This firm appears in the Who's Who Legal 100 2014
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Cleary Gottlieb made three big-name hires in 2013: the former director of the SEC Division of Trading and Markets rejoined the DC office, arbitration specialist Richard Kreindler transferred from another global firm in Frankfurt, and the former general counsel at American Express moved to the New York office. With leading practices across its network, the firm continues to attract renowned experts, thus cementing its reputation as a global leading firm.
|CLEARY GOTTLIEB STEEN & HAMILTON|
|Arbitration||2||Insolvency & Restructuring||3|
|Business Crime Defence||2||Life Sciences||1|
|Corporate Governance||6||Real Estate||2|
|Corporate Tax||8||Telecoms and Media||2|
As a leading international law firm, Cleary Gottlieb counts multinational corporations, large international financial institutions and sovereign governments and their agencies among its clients. With offices located in major financial centres around the world, the firm is primed to handle major banking and financial matters and through operating as a single, integrated global partnership clients are able to access advice and resources worldwide. Cleary Gottlieb serves as a “top choice” firm for those with international business interests.
|Total Listings in WWL||70||Established||1946|
|Home jurisdiction||US||Total size of firm||1,200|
|Number of partners||189||Number of offices||16|
PEOPLE AND PRACTICES
Cleary Gottlieb’s antitrust/competition practice has been operating for over 65 years. The firm has a strong presence across the US and Europe and advises clients in a variety of industries including energy, health care and finance. Nicholas Levy is a “world-renowned” practitioner focusing on EU and UK antitrust law. Antoine Winckler is a “favourite to work with” due to his experience in European and French competition law including cartel investigations, merger control and market dominance. Maurits Dolmans is another “notable” lawyer with particular expertise in the telecoms and energy fields. Francisco-Enrique González Diaz has a “very impressive” practice dealing with European and Spanish competition law. On the US side, managing partner Mark Leddy is “one of the best” and regularly appears before antitrust regulatory agencies.
The tax team provides both local and multi-jurisdictional tax advice for a range of transactions such as in mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures and restructurings. The team also has a strong litigation practice. Based in New York, Erika Nijenhuis has an “outstanding” practice focusing on US income tax with an emphasis on financial products. Leslie Samuels is an “expert” on international and domestic taxation. James Peaslee is also “highly recommended” for his wide-ranging tax practice.
The firm’s banking and financial institutions team is involved in a number of large and complex banking transactions, including representing BNP Paribas in its acquisition of the remaining 25 per cent stake from the Belgian state of the latter’s holding in BNP Paribas Fortis. In New York, Robert Tortoriello’s practice focuses on domestic and foreign bank expansion. Seth Grosshandler is an “extremely talented” banking expert working on matters involving derivative products and securities transactions.
The capital markets team is also internationally renowned. Based in the Frankfurt office, Gabriele Apfelbacher is “very knowledgeable” on debt and equity matters and capital markets regulation. Thomas Kopp is a “leading figure” in Germany with over a decade of experience.
Cleary Gottlieb is representing Google in the sale of Motorola Mobility to Lenovo Group Limited – an example of the type of high-profile case that the M&A group frequently handles. Victor Lewkow is a “first-rate” lawyer. His practice focuses on public and private M&A transactions as well as related corporate governance issues. Paul Shim has a “great reputation” for his expertise in this field. Bank of America Merrill Lynch and American Express Company form part of his ”impressive” client list. Further praise goes to Alan Beller, a “highly qualified” corporate governance specialist, who advises senior officials on related subjects.
PRO BONO AND PUBLIC SERVICE
The firm dedicates more than 90,000 hours worldwide to pro bono and public service efforts annually. In the US, lawyers provide advice on a wide range of matters including housing litigation, immigration law and death penalty cases and the London team is active with the pro bono charity LawWorks. Cleary Gottlieb also currently sponsors two public interest externship programmes, providing lawyers with the opportunity to work for selected legal services organisations for a four month period. Community service is also a priority, with the New York team linked in a “partnership” with Washington Irving High School where the staff help prepare students for college applications.
Cleary Gottlieb’s committee on diversity and inclusion issues consists of over 50 lawyers and organises various events and initiatives. The firm hosts an annual citywide event to celebrate its partnership with the Sponsors for Educational Opportunity, a programme offering ethnic minority students the chance to undertake legal internships prior to their first year at university. As well as outreach to law students, the firm also provides forums to female and LGBT staff to explore and discuss topics of interest and various initiatives.
Asia and the Middle East have clearly been in the firm’s sights in recent years, with the Cleary Gottlieb’s most recent office openings in 2012 in Seoul and Abu Dhabi. With these offices, Cleary Gottlieb has committed itself to extending its global reach in order to fully service its multinational clients. It is expected that the firm will continue its strategic expansion into emerging markets to remain at the forefront of the global marketplace.
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Nominees have been selected based upon comprehensive, independent survey work with both general counsel and private practice lawyers worldwide. Only specialists who have met independent international research criteria are listed.