Leading firms in North Macedonia

Debarliev, Dameski & Kelesoska Attorneys at Law

The broad practice at Debarliev, Dameski & Kelesoska Attorneys at Law advises on banking and finance, corporate and M&A, antitrust, IP and IT, and energy and environmental law matters; its expertise also spans tax, infrastructure and projects, real estate and construction, employment, and dispute resolution. Ivan Debarliev leads the large clients (outsourcing) department, and is widely respected for commercial disputes and arbitration, M&A and electronic communications matters. Dragan Dameski and Emilija Kelesoska Sholjakovska lead the foreign investments and domestic clients departments, respectively.

Practice head(s):

Ivan Debarliev; Dragan Dameski; Emilija Kelesoska Sholjakovska

Polenak Law Firm

Polenak Law Firm regularly handles matters for a range of renowned domestic and multinational corporate clients in the fields of telecoms, automotive, energy, heavy industry, insurance and real estate development. The team is particularly well-regarded for its dispute resolution capabilities, acting in complex civil and commercial disputes, bankruptcy and criminal litigation procedures and arbitration within the country’s Economic Chamber. Recent highlights include various class actions, contractual disputes and damages claims for various commercial entities. Aleksandar Dimic is a litigation expert and member of the Macedonian and International Bar Associations. Managing partner Kristijan Polenak heads the firm's banking and finance department, alongside corporate team head Tatjana Shishkovska, while Metodija Velkov handles competition, regulatory and compliance mandates.

Practice head(s):

Aleksandar Dimic

Other key lawyers:

Kristijan Polenak; Tatjana Shishkovska; Metodija Velkov

Testimonials

‘Aleksandar Dimic offers excellent customer service. He responds promptly to instructions, happily meets what seems like impossibly short time frames and the advice he provides is not solely focused on the black letter of the law but practical issues. I would not hesitate to recommend him or Polenak for matters in North Macedonia.’ 

Apostolska, Aleksandrovski & Partners

Apostolska, Aleksandrovski & Partners has notable experience in the automotive, pharmaceutical, construction, energy, software, IT, and high-tech startup sectors. As a member of various SEE region legal networks - including SELA and Mertias - and a frequent local partner for major multinational law firms, the team is well placed to advise foreign clients on market leading transactions and SEE-wide corporate advisory mandates for major corporations. The 'top-notch' team is singled out for its 'business approach' and 'the ability to provide tailor-made services'. The 'resourceful and results-oriented' corporate and IT specialist Igor Aleksandrovski jointly leads the team with Emilija Apostolska Temov who is 'a knowledgeable tax expert'. New partner Ana Kolevska, who joined the team from Apave SEE, strengthens the firm’s corporate and commercial offering.

Practice head(s):

Igor Aleksandrovski; Emilija Apostolska-Temov

Other key lawyers:

Ana Kolevska

Testimonials

‘The whole team at Apostolska, Aleksandrovski & Partners (AAP) consists of flexible, professional and dedicated experts. Their legal knowledge is top-notch, their legal support is specifically tailored to their clients’ needs and their expertise is unmatched.  They always set the standards high when it comes to the quality of their services.  Highly recommended team.’

‘Igor Aleksandrovski and Emilija Apostolska are natural born leaders. Their level of commitment, legal expertise and business approach is what sets them apart. We have been working with Igor for quite some time, and he has been the one that always maintains the highest of standards. Emilija always motivates their team to do more and I would say her knowledge is her main strength. Ivana Kostovska is another lawyer I highly recommend. She is an important part of their team, always committed to the success of its clients. Very educated and extremely professional lawyer.’

‘Diverse & dedicated team, that is knowledgeable of various legal areas.  Engaged individuals, creative entrepreneurial mindset. Flexible and agile team that is ready to support in various areas.’

‘Igor Aleksandrovski is always available, with knowledge and connections within Macedonia and around the globe. All other team members proved to us that they have the right support in areas we needed. They are client oriented, committed and reliable. They are able to meet short deadlines, have specialised knowledge in multiple areas and are focused on building strong partnerships. Driven and energetic team, determined to deliver results. More flexible than others and with better response times.’

‘In general the key players are “out of the box” thinkers, creative and able to find solutions fast. The leader of the team is Igor Aleksandrovski. He is persistent, resourceful and results oriented. He has a champion spirit, is highly competent and skilled, yet humble and down-to-earth which makes him also a great communicator. He is also able to remain calm under pressure, has good strategy during negotiations and is resilient.’

