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Editorial

Index of tables

  1. Banking and finance: Geneva
  2. Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Leading individuals

  1. 1

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Geneva clients in Switzerland using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact david.burgess@legal500.com.

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The ‘very professional and pragmatic’ banking and finance practice at Lenz & Staehelin covers regulatory and financing matters and provides further assistance in relation to corporate lending, financial products and fintech. Practice head Shelby du Pasquier advised private equity company Unigestion on its acquisition of Akina, while investment management expert François Rayroux continues to act as Swiss Counsel to ISDA. Credit Agricole Financement and Orox Asset Management are other active clients. Recommended counsel Laurence Vogt Scholler, Fedor Poskriakov and Olivier Stahler are other names to note.

The Geneva-based practice of Baker McKenzie is especially known for its regulatory and securitisation expertise. An exemplary highlight of the latter is Frédéric Bétrisey’s advice to Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank in relation to the arrangement of residential mortgage-backed securities worth CHF200m. The Canton of Geneva is another longstanding client. Martin Anderson is a key contact.

Bär & Karrer Ltd.’s banking and finance team advises financial institutions, including Swiss and national subsidiaries of international banks, as well as insurance companies on regulatory and transactional matters, but also represents them in enforcement and criminal procedures. The client roster includes Banque Cantonale de Genève, UBS and Credit Suisse. Cédric Chapuis heads the team, which also fields banking litigation expert and ‘brilliant strategist with good cross-border connections’ Saverio Lembo. Christophe Buchwalder joined Gantey Attorneys.

BianchiSchwald LLC’s ‘reactive and efficient’ team engages in regulatory and commercial banking, investment as well as criminal and contentious matters related to the industry. Typical clients include banks, asset managers, security dealers, private equity companies and investment funds. Practice lead Thomas Goossens and Thierry Amy further participate in think tanks set up by the firm in the light of major banking and investment industry changes.

The team at ‘well-reputed and highly competentFBT Attorneys-at-Law is ‘very experienced in all legal aspects related to the fund industry and wealth management’. Headed by the ‘excellent’ Frédérique Bensahel, the group also handles regulatory banking aspects, enforcement procedures from financial authorities and industry-related dispute resolution. Recent highlights include assisting clients with their compliance programs and advising asset managers on anti-money laundering investigations by the FDF. The ‘excellent listener and knowledgeablePierre-Olivier Etique is also recommended, as is Jean-Louis Tsimaratos for his ‘analytical skills’.

The ‘very client-oriented and responsiveLalive delivers ‘outstanding services’ in litigation against banks by applying ‘aggressive’ methods; however, ‘strong practical advice’ is also provided on regulatory issues. Marc Henzelin often represents high-net worth individuals in asset freezing, fraud and wrongful execution matters and jointly heads the practice with Alexander Troller, who is an ‘exceptional practitioner with unrivalled technical expertise’. ‘Effective’ litigator Sandrine Giroud is also recommended.

The Geneva team of Pestalozzi Attorneys at Law Ltd provides ‘solid work’ in relation to regulatory, transactional and contentious matters. The ‘calm’ Sébastien Roy handles financing, contractual and regulatory aspects, while Christophe Emonet specialises in litigation and FINMA investigations. The team advised HSBC and a syndicate of banks on the financing of ChemChina’s $43bn public tender offer to acquire Syngenta and also represented a Russian oligarch against a Swiss private bank in a liability matter.

Clients ‘feel in safe hands’ with ‘client-focused and pragmatic’ firm Schellenberg Wittmer Ltd and can rely on ‘timely responses’ for regulatory, investment management, FINMA authorisation and litigation matters. The Geneva practice supported Credit Suisse Funds regarding the establishment and FINMA approval of the Swiss Mortgage Umbrella Fund. Team lead Caroline Clemetsonhas the best know-how about collective investment schemes’; the ‘logical and reasonable’ Grégoire Wuest and newly promoted partner Tarek Houdrouge are also recommended.

