC, Citi, Goldman Sachs, MSR Resorts.

Corporate/M&A - New York

What the team is known for Longstanding reputation in the New York market. Frequently called upon for complex and cross-border M&A matters.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They were available 29 hours a day. They handled the transaction so well, smoothed things over and made my life a lot easier."

"They got up to speed very fast. It was a pretty leanly staffed team and the entire team worked well together. We really enjoyed working with them."

Work highlights Advised Google on its $12.5 billion acquisition of Motorola Mobility.

Acted for Bausch & Lomb on its $8.7 billion acquisition by Valeant Pharmaceuticals.

Notable practitioners 

Victor Lewkow handles M&A for public and private companies, as well as advising boards of directors. Clients say he "is really thoughtful and applies a lot of judgment" to transactions. He recently advised the board of directors of National Financial Partners and the special committee of the board in relation to the company's acquisition by Madison Dearborn.

Paul Shim is well regarded by peers and popular with clients, who say: "He is just a phenomenal lawyer. He combines years of experience with tremendous expertise, legal skills and strategic thinking. Has a remarkable demeanor and really commands the room." He acts for both public and private companies, recently representing Dollar Thrift Automotive in its acquisition by Hertz Global Holdings for $2.3 billion.

Michael Ryan's practice covers M&A, corporate and financing matters, and he is especially well known for his work on the private equity side. TPG is a key client.

Senior counsel Daniel Sternberg advises on public and private M&A transactions as well as corporate governance issues.

Christopher Austin remains a popular choice with clients, who say his work is "always top-notch" and appreciate his "really good attention to detail on our projects." He advises on M&A for public and private companies, as well as counseling clients on corporate governance and fiduciary duties.

Ethan Klingsberg handles M&A transactions and advises public companies' boards of directors. He recently acted on Stanley Black & Decker's $1.4 billion sale of its hardware and home improvement group. Clients say he is "really looked to as a trusted adviser in his capacity as outside counsel," and appreciate "his understanding of how business operates." 

Up-and-comer Benet O'Reilly handles M&A and private equity matters. Recent work includes representing Brightstar and its founder, Marcelo Claure, in the $1.26 billion acquisition of a 57% interest in Brightstar by SoftBank.

Significant clients Scientific Games, Oriental Financial Group, Coca-Cola FEMSA, 3M, ABB.

Since publication, Daniel S Sternberg has retired from this practice.

Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation - New York

What the team is known for Excels in executive compensation and corporate governance. Also advises on ERISA fiduciary matters and complex benefits issues arising in connection with M&A. Counsels a diverse range of domestic and multinational companies, including many Fortune 500s.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They have just great technical knowledge and provide good advice."

"Cleary is always phenomenal." 

Work highlights Acted in an advisory capacity to State Street Bank on data generation issues surrounding pension plan services and analytical products.

Advised a task force organized by nonprofit The Conference Board on shareholder engagement matters.  

Work highlights 

The venerable Arthur Kohn continues to build on his exceptional depth and breadth of knowledge in employee benefits, executive compensation and pension compliance matters. Commentators variously hail him as "outstanding" and "easy to deal with, smart, affable and terrific."

Robert Raymond holds a wealth of experience in private investment fund work, particularly acting for eminent financial institutions in connection with compensation arrangements. He is lauded as "a really creative guy" who is "thoughtful and considerate."

Michael Albano operates a full-service benefits and compensation practice, including ERISA fiduciary and employment law matters. One observer asserts: "He has a lot of technical skills and sees how certain compensation packages might be viewed. He's a good thought leader on projects."

Counsel Mary Alcock is particularly well recognized for her ERISA and fiduciary pension capabilities, with sources regarding her as "very strong" and especially skilled in ERISA fiduciary matters. She also advises on compensation disclosure, plan design and regulatory compliance.

The highly regarded Brick Susko is senior counsel at Cleary, and is declared by sources to be "terrific." He is acclaimed for his expertise in ERISA and is skilled in benefits and transactional work, including in M&A and bankruptcy contexts. 

Significant clients Honeywell, McDonald’s, The Washington Post, Whirlpool, American Express.

Latin American Investment - New York

What the team is known for Dominant market position across a range of transactional work throughout the region. Unparalleled bench of experts in New York, with a presence on the ground in São Paulo and Buenos Aires. Provides first-rate services for an impressive client base which includes multiple Latin American corporates and sovereign states.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Cleary Gottlieb is in a category of its own, it has been in Latin America for many years. I feel very comfortable working with all of their lawyers."

