The Legal 500

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BOULEVARD DE L'EMPEREUR 3 KEIZERSLAAN, 1000 BRUSSELS, BELGIUM
Tel:
Work +32 2 551 15 15
DX:
43 BAB
Email:
Web:
www.liedekerke.com
Brussels, Kinshasa, London

Belgium

Banking, finance and capital markets
Banking, finance and capital markets - ranked: tier 2

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick's¬†practice head¬†Jan Vincent Lindemans¬†and¬†Freya Mareels¬†specialise in banking and finance transactions and debt restructurings; their wide-ranging expertise spans areas such as leveraged finance, asset-based lending, structured finance and project finance. In 2017, Mareels was the lead adviser to New York-based private equity firm Argand Partners on the Belgian law aspects of the financing of its acquisition of Oase from Equistone. Lindemans assisted the Veldeman Group and PMF Finance with negotiating an amendment and restatement of existing facilities with KBC Bank.¬†Tom Van Dyck¬†is a go-to for advice on financial regulation, which includes funds regulation (UCITS and AIFMD), insurance regulation (PRIIPS and IDD) and MiFID II. Another notable individual is¬†Wim Dedecker, who has a strong track record in debt and equity capital markets transactions, and recently acted for Belfius Bank as a joint bookrunner on Xior Student Housing's ‚ā¨134m¬†rights issue and accelerated private placement bookbuilding.

Leading individuals

Jan Vincent Lindemans - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Next generation lawyers

Freya Mareels - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

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Commercial, corporate and M&A
Commercial, corporate and M&A - ranked: tier 2

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick's corporate and finance team is highlighted for its 'swift response and hands-on approach, that is straight to the point'. Practice head Christel Van den Eynden¬†and counsel¬†Wim Dedecker¬†‚ÄĒwho recently joined the firm from Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP¬†‚ÄĒ led a team that acted for Proximus on its acquisition of IT company¬†Codit, this included coordinating local counsel across France, the UK, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Malta and Portugal. In another work highlight, a team led by¬†Damien Conem¬†advised Sonaca on its negotiations for a joint venture with¬†Sabena Aerospace Engineering, aimed at offering maintenance and update services to military aircraft.¬†Jacques Meniuer¬†joined the team from Fieldfisher¬†and has particular expertise handling private equity and capital market transactions. Thierry Tilquin left the firm.

Leading individuals

Christel Van den Eynden - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

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Competition: Belgian law
Competition: Belgian law - ranked: tier 3

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick has a strong pedigree in the Belgian competition law sphere, with its practice head Stefaan Raes having experience of serving as a judge at the Brussels Court of Appeal, and as the president of the Belgian Competition Authority. In private practice, Raes' competition law expertise is complemented by his knowledge about related areas, such as market practices and intellectual property. Raes and Simone Nudelholc are representing Proximus in litigation centred on a dispute with cable network operators over its cable network access. Other active clients include Multipharma, Uber and ABB Industrial Solutions.

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Dispute resolution
Dispute resolution - ranked: tier 2

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Among Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick's recent caseload, Nicolas Angelet successfully defended the Belgian state in civil proceedings brought by survivors and heirs of the 1994 Rwandan genocide. Aimery De Schoutheete and Arnaud Nuyts ('a powerful advocate') are also highly regarded practitioners. In January 2019, Hakim Boularbah and counsel Olivier Van Der Haegen moved to Loyens & Loeff.

Leading individuals

Aimery de Schoutheete - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

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EU regulatory: Financial services
EU regulatory: Financial services - ranked: tier 2

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick has been assisting asset managers and financial institutions with Brexit restructuring matters. In one highlight, department head Tom Van Dyck led the advice to MoneyGram on the regulatory aspects of relocating its EU office from the UK to Brussels. Other areas of instruction include market abuse matters, MiFID II implementation, and Bank Recovery and Resolution Directive work.

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Employment
Employment - ranked: tier 2

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Paul Geerebaert ('who always strives to find the best solutions') leads Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick's team, which has a 'pragmatic approach' to, among other areas, contentious work, collective dismissals, discrimination claims, and transactional support matters. Managing partner Vincent Busschaert is also a name to note.

Leading individuals

Paul Geerebaert - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Vincent Busschaert - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

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Environment
Environment - ranked: tier 1

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

As a full-service firm, Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick is well placed to advise on the environmental law aspects of real estate and corporate transactions. In addition, its dedicated team provides significant input in the development of projects in areas such as energy, transport and infrastructure. The group, which is 'pleasant to work with' and provides 'to-the-point advice', is also sought out in its own right for specific issues, such as waste management, pesticides, permitting and soil pollution. François Tulkens is leading the advice to the Brussels Capital Region on a number of high-profile noise limitation cases. Other key figures are Dominique Devos and counsel Filip De Preter, who are working with real estate partner Yves Delacroix to assist Ikea with the environmental law issues associated with the development of new stores in Belgium. Total, Vastint Belgium, Bofas and DP World also engage the firm on environmental matters. The practice also generates work from various Flemish public authorities. Vincent Ost and Dirk Lindemans are other names to note.

Leading individuals

Dominique Devos - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

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Fraud and white-collar crime
Fraud and white-collar crime - ranked: tier 2

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Magda Vandebotermet heads Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick's practice, which has established expertise in representing clients from the healthcare, real estate, environment, food, and public sector areas in a range of fraud and white-collar issues. Senior attorney Kay Goyens is another name to note.

