Cravath teams with Freshfields to defend Nasdaq bid

New York firm Cravath Swaine & Moore is the latest to join the swathe of legal advisers who have scored instructions on Nasdaq’s bid for the London Stock Exchange (LSE).

Cravath is partnering with Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer to defend the London bourse from Nasdaq’s £2.7bn bid.

Cravath and Freshfields have worked together “on other speculative bids” for the LSE, according to corporate partner David Higgins, who is leading the LSE defense team at the magic circle firm.

“It’s a very happy relationship between the two firms,” Higgins told The Lawyer, “We’ve worked together many times.”

There was no pitching process for the file, and the LSE turned to the same legal advisers that it had instructed when Nasdaq mounted its original bid for the exchange in March this year.

Cravath, under corporate partners Philip Gelston and Sarkis Jebejian, are advising the LSE on any US aspects that arise, while Freshfields is advising on UK and European aspects. Competition partner Deidre Trapp, corporate partner Andrew Hutchings and co-head of financial institutions Graham Nicholson make up the rest of the Freshfields team.

Nasdaq is also being represented by a transatlantic tie-up between Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom, with corporate partners Michael Hatchard and New York-based Eric Friedman, working with Allen & Overy. Corporate partners Alan Paul and Ian Lopez are heading the A&O team.

Nasdaq’s financial adviser, Greenhill, instructed Baker & McKenzie, while Cahill Gordon & Reindel is representing the banks funding Nasdaq’s bid, as first reported on, November 21.