Slaughters loses demerger client to Baker & McKenzie

The firm has been instructed as Kidde's new global counsel, replacing its principal legal relationship in the UK with Slaughters and with Hale and Dorr in the US.
London-listed Kidde is a fire and safety product manufacturing company that was formed from last year's demerger of the Williams Group. After the demerger of Slaughters' client Williams into Kidde and Chubb, the magic circle firm acted for both entities. Baker & McKenzie has now usurped the Kidde relationship.
Head of corporate, Bernd Ratzke and partner Mark Henrick will co-ordinate the client relationship. Baker & McKenzie has been presented with a fullservice mandate, including corporate, litigation and employment work.
Ratzke said: “They liked our can-do approach. They were emphatic that they weren't going to instruct lawyers who call a spade a manually-lifting earth device.”
Slaughters handled the Williams demerger and continues to act for Chubb. Ratzke added that, post demerger, Kidde had recognised the need for independent counsel. He said that although Kidde is listed in London, the majority of its operations are overseas. He argued that Baker & McKenzie's global coverage was in its favour.