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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (UK) LLP


Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP & Affiliates - New York
  • 40 Bank Street
  • Canary Wharf
  • London
  • Greater London
  • UK
  • E14 5DS
  • Executive Partner Eric J Friedman
  • London Office Head Pranav Trivedi
  • Number of lawyers - London 125
  • Number of lawyers - Europe 200

THE FIRM With offices in London, Paris, Moscow, Brussels, Frankfurt and Munich, Skadden has successfully developed an integrated European practice that handles substantial cross-border and domestic matters.

Mergers & Acquisitions: Skadden is one of the most successful firms to have established a single global platform combining US and local law capability around the world. The firm’s London office is staffed with English and American partners and acts as an international hub powering multi-jurisdictional transactions. In London, the firm advises on traditional UK and US public M&A transactions and handles the English law aspects on any international deal, offering a unique mix of US and English law advice. London works with the firm’s network of 23 offices around the world in other major financial centres.
Private Equity: Skadden advises private equity firms on the structuring and execution of large, crossborder and domestic private equity transactions, including the purchase and sale of portfolio companies. The firm combines leading transactional experience with sophisticated financing and tax techniques in relation to a range of matters including leveraged buyouts, management buyouts and recapitalisations.
Investment Management: Skadden’s European Investment Management Group services a wide range of private capital and asset management clients, including: private equity fund houses, hedge fund managers, high-net-worth investors, in-house asset management teams at financial institutions, family offices, SIVs, ABCPs and other shadow banks, private trading companies and sovereign investors.
Capital Markets: The Capital Markets Group advises corporate, governmental and investment banking clients on a variety of capital markets transactions, including rights offerings, IPOs, eurobonds, high-yield financings and other global equity, equity-linked and debt offerings.
Banking: The European Banking Group comprises experienced finance lawyers familiar with all aspects of leveraged finance, project finance and other banking products as well as restructurings (stressed and voluntary). The practice is headquartered in the London office where the team advises on English banking law matters in all countries across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. The firm also provides specialist local law financing advice through its offices in Paris, Frankfurt, Munich and Moscow.
Corporate Restructuring: The European Corporate Restructuring Group advises enterprises in crossborder out-of-court restructurings and pre-negotiated plans of reorganisation, and judicial insolvency restructuring transactions and bankruptcy proceedings.
International Arbitration / Litigation: The European International Arbitration and Litigation Group provides legal advice and representation on international commercial disputes for multinational companies and major institutions, particularly in the commercial, energy, telecoms and financial services fields, including arbitrations under bilateral investment treaties, ICC, LCIA and UNCITRAL rules, and under the auspices of all the major international arbitration institutions.
Corporate Investigations: The Corporate Investigations practice provides advice to corporations and individuals involved in cross-border regulatory investigations and disputes. The practice combines an on-theground presence in Europe with Skadden’s global experience in government investigations, enforcement actions and internal investigations. The firm brings an integrated approach advising on matters of US and English law, including practical steps for implementation of adequate procedures under the UK Bribery Act 2010.
Energy Transactions: The Energy Group provides comprehensive assistance on complex energy transactions, representing clients in a broad array of energy matters, including petroleum exploration; production and infrastructure investments; utility and petro-chemical sector privatisations; large-scale power plant, pipeline and refinery developments; mergers, acquisitions and corporate financings involving energy companies; and non or limited-recourse financings for capital intensive energy projects.
Tax: Skadden offers tax advice across the range of corporate and financing transactions. In addition to providing tax advice within particular jurisdictions, its lawyers have considerable experience in strategic tax planning and tax implementation issues associated with multi-jurisdictional, cross-border transactions. The firm also has a well-respected Tax Controversy practice, providing clients with technical and tactical advice to ensure tax disputes are resolved as effectively as possible.
Labour & Employment: Skadden’s London Labour and Employment practice advises businesses and senior executives on a wide range of employment matters. The firm frequently advises on employment issues that arise in corporate transactions, as well as on labour relations, including collective bargaining and industrial disputes, the introduction and implementation of workplace policies and contracts, UK employment laws, corporate governance, data privacy and business protection.
European Union & International Competition: The EU and International Competition practice represents clients on a full range of competition law issues raised in the context of multi-jurisdictional M&A and other transaction structures, investigations of cartels, abuses of dominant positions and other anticompetitive conduct issues.

