Next Generation Partners

Rising Stars

Firms To Watch: Maritime and shipping

UPWIND Legal comprehensively advises yacht sector clients on all relevant matters, including acquisitions and sales as well as contentious issues.

Maritime and shipping in Germany

Arnecke Sibeth Dabelstein

Arnecke Sibeth Dabelstein offers comprehensive advice to clients in the maritime industry, including transactions, financing, marine insurance and yacht-related issues. The team also covers interfacing matters such as public, public procurement and antitrust law. German and international shipping companies, shipyards, insurers and the offshore industry regularly instruct the group on day-to-day business operations as well as contentious issues. Practice head Jan Dreyer focuses on contract drafting in connection with shipbuilding, ship financing and supply, he jointly leads the team with Olaf Hartenstein, who is experienced in international commercial, maritime and inland waterway transport law. Marine insurance law matters are a key strength of Dieter Schwampe, while Jan Tjarko Eichhorn covers corporate law matters in the maritime economy. Jörg Noltin specialises in maritime employment law and made partner in January 2022.

Practice head(s):

Jan Dreyer; Olaf Hartenstein


Other key lawyers:

Dieter Schwampe; Marco Remiorz; Jan Tjarko Eichhorn; Jörg Noltin


Clyde & Co LLP

Integrated into the firm's global network, the German team at Clyde & Co LLP offers in-depth expertise in the maritime industry. The team comprehensively covers German as well as English law regarding the entire maritime value chain. Offshore wind energy, the oil and gas industry as well as yacht-related issues are among the core topics of the practice group, in addition to commercial and maritime trade law. Hamburg-based practice head Eckehard Volz is experienced in litigation, complex accidents, marine insurance matters as well as shipbuilding and shipyards and also represents clients in contentious proceedings before courts and arbitration tribunals. Daniel Jones impresses with English law expertise pertaining to shipbuilding contracts, charter parties and bills of lading, while Volker Lücke specialises in the yacht sector. Stefan Ullrich handles insurance law issues, which include yacht and superyacht insurance as well as large-scale international damages. Senior associate Jakob Haas is experienced in contentious matters regarding dry and wet maritime law.

Practice head(s):

Eckehard Volz


Testimonials

‘The team takes the interests of the clients seriously and understands problems very quickly.’

‘Very practical and solution-oriented work. Young and flexible team.’

‘Volker Lücke and Stefan Ullrich are experts in maritime commercial law. Both have extensive legal, but above all practical experience in maritime and insurance law, which makes their recommendations much more effective.’

FLEET HAMBURG

FLEET HAMBURG is among the top addresses for German and international companies in the maritime sector. The firm's expertise encompasses German and English law and covers contentious and non-contentious matters. Co-head Arthur Steinmann advises parties such as owners, charterers and insurers on the entire spectrum of maritime law. Dharshini Bandara is particularly well versed in English law in the dry and wet shipping area and jointly heads the team with Steinmann. Klaus Kostka advises on insurance law, while Eva Bodenbach assists with acquisitions and sales as well as financing, shipbuilding and management contracts. Markus Eichhorst is well versed in contentious proceedings before courts and arbitral tribunals, while clients from the cruise industry regularly instruct Tobias Nesemann on maritime and tourism law.

Testimonials

‘An excellently coordinated team with which all cases can be processed continuously, even if different people are involved.’

‘Very customer-oriented, individual, precise and goal-oriented.’

‘Not only legal positions are taken into account, but also technical knowledge is implemented.’

‘The firm has extensive knowledge of marine insurance under both English and German law. Mandates are processed with great commitment.’

‘Dharshini Bandara and Markus Eichhorst are very good at bringing together aspects of English and German law.’

‘Very fast and well-founded, also thinking commercially.’

LEBUHN & PUCHTA

LEBUHN & PUCHTA impresses with comprehensive advice on maritime law, ranging from advice on corporate law to maritime plant construction and damages. The team has further capacities in interfacing matters, such as maritime employment and insurance law, as well as a designated desk for Scandinavian clients. Recent topics include pandemic and sanctions-related issues, including contract adjustments and the early termination of charters. Practice head Ulrich Stahl covers all aspects of maritime law; he jointly leads the Hamburg-based team with Johannes Trost, who advises on maritime and inland waterway transport law as well as offshore projects and maritime plant construction. Matthias Wittschen acts at the interface to corporate law, while maritime trade and transport law are among Sabine Rittmeister's specialisations. Clients regularly instruct Sarah Gahlen and Edward Maguin on ship transactions and ship financing, with the former also having experience in marine insurance law.

