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Santamarina y Steta

CAMPOS ELISEOS 345, FLOORS 2, 3 AND 11, COL. CHAPULTEPEC POLANCO, 11560 MEXICO, D.F., MEXICO
Tel:
Work +52 55 5279 5400
Email:
Web:
www.s-s.com.mx
Mexico City, Monterrey, Queretaro

Latin America: International firms

Local practitioners of note (by country)

Von Wobeser y Sierra, SC’s managing partner Claus Von Wobeser is ‘pretty much the father of arbitration in Mexico’. A highly respected practitioner, he and Adrián Magallanes recently represented Anheuser-Busch in an investment treaty arbitration against the Republic of Mexico, as well as handling an ICC arbitration for a client in the port and maritime sector. Marco Tulio Venegas is also held in high regard. Practice head at Solcargo, Fernando Pérez Correa has represented Comisión Federal de Electricidad in a number of ICC arbitrations and also has experience acting as an arbitrator. At Santamarina y Steta, Fernando del Castillo is ‘an able advocate with a first-rate strategic vision’. The solid arbitration practice at González de Cossío Abogados, SC is led by Francisco González de Cossío; a member of the LCIA and president of the Centro de Arbitraje de la Industria de la Construcción, Gónzalez de Cossío is a noted practitioner with experience as counsel and arbitrator in both domestic and international arbitration cases. ‘An increasingly prominent figure’, Galicia Abogados SC’ Rodrigo Zamora Etcharren has particular expertise in handling energy and construction-related disputes as both counsel and arbitrator. Wöss & Partners’ founding partner, Herfried Wöss, has extensive experience of ICC arbitration, particularly in the energy and infrastructure sectors; he is currently president of a $200m-plus LCIA tribunal.

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Mexico

Banking and finance
Banking and finance - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

The banking and finance team at full-service Santamarina y Steta (one of the oldest firms in the country) is known for advising lenders and borrowers on secured and unsecured loans, syndicated loans, asset financing, debt exchange and restructuring, as well as corporate financing and refinancing; it is especially noted for its project finance work. The outfit also assists financial institutions of all kinds in all types of corporate and governance matters, as well as with regulatory issues. The team assisted paper company Kimberly-Clark with obtaining a loan for MXN$3bn from Banamex; and Albea Beauty Holdings with matters related to the termination of the securities granted as collateral for its senior secured bond issue. Alberto Saavedra leads the team, and focuses on banking and finance, restructuring, capital markets and corporate governance; Sergio Chagoya covers project finance, banking, capital markets and regulatory matters in relation to derivatives; Alfonso Castro has a special focus on restructuring, workouts and insolvency, which he combines with his financing practice; Juan Carlos Machorro also handles project finance. Support comes from associates Ricardo Orea and Arturo Rosette.

[back to top]

Bankruptcy and restructuring
Bankruptcy and restructuring - ranked: tier 1

Santamarina y Steta

Full-service Santamarina y Steta is unusual in the Mexican market for being ‘very strong on both the transactional and litigation sides’ of bankruptcy and restructuring, thereby making it ‘unique’. Like the other top tier firms in this practice, the team has been present on some of the most recent headline grabbing cases, including among others, assisting Geo Hogares Ideales and Abengoa with their respective $400m and $200m restructurings – both matters showcasing the firm’s main focus on the debtor side. Fernando del Castillo is a ‘guru’ in the practice area, and definitely ‘someone who stands out’. Key support comes from Alfonso Castro.

Leading lawyers

Fernando del Castillo - Santamarina y Steta

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Capital markets
Capital markets - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

Full-service firm Santamarina y Steta covers the full range of capital markets work, with recent highlights including assisting Invex Controladora with its two-tranche bond programme (for up to MXN$3.5bn) and the launch of its first public offering (for MXN$1.6bn); and Promotora Empresarial del Norte (part of Grupo Hema), on the registration of a revolving programme of long-term bonds for up to MXN$600m, as well as in the first issuance of said securities, for MXN$300m. Both mandates were led by practice co-head Sergio Chagoya. Other team members include Alberto Saavedra, and co-practice head Alfonso Castro, as well as Monterrey-based Jorge Barrero.

