Simmons & Simmons’ London-based Japan business group advised on’s £179.6m bid for iTouch, the largest-ever public takeover bid by a Japanese corporate in the UK.

Simmons will hope to gain For-side’s UK corporate work now that it has a major presence here. It is the mobile content provider’s third European acquisition that Simmons has worked on.

Olswang advised iTouch, which has operations in 25 countries. The firm has worked with iTouch for a number of years, advising it on its 2003 e60m (£40.5m) Movilisto Group acquisition.

Partner Simon Morgan led the Olswang team, which now faces a battle to keep the client as Simmons muscles in.

Simmons claimed that this is the first UK public takeover by a Japanese corporate since 1995, when the firm advised Ricoh on its acquisition of Gestetner Holdings. This time corporate partner Edward Baker led the team, with competition expertise provided by partner Charles Bankes.