Latham and Joelson Wilson at wheel on £300m Addison Lee sale

Latham & Watkins, Linklaters and West End firm Joelson Wilson have advised on Carlyle Group’s purchase of London minicab group Addison Lee, a deal reported to be worth £300m.

Philippe Hails-Smith
Philippe Hails-Smith

The US private equity outfit announced last Friday (19 April) it had made a significant investment in Addison Lee, which was founded in 1975 with one car and has grown to a fleet of over 4,500 vehicles.

Carlyle said the deal – reported to be the sale of a majority stake – would enable it to expand in the UK and internationally and broaden its transport services to a wider range of corporates and individual customers.

Carlyle was advised by Latham, which fielded lead corporate partner Michael Bond, who handles the US firm’s relationship with the client in London. Other Latham lawyers on the deal included corporate associates Benedict Nwaeke and Andrew Clark, employment and benefits partner Stephen Brown, finance partner Sam Hamilton and finance associate Dan Borg.

Joelson Wilson acted for longstanding client Addison Lee, putting forward Philippe Hails-Smith as the lead adviser alongside fellow corporate and commercial partner Philippa Sturt.

Linklaters advised Carlyle’s lenders, a consortium led by ING, with its team understood to have included counsel Oliver Sceales.

Background to this deal:

Carlyle’s main advisers on UK deals are Clifford Chance, Latham and Linklaters, with the former wining the majority of its City instructions. Latham is its primary law firm in the US and handles a small proportion of its deals in London, with Bond leading on its disposal of Britax Childcare to Nordic Capital in 2010 (29 November 2010). However, the imminent exit of Clifford Chance global private equity head and Carlyle relationship partner David Walker to join Latham’s City base is expected to strengthen Latham’s hold on the London relationship (8 April 2013).

Joelson Wilson has advised Addison Lee on all corporate and commercial matters over the last ten years, with Hails-Smith at the helm of the team.

For more on Carlyle’s relationship with Clifford Chance and the impact of Walker’s resignation, see City analysis