CLIENTS Skadden represents a broad spectrum of clients, including Europe’s largest companies, financial and government entities, private and start-up companies, and cultural and educational organisations.

INTERNATIONAL Skadden has approximately 1,600 lawyers advising in over 40 practice areas in 23 offices on five continents.


  • 40 Bank Street,
  • Canary Wharf,
  • London,
  • Greater London
  • UK
  • E14 5DS
  • Tel (020) 7519 7000
  • Fax (020) 7519 7070
  • Website : www.skadden.com

Banking & Finance - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Caters to an impressive and varied clientele, including sponsors and lenders. Serves as the core of the firm's European finance offering. Frequently called upon to handle bespoke deals for new and existing clients. Strong reputation for leveraged finance, especially on a multi-jurisdictional basis.  

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Very pleased with them. They are very professional, very easy to communicate with and very pragmatic. They are very deal and goal-oriented, and they deliver on time." 

"I like the expertise, the support and responsiveness of the people."  

Work highlights Represented Joh. A. Benckiser in EUR3.3 billion of financing used to partially fund its EUR9.8 billion acquisition of global coffee company D.E. Master Blenders.

Acted for Altimo Holdings & Investments on a USD3.25 billion loan, used to finance its tender offer for a 49% stake in Orascom Telecom Holdings.

Notable practitioners  

Clive Wells is picked out by one client as a "technically excellent lawyer who really understands the commercial needs of clients." He assisted the SIBUR Group with its refinance, arranged by way of a USD1.9 billion loan facility from Gazprombank.

Global co-head of banking Mark Darley is "very experienced and also very deal-oriented - he can pick up the relevant issues in a fairly complex situation." He advised the borrower, VTTI, on a credit facility provided in order to refinance its existing debt.

Pete Coulton was responsible for the banking aspects of the high-yield bond offering by Avanza, made in connection with its refinancing. He has a depth of experience in leveraged finance and also handles many restructuring transactions.

Significant clients Doughty Hanson, Ares Life Sciences, Helios Investment Partners, Nafta Moskva, J.W. Childs Associates.

Capital Markets - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Accomplished capital markets practice primarily acting on the issuer side. Skilled in complex and multi-jurisdictional DCM, ECM and high-yield matters, with areas of strength including IPOs, rights offerings and convertible bonds. Clients commend the team on its expertise in work involving Russia.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They all have great technical expertise, are always ready to help, are responsive, and if we need something outside the usual scope they deliver it." 

"They're very competent, have good knowledge of the market, and have efficient leverage on their US network."

Work highlights Advised Nokia on a bond financing related to the sale of its devices and services business to Microsoft.

Advised HellermannTyton Group on its £420 million IPO.

Represented Avanza Grupo in a EUR490 million high-yield bond offering.

Notable practitioners  

Pranav Trivedi is well regarded for his capital markets practice, which spans both DCM and ECM work. Recently, he acted for the joint bookrunning managers regarding the USD70 million IPO of Luxoft. A client states: "He has shown a high level of responsiveness, dedication and engagement on all the transactions we have worked on together."

James Healy offers clients expertise in DCM and ECM, with particular knowledge of matters pertaining to Italy, Portugal and Egypt. He recently advised HellermannTyton Group on its £420 million IPO.

Danny Tricot, head of the firm's European corporate finance practice, is notable for his skill in ECM matters, recently advising on the recapitalisation of Alpha Bank. Sources regard him as a lawyer who is "positive, non-adversarial and can get a deal done." 

Significant clients TMF Group, Citi, Zobele Holding, Eurasia Drilling, Goldman Sachs.

Corporate/M&A - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Continues its reputation as one of the top US firms, with a global platform to match. Its high-class bench is able to muster decades of experience to take on some of the biggest deals in the market.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They're particularly good at being able to synthesise a US and UK perspective."

