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The latest legal news from The Lawyer, covering UK and international deals, disputes, lateral hires and updates on law firms and the Bar.

Arrest warrant issued for Eurasian Resources Group CEO in SFO investigation

In the wake of the decade’s most important case concerning legal privilege, an arrest warrant has been issued against the CEO of the Eurasian Natural Resource Corporation (ENRC)’s parent company as part of the Serious Fraud Office’s ongoing investigation into a string of allegations. The warrant was issued against Eurasian Resources Group (ERG) CEO Benedikt […]

Fieldfisher

Fieldfisher offers bonuses to non-fee earners for first time

Fieldfisher is making bonuses available for non-fee earners in the UK for the first time, after a string of stand-out financial results from the firm. The move means high-performing staff in Fieldfisher’s business services’ functions, for example, will be granted a bonus. However, the rewards are discretionary, meaning not everyone will be in line for […]

ITV hunts for new GC as Garard steps down

ITV’s longstanding general counsel Andrew Garard has stepped down after over a decade in the role. The television network has confirmed that Garard will leave his position on 31 July. He joined ITV in 2007 as group legal director and GC, before becoming company secretary two years later. He also sits on the board of […]

cambridge

Mills & Reeve hands out £2m in bonuses after hitting record revenue high

Mills & Reeve has posted its financial results for 2017/18, with revenue reaching a record high of £106.3m. It is a 14 per cent rise on last year’s £92.3m. Much of the growth was driven by the firm’s June 2017 merger with London real estate and construction boutique firm Maxwell Winward. That tie-up accounted for 41 […]

Facebook

Gibson Dunn advises Facebook in first blow over data scandal

Gibson Dunn & Crutcher is advising Facebook in the ongoing probe into its data protection breaches, as it faces a £500,000 fine from the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). Co-chair of the firm’s international arbitration practice group, dispute resolution partner Penny Madden is leading for Facebook in London, following a report by the ICO that claims […]

Hausfeld heads up BMW’s cartel claim in the High Court

Litigation boutique Hausfeld has filed a class action claim in the High Court for German car manufacturer BMW against two maritime transport companies, which were fined by the European Commission earlier this year for price-fixing. The firm filed the claim on 10 July in what is its third major class-action case, following earlier work against […]

Peter Hasson

Clydes sees 10% uplift in profit while turnover breaks £550m

Clyde & Co narrowly missed out on double-digit growth in both profit and turnover last year, recording a 9 per cent increase in turnover alongside a 10 per cent profit boost in the 2017/18 financial year. Turnover at Clydes grew from £508m to £551.3m, while profits at the firm were up from £127.6m to £140.5m […]

Duncan Weir

Bevan Brittan revenue reaches £44m in sixth consecutive year of growth

Bevan Brittan has posted its sixth year of consecutive growth, posting a 12 per cent increase in turnover from £39.2m to £44m. Net profit stood at £9.6m last year, up from £7.8m the previous financial year. Average profit per equity partner increased from £313,000 to £443,000 – a phenomenal rise of 43 per cent. The firm […]

Deals

Clifford Chance bags role for Inmarsat as it snubs hostile US takeover

Clifford Chance has taken the lead for UK satellite company Inmarsat as it rejects a hostile £3.2bn takeover bid from US rival EchoStar, advised by White & Case. Clifford Chance advised Inmarsat, fielded by corporate and M&A partners Jonny Myers, David Lewis and Lee Coney.  Following a last-minute snag at Inmarsat, EchoStar, which is controlled by […]

Rolls-Royce

Linklaters and Eversheds lead as Rolls-Royce continues spate of asset sales

Linklaters and Eversheds Sutherland have advised in the £500m sale of Rolls-Royce’s loss-making marine division, two weeks after the British manufacturing giant revealed the extent of its major business shake-up. Linklaters corporate partner Hugo Stolkin and managing associate Adam Rogowski have advised the buyer, Norwegian defence, marine and aerospace company Kongsberg Gruppen.  Kongsberg, which is 50 per […]

US firms grab roles as Praxair closes in on $45bn merger

A raft of firms have been called up as Praxair completes the next step of its proposed billion-dollar merger with German oil and gas giant Linde. McDermott Will & Emery took the lead for New York-listed Praxair in the €5bn sale of its European gases business to Tokyo-listed Taiyo Nippon Sanso. The divestment comes as Praxair eyes […]

oil

Mishcon enters the fray as Unaoil is summonsed by SFO

Mishcon de Reya clients Unaoil Monaco and Unaoil are the latest defendants to be drawn in to the Serious Fraud Office’s (SFO) investigation into alleged conspiracy over the award of contracts in Iraq. Longtime Unaoil adviser and Mishcon partner Jo Rickards will lead for the firm in a case which already sees US outfits White & […]

Pinsents and 3VB seal victory over Goldman Sachs in banking dispute

Pinsent Masons and 3 Verulam Buildings (3VB) took the lead roles for Portuguese banking group Novo Banco as it fought off two claims from a string of litigation heavyweights in the Supreme Court. Lord Sumption handed down the judgment in the Supreme Court, dismissing an appeal to an earlier decision over a liability transferred to […]

