Clifford Chance acts in Nokia bid for Symbian

Clifford Chance has won its first major UK mandate from Nokia, as the mobile phone giant moves to take over mobile software company Symbian.

Also lining up on the $410m (£206m) deal are Eversheds, Norton Rose and Slaughter and May.

Clifford Chance corporate partner Joachim Fleury has been instructed as Nokia offers to buy the 52 per cent of UK-based Symbian it does not already own.

The Finnish mobile phone maker has previously used Shearman & Sterling in London and prior to this deal Clifford Chance had only acted for Nokia in Europe.

Fleury said: “We’ve done substantial work for Nokia in other countries and it has been a client for over 20 years. Still, this is a major development.”

The directors of Symbian, which creates operating ­systems ;for ;advanced mobile phones, called on regular corporate adviser Slaughter and May, led by partner Richard de Carle.

Symbian is majority-owned by a consortium of mobile phone companies: Sony Ericsson, represented by Eversheds partner Paul Pugh; Siemens, represented by Norton Rose partner Chris Pearson; and Samsung and Panasonic, which both relied on in-house counsel.

Slaughters also advised Ericsson’s shareholders through a Chinese wall.