Allen & Overy
|Allen & Overy|
|Headquarters||London, United Kingdom|
|No. of offices||42 worldwide in 29 countries|
|No. of lawyers||approximately 2,700|
|No. of employees||approximately 5,077|
|Major practice areas||General practice|
|Date founded||1 January 1930|
|Company type||Limited liability partnership|
A member of the UK's Magic Circle of leading law firms, Allen & Overy is widely considered to be one of the world's elite law firms, advising national and multinational corporations, financial institutions, and governments.
Since its founding in 1930, Allen & Overy has grown to become one of the largest law firms in the world, both by number of lawyers and revenue. With approximately over 5,000 staff including over 500 partners in 42 offices worldwide, the firm provides legal advice in Europe, the Americas, Asia, Australia, Africa and the Middle East.
In 2008, former managing partner David Morley was elected Senior Partner while Wim Dejonghe became A&O's Global Managing Partner.
Allen & Overy was founded in the City of London on 1 January 1930 by George Allen and Thomas Overy, formerly partners at Roney & Co. The main purpose was to build a commercial practice. The firm's reputation was made as a result of George Allen's role as advisor to King Edward VIII during the abdication crisis of 1936. By the time the Second World War broke out in 1939, Allen & Overy had firmly established itself as a leading City law firm.
Over the years, Allen & Overy has been involved in many developments in the legal field. Such work has included advising on the first hostile takeover in the City of London and acting for S. G. Warburg & Co. The firm arranged the first Eurobond (issued by Italian motorway group Autostrada) in the 1960s. Some say that the Eurobond issue in 1963 was the single most important transaction in its history.
The Eurobond transaction significantly diversified A&O's practice from a purely commercial into commercial and financial firm. Through the 1970s the firm's finance and corporate practice grew in the UK and internationally.
Although now a global player, the firm was quite international from the outset, advising mostly Canadian banks and companies. In the last 15 years, Allen & Overy has opened offices in international financial centres, branching out into newly emerging markets.
In May 2004, the worldwide partnership of Allen & Overy converted to a limited liability partnership, Allen & Overy LLP, which works together with associated undertakings in some jurisdictions to form a worldwide legal practice. In July 2008 Allen & Overy broke the £1 billion turnover mark, and, for the first time, over half of its turnover was generated outside of London. Also in that year, Allen & Overy opened five new offices in Riyadh, Abu Dhabi, Mannheim, Düsseldorf and São Paulo, and announced a new association in Romania. The firm also announced a referral arrangement with Trilegal in India. 
A&O built a sizable local law practice in Japan following the easing of restrictions on foreign law firms in 2005, and at its peak employed 30 Japanese attorneys in its Tokyo office, but reduced this team to five in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis.
In 2010 A&O hit the headlines for offering full equity partners the option to work part-time. The move was hailed as a 'watershed moment' for the legal sector. It is believed to be the first scheme of its kind by any major international law firm. In the same year, expanded into Australia for the first time, opening offices in Sydney and Perth.
In 2011 Allen & Overy became the first global law firm to open a Moroccan office, located in Casablanca. This plan was announced shortly before rivals Clifford Chance and Norton Rose followed suit. Their latest expansion has seen the firm open offices in Istanbul, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.
Some of the firm's notable personalities include two Lord Mayors of London, David Wootton and Sir Christopher Walford who was the seventh solicitor since records began in 1730 to become Lord Mayor. He also became the fifth person in A&O's history to receive a knighthood.
Main Practices & Sectors
Infrastructure and Transport
Mining and Metals
Telecommunications, Media and Technology
Over the years Allen & Overy has built its international presence and network to 42 offices in 29 countries. Most recently the opening of offices in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Casablanca and Istanbul.
Allen & Overy has a network of relationship law firms in 100 countries around the world.
