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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In Europe, Middle East and Africa, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for seven consecutive years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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Austria > Dispute resolution: arbitration and mediation > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings


Index of tables

  1. Dispute resolution: arbitration and mediation
  2. Leading individuals
  3. Next Generation Partners

Leading individuals

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Who Represents Who

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Dorda Rechtsanwalte GmbH's 'very strong and experienced' team is a respected player in the market, acting for clients in various corporate and commercial disputes including ICC arbitration proceedings. Much of its workload pertains to disputes arising from co-operation, distribution and trade agreements alongside post-M&A issues and frequently includes white-collar criminal defence matters. Florian Kremslehner jointly heads the team with Veit Öhlberger,  who has 'a very sharp and analytical mind' and routinely acts as an arbitrator, as does senior partner Christian Dorda. Counsel Gunnar Pickl is 'someone to watch'.

KNOETZL HAUGENEDER NETAL's 'deep expertise' spans several sectors but recently, the team has been particularly active in handling commercial and investment protection arbitration in the energy, construction and engineering sectors. Clients also benefit form the firm's strong white-collar criminal defence capabilities leading to regular mandates at this intersection, including asset tracing work. Emmanuel Kaufman and team head Florian Haugeneder acted for Casinos Austria International and Casinos Austria in a dispute over the revocation of an exclusive gaming license held by the client's subsidiary in Salta, Argentina; the revocation was based on alleged failure to comply with the regulatory framework in Salta. Patrizia Netal is another key member of the team, and Bettina Knoetzl and counsel Natascha Tunkel are the main contacts for mediation.

With a strong presence in the CEE and SEE regions and particular expertise in the energy, construction, infrastructure and telecoms sectors, Wolf Theiss Rechtsanwalte GmbH & CoKG regularly handles post-M&A, construction and commercial disputes alongside investment arbitration proceedings. The highly regarded Stefan Riegler, who joined the firm from Baker McKenzie • Diwok Hermann Petsche Rechtsanwälte LLP & Co KG in November 2017, heads the team which includes counsel Venus Valentina Wong. Rechtsanwälte GmbH is recognised by clients and peers alike for its wide-ranging arbitration expertise, which is frequently called upon in ICC, UNCITRAL and VIAC proceedings with team members acting as party counsel and arbitrators. The practice is particularly experienced in dealing with energy sector disputes, including commercial and investment arbitration, and is led by the highly regarded Gerold Zeiler. Other key individuals include Lisa Beisteiner and Alfred Siwy.

Acting in energy and construction sector disputes is a central pillar of Cerha Hempel's arbitration practice. Benedikt Spiegelfeld and Irene Welser are the main contacts and also act as arbitrators. Susanne Molitoris was appointed senior counsel in October 2017 and Bernhard Wychera made counsel in January 2018.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer's arbitration group has undergone an internal restructuring process following the move of former team head Moritz Keller to Clifford Chance in July 2018 and the departure of highly regarded Günther Horvath in February 2018 to become a member of the supervisory board at Porsche. The team is now jointly led by Frankfurt-based Boris Kasolowsky, litigator Thomas Kustor and public law expert Stephan Denk and predominately handles commercial, post-M&A, construction and energy sector disputes alongside investment treaty cases, acting on both the investor and state side. In recent work, the team acted for EVN in ICSID arbitration proceedings against Bulgaria pertaining to the Energy Charter and the Austria-Bulgaria bilateral investment treaty. 'Experienced' principal associate Eliane Fischer is also noted.

Baier Rechtsanwälte has a strong profile for arbitrator and arbitration counsel mandates and routinely acts in commercial, investment, construction and energy disputes, most notably in the SEE and CEE regions. In the construction sphere, Turkish desk head Gregor Grubhofer and Croatian and Russian desk head Marko Szucsich represented Austrian Rail Engineering in two disputes with a contractor pertaining to civil engineering services. Anton Baier is highly regarded.

