Mishcon de Reya, Allen & Overy (A&O) and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer were among the major winners at the 2017 Legal Business Awards, with Macfarlanes’ senior partner Charles Martin recognised as Management Partner of the Year.
Mishcon (pictured) was named Law Firm of the Year for the second time in five years, winning the most coveted award for what is been a startling run over the last decade (as can be seen in our December cover feature ‘The USP – What is Mishcon’s secret formula?‘.
A&O was of the one night’s main winners, picking up two awards: Competition Team of the Year and Legal Innovator of the Year, thanks to the successful launch of its MarginMatrix product and collaboration with Deloitte. Meanwhile, Freshfields picked up one of the most sought-after awards, Private Equity Team of the Year, for its role advising Advent International on the £1.5bn sale of the Priory Group to Acadia Healthcare.
Our Lawyer of the Year award this year was given to commemorate the work and life of the late Frances Murphy of Slaughter and May, one of the finest City M&A partners of her generation.
In other key practice categories, Clifford Chance was selected as Corporate Team of the Year for its role advising National Australia Bank on the three-and-a-half year-long demerger and subsequent listing of CYBG; while Ropes & Gray won Finance Team of the Year for advising Virgin Media on two innovative transactions. In one of the most competitive slots, Latham & Watkins was named US Law Firm of the Year.
Gowling WLG was a joint winner alongside Hogan Lovells in the Real Estate Team of the Year category, then returned to the stage to pick up the CSR Programme of the Year award for its work on establishing the Suited For Success charity.
Our disputes category was split for the first time this year, with Boies, Schiller & Flexner named Commercial Litigation Team of the Year for obtaining the first summary judgment from the Financial List in a landmark case for Barclays, while Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom picked up the International Arbitration Team of the Year award for securing victory for the Republic of South Sudan in its ICSID dispute with Sudapet Company.
Other major awards saw Virgin Media’s legal team named In-House Team of the Year for its role in the success of two major initiatives for the company in the last year, while Scotland’s leading independent, Brodies, picked up National/Regional Firm of the Year after a very strong 2016.
The awards were presented to 900 guests in a gala ceremony last night (23 March) hosted by renowned journalist and newscaster Alastair Stewart. The event was preceded by a reception to mark the launch of this year’s GC Powerlist report.
The winners were selected by an external judging panel comprising the following senior general counsel: Nilema Bhakta-Jones, group legal director of Ascential Group; Claire Chapman, general counsel (GC) and company secretary of Daily Mail and General Trust; Kate Cheetham, general counsel at Lloyds Banking Group; Kirsty Cooper, group GC and company secretary at Aviva; Claire Debney, director of legal strategy at Shire; Chris Fowler, GC UK Commercial for BT; FT GC Dan Guildford; Geoffrey Timms, GC and company secretary at Legal & General Group; Zoopla Property Group GC Ned Staple; Nigel Paterson, general counsel at Dixons Carphone; Nyeem Syed, assistant GC, financial & risk at Thomson Reuters; and Tony Williams of Jomati as well as Alex Novarese and Mark McAteer from Legal Business.
Our May edition will include a full report of the night. For more details on the awards, click here.
Legal Business Awards 2017 – The Winners
Bristows – TMT Team of the Year
Ropes & Gray – Finance Team of the Year
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom – International Arbitration Team of the Year
Ashurst – Restructuring Team of the Year
Allen & Overy – Competition Team of the Year
CMS Cameron McKenna – Energy and Infrastructure Team of the Year
Boies, Schiller & Flexner- Commercial Litigation Team of the Year
Irwin Mitchell – Private Client Team of the Year
Bond Dickinson – Insurance Team of the Year
Clifford Chance – Corporate Team of the Year
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer – Private Equity Team of the Year
Gowling WLG/Hogan Lovells – Real Estate Team of the Year
Three Crowns – Boutique of the Year
Frances Murphy, Slaughter and May – Lawyer of the Year
Gowling WLG – CSR Programme of the Year
Vieira de Almeida – International Firm of the Year
Ahsan Gulabkhan, Virgin Atlantic – Rising Star In-House Counsel of the Year
Virgin Media – In-House Team of the Year
Charles Martin, Macfarlanes – Management Partner of the Year
Latham & Watkins – US Law Firm of the Year
Allen & Overy – Legal Innovator of the Year
Linklaters – Legal Technology Team of the Year
Brodies – National/Regional Firm of the Year
Mishcon de Reya – Law Firm of the Year