Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP at a Glance

Uppers

  • “International culture and exposure”
  • “No billable target”
  • “Colleagues who are simultaneously brilliant and pleasant”

Downers

  • “Technology is awful”
  • “The hours (when work on cross border deals)”
  • “We aren't as well known in the US”

The Buzz

  • “Truly global firm”
  • “International antitrust powerhouse”
  • “More prestigious offshore”
  • “Cliquey culture”

About Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP

For over 250 years, Freshfields has remained a constant at the top of the U.K. legal market. Known as one of the Magic Circle firms, Freshfields has developed a multifaceted practice encompassing antitrust, international corporate work, finance, dispute resolution, real estate, tax, and intellectual property. With 27 international offices, the firm has expanded its reach around the globe and has become a player in the United States thanks to the growing presence in the U.S. with offices in New York and Washington, DC.

Established Name, Modern Growth

Founded in 1743, Freshfields just might be the oldest international law firm in the world. For the bulk of its history, the firm remained relatively small, yet pedigreed. The firm's modern evolution began with the deregulation of the London markets in the 1980s, placing an emphasis on corporate work, and the firm's massive global expansion in the 1990s. In 2000, Freshfields merged with top German firms Bruckhaus Westrick Heller Löber and Deringer Tessin Herrmann & Sedemund, creating a pan-European behemoth. Freshfields was also one of the first western firms in Asia and now has a sizeable presence there.

Today, Freshfields operates under what it labels a "comprehensive global approach to business." Despite the firm's London roots, over 70 percent of the firm's 2,500+ attorneys work outside of the U.K.  

Not Born in the U.S.A. but Working Hard Here

From scones to apples, Freshfields has settled into its U.S.-based practice. The New York office specializes in corporate, finance, tax, and litigation matters, offering services related to M&A (primarily of the cross-border variety), infrastructure and project finance, general banking transactions, white collar defense, international arbitration, civil litigation, and corporate tax. Its clients include banks and financial institutions, public companies, CEOs, foreign government agencies, private equity firms, and hedge funds.

Meanwhile, inside the Beltway, Freshfields has built a powerful U.S. antitrust practice that outstrips those of other firms with European roots. Its recent headline-grabbing matters include advising Anheuser-Busch InBev on its $108bn acquisition of SABMiller, Rexam on the $6.9bn takeover by US rival Ball Corporation, and Novartis AG on its $5.4bn sale of its animal health unit to Eli Lilly and the OTC JV with GSK Consumer Health.

And Beyond

Freshfields has been active in Asia for more than 30 years, and now offers the most extensive regional legal service network across Asia-with offices in Beijing, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Singapore, and Tokyo. The firm's long-standing presence in Asia has enabled it to develop a deep knowledge of the political and regulatory context which, in turn, means better support on investments in the region. Asia-based attorneys work on everything from corporate and securities work to finance to IP to antitrust, with clients like Deutsche Bank, HP, CK Hutchison, Pepsi, Bank of China, and Warburg Pincus knocking on the firm's door.

In Latin America, the firm has established relationships with a number of local law firms and has successfully handled arbitrations, investment disputes and other transactions in the region. Its notable matters include representing Canadian gold mining company Crystallex International Corporation, before the ICSID, in securing a $1.39bn award-one of the largest awards in ICSID's history-due to Venezuela's unfair and inequitable treatment and unlawful expropriation of Crystallex's investment in the Las Cristinas mining project, and advising AB InBev on its acquisition of SABMiller-the largest ever takeover of a London-listed company.

To meet clients' demands for more international experience, Freshfields has recently expanded its transactional practice in the United States with the appointments of several distinguished lawyers. This expansion marks a milestone in the firm's U.S. practice-anchored in New York and Washington, DC-where it already has strength in arbitration, litigation and global investigations, as well as antitrust, M&A, tax and finance. The additions demonstrate the firm's commitment to strategic investments in the United States and solidify its already stellar worldwide reputation.

