Ashurst, Hammonds and Linklaters do battle on £1bn Enodis deal

Ashurst, Hammonds and Linklaters have lined up to fight the £1bn takeover battle for kitchen equipment maker Enodis.

The London-listed company, advised by Ashurst and corporate partners Richard Gubbins and Anthony Clare, has received a £1.03bn cash offer from US-based Illinois Tool Works (ITW).

ITW has turned to Hammonds corporate partners Giles Distin, Jane Haxby, Richard Burns and Simon Gordon to oversee the bid, which is set to be approved by the Enodis board.

Kirkland & Ellis and Ropes & Gray are also providing ITW with advice on US matters while the lending bank, UBS, is being advised Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Latham & Watkins.

The bid follows an earlier offer from equipment giant The Manitowoc Company, represented by Linklaters, valuing Enodis at £955m. The Linklaters team is fronted by Richard Godden and David Holdsworth.

Enodis makes kitchen equipment for clients like McDonald’s and Starbucks and has factories in America, the UK, Europe and Asia. It has previously been advised by Clifford Chance, which was instructed when the company sold the Magnet Group in 2001.

ITW is a longstanding client of Hammonds but this is its largest instruction to date.

Distin, who worked on the Enodis offer, said it was significant that both bidders had been able to finance such large offers adding: “It was notable that both bids, while sizeable, were able to secure finance in difficult market conditions.”