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Bird & Bird


Bird & Bird - London
  • 15 Fetter Lane
  • London
  • Greater London
  • UK
  • EC4A 1JP
  • CEO David Kerr
  • Non-Executive Chairman Michael Frie
  • Partners 274
  • Other fee-earners  839

The Firm Bird & Bird is an international law firm, with a rare and invaluable grasp of strategic commercial issues. The firm combines exceptional legal expertise with deep industry knowledge and refreshingly creative thinking, to help clients achieve their commercial goals.

Principal Areas of Work Bird & Bird offers broad advisory, transactional and contentious capability with particular focus on key industry sectors. The firm’s sector and practice groups interact to provide the best possible client service.
Key industry sectors: Aerospace, defence and security, automotive, aviation, communications, electronics, energy and utilities, financial services, food and beverage, healthcare, information technology, life sciences, media and sport.
Main Areas of Practice: Banking and finance, commercial, corporate, dispute resolution, EU and competition law, franchising, intellectual property, international HR Services, outsourcing, privacy and data protection, public projects and procurements, real estate, regulatory and administrative, restructuring and insolvency, tax, trade and customs and transformational projects.

International With 26 offices across Europe, the Middle East and Asia, Bird & Bird is well placed to offer local expertise within a global context, helpintg its clients to realise their business goals both domestically and internationally. Bird & Bird applies a “one firm” approach to its practice, which enables its lawyers to offer a highly integrated service.

The firm has offices in Abu Dhabi, Beijing, Bratislava, Brussels, Budapest, Copenhagen, Dubai, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, The Hague, Hamburg, Helsinki, Hong Kong, London, Lyon, Madrid, Milan, Munich, Paris, Prague, Rome, Shanghai, Skanderborg, Singapore, Stockholm and Warsaw.

  • Automotive Simon Shooter
  • Aviation 
  • Banking & Finance Trystan Tether
  • Commercial Simon Shooter, Nicholas Perry
  • Communications Graeme Maguire, Ronald Hendrikx
  • Corporate Neil Blundell
  • Corporate Restructuring & Insolvency Joss Hargrave
  • Dispute Resolution Ludovic de Walden, Steven Baker
  • Electronics Mark Heaney
  • Employment Ian Hunter
  • Energy & Utilities Matt Bonass, Michael Rudd
  • EU & Competition Richard Eccles, Peter Willis
  • Financial Services Christian Bartsch
  • Food Mark Hilton
  • Healthcare Dominic Cook
  • Information Technology Roger Bickerstaff
  • Intellectual Property Morag Macdonald, Katharine Stephens
  • Life Sciences Sally Shorthose
  • Media Matt Dennis
  • Outsourcing Mark Leach, Christian Bartsch
  • Privacy & Data Protection Ruth Boardman
  • Real Estate Jonathan Baker
  • Regulatory & Administrative Peter Elliot, Roger Bickerstaff
  • Sports Jonathan Taylor
  • Tax Mathew Oliver


Banking & Finance - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 8 partners
- 24 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Equally weighted between lenders and borrower work, listing many major names on its client roster. Extensive international footprint, which connects the banking team across a variety of jurisdictions. Particular expertise in the energy sector and on sports-related transactions.

Work highlights Acted for Sustainable Developments on its capacity as asset manager for Green Investment Bank on the financing of 149 NCP car parks.

Notable practitioners  

Head of department Trystan Tether is able to call upon 25 years of experience in the area. He is known for his experience in general banking matters and corporate transactions but also has knowledge of the developing electronic financial services market.

Andrew Hallgarth has a varied practice within banking and finance, covering work from aviation finance to emerging markets. He has a depth of experience in international transactions, with a particular focus on CEE.

Significant clients BNP Paribas, Santander, Goldbeck Construction, Lloyds Bank, Ahli United Bank (UK).

Competition/European Law - London (Firms)

What the team is known for Handles high-profile damages claims as part of its broad competition practice. 

Work highlights Acted for Nokia on its claim against members of the liquid crystal display cartel.

Notable practitioners  

Peter Willis is a key contact at the firm.

Corporate/M&A - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 11 partners
- 17 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Remains a go-to firm in a number of industry sectors, including technology and telecommunications. Displays notable bench strength with a number of seasoned mid-market deal lawyers.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are leaders in the technology space." 