Key clients

DS Smith JSC

Colgate / Palmolive

Explotec Mac DOOEL Skopje

Smart Money Solutions JSC

Phoenix Pharma DOOEL Skopje

Kromberg and Schubert

Poligrafsnab JSC Bulgaria

Samsung

Public Company Parking of Municipality of Centre

APAVE SEE

Work highlights

  • Advising Colgate / Palmolive Adria on legal matters regarding operations in the Adria region (Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Hercegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Kosovo, Albania, Bulgaria and North Macedonia).
  • Providing ongoing legal advice to DS Smith, the largest packaging and cardboard producer and one of the largest wastepaper operators in North Macedonia.
  • Assisted Explotec Mac, which is part of the Swiss SSA Group, with its business incorporation in North Macedonia.

Karanovic & Partners in cooperation with local lawyers

Karanovic & Partners in cooperation with local lawyers utilises its regional network and close ties with transatlantic law firms to act for major local and foreign clients on a range of projects in multiple sectors. The growing full-service practice is particularly strong advising on project finance and syndicated loan transactions for major mixed-use developments. The team is also regularly instructed by clients in the IT and renewable energy sectors, and is seasoned in alternative lending transactions. Veton Qoku , who focuses on finance matters, as well as energy and infrastructure projects across the SEE region, manages the firm from its Skopje office. Ljupka Noveska Andonova - a banking and finance, healthcare and employment specialist - is also noted.

Practice head(s):

Veton Qoku; Ljupka Noveska Andonova

Testimonials

‘The team is highly flexible when it comes to answering e-mails quickly and adapting to the latest terms of the transaction. Work is always delivered on time and in excellent quality. Communication is fast and pleasant and the end result satisfactory.’

‘They make cooperation run seamlessly, always being ready to take up a new task and immediately start working on it even when the deadlines are not lenient. I have had the pleasure of working with Ana Kaširska and Veton Quoku in particular who have both stood out in this regard.’

‘Veton Qoku is very professional, responsive and receptive. Very responsive and reliable team.’

‘Veton Qoku has great communication skills.’

Key clients

Regional Cooperation Council

International Finance Corporation USA

Sunel Ticaret Turk Anonim Sirketi

Nouvelles Générations d’Entrepreneurs

Kaltun Madencilik A.Ş.

The Export-Import Bank of China (CEXIM)

Halkbank AD Skopje

PMI Global Services Inc.

International Research & Exchanges Board, Inc

Bauer BG Skopje

Best Trust Latam Skopje

Central Asia Metals

Lear Coporation

Work highlights

  • Supported IFC with respect to two different financing transactions covering North Macedonia.
  • Advised Central Asia Metals, a copper production and mineral exploration company listed on the London Stock Exchange, on the acquisition of Lynx Resources, which operates the SASA zinc-lead mine in North Macedonia.
  • Assisting Halkbank AD Skopje (and a consortium bank) in the provision of a €126m syndicated loan facility to Limak Holding for the construction and development of the Diamond of Skopje Project.

Papazoski and Mishev Law Firm

Papazoski and Mishev Law Firm draws on PwC’s vast global resources and close collaboration with Tsvetkova Bebov Komarevski in Bulgaria to provide SEE region clients with a full scope of legal services. The team acts for a range of established companies and startups on various financing, regulatory and general advisory mandates. Managing partner Kiril Papazoski heads the business law department, and is noted for his experience in corporate restructurings and transactions. Jovan Vrtov is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Kiril Papazoski

Other key lawyers:

Jovan Vrtov

Lawyers Antevski

Lawyers Antevski handles corporate and commercial, M&A, banking and finance, IP and dispute resolution matters. Name partner Zlatko Antevski is highly regarded. In addition to its main Skopje office, it also has representative offices in Liechtenstein and Vienna.

Practice head(s):

Zlatko Antevski

Cakmakova Advocates

Cakmakova Advocates has a full-service practice that regularly acts for large corporate companies, SMEs and individuals. Managing partner Biljana Cakmakova is an energy and finance specialist, whose practice also covers labour law, IP and dispute resolution. Olivera Grozdanovska, Vesna Gavriloska, Elena Dimova-Ivanoska and Vladimir Bocevski are also names to note.