Baker McKenzie • Diwok Hermann Petsche Rechtsanwälte LLP & Co KG has a strong regional focus on SEE and is well versed in handling post-M&A, investor-state and banking disputes. Filip Boras, who jointly heads the team with Alexander Petsche after former team head Stefan Riegler moved to Wolf Theiss Rechtsanwalte GmbH & CoKG in November 2017, acts for the Austrian investor Georg Gavrilovic and the eponymous Croatian meat processing group in an ICSID proceeding against the Republic of Croatia pertaining to the Austria-Croatia bilateral investment treaty.

Binder Grösswang's team has strong arbitrator and arbitration counsel capabilities, acting in commercial and insurance coverage disputes with wide-ranging industry knowledge including energy, manufacturing, transport, banking and finance as well as construction and engineering. Practice head Michael Kutschera and 'exceptionally bright legal mind and tireless representative' Christian Klausegger are the main contacts; both also act as arbitrators.

Recognised for its 'longstanding expertise', arbitration boutique Konrad & Partners 'analyses every case carefully' and has a strong focus on commercial and investment arbitration, with team members acting as counsel and arbitrators, and is led by Christian Konrad and 'very forceful advocate' Philipp Peters. Its recent caseload includes disputes in the industrial engineering, insurance and healthcare sectors but the team is also experienced in handling other work. In 2018, special counsel Manfred Heider joined from VIAC and Franziska Mensdorff-Pouilly and Heidrun Halbartschlager were appointed counsel.

Praised for its 'ability to think internationally', Schoenherr (Schönherr Rechtsanwälte) routinely acts for clients in investment arbitration proceedings involving governmental entities throughout the CEE region; recently, team head and 'eminent practitioner' Christoph Lindinger assisted GreenWorx with ICSID arbitral proceedings against the Republic of Serbia pertaining to the alleged breach of investment-related assurances and guarantees. Other work includes commercial disputes across various industries. 'Extremely clever' counsel and 'strong communicator' Leon Kopecký and Maximilian Raschhofer, who was promoted to counsel in February 2018, are other names to note. Mediation expert Anne-Karin Grill joined Vavrovsky Heine Marth Rechtsanwälte in June 2018.

Vavrovsky Heine Marth Rechtsanwälte focuses on commercial arbitration and mediation; the latter discipline was significantly bolstered by the arrival of mediation expert Anne-Karin Grill from Schoenherr (Schönherr Rechtsanwälte) in June 2018. She jointly heads the practice with Nikolaus Vavrovsky, who regularly sits as an arbitrator. Other key areas of expertise include investor-state and shareholder disputes.

CMS' team is jointly headed by Johannes Reich-Rohrwig and Daniela Karollus-Bruner and is experienced in representing clients in post-M&A, commercial and investor-state proceedings spanning various industries including energy, banking, construction and engineering.

At Graf & Pitkowitz, the team is well versed in handling financial, commercial, corporate and energy disputes alongside the enforcement of arbitral awards. The practice is led by Nikolaus Pitkowitz, who routinely acts as an arbitrator; he also deals with private client work and has particular expertise in acting for China-based clients in contentious matters linked to Austria.

At Hauser Partners Rechtsanwälte GmbH, Wulf Gordian Hauser is the main contact; he acts as sole arbitrator, chairman of arbitral tribunals and arbitration counsel in various commercial arbitration proceedings, including those involving fraud claims. The 'experienced' Peter Blaschke is another key individual.

Martin Platte at Mag. Martin Platte, LL.M. (London) Rechtsanwalt is dedicated to commercial arbitration, most notably post-M&A, shareholder and trade-related disputes and also acts as an arbitrator.

Saxinger, Chalupsky & Partners (SCWP Schindhelm) has strong regional presence in Upper Austria and particular expertise in commercial disputes, while its clients also benefit from the team's experience in China-related disputes. Recently, the team successfully represented a Czech company in VIAC proceedings against a major Chinese state-owned entity pertaining to payment claims. Practice head Markus Fellner acts for SGS Industrial Services in cross-border ICC arbitration proceedings against a Chilean subsidiary of Andritz concerning outstanding payment obligations.

