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Clifford Chance has won Sun Capital, the investment vehicle owned by entrepreneur Hugh Osmond, as a client, after Slaughter and May was conflicted out on a recent deal
Clifford Chance represented Sun Capital on its ultimately failed bid for Travelodge and Little Chef, both owned by Compass Group. Osmond formed Punch Taverns in 1997, which was split into the Punch Pub Company and Spirit Group earlier this year, both of which are advised by Slaughters. Osmond said he decided to use Clifford Chance after growing concerned about conflicts between Spirit and Travelodge. Last year, Neil Hyman, who acted for Punch when it bought 3,600 pubs from Allied Domecq in 2000, gave up his role as client partner when he moved to Slaughters' Hong Kong office and was replaced by David Johnson. Osmond said: "There are two reasons the company chose Clifford Chance. Firstly, there was a potential of conflict and also because Neil recommended [Clifford Chance corporate partner] Jonny Myers on a previous deal where there was a conflict." Osmond added that Sun Capital, where he is a partner, still has a good relationship with Slaughters. "Maybe when Neil comes back from Hong Kong or there is another conflict we may very well go back to [Slaughters]," said Osmond.