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Linklaters has scooped the lead instruction from L'Oréal on its potential takeover of The Body Shop International.
Last month, the French cosmetics giant was forced to make an announcement about its interest in The Body Shop by the Takeover Panel, after The Body Shop's shares rose by more than 10 per cent.
Even though it has not yet made an approach to The Body Shop, L'Oréal has instructed Linklaters Paris-based IP partner Denis Monegier Du Sorbier. It is also understood L'Oréal has appointed JPMorgan for the potential bid.
Meanwhile, Baker & McKenzie has strengthened its corporate ties with The Body Shop, acting for the retail giant on the receiving end of L'Oréal's interest.
The Body Shop corporate relationship partner Bernd Ratzke stressed that L'Oréal had not made any approach to the retailer regarding a potential bid.
"We have had a longstanding relationship with The Body Shop, so it makes sense that they have asked their usual advisers to act for them in this case," he said. "Even without a formal approach, or indeed a bid, the Takeover Code imposes detailed compliance requirements on The Body Shop at this stage."
L'Oréal said in a statement: "L'Oréal's management is continually evaluating a wide range of strategic alternatives that may add value to its shareholders, including a possible offer for The Body Shop. Any offer, if made, is likely to be solely in cash."