"They are at the forefront of the market in Mexico, Chile, Argentina and Brazil; they're the only firm who can claim to be a top contender in each country."

"They are consistently good; every single lawyer that we come across has been committed to the work, and they give an opinion because they have thought it out and it holds and stands the test of time."

Work highlights Represented Citibank and HSBC as the initial purchasers of YPF’s $150 million floating-rate notes due 2018 in the first cross-border debt offering by an Argentine issuer since YPF's nationalization in April 2012.

Acted for Itaú Unibanco in its BRL2.77 billion acquisition of Citigroup’s Brazilian consumer finance business, including its credit card business.

Notable practitioners  

Jorge Juantorena is highly visible in Mexico for his capital markets work and expertise across M&A and banking and finance. Interviewees comment that "he has a unique set of capabilities. He knows the client, the market, the needs of the banks, and he knows how deals are done." He recently acted for the underwriters, including Morgan Stanley and Bank of America Merrill Lynch, on Banorte’s $2.5 billion global offering of common shares.

Jeffrey Lewis is active across the region in high-profile M&A matters. He represented Corporación Nacional del Cobre de Chile in its acquisition of 29.5% of Anglo American Sur and the refinancing of the $1.87 billion acquisition loan made by Mitsui. Clients say that "his precision and strategic view are great, and he is very responsive."

Francesca Odell is well known for her focus on Brazil, particularly for her work with key client Petrobras, which she recently advised in its $11 billion SEC-registered offering of senior notes which were listed on the NYSE. Peers describe her as "a high-quality lawyer and someone who speaks the language."

Jaime El Koury is highly rated for his work in capital markets, M&A and finance in Argentina and across the wider region, where he is known as "a big name." He recently assisted franchise bottler Coca-Cola FEMSA in obtaining a $1.5 billion term loan from Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ and others.  

Richard Cooper's experience in banking and projects garners great respect among peers, who also note his expertise on restructuring matters. He acted for a group of OGX Petróleo e Gás Participações bondholders in relation to the restructuring of OGX and its subsidiaries. Clients comment that "he is creative in his thought processes and negotiations."

Nicolas Grabar impresses peers and clients alike with his command of capital markets transactions. He represented América Móvil in its MXN15 billion SEC-registered offering of senior notes. Clients consider him to be "skillful in negotiations and very clear in his ideas." 

Carmen Amalia Corrales is highly regarded for her work on sovereign offerings. She recently assisted the United Mexican States with its issuance of EUR1.6 billion of notes listed on the Luxembourg stock exchange. Sources say: "She can put herself in the shoes of the client and understands the political climate." Peers acknowledge that "she is very focused on getting the deal done and a delight to work with." 

Significant clients Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Gas Argentino, Dow Chemical, Pluspetrol Resources, Republic of Chile, Oriental Republic of Uruguay.

Litigation - New York

What the team is known for Commended for its leading ability to handle high-value complex litigation for an impressive roster of clients. Significant representation of financial institutions in major commercial litigation. Also highlighted for its depth of expertise in the securities arena and a strong bench of litigators skilled in white-collar criminal defense work.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They are very smart, have a wealth of experience in these areas and do a good job drawing upon past experience to be able to anticipate six steps ahead in the cases they're handling. In terms of client service they are the best - they are responsive, get back to me immediately and make me feel I am their only client."

"Cleary Gottlieb brings a huge amount of brain power to the party as well as fantastic insight as to how things will play out. They have consistently produced the goods over the years."

"They are incredibly smart, quick at getting what is important, and excellent writers. We hired them because of their experience in derivative litigation matters."

Work highlights Defense counsel to the Argentine Republic in numerous litigations both within and outside the USA arising out of the 2001 Argentine financial crisis and massive sovereign debt default.

Represented AG Financial Products in an action brought by Lehman Brothers. The claimant is seeking damages in relation to credit derivative transactions entered into by the parties.

Acted on behalf of major financial institutions in connection with numerous regulatory and criminal investigations relating to allegations of Libor manipulation.

Notable practitioners  

Highly regarded securities litigator Mitchell Lowenthal recently advised Bank of America Merrill Lynch in multiple RMBS litigations brought by institutional investors across the USA. One client notes that he is "always thinking ahead of the game, keeping me apprised of what's going on and thinking through issues very carefully for me."

David Brodsky is praised for his strategic approach and handles a wide array of white-collar matters including significant fraud-related cases, FCPA and insider trading investigations. Sources commend him for being "very smart; he gets to the heart of a matter, strips away the complications and focuses on what is important." 

