The Lawyer Africa Elite 2014 features an in-depth look at 46 leading independent firms’ strategies in 15 key sub-Saharan jurisdictions, as well as the views of in-house counsel from some of Africa’s largest companies... Read more
This year, The Lawyer’s annual ranking of the largest UK law firms by turnover is available as an interactive, digital benchmarking tool. For the first time this will allow you to manipulate each data set against the metrics of your choice.
Allen & Overy (A&O) missed out on advising Italian bank UniCredito on its €15bn (£9.95bn) merger with Germany's HypoVereinsbank because the global firm was unable to staff the deal with Italian-speaking partners.
Although A&O has established offices in Italy and Germany, Italy's second-largest bank instructed Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer to advise on the largest-ever cross-border merger because the latter firm fielded an Italian-speaking, German-based partner.
One well-placed source said: "A&O would like to have got the deal. Freshfields got it because UniCredito had a prior relationship with a Freshfields partner who speaks Italian."
The move is a blow for A&O, because the firm has been trying to strengthen its relationship with UniCredito ever since it won the Milan-based bank as a new client.
A&O won its first work for UniCredito earlier this year, advising on its acquisition of a stake in Turkey's Yapi ve Kredi Bankasi (The Lawyer 21 March).
London corporate partner Pervez Akhtar, who manages the UniCredito relationship, denied a snub. "This is just a one-off," he said. "We've still got an excellent relationship and expect to handle more work for them in the future."