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Igor Andries is the Head of Legal & Regulatory at Orange Moldova.

Bardugov Alexander is the Head of Legal of Banca Intesa in Moscow, a role which he has held since 2013. He first joined Banca Intesa in 2004 as a Junior Legal Counsel, gradually progressing to Head of Sector for Banking Operations Legal Support in 2008, Head of Legal Support for Retail and SME in 2009, and Head of Business Legal Support in 2010.

Ante Sucur has been the Head of Legal Affairs and Company Secretary at Mercury Processing Services International Ltd (formerly Intesa Sanpaolo Card Ltd) since 2009. Before joining Mercury, he worked for five and a half years at Privredna Banka Zagreb d.d. (which is also part of the Intesa Sanpaolo Group).

Basak Gurbuz is a Counsel at The Walt Disney Company Turkey, where she oversees the company’s legal and compliance matters. Prior to assuming her current in-house role, she was a Managing Associate with Gun + Partners. Her experience also includes time with Pekin & Bayar, the Yazici Law Firm, the Kasaroglu Law Firm, and Bayindir Holding.

Andras Levai is the Head of Legal-CE Ethics and Compliance at Tesco Central Europe. Levai, who is based in Hungary, has been with Tesco since June 2009, when he joined as Senior Legal Counsel. In 2013, he was appointed to the role of Group Internal Auditor for Hungary and Turkey and he became the Head of Legal for Hungary in 2014. He was appointed to his current role in 2016. Prior to Tesco, he worked at the Hidasi & Partners Law Firm.

Andras Mohacsi is the Head of Competition Law and Sanctions at British American Tobacco, where he is responsible for designing, rolling out, and coordinating the implementation of the company’s global competition law and sanctions compliance programs, as well as overseeing the management of any related proceedings against any group company. He first joined BAT in Hungary in 1998. Before that, he worked as Head of Legal of Daewoo Bank Hungary.

Adriana Minovic is the Head of Data Protection and DPO of the Ergomed Group, a provider of clinical research, pharmaco-vigilance, and other services in the Life Sciences industry, with headquarters in Guilford, U.K. Prior to joining Ergomed, Adriana was Head of Conent Security and DPO for the United Group, and before that as a lawyer specializing in regulatory/compliance matters at Air Serbia. Earlier still, she was an adviser for the European Integration Office of the Government of the Republic of Serbia and a legal adviser in Serbia’s Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications.

Artyom Podshibyakin is the Head of Legal and Compliance of INDITEX Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan. Prior to joining INDITEX over a decade ago, Podshibyakin was a Senior Lawyer with IKEA MOS Retail and Property.

Bahar Yenerer is the General Counsel of Atos in Turkey. Prior to joining Atos in 2012 she spent two years as a Senior Lawyer with ELIG. Prior to that she was a Senior Legal Counsel with Turkcell, Head of M&A and Corporate Affairs with the Yamaner & Yamaner Law Office, a Lawyer with Tekin Law Office, and a Legal Consultant with the Serap Zuvin Law Offices.

Artur Chrzanowski is the Head of Legal of EIFFAGE Polska. Prior to joining EIFFAGE in 2016, he was a Senior Associate with Magnusson in Warsaw for one year. Earlier still, he was Head of Legal at Metro Properties, Legal Section Manager of the A1 Motorway Project at Skanska, an attorney-at-law with the Kronospan Group, and a lawyer with Kompania Piwowarska. In the process, he has served in managerial roles as a compliance officer and as a member of various company management and supervisory boards.

Miljan Malovic is the Head of the Business Legal Advisory Office of Banca Intesa Belgrade. He graduated from the Faculty of Law at the University of Belgrade in 2001, and joined Banca Intesa in 2006.

Helena Kokot is the Director of the Legal Affairs Department at the Zagreb International Airport. She joined the ZIA in 2014 after 12 years in the telecommunications sector with Croatian Telecom and T-Mobile Croatia. She got her law degree from the Faculty of Law at the University of Zagreb in 1999.

Jovan Velkovski is the Head of Legal at JAT (Yugoslav Airlines) Tehnika, an Aircraft Maintenance Repair & Overhaul Center in Belgrade. Prior to joining the company, he worked as a Senior Legal Advisor at Privredna Banka Beograd, where he gained professional experience in bankruptcy cases.

Linda Szegvari is the Chief Legal Counsel of MET Hungary, an energy trading company that was established in 2007. The company is a subsidiary of the MET Group, which is present in 28 markets.