Awards & Rankings
− Law firm of the year 2011, British Legal Awards 2011
− FT Innovative Lawyers – Most innovative law firm 2011 & 2012
− Most Innovative international firm, Euromoney Women in Business Law Awards 2011
− Law Firm of the Year 2010 – Infrastructure Journal 2011
− Law Firm of the Year 2010 – PFI Awards 2011
− Global Infrastructure Firm of the Year 2010 – Infrastructure Investor 2011
− Transatlantic Elite 2011 Tier 1 – The Lawyer
− Graduate Employer of Choice for Law 2011 – The Times
− Graduates’ Preferred Employer in the Legal Sector 2011 – The Guardian
− Legal Week Student Survey: most prestigious international law firm 2011
− Best Recruiter – Large City Firm – LawCareers.net awards 2011
− Business in the Community Big Tick and Highly Commended (runner-up) in the National Example of Excellence for the Smart Start Experience
in the Work Inspiration Award category
− Business in the Community Big Tick for the Microfinance Working Group in the Coffey International Award category (reaccreditation)
− Hungarian Law Firm of the Year – International Financial Law Review; European Awards 2011
− Frankfurt: Law Firm of the Year for Banking and Finance – JUVE- Awards 2011
− Belgian Commercial Litigation Law Firm of the Year – Finance Monthly – Law Awards 2011
− Mudarabah Deal of the Year 2010 – ENOC AED1.1bn Mudaraba Financing Facility – Islamic Finance Magazine
− Qatar Deal of the Year 2010 – Qatar Islamic Bank USD750m Sukuk – Islamic Finance Magazine
− United Arab Emirates Deal of the Year 2010 – Emirates Steel – USD367m syndication – Islamic Finance Magazine
− EMEA Finance's Best Law Firm in Africa award for 2011 and 2012
− China – international firm of the year – Chambers Asia Pacific Awards 2011
− North America Infrastructure Firm of the Year – Infrastructure Investor 2011
− Luxembourg Tax Firm of the Year – ITR European Tax Awards 2010
Practice & Sector awards
− EuroBond of the year – International Finance Review Awards 2011 (Deal Unicredit Hybrid Tier 1 – Craig Byrne, Cristiano Tommasi, Francesco Bonichi, Claudio D'Auria)
− Law firm of the year for banking & finance, JUVE awards 2011
− Law Firm of the Year 2010 – Finance Monthly Law Awards 2011
− M&A Team of the Year – IFLR Middle East Awards 2011
− M&A team of the year – IFLR Asialaw India awards 2011
− Global Law Firm of the Year – Project Finance International, 2010
− Middle East Oil and Gas Deal of the Year 2010 (Tamar) – PFI Awards 2011
− IP Law Firm of the Year – IPM Awards 2011
− Patent Law Firm of the Year – IPM Awards 2011
− Best in Commercial Arbitration, Euromoney Women in Business Law Awards 2011
− IPO Deal of the Year 2010 – Sabana S$533m REIT – Islamic Finance Magazine
− Real Estate Deal Of the Year 2010 – Sabana S$533m REIT – Islamic Finance Magazine
− Luxembourg tax team of the year – International Tax Review awards 2011"
Corporate Social Responsibility
Allen & Overy has an extensive global pro bono and community affairs programme, which in 2011, undertook 44,945 hours of pro bono and CSR work, with a value of over GBP15 million.
In 2009 A&O launched the Smart Start Experience – the largest programme undertaken in the UK by a law firm to broaden access to top professions for young people from socially disadvantaged backgrounds. The scheme was praised in the UK Government's report on Fair Access to the Profession s, and was profiled widely on BBC News and BBC Radio 4's The World Tonight programme. In 2010 the scheme won a prestigious Lord Mayor's Dragon Award, which celebrates community investment in London.
Allen & Overy held a three-year relationship with the Red Cross, during that time A&O contributed to the development of a new Model Law on disaster relief as well as raised and donated over £600,000 for the Red Cross's work around the world.
Allen & Overy has a global charity partnership with Afrikids which was formally launched in May 2012.
In 2011 Allen & Overy LLP controversially opened an office in Belfast, Northern Ireland with assistance from Invest NI. This resulted in 250 jobs in London being moved to Belfast. This was mainly in the Document Production, HR, Finance, IT and facilities departments. Unusually their telephone switchboard is now no longer in the City and is instead answered in Belfast.
- "The Transatlantic Elite | Features". The Lawyer. 10 May 2008. Retrieved 2011-11-12.
- "The Global 100: Most Revenue 2009". American Lawyer. Retrieved 13 August 2010.
- "The job came about through serendipity. During World War I, Allen served in France and saved another officer... That officer was Walter Monckton, a leading barrister... Monckton and Allen subsequently struck up a friendship and it was this relationship that would give Allen & Overy its big break over a decade later." 'A brief history of Allen & Overy'
- "The Times: Allen & Overy's £1billion turnover confirms London as centre of the legal world". The Times. Retrieved 2011-11-12.
- "Allen & Overy half-year results up 11 per cent". The Times (UK). 8 November 2008.
- Lind, Sofia (25 February 2008). "Allen & Overy Signs Indian Referral Deal". The Times (UK).
- Brennan, Tom (15 July 2013). "Foreign Firms Stumble Going Local in Japan". The Asian Lawyer. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
- Spence, Alex (8 February 2010). "Allen & Overy opens in Australia". The Times (London).
- Allen & Overy website
- Allen & Overy Annual Review
- Allen & Overy facts and figures
- Allen & Overy expertise
- Allen & Overy careers
- Allen & Overy news