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Clifford Chance

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We are the 'go to' law firm in France. We have 50 years of unrivalled experience of advising domestic and international clients.

A top tier national firm with a global network

We opened our Paris office in 1962 and are recognised as one of France’s leading law firms. We have 38 partners and over 170 lawyers. Our clients include leading French and international corporates, banks and financial institutions.

We are actively involved in the French legal community and have close working-relationships with government and regulatory bodies. Many of our partners and counsel sit on working parties that advise on industry regulations and state legislation.

Our lawyers are used to working with colleagues from our 35 office network to deliver practical advice on complex issues.

Our clients come to us because of our outstanding expertise across the whole spectrum of legal products, our client-friendly approach and our 'can do' attitude.

In 2016 we were awarded ‘France Law Firm of the Year’ at the Chambers Europe Awards for Excellence and at the IFRL Europe Awards 2016.

Our approach is tailored to our clients' industry sectors

We believe that the most effective advice is grounded in industry knowledge and local-market experience. We have established a number of global cross-practice groups that have detailed knowledge of our clients’ industries and businesses and provide focused, practical and comprehensive advice.

We are known for our innovative solutions and market firsts

We provide clients with top notch legal advice in areas where our competitors simply do not have the required expertise.

We have been at the forefront of innovative solutions and market firsts. We advised the coordinating committee of senior creditors of the Group HIME / SAUR in the negotiation and the first French "lender led" implementation of the debt restructuring of the Saur Group in the framework of a mandate ad hoc and conciliation procedures. 

Recent highlights

Awards and milestones

  • France Law Firm of the Year: IFLR Europe Awards, 2016, 2015, 2014
  • France Law Firm of the Year: Chambers Europe Awards for Excellence, 2016, 2015, 2013
  • Client Service Award for France: Chambers Europe Awards for Excellence, 2014

Recent assignments

Examples of work include:

  • Corporate / M&A – Airbus Group on the creation with Safran of their new joint venture named Airbus Safran Launchers.
  • Infrastructure Finance – Axione Infrastructures and its sponsors on the structuring and the refinancing of its existing indebtedness through a securitized loan, giving rise to the first listed French law project bond.
    European Telecoms Deal of the Year - IJ Global Awards 2014
  • Acquisition Finance – The lenders on the financing for the acquisition by Ardian and Predica of Vinci Park SA for an enterprise value of € 1.960 billion.
    European Acquisition Deal of the Year, IJ Global Awards 2014
  • Capital Markets – Crédit Foncier de France as lead arranger, seller, servicer, FCT custodian and swap provider on the first French fully-placed public RMBS - CFHL-1 2014 - since the financial crisis.
    EMEA Structured Finance Issue Deal of the Year, International Finance Review Awards 2014
  • International Projects – GDF SUEZ, Nareva and Mitsui consortium on the $2.6 billion financing of a 1,386 MW ultra-supercritical coal-fired independent power project near the port of Safi in Morocco.
    African Power Deal of the Year, IJ Global Awards 2014
    North African Power Deal of the Year, PFI Awards 2014
  • Restructuring – The senior creditors’ coordination committee on the restructuring of the group HIME / SAUR.
    Restructuring and Insolvency Deal of the Year, IFLR Europe Awards 2014
  • Banking & Finance – The European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) and the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) in relation to the eurozone crisis management.
    Financial Regulation Team of the Year, IFLR Europe Awards 2013
  • Private Equity – Cinven on the acquisition of Labco, one of the largest European operators of medical diagnostic laboratories, from a consortium of investors.
  • Funds – Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations (CDC), acting on behalf of 18 insurance companies and the French Pension Reserve Fund (FRR), on the creation of the first 2 funds for the financing of small and medium-sized enterprises (PME) and mid-cap enterprises (ETI) – the “NOVO” funds.
  • Real Estate – AEW Europe on the acquisition and the financing, from the CBRE Retail Property Fund, of the “Celsius” portfolio which comprises 10 shopping centres across France and Belgium.

Directory listings and client comments

Directory listings

Client comments

  • "This international powerhouse maintains its strong foothold in the French market, with growing prominence in the areas of structured finance and energy and natural resources. Clifford Chance's Paris office boasts market-leading teams in public law and international projects, as well as banking and finance. A recent highlight saw the team advise Dongfeng Motor Group on its proposed equity investment in PSA Peugeot Citroën Group."
    Client Service Award: Chambers Europe Awards for Excellence, 2014
  • "This international titan's efforts across a spectrum of sectors have been noted, with the firm gaining particular prominence in the areas of banking and finance, projects and public law. The much-admired group serves a range of eminent clients, including several European states. The past year has seen it continue to advise the EFSF on sovereign bailouts."
    France Law Firm of the Year: Chambers Europe Awards for Excellence, 2013
  • "Practically perfect, one of the best firms I have ever worked with. The quality of the lawyers is world class. They bring their expertise and knowledge and apply it to our business. They consider both the commercial and legal aspects and explain things in ways we can understand. Finally they are great to work with; I feel comfortable talking to them about anything, and they make sure that negotiations stay friendly."
    European Law Firm of the Year: Chambers Europe Awards for Excellence, 2013

Areas of expertise

 Legal Areas