LONDON – Global law firm Reed Smith has been shortlisted in three categories at the 2022 British Legal Awards.

TMT Team of the Year

A cross-practice Reed Smith team based in London and New York advised Sony Music Entertainment, and a subsidiary, in relation to its acquisition of the music-recording business Kobalt Music Group Ltd.

The deal, one of the biggest and most complex acquisitions in music in recent years, enabled Sony to assert its leading position in the billion-dollar ‘DIY’ music space, which allows independent music artists to release, publish, distribute and license their music in the same way as global superstars. The transaction was conducted within a very short timeframe between the end of December 2021 and 31 January 2022, when the deal was signed.

The Reed Smith team was led by Michael Young, EMEA vice-chair of the firm’s global mergers and acquisitions group, and Gregor Pryor, head of the firm’s entertainment and media industry group.

Litigation and Dispute Resolution Team of the Year - Large Sized Firm

A Reed Smith team, led by partners Michael Skrein and Richard Gunn, and senior associate Ellie Ruiz, represented Channel Rescue in a legal challenge to the then UK Home Secretary’s policy to push back refugee and other migrant boats from English territorial waters into French territorial waters. Channel Rescue is a volunteer organisation set up to monitor the safety of migrants crossing the Channel.

The controversial “pushbacks” policy was challenged on multiple grounds in the Channel Rescue claim. Reed Smith leveraged its litigation capabilities in both public and admiralty law to put together a compelling case. The team worked round the clock for over 1,000 hours during a five-month period to ensure the successful management of this complex and important claim. Reed Smith represented Channel Rescue on a pro bono basis.