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CMS

LENNÉSTRASSE 7, 10785 BERLIN, GERMANY
Tel:
Work +49 30 20 36 00
Fax:
Fax +49 30 20 36 0 2000
Email:
Web:
www.cms.law
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Germany

Antitrust
Antitrust - ranked: tier 3

CMS

CMS’ ten-partner antitrust practice is considered a good address for cross-border merger control proceedings; the team here benefits from the close collaboration with the Brussels office. Christian Haellmigk handled the international merger control proceedings for Atlas Copco in connection with the sale of DYNAPAC to the French FAYAT group, while Harald Kahlenberg advised Ceratizit on the acquisition of the majority shares in Becker Diamantwerkzeuge. The firm is also visible in damage claims, where it acts both on the plaintiff and defendant side; it is involved in proceedings in the context of the truck, confectionary and sugar cartels. Another focus lies on distribution antitrust law; Dietmar Rahlmeyer assists RIMOWA, while regular client Porsche seeks the advice of practice head Markus Schöner.

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Compliance
Compliance - ranked: tier 3

CMS

There are no limits toCMS’ ‘motivation and efficiency’; clients, including various national and international automotive companies, financial services providers and DAX30 corporations, also praise the team’s ‘agile responsiveness in time-critical matters’. Noteworthy instructions included advising Volkswagen and Audi on dieselgate matters including a review of compliance and governance structures, and acting for a former board member of HypoVereinsbank (HVB) in Cum-Ex-related issues and an internal investigation. The ‘assertive and savvy’ Harald Potinecke assisted Augustinum Seniorenresidenz with an internal investigation following various property transactions, while the team advised Implenia on a compliance due diligence audit as part of an M&A transaction. Other key areas of expertise include handling criminal, antitrust and employment law compliance work alongside money laundering checks and product compliance matters including product recalls. Florian Block was elevated to the partnership in early 2017 and in August 2016, Thomas Sonnenberg joined the team from Sal. Oppenheim.

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Employment
Employment - ranked: tier 1

CMS

Praised for its ‘direct strategic approach’ and ‘to-the-point advice’ which ‘includes practical solutions rather than theoretical analysis’, CMS’ broad practice covers the full spectrum of employment law, including trend topics such as data protection and the employment of external personnel. The team acts for well-known clients from various industries and was recently instructed by Audi to assist with issues arising from dieselgate and with a compliance and governance review. In other work, the team advised E.ON on employment law and worker participation issues pertaining to the separation of E.ON business operations, and assisted Hewlett Packard with a large outsourcing project as part of HPE Enterprise Service business’ international restructuring. Clients single out Antje-Kathrin Uhl for her ‘pragmatic approach’, while Christopher Jordan ‘works strategically’ and ‘focuses on the overall outcome and not only on the legal implications’. ‘Goal-oriented’ and ‘strong negotiator’ Eckhard Schmid co-heads the team with Oliver Simon. Björn Gaul and Gerlind Wisskirchen are also recommended.

Leading individuals

Björn Gaul - CMS

Gerlind Wisskirchen - CMS

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Private equity
Private equity - ranked: tier 3

CMS

At CMS, Christoph Lächler and Jochen Lux made partner at the start of 2017 in the group headed by Tobias Schneider and Oliver Wolfgramm. The practice is mainly active in the mid-cap arena and, according to clients, offers a ‘very high level of service’. The most recent beneficiaries of this were capiton regarding the acquisition of the Gemaco Group, Oakley Capital regarding the sale of a majority stake in Parship and Elitepartners to ProSiebenSat.1, as well as Seafort regarding the sale of the Dieter Braun Group to DBAG. The group demonstrated its international competence when advising DBAG on the sale of its shares in Broetje Automation to Shanghai Electric. Next to acting for investors, assisting medium-sized companies regarding the sale to private equity firms also plays a major role. An example from 2016 is advising shareholders of the Hamm-Reno-Group on the sale to capiton and shoe retailer Ziylan.

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Tax
Tax - ranked: tier 4

CMS

Frequently working in conjunction with colleagues across various departments, CMS’ strength lies in handling matters at the intersection of tax, corporate and transactional law and in dealing with succession planning and inheritance tax issues. Thomas Link advised PWREF III Holding on tax law matters arising from the acquisition of a cinema portfolio, and assisted PWREF II Holding Sarl with the tax structuring of the acquisition and project development of a high-rise building in Frankfurt. On the private client and compliance side, the team frequently handles contentious work such as financial court proceedings, disputes between shareholder groups and criminal tax law allegations. Heino Büsching heads the team, which lost Gerd Seeliger to SKW Schwarz Rechtsanwälte in July 2016.

