Associate - Commercial, MES (Senior-Level)

Location: London

Vacancy Type: Solicitor

Contract: Permanent

Hours: Full-time 

Experience Level: Senior Level 

Expiry date: 09/05/2022

About Us

Bird & Bird LLP is an international law firm which supports organisations being changed by technology or the digital world. We combine exceptional legal expertise with deep industry knowledge and refreshingly creative thinking, to help clients achieve their commercial goals. We have over 1,300 lawyers in 29 offices across Europe, the Middle East, Asia Pacific, and North America, as well as close ties with firms in other parts of the world. If you want to find out more, visit

The firm offers excellent prospects for progression and our culture provides all our people with world-class support to achieve their ambitions and goals.

Bird & Bird is committed to maintaining an inclusive work environment and we are an equal opportunities employer. We support an agile working environment and are happy to discuss flexible working.

The Role

We are looking for a Senior Level Commercial Associate to join our internationally recognised media, entertainment and sport sector team (MES).  With a focus on working with clients on commercial, content, data and technology projects in the media sector, the role will involve supporting the wider international MES team and the firm’s recently-established cross-sector Digital Rights & Assets (DR&A) cross-practice group on a range of data, AI, tokens and digital identity matters.  Day-to-day work will include significant content distribution (including sport), data and adtech matters.

The successful individual will play an important and expansive role in helping to grow the UK and international MES and DR&A businesses and delivering these group’s strategies, working with a number of partners and other associates across the firm.  The role is based in the firm's London commercial team (which itself has over one hundred lawyers).  The successful candidate will also have the opportunity – and will be expected – to work across a wide range of transactions and projects where digital content, data, AI, tokens and digital IDs are relevant, collaborating internationally with other specialists and working across other sectors (including, for example, aviation, life sciences, financial services and retail) as necessary.

What you'll do

  • You will work with an exciting list of MES organisations, including broadcasters, platforms, rightsholders, technology businesses, gambling operators - from household names and high-growth businesses to start-ups - on a wide range of matters, with an emphasis on transactions and projects. 

  • You  will also bring your commercial MES skillset to bear on digital content, data, AI, tokens and digital ID work for clients across all sectors served by the firm.  We are seeing significant new opportunities to deploy the skills typically provided to media and media technology clients to organisations operating across a wide range of other industries.  As in MES, the organisations you will work with in other sectors will range from global household names to disruptive start-ups.

  • A substantial part of the work will involve advising businesses built around the exploitation of content, technology and data and who operate across multiple territories, as well as a significant volume of adtech-related work. 

  • You will be expected to demonstrate and continually develop top-tier legal expertise and outstanding industry knowledge.   You will have a natural interest in your clients' businesses, strategies, challenges and opportunities and will partner closely with them by providing excellent, efficient service and valuable, independently-minded insight.  An approach which combines high levels of commerciality without ever losing integrity is essential, as is a flexible and responsive approach to meeting client needs.

  • You will be part of a close-knit team of entrepreneurial partners and associates who are passionate about the law, technology and business in the MES sector, as well as the use of content, data, AI, tokens and digital IDs by clients more generally.

  • As you develop in experience, you will be given responsibility for your own matters and the opportunity and support to develop the skills, mentor, supervise, and take responsibility for more junior associates and trainees.

  • In addition to client-facing work, you will be enabled and expected to play a broad role in delivering the team’s business plan. This will require excellent project management skills, and bringing focus and energy to internal and external workstreams and projects designed to operate centres of excellence around key topics within the firm, while delivering coherent external marketing and business development.

  • The partners in the team are highly supportive of business development, and would support the successful candidate building their profile in this area, including winning and growing client relationships, attending pitches, speaking at conferences, article writing and generally developing a strong personal profile in relevant industry segments.

The main responsibilities of this role are outlined above, however this description is not exhaustive and the job holder may be required to undertake additional duties from time to time to ensure the smooth running of the department. The role may require some working outside our normal working hours of 9:30am- 5:30pm.

Your skills 

Candidates will need to have solid commercial law experience, with relevant experience of in the media, sport and technology sectors.  In order to meet the competencies for this role we would expect you to be operating at Mid-level associate with experience gained in a leading firm. 

The successful candidate must have:

  • Excellent academic achievement.
  • Excellent technical legal skills, including analytical abilities, written and verbal communications skills, and drafting and negotiation capabilities.  Excellent attention to detail is essential.
  • The ability to provide clear, precise, practical advice and support.
  • A proven ability to intelligently interpret and translate client instructions and information to deliver first-class, progressive practical solutions.
  • Experience of handling complex media / technology matters gained within a comparable environment and at an appropriate level.  Work on product and service innovation would be beneficial.
  • Experience of acting for mainstream media and technology companies.
  • An interest in deploying the commercial MES skillset across a wide range of other industries.
  • A clear interest in working on matters concerned with digital content, adtech, data, AI, tokens and digital IDs.
  • A genuine curiosity about client’s businesses and objectives.
  • A well-grounded willingness to objectively advise and assist clients on making high-quality decisions beyond the narrow confines of providing technical legal advice.
  • A team player attitude, and a flexible and responsive approach to meeting client needs.
  • A positive attitude to all aspects of the role, and confidence and calmness under pressure.
  • The ability to liaise effectively with other fee earners in the group, and also with fee earners from other relevant disciplines and jurisdictions as required.
  • Delegation and supervisory skills where appropriate.
  • An enthusiasm for proactively supporting business development activity, participating in development and maintenance of client relationships, and identifying business opportunities; a demonstrable understanding of law as a business.
  • A commitment to regularly update your own technical expertise and to achieve continuous improvement and development, and contribute to the general upkeep of the group (precedents, or know-how generally).
  • The ability to use social media platforms (e.g. LinkedIn, Twitter) to broadcast or amplify messages and to connect with external contacts/networks.

For further information about this role, please click on the link below to view the Job Description or contact Rachel Marshall, Recruitment Officer, on [email protected]. To apply, click on the apply now button to submit your details.

Bird & Bird is committed to creating and sustaining a diverse and inclusive environment. As part of our commitment to that goal, we are participating in the UK Mansfield Rule. Our commitment is to consider at least 30% female lawyers, lawyers of colour, lawyers with disabilities and/or lawyers who identify as LGBTQ+ for our fee earning roles.

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