Work highlights Advised Lorillard Tobacco in its purchase of SKYCIG for £30 million.

Advised Espresso Group in relation to its acquisition by Discovery Communications in a deal worth £20 million.

Notable practitioners  

Simon Allport is a "really good lawyer" who is "one of the best experts on the Takeover Panel in the UK." He recently led the firm's representation of Longships in its £18 million purchase of Proxama.

Neil Blundell is highly thought of for his sector expertise in media and telecommunications. Among his recent work was acting for Espresso Group in its £20 million sale to Discovery Communications.

Matthew Bonass is credited by peers as a strong lawyer in the energy sector. In the last year, he represented Bluefield Partners on multiple acquisitions relating to solar energy.

Matt Dennis is a "very competent, capable and practical lawyer," according to sources, who point out his ability in TMT matters. Of late, he acted for Omnicell in its purchase of SurgiChem from Bupa Care Homes.

Significant clients BT, Alternative Networks, blinkx, Moser Bayer, Wilhelmsen.

Employment - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 3 partners
- 12 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Broad expertise encompassing contentious matters in the employment tribunal and High Court, notable advisory work and industrial relations. Well known for its work on pan-European projects.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"They are prepared to change their approach, so nothing is static. They are prepared to listen to what the drivers are for the company and then be responsive to that."

"We have found them to be helpful, available and able to give very direct and practical advice."

Work highlights Advised Monarch Aircraft Engineering on a transaction with Flybe, which resulted in the TUPE transfer of 140 employees, recognition issues with Prospect the Union and unfair dismissal claims.

Advised Dart Group and its subsidiary Jet2.com on disputes with BALPA and UNITE including defending prospective High Court actions relating to collective bargaining.

Notable practitioners  

Ian Hunter heads the firm's employment department and is recommended for being a "measured, sensible and pragmatic lawyer." He is experienced in both contentious and advisory work.

Warren Wayne is adept at advising on restrictive covenants and confidentiality issues. Clients appreciate his ability to "put everything into a wider context" and to "absorb pressure whilst focusing on the main objective."

Elizabeth Lang is praised for her ability to "identify the big picture and where litigation might be going." She is known for her industrial relations work, with sources singling her out because of her knowledge of union strategy, and one recommending her for "tricky cases with reputational issues."

Significant clients Amey, BAE Systems, Yahoo!, Lenovo, Quadrature Capital.

Information Technology - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 24 partners
- 75 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Impressive and broad-ranging IT practice, with an excellent reputation for major transactional and litigious work. Routinely handles multi-jurisdictional matters, drawing on the strength of the firm's global network. Further supported by its respected IP practice.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Their overall service is excellent. At an early stage they invest significant time and effort in understanding our business and continue to do that, and as a result the advice is high quality and appropriate in the business context." 

"We leverage the Bird & Bird international network and we're able to do it via our client partner, so we don't have to conduct a number of separate engagements or worry about our requirements and what we're looking for."

Work highlights Advised the Ministry of Justice on numerous matters in relation to its new programme of major multiparty IT procurements.

Provided counsel to Microsoft on aspects of its software dispute with Motorola over Xbox and smartphone patents.

Notable practitioners  

International practice co-leader and public sector expert Roger Bickerstaff is regarded as a "real stalwart" of the IT market. He maintains his excellent reputation for large-scale procurements and negotiations, especially in connection with EU law.

According to clients, Christian Bartsch is "always very engaged and very helpful at managing the international collation of advice." He is active in the financial services sector, and has a particular specialism in Indian outsourcing.

Dominic Cook remains a well-regarded figure in the technology sector and is known for the strength of his client relationships. His practice focuses on transformational projects for both public and private entities which routinely involve multiple parties and complex agreements. 

Graham Smith is renowned for his copyright expertise, which is complemented by significant capability in technology disputes and e-commerce matters. He is an authority on internet regulatory issues and has in-depth knowledge of investigatory interception and electronic legislation.  

Significant clients Nuance Communications Group, Cadence, Lenovo Group, Qliktech, Department of Energy and Climate Change.