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Press releases

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Legal Developments in Austria

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

    Good things come to those who wait? Finally, the main implementing regulation for the Austrian Law on Network and Information System Security ( Netz- und Informationssystemsicherheitsgesetz , " NISG ") was published last week. It serves primarily to define which companies are actually affected by the NISG. Now it is getting serious for the operators of " essential services ". What does that mean?
    - Dorda

    Black Friday is unquestionable one of the most profitable and busiest days of the year for retail, particularly online. Worldwide almost all online store do offer sales or special promotions on Black Friday or Cyber Monday. Already after this practice has established online, a trademark for " BLACK FRIDAY " was registered in Germany back in 2013. In 2016 a Chinese company acquired the trademark and then filed in 2017 for its extension to Austria. Based on the registered trademark, it granted exclusive rights to an Austrian company, which licensed usage rights to various partner stores against remuneration. Further, an exclusive " Black Friday-Cooperation Program " was established. Non-partners who used the event name or trademark were prosecuted and requested to either pay a license fee or refrain from running Black Friday promotions. Some followed the request and entered into license agreements. Some, however, did challenge the validity of the trademark. Finally, respective proceedings to check the actual protection of the trademark were initiated. Austrian courts now held that the trademark " BLACK FRIDAY " is not protected in Austria .
    - Dorda

    On 5th December 2018, the Austrian data protection authority ( Datenschutzbehörde , "DSB") issued a decision (DSB-D123.270/0009-DSB/2018) on data subject's right to data deletion according to Art 17 GDPR. In a nutshell, the DSB accepted consistent anonymisation as a valid alternative to physical and technical deletion. Beside the clear statement that anonymous data is not subject to the GDPR, the DSB provided detailed information on (technical) requirements of anonymisation methods:
    - Dorda
  • Consent or pay – a valid scheme under the GDPR?

    Media companies throughout Europe struggle with a difficult economic environment: Shrinking sales figures for print products, the digitalisation and consumer demand force publishers to offer their content also on the internet. However, generating money for online publications is not quite easy as – at least in Austria – online subscription against renumeration has not been well accepted by customers. This partially has its root in the lack of suitable micropayment means in the past and users thus getting acquainted to online information being offered for free. Thus, publishers have instead focused on financing their platforms by online marketing activities such as placement of banners. Nowadays such digital advertisement is usually targeted to the specific user. For this purpose, cookies are stored on the user's computer upon his first visit of the website, which then collect data about his location, technical equipment used and online behaviour. This finally allows to display specific, user targeted advertisements. However, such cookies may cause issues with applicable consent requirements under the telecommunication and data protection regulations:
    - Dorda
  • fwp expands know-how thanks to new junior partner

    Vienna, March 2019. Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner GmbH (fwp) adds valuable competence and expertise to the team by welcoming Pavel Bachleda in its midst as a new attorney-at-law and junior partner.
  • fwp helps find a new mega arena location

    fwp helps find a new mega arena location

    Processing operations subject to the requirement of a data protection impact assessment.
    - Dorda
  • Rien ne va plus!

    - Dorda
  • DORDA advises on the acquisition of Austrian office properties Denk Drei

    Stefan Artner , Partner and Head of the Real Estate Practice Group, and real estate attorney Klaus Pfeiffer of DORDA advised Austrian Real Estate Development GmbH ( ARE , a subsidiary of Bundesimmobilien-Gesellschaft, the Austrian privatization agency) on the acquisition of the Denk Drei office properties from IC Development . The successful closing of the forward purchase transaction took place on April 30, 2018. The parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price.
    - Dorda
  • Austrian "White List"

    Exceptions from the OBLIGATION TO CARRY OUT A data protection impact assessment
    - Dorda

Press Releases in Austria

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to
  • fwp extends its expertise by appointing a new junior partner from its own ranks

    Vienna, September 2018. Motivated and energetic - this is how the new junior partner of Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner (fwp) presents himself. One of Austria’s leading law firms acclaims Clemens Gabriel’s new status as attorney-at-law registered since 19 September 2018.
  • fwp strengthens areas of competence by appointing a new junior partner from its own ranks.