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Trade and distribution
Trade and distribution - ranked: tier 1

CMS

Singled out for its ‘very high service level’, CMS’s team led by Robert Budde assists a number of German SMEs alongside leading automotive industry players with the full spectrum of commercial and distribution law. The client roster includes long-standing client Porsche, who regularly instructs Markus Schöner with distribution and distribution antitrust law matters. In other work, Gerald Gräfe advised Kärcher on the establishment of a joint venture with the French Tokheim Service Group in order to manage the sales and maintenance of car wash facilities in Europe and Africa. New client Bitburger Braugruppe retained the team to advise on the termination of all commercial agency agreements and the standardisation of worldwide distribution contracts. Ulrich Becker and Florian Block were elevated to the partnership in January 2017.

Leading individuals

Robert Budde - CMS

Next generation lawyers

Gerald Gräfe - CMS

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Germany: Banking and finance

Investment funds
Banking and finance: Investment funds - ranked: tier 3

CMS

With ‘deep legal expertise, very good industry knowledge and networks and large engagement and problem-solving awarenessCMS’ ‘coordinated’ and ‘quick and reliable’ team covers fund structuring and transactions, investor advice and regulatory and tax compliance in asset classes such as real estate, debt and renewable energy and ‘regularly keeps an eye on the economic interests of managers and investors’. Besides longstanding clients such as Universal Investment, Aquila and Jamestown it also gained Union Investment and German Estate Group (GEG) as new clients, the latter subsequent to the acquisition of a real estate ensemble consisting of Frankfurt-based high-rise buildings for introduction into an investment structure for institutional investors. The team also advises Chorus Clean Energy on legal and tax matters regarding the structuring and documentation of a closed-ended umbrella fund and regularly assists WillisTowers-Watson with five investments of a company pension fund, an employee pension fund and a contractual trust arrangement in various target funds based in Luxembourg and the UK. The ‘quick, good and out-of-the-box thinking’ Daniel Voigt is recommended for his ‘combination of economic knowledge, legal expertise and pragmatic negotiation skills’, Tilman Kempf focuses on investment tax law and Andrea München, who joined in 2016 as counsel and regulatory lawyer from DLA Piper, gives ‘the quickest German-Luxembourg legal advice at the highest standards’.

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Lending and borrowing
Banking and finance: Lending and borrowing - ranked: tier 3

CMS

Clients continue to have ‘good experiences’ with CMS’ finance practice, which gradually has expanded its original focus on the corporate side to also advising banks and private equity sponsors, such as Oaktree. The firm recently saw an increased work load in connection with public takeover offers and cross-border matters, including assisting Coherent with the financing of the takeover of ROFIN-SINAR Technologies, which is listed in New York and Frankfurt, in all relevant jurisdictions. The team is also strong in real estate finance: It advised Allianz on the participation in a credit line for Invesco for the refinancing of existing real estate financings and the financing of further real estate acquisitions in various jurisdictions, and another client was GEG regarding the financing of the acquisition of the International Business Campus in Frankfurt. Other clients in the area include pbb Deutsche Pfandbriefbank and Savills. The team based in Hamburg is very active in the financing and refinancing of ships. Kerstin Block was promoted to partner at the start of 2017. Markus Pfaff and Marc Seibold head the practice.

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Project finance
Banking and finance: Project finance - ranked: tier 2

CMS

CMS is known in particular for its activity in the renewable energy sector and is here highly active in the financing of wind farm projects, both in Germany and abroad. Recent highlights include advising Luxara on the acquisition and financing of onshore wind project Egersund in South Norway from the Norwegian project developer Norsk Vind Energi and assisting WIRCON with the financing of the largest solar park in the Netherlands. For Partners Group and InfraRed Capital Partners the team handled the acquisition of the majority share in the corporation, which holds the project rights for Merkur offshore wind farm and the parallel project financing of the offshore wind park. Other clients include DEG and John Laing Group. The key figure is the frequently recommended Marc Riede in Hamburg, where Kerstin Block was promoted to partner at the start of 2017.

Leading individuals

Marc Riede - CMS

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Germany: Capital markets

Debt capital markets
Capital markets: Debt capital markets - ranked: tier 4

CMS

CMS’ debt capital market practice advises mainly on Schuldschein loans and the establishment and restructuring of commercial paper and EMTN programmes. In September 2016 and again in February 2017 the firm assisted the lead managers with the issue of a public loan of hsh finanzfonds AöR with fixed interest rate and an issue volume of €750m. It furthermore advised the joint arranger Bayerische Landesbank and Société Générale on the debut placement of a Schuldschein loan of Agrial Group. Oliver Dreher is the key figure; he also regularly advises German and international commercial banks on derivatives business.

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Equity capital markets
Capital markets: Equity capital markets - ranked: tier 5

CMS

CMS advises on equity capital markets often in close collaboration with the M&A, energy and restructuring practices, amongst others, and has particular expertise in the field of stock dividends. The firm recently assisted longstanding key client Capital Stage with the legal aspects of the successful takeover offer to the shareholders of CHORUS Clean Energy and again advised on the payment of a stock dividend. It also acted for Bankhaus Metzler as underwriter in the capital increase of Pantaleon Entertainment. Andreas Zanner leads the practice and Philipp Melzer is also recommended.

