Dentons has retained its title as the most-popular litigation adviser to FTSE 100 companies, new data gathered for The Lawyer’s FTSE 100 report in association with Consilio shows.
The league tables measure firm activity by number of cases in the 12 month period between October 2016 and September 2017. The findings show that Dentons worked on 10 cases for a total of five companies in this time.
Herbert Smith Freehills (HSF) ranked second. The firm appeared in eight cases for seven FTSE 100 clients. This compares to its ranking of eighth in last year’s report.
Dentons’ position at the top of the latest table is largely due to its relationship with RBS. It scooped the mandate for some of the bank’s biggest disputes, including a Libor-rigging dispute brought by the Property Alliance Group (PAG).
The £30m claim, the first major Libor-rigging dispute to go all the way to trial, resulted in a win for RBS. However, in June 2017 Lord Justice Patterson granted permission for PAG to appeal the decision, on the grounds that it could be a test case for other claims of Libor manipulation. The appeal will be heard in 2018.
Libor was also at the heart of the £400m claim brought by property tycoon Stuart Barrie Wall against RBS. The claim was filed in August 2014; it was due to go to trial in October 2017 but settled at the end of August. A total of five interim judgments were handed down in the last year dealing with a number of procedural issues.
The case was also the largest in terms of Dentons’ partner manpower with three partners involved: Felicity Ewing, Kerry Talbot and Thomas Leyland. Richard Caird acted on the PAG case.
In addition to RBS, Dentons also acted on three cases for Barclays. This included advising the bank, led by partner Clare Stothard on the successful defence of an interest rate misselling claim brought by Elite Property Holdings.
In other cases, construction partner Akin Akinbode acted for Persimmon Homes and Taylor Wimpey on their unsuccessful claim and appeal against engineers Arup seeking liability for “unexpected” quantities of asbestos found on a site. Meanwhile, Bryan Johnston represented Sainsbury’s and Sainsbury’s Bank in a largely unsuccessful claim over the tax treatment of ATMs in the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber).
Addleshaw Goddard and DLA Piper ranked joint-third, having both acted for FTSE 100 companies in five cases. A total of 12 firms worked on two cases. These include CMS, Clyde & Co, Eversheds Sutherland, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Hogan Lovells.
This report, now available, is the definitive guide to in-house teams at the FTSE 100 and the law firms serving them. It details which law firms are working with each of the 100 companies and on which types of matters. It also includes key metrics on in-house teams and best practice case studies. It is a must-read for FTSE 100 in-house teams and any firm that works, or hopes to work, with this group of companies.