On an annual basis, Chambers & Partners conducts extensive research and thorough data analysis in compiling their objective list of recommended worldwide legal practitioners. In the regional review of leading firms in "Banking & Finance: Chicago," Kirkland & Ellis ranked fifth. This ranking reflects the opinion of the marketplace as revealed by Chambers' systematic and objective research.
Chicago Ranking: 5
The Firm: The firm has capitalized on its huge base of public company clients to build a strong team known for "concentrating on corporate representation" in financial transactions. In recent years the group has won a small but steady stream of senior bank representation for First Union and Bank of America (through relationship with the former Continental Illinois). For mezzanine finance the team is regular counsel for the whole range of Chicago banks including Bankers Trust (now Deutsche Bank), First Union and First Chicago (now Bank One). The firm has great experience advising on the finance side of its leading national LBO practice, reviewing the senior bank documentation together with any mezzanine or bridge loan facilities. Private bond financing for such transactions are handled by the banking group, while the terms of the instrument and covenants, public bond financing and 144A placements are handled by the corporate finance group. Financing for LBO clients has involved the London office of U.S. lawyers where two senior assistants are concentrating on the U.S. financing of clients active in Europe such as Citicorps Venture Capital. Close relations with several leading firms in the UK and Canada have provided a steady flow of referral work for foreign banks on foreign loan agreements with a U.S. element. A separate securitization group of three partners and six associates has numerous clients ranging from GMAC to Bank One and Navistar. Bankruptcy work is heavier on the dispute side, which is handled from the litigation department, although the team does act on the renegotiation of company loans.
The Clients: Deutsche Bank, First Union, Bank One, Bank of Scotland, HSBC, Toronto Dominion, Société Générale, General Motors Corp., GMAC.
Reprinted with permission from Chambers Global: The World's Leading Lawyers 2000-2001.