"Very good for high-end cross-border work." 

Work highlights Acted for Alfa-Access-Renova on the USD28 billion disposal of its interest in the TNK-BP joint venture to Rosneft.

Represented Mylan in its purchase of Agila Specialities from Strides Arcolab for USD1.6 billion.

Notable practitioners  

The "outstanding" Michael Hatchard is a "great voice of reason and insight on deals," which makes it "hard to rate him any higher." He brought his extensive experience to bear for NASDAQ OMX in its purchase of an interest in LCH.Clearnet Group.

US-qualified Scott Simpson is a "phenomenal adviser" known for his "visionary strategic thinking." Recently, he advised Outokumpu in its divestment of two businesses to Acciai Speciali Terni.

Michal Berkner is a "very talented lawyer" who is "very intelligent, tireless and very diligent," and displays "absolute devotion to the client and the deal." She regularly leads on cross-border transactions, with a focus on the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) region.

Lorenzo Corte is a "very attentive, very good negotiator" who acts on a range of transactional matters. Among his recent major deals was for Generali in its USD3.3 billion purchase of a 49% interest in Generali PPF Holding.

Shaun Lascelles is regularly sighted on corporate and private equity transactions. Among his client relationships is with BlackRock, for whom he acted on its acquisition of Credit Suisse's exchange-traded funds arm.

Scott Hopkins is recognised as a capable transactional lawyer, with sources calling him "very able and very conscientious." He was one of the key lawyers acting for Pfizer on its proposed £69.4 billion offer for AstraZeneca.

Significant clients Altimo Holdings & Investments, BlackRock, Central European Distribution Company, Nike, Outokumpu.

Financial Crime - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Handles complex investigations for major financial institutions and multinational corporates. Well placed to advise on transatlantic matters.

Work highlights Advised a major financial institution on a multi-jurisdictional investigation into trading activities within the foreign exchange market.

Acted for a European aerospace and defence company subject to government investigations arising from allegations of bribery in Asia.

Notable practitioners  

Sources characterise Gary DiBianco as "thoughtful, clear and strategic." He is US-qualified and has extensive experience in FCPA matters.

Ex-SFO prosecutor Matthew Cowie has a wealth of experience of the financial crime arena. Peers attest that "he's thorough, rounded, and would be an adornment to any corporate crime team."

Litigation - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Top-flight arbitration firm with a growing reputation for high-end commercial litigation. Particularly noted for the high-profile international and cross-border cases it has been instructed on in recent years.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

“An international firm with high-quality individuals.”  

“They have some heavyweight litigation.” 

Work highlights Acted for Gennadiy Bogolyubov on the high-profile dispute with Victor Pinchuk over the ownership of an iron ore company.

Advised the government of South Sudan on the recovery of valuable oil cargoes misappropriated by the government of the Republic of Sudan.

Notable practitioners  

Karyl Nairn QC serves as global co-head of the firm's litigation and arbitration group. Her practice focuses on international arbitration, post-acquisition disputes and shareholder litigation. She recently acted for Tate & Lyle Industries and T&L Sugars on the defence of a claim brought by 200 Cambodian villagers over sugar produced on land that was allegedly expropriated by the Cambodian government or a Thai sugar company.

Significant clients Anheuser-Busch InBev, Saltend Co-generation, Crédit Agricole, AP Holdings, AAR.

Public International Law - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Offers high-quality counsel on state-to-state and investment treaty matters, supported by an eminent international arbitration practice. Specific strength in ICSID cases and further experience in EU human rights. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They can always find the resources to reach solutions, making them a one-stop shop for clients, and they make it easier to keep issues in a diplomatic atmosphere, allowing for measured responses."

Work highlights Advised the Republic of South Sudan on its first ICSID case, a damages claim brought by Sudapet, Sudan's national oil company, which involves the question of whether Sudapet-held oil field stakes are state property and therefore belong to South Sudan post-secession.

