30 October 2006
The US patent courts have been kind to online retailer Amazon over the years, but the company might have a rougher ride as a defendant against IBM.
US firm Dorsey & Whitney has hired Bill Michael, former chair of the white-collar and regulatory defence group at Lindquist & Vennum, as a partner in its trial group.
Tulkinghorn is delighted to feel hip enough to know that 5 Cavendish Square is clearly the new hot spot for lawyer parties, having been invited to two soirees there in the past fortnight.
Allen & Overy (A&O) has lost its Turin office after its final partner in the city Carlo Pavesio left the firm to set up his own boutique.
Life sciences investment group Abingworth has hired a new general counsel, poaching John Heard from Intel Capital. Heard will replace former general counsel Clare Wilkinson, who left to take the top legal job at Omega Fund Management. At Intel Heard specialised in legal advice on capital venture financing deals for start-up technology companies. He will carry out a similar role at Abingworth, but will focus on the life sciences sector.
Ashurst has strengthened its financial institutions group with the appointment of insurance partner Jonathan Drake from Clyde & Co.
Baker & McKenzie has named Coudert Brothers’ former chairman as one third of its tripartite management committee for the New York office and has announed a new office managing partner.
Bird & Bird has raided Gassner Stockmann & Kollegen in Germany, hiring banking and finance partner Bertold Frisch for its Frankfurt operation.
What a fun-filled Halloween! Slaughter and May made 440 associates very happy bunnies by introducing a bonus for the first time. (It's probably about time that the elite City firm realised that, even if it is a privilege to work at the firm, that might not quite be enough.)
Anglo-Scots firm HBJ Gateley Wareing has launched a new Glasgow employment team with a hire from BT.
On 13 October President Bush signed the law that triggered the market value meltdown of several internet gambling operators that derived much of their turnover from US punters (the most prominent being Partygaming, 888 Holdings and Sportingbet). What many people don't know is that President Bush did so in complete disregard of US obligations ...
Clifford Chance, DLA Piper and Lovells have landed key roles on a £817m recommended offer for Matalan. Clifford Chance advised Matalan's independent board of directors on the recommended offer by Missouri Bidco, a company formed at the direction of Matalan chairman John Hargreaves and his family. The magic circle ...
Latham & Watkins has won a hard-fought battle to recruit chief Enron prosecutor Sean Berkowitz into private practice.
The parent group of the New York Stock Exchange has named its new general counsel, taking the former legal head of Citigroup International.
Clyde & Co has appointed Dominic Lee as the first managing partner of its growing Hong Kong and China practice. Lee, a partner at Clyde & Co in Hong Kong since 1997, will oversee the development of the firm's Hong Kong and mainland China offering. He will also focus on supplying the firm with regional banking and asset finance capabilities in order to provide a full service for clients.
When The Lawyer broke the story on 16 October that leading US class action litigation firm Cohen Milstein Hausfeld & Toll was launching in London, there were more than a few raised eyebrows creasing the brows of litigation partners on both sides of the Atlantic.
The Admiralty and Commercial Court Guide will be overhauled following the symposium of judges, solicitors and barristers which took place on Monday (30 October).
Cravath Swaine & Moore and Canadian firms Stikeman Elliott and Ogilvy Renault have scooped lead roles on Royal Dutch Shell’s acquisition of Shell Canada’s minority interests that it didn’t already own for CAD7.7bn (£3.64bn).
Dechert has profited from its merger with Coudert Brothers' Paris office by hiring arbitration star Pierre Mayer as a partner.
The management and executive committees of Dewey Ballantine and Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe have recommended the firms' merger to their respective partnerships.
DLA Piper has hired the European Commission's top trade negotiator at the World Trade Organisation (WTO). Miriam Gonzalez, who will be based in London, joins the firm's EU competition and trade practice office as a senior consultant. She previously served as a senior adviser in the cabinets of EU External Relations Commissioner Benita Ferrero-Waldner and that of former Commissioner Chris Patten. She ...
Liverpool-based firm DWF has bagged a lead role advising Kwik Save on its £30m refinancing and expansion, acting opposite Linklaters, which retains Somerfield as a client despite the loss of its relationship partner.
Denton Wilde Sapte (DWS) will convert to limited-liability partnership (LLP) status on Wednesday (1 November).
A review of the opportunities open to entrants to the bar could result in fewer students on the BVC course, more employed pupils and more funding for those who need it.
Eurojust, the EU body established to help EU prosecutors and crime fighters pursue cross-border investigations, has signed an agreement with the US that could smooth the way for more transatlantic extraditions.
