09 Baker & McKenzie
With its huge global presence spanning 26 of the world’s 30 largest economies, Baker & McKenzie is a “dominant player” in the international legal market. The firm has 5,600 lawyers at its disposal across 77 offices ensuring clients are supported wherever they are doing business. The focus for 2016 is on building capabilities within the firm to assist clients facing relatively new issues such as compliance and regulatory, data privacy and cybersecurity.
PEOPLE AND PRACTICES
Baker & McKenzie has a “market-leading” technology, communications and commercial group advising IT, media and telecommunications companies on their activities. The practice encompasses experts in commercial transactions, disputes and regulatory issues.
Head of the firm’s global technology practice group Harry Small is a “renowned” lawyer in the field who advises on contract negotiations and dispute resolution. Clients appreciate his “deep market knowledge” and his ability to “always keep up to date with the latest developments”. Ian Walden is a consultant at the firm who has been involved in many law reform projects. His expertise lies in regulatory and transactional matters affecting TMT clients and examples of his work include advising a major cloud provider on the regulatory treatment of its services and acting for it when liaising with law enforcement agencies. Sydney-based Anne-Marie Allgrove concentrates her practice on privacy issues and government contracts including outsourcing agreements.
The capital markets practice consists of more than 360 lawyers across 77 jurisdictions. Andrew Reilly heads the firm's US capital markets practice in Australia. His work includes advising on the US tranche of Australian IPOs for companies such as Boart Longyear, Promina and Zinifex, as well as equity placements for companies including Qantas. Serhiy Chorny is co-managing partner and head of the banking and finance group in Kyiv. He is a “frontrunner” in the sector advising on debt capital markets and structured finance transactions. He is “innovative” and a “pioneering figure” in Ukraine.
The dispute resolution practice is home to some leading practitioners in the international arbitration field. Grant Hanessian is global co-chair of Baker & McKenzie’s international arbitration group, while Vladimir Khvalei heads the firm’s CIS dispute resolution practice group in Moscow. He serves as vice president of the ICC International Court of Arbitration and serves as counsel and arbitrator. Lawrence Newman is renowned for his AAA and ICC-related expertise and Joerg Risse in Hamburg is double-qualified in Germany and New York. Stefan Riegler and the "very energetic and responsive" Alexander Petsche both score highly in Austria.
In 2015 the firm represented Fedex in its successful acquisition of TNT for $4.8 billion, including advising on the competition aspects. Competition partners Fiona Carlin and Gavin Bushell were both involved and highly praised for their work. Carlin is the managing partner of the European and competition law practice in Brussels and chairs the firm’s European competition law practice group. She is “incredibly diligent” in her work and clients find her “a pleasure to work with”. Bushell has broad experience in all aspects of merger transactions, international cartel and horizontal agreement investigations, state aid proceedings, abuse of dominance investigations and competition litigation. He is “world-class” and “much sought-after”.
Baker & McKenzie is a pioneer in pro bono practice. The firm has teamed with some of the largest corporations in the world to expand its sphere of influence. One such project includes partnering with United Airlines and the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless to create The Homeless Youth Handbook – Illinois, a guide to help homeless young people better understand their legal rights. Furthermore, the firm hosted its second annual Children’s Rights Summit on 1 December 2015 to engage in cross-discipline discussion with in-house counsel, private practitioners, children’s rights advocates and experts, and technology experts to meet the legal needs of vulnerable children and youths.
Baker & McKenzie’s global diversity and inclusion committee is comprised of members from all four regions in which the firm operates and works to develop and implement initiatives to further diversity within the firm. Initiatives include the North America Women’s Initiative, led by Chicago partner Regine Corrado, which focuses on the advancement of women to leadership roles, as well as on recruiting and retaining women. The firm has also established programmes to attract and develop minority lawyers such as funding tuition grants and creating a scholarship with Columbia Law School for international LLM students who demonstrate academic success and a significant need for financial aid.