Slaughters and best friend Bredin land Steria purchase

Slaughter and May‘s best friends strategy has again proved its viability, with the firm acting on a £470m takeover alongside Bredin Prat.

Slaughters’ French best friend Bredin introduced the firm to Paris-based IT services provider Groupe Steria.

Both firms advised Steria on its £471.1m takeover of Xansa, a UK-headquartered IT services and outsourcing group, which turned to Ashurst. Corporate partners Paul Gadd and Graeme Ward led for Ashurst.

Slaughters head of corporate Chris Saul said the deal was indicative of a growing trend for the firm of working on more overseas deals, either through referrals among best friends or working alongside them for existing clients.

Slaughters and Bredin have endured a complicated relationship in the last two years, with Slaughters ceding its Paris office to Bredin in late 2005 after a period of international retrenchment for the UK firm. Two partners remained in Slaughters’ Paris office, including corporate finance partner Andrew McClean, who worked on this deal.

Slaughters’ London office coordinated the corporate aspects of the deal, while its Paris office and Bredin led on the financing, which was provided by BNP Paribas. The French bank turned to White & Case for advice.