Covering the full spectrum of work in the life science and healthcare sectors, Baker McKenzie's Buenos Aires office began to develop a focused life sciences practice back in 2006, adopting an industry-centric approach as Argentina began to emerge as a regional hub with the country's creation of a Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovative Production (MSTI). Today the core practice group houses expertise in regulatory matters, consumer safety, competition, intellectual property data protect ion, commercial and contractual issues, compliance and anti-corruption, M&A and corporate transactions, dispute resolution and tax. Global Chair of the firm's Healthcare & Life Sciences Group, practice head Vanina Caniza is 'clear, to the point, expeditive and highly knowledgeable'; many client's 'counsel of choice', her practices centres on the pharmaceutical, biotech and medical device segments, primarily acting for major multinational, Latin American and Argentine clients. Other notable figures in the local team include: young labour and public law practitioners Felipe Graham and Santiago Maqueda, who made partner in December 2020 and July 2021, respectively; and corporate, M&A and compliance-focused senior associate Rocío Rojas Iglesias, all of whom have a particular focus on the life sciences and healthcare sector.
Life sciences and healthcare in Argentina
‘When I think of legal services for the healthcare industry in Latin America I can’t recommend Vanina Caniza strongly enough. I have worked with her for at least 12 years in a variety of companies including a well-established healthcare company, a PE funded venture focused on inbound pharmaceutical licenses (which later IPO’ed), and a digital health start up. Vanina has a great combination of both industry knowledge and client-service focus which is not easy to find. She is passionate in her work and leads a fantastic team. She is my “counsel of choice” not only in Argentina, but also in Latin America overall.‘
‘On Vanina’s team, I would mention Rocio Rojas Iglesias for contracts and regulatory matters and Martin Roth for data privacy issues which, as you know, are critical for the healthcare industry.‘
‘Vanina is an excellent partner to whom we entrust complex pharma compliance and also legal assessments. She is clear, to the point, expeditive and highly knowledgeable of latest compliance trends and of the fundamentals on how to deal with the issues from a practical point of view. Moreover, she is the kind of professional with whom you are invited to be open and to rely on her experience from the very beginning of the conversation. It is a pleasure to work with her and the team.’
‘In a highly and increasingly complex regulated environment such as the one currently ruling in Argentina, Baker Mckenzie provides us with sound legal advice for our decision-making process to flow naturally and efficiently, while minimising the risks of falling out of compliance. Baker McKenzie counts on a talented and experienced team in all areas of legal practice and is fully responsible and committed to customer results.‘
‘Ms. Vanina Caniza is fundamental to such results, proactively monitoring the legal environment and our company business dynamics, so as to fully support our mission to better serve our patients. Furthermore, she usually achieves these excellent results by committing personally on the many issues we handle without time limits, with proactive customer service and -why not- an always positive attitude that over the years has built a relationship of mutual trust and professional respect.‘
Bausch & Lomb
Mathys / Bettlach
MSD Argentina (Merck)
New York University
Procter & Gamble
- Assisted WSA with a review of certain transactions involving a third party that represented a local affiliate in its dealings with a local government instrumentality; as well as with a review of contractual relationships to assess compliance with local anticorruption legislation.
- Defence of Bausch & Lomb against an injunction requiring cease of use, as well as assistance regarding a number of compliance-related matters.
- Advised Megapharma on the acquisitions of Raymos and Max Vision in the eve-care segment, as well as that of pharmaceuticals company, Laboratorios Poen.
Marval O’Farrell Mairal has ‘spectacular know-how that makes complex issues become simple', making it 'a real pleasure to work with them’. The team covers contentious, regulatory and transactional issues related to the lifes ciences sector, combining this experience with an ‘awareness of what is happening in the pharmaceutical industry’. Particular strengths include the cosmetics and food sectors, as well as multijurisdictional work throughout the chain of life science and healthcare provision. Martin Mosteirin leads the practice and provides a ‘good balance between knowledge of the regulations that apply to the pharmaceutical industry as well as business practices’. However -partially due to the impact of the pandemic- the practice group lost senior associate Tomás Ibarzabal and experienced junior Matias Koch (who moved in house at Sanofi and GSK in March and November 2020, respectively). In the wake of their departure, young associate Camila Leone provides key support; she has experience in bio-pharmaceuticals, healthcare, medical devices, dental products, medicinal cannabis and agribusiness.
‘Implementation of technological innovations in the delivery of trainings, talks of interest and other training tools’.
‘Few lawyers have as much experience in this area of law as Martin Mosteirin, and that becomes a key point when it comes to having their services. This knowledge allows Martin to respond quickly and to customer inquiries’.
‘Marval is constantly innovating when it comes to technology, constantly investing in new technologies and tools’.
‘Marval and its lifesciences partner has a deep knowledge and understanding of the pharmaceutical market and the nuances of the market niches’.
‘The part of the lifesciences practice is so involved in the market that they knew about quality control laboratories for sale, what is not usual for law firms to do, but turned out to be extremely helpful’.
‘Martin Mosteirin is the most knowledgable attorney in pharma related law in Argentina’
‘Marval’s team, with the leadership of Martin Mosteirin have demonstrated proficiency and a deep knowledge in maters related with Pharmaceutical Industry in Argentina (including manufacturing, regulatory, pharmacovigilance, clinical trials, among many others)’.
‘A good balance between knowledge of the regulations that apply to the pharmaceutical industry as well as business practices’.
‘Spectacular know-how that make complex issues become simple and it is a real pleasure to work with’.
‘Martin Mosteirin is awareness of what is happening in the pharmaceutical industry’.
Sumitomo Chemical Company
- Assisted Pfizer with the negotiations and execution of the clinical trial agreement for covid-19 vaccine candidate in collaboration with BioNTech for starting phase III at the Hospital General de Agudos Dr. Cosme Argerich site, Argentina.
