Slaughter and May best friend Nauta Dutilh and Clifford Chance have landed the lead roles on the potential multi-billion pound offer by leading Danish shipping group Möller-Maersk for Royal P&O Nedlloyd.

Maersk, advised by Clifford Chance, is expected to offer 2.3bn euros in cash for P&O Nedlloyd, the world’s third world’s third largest container shipping business, which has instructed Nauta Dutilh.

The Nauta Dutilh team, which is being led by partner Erik Hammerstein is being supported by Linklaters.

It is understood that Linklaters, which severed ties with former Dutch alliance De Brauw Westbroek, was brought in because the magic circle firm teamed up with Nauta Dutilh to advise P&O Nedlloyd on its restructuring a year ago.

The Clifford Chance team is being led by Amsterdam-based partners Jeroen Koster and Hector de Beaufort in Amsterdam with support from Neil Harvey in London.

Meanwhile, Freshfield Bruckhaus Deringer is advising P&O, the largest shareholder in P&O Nedlloyd.

According to the preliminary joint announcement by Maersk and P&O Nedlloyd the offer memorandum will be published as early as next month.