Intellectual Property - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 17 partners
- 40 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Considered by many the acme of IP practices, this firm is wholly dedicated to the discipline and is rare in offering both acute specialisation and the sheer numbers of specialists to handle mandates of any size. Particularly strong with respect to hi-tech and life sciences patent work.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They have always been very approachable. Their grasp of the issues - both from a pure legal perspective, and appreciating the in-house angles - has been well received."

"They provide a Rolls-Royce service." 

Work highlights Advising Microsoft on its international patent infringement dispute with Motorola concerning smartphone and Xbox technology, with particular focus on UK and German litigation.

Represented ConvaTec in a patent dispute with Smith & Nephew regarding silverised wound dressings.

Notable practitioners  

Peter Brownlow has a wide-ranging IP practice which takes in contentious and non-contentious work across all rights, although he is best known for trade mark, copyright and designs matters. He is "imaginative and collegiate in his approach to litigation," according to sources. 

Morag Macdonald is highly regarded as an IP litigation specialist, and she has an excellent track record handling patent, trade mark and copyright disputes. She has much experience co-ordinating clients' multi-jurisdictional IP strategy. She is described by sources as "very bright and perceptive."

Katharine Stephens is a seasoned and highly esteemed IP litigator with a particular focus on international electronics, engineering and life sciences patent disputes. She also advises on trade mark and design cases.

Jane Mutimear has an admirably broad IP litigation practice which takes in cases concerning all rights. She is particularly adept at multi-jurisdictional litigation strategy. One source says: "She has a formidable energy to her. When others' heads start to drop, she's very much awake and asking the right questions."

Neil Jenkins has a comprehensive IP litigation practice which covers all rights, although his metier is in leading cross-border patent disputes. One market source says: "He's very experienced and very thorough - really knows his stuff."

Mark Hilton is a noted patent litigator, particularly with regard to life sciences and chemicals actions. He also advises on IP licensing, audits and related regulatory issues. One source says he is a "good tactician who keeps his eye on the ball and keeps abreast of the issues."

Mark Heaney is an esteemed IP litigator with deep experience in handling patent and copyright disputes, quite often involving electronics. "He thoroughly understands IP law, and has excellent technical skills and a wonderfully approachable and engaging style."

Significant clients Actavis, BT, Nestlé, Microsoft, Teva. 

Litigation - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 9 partners
- 25 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Significant profile in complex and technical disputes, with impressive sector strength in arenas such as TMT, finance and energy. Highly sought after for international work, receiving frequent instructions from corporate and government clients.

What's new? Appointed to UniCredit's global dispute resolution panel.

Work highlights Acted for Swedish pension fund Första AP-fonden in its successful negligence and contractual breach of duty claim against Bank of New York Mellon for losses arising from the client's securities lending programme. 

Acted for Despina Papadimitriov in a successful Court of Appeal claim establishing liability to a non-customer third party against Crédit Agricole Corporate & Investment Bank. The claim arose from a multimillion-dollar fraud against the Michailidis family by their former business partner.

Notable practitioners  

Steven Baker heads the department and is described as a "tremendous litigator - he is very clever and efficient, and handles multiple clients very well." He is regularly called upon to handle high-level financial sector disputes, in addition to his notable depth of contractual expertise.

Ludovic de Walden is acclaimed as being an "extraordinary character. If you've got a difficult case he'll just never give an inch." His practice incorporates significant strength in financial matters and art world disputes, including fraud and title disputes, and he is well versed in cross-border work.

Sophie Eyre's expertise covers areas such as civil fraud and asset tracing, and she is well regarded for her expertise in commercial work and issues involving art. Sources comment that "she's absolutely meticulous in her preparation and quite upfront and fun to work with. She's very savvy, and really outstanding as a litigator."

Significant clients Nokia, BT, Everything Everywhere, Virgin Atlantic, RWE npower.

Real Estate Finance - London (Firms)

Basic facts about the department
- 8 partners
- 18 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Primarily lender-focused practice with an emphasis on advising international clients, incorporating specialist expertise in Islamic finance. Also active on mezzanine lending and development finance transactions.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Always efficient, approachable, helpful and friendly, with the backing of a good team in all main disciplines." 

What's new? Ben Henry joins the firm from Mayer Brown.

Work highlights Advised Titlestone Property Lending on the financing of a student accommodation redevelopment in Coventry.

