Cleary Gottlieb Among Top Five Most Innovative Firms in Financial Times’ U.S. Innovative Lawyers Report

November 30, 2012

Cleary Gottlieb was ranked among the top five most innovative firms by the Financial Times in its third annual U.S. Innovative Lawyers Report, a survey on the state of innovation in the U.S. legal industry. The firm earned “standout” rankings in the Finance and Litigation categories, and was also “highly commended” and “commended” for its work in the Corporate, IP, Finance and Business of Law categories. Cleary Gottlieb ranked third based on number of points for Legal Innovation, and had the highest total point score for the Finance category. In addition, Lee Buchheit was recognized as one of the ten most Innovative Individuals of 2012 for his work on the Greek debt restructuring.

The research for the report was conducted by RSG Consulting, a legal research group. Each firm was permitted to submit up to three entries in each category and each entry was scored on originality, rationale, and impact. The scores were determined through RSG’s independent research and through client interviews. RSG evaluated 320 submissions from 60 law firms and interviewed more than 400 clients and lawyers.

A summary of Cleary Gottlieb's rankings is below.

FT Law 25: The firm placed fifth in the FT Law 25—a ranking of the top 25 law firms based on overall scores received in all categories.

Finance: The firm’s role in the employment of retroactive collective action clauses to enable Greece to carry out its €206 billion private sector debt restructuring received a “standout” ranking. In addition, Cleary’s role advising a group of eight lenders in designing a structure to refinance $7 billion of Cemex debt received a “highly commended” ranking. The firm received more points than any other firm in this category. Lee Buchheit was quoted in the accompanying article, which focused largely on the firm’s work advising Greece.

Corporate: Cleary Gottlieb received a “highly commended” ranking for its use of a poison pill and an unusual board agreement to defend retailer Family Dollar against a hostile takeover bid from Trian.

IP: The firm received a “commended” ranking for advising Google on its $12.5 billion acquisition of Motorola Mobility, which included the acquisition of a large patent portfolio.

Litigation: The firm’s role in devising an effective strategy to challenge claims and defend financial institutions in the fall-out from the Madoff fraud received a “standout” ranking and was the second-highest scoring matter of the 24 included in this category.

Business of Law: Cleary Gottlieb received a “commended” ranking for its in-house design and implementation of a two-week Mini MBA Program for first year associates. Mention of Cleary Gottlieb's Mini MBA program was also included in the accompanying article for the ethics section.

To view the full report, click HERE.