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Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance

People & Places


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 39 partners and over 180 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 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 2017, we were awarded 'France Law Firm of the Year' at the IFRL Europe Awards 2017. 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, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014
  • France Law Firm of the Year: Chambers Europe Awards for Excellence, 2016, 2015, 2013

Recent assignments

Examples of work include:

  • Corporate / M&A - Engie on the sale of its portfolio of upstream liquefied natural gas assets to Total.
  • M&A / Infrastructure - Cube Infrastructures Management on the disposal of the Idex group, operating in energy services and district heating.
  • Private Equity - Permira on the acquisition of Exclusive Networks from the management team, Copeba, Eddmond de Rothschild and Sogecap.
  • Banking & Finance - J.P Morgan on the financing of the acquisition by AXA of 100% of Groupe XL, one of the global leaders in damage insurance for businesses and reinsurance.
  • Banking & Finance - BNP Paribas and BNP Paribas Fortis on the financing of the acquisition of Ablynx by Sanofi.
  • Infrastructure Finance - LISEA and the Sponsors on the refinancing of the commercial debt raised for the High-Speed railway between Tours and Bordeaux, the largest contemplated refinancing in 2018.
  • Infrastructure Finance - The lenders on the refinancing of the PPP of the HSL Bretagne – Pays de la Loire (BPL), linking Le Mans and Rennes, one of the biggest European rail projects.
  • Project Finance - The lenders on the financing of a new 175 MW gas-fired power plant in Mozambique.
  • Capital Markets - Société Générale and ALD on the 144A IPO and listing of ALD, the international car leasing and fleet management company, on the regulated market of Euronext Paris.
    IPO of the Year – 2018 – Magazine des Affaires
  • Capital Markets - EIF on the first and second European securitisation of market platform SME loans SBOLT I and SBOLT II.
  • Capital Markets - Unibail-Rodamco on the inaugural hybrid dual tranche bond issuance for financing and refinancing of Unibail-Rodamco’s acquisition of Westfield.
  • Public Law - The French Ministry in charge of transport on the structuring of potential privatization of the Paris airports owner and operator ADP.
  • Real Estate - AEW Ciloger on the sale to La Française of “Le Balthazar”, a 32,600 m² office building located at Place des Droits de l’Homme in Saint-Denis.

Directory listings and client comments

  • "The Paris arm of international powerhouse Clifford Chance continues to be praised for its leading position in the French market. The exceptional team boasts an extensive client portfolio of key players within the financial sector who benefit from the firm's vast global network and full service offering. The Paris office provides clients with expertise in a number of practice areas and industry sectors, as diverse as acquisition finance, international projects, public law and sport. A standout recent mandate for the department in the private equity sphere has been assisting Cinven with its EUR1.3 billion acquisition of Labco from a consortium of investors."
    France Law Firm of the Year: Chambers Europe Awards for Excellence, 2016

Areas of expertise

 Legal Areas