Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr has been ranked in nine practice areas and has achieved a Tier 1 ranking in five practice areas as well as 17 individual special mentions, nine of them new, in the Legal 500 Europe Middle East and Africa (EMEA) 2010 edition.
Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr achieved Tier 1 rankings for the Corporate/M&A - Johannesburg and Cape Town; Dispute Resolution; Mining; and Projects and Infrastructure practice areas. The firm was ranked as Tier 1 for the first time in the Corporate/M&A - Cape Town practice area. Another achievement was the ranking of our Intellectual Property practice and practice head, Eben van Wyk, alongside the likes of DM Kisch.
Legal 500 is an independent publication that provides comprehensive worldwide coverage currently available on legal services providers, in over 100 countries. Through an intensive research process, Legal 500 interviews clients around the world who are referred to them by the lawyers they are researching. Rankings are awarded based on firm and lawyer track records and client feedback.
Individuals with special mention
Andre de Lange
Ian Hayes (two mentions)
Eben van Wyk
Practice area rankings
Corporate/M&A - Johannesburg - Tier 1
Of the firm's Corporate/M&A- Johannesburg practice, the Legal 500 report had this to say: "DLA Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr retains considerable gravitas through senior figures such as Chris Ewing and Ian Hayes. The team is highly reputed for corporate, commercial and competition matters, and is one of the main players in the mining industry. The firm has an exceptionally strong record in BEE deals, including acting for various groups in acquiring a minority stake in Vodacom. The firm is also highly regarded for major corporate restructurings."
Corporate/M&A - Cape Town - Tier 1
"DLA Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr's Cape Town office is now regarded as a leading force in the region. In August 2009, a team led by Andre de Lange completed Remgro's R3.5bn takeover of Venfin, one of many high-value transactions for the firm. The office is also well known for its black economic empowerment (BEE) expertise. David Thompson heads the department."
Dispute Resolution - Tier 1
"DLA Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr has a multi-talented and high-quality dispute resolution practice. Jonathan Witts-Hewinson is a renowned all-round litigator and frequent counsel to major corporates and financial institutions. Sam Oosthuizen is commended for banking and financial services (including insurance) litigation. Department head Pieter Conradie is also recommended for multi-jurisdictional disputes, while Terry Winstanley is one of the jurisdiction's foremost environmental disputes specialists."
Mining - Tier 1
"DLA Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr has a prodigious mining client portfolio. Recent transactions illustrate the firm's excellent standing, with department head Ian Hayes leading the team that advised Anooraq Resources Corporation on its R3.6bn BEE deal with Anglo Platinum, in which it gained 51% of Lebowa Platinum Mines and a further 1% share of the Ga-Phasha Development Project."
Projects and Infrastructure - Tier 1
"DLA Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr's connections to government and public sector institutions in South Africa and across the continent have served it well in recent years, particularly in terms of PPP instructions. In 2009, it advised the Road Development Agency of Mauritius in connection with its ring road and harbour bridge PPP. Kieran Whyte is recommended for power projects."
Banking & Finance - Tier 2
Clients have 'great confidence' in the abilities of DLA Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr thanks to its excellent track record in the banking and finance sector. The firm has demonstrated broad capabilities in major transactions such as acting for Transnet in its R6.5bn club loan funding, and HSBC in connection with financing the acquisition of a fleet of 700 buses in the Rea Vaya Johannesburg Rapid Transit System. Infrastructure and project finance is a key strength of the team, which also has extensive experience of ECA-backed financings. Joz Coetzer has an excellent reputation.
Labour & Employment - Tier 2
"DLA Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr has maintained a sizeable department with excellent credentials. Johannesburg-based Aadil Patel and Faan Coetzee head the team, which also features Cape Town director Gillian Lumb. The firm is well known for its contentious expertise particularly in relation to disputes with trade unions. It recently represented Eksom in a trade union dispute, which involved the threat of industrial action. Other clients include Dell Computers and British American Tobacco."
Tax - Tier 2
"DLA Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr has steadily improved its profile in the tax environment, through ever more prestigious instructions and a series of lateral hires including Emil Brincker and Natalie Napier from Edward Nathan Sonnenbergs Inc. The firm has a broad tax practice, which includes specialist areas such as customs and excise as well as seamless cross-border services through its international network. Much of its work relates to corporate mergers and acquisitions, including BEE deals, for which the firm has a leading reputation. Justin Liebenberg is highly rated."
Intellectual Property - Tier 3
"DLA Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr's IP department is evenly split between its Johannesburg and Cape Town offices. The firm has a strong domestic and foreign multinational client base and impressively wide-ranging expertise covering disputes, portfolio management, corporate transactions and due diligence, and advertising. In 2009, it represented Reckitt Benckiser in the Final Appeal Committee of the Advertising Standards Authority in a dispute with Colgate Palmolive relating to Reckitt's Dettol hand wash product. Cape Town-based Eben van Wyk heads the department."