Whichever way you look at it, either by volume or value, Linklaters & Alliance has capitalised on the IPO boom like no other. It was extraordinarily agile in tapping its existing client base – both corporate and financial – and, according to The Lawyer IPO 2000 Survey, comes out on top for both banks and issuers. Acting on Freeserve gave it a headstart in the new economy arena, which became even more pronounced with the high-profile work of e-commerce partner Rupert Pearce (now at Cognition Ventures, which is itself due to float) and his pioneering stance on equity in lieu of fees. But the driving force behind Linklaters' success has been the IPO team, which brought in some £15m last year. Linklaters' IPO practice is probably the most balanced of any major firm's. It has worked on some major new economy issues, including Freeserve, lastminute.com, TeleCity, StepStone, Thus, QXL.com and Kingston Communications. Its key investment bank relationships revolve around Merrill Lynch, Dresdner KB, and in particular HSBC. And, as one might expect, it has also taken advantage of its US-UK capability to provide advice on dual listings from a variety of overseas offices.