Sidley’s office in London, its largest in Europe, has served clients in the London market since 1974. The firm gained a significant advantage in 1994 when it began offering English law advice in addition to U.S. legal advice. Having lawyers qualified to practice in both jurisdictions for more than 20 years has enhanced our reputation for assisting global businesses and governments across a variety of industries.
English law is frequently chosen as the governing law in cross-border transactions spanning Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and the Americas. Our London office is the firm’s hub for coordinating such projects. Sidley’s clients in London include the world’s leading financial institutions, funds, life sciences, FTSE 100 and Fortune 500 companies.
Our London team focuses on numerous areas of law, including:
- Capital markets—We offer both English and U.S. law advice on debt, equity and equity-linked securities transactions, acting for issuers, underwriters and other market participants. Our capabilities extend to hybrid capital transactions, IPOs, restructurings and related liability management transactions.
- Competition/antitrust—Our team assists clients with all types of competition matters, including global merger clearances, antitrust investigations by UK and EU authorities, EU state aid cases and litigation before the European and English courts, as well as counseling, compliance and policy projects.
- M&A and private equity—We advise on all corporate and commercial matters, including M&A (public and private and, in particular, cross-border deals), joint ventures, labor and employment, corporate governance, principal finance and structured investments. Our team also fields significant experience advising private equity sponsors across the broad spectrum of private equity transactions, from high-value leveraged buyouts (LBOs) to growth equity investments in emerging market companies.
- Corporate reorganization and bankruptcy—Our capabilities extend to court-supervised proceedings in England and Wales and the U.S., as well as to out-of-court workouts and complex restructurings throughout the world.
- Dispute resolution—Our team acts on high-value multi-jurisdictional commercial disputes. We handle litigation and international arbitration and assist companies with internal and government investigations, regulatory compliance and product liability issues.
- Finance—We represent clients throughout the creation, management, restructuring and termination of various structured finance, securitization and derivative transactions. We are known for our innovative approach, our cross-border experience and our familiarity with complex finance structures.
- Insurance—Our team advises on a wide range of transactional and regulatory insurance and reinsurance matters, including M&A, insurance-linked securities, longevity risk transfer, distribution, insurance business transfers, restructurings and capital raising.
- Investment funds—We advise on all aspects of the structure and operation of hedge funds, venture capital, private equity and real estate funds and other “alternative” investment products. We are also leaders in advising on the regulatory regimes applicable to funds operating in Europe.
- Financial Services Regulatory—Our lawyers advise banks, investment managers, securities firms, insurance companies, payment service providers and their intermediaries on UK and EU financial services regulation.
- Privacy and data security—We advise clients across all business and industry sectors on UK and EU privacy, data protection, cybersecurity and e-commerce issues.
- Tax—Our team advises on the UK and international tax aspects of mergers and acquisitions, restructuring and insolvency, capital markets, banking and structured finance and international investment funds, as well as the resolution of tax controversies, including tax-related litigation.
Recognition for the London office
Strong leadership in advising clients has earned the London office recognition in numerous industry publications. This includes the 2016 edition of Chambers UK, which recognized Sidley as a leading law firm in 12 categories. In addition, Chambers UK recognized 17 Sidley lawyers across several practice areas as leading individuals in the United Kingdom. In the 2015 edition of The Legal 500 UK Sidley, described as being “dedicated, precise and responsive,” was ranked in 18 practice areas. In addition, 12 Sidley lawyers were recognized as “Leading Individuals” and 27 lawyers were “Recommended.” Sidley was deemed a “Commended” law firm in Dispute Resolution by the Financial Times’ “Innovative Lawyers 2015” report. We were also named “Finance Team of the Year” at The Lawyer Awards 2015, where the firm was recognized for its role as international legal counsel to Bank of Cyprus Group. We received “Best Onshore Law Firm – Client Service” at the Hedge Fund Manager (HFM) European Hedge Fund Services Awards 2014. Members of our team have also been acknowledged in IFLR1000 and Who’s Who Legal, among other publications.