31 July 2000

The Lawyer

  • A View from South Africa

    31-Jul-2000

    South Africa is perhaps feeling the effects of globalisation more than any other economy worldwide. Due to both its geographical location and its political past it has traditionally been "out of the loop". The emergence of e-commerce, however, coupled with the abolition of sanctions - both of which have taken place within the past five or six years - have catapulted South African lawyers into a new and different dimension. Public interest law, which preoccupied so many of the top legal ...

  • Arnold & Porter boosts IT team with niche firm

    31-Jul-2000

    Washington DC firm Arnold & Porter is bulking up its Los Angeles-based intellectual property and technology practice by adding another team of lawyers.

  • Berwin

    31-Jul-2000

    Berwin Leighton advised Shore Capital on its recommended all share bid for internet investment vehicle JellyWorks, valuing the merged group at £260m. JellyWorks' shareholders will receive a 25 per cent stake in the enlarged group, while Shore Capital will apply to join AIM. Corporate partner John Bennett led a team of three on the deal while Denton Wilde Sapte acted for JellyWorks.

  • Berwin Leighton launches web-based joint venture with Deloitte & Touche

    31-Jul-2000

    Berwin Leighton has become the latest firm to join the dotcom world by launching a joint venture with accountancy giant Deloitte & Touche - and has already considered the option of floating.

  • Bond Pearce partner leaves to form KLegal competition group

    31-Jul-2000

    KLegal, the associated law firm of accountancy giant KPMG, is taking on a partner from regional firm Bond Pearce to set up a competition practice.

  • BP Amoco matches City firms' salaries

    31-Jul-2000

    BP Amoco's in-house legal department is entering the bidding war for lawyers by reviewing its pay structure to bring it in line with City rates.

  • Case of the week

    31-Jul-2000

    Eleven years after the death of 96 football fans in the Hillsborough disaster, a jury has failed to reach a decision on whether the senior police chief in charge of the crowd was responsible for the tragedy.David Duckenfield, the former South Yorkshire police chief superintendent was charged with manslaughter. Alun Jones QC, prosecuting, failed to make a strong enough case against Duckenfield, represented by William Murray.Following a ...

  • CC penalises equity partners over £200m billings backlog

    31-Jul-2000

    Equity partners at Clifford Chance will miss out on their quarterly profit payments after creating a lock-up lag of 20 weeks, representing app-roximately £200m in unpaid bills.

  • Chadbourne & Parke hires former RBS legal director

    31-Jul-2000

    The London office of New York firm Chadbourne & Parke is taking on a former legal director of the Royal Bank of Scotland as a consultant.

  • Davis Polk man quits for Morgan Stanley

    31-Jul-2000

    Davis Polk & Wardwell is losing one of its London partners to investment banking client Morgan Stanley Dean Witter.

  • Eleven set to quit One Essex Court

    31-Jul-2000

    Eleven civil practitioners are leaving the common law chambers of Sir Ivan Lawrence QC at One Essex Court to join the chambers of Richard King at 5 Paper Buildings, creating a 33-strong set .

  • Fifth London partner quits Cadwalader

    31-Jul-2000

    New York firm Cadwalader Wickersham & Taft is losing its fifth London partner this year, to rival Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy.

  • First-name terms give partners better returns

    31-Jul-2000

    Every law firm is in the "people business" and those who fail to identify that are holding themselves back for the future.Interpersonal relat-ionships are absolutely fundamental.This means that partners and those in authority need to be approach- able and positive, and display the best of human characteristics.This may mean breaking down some of the old barriers such as titles and formal names.Many partners hide behind the ...

  • Flotations

    31-Jul-2000

    Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton's London office acted for Goldman Sachs International and Morgan Stanley Dean Witter on a $1.7bn (£1.1bn) IPO of Turkcell Iletisim Hizmetleri shares. The investment banks acted as joint global co-ordinators and joint bookrunners on the deal. Partner Sebastian Sperber led a team of two on the IPO.

  • Flotations

    31-Jul-2000

    CMS Cameron McKenna represented TranXenoGen on its £60m initial public offering (IPO) on AIM. The IPO included a placing of 6.25m shares at £2 each

  • Flotations

    31-Jul-2000

    Gouldens acted on a £25m management buyout (MBO) of Quantum Publishing from P&O. The firm advised the MBO team and Newco set up to purchase the publishing house, which will trade as Quantum Business Media. Litigation solicitor Michael Nouril led a team of two on the deal. CMS Cameron McKenna represented ABN Amro and Newco in relation to the acquisition from P&O, which was advised by Freshfields.