Assisted Devas Multimedia with an application for ICC arbitration proceedings against Indian government-owned Antrix in connection with contractual matters surrounding Devas's supply of various digital, terrestrial and telecommunications services.

Notable practitioners  

David Herlihy is acknowledged for his excellent track record in high-profile cases and ability to "command the knowledge of the entire case." He undertakes high-value BIT arbitrations, as well as significant cases in the oil and gas sector and ECT-related matters. 

Significant clients Global Telecom, Republic of Cyprus, Bidzina Ivanishvili.

Restructuring/Insolvency - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Experienced and talented bench able to leverage off the firm's impressive global footprint. Recognised for its good track record in financial services restructurings.

Work highlights Acted on the significant out-of-court restructuring of Travelport, including extending the maturity of a major tranche of senior notes, a debt-for-equity exchange, and settling a litigation relating to a previous restructuring.

Acting for Better Place on the winding down of its global operation and its Chapter 15 filing in the USA.

Notable practitioners  

Chris Mallon is the well-respected head of the firm's European corporate restructuring practice, and is well recognised in the market as an experienced and canny practitioner. He has significant experience of acting in multi-jurisdictional restructurings and insolvencies.

Dominic McCahill primarily advises on cross-border corporate restructurings, specialising in the representation of hedge funds, banks and private equity investors. He has advised Grant Thornton on its role in the liquidation of a number of offshore companies involved in Tchenguiz Brothers trusts.

Significant clients Warwick Capital Partners, Kaupthing Bank, Excel Maritime Carriers, Exide Technologies, Seat Pagine Gialle S.p.A.

Tax - London (Firms)

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

What the team is known for Notable capacity to service the tax needs of national and international clients involved in significant cross-border transactions. Attracts clients from a range of sectors, including financial services and insurance. Matters typically include private equity work, M&A deals and funds work.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"We like the availability, responsiveness, commercial awareness, and ability to think through complex, multi-dimensional problems. Written advice is also markedly better than that received from other professional service firms."

"Technically I think their lawyers are excellent. I think they have a great tax practice."

Work highlights Acted for power generation company InterGen on its USD1.8 billion refinancing of debt and credit facilities.

Advised Mylan on the acquisition from Strides Acrolab of Agila Specialities. 

Notable practitioners 

Clients appreciate that James Anderson "is dogged about keeping his clients informed of the latest developments that he thinks may affect them." A market commentator adds: "He is an amazing lawyer. He is terrifically interested in tax in a way you don't find with a lot of lawyers these days. He is genuinely enthusiastic; he doesn't learn just what he needs to for his practice."

Peers highlight Tim Sanders as "a very good guy. He is commercial and co-operative, and clever. He is experienced." He leads the firm's tax department in London.

Significant clients The Bank of New York Mellon, UNIQA, BlackRock, Barclays, Aviva Investors.

Energy & Natural Resources - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for Acts for energy companies and governments in a wide variety of oil and gas matters. Advises throughout the oil and gas supply chain in relation to M&A, commercial agreements, disputes and financing.

Work highlights Advised Vitol Group and Helios Investment Partners on their acquisition of much of Shell's African downstream oil and gas business.

Acted for a consortium on the sale of 30% of a licence in the Leviathan offshore gas field to Woodside Energy. 

Notable practitioners  

Karyl Nairn is a highly regarded commercial litigation and arbitration specialist. She has a great deal of experience acting for clients in energy disputes. Sources describe her as a "phenomenal arbitration lawyer."

David Kavanagh has acted in major energy arbitration and cross-border disputes on behalf of energy companies and national governments. Sources describe him as a "class act."

Douglas Nordlinger has a broad oil and gas practice which includes advising on corporate, project finance and commercial matters. He advised the government of South Sudan on oil and gas issues following its secession from the Republic of Sudan. Sources say: "He knows energy inside-out."

Significant clients Noble Energy, Alfa-Access-Renova, InterGen, the Republic of South Sudan.

