Slaughter and May is top takeover lawyer

Slaughter and May has retained its title as leading legal adviser on British public takeovers for the first half of this year, according to Acquisitions Monthly. It advised on 12 deals worth a total of pounds 12.7bn, ahead of second-placed Freshfields' 11 deals totalling pounds 11.2bn.

The firm, which also topped the table for the whole of last year, was boosted by advising Wellcome when it was acquired by Glaxo for pounds 9.15bn in Britain's largest public deal. Slaughter also defended Northern Electric against Trafalgar House's pounds 1.15bn attempted takeover.

Although the rankings have been distorted by the Glaxo-Wellcome deal, Philip Healey, editor of Acquisitions Monthly, points out that this year's trend is towards a substantial increase in the number of UK deals and their value.

For example, Freshfields' 11 deals equalled its total for the whole of 1994, while Allen & Overy's five deals put it ahead of its 1994 total of three. Moreover, the pounds 1.39bn total value of eighth-placed Allen & Overy's deals would have put it in second place at the halfway stage last year.

"Such activity augurs well for the mergers and acquisitions sector for the rest of the year and hopefully beyond, even though this is not likely to mean that the heady days of the late 1980s are about to return," Mr Healey said.

Indeed, the top two firms have got the second half off to a strong start by appearing in opposite sides of the pounds 977m takeover of Kleinwort Benson by Germany's Dresdner Bank, while Freshfields is advising Scottish Power in its pounds 1bn bid for Manweb, whose lawyers are Clifford Chance.

The Glaxo-Wellcome deal was the key to the top five positions in the table of advisers acting both for financial advisers and the companies themselves during the six months to the end of June.

Freshfields and Herbert Smith, which retained their second and third places from the full 1994 table, worked for the financial advisers of Glaxo and Wellcome, while Clifford Chance, which moved up from fifth to fourth, acted for Glaxo. Lovell White Durrant, which climbed from ninth in 1994 to fifth, represented Wellcome Trust, which held nearly 40 per cent of Wellcome.

One surprise entry to the list is Walker Morris, a Leeds-based firm which continues the recent trend for regional firms to pick up the occasional corporate appointment at the expense of City practices. Past entrants include Hammond Suddards and Dibb Lupton Broomhead, which are also based in Leeds.

Walker Morris's ninth position after not ranking last year is largely on the back of advising the Dewsbury-based paints group Kalon on the acquisition of Euridep from the French oil group Total. The pounds 530m deal - part of a series of transactions worth nearly pounds 570m - is said to be the largest to be handled by a law firm outside the City.

On the other hand, many observers will be surprised at the continued poor showing of Linklaters & Paines, which is generally reckoned to be one of the leading three firms on account of its top-flight client list. With just three deals worth a total of pounds 1.9bn, it retained the sixth position it held at the end of last year.

Meanwhile, there is also a continued improvement in the management buyout and buy-in market. Preliminary figures for the first half of the year just published by the Centre for Management Buyout Research show the value of deals higher than at any time since 1989 at pounds 2.4bn.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
News
US comedian Bill Mahr
people
Voices
Winston Churchill, then prime minister, outside No 10 in June 1943
voicesA C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Sport
football
News
Rob Lowe
peopleRob Lowe hits out at Obama's snub of Benjamin Netanyahu
PROMOTED VIDEO
News
Davies (let) says: 'Everybody thought we were having an affair. It was never true!'
people'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Arts and Entertainment
Over their 20 years, the band has built a community of dedicated followers the world over
music
News
Staff assemble outside the old City Road offices in London
mediaThe stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century at Britain's youngest paper
Life and Style
The Oliver twins, Philip and Andrew, at work creating the 'Dizzy' arcade-adventure games in 1988
techDocumentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Arts and Entertainment
Krall says: 'My hero player-singer is Elton John I used to listen to him as a child, every single record
music
News
Friends for life … some professionals think loneliness is more worrying than obesity
scienceSocial contact is good for our sense of wellbeing - but it's a myth that loneliness kills, say researchers
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Arts and Entertainment
The Wu-Tang Clan will sell only one copy of their album Once Upon A Time In Shaolin
musicWu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own only copies of their latest albums
News
i100
Environment
Number so freshwater mussels in Cumbria have plummeted from up to three million in the 20th century to 500,000
environment
Life and Style
Models – and musicians – on the catwalk in Dior Homme for the men’s 2015/16 fashion show in Paris
fashionAt this season's Paris shows, various labels played with the city boys' favourite
News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Recruitment Genius: Tax Assistant

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Tax Assistant is required to join a leading ...

Recruitment Genius: Outbound Sales Executive - OTE £25,000

£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Ashdown Group: Java Developer / J2EE Developer - Watford - £45,000 - £47,000

£45000 - £47000 per annum + bonus + benefits: Ashdown Group: Java Developer / ...

Ashdown Group: Marketing Product Manager - (Financial Services) - SW London

£35000 - £38000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - Marke...

Day In a Page

Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us