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German lawyer Thomas Mundry has been living and working in Russia since 1994. He advises both Western and Russian clients on investment, financing, and other projects in the Russian Federation. His sphere of activity covers a wide range of industries, including automotive manufacturing and supply industry, oil and gas, chemicals, engineering, retail, food and consumer goods, the fashion industry, and IT.

The Deal: In September 2017, CEE Legal Matters reported that the Moscow offices of Clifford Chance and CMS had advised on USD 850 million pre-export financing provided by 11 international banks for Uralkali, one of the world’s largest potash producers. On July 27, 2018, CEE Legal Matters reported that the two firms had advised on another Uralkali financing, this time involving a USD 825 million facility provided by 14 Russian and international banks.We reached out to both firms for more information about this most recent deal.

On March 9, 2018, CEE Legal Matters reported on the expansion of the European act legal alliance with the addition of Hungary’s Ban Karika law firm and Fort Advocaten from the Netherlands. With the alliance now counting 13 offices in Europe – including five in CEE – CEE Legal Matters sat down with Sven Tischendorf of act legal Germany, AC Tischendorf Rechtsanwälte to learn more about the alliance’s plans.

Vera Kolesnik is Nestle’s Legal Director for Russia and Eurasia. Before joining Nestle in 2007 she worked for four years at Ernst & Young and for five years at the Institute of State and Law at the Russian Academy of Science.

Ondrej Plesmid is the Chief Legal Officer at King’s Casino in the Czech Republic. His career as a lawyer started in a small law office, and he subsequently worked for over three years in the Czech Ministry of Finance and then the Ministry of Regional Development. In 2017 he moved to the private sector and started to work at King’s Casino.

On July 9, 2018, CEE Legal Matters reported on the launch of Suciu | The Employment Law Firm ⎯ a new boutique law firm in Romania specializing in Employment law: . We sat down with the new firm’s Managing Partner, Andreea Suciu, to learn more about what her new boutique will bring to the legal market.

The Deal: On April 25, 2018, CEE Legal Matters reported that Clifford Chance had advised Czech Media Invest on its acquisition of Lagardere’s sale of its radio businesses in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Romania. Herbert Smith Freehills and Wolf Theiss advised Lagardere on the deal.

Freshfields boasts of its “international mobile lawyers” – but, in this part of the world, few are as international or mobile as Freshfields’ Partner Sebastian Lawson.

The Deal: On October 4, 2017, CEE Legal Matters reported that Dentons’ Bratislava office had advised CNIC Corporation Ltd., an investment company owned by the Chinese government, on its acquisition of Prologis Park Galanta-Gan in Slovakia – which Dentons described as “the largest logistics asset, both by area and investment volume, ever sold in the CEE region” – from Prologis, and that Kinstellar had advised Prologis on the deal.

On January 11, 2018, CEE Legal Matters reported that Dentons advised the London branch of UniCredit Bank AG and MUFG as coordinators on a EUR 750 million revolving credit facility provided by a group of 13 banks to MOL Plc, the Hungarian multinational oil and gas company. CMS advised MOL on the deal, which represented the largest financing deal in Hungary in 2017.

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.

Erika Papp Takes Over from Gabriella Ormai as Managing Partner at CMS Hungary

On May 25, 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation finally came into effect, imposing new requirements on organizations within the European Union and on those outside the EU that offer goods or services to EU data subjects or monitor their behavior. To learn more about the state of readiness in one such country, we spoke to Schoenherr attorney and Data Protection specialist Eva Bajakova in Prague.

On January 4, 2018 CEE Legal Matters reported that Schoenherr had advised BUWOG AG and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer had advised Vonovia SE on Vonovia’s voluntary public takeover bid of BUWOG. The takeover offer placed the enterprise value of BUWOG at around EUR 5.2 billion. We reached out to several of the individuals involved in the deal for information: Christian Herbst, Partner, Schoenherr and Thomas Zottl, Partner, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer 

Tim Pfister, Managing Partner at Knoetzl in Vienna, is an American lawyer with over 35 years of experience. In addition to his management responsibilities at Knoetzl, Pfister acts as counsel, advising clients and colleagues on New York law matters and regarding conflicts in international transactions, cross-border financings, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, corporate crisis management, and corporate strategic planning. He moved to Austria in 2013 and was a founder of Knoetzl in 2016.  

Patricia Gannon is a founder and Senior Partner at Karanovic & Nikolic, where she focuses primarily on the management, business development, strategy, and expansion of the firm. Gannon qualified as a Solicitor in Ireland and after a short period working at the European Commission in Brussels she moved to Serbia and founded the firm. She is a committed advocate of corporate philanthropy, and was amongst the founding members of the Serbian Charity Forum, an umbrella forum of leading foundations in the country.

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