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Germany: Compliance

Internal investigations
Internal investigations - ranked: tier 4

CMS

CMS’ client roster includes various national and international companies in the automotive sector, such as Volkswagen and Audi, financial services providers and other listed companies. Both car manufacturers retained the team with dieselgate matters including a review of compliance governance structures. In equally high-profile work, the team advised a former member of HypoVereinsbank’s management board on Cum-Ex issues, while Harald Potinecke assisted Augustinum Seniorenresidenz with an internal investigation into various property transactions. Implenia instructed the practice with a compliance due diligence review for an M&A transaction. The team is also adept at handling contentious and non-contentious criminal antitrust and employment law matters and at carrying out money laundering investigations. In August 2016, Thomas Sonnenberg joined the team from Sal. Oppenheim and, in early 2017, Florian Block was elevated to the partnership.

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Germany: Corporate and M&A

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

CMS

Traditionally, the ‘solution- and service-focused’ corporate group at CMS mainly acts for mid-market companies, however it has strategically been expanding its client base to include large, international corporations such as eBay and Telefónica. Most recently, it acted on corporate structure, SE form-changing conversions and joint ventures next to some public takeovers and compliance mandates; in this area, assisting Audi and Volkswagen with the Dieselgate scandal was particularly prominent. Another highlight was advising Volkswagen Truck & Bus on entering into a cooperation with commercial vehicle manufacturer Navistar, which includes joint purchasing and technology development. On this matter, Hilke Herchen led advice; she co-leads the group together with Maximilian Grub and Ernst-Markus Schuberth. Harald Potinecke is recommended for corporate compliance, Martin Kuhn for group law and restructuring and Malte Bruhns is ‘not only an outstanding corporate lawyer, but also very commercially minded’. Thomas Sonnenberg joined the team from an in-house position at Triton in August 2016, while Tobias Grau and Christoph Lächler made partner in early 2017.

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M&A: Large international deals (€500m+)
Corporate and M&A: M&A: Large international deals (€500m+) - ranked: tier 3

CMS

CMS’ good network especially in Europe, with a focus on Southeastern Europe, is regarded to be particularly advantageous by clients for outbound business. In 2016, Telefónica Deutschland, for example, retained the group for the sale of mobile towers following the spin-off of the group to Telxius. Another highlight was advising the Partners Group as the lead investor of a consortium on the joint acquisition of a majority stake in the company, which holds the project rights to the Merkur offshore wind farm. Maximilian Grub, Hilke Herchen and Ernst-Markus Schuberth co-lead the practice, in which Thomas Meyding and Christian von Lenthe are also recommended. Thomas Sonnenberg joined from Triton in August 2016 and Tobias Grau, Christoph Lächler, Jochen Lux and Michael Wangemann made partner in early 2017.

Leading individuals

Thomas Meyding - CMS

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M&A: mid-sized domestic deals (€100m-€500m)
#Corporate and M&A: M&A: mid-sized domestic deals (€100m-€500m) - ranked: tier 2

CMS

With 65 partners at eight locations, CMS’ M&A practice led by Maximilian Grub, Hilke Herchen and Ernst-Markus Schuberth is one of the largest in the market in terms of team size. Nationally, lawyers such as the Stuttgart-based Karsten Heider and Henrik Drinkuth handle small and medium-sized transactions. Here, two lawyers were promoted to the partnership, as well as one in Leipzig and one in Munich; in Cologne, Thomas Sonnenberg joined from an in-house position at Triton. The group advised Hamm Reno Group on the sale of the majority of its shares to the financial investor Capiton, shoe retailer Ziylan and others in a bidding process. Other transactions came from the real estate and insurance sectors, while regulated industries are also a focus.

Leading individuals

Thomas Meyding - CMS

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M&A: mid-sized international deals (€100m-€500m)
Corporate and M&A: M&A: mid-sized international deals (€100m-€500m) - ranked: tier 3

CMS

Since opening an office in Tehran, CMS has increasingly been advising domestic companies on entering the Iranian market. Generally, the group assists both German companies with acquisitions abroad and international companies with inbound transactions; recently, some Chinese companies retained the group for acquisitions in Germany. Maximilian Grub, Hilke Herchen and Ernst-Markus Schuberth lead the 65-strong team, which is spread over eight locations and has five new partners: Thomas Sonnenberg joined in August 2016 from an in-house position at Triton and Tobias Grau, Christoph Lächler, Jochen Lux and Michael Wangemann made partner in early 2017. In addition, Oliver Wolfgramm and Thomas Meyding are recommended.

Leading individuals

Thomas Meyding - CMS

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Germany: Dispute resolution

Arbitration (including international arbitration)
Dispute resolution: arbitration (including international arbitration) - ranked: tier 1

CMS

CMS puts significant emphasis on investment arbitrations with Klaus Sachs frequently acting as chairman or arbitrator. Other work pertains to corporate disputes, joint ventures and M&A, most notably in the industrial plant engineering and energy sectors. As another key individual of the team, Dorothee Ruckteschler represents clients before national and international arbitral tribunals and demonstrates particular expertise in acting in contentious corporate purchase agreement matters and shareholder disputes.

