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Freshfields in the Netherlands

We help clients grow their business, strengthen their position and defend themselves from attack.

This could be handling a transaction, navigating regulation or protecting corporate reputation. Or it could be juggling all three. Whichever combination it is, we can help.

Our clients value our ability to understand – and effectively manage – the interplay between these needs. Considering the bigger picture is central to how we work. The challenges our clients face don’t fit with the artificial boundaries of other law firms’ practice teams.

Wherever clients operate, we give legal advice that is technically excellent, commercially minded and tailored to the situation at hand. Our knowledge of Dutch law combined within the latest deal structures means clients get the best advice when and where it matters most.

We help clients grow – in the past five years, we have worked on cross-border deals worth more than $1tn, more than any other law firm.

Client successes

Ajinomoto’s technology is heavily patented and, because of our long and successful track-record with the company, the Netherlands has become Ajinomoto’s go-to forum for patent litigation.

There are now three cases pending, concerning different technologies, patents and companies.

We advised NN Group on its:

  • all-cash public offer and related acquisition financings in respect of Delta Lloyd for €2.5bn, a deal that forms a leading insurance and asset management company in the Netherlands;
  • acquisition (together with Athora) of Vivat, a leading Dutch insurance business, including the subsequent carve-out of Vivat’s non-life business and its acquisition by NN Group. This won the ‘Best Deal of the Year’ award at the annual Dutch M&A awards event in 2019.

The consortium consisted of PAI Partners, a leading European private equity firm, and the existing majority shareholder Charles Jobson. Total consideration was around €885m. Royal Wessanen is a European leader in healthy, organic and sustainable food.   

Van Leeuwen is a leading supplier of pipes and fittings. The international distribution division of BENTELER International, BENTELER Distribution is active in 24 countries and gives Van Leeuwen access to further markets in Europe. The transaction won the ‘Best Mid-Market Deal of the Year’ award at the annual Dutch M&A awards event in 2019.

As part of the restructuring process, Freshfields assisted with a New-York-law-governed bridge financing, a Dutch insolvency process with the involvement of a silent administrator, a pre-pack M&A transaction, and a full restructuring and new financing of the Getronics group.