Notable practitioners  

Russell Dellar is a real estate finance specialist with considerable experience on cross-border transactions. He acts for a variety of banks and financial institutions, including several German banks, on all aspects of secured lending transactions, corporate disposals and loan portfolio sales and acquisitions. Clients say he is "a very good communicator."

Significant clients Santander, Macquarie Bank, Byblos Bank, NatWest, Handelsbanken.

Asset Finance - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 4 partners 
- 3 of counsel
- 8 associates

What the team is known for Noted for its work advising airlines on major aircraft financing deals. Also acknowledged for its increasing presence on significant helicopter finance transactions.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They have performed very well and are constantly available." 

"Strong on the technicalities of aircraft." 

Work highlights Acted for Virgin Atlantic on its dealings with three different lessors over the sale and leaseback of 11 Boeing 787 aircraft. 

Acted for Milestone Aviation on the purchase, and in some cases leasing, of 11 helicopters.

Notable practitioners  

Simon Chamberlain frequently advises a range of entities including airlines, lessors and private individuals on aircraft acquisitions and matters related to ownership and operation.

Paul Briggs leads the firm's aviation sector group and regularly acts for airlines, lessors and manufacturers on aviation finance transactions. Clients describe him as "very knowledgeable about the industry and a very affable negotiator."

Significant clients Jet2.com, Emirates, NAS Air, Air Asia, Avolon.

Aviation - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 4 partners
-11 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Industry-centric practice particularly recognised for its representation of airlines. Offers a high level of proficiency on a spectrum of aviation matters including commercial regulatory work, leasing and commercial litigation.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"Monumentally proactive, 110% accommodating and they do everything they can to adapt their style to the client's interests."

"Very active and very good." 

What's new? Insurance specialist Simon Phippard has joined the team. He previously worked in-house at Rolls-Royce.

Work highlights Acted for Virgin Atlantic Airways on a dispute with Koito and Mitsubishi in relation to a supply of seats that were unsuitable for purpose.

Instructed by Jet2.com to defend against passenger compensation claims linked to EU Regulation 261/2004.

Notable practitioners  

Paul Briggs uses his industry experience to provide "business-oriented" and pragmatic expertise in the aviation space. Sources commend him for his proactive style and knowledge of both civilian and military aviation.

Robin Springthorpe is well regarded for his work in aviation disputes and regulatory knowledge, with commentators describing him as an "extremely talented litigator, good on details and experienced."

Annabelle Wheeler is commended by peers as a "diligent and smart" associate. She has notable experience in assisting on product liability and lease disputes.

Simon Chamberlain is recognised by sources for having a "huge amount of experience" in aviation matters and for his strong rapport with clients. His areas of expertise include maintenance matters and contract terminations. 

Significant clients Alba Star, Sudan Airways, Titan Airways, Milestone Group, WOW Air.

Capital Markets - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 5 partners
- 8 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: London

What the team is known for Advises on IPOs, secondary issues and other AIM work. Significant sector experience in telecoms, energy, life sciences and media.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"It's excellent, we're very pleased with them. They were forthcoming on everything we asked them for advice on." 

"I find them very approachable. They're very skilled in terms of what they do. They were efficient and on top of things."

Work highlights Represented SyQic on its £14.4 million AIM IPO.

Advised Blinx on a USD64 million secondary placing.

Notable practitioners  

Simon Allport has a broad capital markets and M&A practice, and recently advised Darwin Strategic on the provision of a £5 million equity finance facility to Edenville Energy. One source notes: "He really likes to get stuck in. He works very hard and provides a good service for his clients."

Significant clients Cairn Financial Advisers, Earthport, Investec, Mood Media, Proxama.

Commercial Contracts - UK-wide

What the team is known for Excellent client roster covers areas such as finance, telecommunications and manufacturing. Notable breadth of experience, advising on matters including supply arrangements and marketing and distribution agreements.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Their performance is excellent, more a partner than an independent consultant. They are very pragmatic and commercial, and they understand our needs."

Work highlights Advised Tempur-Sealy on restructuring and standardising its international distribution and franchise network.

Advised Lorillard on issues including manufacturing and distribution agreements following its acquisition of an e-cigarettes company.

Notable practitioners

Simon Shooter heads the international commercial group and is a key contact.

Significant clients Ministry of Justice, Codemasters, Department of Energy & Climate Change, King's College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, BAE Systems.

