“Croatia has had a wave of NPL transactions which have left behind a need for more lawyers to manage the sold loan portfolios as case managers,” says Ivna Medic of Kallay & Partners in Zagreb. She reports that the Croatian businesses have recognized the need for lawyers as compliance officers and that more and more lawyers are accepting such positions.
Austria’s political scene felt some tremors in the past few weeks following snap elections. Unsurprisingly, potential coalitions became a primary subject of discussion. “The Conservatives won in a landslide, with almost 38% of the vote, with Social Democrats taking a very distant second. with around 21%,” reports DLA Piper Country Managing Partner David Christian Bauer. Another notable result of the election is the low 16% vote for the far-right Freedom Party – the recent coalition partners of the conservatives – following insinuations of corruption. “The Conservatives will most certainly form the Government and any coalition that gets formed will have to go through them,” says Bauer, emphasizing that the Freedom Party will face strong challenges to return to rule, with the scandals and “internal turmoil they’re experiencing.”
Things continue apace in Romania, according to Schoenherr Partner Matei Florea. "It’s not slow, let me put it like this,” he says. "It’s the current new normal, with very diverse projects running at very diverse speeds. We’ve had it for a couple of years and it's professionally both challenging and satisfying.”
According to JPM Senior Partner Jelena Gazivoda, Serbian law firms are doing well these days. "We are all very busy these past few months, which is good,” she says. "Notwithstanding the fact that there are different comments in newspapers, we are not really feeling any bad signs. In fact, we are all participating in some significant transactions, making us really busy.”
“The legal market in Poland is a bit challenging right now,” says Linklaters Partner Janusz Dzianachowski. “It's growing very fast and is quite dynamic. We see loads of new clients, which means new work – but also more competition.” According to Dzianachowski, more and more law firms are branding themselves “experts” in the field, but this does not “affect long-present, established firms.”
“The main thing right now is the upcoming amendment to Act on Corporations,“ starts Kinstellar Partner Tomas Cihula, describing the situation in the Czech Republic. “The Parliament is considering proposals which seek to clarify some parts of the current legislative framework and that aim to ease the regulatory burden companies are facing.“ Cihula said that this overhaul was met with “approval from the business sector.“
“It has been busy in the business arena,” says Marko Ketler, Senior Partner and Attorney at Law in cooperation with Karanovic & Partners, citing ongoing consolidation in banking sector with the potential sale of Abanka, the third largest bank in Slovenia, and recent major M&A transactions, including the sale of Intereuropa, the largest Slovenian logistics company, to Posta Slovenije. "We can expect a busy summer with several large M&A deals pending."