Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has topped the mergermarket value league table of international law firms that advised on M&A deals in the record 2016 calendar year.
The firm, which saw its India practice head Pratap Amin retire late last year, acted on 6 M&A deals with a total value of $15.3bn in 2016, according to data provider mergermarket.
By contrast, in the year before last, Freshfields had failed to even make the top 15 of domestic and international firms, but with a 1039% year-on-year increase in values, 2016 was a bumper for the firm (as it was for everyone: Indian deal activity was the highest on record last year).
In 2016, Freshfields has been buoyed by having bagged many of the largest reported deals, including the $13bn Rosneft buy of Essar Oil, the $1.4bn Lafarge-Nirma deal, and the $1.1bn Mphasis, HP, Blackstone deal with its close Indian friend firm Platinum Partners.
Slaughter and May and Linklaters, next in the rankings, had each acted on five, with total values of around $8bn each. Slaughters, notably, experienced league table value growth of more than 38,000% as against the previous year.
Herbert Smith Freehills and Kirkland & Ellis were involved in around $6.5bn of recorded M&A deals in 2016, having had mandates on six and three transactions respectively.
The top 10 of foreign corporate firms is rounded off by Latham & Watkins, Davis Polk Wardwell, Shearman & Sterling, Norton Rose Fulbright and Simpson Thacher.
Ranks 11 to 15 were taken by Pinsent Masons (which saw a giant 9100% increase in deal values this year, having acted on three), as well as White & Case, Wong Partnership, Troutman Sanders and Weil Gotshal & Manges.
Weil, in 15th place, was the only foreign firm whose deal values reduced marginally in 2016.
DLA Piper topped the volumes league table, having acted on 10 deals in 2016, though the total valuation of $566m was not enough to see DLA break into even the top 15 by value.
Shearman was the runner-up in the 2016 volume table with 9 M&A deals to its name.
The highest-ranked foreign firms in 2015’s mergermarket value rankings were Davis Polk Wardwell, Sullivan & Cromwell and Linklaters, each of which recorded total deal amounts of between $2bn and $3bn.
By value: 2016 foreign firm league tables
|Rank||Firm||2016 value ($)||2016 deal count||2015 value ($)||2015-2016 change in value (%)|
|1||Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer||15345||6||1347||1039%|
|2||Slaughter and May||8471||5||22||38405%|
|4||Herbert Smith Freehills||6631||6||731||807%|
|5||Kirkland & Ellis||6308||3||712||786%|
|6||Latham & Watkins||3271||6||1077||204%|
|7||Davis Polk & Wardwell||3172||1||2893||10%|
|8||Shearman & Sterling||2545||9||613||315%|
|9||Norton Rose Fulbright||2341||5||1268||85%|
|10||Simpson Thacher & Bartlett||2312||3||1487||55%|
|12||White & Case||1458||6||251||481%|
|15||Weil Gotshal & Manges||1121||3||1194||-6%|
By volume: 2016 foreign law firm league tables
|Rank||Firm||2016 value ($)||2016 deal count||2015 value ($)||2015-2016 change in deal count (%)|
|2||Shearman & Sterling||2545||9||4||5|
|3||Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer||15345||6||4||2|
|4||Herbert Smith Freehills||6631||6||6||0|
|5||Latham & Watkins||3271||6||3||3|
|6||White & Case||1458||6||3||3|
|7||Slaughter and May||8471||5||2||3|