  • Gainfully employed

    31-Jul-2000

    Previously the domain of the female lawyer, employment law was sneered at by corporate lawyers and ignored by City firms. Mark Brandon reports on the change and highlights the sector's most prominent lawyers and law firmsFraser Younson: moved from Baker & McKenzie to McDermott ...

  • Herbert Smith

    31-Jul-2000

    Herbert Smith represented Marsh & McLennan Companies (M&M) on the sale of both Vincula House and the Bowring Building, Tower Place, London EC3 to Tishman Speyer Properties. The agreement included the leaseback of part of the site on which M&M will base its European corporate headquarters. The company will take a 25-year lease on the 205,000sq ft office building. Property partner Don Rowlands led a team of 11 on the deal while

  • Human rights act and planning law

    31-Jul-2000

    Planning lawyers are ready to enjoy a boom in work when the Human Rights Act comes into force this October.A rush of third party litigation is expected, based on the right to protection of property and the right to a fair trial enshrined in the act. "The feeling among the bar and in the High Court is that the Human Rights Act will give rise to a huge amount of proceedings," says Tim Hellier, a planning partner at Berwin Leighton.Not all will succeed, but it will ...

  • It's been a bad week for....

    31-Jul-2000

    Mohammed Al Fayed, who has lost another Appeal Court hearing in his application for British citizenship and a passport. Three judges, upheld Jack Straw's earlier decision on the grounds that Fayed was not of "good character". Fayed described the verdict as "disproportionate and irrational".The House of Lords. Due to an increase in the number of bills which need attention, the Lords may have to cut their summer holidays ...

  • It's been a good week for.....

    31-Jul-2000

    Convicted drink drivers, who may now be able to challenge their convictions following the discovery that one of the breath test machines used by the police may be inaccurate. The Intoximeter EC/IR, which is used by eight police forces in the UK and all forces in Scotland, gives higher readings than other models, and accounts for roughly 500,000 convictions each year.Corporal punishment enth-usiasts. A group of 40 independent schools have ...

  • Learning from Australia's CFA lessons

    31-Jul-2000

    Mark Simpson considers the implications of the House of Lords' decision on barristers' immunity in Hall v Simons.As in many other countries, the need for better and cheaper access to justice has forced governments in every Australian jurisdiction to look at new ways of funding litigation. The idea of lawyers funding litigation "on spec"- which for so long constituted champerty at common law - suddenly became the perfect solution.

  • Litigator's View

    31-Jul-2000

    Now that the House of Lords has removed advocates' immunity in the case of Hall v Simons, few practitioners are going to worry about why it existed until July 2000. What they will want to know is where they go from here.It is clear that actions will be brought against barristers alleging in-court negligence and that some will succeed. But their Lordships were at pains to stress that they did not believe they were opening the floodgates. There are at least three ...

  • Manches

    31-Jul-2000

    Manches represented Durlacher on establishing a separately funded vehicle to invest in the European applications service providers (ASP) market. The new venture, entitled App-X, has received £10m from private investors, which will eventually hold a 62.5 per cent stake in the vehicle. Durlacher has invested £600,000 in cash and a percentage of its minority stakes in two ASPs including ASP Global, giving it a 37.5 per cent shareholding. Company/commercial partner Christopher Owen acted ...

  • Measuring the judgement

    31-Jul-2000

    As a frequent attendee at court, I am astonished at the inaccuracies that occur when metres are converted to yards, and vice versa, mainly during motoring offence hearings.These inaccuracies would appear to be occurring within a (middle-aged) group who were educated in imperial units rather than metric, but as these mistakes might have an adverse effect on some cases, I suggest that every member of the judiciary be provided with a conversion table.

  • Michael Helmer

    31-Jul-2000

    Former Field Fisher Waterhouse senior assistant Michael Helmer has become the first ever in-house lawyer at Shopsmart.com. He tells Abigail Townsend how he enjoys being part of the team.

  • Mixing the food groups

    31-Jul-2000

    After Unilever's takeover of US food giant Bestfoods, Tom O'Sullivan meets the in-house lawyers who negotiated one of history's biggest UK/US deals in less than four daysNo sooner had Unilever announced that it was killing off 1,200 of its 1,600 brands than it went out and spent £13.3bn on a whole new set of household names.This apparent U-turn is explained by the fact that by acquiring Bestfoods, Unilever is ...

