Telecommunications mergers and acquisitions
Few practices have the breadth and depth of our M&A experience in the area of international telecoms. We have advised on some of the largest and most complex transactions in the sector, as well as on more day-to-day bolt-on acquisitions, and across a range of sub-sectors and jurisdictions. We also have expertise in advising on strategic joint venture and partnering arrangements, which are a common feature of the telecoms sector, allowing clients to maximise opportunities, and mitigate risks, afforded by new markets. We have particular expertise in cross-border mergers and acquisitions, and advising on transactions in developing and transitional markets.
Telecoms privatisations and licence auctions
We have substantial experience of advising on all aspects of telecoms privatisations and licence auctions, particularly in “emerging” and “developing” telecoms markets in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa. We advise governments, underwriters and commercial purchasers, as well as newly-privatised companies. Our telecoms team of lawyers are familiar with the relevant issues and have considerable experience of developing practical solutions which are adapted to meet the particular policy considerations which tend to arise on telecoms privatisations
Telecoms capital markets
We are recognised as being one of the leading practices in the world in the provision of capital markets advice, both generally and in the telecoms sector. For example, we are described in the UK, The Legal 500 as “the only firm that consistently handles all size floats, from small cap AIM to large cap Official List work”. We often find ourselves advising clients alongside the world’s largest investment banks, and can provide advice on the IPO process in a number of jurisdictions, including the capability to provide advice on US securities offerings. We are developing a particular expertise on advising on international capital market offerings.
Our specialist expertise in telecommunications financing and the complex regulatory arena have made us one of the leading names in the industry. Team members are widely recognised as leading experts in the field of telecommunications financing, and have expertise in advising both lenders and borrowers across the spectrum of telecoms finance projects.
Our telecoms finance experts also have a great deal of expertise and experience in a wide range of other types of telecoms financing, including project financing, export credit financing, restructuring and international corporate rescue.
Regulation and competition (antitrust) – compliance and disputes
Our telecoms regulatory lawyers have a wealth of international experience in the sector, advising on regulatory compliance, using the regulator to secure clients’ rights and even challenging the regulators’ decisions in the courts. Competition (antitrust) law plays an increasing part in the telecoms sector: for example, in the EU, national and EU competition rules are being used in respect of interconnection agreements, rights of access, pricing, bundling, etc. In addition, of course, major M&A activity is subject to competition scrutiny. Our team of competition lawyers, with specialist experience across a range of jurisdictions, both in Europe and beyond, has an impressive record of acting for some of the leading players in the sector, and for new entrants.
Exploitation and protection of rights
We have extensive experience in the area of the acquisition, promotion and exploitation of IP rights in the communications sector, as well as in protecting clients against third party claims, and against third party infringements of IP rights, using courts, tribunals and other dispute resolution mechanisms. We are also able to develop product liability risk management programmes to avoid or reduce potential exposure and costs. Much of our work has an international focus and we have advised on IP matters across Europe, Middle East and Asia.
We also have expertise in e-commerce, m-commerce, B2B and B2C exchanges, software development, data protection, broadcasting and event sponsorship.
Our international outsourcing group is widely recognised as being among the leaders in its field. It has advised on many outsourcing transactions impacting the telecommunications market, including the outsourcing of call centres, back office functions, managed networks and the management and operation of technology platforms. Known for its proactive approach and sensitivity to the commercial drivers, the cross-disciplinary team draws on many years of practical and industry experience in the telecommunications sector, combined with a deep understanding of the related legal and regulatory issues, in advising on outsourcing transactions. Because the team has in depth experience of acting both for customers and providers, it can offer its clients not only the highest level of legal expertise, but real commercial know-how on market practices and approaches that help minimise risk and maximise value.