Herbies and Simmons storm on to ABN Amro panel

Herbert Smith and Simmons & Simmons have been selected as external advisers to ABN Amro as the Dutch investment bank nears completion of its long-awaited panel review.

The Lawyer can reveal Herbert Smith was appointed to four of ABN Amro’s nine specialist panels, after it was invited to pitch for the first time. It has been appointed to the bank’s litigation and regulation panel as well as three key debt panels.

It is a major coup for the firm, which successfully advised the investment bank for the first time last year on two large financing deals, including Tullow Oil and Saudi Oger.

Simmons & Simmons has also been sent a letter by ABN Amro, however a spokesperson for the firm said it had not received confirmation of its panel appointment yet.

ABN Amro global head of legal John Collins, who has spearheaded the review, has written to a number of firms regarding panel selection but insisted the new panel would not be completed until the end of the month.

He told The Lawyer the investment bank would appoint 15 to 20 firms to its panels.

“Letters have gone out to various firms including Herbert Smith and Simmons & Simmons,” he said. “It has been delayed but we expect the process to be completed by the end of the month.”

The new panel arrangement will include nine separate panels for M&A and corporate, employment, litigation and regulation, debt and capital markets, structured finance, IT outsourcing, loans and trade, project finance and structured derivatives.

The global panel comprising Allen & Overy, Clifford Chance, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Linklaters has not been affected by the review.