International Arbitration - UK-wide

Basic facts about the department
- 5 partners
- 1 counsel
- 24 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Standout practice regularly handling cutting-edge arbitrations. Receives instructions from key clients in the telecoms, pharmaceutical and renewable energy sectors. Fields extensive global strength and a notable bench of dual-qualified and bilingual individuals. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"The firm is very efficient, dynamic and professional. We easily place Skadden at the top of the list. We shall certainly use them again."

"They can always find the resources, material or human, to find solutions for their clients. That makes them a one-stop shop."

Work highlights Advised the Republic of South Sudan on an ICSID arbitration brought against it by Sudapet, the Republic of Sudan's state-owned oil company.

Instructed by the AAR consortium on its attempt to block the formation of a strategic alliance between BP and Rosneft. Obtained an emergency injunction blocking the deal in the London High Court, followed by an award from an arbitration tribunal confirming that the deal was prohibited.

Notable practitioners

Karyl Nairn QC is firmly established as one of the leading lights of international arbitration, with expert experience in commercial and investment treaty disputes. Her handling of multibillion-dollar matters no doubt contributes to her "exceptional knowledge and command of the subject."

David Kavanagh is recognised by sources as an "impressive individual who gives clients a lot of confidence" and shows a real dedication to international arbitration. He is particularly noted for his investment treaty expertise, and has recently led on several high-value ICSID and UNCITRAL disputes.

David Herlihy is dual-qualified in New York and England, and is increasingly recognised on the international stage, working recently on high-profile matters concerning both South Sudan and Georgia. He is an "outstanding talent" who "commands the knowledge of the entire case, whilst managing everything."

Bruce Macaulay regularly handles major multibillion-dollar arbitrations, including representing the Republic of Cyprus in a significant BIT dispute. Sources highlight his ability to "quickly grasp specialised issues," noting that "he is very, very effective" and "creative in dealing with difficult matters." 

Patrick Heneghan draws on deep experience in handling international disputes and has recently secured favourable results for major clients in the pharmaceutical market. He is recognised as a "quality individual," a view endorsed by his recent success in challenging an arbitration award in the English High Court.

Significant clients Global Telecom Holding, Devas, CEMEX, Pfizer, Gambrinus.

Investment Funds - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for A popular choice for international asset management clients, thanks to its close connection with the firm's broad geographic network. Handles complex mandates for private equity houses, hedge fund managers and investor clients such as sovereign wealth funds. Also acts on funds-related M&A and secondary acquisitions. Established in-house tax planning capability adds value for clients.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"Clearly very strong; it is a well-known US brand." 

What's new? New client wins for the team include Probitas Partners, Crosstree Real Estate Partners and GP Investimentos.

Work highlights Represented BlackRock throughout its purchase of the exchange-traded funds division of Credit Suisse.

Assisted UNIQA Insurance Group in its disposal of USD540 million worth of private equity fund interests.  

Notable practitioners  

Stephen Sims advised Graphite Enterprise Trust on a series of investments into private equity funds. Commentators characterise him as a "very good operator; he is highly commercial, very good to have on the other side. He spots issues and deals with them in a very commercial manner."

Significant clients Gordian Knot, Fortress, GSA Capital, GP Investimentos, JLL Partners.  

Private Equity - UK-wide

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

What the team is known for A well-known name in the market, which continues to work on a range of deals for a number of top clients. Provides a full-service offering, utilising the extensive resources of the wider firm.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They are incredibly responsive, they work hard and they know what it means to serve sophisticated clients who understand the issues. They're professional in what they produce and are pretty commercial."

Work highlights Assisted Doughty Hanson & Co with its major disposal of Vue Entertainment to AIMCo and OMERS Private Equity for a total USD1.4 billion.

Acted for Excelitas Technologies in its acquisition of Qioptiq for an undisclosed sum from Arle2 Capital Partners.

Notable practitioners  

Shaun Lascelles is a corporate and private equity lawyer, known in the market as "exceedingly well prepared as well as incredibly polished and professional." He is a busy figure in the market and recently acted for BlackRock on its purchase of MGPA from Macquarie.

Significant clients BTG Pactual, Zobele Holding, Helios Investment Partners, Avanza Grupo SA, JW Childs Associates.