Shearman nets Anglo American disposal

Shearman & Sterling‘s UK operation has completed its first English law deal for Anglo American following a direct instruction into the firm’s London office.

The firm, led by former Linklaters lateral Peter King, advised the UK-listed mining group on its $545m (£302.2m) disposal of drilling business Boart Longyear to private equity group Advent.

Although Shearman has enjoyed a strong relationship advising Anglo American on US law deals, Linklaters has long been regarded as counsel of choice on English transactions.

It is understood that the instruction on the Boart Longyear disposal flowed from Anglo American’s South African head of legal Peter Arthur. Anglo American also has a significant legal capability in London, which is headed by UK legal head Ben Keisler.

The disposal is the second major Anglo American deal for Shearman’s London office. The firm advised the company on the sale of the Wendt Group of companies to another private equity buyer, 3i. That deal, which completed late last month, was initially mooted as a US law deal and came to the firm through former New York partner George Casey, who relocated to London in 2002.

Lovells partner Marco Compagnoni advised longstanding client Advent on the Boart Longyear acquisition. Philadelphia firm Pepper Hamilton advised Advent on the US aspects of the financing, while UBS, advised by Cahill Gordon & Reindel, provided the bank debt on the deal.