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44 New Articles

The commercial real estate market in Poland continues to be on a growth path. In 2017, the market recorded high demand in all major asset classes, breaking records in the hotel and warehouse sectors. The total value of transactions is growing consistently, and in 2017 it reached EUR 5.1 billion – the highest level in the history of the Polish market.

Against the backdrop of the many significant and at times highly controversial changes being made to Polish law at the moment, the country is close to enacting its first ever serious whistleblower protection laws. What will this protection look like, and what does its passage mean for Poland?

After a valuable and information-rich day of panel discussions on important business development and law firm management topics, participants reconvened that evening (and were joined by several dozen newcomers) at the first ever CEE Legal Matters Annual Banquet and Deal of the Year Awards Ceremony – a celebration of CEE’s legal markets and the lawyers who work within them. Awards were presented for 17 qualifying markets in CEE – plus a surprise award for overall CEE Deal of the Year – with many of the lawyers playing key roles in nominated deals joining the celebration.

In Western Europe, offshore wind farms have been successfully used for a long time. Meanwhile, no power-generating installation of this type is currently operating on the waters of the Baltic Sea under Polish control.

The Deal: On June 20, 2017, CEE Legal Matters reported that the Esin Attorney Partnership and Baker McKenzie had advised Turkven Private Equity, the Akarlilar Family, and Mavi Giyim Sanayi ve Ticaret A.S., the Turkish jeans and jeans-wear company, on Mavi’s IPO, with White & Case advising underwriters Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs, and Is Yatirim. 

On August 17, a gathering of Dispute Resolution experts from many of the leading domestic and international law firms in Ukraine gathered in Baker McKenzie’s Kyiv offices for a Round Table conversation. 

Hungarian lawyer Peter Paroczi is the Director Counsel at Harman International, the US-based consumer electronics company. He joined Harman in Budapest earlier this year, after spending four years in private practice and then another seven in-house, first with Samsung Electronics, then at E.On. He agreed to answer some of our questions about his career.

Pro bono is a Latin phrase meaning “for the public good,” and, in the lawyering context, it refers to legal services provided free of charge, generally to indigent clients or charities or other public interest institutions unable to afford standard legal fees. The practice, which in its current form was developed first in Western legal markets, has seen a significant increase in recent years in CEE as well. Hungary is among the countries leading the way.

The Parties’ Positions

In state court proceedings, Claimant requested indemnity pursuant to Section 24 of the Austrian Commercial Agents Act, basing the Austrian court’s jurisdiction on Section 99 of the Law on Court Jurisdiction, pursuant to which a person who does not have a forum generale in Austria may nevertheless be sued in Austrian courts if he or she has assets within the district of an Austrian court. Claimant argued that Respondent had assets in Austria as it had an outstanding claim against it.

“Parallel proceedings” are disputes between the same and/or related parties in the same or related disputes in different forums. Parallel proceedings usually arise when court and arbitration proceedings are commenced simultaneously to resolve the same case or a case that will in some way affect the other. Disputes arising out of shareholders’ agreements and articles of association, in particular, come under the spotlight in Turkey in the context of parallel proceedings.

Czech lawyers, not known for ebullience, are nonetheless finding it hard to keep the smiles off their faces. After a decade of disappointment and struggle, if the Managing Partners at Czech firms are to be believed, the last remnants of the global financial crisis have dissipated and business is booming. As spring rolls through Central Europe, the sunshine is both meteorological and metaphoric. Prague is basking in the warmth.

Ranking services form a critical part of the law firm landscape in CEE as around the world, and law firm marketing and business development functions in the region spend many weeks or months each year preparing their submissions for those ranking services they believe are most widely read and influential. Still, not everybody is convinced the ranking services are as effective or valuable as they could be. Thus, for this issue, we asked the law firm marketing and BD experts around CEE: “What one change would you most like to see made to the law firm rankings to make them more useful/effective?” 

The Deal:

In October 2016, CEE Legal Matters reported that Baker & McKenzie had advised European payment and transactional services provider Worldline on its agreement with Komercni Banka, a subsidiary of the Societe Generale Group, to develop products and services for Czech and Slovakian merchants. CMS advised Komercni Banka on the deal. We reached out to Baker & McKenzie Partner Libor Basl and Associate David Reiterman, both in the firm’s Prague office, for more information.

In The Corner Office, we invite Managing Partners at law firms from across the region to share information about their careers, management styles, and strategies. For this issue, we asked them to describe the first major deal or client matter they generated themselves, and how they did it. 

Baker McKenzie at a Glance

Baker McKenzie brings insight and foresight to clients across more than 70 global offices. Our team of 13,000 people, including over 6,500 lawyers, works alongside our clients to drive growth that is both sustainable – and inclusive. The global business community is more interconnected than ever before. Opportunities and risks spill across different markets, sectors and areas of law, so a connected perspective is essential in delivering business objectives while mitigating risk. Our integrated client solutions provide seamless advice, underpinned by deep practice and sector expertise, as well as first-rate local market knowledge.

In the Central and Eastern European (CEE) region, Baker McKenzie's expansion remains steadfast, with a thriving team of over legal professionals. Our footprint extends across six offices in Austria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Türkiye, and Ukraine. As part of our global network, coupled with well-established partnerships throughout the entire CEE landscape, we proudly stand as one of the foremost international law firms in this dynamic territory. Our reputation as a premier business law firm in CEE is a testament to our extensive experience in advising on a multitude of prestigious projects and nurturing enduring client relationships.

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