Leading individuals

Magda Vandebotermet - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Next generation lawyers

Kay Goyens - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

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Industry focus: Retail
Industry focus: Retail - ranked: tier 1

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick¬†is highlighted for its breadth of experience and regularly assists clients across the¬†retail and consumer goods sector, with clients including¬†Ikea Belgium,¬†Lidl and The Absolut Company.¬†Etienne Kairis¬†is leading a team defending Belgian-based company Sport Direct in cease and desist proceedings brought by UK-based sportsdirect.com. The practice also acted for AG Real Estate on the ‚ā¨425m sale of the Woluwe Shopping Center complex located in Brussels.¬†Commercial lawyer Olivier Vanden Berghe¬†and Yves Delacroix, who leads the firm's¬†real estate and regulatory practice, are other key names to note.

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Industry focus: Transport
Industry focus: Transport - ranked: tier 3

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

The transport team at Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick 'is experienced and fields a range of experts that provide support across a broad spectrum of transport issues'. Clients include Eurostar, Sonaca and DHL International. The department is assisting SNCB with regulatory issues relating to passenger and consumer rights, and has referred a preliminary question to the Court of Justice of the European Union. Counsel Jean Pierre Kesteloot, who is 'a pleasure to work with and understands clients' needs', heads the practice and has broad transport and insurance expertise.

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Industry focus: energy
Industry focus: energy - ranked: tier 1

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick handles a range of matters for clients including EDF Luminus, Veolia and Fluxys and is highlighted for its 'in-depth knowledge of multiple facets of European, federal and regional energy law'. A team led by practice head Damien Verhoeven advised Elia on regulatory considerations relating to its infrastructure project for the development of a modular offshore grid. In another work highlight, the group acted for Brookfield Asset Management on the Belgian aspects of its $46bn acquisition of Westinghouse Electric Company from Toshiba Holding. François Tulkens, Olivier Vanden Berghe and Vincent Ost are other key names to note particularly for regulatory, contractual and public procurement advice, respectively. Thibaut Hollanders was recently promoted to the partnership.

Leading individuals

Damien Verhoeven - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

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Insolvency and restructuring
Insolvency and restructuring - ranked: tier 2

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

The insolvency and finance litigation team at Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick handles a range of advisory and contentious insolvency matters. It acted for Mount Street Mortgage Servicing in enforcement proceedings in Belgium concerning the recovery of a mortgage-backed claim under a facilities agreement entered into with various Gibraltar-based entities. Roel Fransis led a team acting for the liquidators of Gemeentelijke Holding in a ranking conflict between secured creditors. The group also has experience acting for debtors, and assisted Hotel Berlaymont with the Belgian aspects of a court-supervised restructuring. Paul Vandepitte jointly heads the practice with Fransis.

Next generation lawyers

Roel Fransis - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

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Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 2

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick provides 'pragmatic advice' across the full range of IP matters. The firm has seen an uptick in contentious work; recent highlights include practice head Etienne Kairis ('a tough but amenable litigator') successfully acting for a prominent lingerie manufacturer in a trade mark infringement dispute. Of counsel Bernard Vanbrabant is well known for handling complex licensing agreements. Counsel Sarah van den Brande was a new arrival from CURIA in April 2019.

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Real estate and construction
Real estate and construction - ranked: tier 1

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick's 'excellent' team attracts praise for its 'all-round expertise covering all areas of real estate'. Transactional work is a core area of instruction; recent work includes assisting AG Real Estate with the ‚ā¨400m sale of the Woluwe Shopping Center, and advising Belfius Bank on acquiring an office building development, which is to be built by real estate developer Artone. Befimmo is another key client for the firm. Yves Delacroix, who is 'an excellent negotiator' and 'a true dealmaker', heads the department. Alexandre Emond,¬†senior associate Julie De Bonnet¬†and tax specialist¬†Pierre Desenfans¬†are also noted.

Leading individuals

Alexandre Emond - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Yves Delacroix - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Next generation lawyers

Julie De Bonnet - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

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Tax
Tax - ranked: tier 1

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick's team stands out for its 'top of the league expertise' in the gamut of contentious and non-contentious tax matters, under the leadership of practice head Jean-Michel Degée. It is praised for being 'professional, well informed and always up-to-date'. In addition, it is 'able to work efficiently within tight deadlines'. The group was strengthened in February 2018 by the arrival of counsel An Weyn, who has vast experience of advising family businesses and private clients, from Tiberghien. In other developments, real estate tax expert Pierre Desenfrans made partner, while Steven Peeters (who is knowledgeable about the tax aspects of M&A, financings, refinancings and restructurings) was promoted to counsel. In addition to real estate tax and other transactional tax work, the firm has a standout reputation for tax disputes; 'its experience can make the difference in difficult and complex litigation'. Transfer pricing litigation makes up a significant portion of the caseload. On a related note, Daniel Garabedian was recently admitted to the bar of the Belgian Court of Cassation, joining Simone Nudelholc as two of only 20 practitioners in Belgium. Laurence Pinte, who has previously headed up the tax department of a listed international group in the financial sector, is also noted. Henk Verstraete moved to Stibbe.

Leading individuals

Daniel Garabedian - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Jean-Michel Degée - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Next generation lawyers

An Weyn - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

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Belgium

Offices in Brussels

Legal Developments by:
Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

  • FSMA MiFID Action Plan announced

    Like in many of our neighboring countries, the Belgian Financial Services and Markets Authority (FSMA) is taking a more persistent approach in pursuing compliance with MiFID conduct of business. In that regard it has announced a ‚ÄúMiFID Action Plan‚ÄĚ.
    - Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick

Legal Developments in Belgium

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