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The dealmakers reshaping Europe

Everybody wants a slice of the $1 trillion European M&A market. The secret of earning big bucks (or rather, euros) is to arrange the handful of mega deals. We profile the dealmakers who've done it, and those who hope to. Top investment bankers from 10 firms talk about industries or countries in which they have a particular strength. Also, the advisers on the struggle for NatWest Bank explain their tactics. And we reconstruct the key moments in the biggest European deal of all: Vodafone's takeover of Mannesmann (Article: "The bid that couldn't fail"). Marcus Walker, Luciano Mondellini, Phillip Moore and Nick Kochan report

by Marcus Walker, Luciano Mondellini, Phillip Moore and Nick Kochan.

Vodafone's takeover of Mannesmann: The bid that couldn't fail


Some have it, the rest want it: the skills, track records and connections that help you win advisory mandates on Europe's high-profile deals. Advising on the very biggest transactions can send you shooting to the top of the M&A league table. You only have to look at the rankings since the euro came in: the six advisers to Vodafone AirTouch and Mannesmann occupy the top six places.

But in addition to the high profile sector of telecoms, advisory work continues across the board as investment banks fight to carve out a franchise in a pan-European and often global marketplace. The success of their overall investment-banking business may depend on it: winning corporate clients in other areas, especially primary capital markets, may hinge on being close to them during their key strategic decisions to merge or acquire.

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