‘Only the beginning’: Latham adds more than $300m to top line as Sidley nears £100m in the City

‘Only the beginning’: Latham adds more than $300m to top line as Sidley nears £100m in the City

A year after becoming the first law firm to break the $3bn barrier, Latham & Watkins has posted an even stronger set of financial results, growing revenue at a faster 11% rate to hit $3.386bn in 2018.

Meanwhile, Sidley Austin joined the growing number of US firms to report double-digit growth for their City operations in 2018, hiking London revenue 14% to £97.5m. Continue reading “‘Only the beginning’: Latham adds more than $300m to top line as Sidley nears £100m in the City”

MoFo strikes London pay dirt with hire of Latham finance co-chair Kandel

MoFo strikes London pay dirt with hire of Latham finance co-chair Kandel

Further evidence of significant lateral movement between US players in London emerged today (7 February), with news that one the City’s most respected finance veterans, Chris Kandel, has quit Latham & Watkins after nine years to join Morrison & Foerster’s resurgent City arm.

Kandel, a standout performer with a proven track record in leveraged finance, acquisition finance and restructuring, joined Latham in 2010 from White & Case, where he was co-head of the London bank finance practice. He was global co-chair of Latham’s finance offering. Continue reading “MoFo strikes London pay dirt with hire of Latham finance co-chair Kandel”

Pharma just the tonic for US firms leading on Boston Scientific’s £3bn bid for BTG

Pharma just the tonic for US firms leading on Boston Scientific’s £3bn bid for BTG

An array of City and US firms have landed roles advising on Boston Scientific’s buyout of British healthcare firm BTG in the latest bumper deal in the pharmaceutical sector. Allen & Overy (A&O), Shearman & Sterling, Travers Smith, White & Case, and Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer were all called upon to advise on the deal, continuing a spate of takeovers in the UK healthcare market.

Shearman acted as lead counsel for longstanding client Boston Scientific, with a team headed by New York corporate partner Clare O’Brien alongside London-based veteran Europe and Middle East M&A head Laurence Levy. City firm Travers worked alongside Shearman, with partner Mahesh Varia advising on share option schemes, while Arnold & Porter Washington DC antitrust partner Michael Bernstein was also drafted in by Boston Scientific. Continue reading “Pharma just the tonic for US firms leading on Boston Scientific’s £3bn bid for BTG”

Dealwatch: Pre-Christmas run of real estate and power deals for US and City players

Dealwatch: Pre-Christmas run of real estate and power deals for US and City players
  • Herbert Smith Freehills (HSF) is advising entertainment and communications company ARRIS on its proposed $7.4bn acquisition by CommScope Holding Company. The HSF team is led by corporate partners Gavin Davies, Alex Kay and Caroline Rae. Pinsent Masons is acting for CommScope on the acquisition with corporate partners Rob Hutchings and Roberta Markovina leading. Alston & Bird also advised CommScope while fellow US outfit Troutman Sanders acted alongside HSF for ARRIS.

Continue reading “Dealwatch: Pre-Christmas run of real estate and power deals for US and City players”

Bumpy road for US firms in Asia as Reed Smith, Cleary and Shearman lose out to local players

Bumpy road for US firms in Asia as Reed Smith, Cleary and Shearman lose out to local players

China and Hong Kong are becoming increasingly challenging places for the global elite as the competition for talent from local shops intensifies. Among the most recent victims were Reed Smith, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton and Shearman & Sterling, which lost out to Australian firm MinterEllison, King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) and Fangda Partners respectively.

A six-partner disputes team of David Morrison, William Barber, Nathan Dentice, Alex Kaung, Eddy So and Desmond Yu quit Reed Smith’s Hong Kong base over what Asia-Pacific managing partner Denise Jong described as client conflict issues. They will join MinterEllison at the beginning of next year. Continue reading “Bumpy road for US firms in Asia as Reed Smith, Cleary and Shearman lose out to local players”

The Global 100 debate – Will stars or institutions define the law’s elite?

The Global 100 debate – Will stars or institutions define the law’s elite?

Alex Novarese, Legal Business: Ten years ahead, what will a global elite firm look like?

Charlie Jacobs, Linklaters: I don’t think it’s going to go the accountancy way, where you just go bigger and the Big Four dominate. A lot of focus seems to be around profitability and if you are driven by that metric, you get a certain type of firm. When I started, it was the Magic Circle in London and a certain category of US firms. We have seen lots of change. But I don’t see just one model prevailing. Continue reading “The Global 100 debate – Will stars or institutions define the law’s elite?”

Global 100: Wrecking ball – Inside Kirkland & Ellis’ creative destruction

Global 100: Wrecking ball – Inside Kirkland & Ellis’ creative destruction

They said rapid growth is hard if you are already big. Last year it hiked revenue 19% from $2.65bn. They said profitability is about focusing on quality over growth. As it became the highest grossing law firm in the world, fee-earner headcount surged 13.5% to over 2,000 and profit per equity partner (PEP) was up nearly 15% to $4.7m. They said a sprawling international footprint is essential if you want to secure high-end mandates. It has just 14 offices – only five outside the US – and generated $3.165bn in 2017. They said global law firms need bank clients. It is famously dismissive of banks and their onerous panels.

Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of Kirkland & Ellis’ meteoric rise over the last decade is how it turned BigLaw’s playbook on its head. The Chicago-bred giant has not only outperformed the profession’s elites in London and New York but challenged the very assumptions underpinning the legal industry’s decades-spanning pecking order. Continue reading “Global 100: Wrecking ball – Inside Kirkland & Ellis’ creative destruction”

Deal watch: HFW acts for Greek government on major state sell-off while US firms score heavyweight mandates

Deal watch: HFW acts for Greek government on major state sell-off while US firms score heavyweight mandates

In a deal of major national significance, Holman Fenwick Willan (HFW) and Clifford Chance (CC) have advised the Greek state on the €535m privatisation of its gas network. Meanwhile US leaders  Kirkland & Ellis, Weil Gotshal & Manges and Jones Day have also acted on substantial buyouts recently.

The sale of the natural gas transmission system operator, DESFA, is part of Greece’s wider strategy of disposing assets to reduce the country’s debt following the financial crisis. The deal implies a total equity value for DESFA of €810m. Continue reading “Deal watch: HFW acts for Greek government on major state sell-off while US firms score heavyweight mandates”