Managing Partner: Michael Gerstenzang
Number of partners: 175 Number of lawyers: Approximately 1,300
Languages: Multilingual; the firm’s lawyers speak more than 65 different languages.
Cleary Gottlieb is a pioneer in globalizing the legal profession. Since 1946, the firm’s lawyers and staff have worked across practices, industries, jurisdictions and continents to provide clients with simple, actionable approaches to their most complex legal and business challenges.
The firm has 16 offices in major financial centers around the world. However, it operates as a single, integrated global partnership, not a US firm with a network of overseas locations. The firm is fluent in the many languages of local and global business, and its consistent success in multiple jurisdictions earned Cleary Chambers & Partners’ inaugural International Law Firm of the Year award.
The firm employs approximately 1,300 lawyers from more than 50 countries and diverse backgrounds who are admitted to practice in numerous jurisdictions. Cleary was among the first international law firms to hire and promote non-US lawyers as equal partners around the world.
Main Areas of Practice:
Cleary offers clients robust experience in more than 60 practice areas. All clients enjoy access to the full resources of the firm’s offices and lawyers worldwide, and many of its attorneys have served in one or more of the firm’s international locations.
Cleary’s practices are organised in the following areas:
Cleary advises clients on a host of transactional matters that protect and advance their strategic goals. Its lawyers have crafted solutions resulting in a number of first-of-their kind deals, as well as some of the largest, most complex transactions involving cross-border issues. Among other transactional areas, Cleary provides experience in mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures; capital markets, derivatives, structured finance, banking and finance; private equity transactions, private fund formation, privatisations, project finance, real estate and more. Additionally, the team has robust knowledge of the myriad corporate governance, crisis management, intellectual property, tax and executive compensation and related issues that companies and their boards face.
With the increasingly global nature of disputes, Cleary is well positioned to help navigate clients through their most challenging adversarial issues. Firm engagements frequently involve complex legal issues that require novel solutions and cross-border coordination of the firm’s varied resources, allowing Cleary to pair its renowned corporate, regulatory and financial experience with its litigation prowess. Cleary’s practice includes nine former federal prosecutors in the US, as well as several former senior government officials globally, including two recent Acting U.S. Attorneys for the Southern District of New York and the most recent Chief Litigation Counsel for the SEC’s Enforcement Division. Cleary handles litigation and arbitration involving a wide variety of issues, such as securities, derivative litigation, M&A, sovereign debt, investment treaties, antitrust, bankruptcy, white-collar crime, employment, executive compensation, intellectual property and general commercial disputes.
The global regulatory landscape is ever-changing, and Cleary lawyers continue to draw upon a breadth of experience to proactively advise clients on emerging issues, as well as respond to increasing regulatory scrutiny related to transactions or in connection with potential risks that can lead to litigation or enforcement action. The firm has significant experience in areas such as anti-corruption, antitrust, compliance issues unique to financial institutions, cybersecurity and privacy, executive compensation and ERISA, environmental law, international trade and tax. The firm's global team includes a former Director and Deputy Director of the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Competition, two former Deputy Assistant Attorneys General of the U.S. Justice Department’s Antitrust Division, the former Deputy Director General of the European Commission DG for Competition, and two former General Counsel of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
Industries & Regions:
Cleary applies its capabilities in these areas to provide integrated services to clients in a range of industries, from banking and financial institutions, natural resources and technology to private equity, real estate, and manufacturing. With its rich history as a preeminent international law firm working on complex cross-border issues, the firm’s lawyers also advise companies based in or doing business in different jurisdictions worldwide, including emerging markets. Notably, the firm’s Latin America practice was founded over 60 years ago, and today features more than 120 lawyers firm-wide, principally in the New York, Washington, D.C., Buenos Aires and São Paulo offices.