Will Lawes became Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer's senior partner on 1 January 2011. Prior to that he was co-head of the firm's worldwide financial institutions group for six years. He specialises in corporate governance, public bids, mergers and demergers, private acquisitions and disposals, joint ventures, restructurings and equity issues of all types, both in the UK and across borders. He advises a range of corporate, investment bank and financial institutions clients.
His recent work includes acting for Gartmore, the asset management company, on its IPO on the London Stock Exchange and on the recent offer from Henderson; KBC on the sale of its UK stockbroker, Peel Hunt, to a consortium of management and investors; MMC on its agreement to buy HSBC's worldwide insurance broking business; Northern Rock on dealing with its liquidity crisis and the process leading to nationalisation; Pearl, the UK insurer, on its hostile £6 billion offer for Resolution plc and the competing offer from Standard Life; and the underwriters and sponsors of various capital raisings by RBS, HBOS, Lloyds, Barclays and Bradford & Bingley; Vodafone on the £4.36 billion sale of its stake in China Mobile; O2 in relation to the £18 billion offer from Telefónica; Grupo Ferrovial and the other consortium members on the £12 billion hostile offer for BAA; and Hanson in relation to the £8 billion offer from HeidelbergCement.
Will was educated at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, and Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge. He joined the firm in 1986 and has been a partner since 1994. He is a visiting fellow at the Centre for Corporate Reputation, University of Oxford.
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