[back to top]

Competition and antitrust
Competition and antitrust - ranked: tier 2

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta provides a comprehensive service to its clients, covering both contentious and non-contentious matters. It is regularly involved in sensitive disputes with the regulators involving claims of anti-competitive behaviour, and also advises on cartel investigations and provides dawn raid training to clients. On the corporate front, the firm is well versed in merger clearance for clients across a range of sectors. Ernesto Duhne leads the team, which includes Jorge Barrero and Vicente Grau on the transactional side, and Mariano Calderón for contentious matters.

[back to top]

Corporate and M&A
Corporate and M&A - ranked: tier 2

Santamarina y Steta

Well-established full-service firm Santamarina y Steta advises an impressive range of domestic and international clients on their day-to-day and transactional needs. The group has experience in a broad cross-section of industries and is particularly active in mid-market M&A. Jorge Barrero, Juan Carlos Machorro, César Cruz and Jorge Léon-Orantes are all highly experienced and active partners.

[back to top]

Dispute resolution
Dispute resolution - ranked: tier 2

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta has a ‘very active’ disputes practice, with a strong track record representing major multinationals in domestic and cross-border litigation and arbitration. Blue-chip companies such as John Deere, Siemens, GM, Holcim and Abengoa are past clients, and the firm is currently representing Tesla in its Solar City related dispute concerning the enforcement of a purchase agreement. The firm is particularly strong in insolvency litigation and has a solid track record in the enforcement of arbitral awards. Fernando del Castillo and Carlos Olvera are highly respected.

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Energy and natural resources
Energy and natural resources - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta has good experience in the oil and gas, power and renewables sectors. The group is often involved in energy infrastructure projects and is also noted for its transactional and regulatory expertise. It has recently been involved in several complex restructurings in the renewables sphere. Juan Carlos Machorro heads the team.

[back to top]

Insurance
Insurance - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

The insurance practice at full-service Santamarina y Steta advises on sector-related contractual, corporate and regulatory matters, including in relation to developments issued by the CNSF and the General Direction of Insurance and Bonding of the Ministry of Finance, and to reinsurers setting up in the country. The firm has offices in Mexico City, Querétaro and Monterrey, with key contact Francsico Torres G operating from the latter, while Carlos Olvera, who combines his practice with disputes, is located in Mexico City.

[back to top]

Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta has a solid seven-lawyer IP team led by José Pablo Pérez Zea. The group is well versed in non-contentious IP matters, including trade mark advice, as well as related franchising and corporate work. It is also regularly involved in infringement actions and represents a broad range of international clients; examples have included Kimberly-Clark, Takeda, Deere & Company, and General Motors.

[back to top]

International trade and customs
International trade and customs - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

With regard to international trade and customs, full-service Santamarina y Steta provides coverage from its Mexico City and Monterrey offices, assisting clients on compliance with and taking advantage of special customs regimes and programmes to promote foreign trade, including IMMEX, Prosec and ECEX, as well with non-tariff barriers on imports and on related tax, customs and countervailing duties regulation. The practice also represents clients on statutory proceedings before the relevant authorities, as well as assisting with FTA matters. Practice head Alejandro Luna and Ernesto Dunhe are especially noted for their experience, work and client roster. Luna has over 20 years’ experience in the area, while competition practitioner Dunhe covers anti-dumping, general trade matters and rules of origin. Other team members include tax specialist Mariano Calderón, who handles constitutional, administrative and tax litigation, and associate Karina Robledo, who also handles tax matters.

