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Clifford Chance

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We are one of Italy’s leading international law firms and have worked continuously in Italy since 1993. We are well known for our high-profile, innovative work.

A leader in Italy's legal and financial markets for over 20 years

We were one of the first international law firms to open offices in Italy - Rome in 1993 and Milan in 1994. We know the Italian market well and have long experience of cross-border deals.

We've invested in our Italian offices and we are now one of the few firms who can offer clients a full-service capability. Our team of approximately 100 lawyers comprises professionals qualified to practice in Italy, the UK, and the US and all our lawyers are permanently based in Italy.

In the 1990s we worked on a series of ground-breaking privatisations and financial markets deals, including the privatisations of Banca di Roma, BNL, Alitalia and Autostrade. These transactions and our way of working – teams of lawyers led by highly-experienced partners – helped to change the landscape of the Italian legal market.

Italian market know-how and multi-jurisdictional experience

More than half our partners have worked together for over 15 years. Our close-knit team’s well-established working relationships produce efficient, smooth-running teams. We know how to use the right resources to get the best results for clients on domestic matters and on international transactions where we regularly form extended teams with colleagues from our international network.

Clients tell us that our way of working and our Italian market know-how and capability deliver results. Recent cross-border transactions include: Electricité De France’s 2012 takeover of Edison, one of Italy's largest power companies with a market capitalization of €4.4 billion (US$5.7 billion); and the restructuring of €700million (US$920million) of Seat Pagine Gialle's senior debt in 2012 under an English Court scheme of arrangement, a first-of-a-kind deal for the Italian market. Our Italian litigation team successfully defended Citibank against market rigging allegations in the three-year Parmalat case that ended in 2011.

Recent highlights

Awards and milestones

  • Finance Firm of the Year, Top Legal Awards 2013
  • Charles Adams awarded Lawyer of the year - Finance practice: Top Legal Awards, 2012
  • Prada IPO awarded Equity Deal of the Year: IFLR Asia Awards, 2012
  • Charles Adams awarded Managing Partner of the Year: Top Legal Awards, 2011. Judges said, "In a delicate setting for international law firms, he successfully restructured the team, consolidating traditional leading areas, developing new non-cyclical fronts such as corporate crime and litigation."
  • Capital Markets Law Firm of the Year: Top Legal Awards, 2011. Judges said, "Strong from a year of achievements for debt transactions; in addition, in the context of equity, they won the mandate to assist banks in the first listing of an Italian company (Prada) in Hong Kong."

Recent assignments

Examples of work include advising:

  • Cerved in 2013 on the €75 million (US$104 million) high yield bond/super senior revolving credit refinancing of Cerved Holding / Cerved Group 
  • Enel in relation to Italian taxation on Enel hybrid bond issuance in 2013. This is the third direct issuance in the US by an Italian issuer and the Clifford Chance Tax team has been retrieved in all of them, having developed the relevant tax technology
  • Fondo Strategico Italiano S.p.A. in relation to the €2 billion (US$2.6billion) Joint Venture with Qatar Holding LLC to pursue joint investments in Italian companies operating in the so-called 'Made in Italy' sector in 2012
  • Unipol Fonsai in 2012 on the integration of Fondiaria- SAI S.p.A. in Unipol S.p.A and the Fondiaria-SAI S.p.A.'s rights issue
  • Seat Pagine Gialle in 2012 on the restructuring of €700 million (US$920 million) of senior debt under an English Court scheme of arrangement – the first UK Scheme of Arrangement for an Italian business (full details in this client briefing)
  • Electricité de France on its complex acquisition of Edison in 2012, one of Italy's largest power companies with a market capitalization of €4.4 billion (US$5.7 billion)
  • Standard & Poor's on a large number of ongoing damages claims brought by investors who bought Lehman securities. The case involves Lehman’s bankruptcy and the related market abuse investigation into the downgrading of Italian sovereign debt during the Eurozone crisis.

Directory listings and client comments

Highly rated by clients and by legal directories:

Chambers Global 2013

  • "The team is precise in its advice. Up to date and well positioned."
  • "I like the international network: when there are restrictions all over the world, Clifford Chance can answer questions quickly and without incurring further expense."
  • "The team is knowledgeable, responsive, reliable and service-oriented."

Chambers Global: Italy, 2013

We are ranked in Tier One or Tier Two by Chambers Global: Italy, 2013 for Banking & Finance, Corporate/M&A, Debt, Equity, Public Law, Restructuring & Insolvency, and Securitisation.

