22 January 2001

The Lawyer

  • A change of court

    22-Jan-2001

    Justice delayed is justice denied. Reform of the European Community's judicial system is urgently required. The volume and complexity of European Community (EC) cases is growing rapidly, causing the community's court system to haemorrhage. There is already an average of a two-year delay for preliminary rulings. The case then returns to the national court, resulting in more delays for litigants. And things will only get worse when the enlargement of the European Union occurs.

  • A Little Extra

    22-Jan-2001

    Neil Ogilvie, head of legal at Littlewoods, has a complex role with the company repositioning itself in the market place while downsizing its staff. Mary Murphy reports on the cut and thrust of the high street.

  • A VIEW from brussels

    22-Jan-2001

    Signs of a possible slowdown in the US economy have prompted fears of a knock-on effect on the rest of the world, including Europe. If these fears materialise, one might expect a reduction in the number of large mergers being reviewed in Brussels.

  • A year ago this week

    22-Jan-2001

    Axa suspends Berrymans and Kennedys from litigation workThe Lawyer revealed that Axa Insurance had suspended Berrymans Lace Mawer and Kennedys from handling litigation claims for the company after failing an audit.In a letter dated 10 January 2000, Axa's external legal advisers ...

  • A&O ramps up New York presence

    22-Jan-2001

    Allen & Overy is dramatically expanding its New York presence after ruling out a US merger in the near future.The firm is leasing 135,000sq ft in a building in central Manhattan, with space to house 150 lawyers. The firm currently has just 45 lawyers in the city.Managing partner of the office Carl Sheldon says: "We have aggressive growth plans in New York. We don't ...

  • Ashursts partner is European champ

    22-Jan-2001

    An Ashurst Morris Crisp partner has scored the highest number of European corporate deals during 2000, beating his counterparts at Slaughter and May and Linklaters & Alliance.Corporate partner Adrian Clark notched up ...

  • Beachcrofts shuts office after NHS cut

    22-Jan-2001

    Beachcroft Wansbroughs is closing its Sheffield office after the National Health Service Litigation Authority's (NHSLA) decision to remove the office from its panel (The Lawyer, 15 January).Beachcrofts has lost NHSLA work in London and Sheffield, although it remains on the panel in Winchester and has won a new Bristol contract.The decision to close Sheffield follows a review of the firm's Yorkshire operations to decide if the Leeds and Sheffield offices ...

  • Blow away

    22-Jan-2001

    It was a huge accolade, but for Herbert Smith partner Stephen Gale there was a sting in the tail. When he was nominated to be the president of the Society of Practitioners of Insolvency (SPI), it must have seemed as if he had reached a pinnacle. The SPI, the professional association of insolvency specialists comprising both lawyers and accountants, had only ever had one lawyer president in its history - Gordon Stewart, insolvency partner at

  • BOOK REVIEW

    22-Jan-2001

    World War 3.0: Microsoft and its Enemies, by Ken Auletta, published by Random House (ISBN 0375503668)You've got to feel for Bill Gates. It's not so much that he is universally despised, or even that the US government and judiciary seem intent on breaking up his business. It is that Microsoft's days as a synonym for IT are numbered, at least they are if you follow Auletta's devastating account of the company and its leader.

  • Brief encounter: Manches, oxford

    22-Jan-2001

    Manches' Oxford office is thriving. Its primary service to specialist clients in the biotechnology and technology sectors seems to be paying off. But whether the firm can achieve sustained growth on the back of Oxford's thriving property market and the buoyancy of the technology and biotechnology sectors is another matter.Through expansion, Manches believes that it can. The firm is keen not to dismiss the idea of further consolidation after the merger with ...

  • Brobeck partner leaves for venture capital firm

    22-Jan-2001

    San Francisco giant Brobeck Phleger & Harrison is losing one of its top Silicon Valley rainmakers to a venture capital firm.

  • Capital & Regional

    22-Jan-2001

    Both Fladgate Fielder, which acted on the property aspects of this deal, and corporate adviser DJ Freeman have longstanding relationships with Capital & Regional (C&R). At Fladgates, the C&R relationship has been developed by property partner Eammon Cannon. Other recent Fladgates deals C&R include its joint venture to develop the integrated retail and leisure scheme Xscape in Milton Keynes at a total as-built ...

