Norton Rose is muscling in on mmO2's informal panel of legal advisers
The firm has been instructed on a corporate finance deal for the demerged fixed and wireless division of BT, which could result in Norton Rose gaining more corporate finance work for the company in the future. mmO2, still a fairly new entity having only floated on the London Stock Exchange last November, has a range of lawyers that it relies on, but no fixed panel as such. Philip Bramwell, head of legal at mmO2, favours relationships built on the individual reputations of lawyers. He currently uses Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer for large-scale corporate work (the firm acted for mmO2 on the demerger), but he also instructs Allen & Overy, KLegal (Adrian Whitehead) for content and application advice, as well as Olswang's Colin Long. mmO2 has four operating businesses based in the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands and Germany. Lovells advises the UK business of mmO2 on City work, while Eversheds' Leeds office advises on litigation, employment and general commercial matters. The new relationship with mmO2 is a coup for Norton Rose. Bramwell commented: "We wish to broaden the range of our outside law firms in order to reflect the type of work we're doing in-house." mmO2 is currently reshuffling its in-house team in order to further expand its international capability. Dean Savage, a New Zealand lawyer based in the mmO2 operating business in Leeds, is relocating to Ireland, and the head of legal for mmO2 in Germany Thorsten Haiser is moving to the UK for a few months at the beginning of June. "We look to use our in-house lawyers in a multijurisdictional way," said Bramwell.