The lowdown (in their own words...)
If the firm were a fictional character it would be...
Clyde & Co has a long history of working with the world's insurance markets and is exceptionally highly-regarded in this area, as well as for its expertise in shipping and aviation. The firm has over 1,800 lawyers and launched offices in Mexico City and Los Angeles in 2017. Clyde & Co was nominated for Law Firm of the Year at the Legal Business Awards 2017.
The star performers
Asset finance and leasing; Aviation; Commercial property; Commodities: physicals; Fraud: civil; Health and safety; Immigration: business; Infrastructure (including PFI and PPP); Insurance and reinsurance litigation; Insurance: corporate and regulatory; Insurance: insolvency and restructuring; M&A: mid-market, £50m-£250m; Mediators; Oil and gas; Personal injury: defendant; Product liability: defendant; Professional negligence; Public international law; Shipping; Trade finance.
Advising the Alpine Eternity and its liability insurers Britannia P&I Club on a casualty case resulting from a collision with an Iranian-owned oil rig; represented Feltham Construction and its insurers, AXA and AIG, in litigation pertaining to a fire that took place during a construction; advising West African Gas on the development of an LNG import terminal at the port of Tema in Ghana; advised Simec Group on its £330m acquisition of Alcan Aluminium UK from Rio Tinto; acting for U+I Group in its development agreement with the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority for the comprehensive re-development of the fire station on Albert Embankment.
Allianz; Arden Partners; Aviva; CBRE; Containerships Denizcilik; Chubb; Emirates; PetroSaudi; Scottish Power; Seaco Global.
Clyde & Co is 'one of the leading disputes firms in the world' and boasts 'international strength and reach'. The firm's 'insurance focus' and 'interesting sector specialism in marine, aviation and energy' featured heavily throughout the feedback. Although it is a 'prestigious firm', Clyde & Co is far from complacent as it has a 'clear growth strategy' and trainees are proud to work for a 'thriving and expanding firm' which is enjoying 'fast-paced success in the legal market'. Partners encourage trainees at Clydes to 'get in front of clients in a networking capacity' which ensures personal as well as professional development. There is a 'very good learning and development team' which arranges an 'excellent initial induction' and 'lots more formal training' than at some comparable firms. That said, recruits were disappointed that there were 'fewer international secondments than advertised' and that the 'allocation process for placements abroad' seemed 'opaque'. Other gripes include the 'lack of transparency' in the 'frustrating seat-change process'. Nevertheless, trainees praise the 'quality of the supervision', in particular, 'the willingness of colleagues to give trainees responsibility' and mentors 'who genuinely seem to care about making sure we assist with a range of interesting tasks'. For example, a work highlight for one trainee was 'being asked to draft outline appeal submissions and seeing them go to the client almost unamended'. Better still, trainees can expect to work 'reasonable hours' in an 'open working environment' filled with 'engaging and welcoming people'. If the idea of 'diverse and unique work' in an 'unstuffy office' where trainees receive 'lots of responsibility and client contact' appeals to you, apply to Clyde & Co.
A day in the life of...
Mouna Moussaoui first-year trainee, Clyde & Co LLP
Departments to date: Property and liability insurance, client secondment at E D & F Man
University:University College London and Université Panthéon-Assas (Paris 2)
Degree:LLB law with French law and Bachelors in private French law
8.30am: I come in early as my department is holding its monthly 'Breakfast Briefing' event for clients. The event starts with a breakfast buffet, and I catch up with some colleagues and clients. Trainees at Clyde & Co are encouraged to get to know clients at an early stage, which is great for building confidence. After breakfast, we head to a conference room where an associate gives a presentation on a recent Supreme Court decision on fraud and insurance and the implications for our clients.
9.30am: I head to my desk to read through my emails. I update my to-do list for the day, prioritising urgent tasks.
9.45am: One of my emails is from a partner asking me to conduct urgent research on a new case concerning the tort of nuisance and water contamination. I review practitioners' texts and case law on nuisance and environmental law. Insurance departments provide exposure to a wide range of legal issues, such as contract, construction or cyber-insurance - to name just a few. This is because insurer clients will defend a wide range of claims brought against their insureds (the persons who purchased the insurance policy).
