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Innovative lawyers 2017: Managing Complexity and Scale

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StandoutLinklaters89926Led the hive-off of 61 per cent of National Grid’s gas distribution network, one of the UK’s largest infrastructure deals in the past 10 years and involving the largest ever sterling corporate bond issue. Lawyers developed the strategy for the separation, established a new financing platform to enable the capital raising and satisfy regulatory concerns, and a new corporate structure for the hived-off gas transmission business, Cadent.
StandoutCMS88925Played a critical role to reform the Mexican electricity market, helping the government to procure a series of renewable energy projects and cut energy prices through a competitive auction process. The firm also helped create a new independent market operator and increase international investment.
StandoutPLMJ88824Negotiated a 50-50 public-private ownership split for Portugal’s renationalised airline TAP, in which day-to-day control of operations remained with Atlantic Gateway to assuage concerns of international investors. Commended: Diogo Perestrelo.
StandoutOrrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe89724The firm created a new insolvency restructuring plan for SoLocal after shareholders rejected the original. Lawyers made an unusual combination of elements often used in insolvency restructurings to create the plan, a first for modern restructurings in France.
StandoutEversheds Sutherland88824Its proprietary DealMaster platform helped manage multiple work streams in the partial hive-off of National Grid’s gas distribution business. A real-time contract tracker and automation tool supported the review, production and completion of over 1,000 contracts with third parties and employees.
Highly CommendedHogan Lovells88723Negotiated with multiple trustees to enable the merger of Rolls-Royce’s defined benefit pension schemes and subsequent creation of a contribution pot to fairly distribute a £1.3bn surplus in one scheme while managing deficits in others. Commended: Katie Banks and Beth Sheehan.
Highly CommendedHerbert Smith Freehills78823Managed multiple interests from 2009 to negotiate the $1.2bn settlement in 2016 for claims made by Emea entities across 23 jurisdictions against telecoms provider Nortel Networks after its collapse. The firm streamlined proceedings by having all claims processed in the UK.
Highly CommendedWhite & Case78722Created a structure to balance risk and prevent a significant price increase in its financial services client’s acquisition of a stake in miner Anglo American, by way of a £2bn mandatory exchangeable bond that can be exchanged for shares or cash.
Highly CommendedHerbert Smith Freehills78722Advised on a complex IT migration and outsourcing project for TSB after its split from Lloyds Banking Group. Lawyers created “clean teams” to manage inherent sensitivities when the two sides were in conflict.
CommendedWilliam Fry77721Lawyers led the strategy and navigated multiple regulatory frameworks to enable the joint venture purchase of the Project Jewel loan portfolio, which includes Ireland’s largest retail centre.
CommendedUría Menéndez68721Balanced the interests of multiple stakeholders to enable the €2.3bn restructuring of Grupo Isolux Corsán, the engineering company, with locations in 35 countries.
CommendedSullivan & Cromwell77721Lawyers managed multi-jurisdictional clearance processes and created the structure enabling Diebold’s combination with Wincor Nixdorf, the ATM maker, the first US-German business combination completed by way of an exchange offer using US-registered shares of a US bidder.
CommendedShearman & Sterling77721Co-ordinated the simultaneous negotiation and agreement of four sales and purchase agreements, balancing interests and interlinking conditions to enable Meenakshi’s acquisition of a 40.5 per cent stake in Paiton power plant from Engie.
CommendedMacfarlanes77721When member-owned association Visa Europe was sold to Visa Inc, lawyers helped create a transaction structure to balance the interests of 4,500-plus members in the face of ongoing litigation claims.
CommendedHogan Lovells76821The firm represented property developer Argent on the redevelopment of Brent Cross South. This included new project and joint venture agreements, managing multiple stakeholder interests and negotiating a variety of leases, to bring new infrastructure to London.
CommendedFreshfields Bruckhaus Deringer77721Acted for a consortium of bidders on two big highway developments in Slovakia, where successful public-private partnerships are rare. The bid required new legal approaches to fit an English PPP model to local Slovak law.
CommendedBonelliErede76821Acting for four leading Italian banks, the firm helped develop new governance structures and negotiated simultaneous resolution of the EU Bank Recovery and Resolution Directive for each. The BRRD aims to prevent taxpayer money being used to bail out failing banks.
CommendedAllen & Overy77721Acted for Amsterdam-listed food group Ahold in its merger with Euronext Brussels-listed counterpart Delhaize Group, creating a tax transparent structure for its client and managing antitrust and merger clearance processes across several jurisdictions.
CommendedShearman & Sterling67720Advised K-Sure and commercial lenders on Bahrain LNG, the first regasification facility in the Middle East to be developed on a limited-recourse project finance basis. The facility helps reduce Bahrain’s energy reliance on surrounding countries.
CommendedPaul Hastings67720In the first major oil company restructuring outside the US since the industry downturn, the firm helped align interests of 31,000-plus shareholders and two creditor groups to enable Gulf Keystone Petroleum to restructure its debt.
CommendedEversheds Sutherland67720Advising on one of Europe’s largest redevelopment projects, Mayfield in Manchester, lawyers were instrumental in land acquisition, financing and creation of a two-tiered limited joint venture partnership with three adjoining landowners.
CommendedBaker McKenzie67720Enabled Bain Capital’s £2.2bn exit from food distributor Brakes, consolidating the interests of almost 200 minority shareholders in under two months to complete the deal.
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