  • News in Brief

    31-Jul-2000

    Winston & Strawn, the Chicago firm, is poised to merge with the New York office of Whitman Breed Abbott & Morgan to boost its City presence to 250 lawyers. The talks, which were revealed in The Lawyer (27 March), have been finalised and Winston & Strawn partners will finish voting today. A merger is due to be announced this week. The Los Angeles office of Whitman Breed is not linking up, but is expected to join another West Coast practice. The merger gives Winston & Strawn one of the five ...

  • Nisse steps down to join Ashursts' property team

    31-Jul-2000

    Ashurst Morris Crisp's managing partner is stepping down to return to the firm's property unit as three lawyers leave the department.

  • Norton Rose takes team for Milan

    31-Jul-2000

    Norton Rose is opening a new office in Milan with the entire civil team from two-partner firm Studio Legale Vassallie.

  • Oppenhoffs set for rejig after merger

    31-Jul-2000

    Oppenhoff & Rädler is undergoing a radical over-haul following its decision to merge with Linklaters.

  • Proskauer Rose hires four real estate partners

    31-Jul-2000

    Proskauer Rose, New York's sixth largest law firm, is taking on four partners to boost its real estate and employment practices.

  • Quote of the week

    31-Jul-2000

    "What am I going to do with it? I really don't know. I really don't know at all."- Gareth Quarry on the quandary of having an extra £31.8m after the sale of recruitment consultancy QD.

  • Rakisons set to merge with Washington firm

    31-Jul-2000

    City firm Rakisons is in the final stages of merger talks with Washington DC firm Steptoe & Johnson.

  • Reuters' in-house team hires employment expert

    31-Jul-2000

    Reuters has recruited an employment specialist for the first time to join its 70-strong global in-house team.Jo-Ann Semple will join as legal counsel from DJ Freeman by the beginning of October.The FTSE 100 company previously used external counsel for employment advice. But it now feels it has to have a full-time specialist in-house if it is to cover employment law effectively and cost-efficiently.Deputy general counsel Andrew Garard says relationships ...

  • Reynolds Porter alters lockstep pay system

    31-Jul-2000

    Reynolds Porter Chamberlain is changing its lockstep to include a modified system for the first time.

  • Rover Group

    31-Jul-2000

    A full three months after BMW sold off its Rover car division to the Phoenix consortium for a nominal fee of £10, Midlands-based Rover is just beginning to draw breath.

  • Rozenberg

    31-Jul-2000

    With the Human Rights Act just a couple of months away, the Government seems torn between celebrating a great constitutional milestone and maintaining that nothing much is going to change. Ministers may be forgiven for playing down the seismic shifts that lie ahead: if government departments are torn apart by human rights claims in the coming months, Jack Straw and Derry Irvine may find they have few friends left around the Cabinet table.The Home Secretary takes ...

  • Scuffle of the week

    31-Jul-2000

    Channel Islands v European Union. A proposal by the European Union to create a system to exchange information between tax collectors and bankers has been angrily refused by the governing parties of the islands of Jersey and Guernsey.The islands, regarded as a tax haven for the rich, have vowed to resist any efforts made by the UK or the rest of the EU to make them take part in the scheme. Frank Walker, Jersey's chief finance minister, told the Financial ...

  • Simpson Thacher hires two partners from Shearmans

    31-Jul-2000

    Shearman & Sterling's Silicon Valley expansion plans have suffered a setback with two of the firm's top partners leaving for Simpson Thacher & Bartlett.

  • Skadden Arps in Tokyo hires rival partners

    31-Jul-2000

    US firm Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom is taking on two partners from rivals to boost its Tokyo practice.

  • Slaughters set to introduce new benefits packages for all staff

    31-Jul-2000

    Slaughter and May is scrutinising its benefit packages as it widens its pension scheme to all staff to ensure that it remains competitive.

  • Studio Legale Sutti recruits counsellors

    31-Jul-2000

    Studio Legale Sutti has recruited two leading academics as counsellors to its Milan office as part of a national and international expansion strategy.

  • The 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene and Joost Elfers, published by Profile Books ISBN1861974884

    31-Jul-2000

    In-house lawyers have perhaps the most political jobs in modern business. Nestled at the heart of the company, they are often closest to the power centre. Because of this, much of their time is spent trying to reconcile the art of the impossible with the science of the improbable, while working for the generally incapable.A good guide to the muddy waters of modern management is, therefore, greatly needed. The 48 Laws of Power is more a self-help ...

  • The best laid plans

    31-Jul-2000

    Greater political interference and the emergence of a clear North/South divide in government planning policy is causing major headaches for lawyers and their clients. Julia Cahill reports.If Bill Gates decided to relocate Microsoft to London and had his heart set on building new headquarters on Ludgate Hill, SJ Berwin partner Patricia Thomas suggests that the City might consider ...

