ALL-STAR CAST: top players in French firms

Thierry Vassogne

Age: 49

Firm: Linklaters & Alliance

Focus: M&A and stock exchange

Number of partners: 25

Deals: Advised Tetra Laval on its euro1.7bn (£1.05bn) tender offer for Sidel (March 2001).

Advised France Telecom on its euro10bn (£6bn) purchase of 54.3 per cent of Equant (November 2000).

Advised Peugeot and Faurecia on the euro1.480m (£900,000) acquisition of SIT (October 2000).

Advised Ernst & Young France on Ernst & Young's disposal of its consulting business to Cap Gemini (March 2000).

Jean-François Prat

Age: 59

Firm: Bredin Prat

Focus: M&A, stock exchange and a small amount of initial public offering (IPO) work

Number of partners: 20

Deals: Advised Vivendi in its merger with Seagram (July 2000).

Advised BNP in its $19.9bn (£13.8bn) merger clash with Société Générale and Paribas (December 1999).

Advised Elf Aquitaine in its $59bn (£41bn) hostile merger with TotalFina (September 1999).

Advised Rhone-Poulenc in its $28.5bn (£19bn) merger with Hoechst to form Aventis (December 1999).

Jean-Pierre Martel

Age: 57

Firm: Rambaud Martel

Focus: M&A and stock exchange

Number of partners: 28

Advised Paribas in connection with rival public exchange offers from Société Générale and BNP.

Advised finance company Richemont on its acquisition of Van Cleef & Arpels.

Advised BNP Paribas in connection with its public tender offer on Cobepa.

Advised HSBC-CCF in its partnership with Credit Lyonnais for financial lease and personal property leasing businesses.

Advised BNP Paribas with the IPO of EADS.

Advised Richemont on the contribution of its 15 per cent stake in Canal+ and Vivendi.

Jean-Michel Darrois

Age: 52

Firm: Darrois

Focus: M&A, stock exchange and a small amount of IPO work

Number of partners: 10

Advised Schneider Electric on its $7bn (£4.9bn) bid for Legrand (Paris Appeal Court's decision on validity of bid expected on 3 May 2001).

Advised Société Générale on its $19.9bn (£13.8bn) merger clash with BNP and Paribas (December 1999).

Advised TotalFina on its $59bn (£41bn) hostile merger with Elf Aquitaine (September 1999).

Didier Martin

Age: 48

Firm: Bredin Prat

Focus: M&A, stock exchange and a small amount of IPO work

Deals: Advised Legrand when it was acquired by Schneider for $7.05bn (£4.9bn) (Paris Appeal Court's decision on validity of bid expected on 3 May 2001).

Advised Pechiney on its unsuccessful merger with Alcan and Algroup, which was blocked by the European Commission.

Advised Aerospatiale Matra in its merger with DaimlerChrysler Aerospace to form EADS (1999).

Advised Promodes which merged with Carrefour in a deal worth £1bn (1999).

Dominique Bompoint

Age: 35

Firm: Clifford Chance

Focus: M&A and stock exchange

Number of partners in Paris: 48

Deals: Advised Rhone-Poulenc on its merger with Hoechst.

Advised Vivendi on its acquisitions of Havas and Pathe.

Advised Paribas on its acquisition of Ciments Français.

Advised BNP on merger clash with Société Générale and Paribas.

Sébastien Prat

Age: 35

Firm: Bredin Prat

Focus: M&A and stock exchange

Deals: Advised Seat on its acquisition of Consodata (2000/2001).

Advised the French government in the combination of EADS (2000).

Advised Crédit Mutuel in the privatisation of the CIC through its acquisition by Crédit Mutuel (1999/2000).

Advised the French government on the privatisation of Aerospatiale through its merger with Matra (1999).

Advised the shareholders of Lloyd Continental by Société Suisse (1999/2000).

Henri Brandford Griffith

Age: 40

Firm: Veil Armfelt Jourde La Garanderie

Focus: Stock exchange

Number of partners: 15

Deals: Advised TotalFina on its $59bn (£41bn) tender bid for Elf Aquitaine (September 1999).

Advised BNP on its $19.9bn (£13.8bn) merger clash with Société Générale and Paribas (December 1999).

Advised TotalFinaElf on its complementary offer on Fina (2000).

Advised Allianz on its successful FFr60bn (£5.7bn) offer for AGF.

Acted for Renault during its privatisation.

Acted for AXA during the Credit Lyonnais privatisation.

Pierre Yves Chabert

Age: 39

Firm: Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton

Focus: M&A and stock exchange

Number of partners in Paris: 19

Deals: Advised Equant on the acquisition of Global One and when it was bought by France Telecom (2000/ 2001).

Advised Direkt Anlage Banke in its tender offer on Self Trade (2000/2001).

Advised Elf Aquitaine in connection with its defence against the tender launched by TotalFina.

Advised Banque Nationale de Paris and Goldman Sachs in connection with BNP's public exchange offer for Société Générale and Paribas.

Counsel to managers in connection with IPO of internet service provider Wanadoo (July 2000).

Advised Sanofi on its merger with Synthelabo to create Sanof-Synthelabo (1999).

Laurent Faugérolas

Age: 43

Firm: Willkie Farr & Gallagher

Focus: Mainly IPOs but some stock exchange and M&A work

Number of partners in Paris: 10

Deals: Advised TotalFina for its exchange tender offer on Elf Aquitaine's capital $54bn (£37.6bn) (1999).

Advised TotalFinaElf on its buyout tender offer on the remaining 5 per cent of Elf Aquitaine's capital for FFr18bn (£1.7bn) (2000).

Advised Total on its acquisition of a controlling interest in PetroFina and exchange tender offer on remaining Fina share for $12.9bn (£9bn) (1999).

Advised Renault on the purchase of 36.8 per cent of the share capital of Nissan for ¥585.7m (£3.35m) (1999).

Advised Morgan Stanley in connection with the issuance by Alcatel of tracking stocks relating to its Optronics division for euro1.4bn (£80m) (2000).