Comment: Victories, defeats and growing up – Ashurst faces up to life after Charlie

Comment: Victories, defeats and growing up – Ashurst faces up to life after Charlie

Here’s one anecdote that didn’t make it into this month’s extended focus on Ashurst. Sometime soon after the firm had pulled back from its late-1990s dalliance with Clifford Chance (CC), the first of three public failed merger bids for the firm, at least one partner had second thoughts. An overture was made to the Magic Circle …

Comment: ‘Mishcon’ no more but a City player at last? Wragges needs a big deal and the old magic

Comment: ‘Mishcon’ no more but a City player at last? Wragges needs a big deal and the old magic

‘Wragge & Co was the Mishcon of its day.’ That statement from a former veteran of the Midlands giant sums it up in many ways. In the late 1990s Wragges wasn’t just the best law firm the English regions had bred, it was a firm that broke the rules. The mix of flair, quality lawyering …

The New New Normal – a changing market beckons for 2014

The New New Normal – a changing market beckons for 2014

The last three years have drawn to a close heralding another 12 months much like those that went before: depressing. The eurozone flirting with break-up, fiscal woes holding back Western economies and a subdued legal market. Check, check and check. But drawing to the end of 2013, commercial lawyers are facing an outlook that is, …

‘Mishcon’ no more but a City player at last? Wragges needs a big deal and the old magic

‘Mishcon’ no more but a City player at last? Wragges needs a big deal and the old magic

‘Wragge & Co was the Mishcon of its day.’ That statement from a former veteran of the Midlands giant sums it up in many ways. In the late 1990s Wragges wasn’t just the best law firm the English regions had bred, it was a firm that broke the rules. The mix of flair, quality lawyering …

Comment: Forget Dewey – in Wall Street star power is greater than ever

Comment: Forget Dewey – in Wall Street star power is greater than ever

I flew into Manhattan to The New Yorker chronicling the death of Big Law with a pacey dissection of the fall of Dewey & LeBoeuf. Three days later I flew out to The New York Times covering the fee bonanza for Wall Street lawyers generated by J.P. Morgan’s regulatory nightmare. There you have it – …

Comment: 2006 and all that – an oh-so-familiar mess at Linklaters

Comment: 2006 and all that – an oh-so-familiar mess at Linklaters

The most hackneyed cliché of the pundit is history repeating itself, a claim that rarely holds up upon closer examination. But with the recent departure of Linklaters’ private equity co-heads Ian Bagshaw and Richard Youle for White & Case, well, sometimes you just can’t escape the past. Personality clashes, a mid-market practice not gelling with …

Forget Dewey – in Wall Street star power is greater than ever

Forget Dewey – in Wall Street star power is greater than ever

I flew into Manhattan to The New Yorker chronicling the death of Big Law with a pacey dissection of the fall of Dewey & LeBoeuf. Three days later I flew out to The New York Times covering the fee bonanza for Wall Street lawyers generated by J.P. Morgan’s regulatory nightmare. There you have it – …

Those US mergers keep coming – Orrick closes in on deal with Pillsbury to forge top 10 giant

Those US mergers keep coming – Orrick closes in on deal with Pillsbury to forge top 10 giant

One of the most prolific merger suitors of recent years – Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe – is at it again with the top 30 US practice close to securing a merger with the 600-lawyer practice Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman. The discussions, which were confirmed on Friday (25 October), could see Orrick sign a letter of …

IBA 2013: ‘We need to be the tip of the spear’ – the global anti-corruption push is gathering pace

IBA 2013: ‘We need to be the tip of the spear’ – the global anti-corruption push is gathering pace

With a packed programme at the International Bar Association’s (IBA) annual conference in Boston, working out which of the many (and sometimes dry) debates to attend is a challenge, but one of the stand-outs from the first day was the discussion on anti-corruption. That this session was packed is unsurprising; one of the major forces …

Comment: The mindset for 21st century law – be optimistic and afraid and you’ll do fine

Comment: The mindset for 21st century law – be optimistic and afraid and you’ll do fine

A law firm pumps out marketing bumpf about how awesome it is and it is received – with ample justification – as self-serving twaddle. An alternative legal services provider pumps out marketing bumpf about how awesome it is and it is met with a round of applause, rather than as the self-serving twaddle wrapped in …