Lev Dassin is described by sources as "very quick and steady - he can assimilate facts quickly, works through new material quickly and gets to the bottom of investigations." His recent highlights include reaching a settlement with the DOJ for Alpha Natural Resources.

Lewis Liman continues to receive praise for his expertise in handling complex white-collar defense work. His broad experience extends to the securities arena and his recent work includes playing a key role in litigation arising out of the Madoff Ponzi scheme.  

"Detailed, insightful and proactive," Lawrence Friedman has extensive experience in handling complex commercial litigation. His recent representations include acting on behalf of Crédit Agricole in Madoff-related litigation.

"Tenacious advocate" Thomas Moloney has a broad civil litigation practice with particular expertise in representing financial institutions. He recently defended HSBC in significant bankruptcy litigation arising out of the Madoff fraud.

Significant clients Goldman Sachs, Bank of America, Barclays, HSBC, American Express.

Real Estate - New York

What the team is known for Outstanding reputation for its expertise in advising clients on the full range of commercial real estate finance transactions. Particularly highly recommended for its expertise on finance matters.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They are task-focused, businesslike and responsive to clients."

Work highlights Advised Goldman Sachs in relation to a $500 million mortgage loan to Macerich for the financing of the Kings Plaza Shopping Center in Brooklyn.

Acted for American Tower on simultaneous loan origination and securitizations of mortgages on interests in over 5,000 cell phone tower sites with a value of $1.8 billion.  

Notable practitioners  

Steven Horowitz is highly commended by sources for his technical skills in real estate finance. He advised Brookfield Office Properties on its $2.1 billion merger agreement to acquire MPG Office Trust.

Michael Weinberger is "supremely talented" and "will get difficult deals done," market sources say. He represented Goldman Sachs on loans to subsidiaries of General Growth Properties, including a loan secured by Ala Moana Center worth $1.4 billion.

According to commentators, Steven Wilner is "very attentive," "understands the business and economics of transactions," and is "good to have on your side." He advised YOTEL and IFA Hotels & Resorts on the refinancing of the YOTEL hotel in New York City.

Kimberly Blacklow advised H/2 Capital on the restructuring of its securitized loan portfolios. She represents both lenders and borrowers.

Significant clients Meraas Capital, Banco Inbursa, Empire Resorts, Kindred Healthcare, Montparnasse 56.

Tax - New York

What the team is known for Offers high-quality advice on a broad range of transactions and controversies. Demonstrates particular expertise in the tax aspects of restructurings, capital markets and private equity funds on behalf of a series of prominent financial institutions.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The tax group is very smart, very thorough in its analysis and very responsive."

"They are very knowledgeable and very practical. They always think one step ahead and anticipate what might be coming next in a very complex situation. The partners are very engaged." 

Work highlights Advised Overseas Shipholding Group in connection with the international tax aspects of a series of restructuring matters, and its Chapter 11 reorganization.

Advised Google on the tax issues arising from the sale of its Motorola Home business. The transaction carried a value of $2.35 billion.  

Notable practitioners  

Erika Nijenhuis is regarded as "one of the leading tax lawyers in New York." She is recognized as an authority on financial products, and is valued by clients as a practitioner who is "incredibly thorough, very smart and great to bounce ideas off." 

James Peaslee is an expert in the field of securitizations. Clients describe him as an "extremely knowledgeable and experienced" practitioner who "brings a lot of depth to transactions, really knows the market and has a very powerful intellect."

Leslie Samuels handles a broad range of international and domestic tax matters, including those concerning financial products and M&A. "He is a big name in the New York tax world, and a very strong lawyer," states a market source.

James Duncan specializes in the tax aspects of securities offerings, acquisitions, joint ventures and restructurings. He is regarded as "an excellent lawyer in the international area," and is known for being "extremely bright and a creative thinker."

Yaron Reich handles a variety of domestic and international tax matters, including insolvencies, acquisitions and restructurings. "He is very articulate, very smart and very enjoyable to work with," according to clients.

Jason Factor is an authority on private equity funds, acquisitions, divestitures, hedge funds and joint ventures. Sources say: "He is a smart and thoughtful tax practitioner," and "when he speaks, people listen."

William McRae is regarded by market sources as "a very smart lawyer who is adept in the field of financial products." He is also experienced in matters concerning international M&A, and is valued by clients as a practitioner who "gets a deal done and is very personable."

Significant clients Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, The Hartford, Citi, Goldman Sachs.