Allen & Overy appoints new head of corporate

Allen & Overy has selected Richard Cranfield to head up its corporate department when Guy Beringer moves up to become the firm's senior partner. Cranfield joined A&O as a trainee in 1980 and was made up to partner in 1985. He was recently elected to the firm's Partnership Board. He takes up his new position from 1 January 2000. He has advised on several high profile mergers and acquisitions and privatisations – such as acting for the DTI on the sale of British Energy – and regularly acts in equity issues. Major corporate and capital markets transactions are also part of his speciality.

His recent deals include acting for Cable and Wireless on its £6.5 billion acquisition of the data business of Cable & Wireless Communications and the simultaneous £8.2 billion acquisition by NTL of Cable & Wireless Communications' consumer business.

He also acted for British Eurospace on the issue of £685 million 3.75 per cent Exchangeable Bonds, exchangeable into ordinary shares of Orange plc (the largest exchangeable security issued by a UK company).

He says the corporate department – the biggest department in the firm – plays a central role in Allen & Overy's ambitions to become a global law firm.

He says: “We have taken significant steps in Europe in recent years through mergers in Italy, Spain and, most recently, the Netherlands and Luxembourg, while deepening our capabilities in France and Germany with a number of lateral hires and sustained, organic growth.

“We will continue to develop this pan-European service, together with that in Asia, and will also look to grow our US corporate capability significantly.”