Linklaters and Jones Day lose appeal in Mastercard/Visa battle

Jones Day, Linklaters and Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy have failed to secure victory for clients Mastercard and Visa in their ongoing row with British retailers over interchange fees. In February 2017, Mr Justice Popplewell threw out a £450m claim made on behalf of retailers such as ASDA and Morrisons alleging that Mastercard charged anti-competitive […]

barrister bar bptc

Crisis averted as criminal barristers accept £15m legal aid offer

The Criminal Bar Association (CBA)’s feud with the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has ended with 51.55 per cent of members voting to accept the £15m offer that was put to them two weeks ago. The offer was accepted through a slim majority voting in favour of the reforms with an 85 per cent turnout from […]

money finance

MoJ offers £15m to Criminal Bar after fees dispute

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has offered the Criminal Bar Association (CBA) £15m as the government entity seeks to end the increasingly tense standoff between the two bodies. The deal is said to be an entirely new investment and will include an £8m cash injection for barristers who have lost money through a change in […]

Hodge Malek

39 Essex’s Hodge Malek QC leads four-strong team to 3VB

3 Verulam Buildings (3VB) has taken Hodge Malek QC and four junior barristers from 39 Essex Chambers, along with three international lawyers who join as associate members. Malek – who acted for Alexandra Tolstoy and her children during the mammoth case against Russian oligarch Sergei Pugachev last year – will join the set today bringing barristers […]

Global News

Binary code bursts from phones held by people with a matrix style overlay of glowing electronic numbers.

A&O and Freshfields take the lead on £2bn telecoms buyout

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Allen & Overy (A&O) have advised telecoms giants Veon and CK Hutchison on the £2.2bn buyout of Italian mobile phone venture Wind Tre. A&O’s global managing partner Andrew Ballheimer, TMT partner Simon Toms and global head of telecoms Tom Levine led the deal for Veon. Global co-head of antitrust Antonio Bavasso and senior associate Ross Ferguson provided […]

Gianni Origoni joins rivals in Shanghai

Italian heavyweight Gianni Origoni Grippo Cappelli & Partners is launching an office in Shanghai in its first international expansion for four years. The Shanghai office is Gianni Origoni’s eleventh office globally, and its second in Asia. It launched in Hong Kong in 2014 and signed a formal alliance agreement with Chinese firm Han Kun Law […]

Luxembourg

Ashurst bets on Europe with Luxembourg launch

Ashurst has been given the go-ahead to open in Luxembourg after receiving approval from the local bar association. The new office, focusing on finance and funds, will open in October this year, with corporate partner Isabelle Lentz at the helm. Lentz is currently the head of Ashurst’s Luxembourg desk in London, which was set up […]

Brazil

HFW strengthens LatAm presence with new Brazilian association

HFW has announced a new formal association with Brazilian firm CAL, while also hiring aviation partner Julio Costa from Mayer Brown‘s associate firm in the South American country. Costa left Tauil & Chequer Advogados to set up CAL alongside insurance partner Gustavo Lasalvia and six fee-earners. The new firm is expected to gain regulatory approval […]

Mark Shaw

Wildgen opens first international office with London launch

Benelux firm Wildgen has opened its first overseas office with the hire of former hedge fund in-house lawyer Mark Shaw to head up its UK operations. The firm has set up a small one-partner office in Mayfair, though will look to move into space in the City once it begins to expand. Speaking to The Lawyer, […]

payment

Freshfields and Weil lead as European payments rivals join forces

Nearly a year after advising on Hellman & Friedman’s takeover of Nets, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has strengthened its relationship with the private equity house by acting on a further deal for its payments portfolio company. The deal sees Nordic payments company Nets agree a tie-up with Concardis Payment Group, a rival provider in the German-speaking […]

Global Features

Frankfurt

Latham partner moves to DLA’s Frankfurt office

DLA Piper has snared a corporate partner from Latham & Watkins‘ Frankfurt office, as the firm continues to bolster its capital market divisions in Germany. Roland Maass will be joining the firm from Latham, where he has been a partner since 2006. His practice mainly focuses on capital markets transactions, advising domestic and international companies […]

Cyber attack warning. Man securing computer data base by pressing alert sign for cyber attack on digital display.

