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Clifford Chance

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Regional coverage

Europe

Our market-leading European capability gives clients access to the local know-how of a top-tier national firm with the cross-border resources of an international network.

Delivering market leading advice at national and European levels

Clients benefit from the breadth of our European team of more than 1,100 lawyers and over 400 partners, working out of our international network across the UK and continental Europe. We are a top-tier firm in every European country we work in, helping clients understand the local markets, key players, and legal frameworks. And because we regularly work on cross-border deals, clients receive advice from lawyers who regularly work in extended multi-practice, multi-office teams.

Understanding our clients through sector focus

We work closely with clients on transactions and matters that are critical to their businesses and this keeps us at the forefront of industry developments. We have built global sector teams that share knowledge and keep clients up to date on sector trends. Combined with our European and international reach, our deep sector knowledge gets the best possible results for our clients.

One example is our strategic role in the European Union’s management of the Euro crisis. We advised the European Commission on the incorporation of the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) in 2010 and continue to advise the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) on a debt issuance programme (aggregate value of €241 billion). Our team navigated capital markets and banking regulations under Luxembourg, English, German, US and EU law – all within tight timescales.

And in 2013, a Frankfurt-led team was supported by lawyers from the Czech Republic, Italy, Poland, Spain, as well as China, Brazil, Japan and South Korea, to advise Cinven's Fifth Fund on the purchase of leading ceramics manufacturer CeramTec, Plochingen (Germany) for a purchase price of €1.49 billion.

Client-focused and forward thinking

We deliver these results through close working relationships with our clients, supported by genuine cooperation across practice group and geographic borders. Client comments are often as much about the way we work as they are about the quality of our advice.

Recent highlights

Recent assignments

Examples of work include advising:

  • a banking consortium led by Barclays, Commerzbank, Merrill Lynch and Société Générale in connection with a bond issue in a total volume of €2 billion by Bayer AG, Leverkusen
  • Carrefour Banque on its first credit card securitization transaction for revolving credit tapped via PASS credit cards
  • the European Commission on the incorporation of the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) in 2010 and continue to advise the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) on a debt issuance programme that has a current aggregate value of €241 billion
  • Cinven's Fifth Fund, managed by European private equity investor Cinven, London, on the purchase of CeramTec, Plochingen (Germany) for a purchase price of €1.49 billion. The transaction is subject to approval by the relevant regulatory authorities. CeramTec, a subsidiary of US-based Rockwood Holdings, is one of the leading manufacturers of high performance ceramics used for example in the medical, automotive, industrial, and electronics sectors
  • KBC Bank in its role as underwriter and bookrunning mandated lead arranger (BMLA) of the lenders of a €90 million senior revolving credit facility (RCF) for Fieldlink NV that was completed in November 2013 and was in conjunction with a €285 million high-yield bond. The pan-jurisdictional transaction involved seven jurisdictions (Netherlands, France, Belgium, Germany, Spain, Italy, United Arab Emirates/Dubai) in all of which Clifford Chance offices operated with a cross-practice team
  • Royal Dutch Shell plc on the antitrust aspects of its acquisition of part of Repsol S.A.´s LNG portfolio outside of North America for a cash consideration of US$4.4 billion
  • the Belgian Government on a secured state aid clearance for the aid package granted to the Dexia group by Belgium, France and Luxembourg and the issuance of the definitive guarantee
  • the parallel acquisitions by private equity firm Cinven of Mercury Pharma and Amdipharm to form AMco Group, a global business selling pharmaceuticals to over 80 countries with an enterprise value of £830 million. Together, the deals represented one of the largest UK buyouts in 2012.