About Us

Find out what you’re made of.

Who we are

We’re a pre-eminent global law firm, operating in twenty nine countries around the world.

Our track record of innovation is second to none. We’re the only firm to have won the Financial Times Innovative Law Firm Awards six times. From our expansion into new jurisdictions, flexible working via iFlex, and our alternative resourcing options such as Peerpoint and aosphere, we are setting the standard for what a global law firm should look like.

We offer a supportive and collaborative environment, dedicated to delivering an exceptional standard of work for our clients. We’re ambitious and future-focused, committed to growing our business and meeting the future head-on. In this year alone, we have promoted 29 new partners around the globe and 45 counsel. We’re not afraid of change – we embrace it, together. 

We’re proud to have the resources, the passion and the collaborative mind-set to build solutions for the future, whatever it may hold.

What we do

Belong to the firm at the cutting edge.

We are a global firm with a global presence. With a network of thousands of experts across 29 countries, we work on some of the biggest deals in the corporate world. This international network is just one of our strengths that defines us and sets us apart.

Collaborating across seven global practices means that we have the skills and experience to handle complex, worldwide deals; over half of our transactions involve three or more jurisdictions, and nearly three-quarters of the work we do draws on the resources of two or more of our offices.

Throughout our ninety-year history, we’ve led the market by finding new ways of meeting the challenges that our clients face. Delivering the essential solutions that they rely on takes our collective legal and business expertise, our network of over 150 Peerpoint consultants and the innovative technologies that we use, such as our margin matrix and Legal Services Centre.

Wherever your ambitions lie, we’ll provide you with the support, guidance and resources you need to make a difference – within the firm, the legal industry and the world around us.

Law explained

Our firm collaborates with clients across the world to solve legal matters, our expertise span across a wide range of practices and sectors. Find out more about the type and scale of work we do.

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Banking

Our banking practice has played a leading role in almost every major development in the modern financial markets and, with over 1,000 lawyers worldwide, it’s one of largest in the industry. Few firms can match our top tier position across the full range of finance specialisms. Join us and you’ll work at the heart of the world’s financial markets, advising leading global businesses and institutions on complex transactions and drawing on your experience to deliver commercial advantage for your clients. 

 

Insight: British American Tobacco

We assisted the lead banks on a USD 25 billion acquisition loan facility for British American Tobacco, to back the USD 49.4 billion acquisition of the 57.8% stake in U.S. peer Reynolds American Inc. which it did not already own. This was the largest deal in the European syndicated loan markets in 2017.

Working as a finance lawyer at the market-leading finance firm gives you exposure to a quality of work that is unrivalled among our competitors.”

David Varne
Senior Associate
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Corporate

As part of our global Corporate and M&A practice, you’ll advise some of the world’s most successful companies, commercial and investment banks and private equity firms, on all aspects of commercial law and corporate finance. Mergers and acquisitions are the bedrock of our work; you can expect to tackle everything from public takeovers, private M&A, and international equity offerings, to joint ventures, disposals and corporate restructurings as well as and day-to-day regulatory matters. Our lawyers combine excellent transactional skills with specialist expertise in areas such as antitrust, commercial, environmental, IP, tax, employment and pensions. We were the lead M&A adviser on one of the top five highest value cross-border M&A deals in 2019 (Mergermarket) and fifth globally for cross-border M&A by volume (Bloomberg Q4 2019).

Insight: 21st Century Fox

We supported 21st Century Fox on its USD71 billion acquisition by The Walt Disney Company, in one of the largest global M&A deals to date, and on its GBP27.7bn takeover bid for Sky and the subsequent GBP11.6bn sale of its 39% stake in Sky to Comcast.

As a corporate lawyer at A&O, one thing that truly excites me is the variety and range of work that I can be involved in and the initiatives I can take.

Karishma Naravane
Senior Associate
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International Capital Markets

With over 450 lawyers based all over the world, our ICM Team is one of the largest in the global legal industry. We enjoy a top-tier position across the full range of capital markets products, and we’ve played a big part in almost every major development in our field. Rapidly changing economic, political and regulatory conditions have made the last few years challenging, and we’ve helped clients address the fallout from several sovereign debt crises. As our focus shifts towards big-picture, long-term projects, we increasingly work with colleagues from other practice areas to develop innovative solutions that incorporate complex financing techniques.