Data Protection - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 1 partner
- 1 consultant
- 7 other qualified lawyers
- Recommended office locations: London

What the team is known for A market leader in data protection issues surrounding cutting-edge technology. Additional strengths in high-profile security breaches, binding corporate rules (BCRs), data transfers and compliance. Provides well-recognised multinational and sector-specific expertise.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They have very practical and helpful advice. They're very timely – they follow a schedule, are responsive to our requests and are just very smart and easy to deal with."

"Always to the point, with specific, direct advice, and good at using other offices through Europe so I don't have to individually develop local relations."

"Tremendous throughout Europe." 

Notable practitioners  

Ruth Boardman advises major clients on cutting-edge data protection work. One client enthuses: "Ruth Boardman is really outstanding at client management and incredibly intelligent, and she provides very commercial solutions. She's always up to speed on case law and legislation, and can give a good sense of the law on a particular topic in any jurisdiction."

Consultant Francis Aldhouse is a former UK Deputy Information Commissioner and a well-known figure in the market. He has particular expertise in European and international data protection issues.

Significant clients Adobe, EE, Richemont, Level 3 Communications.

Employee Share Schemes & Incentives - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 1 partner
- 2 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Adept at both advisory and transactional share scheme mandates, particularly those with an international aspect. The team specialises in servicing technology sector clients.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They were very easy to communicate with and very practical in the sense of relating to non-legal people in an understandable way."

"As a smaller company, I still got very effective support in the resolution of complex issues."

Work highlights Assisted Alpha Financial Markets Consulting with the complex, cross-border share scheme implications of its management acquisition, valued at £28 million.

Advised By the Bridge Holdings on the drafting and implementation of bespoke incentive arrangements for its senior employees.

Notable practitioners  

Colin Kendon frequently acts as the lead partner on bespoke and international mandates, and is well regarded for his technical expertise and depth of knowledge. One source noted: "He has a deep understanding of all the issues and is very clear about what he does not know. If that happens he will research and come back with a well thought-out response."

Significant clients Just Eat, Virtual Instruments, Oxis Energy, Reeves & Co, AB Hotels.

Energy & Natural Resources - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 12 partners
- 32 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Renewable energy practice which focuses on corporate transactions and development advice. Clients include developers, renewable energy funds and investors. Active advising in connection with wind, solar and hydro power deals in the UK and overseas.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients) 

"Not only is the legal advice of a good calibre, they are also providing a lot of value-added services which we find very useful."

"They are very knowledgeable, they are pretty fast to react and very willing to push the boundaries."

Work highlights Acted for Bluefield Partners, through the Bluefield Solar Income Fund, in a number of UK solar transactions.

Advised PS Renewables on the sale of its UK solar portfolio.

Notable practitioners

Matt Bonass is a key contact. 

Significant clients RWE npower, Goldbeck Solar, UK Power Networks, TGC Renewables, Department of Energy & Climate Change.  

Franchising - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 5 partners
- 8 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Outstanding team involved in a number of the most valuable and prominent franchising matters in the UK. It has a global reach and offers expertise in a range of sectors, including the food and beverage and leisure industries.  

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They've done some international franchise work for us and I have found them to be extremely good."

What's new? New clients include LighterLife, Wellington College and Hawksmoor. 

Work highlights Advised the Tragus Group on its global enlargement plan to open new Café Rouge franchises in the UAE.

Acted for Tempur-Sealy on the post-acquisition restructuring of its global franchising framework.

Notable practitioners  

Mark Abell is adept at enabling businesses to set up franchises domestically and abroad. He is highly regarded by the market and widely considered one of the standout practitioners in the field. Interviewees say he is "brilliant – incredibly experienced in his field, in both the legal and commercial aspects. He is also a good communicator and can explain things in a clear and understandable way. He has a real passion for what he does, a real zest."

Victoria Hobbs is known for representing retail, hotel and leisure clients wishing to increase their global presence. Her practice focuses on disputes relating to franchise agreements.

Graeme Payne has a healthy practice advising leading brands on how to expand their business through franchising. He is "very good," said one interviewee; "I would recommend him without a shadow of a doubt."

Significant clients Domino's Pizza, The Dwyer Group, YO! Sushi, Brighton College, EE.