Leading individuals

Dorothee Ruckteschler - CMS

Klaus Sachs - CMS

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Commercial litigation
Commercial litigation - ranked: tier 2

CMS

CMS is particularly active in corporate and post-M&A litigation, insolvency appeals and liability disputes. Claus Thiery and Dorothee Ruckteschler are well versed in handling matters of the latter, while insolvency appeals are predominantly handled by Frank Grünen, who also has solid expertise in the energy sector. Other key figures include Torsten Lörcher and Matthias Schlingmann; the latter acts in several Iran-related proceedings before the courts of the European Union.

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Product liability
Dispute resolution: Product liability - ranked: tier 2

CMS

With a focus on medical, pharmaceutical, food and manufacturing sector work, CMS’ Jens Wagner assisted the medical device manufacturer DePuy with matters pertaining to its voluntary recall of ADEPT and ASR hip implants, while, counsel Patrick Müller-Sartori has been handling a recall instruction for a food industry client. Harald Potinecke heads the team, which lost counsel Thomas Grünvogel to Osborne Clarke.

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Germany: IT and outsourcing

Data protection
IT and outsourcing: data protection - ranked: tier 2

CMS

Also in data protection matters CMS positions itself with a broad practice and besides a high volume of GDPR-related mandates also covers data protection aspects of transactions, outsourcings and cloud computing as well as CBR and data security. In 2017 the team assisted an international outsourcing service provider on data protection issues during a complex BPO from Germany to the Philippines and advised the credit insurer Euler Hermes and the financial service provider Eos on data protection in connection with the sale of their joint subsidiary. A steady flow of work also stems from the firm’s regular data protection advice to Ströer and the Sparkassen-Finanzgruppe. Reemt Matthiesen and Christian Runte are the key figures.

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Information technology (including contracts)
IT and outsourcing: information technology (including contracts) - ranked: tier 1

CMS

CMS particularly stands out for its strong focus on digitalisation topics across industries and the team led by the renowned Sebastian Cording has deep expertise in IoT platforms, Fin-, Med- and InsureTech and digital innovation products. It recently often advised on smart contracting solutions, the automatisation of production capacities, the connected car and blockchain projects. Apart from the firm’s digital business group the IT practice also continues to handle traditional IT matters and in 2017 focused particularly on high-volume technology transactions and software projects. Recent highlights include assisting Sharp Electronics with an SAP project and the introduction of smart energy solutions; advising German insurer AXA on the joint venture Meine Gesundheit with CompuGroup Medical regarding the establishment of digital solutions for the healthcare insurance sector; and also acting for the credit insurer Euler Hermes and the financial services provider Eos in IT matters in connection with the sale of the joint subsidiary Bürgel Wirtschaftsinformation to the Italian credit bureau CRIF. The team also covers IT procurement, copyright disputes and licence and contract IT matters. Other clients include eBay, Ströer and Siemens.

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Outsourcing
IT and outsourcing: outsourcing - ranked: tier 1

CMS

CMS acts for providers and customers regarding outsourcings in the insurance, technology and in particular in the finance industry and advises on the entire spectrum of ITOs, BPOs and managed operations. The team continuously assists a management consultancy firm with an outsourcing project for a German food corporation and advised a technology provider regarding the tender of an award procedure for an IT outsourcing. Expertise also lies in advising on troubled IT outsourcing. Markus Häuser and Philipp Lotze are well known.

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Germany: Industry focus

Energy
Industry focus: energy - ranked: tier 2

CMS

Regulatory - ranked: tier 1

CMS

CMS offers ‘very good industry knowledge paired with a reasonable price-performance ratio in the energy sector’. Practice head Christian Haellmigk has ‘extraordinary expertise in antitrust matters in the energy sector as well as very good tactical sense in dealing with authorities’. Since January 2016, he has been representing distribution system operator Netze BW before the regional court of Stuttgart in litigation worth over €30m concerning the local high-voltage and high-pressure networks. Also recommended is commercial lawyer Jochen Lamb, who advised Munich’s public utility company in a bidding process for the acquisition of a geothermal power plants holding company. In another matter, he assisted energy supplier EnBW with the structuring of the Hohe See wind farm. Advising British Wind Energy on the sale of the offshore wind farm project Deutsche Bucht was another highlight for the Hamburg-based Holger Kraft (renewable energy) and Fritz von Hammerstein (environment and planning). The latter has also been advising Hamburg’s water company in litigation concerning the extraction of water since 2010. Christiane Kappes was promoted to the partnership in January 2017.

Leading individuals

Fritz von Hammerstein - CMS

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Healthcare and life sciences
Industry focus: healthcare and life sciences - ranked: tier 2

CMS

In the health sector, CMS mainly acts on competition law, in particular in connection to pharmaceutical advertising, patent, food and cosmetics matters. However, the group also has profound expertise handling regulatory issues regarding rebate law. For example, Jörn Witt – who leads the practice together with Thomas Manderla – advised Elanco on pharma, competition and distribution matters as well as on product protection and counterfeit issues. Bayer retained the group for advice on research, development and licensing contracts. Food sector clients include brewery Bitburger Braugruppe and mineral water distributer Gerolsteiner Brunnen, while L’Oréal relies on the group for cosmetics law assistance. Other work included numerous compliance instructions. Jens Wagner is the name to note for product liability law. Counsel David Ziegelmayer left for LEXANTIS.

