Kirkland & Ellis was the leading legal adviser globally for mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in the first quarter (Q1) of 2020 in the oil & gas sector, according to GlobalData.

The American law firm topped the rankings with a deal value of $4.9bn, by advising on four deals during the period. Allen & Overy stood at second position with $4.7bn earned on advising three deals.

Baker Botts occupied third place with five deals worth $3.3bn.

Kirkland & Ellis stood at fifth position in the GlobalData’s Q1 2020 ranking of top 20 legal advisers for global M&A.

GlobalData has published a top ten league table of legal advisers ranked according to the value of announced M&A deals globally. If the value remains the same for multiple advisers, the deal volume is given weightage.

The oil & gas sector saw a 12% decrease in deal value from $43.5bn in Q1 2019 to $25.7bn in Q1 2020. Deal volume declined by 32.56% from 516 to 348.

Aurojyoti Bose, Financial Deals Analyst at GlobalData, says: “Involvement in big-ticket deals helped Kirkland & Ellis occupy the top spot. It also stood at fourth position in terms of volume. Seven out of the top ten advisers by value also made it to the list of top ten advisers by volume.”

Baker Botts tops by volume

Baker Botts was the top M&A legal adviser for the oil and gas sector based on deal volume in Q1 2020, having advised on five deals worth $3.3bn.

With five transactions worth $3.1bn, Jones Day occupied the second spot, followed by Vinson & Elkins with five deals US$270m.

Bose adds: “Baker Botts, which led in terms of volume, also occupied the third position in terms of value. The top list by volume and value had many players in common. Only three out of the top ten advisers by volume failed to make it to the list of top ten advisers by value.”

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.