Once again, Weil Gotshal & Manges‘ great relationship with Hicks Muse scoops the firm an integral role on one of the biggest ever private equity deals in Europe. The deal overtakes the United Biscuits deal and Hillsdown in terms of size, both of which Weil Gotshal’s Mike Francies was involved with.`Francies had to convince Apax, which the firm had worked with in the US, that the UK capability was up to scratch, and led a team of 50 lawyers to clinch the deal. Travers Smith, which boasts a long relationship with Apax, advised on some of the management arrangements for the client.`The Weil Gotshal team included banking partner Helen Burton on the debt work, intellectual property and technology partner Barry Fishley, and corporate tax senior assistant Sarah Priestley. US corporate partner in London Akiko Mukimo ran the US side, which revolved around the purchase of the Yellow Book directories business there.`The deal brings to an end a frustrating year for Allen & Overy (A&O) after the firm scooped the work to advise on the float of Yell 12 months ago. It was A&O’s first instruction from BT, which has historically used Linklaters & Alliance as its preferred firm.