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Telecoms
Industry focus: telecoms - ranked: tier 2

CMS

Transactions - ranked: tier 1

CMS

Jens Neitzel’s group at CMS is increasingly active handling regulatory work, with particular expertise in network access and outsourcing project matters. Cisco Systems retained the group for assistance with the introduction of new business models, platforms and services and counsel Daniel Hofmann advised Ecostar, which is part of the Hughes Network, on satellite communications matters. Contentious work includes representing EWE TEL in appeal proceedings against the regulatory order Vectoring I; and representing Vodafone Kabel Deutschland in litigation against Telekom Deutschland concerning the allegedly improper increase of fees for the shared use of cable ducts as well as in numerous administrative proceedings against cities and municipalities concerning the laying of telecommunication lines. In 2017, advice on subscriber lines increased; in this area, 1&1 Versatel was advised on monthly and non-recurring charges and EWE TEL was represented in proceedings against the September 2016 regulatory order and the subscriber line standard offer process.

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Germany: Insurance

Advice to insurers
Insurance: advice to insurers - ranked: tier 3

CMS

Recognised for its broad offering, CMS advises national and international insurance companies and insurance brokers on issues related to entering the German market alongside product design, regulatory and M&A matters. Team head Winfried Schnepp advised Delvag on insurance supervisory, corporate and employment law issues pertaining to the merger with its subsidiary Delvag Rück, and assisted a private-customer insurer with insurance law matters concerning its entry into the German market. Similarly, JLT Risk Solutions has also been receiving German market entry advice and advice on setting up a German branch, while Lombard International Assurance receives regular assistance with product design matters. Insurance supervision law specialist Stefan Segger left the firm in October 2016 to open Ince & Co Germany LLP’s second German office in Cologne.

Leading individuals

Winfried Schnepp - CMS

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Insurance litigation
Insurance: insurance litigation - ranked: tier 2

CMS

CMS puts significant focus on large-scale liability and damage claims, including client representations in D&O proceedings featuring banking and insolvency law elements. Team head Winfried Schnepp continues to represent the city of Cologne in damage claim proceedings brought by several private lenders of art artefacts and estates before the Regional Court of Cologne for the collapse of the Cologne city archives.

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Germany: Intellectual property

Patent litigation
Intellectual property: patent litigation - ranked: tier 3

CMS

With a ‘good service level’ and ‘quick response timesCMS continues its strong patent practice advising companies in the mid-sized sector, but also acts for global clients. The team centres around Markus Deck, who ensures ‘a straightforward cooperation’, Matthias Eck and Gerd Schoenen in the automotive and life sciences sectors and here particularly in medical engineering and biotechnology. Another important pillar of the practice is the firm’s work for clients in the consumer goods industry. Highlights included the representation of mechanical engineering company Hinterkopf in patent infringement proceedings and the continuous advice to the Swabian energy supplier Albwerk and a company in the Faulhaber group. The team furthermore acted for machine tool manufacturer Trumpf in patent infringement and nullity proceedings.

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Trade marks and unfair competition
Intellectual property: trade marks and unfair competition - ranked: tier 1

CMS

With eight offices across Germany CMS is one of the domestic heavyweights in trade mark and competition law and well positioned both for giving strategic advice and handling portfolio management and representing clients in contentious matters. The IP practice led by Thomas Manderla and Jörn Witt regularly acts for numerous clients, such as 1. FC Köln, in trade mark and competition law matters, but also has broad expertise in design law. Recently the team advised the symphony orchestra Gewandhaus zu Leipzig on the drafting of sponsoring contracts and the redesign of the brand identity and handled design matters and framework supply agreements for Tredy Handels GmbH. It also represents Eyeo in six principal proceedings and several injunction proceedings around the permissibility of online ad blocking; and assisted the Melitta, a German company selling coffee and coffee-making appliances, with competition law proceedings. Another area of expertise lies in domain law matters, such as successfully concluding a dispute for Apologistics with an Austrian internet company, and in connection with press, freedom of speech and copyright law. The firm is a founding member of the European Legal Technology Association, which was established in autumn 2016. Heike Blank is ‘quick’, ‘engaged’ and ‘competent’ and renowned Gordian Hasselblatt is also recommended.