Practice head(s):

Ulrich Stahl; Johannes Trost


Other key lawyers:

Matthias Wittschen; Sarah Gahlen; Edward Maguin; Sabine Rittmeister; Dieter Armbrust


Testimonials

‘Outstanding legal expertise in the field of maritime transport law combined with enormous practical relevance.’

‘The team is characterized by a high level of professional competence, has broad knowledge of the market and has a great deal of experience, especially in shipping law.’

‘The members of the team are well networked with each other and in an international context and can always achieve results and solutions in consulting practice that fit their own pragmatic management.’

Key clients

E.R. Capital Holding


Aibel AS


Blue Star Group


wpd


Active Shipping


Bright Shipping


NORDCAPITAL-Gruppe


Ostfriesische Volksbank eG


Work highlights


  • Comprehensive advice to cargo parties on their claims from fire damage and general average on board a roll-on-roll-off ferry with damage to ship and cargo.

  • Advising a Chinese liner shipping company on the establishment of a German joint venture.

  • Support for a consortium of shipyards in the tender for a construction contract in the offshore wind sector.

Ehlermann Rindfleisch Gadow (ERG)

Ehlermann Rindfleisch Gadow (ERG) comprehensively advises the maritime sector with a sizeable team on all relevant areas. This includes transactional support, such as ship financing, acquisitions and sales as well as shipbuilding, while also covering operational and regulatory matters and litigation. The team's expertise encompasses German and English law, Marshall Islands law as well as Greek and Liberian law. Hendrik Brauns, Hauke Rittscher and Carolin Schmeding are experienced in insolvency issues and maritime financing, while Klaus Dimigen handles restructuring and long-term ship financing matters; he frequently advises Turkish shipping companies and ship financing banks. Structured maritime finance, including fleet and container finance, is among Stefan Fleisch's key areas.

Testimonials

‘ERG understands that ship financing requires a pragmatic approach.’

‘ERG is exceptional in its ship finance practice, both under German and English law.’

‘The ERG team is as pragmatic as possible and as dogmatic as necessary. The lawyers think proactively and are always up to date.’

Watson Farley & Williams LLP

Watson Farley & Williams LLP is particularly well versed in ship financing, where clients also benefit from the firm's global footprint in connection with cross-border matters. The team advises on matters in the context of flag flying, marine insurance and public law. Other core competencies include corporate law, including joint ventures and M&A transactions, advising maritime companies on tax law as well as interdisciplinary areas such as ESG and sustainability. Christian Finnern leads the team and primarily advises on corporate law. Financing and leasing transactions as well as restructuring are part of Clemens Hillmer 's expertise.

Practice head(s):

Christian Finnern


Other key lawyers:

Clemens Hillmer


Testimonials

‘Proactive and technically very competent – even under great time pressure.’

‘Watson Farley & Williams is a law firm that is firmly anchored in ship financing with a high level of specialist knowledge in this area, which is committed to serving its clients.’

‘Clemens Hillmer is very committed.’

‘Christian Finnern is very solution-oriented and strong in negotiations.’

‘The WFW team has a broad yet deep knowledge of the maritime sector, both individually and as a whole. The advice is always solution-oriented – in other words, points out problems, but at the same time provides solutions.’

‘Christian Finnern offers comprehensive M&A advice in the maritime sector and is well connected.’

‘The cooperation takes place on an equal footing and we work together on the topics.’

‘Christian Finnern is an absolute professional, serious, reliable, good team leader with a strong network and a high level of shipping expertise.’

Key clients

Joh. Berenberg, Gossler & Co. KG


Hamburg Commercial Bank (HCOB)


Portfoliomanagement


JAML


Warburg Bank


Uni Credit


Deutsche Bank


MPC Capital Group


MPC Container Ships ASA


Hurtigruten Group


Work highlights


  • Advising Hamburg Commercial Bank (HCOB) on a new $180 million banking facility provided to an intermediate holding company of MPC Container Ships ASA (MPCC).

  • Advising portfoliomanagement, the clearing house of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg and the State of Schleswig-Holstein, on the due diligence for the sale of a number of ships forming part of their remaining ship loan portfolio to a consortium of bidders consisting of Bank of America and Davidson Kempner Capital Management L.P.