Eversheds picks up UK Akzo Nobel role" /Dutch chemicals giant Akzo Nobel is to unveil its first-ever global panel after slashing the number of firms it uses by more than 90 per cent.
Eversheds is investing £500,000 in a new IT system designed to keep its debt recovery operation ahead of its competitors'.
Finers Stephens Innocent has reintroduced its senior partner role following a major strategy review. Property partner Melvyn Orton has been appointed to the three-year post, in which he will be responsible for determining the firm's strategy and partner appraisals. Orton stood down as the firm's head of property at the end of September. The firm's previous senior partner Peter Jay resigned in 2002.
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer is overhauling the focus of its international arbitration practice in a bid to bolster its London offering, which lags behind Paris's practice.
Will the champagne corks pop today at Freshfields when it's confirmed as the world's most profitable firm? Probably not.
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, which is at the early stages of a radical partner de-equitisation programme in a bid to boost partner remuneration, made more profit than any other firm in the world last year.
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer corporate lawyers Barry O’Brien and Tim Jones have each instructed separate external advisers in the run-up to a tribunal hearing on their roles on Philip Green’s 2004 bid for M&S.
There was much back-slapping after Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Pinsent Masons and Travers Smith won roles on Deutsche Bank's proposed £350m acquisition of independent wealth manager Tilney Investment Management. ...
Fulbright & Jaworski has opened in Beijing, giving the Texan oil and gas specialist its second Asian office.
Spanish giant Garrigues has broken through the €200m barrier this year, reaching a turnover of €223m.
In-house counsel have slammed law firms for a lack of business awareness as companies struggle to avoid disputes.
The German legal regulator has told UK firms that take advantage of the Legal Services Bill that they will be barred from practising in Germany.
Los Angeles-based firm Gibson Dunn & Crutcher has beefed up its London capital markets offering with the hire of Dorothee Fischer-Appelt from Allen & Overy.
A coalition of top legal, business and civil rights groups has failed in its bid to ensure better safeguards on how people can be extradited from the UK.
Only one last-minute change to the Companies Bill was secured by the GC100, the body of FTSE 100 general counsel, and other business interest groups in a meeting with the industry minister ahead of tonight’s (2 November) debate in the House of Lords.
Silver circle firm Ashurst is celebrating a record first six months after preliminary figures showed the firm was up 28 per cent on the previous year.
Allen & Overy has posted an 18 per cent jump in its half year revenue.
The bandwagon is gathering momentum. While international law firms may be scratching their heads over their chances of actually taking advantage of the legal services reforms sweeping the UK (see page 1), other organisations are cheerfully moving on.
Banking giant Halifax has joined the revolution in the legal services market by launching a division designed to offer customers cheap legal advice on everyday matters.
Halliwells has revealed that it is on target to hit a turnover of £42m for the first half of the financial year.
The success of any firm lies in the quality of its people and the service they provide. Firms have been quick to recognise that investing in their people will yield greater rates of return and they increasingly seek new and innovative ways to support and develop their legal staff.
Congestion and other problems in the South East have seen more companies basing their operations in Yorkshire and Humberside as the region becomes a focal point for logistics expertise. Dominic Ward reports
Confidentiality over court documents has been pushed to the fore by the Law Society's recent injunction. Rebecca Axe and Jane Fitzgerald report
The unique combination of patent and competition law issues in the area of standardisation is an increasingly hot topic, with a number of high-profile standards-related spats rumbling on. By Nicola Dagg and Mark Ridgway
Irwin Mitchell has proposed axing its police prosecutions department in Sheffield. In light of the Government's plans for a legal aid overhaul, senior management began talks with staff regarding the issue last week, which are due for completion by the end of the year. Irwin Mitchell is the first major UK firm to respond to the proposed Government changes. However, the firm will continue to offer ...
The London IP practice of Jones Day has won its first big patent case in the High Court since its relaunch in April last year.
Huddling together for warmth, thousands of Joneses are gathering today in Cardiff's Millennium Stadium. Their aim? To break the world record for the biggest get-together of people with the same surname.
Atlanta-headquartered King & Spalding's New York office has suffered four high-profile defections in the last five weeks, with one defector labelling the office "a dead duck" that is overly dependent on Georgia-generated work.
Kirkland & Ellis is on track to launch its first Asian presence in Hong Kong before the end of the year after securing its local operating licence.
Asia is the focus of Latham & Watkins’ recent promotions to the partnership of 26 associates, taking three new partners in total in the Hong Kong and Singapore offices.
Cuatrecasas corporate partner Jose Luis Blanco has resigned, leaving the way open for him to launch Latham & Watkins’ first Spanish office.