Insight: MarginMatrixTM

We developed a market-leading IT solution to help our clients comply with the mandatory variation margin rules that now apply to the USD500 trillion OTC derivatives market. MarginMatrixTM covers regulatory requirements globally, template development, data collection, data scrubbing, negotiations, automatic drafting, delivery of legal opinions and the import of data back on the client’s systems for business as usual. MarginMatrixTM provides process efficiencies and economies of scale that no individual client could match on its own. We acted for eight global investment banks, and between them these eight clients have required over 25,000 negotiations.

Everyone at A&O takes real pride in doing their job well. It creates an inspiring atmosphere.

Francesca Bennetts
Executive Director
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Employment & Benefits

Our Employment & Benefits group is made up of over 180 lawyers, including some of the foremost names in the field, and aims to be the global market leader. We offer advice on matters including boardroom disputes, restraint of trade issues, discrimination, whistleblowing, pensions and executive remuneration and tax, assisting clients before the Employment Tribunal and High Court. Our practice covers non-contentious advisory and M&A support work, and we also work closely with our contentious regulatory colleagues in relation to employee investigations and misconduct in the financial services sector.  If you join us you’ll do high-profile work for household-name clients, in a practice and a firm with a peerless reputation.

Insight: Public restraint of trade dispute

We recently acted for GSK on its high-profile dispute with AstraZeneca over GSK’s recruitment of the Global Head of Pharma. This was the first time two pharmaceutical companies had entered a public restraint of trade dispute. 

People issues are at the top of board agendas, and our clients come to us for strategic insight and guidance on the most sensitive and complex HR matters.

Sarah Henchoz
Partner
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Litigation & Dispute Resolution

As one of the world's leading disputes practices, Allen & Overy has vast experience litigating, arbitrating and resolving corporate and commercial disputes across multiple jurisdictions for some of the world’s leading companies. Our global practice is recognised for protecting clients’ interests across the full range of contentious issues that a multinational business may encounter.

Become part of one of the world’s leading litigation practices and you’ll advise global financial institutions, major corporates, governments, regulators and state bodies, supported by cutting-edge technology and world-class training.

Insight: South Stream Transport

We worked with South Stream Transport, part of Gazprom, in an ICC arbitration with Saipem relating to a gas pipeline from Russia under the Black Sea into Europe. The case was one of the largest construction arbitrations of recent years.

I really enjoy the fight of litigation; strategy, tactics, intensity and especially the highs/lows of winning and losing.‎ There's no feeling quite like it.

Brandon O'Neil
Partner
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Real Estate

A&O’s Real Estate team uses deep legal expertise and broad market knowledge to provide clients with competitive edge. Join us and you’ll help to deliver a full spectrum of services to developers, leading private equity and listed real estate funds and international real estate investors, from construction and sales to finance and litigation, as well as advising on indirect acquisitions and establishing investment funds and joint ventures. You’ll be part of a practice with international reach across our network and a reputation for exceptional work.

Insight: International acquisition

We advised a leading private equity real estate fund and their joint venture partners on their acquisition of a portfolio of shopping centres across Portugal, Spain, Poland and Germany.

Whether you are negotiating a lease, carrying out due diligence on a large property portfolio that is being refinanced or helping co-ordinate a cross-border property acquisition, no two days in real estate are ever the same. The learning curve is a steep but a fulfilling one.

Lucy Goodwin
Associate
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Tax

Our London-based Tax team works alongside colleagues in all jurisdictions to provide cutting-edge advice on the implications of transactions and strategies executed by some of the world’s largest companies and institutions. The work we do is some of the most technical and challenging in our industry; join the team and you can expect to build a broad base of legal knowledge, and to work with international clients and colleagues on a regular basis. 

Insight: A truly varied practice

Whether you are interested in M&A, capital markets, banking, real estate or litigation, the tax team sees it all.  We have a huge variety of work, from helping to structure corporate acquisitions for household name clients to advising on real estate investments in iconic London landmarks, working on innovative capital markets transactions, or litigating against the tax authorities. Add to this the fact that tax law is constantly changing, and life is never dull.

One of the most rewarding things about working in the tax team is the amount of collaboration involved – both within the team and with our colleagues in other departments or jurisdictions. Everyone has an important role to play and these relationships help us deliver the high quality work our clients demand.

Esther Lemmon
Counsel
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