Hogan Lovells joins war for data privacy talent with new hire

Hogan Lovells has made a bid to remain at the top of the data protection boom, with a new hire in its privacy and cybersecurity practice. Privacy partner Nicola Fulford has been brought in to join the firm’s 12-strong team from Kemp Little, four years after the launch of Hogan Lovells’ privacy and cybersecurity practice. […]

Ashurst

Ashurst in disputes push with Mayer Brown construction hire

Mayer Brown construction and arbitration partner Tom Duncan has left the firm after six years for Ashurst‘s London disputes group. Duncan joined Mayer Brown in 2001 and made partner at the firm 10 years later. He will join Ashurst’s disputes team as the seventh new hire to the group globally this year. Other new joiners in […]

Stephen Besen

A&O snares Shearman & Sterling M&A veteran

Allen & Overy has strengthened its M&A practice in New York with the hire of a partner from Shearman & Sterling’s corporate practice. Stephen Besen joins the magic circle firm after 17 years at Shearman & Sterling, further bolstering its US M&A practice. Besen began his legal career in 1983 at Weil Gotshal & Manges. At […]

moves, lateral hires and exits

Macfarlanes loses PE partner to White & Case

White & Case has hired its second lawyer from Macfarlanes in just over a year, adding private equity partner Emmie Jones to its team in London. Jones was a partner at Macfarlanes for five years after her promotion in 2013. She had spent her entire legal career at the City firm, having started as a […]

London

Pinsents competition litigation head decamps for US firm

Pinsent Masons head of competition litigation Ben Lasserson has joined US firm Strange & Butler as head of its London office and fourth partner globally. Lasserson trained and qualified at magic circle firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer before moving to Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom in 2007. He joined Pinsents as a partner nearly four years […]

Stewarts

Stewarts enters financial crime market with QC hire

Stewarts will launch a new financial crime practice following the hire of 2 Bedford Row white-collar silk Richard Kovalevsky QC as a partner into its London office next month. Kovalevsky has been practising for 35 years after being called to the Bar in 1983, taking silk two decades later. He will bring the firm’s partner […]

BWB gains new COO from Linklaters

Bates Wells Braithwaite (BWB) has hired Linklaters global finance and projects division business manager Sally Procopis as its next chief operating officer. Procopis, who was at Linklaters for nearly a decade, will take over from outgoing partnership executive officer Peter Bennett. Bennett is retiring from the firm after 12 years. Procopis will coordinate all of […]

A&O

A&O lures back partner after two-year Cleary stint

Allen & Overy (A&O) has rehired its former head of non-contentious financial services regulation, two years after he left the magic circle firm for Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton. Bob Penn spent nearly a decade in the A&O partnership and was a member of its financial services regulation team before leaving to join the US firm in September […]

hire

White & Case ramps up City recruitment with in-house PE hire

White & Case has gone in-house for its next hire in London, recruiting Lone Star lawyer Shane McDonald as a partner in its banking team. McDonald has been senior vice president at Lone Star-affiliated company Hudson Advisors since 2013, when he moved in-house from Ropes & Gray. He started out his legal career at Gadens […]

Latest Briefings

Parliamentary group proposes a Financial Services Tribunal

Kevin Hollinrake MP (Co-Chair of the APPG on Fair Business Banking) has published his report titled “Fair Business Banking for All: How to improve access to justice for businesses in financial services disputes” (the Report). Following the APPG’s responses to the FCA’s consultation on expanding the FOS’s jurisdiction (CP18/3), the Report sets out various recommendations […]

Draft legislative proposal introduces a minimum price for CO2

The Dutch government has published a draft legislative proposal for consultation that introduces a minimum price for CO2. The minimum price is introduced by way of a tax levied on electricity producers. The tax is levied per ton of CO2 emission. In the proposal, the tax rate per ton CO2 is calculated each year as […]

Adoption of unregistered land as highway

By Paul Weeks Unregistered land in unknown ownership can cause a headache on development and the extent of the issue will often depend upon what the land is needed for…

Court of Appeal: Catja Thum v Oliver Thum

The Court of Appeal today dismissed Oliver Thum’s appeal and ruled that his wife Catja Thum’s divorce and related financial claims should proceed in the English court and not, as Dr Thum had argued, in Berlin. Giving judgment for the Court of Appeal Lord Justice Moylan said…

Support fund for tourism and cinema incentive for major international events

One of the purposes of the Fund is to grant support to programmes to strengthen Portugal’s position as a tourist destination. Against this background, it was acknowledged that one of the ways to boost Portugal’s image as a tourist destination would be to attract and put on major international events…

Reform of civil forfeiture orders in Jersey

MONEYVAL’s inspection of Jersey’s AML regime in 2015 and its subsequent report issued in May 2016 has focussed the minds of Jersey legislators and regulators to actively prosecute more financial crime and in particular to introduce a non­ conviction based confiscation regime to apply in parallel with the conviction based system…

Cayman Islands: Appointing receivers in aid of equitable execution

A recent decision of the Cayman Islands Grand Court in Y v R (9 January 2018) has confirmed the applicable principles concerning the appointment of receivers to aid enforcement of a Cayman Islands’ judgment. Equitable execution is a means of enforcing judgment debts where other methods of enforcement are not possible or have not been […]

Dealing with the death of a sole director

By Matthew Brown Many BVI companies have only one director/shareholder. When that individual dies, the company can be left in a vulnerable position, especially if the company faces pending or contemplated court proceedings. Conyers’ Matthew Brown suggests ways of handling this difficult situation…

The business of law is changing

We posed the following question to 15 experts from across the legal industry: “What do you believe lawyers and law firms need to do to prepare for the future of legal services?” We were surprised at the diversity of their answers. From design thinking to modernising service delivery; understanding clients’ needs and giving added value; […]

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