  • Tier One in Banking & Finance
  • Tier One in Capital Markets - Debt
  • Tier One in Capital Markets - ECM
  • Tier One in Capital Markets - Securitisation
  • Tier Two in Corporate/M&A
  • Tier Two in Restructuring & Insolvency
  • Tier Two in Public Law
  • Tier Three in Competition European Law 

Client comments

  • "This firm plays a starring role in many of the market's most important banking and finance mandates. The team draws particular praise for its expertise in leverage finance, capital markets and pure banking work... Sources are quick to praise the team's strength in cross-border deals, as demonstrated by its work for leading financial institutions such as JPMorgan, BNP Paribas and Crédit Agricole."
    Chambers Europe: Italy, 2013 – Banking & Finance
  • "This excellent team is strong across the board but has been particularly prominent in equity capital markets recently, winning a series of important mandates for both corporates and financial institutions... Market observers also regard the group as a significant player in securitisation."
    Chambers Europe: Italy, 2013 – Capital Markets
  • "The team is divided between Milan and Rome, and increasingly combines administrative assistance with traditional competition advice… A recent highlight saw the firm represent Pfizer before the IAA in an alleged abuse of dominance case, and subsequent appeal before the Rome administrative tribunal."
    Chambers Europe: Italy, 2013 – Competition/European Law
  • "The well-reputed corporate/M&A team at this magic circle firm has grown in size recently, and maintains a healthy level of activity on a variety of domestic and cross-border deals, advising high-profile clients."
    Chambers Europe: Italy, 2013 – Corporate/M&A
  • "This global firm has been involved in a number of the market's most significant cases over the past year... The team operates across a broad range of industries and of late has been particularly active in white-collar crime investigations and restructuring and insolvency matters."
    Chambers Europe: Italy, 2013 – Dispute Resolution
  • "This magic circle firm houses a comprehensive employment practice which is particularly commended for its cross-border capabilities."
    Chambers Europe: Italy, 2013 – Employment 
  • "This tax department is best known for acting on the tax aspects of M&A, capital markets and restructuring transactions... The team is also active in litigation and pre-litigation stages of challenges to tax assessments."
    Chambers Europe: Italy, 2013 – Tax

Siamo uno dei maggiori studi legali internazionali in Italia, dove operiamo ininterrottamente dal 1993. Siamo conosciuti e apprezzati per le nostre attività di alto profilo e fortemente innovative.

Protagonista del mercato legale e finanziario da oltre 20 anni

Siamo stati uno dei primi studi legali internazionali ad aprire delle sedi in Italia, a Roma nel 1993 e a Milano nel 1994. In questi vent'anni, abbiamo maturato un'eccellente conoscenza del mercato italiano e vantiamo una pluriennale esperienza sia nelle operazioni puramente domestiche sia in quelle cross-border.  

Il nostro impegno costante negli anni in Italia ci rende oggi uno dei pochi studi internazionali in grado di offrire ai clienti un servizio a 360° gradi. Il nostro team si compone di circa 100 avvocati inclusi professionisti abilitati ad operare in Italia, nel Regno Unito e negli Stati Uniti 

Negli anni '90 abbiamo realizzato una serie di operazioni innovative, tra cui le privatizzazioni di Banca di Roma, BNL, Alitalia e Autostrade. Queste operazioni, coniugate al nostro modo di operare – team di avvocati guidati da partner di grande esperienza – hanno contribuito a modificare e innovare il panorama del mercato legale in Italia. 

Profonda conoscenza del mercato italiano ed esperienza multi-giurisdizionale

Oltre la metà dei nostri partner lavora fianco a fianco da più di 15 anni e i rapporti consolidati all'interno del gruppo consentono di creare team efficienti e dinamici. Sappiamo come assicurare il miglior risultato sia nelle operazioni domestiche, sia in quelle internazionali, attraverso un'accurata scelta del team più adatto alle esigenze dei nostri clienti attingendo alle migliori risorse all'interno del nostro network.

I clienti ci confermano (si rimanda ai commenti che seguono) che il nostro approccio e le nostre competenze producono risultati tangibili. Tra le operazioni internazionali recentemente concluse segnaliamo: l'acquisizione nel 2012 da parte di Electricité De France di Edison e la ristrutturazione da €700 milioni del debito senior di Seat Pagine Gialle realizzata nel 2012 in base a uno scheme of arrangement di diritto inglese, la prima operazione di questo tipo mai realizzata in Italia. Inoltre, il nostro team italiano di contenzioso ha difeso con successo Citibank dalle accuse di aggiotaggio nell'ambito del procedimento Parmalat conclusosi, dopo tre anni, nel 2011.