The consolidation within the US legal midmarket continued with the announcement that an East Coast-based 400-lawyer firm called Day Pitney would be created out of a merger between Connecticut-headquartered Day Berry & Howard and New Jersey firm Pitney Hardin.
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer’s former head of corporate Barry O’Brien and London corporate chief Tim Jones face a disciplinary hearing over the 2004 bid for Marks & Spencer (M&S) by Philip Green.
Lawrence Graham has outlined plans to grow the revenue of its corporate department by more than 50 per cent over the next two years.
Litigation is the most effective method of solving disputes, if a recent debate organised by the London Solicitors' Litigation Association (LSLA) is anything to go by.
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton’s London office has benefited from the latest round of partner promotions, taking two partners and a counsel from its ranks of associates, its biggest haul in recent years.
Another week, another consultation on Lovells' lockstep.
Lovells’ management is to push forward with further changes to the firm’s partner remuneration structure, as the top ten City firm’s lockstep review enters a third and final phase.
As we reveal today on TheLawyer.com, former corporate head Barry O'Brien and current London corporate head Tim Jones are to face the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal over their role in Philip Green's unsuccessful takeover bid of Marks & Spencer (M&S) two years ago.
London Mayor Ken Livingstone has Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw (MBRM) to thank for successfully appealing a tribunal decision to suspend him for four weeks.
US firm Milberg Weiss Bershad & Shulman, currently under investigation for alleged fraud, has lured a new senior partner from Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson to troubleshoot Milberg through its legal worries.
Mills & Reeve reshuffle prompts changes at top" /Mills & Reeve has overhauled its management team, introducing new managing and senior partners.
Mills & Reeve wants Brummie money" /As reported on page 11, Mills & Reeve managing partner Mark Jeffries has become senior partner and head of Birmingham Guy Hinchley has taken over as managing partner.
Australian firm Minter Ellison has cast aside market pressure to advise online gaming company Betcorp on the £4.8m sale of its operations to Bodog Entertainment.
Norton Rose is busy packing boxes ahead of its move to More London on the South Bank, but it seems not everyone at the firm is convinced about the move. Rumours persist within the firm that the partners' vote may have mattered little, as the bottom line rents were the deciding factor.
Eighty-one MPs have signed an early-day motion condemning Watson Burton's handling of the controversial miners' compensation scheme and have called for the firm to refund compensation money to the miners.
Reverse secondments are one way BEA Systems’ Emea general counsel Nils Breidenstein keeps his in-house team sharp. By Caroline Binham
Paul Hastings Janofsky & Walker is edging closer to launching its first German office, leaning towards Munich rather than Frankfurt.
Allens Arthur Robinson (AAR) is to bolt on the two Vietnam offices of Phillips Fox following their decision to shun a link-up with DLA Piper.
San Francisco-headquartered Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman will open a Shanghai office but will close its Taiwan offering.
San Francisco-based Thelen Reid & Priest and New York's Brown Raysman Millstein Felder & Steiner have confirmed they are to merge, creating a 250-partner, 617-lawyer national firm with an estimated $400m annual turnover.
Pinsent Masons and Stephenson Harwood have capitalised on the development of street lighting as a PFI market, closing a £100m project between Dorset County Council and EDF Energy. Stephensons strengthened its relationship with EDF Energy after advising the company on similar deals for the London Boroughs ...
A host of Eversheds international partners descended on Ireland the other week for the partnership conference. Sequestered in a magnificent hotel in the middle of a golf course, the partners were there to get to know each other better and to get used to working together more.
Jones Day has snatched a spot on the Royal Bank of Scotland's (RBS) UK legal panel in a rare coup for a US firm.
Much has been written about the booming Dublin market in recent years, but the fortunes of firms in Ireland's second city, Cork, are less well known.
With legislation varying across borders, choosing the country to be the seat of an arbitration is key. By Greg Reid and Mark Deem
Shoosmiths has continued its push into the competitive Birmingham market by making three lateral hires from Eversheds, Wragge & Co and DLA Piper.
Simmons & Simmons managing partner Mark Dawkins has finally appointed a new China regional managing partner. Hong Kong head of financial services Paul Li was handed the post, which was left open by the departure of Huen Wong plus four other partners to launch the first local office of Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson. Dawkins said Li'sappointment ...
Slaughter and May will be back in the House of Lords this week as it looks to follow up its landmark tax win for client Deutsche Morgan Grenfell (DMG) with a similar win for Sempra Metals.
