CLIFFORD CHANCE

Comment: A leading firm in M&A, which throughout Europe has had a particularly strong year, showing a sharp upturn in deal numbers and volume in comparison to its competitors. And the German team has become a central part of that team with a strong group of still relatively young partners which have profited from the combination of strong industry specialties and cross-border integration (the SCA deal involving a large European team in the healthcare sector was a particular highlight). Over the past few years it has built up the leading German practice for industrial companies: prominent deals for Schaeffler and Freudenberg were the best new examples. The success of the Munich practice alone has made the German partners particularly important within the international practice, despite some high-profile departures with strong contacts. This is most clear in the high number of in-bound China deals. While the most obvious development is the emergence of the strong younger generation (Rhiel, Holstein and Krecek) as prominent in their own right, the return of Dietzel to prominence with the huge Kuka deal was another bonus.
Strengths: Strong focus on ?pharmaceuticals and healthcare, banks, automotive, ?energy.
Development potential: The good relations of the London practice to the banking community there is already turning out to be important in the post-Brexit world ( ?corporate) and it offers an opportunity for CC to become a more prominent advisor in Germany to the top banks. Hengeler, Freshfields and Linklaters are currently better positioned.
Recommended: Dr. Anselm Raddatz (“always level-headed, well connected in German industry”, competitor), Dr. Christof-Ulrich Goldschmidt, Dr. Thomas Krecek (“strong knowledge of the financial sector, we can always talk to him about the structure of the deal”, client), Dr. Christoph Holstein (“always good work, deals always go well”, client), Dr. Nicole Englisch (“always cooperates well in joint deals”, competitor), Dr. Andreas Dietzel, Dr. Jörg Rhiel (“energetic and intelligent”, competitor), Joachim Hasselbach, Dr. Stefanie Tetz, Markus Muhs (“top man for infrastructure deals”, competitor).
Practice: Wide spectrum of transactions and large proportion of international work. Several sector groups complemented by bilateral and international teams. (18 partners, 2 counsel, plus associates)
Clients: ?? Fresenius Kabi on takeover of biosimilars business from Merck; Zhengzhou Coal/CRCI on acquisition of generator division from Bosch; SCA Group on takeover of BSN medical; Kuka on public takeover bid by Midea Group; Schaeffler on acquisition of Compact Dynamics and sale of Schaeffler Motorenelemente.
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