Froriepis a reliable partner with a very strong level of availability, expertise and knowledge’ and covers both regulatory and cross-border financing work as well as advice on the Collective Investment Schemes Act. The team advised lead arranger ING Bank regarding a facility granted to MET Holding and further assisted Longbow Finance with an application for authorisation to FINMA. Jean-Luc Herbez has a ‘unique set of skills and experience on every banking subject’, while Jérôme de Montmollin ‘understands the clients’ needs’. Another name to note is head of the Russia/CIS desk Dmitry Pentsov.

Gillioz Dorsaz & Associés’ practice possesses ‘great theoretical and practical knowledge’, resulting in ‘competent legal opinions’. The team focuses on advising on investment transactions, compliance matters, fintech and regulatory work. In a highlight, the group advised two banks on regulatory and compliance matters related to the Financial Market Infrastructure Act. The main contact for clients is the ‘sensible and experienced’ Géraldine Badel Poitras, who joined from Vecchio Avocats in April 2017, while Christian Valentini and Damien Cand are also active in transactional and contentious matters.

Jacquemoud Stanislas covers regulatory, compliance and contentious aspects of both public and private banking matters. Recent highlights include advice to banks and asset managers relating to the amendment of the Federal Act on Combating Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing, the set-up of investment vehicles and debt financings as well as litigation concerning the release of frozen bank accounts. Philippe Jacquemoud and Jean-Pierre Jacquemoud are the names to note.

Mangeat Attorneys at Law LLC exhibits an ‘outstanding professional approach and sense of client relationships’ and provides ‘structured, relevant and extremely valuable advice’, mainly in relation to asset management and anti-money laundering. The ‘responsive, dynamic and pragmaticFabien Aepli assisted an asset management company with a provisional freezing measure that was imposed on the client by a Liechtenstein bank and also represented BCM & Partners before the FINMA concerning a collective investment scheme matter application. Senior associates Nurith Cohen and Fanny Margairaz are recommended as ‘very professional and helpful’.

The four-partner team at Meyerlustenberger Lachenal Ltd handles regulatory, financial product, investment fund and litigation matters. Jean-Christophe Liebeskind advised UBS on establishing securitisation instruments for the financing of oil trade transactions in China worth $650m and the team also assists Landolt & Cie and Banque CIC Suisse on an on going basis. Team lead Christophe Rapin provides expertise on banking regulations such as MiFID, while Alain Le Fort also practices asset recovery. Nicolas Didisheim is the main contact for private banking.

Oberson Abels Ltd provides expertise on regulatory and contractual matters, collective investment schemes, licensing in the banking sector as well as financing transactions. The team, which at partner level consists of Antoine Amiguet and Philipp Fischer, assisted the Swiss subsidiary of a banking group with the review of financial product distribution agreements as well as contract and form updates. The group also advised asset managers on license applications to become Swiss fund managers and assisted an international organisation with a social impact bond project.

Python’s banking team is recommended for its ‘good industry knowledge and responsiveness’, working on licensing, investment fund, anti-money laundering, compliance, litigation and FINMA matters. Jean-Yves Rebord has particular expertise in financial products, while practice lead Nicolas de Gottrau provides ‘very good legal analysis and advice’.

Walder Wyss is recommended for its ‘overall excellent level of service’, especially with regards to drafting non-standard documents and commodity trade finance. The team assisted Safra Sarasin with the acquisition of all shares in Credit Suisse Monaco and Credit Suisse Gibraltar. Practice head Patrick Vogel is supported by the ‘client-oriented, efficient and hands-on’ Hubertus Hillerström, who ‘can cope with all kinds of requests’ and made partner in 2018.

