Today, as a partner, I focus on national and international transactions in communications, IT and health.

After joining Bird & Bird as an articled clerk in 1985, I qualified into the Commercial department where for the past 33 years I have helped clients win, deliver and/or turn around innovative, complex, high-value and business-critical projects in the telecommunications, healthcare and defence sectors. To such end, I am currently lead advisor on three such projects, each with a contract value in excess of £1bn.

I have a loyal team that has twice been short-listed as UK Commercial Team of the Year. They often describe working with me as being on 'Ayers time', meaning any time day or night — partly due to the nature and demands of the projects undertaken and partly a legacy of becoming a father of three children in quick succession. I am particularly proud of the following anonymous 360° team feedback: 'On a personal note, he is great to work with. He never loses his temper, never blames anyone and never leaves you feeling unsupported.'

The following testimonial is actually more accurately a reflection of the team I lead because it truly isn't all about me: 'David's manner and approach is one of industrious flawless delivery and team integration. David has the natural ability to integrate teams and provide clarity where others would succumb to complexity and the enormity of a challenge. David is extremely respected by his customers and peers, and is revered by many due to his ability to consume and retain vast quantities of information and deliver high quality documented outputs in very short timescales over sustained periods.'

Further, the following testimonial sums up how I help the team do what it does: 'If I ever had to steer a major contract out of the mire, I would turn at once to David. He's a unique blend of tough experience, irreverence, humour & rock solid dependability.'

However, and in conclusion, I rather like the following testimonials that succinctly sum up client outcomes: 'I congratulate you on understanding my drivel and making a reasoned explanation of the thinking behind our concerns,' and 'my personal thanks for this. Yet again you have saved the bacon'.

  • The Law Society of England & Wales in 1987