  • CC Pünder partner quits to join A&O

    22-Jan-2001

    Allen & Overy's Frankfurt office has poached a corporate partner from rival firm Clifford Chance Pünder.

  • CC thrashes out future management

    22-Jan-2001

    Clifford Chance's board is locked in discussions to decide which partners will become the next generation of management.The board spent last Friday (19 January) in a late-night meeting in Hong Kong. One of the topics addressed was the management succession.The issue is the subject of much speculation within the firm. One insider confirms that succession was on the agenda ...

  • Clark Pips Pescod to the Post for Senior Partner Role

    23-Jan-2001

    Senior corporate partner Clark is taking over the position from Giles Henderson who will step down after eight years in the post. Clark was pitched against senior corporate partner Michael Pescod for the senior partner role which was announced to partners this morning after the ballot process was completed yesterday (22 January). Henderson, who has been with the firm for 33 years, will step down from the position on 30 April for Clark to take over ...

  • Client file little extra Client file The intelligent choice

    22-Jan-2001

    The Demands on law firms and in-house legal departments are such that it is imperative that intelligent document systems are embraced and applied in a business-focused way.Intelligent document software essentially comprises a document assembly system which enables questions to be raised by particular fee-earners or paralegals. This enables all documentation to be generated intelligently. The software provides a framework into which documents and relevant questions can be ...

  • CMS teams unite on Ision sale

    22-Jan-2001

    CMS Cameron McKenna and its German member firm CMS Hasche Sigle Eschenlohr Peltzer Schäfer are acting on the sale of Germany's largest internet company.

  • Corporate

    22-Jan-2001

    Sanitec acquires Caradon's bathroom business from HSBC Private Equity for £83m. Sanitec advised by Allen & Overy (Pervez Akhtar). Financial adviser Enskilda Securities. Caradon Bathrooms represented by Eversheds (Edward Pysden). Financial adviser Ernst & Young Corporate Finance.

  • Corporate

    22-Jan-2001

    Go-Ahead Group buys Midland Airport Service (MAS) (Holding) for £72m. Go-Ahead advised by Dickinson Dees (Simon Watts). Financial advisers Close Brothers and Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein. MAS represented by Ashurst Morris Crisp (Roger Finbow). Financial adviser KPMG Corporate Finance.

  • Corporate

    22-Jan-2001

    Hyder sells consulting business in £20m management buyout. The newco advised by Wragge & Co (Richard Haywood). Financial adviser Arthur Andersen Corporate Finance. Hyder represented by Osborne Clarke (Clive Watts).

  • Corporate

    22-Jan-2001

    Taylor Woodrow attempts £537m takeover of Bryant Group, currently in merger talks with Beazer. Taylor Woodrow advised by Norton Rose (Barbara Stephenson). Financial adviser ABN Amro Corporate Finance. HSBC acted as lender. Bryant advised by Linklaters & Alliance.

  • Corporate

    22-Jan-2001

    Spring Group disposes of Spring Education and Spring Skills to Protocol Associates, backed by Bridgepoint Capital, for a cash consideration of £71.9m. Spring Group represented by Gouldens (Hilary Winter). Protocol advised by Linklaters & Alliance and Fenners.

  • Corporate

    22-Jan-2001

    Barclays Private Equity completes management buy-in of Warner Howard for £57m. Barclays Private Equity advised by Addleshaw Booth & Co (Darryl Cooke, Tim Bee and Alison Hunt). Financial advisers PricewaterhouseCoopers London, KPMG Birmingham and Burlington. Vendor represented by Pinsent Curtis. Financial adviser New World Corporate Finance.

  • EURO CORPORATE DEALS by volume

    22-Jan-2001

    No.IndividualBidder/target advisersValue of deals (£bn)No of deals1.Adrian ClarkAshurst Morris Crisp6.4172.Simon TinklerClifford ...

  • Fair game?

    22-Jan-2001

    News of the National Lottery Commission's shock decision to exclude Camelot from further negotiations reached David Pannick QC of Blackstone Chambers when his mobile phone rang on a beach in Cannes on 23 August last year. The thrust of the argument that would dramatically overturn the commission's decision was formed there and then as Pannick spoke to Camelot's advisers at Baker & ...

  • Finance

    22-Jan-2001

    Barclays Bank provides £6m financing for the new multistorey car park at the London International Exhibition Centre. Barclays Bank represented by Berwin Leighton (Simon Kildahl). Security trustee represented by Allen & Overy. Car park operator Excel Parking advised by Glovers.