Leading individuals

Gordian Hasselblatt - CMS

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Germany: Media

Entertainment
Media: Entertainment - ranked: tier 1

CMS

Digital content - ranked: tier 1

CMS

CMS no doubt belongs to the league of firms most present in advising on the digital transformation of the economy and handles the entire spectrum of copyright, unfair competition, licensing and regulatory matters at a cross-border level for media clients, on the one hand, while on the other hand also assisting companies outside of the entertainment sector with media law issues. While advice on digital business models is a clear focus of the practice led by Sebastian Cording, in 2017 the team also saw a rise in disputes related to digital topics: It represented the Association of German Funeral Homes in proceedings at the Federal Court of Justice regarding the information duties of operators of online price comparison portals; assisted Netlantic in landmark proceedings on virtual video recorders; and successfully represented Eyeo in eight parallel landmark proceedings against Handelsblatt and ProSiebenSat1.Digital, among others, regarding the admissibility of ad blockers. Other clients include the media company MPLC Deutschland concerning performing and demonstration rights; Joker Productions regarding film and licence law matters; and the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry on the copyright assessment of Streamripper online services. Due to Pietro Graf Fringuelli’s expertise the firm also has an outstanding reputation in the sports sector; here one media law client among others is the World ESports Association.

Leading individuals

Winfried Bullinger - CMS

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Press and publishing
Media: Press and publishing - ranked: tier 2

CMS

CMS advises an impressive number of publishing and broadcasting companies and online providers on the entire spectrum of press law and freedom of speech, but is also sought out by presenters and prominent figures for crisis communication, in the case of false media coverage and regarding privacy matters. The team represented Norddeutschen Rundfunk (North German Broadcasting) in landmark proceedings concerning the procedure of dissemination requirements for parallel counterstatements on TV and the internet, assists Gruner + Jahr and the publisher Morgenpost with copyright, competition and freedom of speech matters, including freedom of speech proceedings, and also advises several ARD institutions on press law and freedom of speech. Practice head Michael Fricke is ‘a master of his trade’.

Leading individuals

Michael Fricke - CMS

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Germany: Private equity

Venture capital
Private equity: Venture capital - ranked: tier 1

CMS

In line with the increased demand from clients, CMS is increasingly advising accelerators. For example, it assisted Proptech Accelerator Blackprint with the launch of the fund as well as with ongoing investments. The group acted on numerous financing rounds, both on the investor and bidder side, including advising Outfittery on the $22m growth financing and assisting Gastrohero with a financing round with Genui Partners. At a value of €43.5m, Breath Therapeutics’ series A financing round – with Gimv, Sofinnova and Gilde Healthcare as investors – was extraordinarily large. The Munich-based Stefan-Ulrich Müller led advice on this matter, while the founders of Media Partisans, operators of the heftig.co website, retained the Berlin-based Jörg Zätzsch for its sale to Funke Mediengruppe.

Leading individuals

Jörg Zätzsch - CMS

Stefan-Ulrich Müller - CMS

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Germany: Public sector

PPP
Public sector: PPP - ranked: tier 1

CMS

CMS handles PPP projects both for public sector clients, mostly from the infrastructure, services and construction areas, and private companies; prominent areas are fund structurings and energy sector projects. On behalf of the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, Cologne-based co-practice head Christian Scherer-Leydecker handled the procurement matters related to an expert opinion for the optimisation of operator models for federal roads. Gerd Leutner advised Cofiroute and Toll Collect on the award of the contract for the expansion of the truck toll to 40,000km of federal roads. Another highlight for the team, led by Hamburg-based co-practice head Hermann Müller, was advising the state of Schleswig-Holstein on its University Hospital’s €1.7m real estate PPP. Daniel Voigt assisted Chorus Clean Energy with the structuring and documentation of a €200m umbrella fund.

Leading individuals

Christian Scherer-Leydecker - CMS

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Planning and environment
Public sector: Planning and environment - ranked: tier 2

CMS

In the area of environmental and planning law, CMS handles planning approval procedures and public construction law matters, environmental law issues (including contaminated waste) and transaction-related questions as well as providing product-related advice. Practice head Fritz von Hammerstein represents TenneT TSO in several third-party appeal proceedings before the federal administrative court, which have emerged from proceedings of Naturschutzbund Deutschland and private objectors against the planning approval decision for the transmission line from Ganderkesee to St. Hülfe; in addition, he is regularly involved in approval procedures for wind farms, such as work for British Wind Energy on the wind farm German Bight. Stuttgart-based environmental law specialist Ursula Steinkemper advises the Austrian energy supplier Verbund on approval and planning approval procedures under water law concerning several hydropower plants, which also includes waste material matters in addition to water and nature conservation legislation. Hamburg-based Christiane Kappes, who made partner at the start of 2017, has been advising Femern since 2011 on the planning approval procedure for the project for the motorway and railway tunnel Fehmarn Belt Fixed Link; most recently, the team has focused on dealing with objections to the plan revision procedure. A waste law highlight was the representation of IGG Interessengemeinschaft der Grenzhändler in proceedings at the European Commission on the one-way deposit.