- Represented Takeda Pharma S.A. in the spin-off of Hepatalgina business unit to Laboratorio Elea-Phoenix S.A., as part of a global strategy after Takeda and Shire Human Therapies’ merger.
- Represented Sumitomo Chemical Company in the acquisition of Nufarm’s agrochemical business in South America.
The well-established life sciences and healthcare practice at Beccar Varela brings together the firm's full-service capabilities, with niche expertise in novel and emerging areas. Particular strengths that distinguish the group include its deep grasp of the complex field of orphan drugs/products and the "exception access regime" for medicines, as well as its expertise in the nascent medicinal-cannabis sector in Argentina. Health-regulatory specialist, senior associate Ana Andrés is primarily dedicated to the life sciences and healthcare sector, where she advises local and international clients on regulatory, corporate and litigation matters. She co-leads the practice with advisory partner Emilio Vogelius, a senior figure with a long trajectory of corporate advice to the pharmaceutical industry.
Emilio Nicolás Federico Vogelius; Ana Andrés
‘I really enjoy working with Ana Andres. She is very objective, understands the needs of the business and presents effective solutions. In addition to being very kind and quick.‘
‘Full service Argentine law firm with good reputation and delivery’.
‘I very much like to work with Ana Andrés (health regulatory), Thomás Allende and Felipe Videla (both corporate and M&A). They provide timely advice at a cost efficient fee arrangement’.
Allergan Productos Farmacéuticos
Cámara Argentina de Especialidades Medicinales (CAEMe)
- Advised and assisted Sanofi on the transfer of assets related to certain product portfolio to Laboratorios Elea Phoenix and to Laboratorio Lepetit; the mandate involving the negotiation, drafting and review of the Asset Transfer Agreement as well as all ancillary agreements necessary to implement the transaction and to cover the transitional period.
- Advising the local subsidiaries of various international companies on the modfication of their local business structures in order to permit their full registration as pharmaceutical companies in Argentina.
From the ‘generic contractual to regulatory aspects’ Bruchou, Fernández Madero & Lombardi is ‘knowledgeable about the life sciences industry’, as well as being ‘good partners for cross-border M&A deals in this industry’. The practice group’s experience includes the key areas of commercial agreements, joint ventures and transactions, the IP-aspect (including trade marks and patents), antitrust considerations, public procurement, litigation, regulatory matters, compliance and data protection. Corporate partner Estanislao Olmos regularly leads on healthcare and life science-related M&As, distribution arrangements and relevant commercial agreements, involving both public and private entities. He co-leads the team with IP specialist Dámaso Pardo who has advised primarily pharma, biotech and medical device companies on patent prosecution, health registrations, general corporate matters and regulatory issues. Other figures who play a role in the practice include corporate/M&A and antitrust-focused partner Gabriel H Lozano, who was formerly in house at Syngenta for a number of years; and regulatory and administrative senior associate Juan Antonio Zocca.
Estanislao Olmos; Dámaso Pardo
‘The team is knowledgeable about the life sciences industry and were good partners for cross-border M&A deals in this industry. They were also fast and pretty much available at all times – which is key when you need to coordinate several jurisdictions in a cross-border deal’.
‘Gabriel Horácio Lozano is a hands-on partner, great to work with. Always available leading the team to deliver quality and in time work product’.
‘They have been advising us on domestic and international business contracts for over 10 years. He also accompanied us in the development of our corporate legal strategy and defense in contractual conflicts with domestic public bodies’.
‘They know all the particularities of our business from the generic contractual to regulatory aspects. This continuity throughout the years confirms the assertiveness of the advice and gives us the necessary confidence when negotiating our agreements in the countries that we distribute’.
‘I highlight the importance of having a team of professionals with very diverse skills and specialties, which makes them very complete in the advice offered’.
‘Competent and solid in their specialty, team spirit, warmth and cordiality in the interaction and immediate availability for the treatment and resolution of the topics discussed’.
‘I especially highlight Estanislao Olmos and Ignacio Minorini Lima’.
Laboratorio Elea Phoenix
- Assisted Laboratorio Elea Phoenix with the acquisition of the Hepatalgina-business unit (including its industrial plant) from pharmaceutical company, Takeda.
- Regular advice to mechanical ventilator manufacturer Tecme on both local and international distribution matters, customs and other day-to-day affairs; as well as assistance during the Covid-19 pandemic with Argentine government orders and restrictions, as well as supply-chain diffculties during periods of lockdown.
- Assisted Coty Argentina and Coty Incorproated with the reorganisation of certain assets -including the commercialisation rights over the Wella Professional and Opi brands to Wella Argentina- sold to NewCo, a subsidiary of Coty’s strategic partner, KKR; the transaction closed simultaneously in more than twenty jurisdictions, with KKR owning 60% of the standalone Wella entity, while Coty retains the remaining 40%.
The multidisciplinary practice at Alfaro-Abogados has a range of experience in healthcare, pharmaceutical, veterinary, agriculture, fisheries and food industries issues. Advice in the sector ranges from regulatory, M&A, marketing and administrative matters, to data protection, tax and patent prosecution work. The team also handles contentious mandates. The group is co-led by administrative law expert Carlos Alfaro; Sebastián Rodrigo, who focuses on transactional and regulatory issues; and M&A specialist Pedro Mazer.
Carlos Alfaro; Sebastián Rodrigo; Pedro Mazer
Comercializadora Terumo Chile
- Aadvised Salentein Argentina on corporate, regulatory, employment, advertising, litigation and contractual matters.
- Aadvised Labyes on corporate, regulatory, advertising and contractual matters.
- Advised Ajinomoto on corporate, regulatory, labour and data protection matters.