12.00pm: Having completed my research, I draft a short memo for the partner. I summarise my findings and give my views on whether in the client's circumstances, water contamination is an actionable nuisance. From the outset I have been encouraged to provide my views and critically engage with cases.
12.30pm: The partner stops by my office for an impromptu chat about the research. We discuss the case law, how it can be distinguished from the client's circumstances and consider the client's options going forward. The partner asks me to join him later in the day for a call with our San Francisco office, as there is also an element of US law which must be clarified.
1.00pm: I meet some fellow trainees for our usual catch-up lunch at the Clyde & Co canteen - located on the 13th floor, where we enjoy panoramic views of the City.
2.00pm: Returning to my desk, I catch up with my supervisor, with whom I share an office. She is my main port of call for questions and advice and takes an active interest in my development. We discuss the progress of some cases I am assisting her with.
2.15pm: I make a quick run to court to drop off a bundle for a case management conference that I will be attending next week on another matter.
3.30pm: I return to my desk and finish working on a letter which I have been drafting to the other party in a dispute. The letter responds to the other party's demands for further information and rebuts their claim that our client has been contributorily negligent. I send the draft letter to the associate on the matter.
5.00pm: I head to the partner's office for the scheduled call to one of the lawyers from the Clyde & Co San Francisco office. I take detailed notes of the call.
6.00pm: The associate sends through his mark-up of the letter I drafted earlier. We now have a final version, which I send to the other side.
6.30pm: I send out some final emails and update my to-do list for tomorrow.
6.45pm: I head back to the 13th floor with some trainees, as Clyde & Co is holding its monthly Thursday Bar. It is a great opportunity to catch up with colleagues, network within the firm and first drinks are free!
About the firm
Address:The St Botolph Building, 138 Houndsditch, London, EC3A 7AR
Telephone: 020 7876 5555
Senior partner: Simon Konsta
Total partners: 375+
Other fee-earners: 2,000
Total trainees: 97 worldwide
Other offices: 48 offices, including associated offices across six continents.
Who we are: Clyde & Co is a leading, sector-focused law firm with more than 2,000 legal professionals and 3,300 staff in 48 offices and associated offices across six continents. It has a focus on five core global sectors - insurance, trade and commodities, energy, transport and infrastructure - that position it at the heart of global trade and commerce. It has a strong emerging markets focus and the largest disputes practice of any UK-origin law firm. The firm is one of the fastest growing law firms in the world with ambitious plans for further growth.
What we do: Advise clients across five core global sectors. Other areas of expertise include: banking and financing, corporate disputes, cybersecurity, education, emerging markets, employment, financial services, fraud, healthcare, hospitality, intellectual property, litigation, pensions, real estate, trade sanctions.
What we are looking for: Candidates who combine an excellent academic track record with strong commercial acumen and a practical approach to problem-solving. Trainees need to communicate effectively and build relationships with both clients and colleagues.
What you'll do:You will gain early responsibility with opportunities to develop your skills through close personal supervision and a wide range of training courses. You will undertake four six-month seats, which will cover both contentious and transactional work. You may choose to be seconded to one of our international offices, or have the opportunity to undertake a client secondment.
Perks: Private medical insurance, dental insurance, 25 days' holiday per year, life assurance, pension, interest-free season ticket loan, subsidised gym membership, employee assistance programme, cycle to work scheme and a subsidised restaurant.
Sponsorship:Full fees for GDL and LPC as well as a maintenance grant.
Facts and figures
Training contracts available for 2020: 45-50
Applications received pa: 2,000
Percentage interviewed: 10%
First year: £36,000
Second year: £38,000
Newly qualified: £63,000
Turnover in 2016: £447.1m (+13% from 2015) Profits per equity partner: £649,000 (+8%)
Apply to:Graduate team - firstname.lastname@example.org.
How: Online via website.
What's involved:Assessments will depend on the programme to which the applicant has applied to. Assessments will include an interview, group exercise, in-tray exercise and written assessments.
When to Apply:
Training Contract: By 31 July 2018.
Spring Vacation Scheme: By 7 January 2018.
Summer Vacation Scheme: By 7 January 2018.