Fraud - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 9 partners
- 25 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Advises claimants and defendants on international fraud litigation and asset recovery. Offers broad sector expertise.

Work highlights Acted for the estate of Christo Michailidis on a USD20 million dispute with Crédit Agricole involving allegations of money laundering.

Notable practitioners  

Sophie Eyre is head of the fraud group. She has experience in multi-jurisdictional asset tracing claims and is praised for being "absolutely meticulous in her preparation."

Ludovic de Walden has a particular interest in art and acting for galleries, museums, collectors and dealers in fraud disputes and asset recovery.

Significant clients Karadeniz Powerships, Unicorn Worldwide Holdings.

Healthcare - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 30 partners
- 30 associates
- Recommended office locations: London

What the team is known for Brings its expertise in technology and communications to the healthcare sector, regularly advising clients on IT transformation projects, M&A, outsourcing and data protection. Sought after by healthcare clients for its international capabilities. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"What they bring is very specific expertise in large public sector IT programmes."

"They are responsive and take their time to understand the client's agenda."

Notable practitioners The team is led by Ian Edwards.

Significant clients King's College Hospital NHS FT, Computer Sciences. 

Life Sciences - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 16 partners
- 16 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Unquestionably one of the most comprehensive and sophisticated life sciences practices in the market, with expertise in patent litigation, healthcare regulation and also commercial transactions within the sector.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Bird & Bird has a Rolls-Royce litigation service."

"They know the sector well." 

Work highlights Won a ruling from the Court of Appeal on behalf of Actavis that proceedings for declaration of non-infringement across European jurisdictions can be heard in English courts.

Advised Teva on a collaboration and licence agreement with Medincell, a leading developer of controlled release formulations.

Notable practitioners  

Sally Shorthose is well known in the sector for her work on collaboration and licence agreements, and also advises on data exclusivity and other regulatory matters. Sources attest that she "clearly knows her stuff."

Morag Macdonald is "hugely experienced in patent litigation," according to sources, and devotes much of her time to complex and high-value biotech and pharmaceutical patent disputes.

Robert Williams is a noted patent litigator within the sector. He is described as a "delight to work with" and "has the confidence and manner that sometimes comes with long experience and transmits itself to clients."

Significant clients Allergan, Baxter, ConvaTec, Mylan, Sanofi.

Media & Entertainment - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 12 partners
- 16 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Bastions of the IP and TMT areas, demonstrating strength across the gaming, television and advertising sectors. Particularly proficient in online and digital content concerns. Valued for its ability to utilise the firm's network of offices across Europe.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They're very commercial for a law firm. They're open to understanding our aims in terms of what we need to do and reaching that point."

"They were totally on top of our needs, feeding through specialist partners as and when needed."

What's new? New clients include Gamesys Group and Wasserman Media Group.

Work highlights Acted for Global Repertoire Database on an innovative project to create an online musical works database, from setting up the corporate structure to advising on music and database rights.

Represented The Football Association in the sale of its domestic media rights to England and FA Cup matches to BT Sport, News UK, ITV and BBC.

Notable practitioners  

Howard Rubin continues to be a leader in the video games industry, working extensively with clients such as Codemasters. Market observers revere him as being "very calm, very collected and very able."

The "brilliant" Phil Sherrell is highly regarded for his digital music and publishing expertise. Clients appreciate that he is "pragmatic, responsive and sensible to work with." Recent work includes advising Exposure Promotions on a series of celebrity endorsement agreements.

Felicity Reeve maintains a strong advertising and marketing practice, with a focus on the sports sector. She has advised long-standing client Whitbread Group on a wide range of work, including an endorsement agreement with Lenny Henry and sponsorship of the Rapha Condor cycling team.

Significant clients Associated Newspapers, UK Media Monitoring Association, Yahoo!, We R Interactive, Exposure Promotions.

Outsourcing - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 24 partners
- 85 other qualified lawyers
- Office locations ranked: London

What the team is known for A long established presence in the outsourcing field, with particular strength in IT and communications. Also noted for its experience with respect to the public sector, handling a number of UK government outsourcing transactions.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"A first-rate service from bright, articulate lawyers. They provide pragmatic, commercially minded and solution-focused approaches."

"They are very responsive to our support needs on long-term contracts."