[back to top]

Labour and employment
Labour and employment - ranked: tier 2

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta’s well-regarded employment team forms an important part of the firm’s wider offering. The group offers the full range of services, across individual and collective labour matters, social security, corporate support, and litigation. Clients benefit from the expertise of several key lawyers, including Juan Carlos De La Vega in Monterrey, and Andrés Rodríguez. Pedro Velasco is no longer a partner at the firm, but still works as an adviser.

Leading lawyers

Juan Carlos De La Vega - Santamarina y Steta

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Projects and infrastructure
Projects and infrastructure - ranked: tier 2

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta has a proud history in the infrastructure sphere, where it regularly acts for lenders, sponsors and public-sector bodies, and also has strong experience in major highways, telecoms, and waste-to-energy projects. It has had a significant role advising Abengoa on the refinancing and divestment of several major projects in its portfolio. Juan Carlos Machorro and Sergio Chagoya are key figures in the practice.

[back to top]

Real estate
Real estate - ranked: tier 2

Santamarina y Steta

Full-service Santamarina y Steta is a real estate stalwart, with offices in Mexico Ciy, Monterrey, Querétaro and Tijuana. The 10-strong team acts for developers, constructors, administrators, trustees and realtors on transactional, finance and development matters, having recently assisted General Motors with the negotiations for the amendment to a Master Agreement for the sale of a 17,500 square metre property to Grupo Sordo Madaleno, in exchange for the acquisition of a portion of a 18,200 square metre property and of a 2,750 square metre property, for the value of MXN$1.5bn. Tijuana-based Aarón Levet has over 25 years’ practice experience and a focus on the tourism sector; in Mexico City, Vicente Grau also covers project finance and infrastructure, and has handled loan refinancings, guarantee restructuring, acquisitions, leases, and project development. In Monterrey, César Cruz A also handles real estate matters. Associates Bárbara Asiain, Miguel Ernesto Beltrán R, Christian Burges S, Andrea Cavazzani S, Marcela Flores G, Luis Carlos Gómez P and Gabriela Harfush Haua all provide support. Clients include BMO Harris Bank, Intrawest Resort Ownership, Fukoku, and Haitian Huayuan Mexico. Gloria Park has left the firm.

[back to top]

TMT
TMT - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta is a full-service firm with institutionalised clients that it advises on transactional and regulatory TMT-related work. Leading the team is Jorge León Orantes, who specialises in telecommunications, media and technology, e-commerce and privacy and data protection, as well as in corporate governance; he is supported by senior associate Paola Morales Vargas, who is active in the same areas but also has expertise in aerospace and satellite matters. Other lawyers who handle work in this sector are Pablo Laresgoiti in Mexico City (e-commerce) and César Cruz in Monterrey (e-commerce and privacy and data protection). Clients include The Hershey Company, EMC Computer Systems Mexico, and Blue Buffalo.

Next generation lawyers

Paola Morales Vargas - Santamarina y Steta

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Tax
Tax - ranked: tier 4

Santamarina y Steta

The tax team at full-service Santamarina y Steta mainly lends support to the firm’s corporate, transactional and bankruptcy and restructuring departments, with issues regarding state and federal taxes, transfer pricing, representation before the tax authorities and social security. The five-strong practice group is led by Mariano Calderón, who has over 20 years’ experience in the practice, and whose specialisation includes tax, constitutional and administrative litigation, anti-money laundering, and international trade. Key support comes from senior associate Karina Robledo, who also covers anti-money laundering and international trade; and senior tax counsel Agustín Gutiérrez, who has over 30 years’ experience in fiscal matters.