Pub operator Whitbread's longstanding counsel Slaughter and May is likely to reap the rewards should speculation that the company will sell off its restaurant chain TGI Friday's to return £350m to shareholders prove true. At the time of print, the group, which also owns Costa Coffee outlets and Premier Travel Inn hotels, confirmed that it had entered talks over the possible sale. If a disposal ...
Slaughter and May has introduced a firmwide discretionary bonus of 15 per cent for all associates and trainees as part of its pay review.
The Solicitors Assistance Scheme is preparing to fight for its survival after 34 years of advising solicitors, legal staff and their relatives on problems as diverse as disciplinary actions and alcohol addiction.
The top UK legal job at music and entertainment company Sony BMG has changed hands after respected long-serving lawyer Alasdair George left to launch his own consultancy.
Amsterdam is the battleground as the top Dutch firms focus on the city. For Stibbe, the added competition is business as usual
Top judges and litigators will meet at the Royal Courts of Justice today (30 October) to discuss ground-breaking proposals for the management of “supercases”.
Thacher Profitt & Wood has re-elected Paul Tvetenstrand as its chairman and managing partner. Tvetenstrand was first elected back in February 2003, succeeding Omer Williams, who had held the position for 12 years. Thacher's main practice areas are structured finance, real estate, banking and shipping. The firm has offices in New York, Washington DC and Mexico City, as well as in Summit, New Jersey, and White Plains, New York State.
It's the biggest talking point in the City this week. The Law Society's decision to pursue Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer lawyers Barry O'Brien and Tim Jones over their role on Philip Green's bid for Marks & Spencer (M&S) has been obsessing corporate lawyers, ever since www.thelawyer.com revealed the news on Monday morning (30 October).
Today (30 October) sees the publication of The Lawyer Global 100 2006, the definitive list of the world's largest law firms based on revenue.
Last week saw the launch of the all-new logo for that merger of equals between Orrick and Dewey Ballantine. You can tell it's a merger of equals by the new design - 'O'.
What was your first-ever job?Outdoor clerk at Herbert Smith's Paris office in my gap year. Great fun and I can still find my way around Paris blindfolded.
Thirty partners retired from the Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer partnership yesterday.
Bravo to Essex Court Chambers for ditching its nasty orange website in favour of a clean, stylish new look. The new site includes a nifty little feature giving the time in London, New York, Paris and Sydney - or at least it would be nifty if it worked.
Clifford Chance, Herbert Smith, Linklaters, Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw, Pinsent Masons, Simmons & Simmons and the Law Society have been recognised ...
Despite a lack of corporate talent, retention rates have dropped with qualifiers having a wider choice of practice area and increasingly seeking an improved work-life balance
Allen & Overy's (A&O), Ashurst's, CMS Cameron McKenna's, Denton Wilde Sapte's (DWS) and Herbert Smith's project practices have all received boosts this month through key London transport infrastructure deals.
The FSA may want to tighten up its act after tribunal ruling costs it £5m-£10m. By Joanne Harris
Trowers & Hamlins has scooped a role on the first privatisation of an Egyptian state-owned bank.
The long-awaited news of a permanent head of legal at the Olympic Delivery Agency (ODA) was revealed by The Lawyer this month (23 October).
Public officialdom has always been a happy hunting ground for US firms, and Los Angeles firm Gibson Dunn & Crutcher has upped the ante, luring two partners in as many weeks from public offices.
The Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) will begin placing advertisements in the press in its search for 25 new High Court judges.
The Lawyer's Web Week is a weekly commentary on legal activity on the web. This includes an overview of the best of the week's blogs. If you want to direct us to useful links, email webweek@ thelawyer. com.
Wedlake Bell has been on a recruitment drive, adding 17 new solicitors in the past two months, as the firm looks to bulk up.
Weightmans has poached regulatory services specialist Chris Green from rival insurance practice Berryman Lace Mawer as part of its continued assault on the Birmingham market. Green joins as lead partner for its regulatory services work in the firm's Birmingham office. His appointment follows on from the recruitment of Bavita Rae, Birmingham-based partner and head of litigation, from the RAC.
Willkie Farr & Gallagher has claimed its first instruction from pharmaceutical giant Sanofi-Aventis, two years after advising shareholder Total on the E57.7bn (£38.6bn) merger that formed the company.
Birmingham-based giant Wragge & Co is on budget at the financial mid-year, managing partner Quentin Poole revealed last week.
The Lawyer's cost per lawyer (CPL) rankings in The UK 100 Annual Report 2006 revealed that, while Yorkshire and Humberside boast among the lowest costs in the UK, revenue per lawyer (RPL) is also low. For example, Brabners Chaffe Street and Hill Dickinson report CPLs of £107,000 and £119,000 respectively, ...