Hogan Lovells and SH star in LoveFilm acquisition

Hogan Lovells and Stephenson Harwood took the key mandates on the £200m sale of the remaining shares in LoveFilm to Amazon.

Stephenson Harwood ­corporate partner Liz Field led the team acting for ­longstanding client LoveFilm on the deal. Tax partner Maryanna ­Sharrock, employee incentives partner Jeremy Glover and head of competition Julianne O’Leary also advised.

At Hogan Lovells corporate finance partner Richard Lewis led the team of ­advisers for Amazon.

LoveFilm has turned to Stephenson Harwood for legal advice since 2004, when it was acquired by Arts Alliance Media.

More recently the firm acted on the acquisition of Amazon Europe’s UK and German DVD rental ­business in 2008 – a deal that saw the online retailer take a significant minority take in the UK film ­subscription business.

Prior to the latest transaction, which is expected to reach completion in the first quarter of the year, Amazon owned 42 per cent of LoveFilm.

In the UK Amazon has used a range of firms for corporate advice. These have included CMS Cameron McKenna, Olswang and Osborne Clarke. Herbert Smith has also acted for the retailer on competition issues.

Amazon will now wholly own the business after ­buying the remaining shares from existing shareholders, which include four venture capital firms alongside LoveFilm staff.

Amazon now plans to grow the business alongside other movie-related assets, including the film database website IMDb.