Next generation lawyers

Karina Robledo - Santamarina y Steta

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Latin America: International firms

Local practitioners of note (by country)

Von Wobeser y Sierra, SC’s managing partner Claus Von Wobeser is ‘pretty much the father of arbitration in Mexico’. A highly respected practitioner, he and Adrián Magallanes recently represented Anheuser-Busch in an investment treaty arbitration against the Republic of Mexico, as well as handling an ICC arbitration for a client in the port and maritime sector. Marco Tulio Venegas is also held in high regard. Practice head at Solcargo, Fernando Pérez Correa has represented Comisión Federal de Electricidad in a number of ICC arbitrations and also has experience acting as an arbitrator. At Santamarina y Steta, Fernando del Castillo is ‘an able advocate with a first-rate strategic vision’. The solid arbitration practice at González de Cossío Abogados, SC is led by Francisco González de Cossío; a member of the LCIA and president of the Centro de Arbitraje de la Industria de la Construcción, Gónzalez de Cossío is a noted practitioner with experience as counsel and arbitrator in both domestic and international arbitration cases. ‘An increasingly prominent figure’, Galicia Abogados SC’ Rodrigo Zamora Etcharren has particular expertise in handling energy and construction-related disputes as both counsel and arbitrator. Wöss & Partners’ founding partner, Herfried Wöss, has extensive experience of ICC arbitration, particularly in the energy and infrastructure sectors; he is currently president of a $200m-plus LCIA tribunal.

[back to top]

Mexico

Banking and finance
Banking and finance - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

The banking and finance team at full-service Santamarina y Steta (one of the oldest firms in the country) is known for advising lenders and borrowers on secured and unsecured loans, syndicated loans, asset financing, debt exchange and restructuring, as well as corporate financing and refinancing; it is especially noted for its project finance work. The outfit also assists financial institutions of all kinds in all types of corporate and governance matters, as well as with regulatory issues. The team assisted paper company Kimberly-Clark with obtaining a loan for MXN$3bn from Banamex; and Albea Beauty Holdings with matters related to the termination of the securities granted as collateral for its senior secured bond issue. Alberto Saavedra leads the team, and focuses on banking and finance, restructuring, capital markets and corporate governance; Sergio Chagoya covers project finance, banking, capital markets and regulatory matters in relation to derivatives; Alfonso Castro has a special focus on restructuring, workouts and insolvency, which he combines with his financing practice; Juan Carlos Machorro also handles project finance. Support comes from associates Ricardo Orea and Arturo Rosette.

[back to top]

Bankruptcy and restructuring
Bankruptcy and restructuring - ranked: tier 1

Santamarina y Steta

Full-service Santamarina y Steta is unusual in the Mexican market for being ‘very strong on both the transactional and litigation sides’ of bankruptcy and restructuring, thereby making it ‘unique’. Like the other top tier firms in this practice, the team has been present on some of the most recent headline grabbing cases, including among others, assisting Geo Hogares Ideales and Abengoa with their respective $400m and $200m restructurings – both matters showcasing the firm’s main focus on the debtor side. Fernando del Castillo is a ‘guru’ in the practice area, and definitely ‘someone who stands out’. Key support comes from Alfonso Castro.

Leading lawyers

Fernando del Castillo - Santamarina y Steta

[back to top]

Capital markets
Capital markets - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

Full-service firm Santamarina y Steta covers the full range of capital markets work, with recent highlights including assisting Invex Controladora with its two-tranche bond programme (for up to MXN$3.5bn) and the launch of its first public offering (for MXN$1.6bn); and Promotora Empresarial del Norte (part of Grupo Hema), on the registration of a revolving programme of long-term bonds for up to MXN$600m, as well as in the first issuance of said securities, for MXN$300m. Both mandates were led by practice co-head Sergio Chagoya. Other team members include Alberto Saavedra, and co-practice head Alfonso Castro, as well as Monterrey-based Jorge Barrero.

[back to top]

Competition and antitrust
Competition and antitrust - ranked: tier 2

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta provides a comprehensive service to its clients, covering both contentious and non-contentious matters. It is regularly involved in sensitive disputes with the regulators involving claims of anti-competitive behaviour, and also advises on cartel investigations and provides dawn raid training to clients. On the corporate front, the firm is well versed in merger clearance for clients across a range of sectors. Ernesto Duhne leads the team, which includes Jorge Barrero and Vicente Grau on the transactional side, and Mariano Calderón for contentious matters.