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Press releases

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Legal Developments in Switzerland

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • 17 February 2017: Auris Medical's Public Equity Offering

    Auris Medical Holding AG (NASDAQ: EARS) issued and priced its public offering of 10,000,000 common shares and 10,000,000 warrants, each warrant entitling its holder to purchase 0.70 of a common share.  The common shares and warrants are being sold in units comprised of one common share and one warrant at the public offering price of USD 1.00 per unit. The warrants will be immediately exercisable at a price of USD 1.20 per common share and are exercisable for five years. In connection with the offering, the Company has granted the underwriter a 30-day option to purchase up to 1,500,000 additional common shares and/or 1,500,000 additional warrants at the public offering price less underwriting discounts. The offering is expected to close on or about February 21, 2017, subject to customary closing conditions. Roth Capital Partners is acting as sole book-running manager in the offering. Maxim Group LLC is acting as a financial advisor in the offering.
  • 16 February 2017: Credit Suisse successfully launched its new subsidiary Credit Suisse (Switzerland)

    Credit Suisse (Switzerland) Ltd. was incorporated with the purpose to be organized as a Swiss bank. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of Credit Suisse AG. The transfer of assets and liabilities according to Swiss merger law became effective on 20 November 2016. The transfer was aimed to evolve the legal entity structure of the Credit Suisse Group to meet regulatory requirements for systematically important banks.
  • 14 February 2017: BASF acquires Rolic Group

    BASF acquires Rolic, a Swiss based group offering innovative and forward-thinking solutions, particularly in the display and security industries as well as the optical film business.
  • 15 February 2017: gategroup CHF 300 mio. bond issuance

    gategroup successfully raised CHF 300 million through the issuance of a fixed rate 5-year senior bond with a final maturity on February 28, 2022. The bond with a coupon of 3% p.a. has been issued by gategroup Finance (Luxembourg) S.A. and is guaranteed by its parent company gategroup Holding AG. gategroup will apply for the listing of the new bond on the SIX Swiss Exchange.
  • 17 February 2017: RWS acquires LUZ, Inc.

    RWS Holdings plc, a world leading provider of intellectual property support services (patent translations, international patent filing solutions and searches), commercial translations and linguistic validation, has completed the acquisition of 100% of LUZ, Inc., a market leading Life Sciences language services provider based in San Francisco, for a cash consideration of USD82.5m.
  • 17 February 2017: Cembra Money Bank acquires invoice financing provider SWISSBILLING SA

    Cembra Money Bank has reached an agreement to acquire 100% of the shares of SWISSBILLING. The transaction is expected to close within the first quarter of 2017. The transaction consideration was below CHF 10 million and is expected to have a negative impact of 0.1% on the Group’s CET1 ratio as at closing.
  • 7 February 2017: TPF closes private offering and bank financing

    Transports publics fribourgeois Trafic (TPF TRAFIC) SA closed the financing of its maintenance and exploitation centre in the canton of Fribourg. The financing was partly made through a CHF 40 mio. private placement, a CHF 32 mio. secured bank loan and a CHF 55 mio. unsecured bank loan.
  • 3 February 2017: Migros acquires Tipesca

    The Migros Group, through Mérat & Cie. SA, has acquired Tipesca SA, a company incorporated in the canton of Tessin. Tipesca offers a wide range of fish products.
  • 24 January 2017: Sharp Corporation and Skytec Group Limited enter into strategic business alliance

    Japan-based Sharp Corporation, part of Taiwan’s Foxconn Group, enters into a strategic business alliance with Skytec Group Limited (“Skytec”) regarding the manufacture and sale of Sharp branded products and services in Europe. For that purpose, Sharp acquires a majority stake of 56.7% in the newly incorporated joint venture Skytec UMC Ltd.
  • 25 January 2017: Zug Estates CHF 100 mio. Bond

    Zug Estates Holding AG (SIX: ZUGN) has successfully issued its first CHF 100 mio. fixed-interest bond with a 0.7% coupon and a 5-year maturity.

Press Releases in Switzerland

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to