Linklaters rises to top spot in European M&A standing

Linklaters has topped the European M&A league tables for the first half of 2004, trumping magic circle rival Clifford Chance, which ranked number one last year.
Figures released by Mergermarket saw Linklaters notching up 78 deals totalling e99.08bn (£66.24bn).

Mean-while, Clifford Chance, which managed to hold on to the top spot based on deal volume, advised on 92 deals worth a total of e97.53bn (£65.24bn).

Linklaters superseded Herbert Smith, which came top in the first quarter of 2004 following its role as one of the 16 advisers on the Synofi-Aventis deal. The half-year results put Herbert Smith in fifth place behind Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Sullivan & Cromwell, which are ranked third and fourth respectively.

Linklaters managed to regain the lead in the second quarter of 2004 because it advised alongside Allen
& Overy on Kabel Deutschland’s acquisition of Iesy Hessen, Ish und Kabel Baden-Württemberg for e2.7bn (£1.8bn).

However, for UK deals Linklaters has not fared well, ranking ninth place, behind all its magic circle rivals.
Meanwhile Ashurst, which replaced Freshfields on Philip Green’s bid for Marks & Spencer, has been catapulted to the top spot in the UK table based on deal value.

The only US firms making the top 10 in the UK table were Shearman & Sterling and Davis Polk & Wardwell. The former advised on 15 deals totalling e14.3bn (£9.56bn), while the latter worked on seven valued at e11.4bn (£7.62bn).

European M&A results – first half of 2004
Rank Firm Value €bn (£bn) No of deals
1 Linklaters 99.084 (66.236) 78
2 Clifford Chance 97.593 (65.239) 92
3 Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer 91.768 (61.345) 80
4 Sullivan & Cromwell 85.841 (57.383) 17
5 Herbert Smith, Gleiss Lutz, Stibbe 80.989 (54.140) 46
6 Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz 75.388 (50.395) 11
7 Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom 69.382 (46.380) 20
8 Bredin Prat 68.816 (46.002) 12
9 A&L Goodbody 60.221 (40.257) 18
10 Darrois Villey Maillot Brochier 59.899 (40.041) 3
Source: Mergermarket