[back to top]

Corporate and M&A
Corporate and M&A - ranked: tier 2

Santamarina y Steta

Well-established full-service firm Santamarina y Steta advises an impressive range of domestic and international clients on their day-to-day and transactional needs. The group has experience in a broad cross-section of industries and is particularly active in mid-market M&A. Jorge Barrero, Juan Carlos Machorro, César Cruz and Jorge Léon-Orantes are all highly experienced and active partners.

[back to top]

Dispute resolution
Dispute resolution - ranked: tier 2

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta has a ‘very active’ disputes practice, with a strong track record representing major multinationals in domestic and cross-border litigation and arbitration. Blue-chip companies such as John Deere, Siemens, GM, Holcim and Abengoa are past clients, and the firm is currently representing Tesla in its Solar City related dispute concerning the enforcement of a purchase agreement. The firm is particularly strong in insolvency litigation and has a solid track record in the enforcement of arbitral awards. Fernando del Castillo and Carlos Olvera are highly respected.

[back to top]

Energy and natural resources
Energy and natural resources - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta has good experience in the oil and gas, power and renewables sectors. The group is often involved in energy infrastructure projects and is also noted for its transactional and regulatory expertise. It has recently been involved in several complex restructurings in the renewables sphere. Juan Carlos Machorro heads the team.

[back to top]

Insurance
Insurance - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

The insurance practice at full-service Santamarina y Steta advises on sector-related contractual, corporate and regulatory matters, including in relation to developments issued by the CNSF and the General Direction of Insurance and Bonding of the Ministry of Finance, and to reinsurers setting up in the country. The firm has offices in Mexico City, Querétaro and Monterrey, with key contact Francsico Torres G operating from the latter, while Carlos Olvera, who combines his practice with disputes, is located in Mexico City.

[back to top]

Intellectual property
Intellectual property - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta has a solid seven-lawyer IP team led by José Pablo Pérez Zea. The group is well versed in non-contentious IP matters, including trade mark advice, as well as related franchising and corporate work. It is also regularly involved in infringement actions and represents a broad range of international clients; examples have included Kimberly-Clark, Takeda, Deere & Company, and General Motors.

[back to top]

International trade and customs
International trade and customs - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

With regard to international trade and customs, full-service Santamarina y Steta provides coverage from its Mexico City and Monterrey offices, assisting clients on compliance with and taking advantage of special customs regimes and programmes to promote foreign trade, including IMMEX, Prosec and ECEX, as well with non-tariff barriers on imports and on related tax, customs and countervailing duties regulation. The practice also represents clients on statutory proceedings before the relevant authorities, as well as assisting with FTA matters. Practice head Alejandro Luna and Ernesto Dunhe are especially noted for their experience, work and client roster. Luna has over 20 years’ experience in the area, while competition practitioner Dunhe covers anti-dumping, general trade matters and rules of origin. Other team members include tax specialist Mariano Calderón, who handles constitutional, administrative and tax litigation, and associate Karina Robledo, who also handles tax matters.

[back to top]

Labour and employment
Labour and employment - ranked: tier 2

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta’s well-regarded employment team forms an important part of the firm’s wider offering. The group offers the full range of services, across individual and collective labour matters, social security, corporate support, and litigation. Clients benefit from the expertise of several key lawyers, including Juan Carlos De La Vega in Monterrey, and Andrés Rodríguez. Pedro Velasco is no longer a partner at the firm, but still works as an adviser.

Leading lawyers

Juan Carlos De La Vega - Santamarina y Steta

[back to top]

Projects and infrastructure
Projects and infrastructure - ranked: tier 2

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta has a proud history in the infrastructure sphere, where it regularly acts for lenders, sponsors and public-sector bodies, and also has strong experience in major highways, telecoms, and waste-to-energy projects. It has had a significant role advising Abengoa on the refinancing and divestment of several major projects in its portfolio. Juan Carlos Machorro and Sergio Chagoya are key figures in the practice.