Leading individuals

Fritz von Hammerstein - CMS

Next generation lawyers

Ursula Steinkemper - CMS

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Public procurement
Public sector: Public procurement - ranked: tier 3

CMS

At CMS, practice head Volkmar Wagner and Stefan Höß focus on the IT sector, while Jakob Steiff handles healthcare and waste management instructions, Christian Scherer-Leydecker acts on defence and PPP projects and Hermann Müller specialises in infrastructure sector work including concessions. Like Matthias Kuß, almost all partners are experienced in handling construction sector instructions. In Düsseldorf, Thorsten Schätzlein, who made partner in the beginning of 2017, specialises in building and telecoms contracts. Scherer-Leydecker issued a legal opinion to the Federal Ministry of Transport, which aims at contributing to the improvement of federal highway operator models. Besides regularly representing GE Healthcare Buchler in bid procedures concerning the AOK federal association’s tenders for contrast agents, Steiff also assisted the city of Frankfurt am Main with selecting investors for the construction and operation of a multipurpose hall. Wagner advises the nuclear waste management company JEN on awarding construction and dismantling work for a nuclear research facility.

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Germany: Real estate and construction

Construction (including construction litigation)
Real estate and construction: Construction (including construction litigation) - ranked: tier 1

CMS

CMS draws on a wealth of expertise in advising clients in the building construction, infrastructure and plant construction sectors. Since the end of 2016, Nicolai Ritter has been advising AS+P Albert Speer & Partner on a landscape and oasis project in Saudi Arabia, which included advice on payment and default risks. As another highlight, he provided contractual law assistance to a company involved in expanding the design-outlet centre Wolfsburg. Cologne-based Martin Krause acted for new client Immofinanz Float in contractual matters pertaining to the development of the office complex FLOAT in Düsseldorf. In other significant work, Andreas Roquette continues to advise Hochtief Infrastructure on various matters; recently these included technical supplements and the renegotiating of project contracts. Frankfurt-based Johanna Hofmann, Hamburg-based Christiane Kappes and Thorsten Schätzlein in Düsseldorf were elevated to the partnership in early 2017.

Leading individuals

Martin Krause - CMS

Next generation lawyers

Nicolai Ritter - CMS

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

CMS

CMS has ‘a good reputation for good reason’ and provides ‘excellent services including targeted advice and pragmatic and economically viable solutions’, while clients also appreciate the ‘quick response times as well as the team’s ability to call upon additional colleagues on short notice when required’. Hamburg-based Sebastian Orthmann, who is singled out for his ‘in-depth knowledge’ and ‘thorough work’, advised Berenberg and Universal-Investment on the acquisition of the mixed-use property Wilhelmgalerie in Potsdam from a Deutsche Asset Management fund, and Union Investment on the acquisition of an international shopping centre portfolio form Credit Suisse. The team in Berlin is co-led by Andreas Otto and Matthias Kuß and praised for its ‘good and professional advice in complex and demanding deals’; it assisted AOK with the sale-leaseback of 42 real estate properties in north-eastern Germany. Other key individuals include Stuttgart-based Volker Zerr and Frankfurt-based Heinrich Schirmer, who both ‘provide professional and reliable assistance’; the latter assisted Allianz Real Estate Germany with the acquisition of an office building development in Munich, and, together with Johanna Hofmann, who was elevated to the partnership in early 2017, he advised DIC Asset on the sale of an office real estate portfolio with a total value of €143m. Hamburg-based Christiane Kappes and Düsseldorf-based Thorsten Schätzlein were also made partner.

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Germany: Restructuring and insolvency

Insolvency
Restructuring and insolvency: Insolvency - ranked: tier 4

CMS

Under Alexandra Schluck-Amend’s lead CMS’s restructuring and insolvency team advises insolvency administrators, banks and companies in various sectors on distressed transactions, financial and operational restructurings and self-administration proceedings. Michael Frege was appointed as insolvency administrator of HRB Tailor. In another highlight Niklas Lütcke acted as insolvency administrator of video-technology provider Clipkit. Daniel Kamke is well versed in bond financings and Joachim Kühne is also recommended.

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Restructuring
Restructuring and insolvency: Restructuring - ranked: tier 3

CMS

CMS is considered a broad practice in the restructuring market, which covers advice on financial and operative restructurings and distressed M&A transactions. In the sale and acquisition of distressed companies the firm acts both on investor and seller side. It is also well versed in contentious matters with a focus on the prevention of liability risks. Besides advising clients in the banking and financial services industry the portfolio also includes insolvency administrators, companies and investors. The team is increasingly active on an international level; recently counsel Christoph Poertzgen and Rolf Leithaus advised the English insolvency administrator of the distressed firm King & Wood Mallesons, which seeks the firm’s advice regarding the wind-up of its German offices. The practice is led by Alexandra Schluck-Amend; Daniel Kamke has expertise in debt financings. The team’s sector expertise depends on the office: in Baden-Württemberg the focus lies on the automotive sector, in northern Germany on shipping. Michael Wangemann was promoted to partner in January 2017.

