Legal Business

Gordons and A&O on Morrisons panel as L&G cuts roster

Gordons and A&O on Morrisons panel as L&G cuts roster

One of the UK’s largest supermarket chains, Morrisons, last month finalised its first-ever legal panel, with Allen & Overy (A&O), Ashurst, DAC Beachcroft and Eversheds among the firms selected. Selection was overseen by the company’s recently appointed general counsel Mark Amsden.

Forty firms made the long list, which was whittled down to a shortlist of 22. There are 14 firms on the panels. Amsden divided the panel into six categories: employment, property, personal injury, licensing and regulatory as well as one panel covering ‘everything else’ – corporate, commercial, litigation, pensions and intellectual property. One more panel covers Scotland, with DWF and MacRoberts selected.

Legal Business

In-house: A&O, Ashurst and Eversheds on Morrisons first-ever legal panel

In-house: A&O, Ashurst and Eversheds on Morrisons first-ever legal panel

One of the UK’s largest supermarket chains, Morrisons, has revealed its first-ever legal panel, with Allen & Overy (A&O), Ashurst, DAC Beachcroft and Eversheds are among the 15 firms selected, which was overseen by the company’s recently appointed general counsel Mark Amsden.

40 firms made the long list, which was whittled down to a shortlist of 22. Amsden divided the panel into six categories: employment, property, personal injury, licensing and regulatory as well as one panel covering ‘everything else’ – corporate, commercial, litigation, pensions and intellectual property. One more panel covers Scotland, with DWF and MacRoberts selected.

Property is perhaps the most lucrative panel for external advisers, as this is where over half of Morrison’s legal spend is allocated. Wragge & Co and Gordons had previously advised the company on its property deals and are now joined by DAC Beachcroft, Eversheds and Browne Jacobson.

Gordons has been a long-time main adviser to Morrisons in the past, having advised the supermarket on an exclusive three-year supply contract with EDF in 2011 and wins a place on each of the four panels the firm applied for.

John Holden, senior partner at Gordons, told Legal Business: ‘We’ve had a great relationship with Morrisons for a number of years and are looking forward to the opportunity to develop the relationship further with our panel appointments.’

The employment panel is made up by A&O, Ashurst, Eversheds and Gordons with DAC Beachcroft and Gordons on the personal injury panel.

Douglas Lamb, a partner with MacRoberts, said: ‘Morrisons is one of the biggest brand names in the UK and we are delighted to have been appointed as Scottish solicitors on their new legal panel. We look forward to continuing our longstanding relationship with them and supporting their business objectives in Scotland.’

Ashurst recently advised Morrisons on its £216m deal to launch an online grocery service with Ocado in 2014, with Slaughter and May advising Ocado. It is understood that the Ashurst and A&O will handle the larger corporate mandates of the supermarket as key firms on the ‘everything else’ panel, which includes DWF, Eversheds, Gordons, IP specialist Marks & Clark and Wragges.

Amsden has seen his in-house legal team double in size to eight since joining the supermarket from Addleshaw Goddard in February.

david.stevenson@legalease.co.uk

 

The panels

Employment

Allen & Overy

Ashurst

Eversheds

Gordons

 

Licensing and regulatory

Blake Lapthorn

Browne Jacobson

DAC Beachcroft

DWF

Gosschalks

MacRoberts


Personal injury

DAC Beachcroft

Gordons

 

Property

Browne Jacobson

DAC Beachcroft

Eversheds

Gordons

Wragge & Co

 

Scotland

DWF

Macroberts

 

Everything else

Allen & Overy

Ashurst

DWF

Eversheds

Gordons

Marks & Clerk

Wragge & Co

Legal Business

Ashurst takes lead role in headline deals

Top 15 UK firm advises clients Commerzbank and Morrisons

Ashurst is leading on two headline transactions announced in mid-May as Germany’s Commerzbank entered talks to sell £4bn of its UK property loans and supermarket Morrisons signed a long-term deal with online grocer Ocado.

The top 15 UK law firm is advising longstanding client Commerzbank on the proposed sale of its Eurohypo UK operation to US bank Wells Fargo and private equity group Lone Star.

The work was awarded to Ashurst following a competitive pitch in November 2012. For Ashurst, which had an existing relationship with Commerzbank through its German operations, this will be the first corporate M&A deal it has advised Germany’s second-largest bank on, having undertaken largely finance mandates in the past.