James Anderson is head of Skadden’s European tax practice.


Mr. Anderson is highly experienced in private capital arrangements, with a particular focus on the establishment and ongoing operations of asset management structures; portfolio investments in liquid markets, infrastructure, real estate and technology; and compensation for fund principals.

He also counsels on the full range of public capital markets transactions, including IPOs; issuances of equity-linked and other hybrid instruments; securitisations; structured investment vehicles; and other structured debt offerings. He has advised the governments of various international finance centres on new corporate and tax laws. Recently, his practice has focused on new intersections between private capital, impact capital and technology, particularly in the energy sector and the high-frequency, algorithmic and augmented intelligence trading sectors.

Mr. Anderson also presents seminars on the taxation of space and has been quoted in several publications on this growing area of law. In 2020, Mr. Anderson was one of 10 legal practitioners featured in “Innovative Lawyers: Europe,” a report published by the Financial Times, which highlighted his work in this area. In 2019, he chaired the Space Taxation seminar at the IFA Global Congress in London.

Under his leadership, Skadden’s European tax practice was named Best International Tax Team of the Year at the 2023 Tolley’s Taxation Awards, as well as Transatlantic Tax Team of the Year by The American Lawyer and Legal Week at the 2018 Transatlantic Legal Awards. The firm has repeatedly been ranked as the Best Law Firm for Tax Law by Vault’s law firm rankings and the firm’s global Tax practice also was named Tax Group of the Year for 2018 and 2019 by Law360. The European Tax practice also received three ITR European Awards for 2019 Impact Deals of the Year.

Mr. Anderson is ranked in the first tier for tax by Chambers UK, Chambers Europe and Chambers Global, which also lists Skadden’s Tax Group in Band 1 of its Global Tax rankings. In Chambers UK’s 2023 edition, clients remarked that he is “the best tax lawyer currently practising in the U.K.” and is “a highly adept and practical tax lawyer who is very gifted at taking a complex matter and simplifying it to its essence.” The Legal 500 ranks Mr. Anderson in its Hall of Fame, with clients noting he has “very strong knowledge of current tax issues and is very strong in anticipating problems, thus thinking them through before they arise. Always available, always ready to think out of the box.”

The Legal 500 also has ranked Mr. Anderson amongst the publication’s leading 250 international tax advisers worldwide and one of its “leading individuals” amongst the top 40 U.K. corporate tax advisers, with client feedback noting he is “extremely smart and solutions-oriented” with “expert knowledge of tax law which he applies with wit and charm.”

Who’s Who Legal has called him an “internationally renowned star” with a “world class” practice, and repeatedly includes him within its annual Thought Leaders list for Corporate Tax. He also has been repeatedly ranked as Highly Regarded in the Tax Controversy category of ITR World Tax. In addition, Mr. Anderson is currently recognised in Legal Experts, PLC Cross-Border Tax on Transactions Hand­book, Tax Directors Handbook, Lawdragon Insights: Private Funds and The Best Lawyers in the UK under Tax Law and Investment Funds Law. Mr. Anderson also is listed as a leader in International Tax Review’s Tax Controversy Leaders Guide and named in Euromoney/Legal Media Group’s Expert Guides’ Guide to the World’s Leading Tax Lawyers.

Mr. Anderson is a member of the International Bar Association and the International Fiscal Association (IFA) British Branch committee. He also is a member of the HMRC/HMT Consultation Group for the U.K. fund management industry and vice chair of the Tax Committee for the Alternative Investment Management Association, lobbying for good practice in the taxation of U.K. and cross-border asset management activities. In addition, he serves as a member of the HMRC Transfer Pricing Forum and various stakeholder committees.