On January 2, 2018, CEE Legal Matters reported that Czech pharmacy chain Dr. Max acquired the entire A&D Pharma network in Romania, in a transaction that has been shortlisted for CEE Deal of the Year 2017 in the country. While the transaction awaits approval from authorities, we reached out to Ivo Senkyrik, Head of Group M&A at Dr. Max, to find out how his team made the deal happen.

Basak Gurbuz is Counsel with The Walt Disney Company in Turkey, a company she joined in August 2015. Before going in-house, she worked for eight years at Gun + Partners and another year and a half at Pekin & Bayar.

Andrzej Posniak started his career in law at CMS in 2003 as a corporate trainee and, step by step, become a qualified tax advisor, then a Partner and Head of the Tax Team in CMS Warsaw's Corporate Department. In addition, Andrzej also fulfills General Counsel and Risk Manager roles for the firm in Poland. CEE Legal Matters sat down with Andrzej to learn more about his unique role.

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.

In the modern world, people are regularly faced with new challenges.

Who knows lawyers better than other lawyers? In this issue’s Face-to-Face feature, Maravela & Asociatii Partners Gelu Maravela and Alina Popescu interview Mihaela Popescu, the former Head of Legal at Mercedes-Benz Financial Services.

We are now only two days away from the Hungary General Counsel Summit. CEE Legal Matters spoke with Erika Papp, Partner and Head of Banking and International Finance, Hungary with CMS, one of the sponsors of the conference to hear her thoughts on the upcoming event. 

Who knows more about lawyers than other lawyers? In the Face-to-Face feature, we step back and allow private practitioners to sit down directly with in-house counsel to discuss their challenges, strategies, and solutions. 

ODI Law Firm Partner Matjaz Jan interviews Miha Ursic, the General Counsel of HIT d.d. in Slovenia for CEE Legal Matters’ Face-to-Face.

Even though we have not yet reached the speed of light, the future is almost here.

On January 17, 2019, CEE Legal Matters reported that Finland's Caverion Emerging Markets Oy had sold its Czech subsidiary to KART spol., a member of the CEZ Group. We reached out to Ville Ojanen, Caverion's VP Strategy and M&A, for comment.

On October 31, 2018, CEE Legal Matters reported that the Erste Group had issued the first loan via blockchain platform in Europe. We reached out to Erste Group's Managing Director and Head of Group Transaction Documentation Kathrin Gfall-Gapp to enquire on the first paperless issuance experience.

On May 7, 2018, CEE Legal Matters reported that DTEK Renewables is developing the Nikopol solar power plant project in Ukraine, which will be the most powerful in the country. We reached out to Ivan Lyakh, General Counsel for DTEK Renewables, for comment.

On October 30, 2017, CEE Legal Matters reported that South African investment fund Coast2Coast had acquired Polish soup and pate manufacturer Profi — one of several recent CEE investments. Coast2Coast's Regional Counsel CEE Anna Wawrzynczak agreed to answer our questions about the recent acquisitions.

On February 28, 2018, CEE Legal Matters reported that NEPI Rockcastle PLC had taken over a commercial building in the city center of Sibiu, Romania, for shopping mall development. We reached out to Robert Ionita, Head of Legal at NEPI Rockcastle, to get his perspective on the deal.

On February 26, 2018, CEE Legal Matters reported that Timex Card had sold 51 % of its shares to UTA GmbH. Agnieszka Slowiak, Chief Legal Counsel at Timex Card, spoke with us about the deal.

On January 8, 2018, CEE Legal Matters reported that the X5 Retail Group had acquired a supermarket chain operating under the "O’Key" brand in Russia. Later we learned that the acquired supermarket chain was LLC Razvitiye Malykh Formatov. We invited Tatiana Sumarokova, Head of M&A Legal Support Division at X5 Retail Group, to share her thoughts on X5's cooperation with external counsel in the transaction.

On January 2, 2018, CEE Legal Matters reported that Czech pharmacy chain Dr. Max acquired the entire A&D Pharma network in Romania, in a transaction that has been shortlisted for CEE Deal of the Year 2017 in the country. While the transaction awaits approval from authorities, we reached out to Ivo Senkyrik, Head of Group M&A at Dr. Max, to find out how his team made the deal happen.

On January 26, 2018, CEELM reported on a joint investment by Banca Transilvania and the EBRD to acquire more than 66% of shares in Victoriabank, the third largest bank in the Republic of Moldova. Bogdan Plesuvescu, the Executive Director and Chief Legal Officer for Banca Transilvania agreed to provide some insight on the transaction, which remains contingent on approval by local authorities.

