·         June 2011

·         Project Finance

In this section we analyse the findings of our research in greater depth to identify the firms and practitioners who stand out worldwide.


Most highly regarded individuals



Philip Fletcher

Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy, London

Cyril Shroff

Amarchand & Mangaldas & Suresh A Shroff & Co, Mumbai

Bimal Desai

Allen & Overy, Dubai

Harold Moore

Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP, New York

Arthur Scavone

White & Case LLP, New York

Alan Rae Smith

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, London

Frederic Rich

Sullivan & Cromwell LLP, New York

Phillip Cornwell

Allens Arthur Robinson, Sydney

Jonathan Rod

Latham & Watkins LLP, New York

Anne Baldock

Allen & Overy LLP, London

Our research uncovers 433 highly recommended project finance specialists. Below we highlight a selection of names that receive gleaming industry praise.


Clifford Chance has an impressive 23 practitioners listed – a solid increase on last year’s 19. Paris-based, Anthony Giustini is “first-tier” for energy and infrastructure projects. A “very strong” trio feature from the London office, including “eminent practitioner” Russell Wells who receives further recognition for his oil and gas expertise. The firm’s strongest contingent in our research is in Dubai where four names are highly recommended, including the “outstanding” Peter Avery and Robin Abraham. Stephen Harder receives “top marks” in China and in Russia Bleddyn Phillips is a “go-to name”.

Allen & Overy LLP also performs excellently again this year. Twenty-three names are included from 13 offices worldwide. The “unbelievably good” Bimal Desai is a familiar name in our project finance research. Listing in our top 10 practitioners year on year, clients and peers praise his “remarkable calibre”. He is joined in the UAE by Duncan Macnab whose “sterling reputation” receives sweeping praise. London-based global head of the firm’s PFI/PPP group Anne Baldock is “tremendous” and performed exceptionally well in our research. In Paris Tim Scales is “top-notch”. In New York, Robert Kartheiser is “excellent” and in the words of one source, “an absolute must for the inclusion”. Managing partner of the firm’s Tokyo office Aled Davies is “a strong choice for complex financing agreements”.

Eighteen names are selected from White & Case LLP, five of whom are based in the firm’s New York office. Arthur Scavone is a “leader in the field” whose “fantastic work lives up to his outstanding reputation”. Troy Alexander is “superb”; notable recent transactions include representing Bayonne Energy Center, a joint venture of Hess Corporation and affiliates of ArcLight Capital Partners, in its development, construction and project financing of a 512 MW natural gas-fired, simple-cycle power generation facility. In London, Philip Stopford is “absolutely terrific”, Jason Kerr is praised for his “great client service and depth of knowledge” and Peter Finlay is recommended “without hesitation”. The “very accomplished” Ken Hawkes adds to the firm’s expertise in Singapore.

Fourteen industry experts feature from Latham & Watkins LLP. William Voge is a name that needs no introduction, hailed as “legendary in the field” by leading sources. Joining him in London, Simon Dickens is “world->

Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy LLP has 12 listings in this guide. Phillip Fletcher is the most highly nominated practitioner in our research and leads the firm’s “talented” global project finance practice group from the London office. A “tremendously knowledgeable and impressive lawyer”, contributors praise his “outstanding depth of expertise”. Cathy Marsh is “a pleasure to work with”, “sharp and effective, and always on point” and John Dewar “really knows his stuff”. New York’s Richard Brach is a “star” and Jonathan Green a “go-to name” for lenders in a wide range of domestic financings and green-field projects, and further commended for his work in Latin America. In Japan, Gary Wigmore’s “ability to master highly technical issues” stands out.

Twelve names are also included from Linklaters LLP. Clive Ransome is a “leading name” on the London market. Sources “never hear anything but good things about” Bruce White, Stuart Salt is an “utterly brilliant”, “first choice” name, and Fiona Hobbs is “very, very good indeed”. Pedro Siza Vieira is recommended in Portugal and in France, and Bertrand Andriani is a “key player”. Consultant to the firm in Dubai, Jonathan Inman is “fantastic”.

Nine Shearman & Sterling LLP practitioners score very highly in our research. Shanghai-based Andrew Ruff is “terrific” and has over 10 years’ experience working on the financing of Chinese infrastructure projects. Philip Dundas Jr and Iain Elder “have a great client following” in the UAE and in New York, the “first-rate” Cynthia Urda Kassis receives gleaming industry recognition. Nicholas Buckworth is a “heavyweight for project finance”, possessing a depth of infrastructure, oil and gas, energy, power and petrochemicals expertise. Notable instructions include advising Bechtel as sponsor in relation to the £4 billion financing of the upgrade and maintenance of the London Underground and the lenders on the Shuweihat S1 IWPP - 1500MW power generation and 100MIGD water desalination facility in Abu Dhabi. Bill McCormack is a “very strong performer” in Singapore. Clients recommend Kenneth MacRitchie as a “leading light for complex upstream projects”, praised by one in particular: “his professionalism, deep industry knowledge and ability to make the most difficult of legal issues simple to solve and understand was a key driver in the transaction successfully closing. I would be more than happy to recommend him to any of my colleagues as the go-to man for oil and gas financing”.