[back to top]

Real estate
Real estate - ranked: tier 2

Santamarina y Steta

Full-service Santamarina y Steta is a real estate stalwart, with offices in Mexico Ciy, Monterrey, Querétaro and Tijuana. The 10-strong team acts for developers, constructors, administrators, trustees and realtors on transactional, finance and development matters, having recently assisted General Motors with the negotiations for the amendment to a Master Agreement for the sale of a 17,500 square metre property to Grupo Sordo Madaleno, in exchange for the acquisition of a portion of a 18,200 square metre property and of a 2,750 square metre property, for the value of MXN$1.5bn. Tijuana-based Aarón Levet has over 25 years’ practice experience and a focus on the tourism sector; in Mexico City, Vicente Grau also covers project finance and infrastructure, and has handled loan refinancings, guarantee restructuring, acquisitions, leases, and project development. In Monterrey, César Cruz A also handles real estate matters. Associates Bárbara Asiain, Miguel Ernesto Beltrán R, Christian Burges S, Andrea Cavazzani S, Marcela Flores G, Luis Carlos Gómez P and Gabriela Harfush Haua all provide support. Clients include BMO Harris Bank, Intrawest Resort Ownership, Fukoku, and Haitian Huayuan Mexico. Gloria Park has left the firm.

[back to top]

TMT
TMT - ranked: tier 3

Santamarina y Steta

Santamarina y Steta is a full-service firm with institutionalised clients that it advises on transactional and regulatory TMT-related work. Leading the team is Jorge León Orantes, who specialises in telecommunications, media and technology, e-commerce and privacy and data protection, as well as in corporate governance; he is supported by senior associate Paola Morales Vargas, who is active in the same areas but also has expertise in aerospace and satellite matters. Other lawyers who handle work in this sector are Pablo Laresgoiti in Mexico City (e-commerce) and César Cruz in Monterrey (e-commerce and privacy and data protection). Clients include The Hershey Company, EMC Computer Systems Mexico, and Blue Buffalo.

Next generation lawyers

Paola Morales Vargas - Santamarina y Steta

[back to top]

Tax
Tax - ranked: tier 4

Santamarina y Steta

The tax team at full-service Santamarina y Steta mainly lends support to the firm’s corporate, transactional and bankruptcy and restructuring departments, with issues regarding state and federal taxes, transfer pricing, representation before the tax authorities and social security. The five-strong practice group is led by Mariano Calderón, who has over 20 years’ experience in the practice, and whose specialisation includes tax, constitutional and administrative litigation, anti-money laundering, and international trade. Key support comes from senior associate Karina Robledo, who also covers anti-money laundering and international trade; and senior tax counsel Agustín Gutiérrez, who has over 30 years’ experience in fiscal matters.

Next generation lawyers

Karina Robledo - Santamarina y Steta

[back to top]


Legal Developments in Mexico

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • Notorious Marks

    Notorious marks or the declaration thereof, has always been an issue widely discussed in Mexico by the IP legal community. This is so because provisions of the Paris Convention dealing with this topic have for a long time been uses as an effort to cancel or nullify trademarks registered by Mexican authorities without really making an extensive evaluation of proposed denominations and without examining in depth if such marks may be potentially affecting rights acquired by third parties elsewhere. So, a specific regulation and legal frame that at least tries to resolve this issue is always a good start in the right direction.
  • FRANCHISING TRENDS IN MEXICO: A NEW VALUE

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  • DEMONSTRATING USE OF TRADEMARKS UNDER MEXICAN LAW AND PRACTICE

    The evolution in the protection and enforcement of IP rights has also reached the Mexican practice. The traditional ways of defending a registered trademark on a non use contentious procedure have developed.
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    By Jose Luis Ramos-Zurita