Work highlights Advised the Department of Energy & Climate Change on the procurement of high-value technology contracts in connection with the Smart Meter Implementation Programme.

Supported the Ministry of Justice in large scale multi-contract technology procurements.

Notable practitioners  

Dominic Cook is widely acknowledged for his broad outsourcing expertise, with particular experience in the healthcare and telecoms sectors. His recent work includes the renegotiation of contracts for the supply of IT services to the NHS.

The highly experienced Roger Bickerstaff is joint head of the firm's international IT sector group and is widely noted for his outsourcing and public sector procurement expertise. Interviewees regard him as "a veteran who knows everyone in the sector, particularly when it comes to outsourcing."

Head of the international outsourcing group Mark Leach is regarded by one interviewee as a "very clear thinker who is very calm under pressure." He acts for buyer and supplier side clients and has extensive experience in transactions pertaining to the public sector. 

Simon Shooter is "very knowledgeable and responsive in international work," say sources. He has handled complex IT outsourcing transactions across a range of sectors, including engineering, healthcare and financial services.

The "absolutely excellent" Christian Bartsch is recognised by observers for his "incredibly impressive understanding of what the client wants." He advises clients in connection with BPOs and ITOs, and is experienced in matters pertaining to the Indian outsourcing market.

Ian Edwards is hailed by interviewees as "a quality lawyer in the outsourcing field." He recently brought his technology outsourcing experience to bear in the smart metering field for the Department of Energy & Climate Change, with market observers regarding his contributions as "impressive."

Significant clients Adecco, BAE Systems, BT, Bupa, Man Group.

Private Equity - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 18 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Leading name in the venture capital space, with a superb track record for guiding start-ups through their early investment rounds. Able to utilise the firm's excellent intellectual property and technology expertise when advising clients.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"I think we get a very well-engineered project with a lot of control and attention to detail."

"They've been great on client service. They've always been available." 

Work highlights Acted for Index Ventures on its USD17.5 million B-round financing of Swiftkey.

Advised Albion Ventures on its £9.3 million investment into a Scottish Highlands hydropower scheme.

Notable practitioners

The "exceptional" Angus Miln is highly rated by sources for his "exquisite attention to detail" and "really sound commercial judgement." Venture capital work forms a substantial part of his practice.

Struan Penwarden "always has a pragmatic solution to problems" and is "so experienced and calm" when it comes to venture capital transactions, say sources. Of late, he has acted on a number of multimillion-pound investments.

Geraint Lloyd is a highly experienced member of the venture capital team, with over 30 years of experience in transactional matters. He is "technically really solid," according to one source.

Significant clients Kreos Capital, OpenX Software, Just-Eat, Sensus, Accel Partners.

Public Procurement - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 10 partners
- 20 other qualified lawyers
- Recommended office locations: London 

What the team is known for Frequently acts on significant IT procurement matters, advising both tendering authorities and bidders. Also active in procurement disputes.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Very thorough and conscientious lawyers." 

Work highlights Advised the Department of Energy & Climate Change on IT and communication infrastructure procurement for its roll-out of smart gas and electricity meters nationwide.

Acted for engineering company Keltbray on its bid for the redevelopment of Purfleet town centre.

Notable practitioners 

Roger Bickerstaff recently advised BT on procurement issues relating to the Broadband Delivery UK rural broadband framework agreement. Sources particularly note his strong reputation on public sector IT matters.

Significant clients BIS, Environment Agency, Associated News, The National Archives, Ofsted.

Sports Law - UK-wide

What the team is known for A wide-ranging commercial and regulatory practice covering both contentious and non-contentious work. Its client base includes some of the largest sports governing bodies as well as high-profile clubs, sponsors and broadcasters. The firm also has extensive experience in acting for clients in relation to integrity issues in sport, such as doping and match fixing.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"The quality of advice is top-class. We feel extremely comfortable in any guidance we receive from them and they've always managed to reach agreement with other parties."

"They are the best rounded practice in terms of commercial and regulatory expertise. They stand head and shoulders above the other firms."

"A first-rate practice with a great reputation."  

Work highlights Acted for the International Cricket Council's Anti-Corruption and Security Unit and the Bangladesh Cricket Board against participants in the Bangladesh Premier League in relation to breaches of the BCB's Anti-Corruption Code.  

