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In total, 18 takeover offers for publicly listed companies were made between January and the end of June 2013, with fees on individual deals ranging from £21,000 to £6.85m. Those results are particularly bleak when compared to the end of 2012 – between September and the end of December £50.1m was spent on lawyers for 15 deals alone.
In terms of legal fees, the largest deal of 2013 so far was William Hill and GVC Holding’s takeover of Sportingbet for £485m. For their advice to Sportingbet, firms including Nabarro and Stephenson Harwood pocketed roughly £1.35m in total, while those on the buyers’ side such as Addleshaw Goddard and Ashurst earned £5.5m.
On the same deal, Sportingbet paid about £5.964m in financial advisory and brokers fees, while the buyers dished out over £9.15m to financial institutions including Citi and Investec.
As far as fees go, it seems that lawyers are facing an uphill struggle to bridge the gap with their financial counterparts.