Six leading firms advising on Gucci power struggle

At least six top Dutch and US law firms are advising in the battle to control Italian fashion house Gucci.

Gucci's main lawyers are London-based partner Scott Simpson of US firm Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom and Peter Wakkie, corporate lawyer at De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek – the Dutch member of Linklaters & Alliance.

Dutch-listed company Gucci is also instructing Gibson Dunn & Crutcher of Los Angeles. US firm Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton began advising Gucci but was conflicted out because of its continuing relationship with LVMH, say sources.

LVMH, the French luxury goods outfit bidding for full control of Gucci, is instructing US firm Davis Polk & Wardwell and two Dutch firms – Nauta Dutilh, led by Paul Storm, and Stibbe Simont Monahan Duhot, led by Josephus Jitta.

LVMH, owner of the Givenchy and Christian Dior brands, has amassed a 34.4 per cent equity stake in Gucci during its three-month battle for control.

LVMH's long-standing rival, luxury goods distributor Pinault-Printemps Redoute (PPR), which agreed with Gucci to buy a 40 per cent equity stake, is advised by Loeff Claeys Verbeke.

The battle has entered a legal phase with LVMH's challenge to Gucci's 'poison pill' defence in the Dutch appeal court last week.

The court ordered Gucci's main board directors to formally consider LVMH's u50 per share offer. But it refused to strike out Gucci's deal with PPR.

PPR's strategic investment has been filed with the Amsterdam and New York stock exchanges and the US Securities and Exchange Commission.