Mr. Anderson supports numerous pro bono initiatives of the firm and in the community. He assisted in the establishment of a bridge fund for Shell Foundation in relation to mobility and access to renewable energy in Africa and Asia, worked with the Global Fund to End Slavery for the Walk Free organization and helped structure Create Streets, a charity dedicated to neighbourhood planning and alleviating housing shortages in the U.K. He also advises Shivia, an organisation that aims to empower indigent families in India by creating livelihoods, and the Women@TheTable initiative sponsored by the United Nations. Additionally, Mr. Anderson supervises Skadden London’s JUST Programme, which provides an entry point for undergraduates wanting to pursue a legal career in social justice. He also assists the PRIME Programme with workshops for under­privileged local students.

His transaction highlights include representing:

  • Odyssey Acquisition S.A. in its €1.5 billion combination with AI drug discovery company BenevolentAI, the largest-ever European de-SPAC transaction to date
  • SDCL EDGE Acquisition Corporation in the tax aspects of its proposed $250 million IPO of units consisting of one Class A ordinary share and one-third of one redeemable warrant
  • Neuberger Berman Group LLC in the business combination, reported at $12.5 billion, of Owl Rock Capital Group and the Dyal Capital Partners division of Neuberger Berman to form Blue Owl Capital
  • Perella Weinberg Partners (PWP) on the tax aspects of its $975 million business combination with FinTech Acquisition Corp. IV, a special purpose acquisition company, pursuant to which PWP will become a Nasdaq-listed public company with an Up-C structure
  • Jane Street Group LLC in connection with its U.K. and U.S. structure
  • Kismet Acquisition One, a special purpose acquisition company, in the tax aspects of its $1.9 billion initial merger with Nexters Global Limited, the first-ever de-SPAC transaction involving a Russian company. As a result of the merger, Nexters will become a publicly traded company
  • Citi in its platform fund formation and manager relationships
  • Pret A Manger Ltd, a portfolio company of JAB Holding Company LLC, in its acquisition of EAT Limited
  • BlackRock, Inc. in connection with its acquisition of MGPA, an independently managed private equity real estate investment advisory company in Asia-Pacific and Europe. This transaction was named Global Deal of the Year by PERE Magazine
  • BTG Pactual in its acquisition of Ariel Reinsurance, a Bermuda-based property and casualty reinsurance company
  • Legg Mason, Inc. in its acquisition of Fauchier Partners LLP, a manager of funds of hedge funds, from BNP Paribas Investment Partners
  • GSA Capital in its spin-out of XTX Markets
  • BlackRock in connection with its acquisition of Credit Suisse’s ETF division
  • Trailstone LLC in its formation out of Deutsche Bank AG to establish a global energy and commodities investment and trading platform
  • Barclays Bank in a spin-out of an equity trading desks to a separate fund platform in Bermuda, New York and London
  • Highbridge Principal Strategies in its European credit operations
  • WeWork on its SEC IPO documentation and structure
  • Nasdaq in its £2.7 billion proposed acquisition of the London Stock Exchange plc
  • BTG Pactual in its acquisition of BSI, the Swiss-based private banking group owned by Assicurazioni Generali S.p.A., for CHF1.5 billion
  • Dermalogica Inc in its sale to Unilever
  • C12 Management in the spin-out by Barclays Bank of $12.3 billion in credit market assets into a separate fund platform (Protium)
  • Wes Edens in his acquisition of Aston Villa Football Club
  • Och-Ziff (Sculptor) on its SEC-registered IPO on the New York Stock Exchange
  • the establishment of a U.K. disaster recovery site for a U.S.-based algorithmic trading business

Mr. Anderson handles a wide range of tax controversy matters and has worked on enquiries by the U.K. revenue authorities, tax court cases, disclosure programmes, transfer pricing disputes, APAs and MAPs, as well as various settlement negotiations. He also has experience in complex cross-border inter partes tax disputes.



  • M.A., (Hons.) Cantab., Law, Cambridge University, 1990
  • Legal Practice Course, The College of Law, 1994


  • Solicitor, England & Wales


  • Law Society of England & Wales
  • Law Society of Ireland
  • IFA (British Branch) Committee International Tax Planning Association
  • International Bar Association

James Anderson