Acted for the British and Irish Lions on the team's tour to Australia, which included drawing up staging agreements, player and tour party contracts, and negotiating broadcasting and sponsorship rights.

Notable practitioners  

Max Duthie handles a wide range of contentious and regulatory work. He is highly regarded for his expertise in rugby matters, and acted for European Rugby Cup (ERC) on updating its rules and regulations, and on disciplinary issues. One source said: "He was superb; he prepares and handles a case exceptionally well. He is polite and courteous, and clients have a huge degree of confidence in him because he puts them at ease. A top man."

Jonathan Taylor is "head and shoulders above everyone," according to sources. He is highly regarded by clients and peers for his expertise on anti-corruption, anti-doping and a wide range of regulatory matters. Clients include governing bodies and event organisers such as the ICC and World Anti-Doping Agency. One source said: "He's an absolutely trusted person, very able, a good thinker and highly regarded."

Felicity Reeve has a wealth of experience in handling commercial matters including media rights and sponsorship files for clients. She was the lead lawyer acting for Allianz on its sponsorship renewal for Formula 1. She is described as an "excellent lawyer."

Jamie Herbert acts for governing bodies, individuals and tournament organisers on anti-doping, anti-corruption and other regulatory matters. He acted on the aforementioned corruption matter in the Bangladesh Premier League.

Craig Giles is heavily involved in commercial sport matters such as sponsorship, media rights agreements and licensing matters. He was one of the lawyers involved in assisting the FA with the exploitation of commercial rights.

Elizabeth Riley is described as "an impressive advocate who is doing a lot of good-quality work." She predominantly acts on disciplinary, corruption and anti-doping matters.

Significant clients Arsenal Football Club, ERC, International Tennis Federation, Six Nations Rugby, World Anti-Doping Agency.

Telecommunications - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 30 partners
- 45 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for A multidisciplinary practice with a long-standing reputation in the telecoms field. Particularly noted for its capabilities in handling commercial arrangements and sector-related disputes.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They're the gold standard for an international technology business."

"Very responsive, very down to earth. There's no clear line where we end and they begin."

Work highlights Advised the Department for Energy & Climate Change on tender process for, and subsequent negotiation of, procurement contracts related to the nationwide smart metering programme. The cumulative value of the negotiated contracts exceeds £2 billion.

Advised Liquid Telecommunications in its USD50 million acquisition of African subsidiaries of Altech.

Notable practitioners  

Graeme Maguire is identified for his long-standing expertise in international telecommunications. Recent highlights include acting for an international private capital group on the growth financing of a network operator.

A veteran in the field, Colin Long is described as "the author of telecoms law in the UK." He continues to advise clients on telecommunications issues in emerging markets.

Allan Sanderson offers depth of expertise in telecoms disputes, as well as significant experience in IT and general commercial disputes.

Ronald Hendrikx recently took the lead in the firm's representation of the Department for Energy & Climate Change in respect of the national smart metering programme. One source said: "His excellence on contract law plus his knowledge of telecoms is a very powerful combination."

Joanne Wheeler is widely acknowledged for her work on satellite-related matters. She recently advised the UK government on its innovation and growth strategy for space business. Sources have "no doubt that she's one of the top people for space law," describing her as "an absolute authority on all regulation" in the area. She joined Bird & Bird from CMS in 2014.

Significant clients Nokia, BT, EE, Airwave, Department of Energy & Climate Change.

Travel - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 4 partners
- 3 barristers
- 8 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Strong aviation team. Advises on all aspects of regulatory and commercial travel litigation. Acts for clients on commercial, regulatory, contentious and corporate matters. Regularly advises leading airlines and travel companies.

Work highlights Defended Monarch in an £11 million claim by Olympic Holidays regarding seasonal seat charters from contracts over a ten-year period.

Instructed to act for Jet2.com in a significant Court of Appeal case concerning claims for compensation for flight delays. 

Notable practitioners  

Peers regard Simon Chamberlain as "authoritative" and "very savvy." He is highly regarded for his expertise in contentious and non-contentious commercial cases.

Robin Springthorpe "has a very commercial approach and gets a robust solution," according to clients. He is experienced in Air Travel Organisers' Licensing (ATOL) and package travel regulations as well as commercial disputes.

Significant clients STA, Virgin, Bookable Holidays, Unister, TravCo.