Norton Rose LLP

  • Overview

THE SCOOP

With offices across Europe, the Middle East and Asia, Norton Rose Group is well known for its strength in corporate finance, energy and infrastructure, transport, financial institutions and technology.  The firm is a major player in Islamic finance with a long-established presence in the Middle East and has recently agreed to merge with Australian firm Deacons.

Strong roots

With origins dating back to 1794, Norton Rose can boast an impressive history.  Founder Sir Phillip Rose was an adviser to Benjamin Disraeli, and the firm at that time was particularly associated with finance and infrastructure finance.  Through early involvement in railways and investment funds, Norton Rose began its climb to prominence.

Having grown steadily for 150 years, the firm suffered a blow in 1992 when the IRA bombed its headquarters.  Between 1993 and 1995, the firm was forced to operate in temporary office space and was nearly crippled by refurbishment costs.  After turning to consultants Bain & Co for advice, Norton Rose began to pursue international expansion, setting its sights on the top end of the market.  By 2007, the firm's global network had begun to mature, and its turnover for 2007-2008 grew by 27 per cent to £297 million, with profit per equity partner rising 22 per cent to £625,000.  Overseas work accounted for a substantial portion, 42 per cent, of its revenue.

The Middle East and more

Foreign expansion has characterised Norton Rose's growth strategy for many years, and in 2007-2008 alone the firm spent £8.6 million on its global network.  More than half of its staff now operate overseas.  Norton Rose Group (which comprises Norton Rose LLP and its affiliates) established a presence in the Middle East in 1979, opening first an office in Bahrain, followed in 2003 by an office in Dubai.  In May 2008, the practice announced the launch of a new office in Abu Dhabi and established an alliance with the Abdulaziz Al-Assaf Law Firm in Riyadh.  Demonstrating its influence in the region, in September 2008, Norton Rose Group drafted a new arbitration law for the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) to put the emirate on a par with London, Paris and Singapore as a forum for disputes.  The new legislation opens up the centre to international disputes, whereas previously parties had to be registered with the DIFC or be a lawyer from the region.

In December 2008, Norton Rose (Asia) LLP became one of four city practices to be awarded a Qualifying Foreign Law Practice licence to practice law in Singapore.  The licence gives the firm the right to practice Singapore law through locally qualified solicitors.  Norton Rose's recently appointed chairman, Stephen Parish, has also suggested that a potential merger with an American firm may be in the future, as New York is seen as a possible outpost.  In June 2009, the practice announced a tie-up with Deacons, one of the largest firms in Australia.  The merger, effective in January 2010, will give Norton Rose Group 12 offices across Australasia.

The green team

One of the market's earliest leaders in renewable energy, carbon trading and climate change matters, Norton Rose advises financial institutions, governments and corporates on a range of carbon finance matters, with a focus on emission reduction projects, equity capital markets work, and low and zero carbon development.  Closely tied to this work is the firm's expertise in renewable energy, a field in which it has operated since the early 1990s.

In November 2008, Norton Rose LLP acted for banks BTM/UFG, BNPP, Fortis and HSBC in the arrangement of a £305 million facility for a portfolio of UK wind farms, including the Crystal Rig II project, which is set to be one of the UK's largest onshore wind farms.  The firm's global climate change and carbon finance group is led by partner Anthony Hobley.  A banking lawyer who previously worked in-house at the Climate Change Capital Carbon Fund, Hobley has been at the forefront of this developing area of law and was involved in the creation of the scheme governing carbon trading in the EU.



Norton Rose LLP


Kempson House
3 More London Riverside
London SE1 2AQ
Phone: +44 (0)20 7283 6000
www.nortonrose.com

STATS


  • Employer Type: Private
  • Chief executive: Peter Martyr
  • Total No. Attorneys 2009: 1,077

Major Office Locations

  • Manama, Bahrain
  • Brussels, Belgium
  • Shanghai, China
  • Beijing, China
  • Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Warsaw, Poland
  • Prague, Poland
  • Moscow, Russia
  • Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
  • Singapore, Singapore
  • Bangkok, Thailand
  • Dubai, United Arab Emirates
  • Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
  • London, United Kingdom
  • Paris, France
  • Munich, Germany
  • Frankfurt, Germany
  • Athens, Greece
  • Piraeus, Greece
  • Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  • Jakarta , Indonesia
  • Milan, Italy
  • Rome, Italy
  • Tokyo, Japan
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