Deutsche Bank expands City legal roster

Deutsche Bank has extended its list of preferred City legal advisers with at least five firms being added to the enlarged roster.

Ashurst, CMS Cameron McKenna, Hogan Lovells and Simmons & Simmons are among the firms to be included on the list alongside the previous roster of Allen & Overy, Clifford Chance, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Linklaters, Slaughter and May and White & Case.

The revised list comes as part of an ongoing review of the investment bank’s legal function that will also see it send low-cost work to its own legal services centre based in Berlin.

Deutsche Bank sources stressed that the list of firms does not represent a formal panel and does not preclude the use of other firms.

“There are firms outside of the group who still do lots of work [for us],” said one source with knowledge of the situation. “It’s not a barrier to entry or an impediment to success.”

One banking partner at a City firm added: “Their panel doesn’t matter much because it’s not exclusive. They’re expecting to get cost savings; the firms that come in to try to get a piece of the pie will put pressure on costs.”

The Berlin centre will take on some of the bank’s high-volume legal work and will complement existing centres in Birmingham, Jacksonville and Mumbai, although it is understood that the office has been designed to relieve workload pressure on the existing in-house team rather than take work away from external counsel.

One partner at a firm with strong links to the bank said: “It’s not something that really concerns us as it’s nothing to do with the work we’ve done for them.”