GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, has revealed its global league tables for top 10 legal advisers in consumer sector by value and volume for 2020 in its report, ‘Global and Consumer M&A Review Legal Adviser League Tables 2020’.

According to GlobalData’s M&A report, a total of 3,405 M&A deals were announced in the consumer sector during 2020, marking a 33.2% decline over the 5,099 deals announced during 2019. The deal value increased by 33.3% from $399bn in 2019 to $266bn in 2020.

Top Advisers by Value and Volume

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and Kirkland & Ellis were the top mergers and acquisitions (M&A) legal advisers in the global consumer sector for 2020 by value and volume, respectively.

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett advised on 16 deals worth $20.1bn – the highest value among all the advisers. Kirkland & Ellis led in volume terms, having advised on 57 deals worth $17.2bn.

GlobalData lead analyst Aurojyoti Bose said: “Kirkland & Ellis, despite being the sole company to advise on more than 50 deals, lost the top position by value to Simpson Thacher & Bartlett due to its involvement in low value transactions. While the average deal size for Simpson Thacher & Bartlett was $1.3bn, it stood at just $302m for Kirkland & Ellis. Simpson Thacher & Bartlett was also the only firm to surpass the $20bn mark amid the challenges brought by Covid-19.”


Kirkland & Ellis also occupied the second position in GlobalData’s ranking of legal advisers for M&As in the global consumer sector by value, followed by Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz with nine deals worth a total $12.6bn.

Interestingly, Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz was among the only two firms, with the other firm being Slaughter and May, in the top 10 adviser ranking by value despite advising on a single digit deal volume.

Baker McKenzie took the second spot by volume with 47 deals worth $11bn, followed by Latham & Watkins with 38 deals worth $10.7bn and Allen & Overy with 35 deals worth $7.2bn.


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