Firm scores a conversion

London firm Harbottle & Lewis was involved in a ground-breaking deal when it advised Chris Wright, chair of record company Chrysalis, on his acquisition of Queen's Park Rangers Football Club and Wasps, the rugby union club based in Sudbury.

The transaction involved the formation of a new company, Loftus Road plc, to hold shares in QPR and Wasps, the first time a rugby and football club have joined in this way. Loftus Road, north-west London home to QPR, is expected to play host to both clubs this season.

Paul Cairns, Harbottle & Lewis sports expert, said: “We had to handle the first rugby players' contracts since the decision by the Rugby Football Union to permit players to go professional, as well as looking at existing and future sponsorship and broadcasting deals.”

The QPR acquisition involved partner Marian Derham and Alice Rayman. The Wasps deal was handled by partners Colin Howes, Medwyn Jones and Lisa Bennett. Intellectual property issues were tackled by Dinah Nissen and property law was handled by Alan Patten.