    Vienna, September 2018. Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner (fwp) adds valuable competence and expertise to the team by promoting Michael Froner to junior partner.
  • Slovakia: Schoenherr advises AlbĂ©a on the acquisition of Scandolara Slovakia

    Schoenherr Bratislava has advised the Albéa group ("Albéa") on the acquisition of 100 % of the shares in SCANDOLARA TUB-EST, s.r.o. ("Scandolara"), a Slovak subsidiary of the Italian Scandolara Group, which produces laminate tubes. read more...
  • Schoenherr assists Republic of Austria in offer to HETA-creditors

    On Friday, 2 September 2016, the Austrian Finance Minister has given the green light to finance a public offer by Kärntner Ausgleichszahlungs-Fonds (KAF) to HETA creditors pursuant to § 2a of the Austrian Financial Market Stability Act. The offer will implement the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) concluded in May 2016 between the Austrian Minister of Finance and a significant number of creditors of debt instruments issued by HETA ASSET RESOLUTION AG (HETA) that are subject to a regional law deficiency guarantee. The offer will be published by KAF on Tuesday, 6 September 2016.  read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises banking consortium on issuance of EUR 500 million mortgage covered bond

    Schoenherr advised an international banking consortium comprising Commerzbank Ak-tiengesellschaft (technical lead), Barclays Bank plc, Crédit Agricole CIB and CaixaBank SA as Joint Lead Managers on the successful issuance of a EUR 500 million fixed-rate mortgage covered bond ( Pfandbrief ) by Vienna-based Erste Group Bank AG (closing date: 9 September 2015). The bond was placed with institutional investors and listed on the Second Regulated Market of the Vienna Stock Exchange.  read more...
  • Austria: JUVE confirms Schoenherr's leading role in Austrian legal market and among corporate/M&A pr

    JUVE, the premier German-language legal business publication, ranks Schoenherr as the  leading law firm in Austria  and recognises the firm's Corporate/M&A practice for being at the very  apex of the country's transactional practitioners . In the newly-released 2015 edition of its annual 150-page handbook on corporate law firms in Austria, JUVE identifies Schoenherr as having generated the highest revenues among the country’s 15 largest law firms, thanks not least to Schoenherr's advisory role in a large selection of the headline transactions and restructurings during 2014/15.  read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises Allianz Capital Partners on its first acquisition of wind parks in Austr

    Schoenherr advised Allianz Capital Partners (ACP) on its acquisition of four wind parks in the Austrian state of Lower Austria from ImWind, one of the country’s largest wind farm operators, with a portfolio of 320 MW in operation. read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises UNION Investment on prominent real estate transactions in Vienna

    Schoenherr has advised UNION Investment Real Estate GmbH, one of Europe's leading property investment management companies, on several prominent real estate acquisitions that the Hamburg-based group has made in Vienna. In addition to space2move, Schoenherr has also advised UNION Investment. read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises Cimpress on its acquisition of Austria's

    Schoenherr advised Cimpress N.V., a world leader in mass customization, on its acquisition of, one of the leading web-to-print businesses in Austria. The transaction, which was announced on 18 March 2015, closed on 17 April 2015 following the successful achievement of various closing conditions including Austrian antitrust clearance. The acquisition supports Cimpress’ strategy of building a software-enabled operational platform that aggregates and optimizes the supply chain and production of mass customized products such as signage, printing, apparel and promotional products. read more...
  • CEE: Schoenherr named Leading Law Firm in South East Europe by Chambers

    Schoenherr has been recognized as " South East Europe Law Firm of the Year " (2015) by the renowned legal publisher Chambers and Partners . Schoenherr lawyers Monica Cojocaru (partner; Bucharest), Miloš Laković (partner, Moravčević, Vojnović & partneri OAD in cooperation with Schoenherr; Belgrade) and Marko Prušnik (partner; Ljubljana) accepted the award on behalf of the firm at the Chambers Europe Awards event held this past Friday evening at Amsterdam’s Hotel Okura. read more...