IN THE NEWS

May 2016
European Vacation

Freshfields acted as international legal counsel for Carlson Hospitality Group Inc., the global hospitality and travel company, on the sale of Carlson Hotels Inc. to HNA Tourism Holding (Group) Co., Ltd. The deal includes the acquisition of Carlson Hotels' 51.3 percent majority stake in Rezidor Hotel Group AB, Carlson Hotels' master licensee based in Brussels with properties across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. 

April 2016
You're Sitting on a Gold Mine

Freshfields secured a $1.39bn award on behalf of Canadian gold mining company Crystallex International Corporation-one of the largest awards in ICSID's history. The Tribunal awarded Crystallex damages of $1.202bn plus pre- and post-award interest due to Venezuela's unfair and inequitable treatment and unlawful expropriation of Crystallex's investment in the Las Cristinas mining project. 

March 2016
Global Business Forum

Freshfields and Columbia University's Richard Paul Richman Center for Business, Law, and Public Policy, a collaboration between Columbia Business School and Columbia Law School, have partnered to create the Global Business Forum, to be held annually to provide an essential opportunity for senior business executives to explore ways to manage risk and maximize returns in the international economy. The Forum has attracted an elite group of business figures, thinkers, and journalists, including Anheuser-Busch InBev CEO Carlos Brito, who will deliver the keynote address at the inaugural meeting. 

September 2015
Cutting Deals

Freshfields took home the Global M&A Deal of the Year award for Holcim/Lafarge at The American Lawyer's Global Legal Awards dinner. The European Commission announced its Phase I clearance of the merger of equals, with Freshfields representing Holcim, following an extensive dialogue with the parties that resulted in an innovative and unprecedented remedies package.

 

August 2015
All's Well with Honeywell

Freshfields advised Honeywell International on its agreement to purchase the Elster division of Melrose Industries for approximately $5bn. The acquisition is Honeywell's largest since its merger with AlliedSignal Inc. in 1999. The multijurisdictional Freshfields team spanned the firm's offices in London, New York, and Munich.

June 2015
Award-Worthy

The Legal 500 United States named Freshfields the International Arbitration Firm of the Year in its annual The Legal 500 US Awards. The honor comes on the heels of recent recognition in The Legal 500 United States 2015, where the practice was recommended as "top-tier" in international arbitration and Nigel Blackaby, US partner and global co-head of the international arbitration group, was listed as a "leading lawyer" and described as "virtually peerless."

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Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP

601 Lexington Avenue
31st Floor
New York, NY 10022
Phone: (212) 277-4000

Stats

  • Employer Type: Private
  • Managing Partner: Christopher Pugh
  • Regional Managing Partner, U.S.: Adam Siegel
  • Hiring Attorney: Jerome Ranawake (New York)
  • Total No. Attorneys 2016: 2,600

  • Base Salary
    U.S. Offices
    1st year: $180,000
    2nd year: $190,000
    3rd year: $210,000
    4th year: $235,000
    5th year: $260,000
    6th year: $280,000
    7th year: $300,000
    8th year: $315,000
    Summer associate: $3,460/week

  • Summer Associate Offers
    25 out of 25 (2Ls) (2015)

  • Major Departments & Practices
    Antitrust, Competition & Trade
    Corporate
    Dispute Resolution (International Arbitration, Litigation, White Collar)
    Finance
    Intellectual Property/Information Technology
    Tax

Major Office Locations

  • New York, NY
  • Washington, DC
  • Abu Dhabi
  • Amsterdam
  • Bahrain
  • Beijing
  • Berlin
  • Brussels
  • Cologne
  • Dubai
  • Düsseldorf
  • Frankfurt
  • Hamburg
  • Hanoi
  • Ho Chi Minh City
  • Hong Kong
  • London
  • Madrid
  • Milan
  • Moscow
  • Munich
  • Paris
  • Rome
  • Shanghai
  • Singapore
  • Tokyo
  • Vienna
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