GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, has revealed its global league tables for top 10 legal advisers in retail sector by value and volume for 2021 in its report, ‘Global and Retail M&A Report Legal Adviser League Tables 2021’.

According to GlobalData’s M&A report, a total of 2,047 merger and acquisition (M&A) deals were announced in the sector during 2021, while deal value for the sector increased by 33.9% from $162.2bn in 2020 to $217.2bn in 2021.

Top advisers by value and volume

Ashurst and Latham & Watkins were the top M&A legal advisers in the retail sector for 2021 by value and volume, respectively.

Ashurst advised on seven deals worth $27.8bn, while Latham & Watkins advised on 23 deals worth $11.2bn.

GlobalData lead analyst Aurojyoti Bose said: “Latham & Watkins, despite leading by volume, was unable to secure a ranking among the top 10 legal advisers by value. Due to its involvement in relatively low-value transactions, the firm lagged behind its peers in terms of value.

“In contrast, Ashurst, despite advising on even less than one-third of the number of deals advised by Latham & Watkins, managed to top the list by value due to its involvement in big-ticket deals. The average deal size of transactions advised by Ashurst was $4 billion, while it was just $487.5 million for Latham & Watkins.”

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld got the second position in terms of value, with one deal worth $21bn, followed by Herbert Smith Freehills, with four deals worth $20.9bn, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, with 11 deals worth $17.2bn and Allen & Overy, with 15 deals worth $17bn.

Kirkland & Ellis secured the second position in terms of volume, with 22 deals worth $3.5bn, followed by Baker McKenzie, with 21 deals worth $4.2bn, Jones Day, with 19 deals worth $16bn and CMS, with 18 deals worth $891m.

GlobalData’s league tables are based on the real-time tracking of thousands of company websites, advisory firm websites and other reliable sources available on the secondary domain. A dedicated team of analysts monitors all these sources to gather in-depth details for each deal, including adviser names.

To ensure further robustness to the data, the company also seeks submissions from leading advisers, through adviser submission forms on GlobalData’s website.