DLA and Freshfields earn £775k in fees from BT acquisition

DLA Piper and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer are set to share an estimated £775,000 in legal fees after winning advisory roles on British Telecommunications’ (BT) acquisition of IT services company Tikit.

Public deal documents filed by the parties state estimated legal fees of £500,000 paid by BT, which was advised by panel firm Freshfields, with DLA Piper client Tikit’s fees coming in at £275,000.

Freshfields London M&A and TMT co-head Ben Spiers acted for the telecoms giant, which paid £64.2m for the company (14 November 2012). He was joined by lead associate Crisa Cox.

DLA Piper international corporate head Charles Severs led for Tikit, which was set up in 1994 and supplies technology solutions and services to law and accountancy firms. Other lawyers on the firm’s team included Birmingham-based corporate partner Charles Cook.

Tikit’s clientele includes more than 90 of the UK’s top 100 law firms.

Parties in UK public M&A deals have been required to declare estimated legal spend since the introduction of the new Takeover Code last year.

Legal fees during the first year of the new rules came to roughly £1.6m per deal, with Glencore International’s merger with Xstrata emerging as the most costly during the period at £24.8m shared between Freshfields, Linklaters and a host of other firms (10 September 2012).

The merger of Scottish oil group Melrose Resources and Irish rival Petroceltic International yielded legal fees worth an estimated £2.36m earlier this year (3 September 2012).

Background to this deal:

BT re-appointed Freshfields to its panel for another twelve months earlier this year alongside other existing members Bird & Bird and CMS Cameron McKenna, with the roster set for another review next year (10 February 2012). Freshfields’ Spiers is a longstanding relationship partner for the telecoms group.

For more on M&A legal fees, see Feature