  • Finance

    22-Jan-2001

    Merrill Lynch International and Barclays Bank act as underwriters of debt to a newly-created vehicle to fund acquisition of businesses from ICI. Subordinated debt providers Merrill Lynch and Barclays represented by Ashurst Morris Crisp (Stephen Short). Acquirers and borrower group advised by Freshfields.

  • Finance

    22-Jan-2001

    London & Regional Properties receives £21m syndicated facility from BHF-Bank for the acquisition and development of property in Camden for a retail and leisure scheme with connected residential and office space. London & Regional Properties advised by Berwin Leighton (Andrew Eastwood). BHF-Bank represented by Taylor Joynson Garrett.

  • Finance

    22-Jan-2001

    Steering committee of bank creditors of the Guangdong Enterprises and the Nam Yue group complete restructuring of $4.4bn (£3bn) of groups' debt. Steering committee of 14 banks led by Standard Chartered Bank as liaison bank

  • FORUM

    22-Jan-2001

    Two recent arbitrations have sparked discussion in public international law circles: Metalclad v Mexico and SD Myers Inc v Canada both addressed the definition of expropriation in public international law under the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta), although in Myers, the tribunal concluded there was no expropriation.Under international law, expropriation is the taking of property by a government or governmental-type authority, not limited to ...

  • Freshfields moves aside as BNFL creates panel

    22-Jan-2001

    Freshfields Bruckhaus Der-inger has lost its position as sole legal adviser to British Nuclear Fuels (BNFL) following the company's decision to appoint its first ever panel.Freshfields has been BNFL's main law firm since 1971, but Hammond Suddards Edge, Eversheds and DLA are now advising the company on a number of areas housed under corporate and commercial and dispute resolution. ...

  • Fried Frank takes on Covingtons chair to head antitrust practice

    22-Jan-2001

    New York firm Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson is taking on the chair of Covington & Burling's antitrust practice for its Washington DC office.

  • Gaymer tipped as new Simmons senior partner

    22-Jan-2001

    Simmons & Simmons head of employment Janet Gaymer has been put forward as the potential successor to Bill Knight as the firm's next senior partner.If she wins an election, which is planned for the spring, she could become the only female senior partner at a top 20 City firm.The choice of Gaymer, one of the firm's pre-eminent client winners who was key in bringing in numerous lucrative clients, would break with the Simmons tradition of choosing a corporate ...

  • GUANGDONG Enterprises

    22-Jan-2001

    This is the largest restructuring to emerge from the People's Republic of China's economic crisis, signaling the continuing strength of Allen & Overy's (A&O) Asian practice. The Guangdong Enterprises deal is announced just a week after the firm completed what is believed to be the largest restructuring for an Indonesian debtor since the country's economic crisis in 1997, where A&O advised the steering ...

  • Hammonds wins work for Land Rover pensions

    22-Jan-2001

    Hammond Suddards Edge's Birmingham office has won out against Eversheds to act as legal adviser to the trustees of the Land Rover pension fund.A team at Hammonds, led by the head of the Birmingham pensions unit Ian Forrest and aided by Georgina Rankin and Philip Sutton, will be responsible for advising the trustees, appointed by both Land Rover employers and employees, on a number of ...

  • HSBC demands global discount from City firms

    22-Jan-2001

    Firms on the panel of HSBC Holdings could scoop a huge influx of international work after being accepted as the client's preferred global advisers.Each firm had to submit a tender to Bennett outlining their discount proposals before they were accepted.The eight firms used by HSBC in London were asked to pitch to the bank before Christmas, and each has won a place on a new global panel.The panel consists of

  • HYDER CONSULTING

    22-Jan-2001

    Following on from last summer's chaotic bid for Hyder, Western Power Distribution (WPD), which won out against Japanese bank Nomura, is offloading a number of the Welsh water and electricity company's assets.

  • IBM hires new general counsel

    22-Jan-2001

    IBM Australia and New Zealand has recruited a new general counsel from Geac Computers.

  • Joseph Tan goes global with three new offices

    22-Jan-2001

    Leading Singapore shipping specialist Joseph Tan Jude Benny Anne Choo is opening three overseas offices.

  • Latham & Watkins to lose top rainmaker to Rothschild Group

    22-Jan-2001

    Latham & Watkins' New York office is losing one of its top rainmakers to investment bank Rothschild North America.