Eight names are included from Ashurst LLP. John Inglis and Mark Elsey are two “fine practitioners” on the London market, David Wadham is an “eminent lawyer” in the UAE and in Tokyo, and John McClenahan enjoys an “excellent reputation” as a “first choice” for local clients.

Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP has seven partner inclusions. Harold Moore is a “dean of the Bar” and held in the highest regard, as one leading source describes: “he would be my top choice to work with”. Joining him on the list in New York, Julia Czarniak is praised internationally again this year. Washington, DC-based Martin Klepper is a name peers “would not hesitate to recommend”.

Six names are included from Norton Rose LLP. Head of global projects group and banking expert Jeffrey Barratt has over 20 years’ experience leading teams on major international projects. Anne Lapierre is well recognised on the French market and Nigel Ward is highly recommended in China.


Chadbourne & Parke LLP features prominently in our US findings with eight practitioners making the grade. Chaim Wachsberger is applauded as “one of the best in the industry” and Peter Fitzgerald is highly recommended in DC.  

Edward Zaelke and Adam Umanoff recently joined the Los Angeles office of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP and stand out for their wind energy expertise.

Frederic Rich at Sullivan & Cromwell LLP has 30 years’ experience in the field, during which he has amassed a “breathtaking client and projects portfolio” acting in formative mining, metals, energy and infrastructure projects in emerging markets. Two further highly regarded names join him on the list.

In Canada, Stikeman Elliott LLP’s Michael Allen is a “first-tier practitioner”. Paul Martin at Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP is a “very smart, practical lawyer” according to clients and peers. Brian Kelsall at Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP “can always be relied upon for his expert know-how” and at Davis LLP, Doug Buchanan QC is a “star player”.

Mallesons Stephen Jaques has the largest contingent in our Australian research – five lawyers feature again this year including “excellent practitioner” Peter Doyle. A talented trio appears from Allens Arthur Robinson. Philip Cornwell is “one of the best Australia” and among the most highly regarded practitioners in our overall research. Richard Gordon is a favourite with major international financial institutions. John Schembri at Gilbert + Tobin is held in high esteem.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP fields four names, including the “incredible”, former Who’s Who Legal Project Finance lawyer of the year Alan Rae Smith. He is joined on the list by the “exceptional” Nicholas Bliss in London, who is the co-leader of the firm’s global infrastructure and transport group and leads the firm’s PFI/PPP group.

At De Pardieu Brocas Maffei, name partner Antoine Maffei is “renowned for his project finance expertise” in Paris.

Six names are listed from Baker Botts LLP, including the “very effective” Nigel Thompson in the UAE.

Three names feature from Amarchand & Mangaldas & Suresh A Shroff & Co. Managing partner Cyril Shroff is “one of the best” according to respondents and features in our most highly regarded individuals worldwide, Shardul Shroff is a “dean of the Indian Bar” and L Viswanathan is “incredibly good”.

Ravi Kulkarni at Khaitan & Co Advocates and Solicitors is “top-flight”. Mohit Saraf and Rajiv Luthra are “stand out names” at Luthra & Luthra Law Offices.

Alan Rodgers at Hadef & Partners has “terrific experience in the Middle East”, undertaking significant water, power and sewage infrastructure projects in the region. In Saudi Arabia, Ali Abedi at Hatem Abbas Ghazzawi & Co is internationally recognised.

Three names are included from Marval O’Farrell & Mairal in Argentina where Santiago Carregal in particular is highlighted for his “depth of financing expertise”.

Souza Cescon Barrieu & Flesch Advogados has three listings in Brazil where Luis Antonio Semeghini de Souza has an “excellent reputation”. At Pinheiro Guimarães – Advogados, Francisco José Pinheiro Guimarães and Plinio Pinheiro Guimarães N are two “leading names”.


Jose Ribeiro do Prado Jr from Machado Meyer Sendacz e Opice Advogados is “a very active, solid adviser” and in Chile, Claro y Cía’s José María Eyzaguirre B is a “great lawyer”.

(www.whoswholegal.com | Junho de 2011)

(Notícia na Íntegra)