On December 22, 2017, CEE Legal Matters reported on EUR 1.9 billion acquisition of UPC Austria from Liberty Global by T-Mobile. T-Mobile’s team was led by Vice President Legal, Regulatory & Interception Anja Tretbar-Bustorf, who spoke to us about the deal.

On November 3, 2017, CEELM reported that CEE Attorneys Romania had helped logistics company EshopWedrop Group — part of Xpediator Plc — establish a relationship with franchisees in Albania and Cyprus. We spoke with Mircea Bandean, Managing Director at EshopWedrop, for more information. 

On October 24, 2017, CEE Legal Matters reported that Mellanox Technologies, a software developer headquartered in Israel, would be opening an R&D center in Kyiv. We reached out to Gideon Rosenberg, Deputy General Counsel & Vice President of Legal Affairs at Mellanox, for more information.

On October 25, 2017, CEE Legal Matters reported that Cobalt had advised the Otravo Group — a subsidiary of Waterland Private Equity Investment — on its acquisition of 100% shares in Interneto Partneris, an online ticket seller in the Baltics. The transaction was led on the buyer side by Waterland's Senior Investment Manager William Ford, who spoke with us about the deal. 

On October 9, 2017, CEELM reported that the Globalworth real estate company had invested outside Romania for the first time by acquiring Griffin Premium Real Estate in Poland. Catalin Tirziu, Head of Legal at Globalworth, agreed to share his insight on the transaction. 

On October 4, 2017, CEELM reported that Everlegal had advised UDP Renewables, part of the UDP development group, on its development of the Dymerska Solar Power Plant in Ukraine. We reached out to UDP Renewables CFO Kiril Bondar, who manages the project. 

On August 8, 2017, CEELM reported that Cerha Hempel Spiegelfeld Hlawati had advised red-stars.com in connection with its acquisition of 25% of the shares of ecosio GmbH. We reached out to Red Star’s CEO, Thomas Streimelweger, for more information about the deal.

On June 20, 2017, CEELM reported that mBank sold its majority shares in housing project company mLocum to another housing company called Archicom S.A. in Poland. We reached out to Monika Powroznik, Deputy Director for mBank, to enquire about the cooperation with her external counsel on this specific sale.

On December 7th, 2016, CEE Legal Matters reported that AmRest Holdings had acquired 15 KFC restaurants and the license to operate and develop the KFC brand in Germany. We invited Dawid Ksiazcziak, Chief Legal officer for AmRest Holdings, to reflect on the KFC acquisitions.

On June 2, 2017, CEE Legal Matters reported that regional used car dealership AAA Auto International had negotiated the refinancing of the acquisition of its entire group from CSOB. Jan Siroky, Senior Lawyer for AAA Auto International, agreed to comment on the deal.

On May 3, 2017, CEE Legal Matters reported that facility management company Mundus Services – a joint venture of EMPower Capital and KJK Capital – had acquired engineering solutions and services company VM Automation from VM Finance Group in Bulgaria. Stanislav Nikolaev, Operating Partner for EMPower Capital, agreed to answer our questions about the deal.

On November 18, 2016, CEE Legal Matters reported that Eesti Energia AS had issued EUR 500 million bonds, which were listed on London Stock Exchange. We reached out to Ivar Kurvits, who acted as the General Counsel at Eesti Energia at the time of the transaction (he is currently General Counsel at AS Inbank), to comment on the deal.

On March 13, 2017, CEELM reported that Arcus Infrastructure Partners, an independent fund manager specializing in European infrastructure, had acquired an 85% stake in Gdansk Transport Company S.A., established to work on AmberOne A1 motorway concession in Poland. We invited Toby Smith, the General Counsel for Arcus Infrastructure Partners, to share his thoughts on the company’s first transaction in Poland.

On January 18, 2017, CEELM reported that CBRE Global Investors had sold its significant CEE retail portfolio to the CPI Property Group. On April 12th, we published an interview with the General Counsel at CPI, and now we present the perspective of Roland Bebcak, the Head of Divestments CEE at CBRE Global Investors.

On January 18, 2017, CEELM reported that CPI Property Group had acquired a high quality retail portfolio, including 11 shopping centers across CEE, from CBRE Global Investors. As soon as the transaction was closed on March 29, 2017, Martin Matula, the General Counsel at CPI Property Group, agreed to share his thoughts on the deal with us.*