  • Law Society acts on threats by Government

    22-Jan-2001

    The Law Society is creating a compliance board to oversee its complaints procedure in response to threats from the Government to set up an independent supervisory body.Up to half of the board will be lay members appointed by the Master of the Rolls. The board will work on regulatory issues, including any problems with the Office for the Supervision of Solicitors, which is currently trying to hasten its procedures to meet the Lord Chancellor's Department's (LCD) ...

  • LAWYERS IN THE LOTTERY FIASCO

    22-Jan-2001

    National Lottery Commission: Advised by Treasury solicitors on constitutional matters, while Lawrence Graham advised on commercial issues and took responsibility for assessing the two bids.After losing the High Court case over its treatment of Camelot's bid to retain control of the Lottery, the commission dumped its former Treasury solicitor advisers in favour of

  • LeBoeuf breaks into South Africa with energy practice

    22-Jan-2001

    New York firm LeBoeuf Lamb Greene & Macrae is opening an office in Johannesburg to focus on energy and project finance work.

  • Let's fit together

    22-Jan-2001

    News of the Pinsent Curtis-Biddle merger was a surprise to many in the market. Fiona Callister meets Julian Tonks and Martin Lane and asks, is it a marriage of two equals?

  • Linklaters wins top spot in M&A table

    22-Jan-2001

    UK and US firms witnessed a bumper year for M&A in 2000, despite a 20 per cent fall in deal activity and a marketplace increasingly dominated by regulators.

  • Lovells reiterates commitment to Hong Kong with new managing partner

    22-Jan-2001

    Allan Leung is taking over the post from Roddy McKean who, after heading up the post for over three years, has relocated to London to act on a corporate deal. Leung, a commercial litigation and dispute resolution partner, has practiced at Lovells for 11 years. Commenting on the sigificance of being the firm's first Chinese managing partner, he says: "With Hong Kong now being part of China and China's accession to the World Trade Organisation ...

  • Mayer Brown's asset finance team on the move again

    22-Jan-2001

    Weiss joined the US firms only two years ago from construction specialist Masons, where he co-founded the project and asset finance group. He brings with him Dominic Spacie, who joins as a partner, and Francis Sergejew. But it is understood Steven Janes, who quit for Mayer Brown & Platt alongside fellow co-founder Weiss, is not leaving. Denton Wilde ...

  • Mayhew hire sparks FSA overhaul

    22-Jan-2001

    The Financial Services Authority's (FSA) legal provision is to be overhauled following the appointment of Clifford Chance partner David Mayhew as leading advocate.Long-serving litigation partner Mayhew, who is also a solicitor advocate, will join the FSA in May.He is one of three senior counsel who will head the FSA's internal legal provision. He will be responsible ...

  • MGM lawyer joins SJ Berwin to boost US film studio work

    22-Jan-2001

    SJ Berwin's media and communications group is looking forward to a major growth in US-generated work following the appointment of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's senior vice president of legal.

  • MoFo lands £1.4bn deal for Thomson Multimedia

    22-Jan-2001

    Morrison & Foerster's (MoFo) London office is in the throes of its first major transaction for Thomson Multimedia on its $2.1bn (£1.4bn) acquisition of Technicolor.

  • Nishith Desai launches in Silicon Valley

    22-Jan-2001

    Indian firm Nishith Desai Associates is opening an office in Silicon Valley. It will be the first Indian practice to break into the US high-tech region.

  • Opinion

    22-Jan-2001

    But today, labour issues are no longer just an afterthought and are much more centre stage - witness Rover, where the threatened £40m Tupe (Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 1981) action for non-consultation with the workforce scuppered the Alchemy bid.Add to this the effects of globalisation, with an increasing number of organisations employing a diverse labour force across a multiplicity of jurisdictions with the attendant ...

  • Real Estate and projects

    22-Jan-2001

    Capital & Regional in joint venture with Hermes Property Unit Trust to acquire two sites from Hermes for £35m. Capital & Regional advised by DJ Freeman (Jonathan Martin) and Fladgate Fielder (Eammon Cannon). Hermes Property Unit Trust advised by SJ Berwin (Simon Rose).

