DLA Piper's client base includes many of the world's major companies, from multinational enterprises to emerging technology companies. Together, they represent more than half of the Fortune 250 and nearly half of the FTSE 350 or their subsidiaries. We also advise governments and public sector bodies.

  • #1 We are Global Law Firm of the Year 2021, Financing Wind 2021
  • 50% of the firm's partners had advised on a S&ESG-related issue in the past two years, according to an internal September 2019 survey
  • #1 We are the number one legal advisor for Global Renewable Energy by deal count, based on rankings from inspiratia for the first half of 2021

Collectively, the activities of our clients and the decisions they take have a major societal and environmental impact. Our legal guidance and business advice has a significant influence on that impact. Lawyers are playing an increasingly active role in shaping organisations' strategic direction in terms of sustainability – and for us, this means encouraging them to go beyond regulatory compliance and focus on improving their sustainability performance.

Our work with clients represents our biggest opportunity to make a positive difference to society, reduce environmental impacts, and support a green recovery.

How we work with clients

"As ESG issues become more and more core to our business, it’s increasingly important to us that our legal teams are well versed in these issues and language."
Jenny Lowe, Head of Estates & Planning, Aggregate Industries UK Limited

Through our S&ESG client offer, we help clients navigate these challenges, so they can create sustainable value. Because each sector faces its own unique sustainability challenges and requirements, we take a sector-based approach to our S&ESG client work. All employees and partners have access to S&ESG training and, all our lawyers are trained in sustainability issues so they can apply this knowledge to their existing sector expertise. We view sustainability as a global challenge that requires local implementation, so we depend on the knowledge and understanding of locally embedded, networked lawyers in one global firm. We support clients at all stages of their sustainability transition.

Being a credible sustainability partner

Just as we advise our clients on S&ESG issues and help them create sustainable value through our S&ESG services, we also partner with them to help us manage our own sustainability impacts, sometimes in collaboration with other external stakeholders. In this way we work towards common sustainability goals and tackle challenges together.

We believe that being a trusted, credible sustainability partner means listening closely to our clients, but also challenging them when we feel it's right to do so. For example, many of our clients provided valuable feedback for our materiality assessment, helping us identify the impacts and concerns that mattered most to them. At the same time, we're active in shaping our clients' sustainability strategies. This includes pushing back on assumptions and encouraging clients to embrace change and do things differently.

Innovating our services

"When we partner with clients, it shouldn’t be just on the basis of who they are, but also who they want to be."
DLA Piper colleague

Investing in innovation is an important part of being the law firm of choice for our clients. For example, in 2021 we partnered with Datamaran®, a cloud-based S&ESG risk management and data platform, to develop a tool for integrating S&ESG considerations into legal due diligence. Another example is Aiscension, an AI-based risk management service we developed in partnership with Reveal that is able to detect illegal cartel activity, including price fixing, bid rigging, market sharing, collective boycott, and exchange of competitively sensitive information. Read more in section 2.O Our clients of our Sustainability Report 2020/21.

What's next

In the future, we want to do more to ensure that the advice and support we provide is set in the context of a wider understanding of our clients' S&ESG performance and sustainability goals. We're also looking at how to better quantify the S&ESG impacts of our work with clients, so we can work together on shared S&ESG objectives.