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GAR 100 - 4th Edition

Bird & Bird

18 February 2011

New in 2011. Bird & Bird has emerged as one of the leading practices in sports and IP disputes, and is regularly recognised as such by rankings organisations.

People in Who’s Who:
50*
Pending cases as counsel:
33
Value of pending counsel work:
US$2.5 billion
Treaty cases:
0
Current arbitrator appointments:
18 (of which 18 are as sole or chair)
No. of lawyers sitting as arbitrator:
14

Partner Trevor Cook recently co-wrote (with Alejandro Garcia, a former Bird & Bird associate) a UK guide to international IP arbitration. The firm’s sports law practice – spearheaded by Jonathan Taylor – has represented the Football League in England and Wales and the International Tennis Federation. The international arbitration group started taking on its current shape with the arrival of Jane Player and Sarah Walker in 2002. Both were senior figures in disputes work at Dibb Lupton Alsop.

Who uses it?

The firm enjoys a strong client base in the telecoms, media, aviation and aerospace. It is currently representing Canadian mining company Archangel Diamond in an ad hoc arbitration in Stockholm. The claim is against a subsidiary of Lukoil. It’s also representing one of largest manufacturers and suppliers of microlight aircraft in a multi-party arbitration relating to insurance coverage, arising from Mexico. The firm is also acting for an Indian pay-television operator in a major arbitration in Singapore over rights to broadcast international cricket matches.

Network

Bird & Bird’s international network spans 21 countries in Europe and Asia, but the major centres of the arbitration practice are London, Madrid, and Stockholm. In Asia, the firm now has a tie-in with the respected local firm Alban Tay Mahtani & de Silva. In addition, the firm recently opened four offices in central Europe. It now has a well-established arbitration practice in Poland.

Recent events

In London, the firm has benefited from the arrival of a Spanish associate, Antonio Delgado, who joined from Uría Menéndez having previously worked at B Cremades y Asociados in Madrid. Recently the firm organised a conference in London on dispute resolution in the film and media industry. It focused on the procedures offered by the World International Property Organization.

Client comment

Wolf von Kumberg, assistant general counsel at Northrop Grumman, is full of praise for Bird & Bird, which his company retained in a recent insurance dispute “that was critical to the business”. He described the team of lawyers as “young, keen, knowledgeable and flexible”, adding that he would definitely recommend them to others. Meanwhile Frank Landolt, vice president of intellectual property and legal at Belgian pharmaceutical company Ablynx said simply, “we wanted the best, and that is what we got.”

*estimated (excludes WIPO cases. )

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