  • Advised Norwegian company MPC Container Ships ASA (MPCC) on a $144.4 million contract to build two 5,500 tonne green container ships at South Korean shipyard HJ Shipbuilding and Construction.

Ahlers & Vogel

With offices in Hamburg and Leer, Ahlers & Vogel advises shipyards, shipping companies, ship brokers and insurance companies on various maritime matters, with a focus on shipbuilding, claims settlement and mega yachts as well as ship financing and S&P transactions. Philipp Landers's expertise includes marine insurance law, while Martin Rosenzweig primarily advises on shipbuilding and ship financing. Wilm Steinröver is well versed in matters pertaining to maritime accidents and Jan-Erik Pötschke advises ship managers, shipyards, shipowners and P&I clubs in particular on matters pertaining to maritime law.

Other key lawyers:

Philipp Landers; Wilm Steingröver; Martin Rosenzweig; Jan-Erik Pötschke


Luther Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH

Luther Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH offers a wide array of services in the maritime sector, including contractual disputes related to shipbuilding, insolvency law and ship transactions. Thanks to the firm’s strength in public law, clients also benefit from synergies with environmental law and planning issues. A trio heads the practice: Benjamin Hub advises clients on corporate and insolvency law, Florian Schulz accompanies transactions, joint ventures and restructuring and Daniel Fehling has in-depth knowledge of merchant ships and river cruise ships. In June 2022, the team welcomed Jette Gustafsson (previously at Blaum Dettmers Rabstein ), who advises on maritime trade law as well as on digitisation matters in the shipping sector.

Other key lawyers:

Jette Gustafsson; Lars Frohne


Testimonials

‘Luther’s team is first and foremost very competent and solution-oriented.’

‘We really appreciate the trusting cooperation that we have been leading successfully for several years now.’

‘Benjamin Hub: In addition to his enormously high level of professional competence, his social skills and negotiating skills are equally excellent.’

Key clients

Siem Europe S.a r.l.


Thomas Miller Holding Ltd.


Obotritia Capital KGaA


Hansa Hamburg Shipping International GmbH & Co KG


Al Seer Marine Supplies & Equipment Company P.J.S.C.


ERMA FIRST ESK Engineering Solutions S.A.


Work highlights


  • Advising Al Seer Marine Supplies & Equipment Company in connection with the planned acquisition of Lloyd Werft Bremerhaven GmbH.

  • Advising ERMA FIRST ESK Engineering Solutions S.A. on the takeover of RWO GmbH, a German specialist in seawater treatment, in a bidding process.

  • Advising Siem Europe S.a.r.l. on the insolvency of Flensburger Schiffbaugesellschaft.

REMÉ Rechtsanwälte

Shipping and transport law boutique REMÉ Rechtsanwälte is particularly active at the interface between maritime and insurance law, thus advising insurance companies, underwriters and shipping industry clients. Practice head Ingo Gercke offers in-depth experience in shipping law disputes and complex insurance disputes and regularly acts as an arbitrator. Marine hull insurers frequently instruct Jobst Von Werder, while Christoph Singer primarily advises the public sector. Andreas Zink made partner in January 2022 and is experienced in dispute resolution, contract drafting and public law, among others.

Practice head(s):

Ingo Gercke


Key clients

AIG Europe SA


Zurich Insurance plc


Dachser SE


Norton Rose Fulbright

Norton Rose Fulbright‘s maritime practice focuses on advising banks, shipowners, charterers and P&I clubs on ship financing, although the team is also experienced in operational, regulatory and employment law matters as well as in supporting infrastructure projects. Thanks to the firm’s global network, international matters are seamlessly covered. Practice head Timo Noftz is particularly well versed in asset and project financing.

Practice head(s):

Timo Noftz


Testimonials

‘Pragmatic approaches, always up to date and extremely client-friendly.’

‘They know how to understand the client’s business in order to achieve the best possible result.’

‘Timo Noftz and his team have extensive knowledge in insolvency and restructuring, but what sets them apart is their ability to deliver this in an easily digestible way for non-lawyers, combined with the fact that they are up to date with curren market developments.’

Key clients

Stena


KfW IPEX-Bank


Viking River Cruises


Citi


Carnival


Work highlights


  • Advising a private equity fund and a German bank in connection with the restructuring of a distressed ship financing company.

  • Advising a private equity investor in connection with the purchase of a large NPL ship loan portfolio from Hamburg Commercial Bank and Cerberus.