Manchester law firm Fieldfisher has maintained its status as a leading legal adviser to UK-listed companies, preserving its ranking as the top law firm by AIM deal volume in H1 2020 according to the latest ECMi market data from Acuris.
Fieldfisher was also ranked third by overall ECM deal activity in H1, encompassing transactions on both AIM and the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange.
The firm’s performance over the first six months of 2020 follows an equally strong 2019, when Fieldfisher’s ECM team was ranked number one by deal volume on AIM and advised on deals worth in excess of £1.7 billion. Since 2008, the firm has acted on more AIM IPOs than any other law firm according to Mergermarket data.
Fieldfisher’s Band 1 ranked ECM team has been particularly busy during the pandemic, especially in the life sciences sector and recently acting on a £40 million fundraising for AIM-quoted specialist services group Marlowe PLC, a client of Fieldfisher Manchester corporate partner, David Bowcock, which completed five acquisitions during lockdown.
In its report, Acuris noted that the UK’s Covid-19 lockdown measures, which came into force on 23 March 2020, “had a dramatic impact on share prices, and the structure and frequency of UK ECM transactions during H1 2020”.
While deal volume was negatively impacted, in terms of value, both AIM and the Main Market recorded significant increases from H1 2019. AIM total deal value grew by £899 million, a 38.66% increase, while the Main Market raised £5,780 million more, a rise of 40.3% over H1 2019.
Commenting on the H1 2020 rankings of Fieldfisher’s equity capital markets team, Fieldfisher Manchester partner David Bowcock said:
“While the Covid-19 lockdown has been extremely challenging for many businesses, others have seen this as an opportunity to accelerate fundraising and M&A plans.
“We have been encouraged by the number of clients eager to conduct ECM transactions in the first half of this year and are tentatively looking forward to a strong pipeline of deals for the remainder of 2020.”