  • Real Estate and projects

    22-Jan-2001

    Lancaster Landmark Hotel Company buys the Kensington Hotel for an undisclosed sum. The Kensington Hotel advised by Reed Smith Warner Cranston (Mary Anderson). Lancaster Landmark Hotel Company advised by Norton Rose (David Ashworth). Royal Bank of Scotland, the mortgagees, advised by

  • Real Estate and projects

    22-Jan-2001

    Discovery Properties embarks on joint venture with Bowmer & Kirkland and signs up tenants for new development in £20m deals. Discovery Properties advised by Lawrence Graham (Jon Lloyd and Leona Ahmed). London Borough of Redbridge advised by Dechert (Michael Hallowell).

  • REPORTAGE

    22-Jan-2001

    The rules of public international law have long placed restrictions on the measures that a state can take against the property or person of foreign nationals. One area in which the international rules are well developed is in relation to the protection of foreign investments. International agreements between states establish protections by "internationalising" the applicable rules. They do so either in the form of bilateral investment treaties (Bits) or regional agreements, such as ...

  • SJ Berwin finally opens in Paris

    23-Jan-2001

    Private equity partner George Pinkham and tax lawyer Sylvie Vansteenkiste are highly regarded within the Paris market as a buyout/venture capital and private equity funds teams. S J Berwin already has offices in Brussels, Berlin, Munich, Madrid and Frankfurt. For full story see next week's The Lawyer (29 January)

  • TAYLOR WOODROW

    22-Jan-2001

    Norton Rose, Linklaters & Alliance and Slaughter and May are gearing up for a few weeks of tactical fun as the merger between housebuilders Beazer and Bryant looks set to turn hostile now that Taylor Woodrow has entered the fray.

  • TECHNOLOGY MEDIA & TELECOMS

    22-Jan-2001

    As everyone knows, 2000 was the year when people got very excited and then bored with dotcoms. The bubble grew, then burst, and all those cynics said "I told you so". It's now much more fun counting the dotcom failures than guessing how large a sum they will get upon flotation.But as 2001 gets underway, and the dotcom frenzy fades into memory, the question has to be asked - just what are all those IT lawyers doing now?For ...

  • THE ANORAK

    22-Jan-2001

    The ruling that the killers of James Bulger will have their new lives protected from intrusion from the English and Welsh media was immediately pounced on by net-savvy lawyers who pointed out that the judgment could be rendered farcical if details of Venables' and Thomson's identities appeared online.Not only would such an event have direct implications for the young men but it could render any English paper that republishes, or even links to the information, ...

  • The Firm

    22-Jan-2001

    Tom Henderson and Rodney Bickerthwaite, both bedecked in tuxedos, are discussing disturbing recent events in the City...Henderson: It's effectively vanished. One minute Biddle was on our radar screens. The next minute nothing... thin air.Bickerthwaite: Like when satellites went missing in the Bond film Moonraker?Henderson: That's the analogy we're trying to set up, yes. The only clue to Biddle's whereabouts ...

  • The law of the land

    22-Jan-2001

    Paul Bowden

  • The Leader column

    22-Jan-2001

    Oh, puh-lease. When Pinsent Curtis Biddle press-released its merger last week, it all sounded so plausible. Great fit, bolstering London, big push on private equity, blah blah blah. And then Julian Tonks had to go and spoil it all. "We will be able," he declared, "to compete with the leading firms outside the magic circle."

  • THE NATIONAL LOTTERY

    22-Jan-2001

    1993: Lottery is created by the National Lottery Act and safeguarded by Oflot and the director general.Branson's the People's Lottery loses out when the first seven-year franchise is awarded to Camelot.1994: The National Lottery is launched.1997: Labour's manifesto says it will seek an "efficient, not-for-profit operator"."Fat cat" row blows up over Camelot's huge bonuses to its executives and ...

  • Tite & Lewis takes on second finance partner

    22-Jan-2001

    Tite & Lewis, the law firm associated with accountants Ernst & Young, is taking on a second finance partner, this time from US firm LeBoeuf Lamb Greene & MacRae.Asset finance partner Paul Flood specialises in transport sector deals, particularly in aircraft and rolling stock, which Tite & Lewis says fits well with its client base of airlines.Flood was a partner at Edwards Geldard before joining LeBoeuf in 1996. Before that he was a partner at Wilde Sapte. He ...

  • White & Case hires trio for acquisition finance launch

    22-Jan-2001

    White & Case Feddersen in Frankfurt has taken on three new partners to create an acquisition finance department to work alongside the London practice.