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Germany: Transport

Maritime and shipping
Transport: Maritime and shipping - ranked: tier 1

CMS

Ship financing - ranked: tier 1

CMS

The seven-strong team at CMS covers the full spectrum of maritime business law including ship financing and restructuring. Clients include shipowners, shipyard operators and logistics companies alongside banks and insurance firms, but the team also handles regular instructions from Hamburg-based shipping lines and foreign investors. Renowned team head Jan Wölper also acts for container and tanker shipping companies and is well versed in dealing with ship accident matters and arbitration proceedings, regularly acting as a arbitrator. As a highlight, Jost Kienzle and Christoph Zarth assisted the shipbuilding company Lürssen with the acquisition of the Blohm+Voss shipyard from the British investor, Star Capital. The team has been acting in several matters pertaining to the insolvency of an international shipping company, which has added considerably to its current workload. Kerstin Block was made partner.

Leading individuals

Jan Wölper - CMS

Jost Kienzle - CMS

Next generation lawyers

Christoph Zarth - CMS

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Further information on CMS

Please choose from this list to view details of what we say about CMS in other jurisdictions.

Latin America: International firms

Legal Developments by:
CMS

  • Access to justice: protective costs orders in planning challenges

    Third parties and competing developers have no rights of appeal to the Secretary of State against planning decisions. Disappointed applicants can appeal to the Secretary of State and can have the merits of the application reconsidered. The only remedy available to a disappointed third party is a challenge by way of judicial review in the High Court on a point of law. The sense of frustration and disempowerment this creates has not been helped by the increasing complexity of the planning process and the use of consultation to legitimise decisions that many perceive may already have been taken.
    - CMS Group

Legal Developments in Germany

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • LAG Düsseldorf: Dismissal with immediate effect valid in response to threat

    Anyone who seriously threatens their employer or superior should expect to be dismissed with immediate effect. This was confirmed by a ruling of the Landesarbeitsgericht (LAG) Düsseldorf [Regional Labour Court of Düsseldorf] from June 8, 2017 (Az.: 11 Sa 823/16).
  • Tax evasion: Only voluntary disclosure affords protection from severe penalties

    Anyone who has been caught for tax evasion should expect to be faced with severe penalties. Voluntary disclosure is the only way of returning to a state of normal tax affairs and avoiding penalties.
  • GSK Update: AIFM Marketing in Germany - The clock is ticking for U.S. and other non-EU fund managers

    Our GSK Update informs about the impact of recent German investment fund legislation (UCITS V Implementation Act) for AIF managers, who are not domiciled in the EU (“non-EU-AIFM”) and who seek to market AIF shares in Germany in accordance with applicable German investment fund law under the EU-AIFM Directive (2011/61/EU).
  • GSK expands Luxembourg presence with a new tax partner

    Opened at the beginning of March 2016, GSK Stockmann + Kollegen continues to expand its Luxembourg office. Mathilde Ostertag recently joined the Luxembourg team of Equity Partners Dr. Marcus Peter, Andreas Heinzmann and Dr. Philipp Mößner as Local Tax Partner.
  • EIA - Strengthening the role of the public

    Among other things, the recent amendment to the Environmental Impact Assessment Act has broadened the rights of (what is termed) the "affected public". The affected public consists primarily of various citizens' initiatives pursuing environmental or public-health purposes. It may for instance file an appeal against a negative decision at the screening stage (i.e., a decision according to which the given project does not require the issuance of an EIA report), and seek its annulment in court. The affected public has been granted a stronger voice also in subsequent procedures in which the fate of a building project is being decided: zoning proceedings and the proceedings on the issuance of a building permit. Taken together, these legislative changes may make it more difficult to implement projects which require an EIA report; in particular, the length of permission proceedings may be substantially extended.
  • New Top Level Domains – Noerr expert warns against trademark infringements

    On June 13, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) published the names of those who have applied for a new top level domain the ending of which may be geographic, such as "munich", industry identification such as "insurance" and even all trademark names and company descriptions such as "canon" and "adidas".
    - Noerr
  • No obligation to set up filtering systems in order to prevent copyright violations

    ECJ, decision of February 16th, 2012, ref. C-360/10 – SABAM
  • Further ECJ Ruling concerning NGO’s right of action under German environmental law

    For the second time within a short period of time, the non-governmental organisations right to challenge administrative decisions under German law is going to be subject to the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice (ECJ). In January 2012, the German Supreme Administrative Court (Bundesverwaltungsgericht) referred a case to the ECJ for a preliminary ruling concerning the NGO’s right of action.
  • Lessons in Cross-Border M & A Transactions

    The fundamental advice for international business transactions is obvious and easy to understand: different countries have different laws, business habits and cultures. These differences may range from minor nuances, such as lengthy French business lunches or unusual Spanish office hours, to significant legal roadblocks, such as strict European employment laws.
  • Priority rental rights in insolvency

    Parties to rental contracts for commercial premises often agree priority rental rights. In practice, this concept is used to cover a whole series of legal structures. These range from fixed options for the tenant to a promise made by the landlord as a business policy that if any additional premises become available, they will be offered to the tenant. In 2010 the Berlin Court of Appeal issued a ruling on such priority rental rights in insolvency; the decision has recently been published.