  • The clients' commentary

    31-Jul-2000

    A forthcoming book reveals that despite generally positive feedback from consumers about employment law practitioners, many City and national firms have left clients with a feeling of dissatisfaction. Mark Brandon reportsA number of stark lessons for employment practices came out of the client research undertaken for the Insider's Guide to Legal Services: Employment, not least that practices carried away by their own marketing, over-trading or complacency ...

  • The Firm

    31-Jul-2000

    Henderson: You know, I've been thinking about The Firm's image. To an outsider, we must come across as absurd caricatures, so for once I've decided we should do things properly, act with a bit of class. For example, this ABA conference. We should show our US cousins the rich history of The Firm.Pratchard: Hence The British Library?Henderson: Young Pinochet, you're quicker than Jack Straw with a tailwind. I mean, ...

  • The Football League hires new legal head

    31-Jul-2000

    The Football League has announced that a former head of legal at Airtours is to become its new chief executive.

  • The Insider

    31-Jul-2000

    City firms seem to be very pleased with themselves at the moment. Far from behaving like 19th century slave owners by whipping a few more chargeable hours out of their subservient associates, partners are now literally showering their lowly assistants with extra ducats.But while decision makers in private practice are busy splashing around in the milk of human kindness, it is the in-house lawyers who are being forced to pick up the tab for these hefty increases. ...

  • The policy for bar mergers

    31-Jul-2000

    I refer to the 17 July article on page three about the Bar Council's "Barmark" mergers policy. I am writing to clarify our policy:1. If chambers are proposing to merge, this should be made clear in their business plan and to BSI on the validation visit. Provisions should be made as to how the chambers will accommodate the extra numbers in terms of practice management and what changes they envisage will be necessary.2. If chambers merge soon ...

  • The richest man in the law

    31-Jul-2000

    He's a happy bunny, is Gareth Quarry. And why not? He is, after all, the richest man in the law. Last week, he sold the QD recruitment businesses to global recruitment company TMP Worldwide. According to a copy of the offer document seen by The Lawyer, TMP paid some £45.4m for QD, having valued the 900,000-odd shares in the company at £50.47 each. Quarry himself controls 70 per cent of the equity, which has netted him a total of £31.8m.It is a neat irony ...

  • There's more to law than web success

    31-Jul-2000

    Stuart Clark believes that UK practitioners should be keeping an eye on Australia's CFA experience.In the past two weeks you could have been forgiven for thinking that the legal world is starting to become a fully fledged business.The news that Gareth Quarry, chief executive of QD, has made £31.8m by reversing his business into TMP Worldwide, has been the talk of the market since The Lawyer broke the story last Monday. Indeed, ...

  • Thomson Travel forms central legal function

    31-Jul-2000

    Thomson Travel Group (TTG) is undergoing a radical review of its external firms as the company forms its first ever central legal function.

  • Three leave 4 Paper Buildings for Littleton

    31-Jul-2000

    Three tenants are leaving 4 Paper Buildings to join leading employment set Littleton Chambers to consolidate their commercial and employment practices.

  • Weil Gotshal plans alliance with Arthur Andersen Singapore firm

    31-Jul-2000

    us firm Weil Gotshal & Manges is entering into a strategic alliance with Arthur Andersen's Singapore firm Rajah & Tann.

  • Will the king be usurped?

    31-Jul-2000

    11 King's Bench Walk has held the top spot at the employment bar for some time, but now high level moves are making gaps in its framework, leaving space for others to push their way up. Mark Brandon reportsJohn Hendy QC of Old Square Chambers: the set is tipped to knock 11 King's Bench Walk off the top spotAn interesting shift is going on at the employment bar. Until recently, 11 King's Bench Walk (Eldred Tabachnik QC & James Goudie ...

  • WOMEN IN EMPLOYMENT

    31-Jul-2000

    As in many other disciplines, employment law assistants are divided quite evenly along gender lines, but the sector has more than its fair share of female partners - probably more than any other part of the law. Indeed, the heads of four top London practices are women.Some women lawyers admit that their prominence comes partly from the old view that employment is a "soft" discipline, where interpersonal skills (where women are deemed better performers than their male colleagues), ...

  • Wrigleys merges with Malcolm Lynch

    31-Jul-2000

    Leading private client firm Wrigleys has propelled itself up the league tables by merging with niche charity specialist Malcolm Lynch.