Practice head(s):

Biljana Cakmakova

Other key lawyers:

Olivera Grozdanovska; Vesna Gavriloska; Elena Dimova-Ivanoska; Vladimir Bocevski

CMS

CMS frequently advises a number of leading multinational clients on multi-jurisdictional transactions, concession projects and regulatory matters, including major commercial and multilateral development banks, investment funds, international recycling companies, conventional energy suppliers and utilities providers. The firms is also regularly instructed by clients operating in consumer goods, healthcare, engineering and aviation. Marija Filipovska, experienced on project financing and banking privatisations, leads the team from the Skopje office. Radivoje Petrikić, a seasoned M&A and development specialist on CEE projects, is based out of Serbia.

Practice head(s):

Radivoje Petrikić; Marija Filipovska

Testimonials

‘Available on short term notice.’

‘CMS not only covers North Macedonian law, but offers an overall international approach. Lawyers are extremely experienced in M&A (Due Diligence, Contract negotiation, approval procedure) and have a high understanding of corporate and banking legislation.’

‘Flexibility, understanding of business, and goal-oriented team.’

Georgi Dimitrov Attorneys

Georgi Dimitrov Attorneys advises international clients with a significant presence in the North Macedonian market. The full-service firm is particularly active on litigations, restructurings and M&A transactions for a broad roster of blue-chip clients operating in a number of sectors, including mining and commodities, commercial banking and TMT. Commercial advisory mandates and merger control issues also feature in its recent instructions. The firm is jointly led by Georgi Dimitrov who is 'one of the best corporate and commercial lawyers in North Macedonia', Katarina Ginoska and Nadica Dimovska who are noted for their commercial litigation and arbitration expertise.

Practice head(s):

Georgi Dimitrov; Katarina Ginoska; Nadica Dimovska

Testimonials

‘Georgi Dimitrov Attorneys provided a very innovative interpretation of the mining laws and assisted in communication with relevant institutions which strengthened the legal position of our company. They think outside the box and focus on finding solutions. They can work in short deadlines and under pressure and it does not affect the quality of their work. They have also introduced the platform Akademika, which provides translation consolidated text of national laws and also a lot of available translations.’

‘Our company has worked with Katarina Ginoska. She is a very reliable person, able to provide quality advice and support even in short deadlines. She has great experience and knowledge and her advice has been very helpful and highly appreciated by the company. The entire team is very business-oriented with a deep knowledge of all the legal and taxation aspects of entrepreneurship in Northern Macedonia. Fast and effective. They make you feel confident.’

‘Deep knowledge of the legal and taxation infrastructure, extremely fluent in English, knowledge of the correct way to convey their instructions, and no fear to propose the best way to proceed.’

‘The law firm provides prime legal advice. Very business oriented law firm that makes it a reliable partner when discussing major projects, especially in the field of mining. All of the team members I worked with are very thorough and detailed. Georgi Dimitrov is by far the most distinctive lawyer I have met in North Macedonia.’

‘In our experience Georgi Dimitrov Attorneys are definitely one of the best corporate and commercial lawyers in North Macedonia. They are a full-service firm covering all areas of business (incl. corporate, M&A, commercial, banking and finance, competition, real estate, etc.) – which is quite uncommon in the country. They are very professional and highly experienced. We have worked with them on a number of complex corporate and finance projects – and they have always excelled. Their mining and natural resources practice is by far the best in North Macedonia.’

‘The entire team is great. The main lawyer is Georgi Dimitrov, who is for sure one of the best corporate and business lawyers in North Macedonia. He is sharp, very experienced and a fantastic negotiator. Katarina Ginoska is another key partner. She is great, knowledgeable and very experienced. Jane Ilijeski is also great – very professional, responsive and has great drafting skills.’

‘Excellent, high quality and responsive service. The best in Macedonia that I have worked with. Katarina Ginoska is fantastic and extremely commercial.’

Key clients

Orion Resource Partners

Traxys

Fusion Capital AG

Atalaya Mining

Microsoft

Volvo

Samsung

Philips

Opel

Wiebe

UPS Macedonia, Deutsche Telekom

SOL Group

Macedonian Telecommunications

USJE

Halk Bank

Stopanska Banka

Mermeren Kombinat Prilep

Intracom Greece

Silk Road Capital AG

BlackRock

Work highlights

  • Advised ERGO Western Balkans Solutions on a regional restructuring as well as merger clearance matter.
  • Assisted Alma Media Corporation with the acquisition of a local company.
  • Provides legal support to Microsoft in various corporate issues.

Mens Legis Law Firm

Mens Legis Law Firm’s holistic practice regularly collaborates with large international firms on numerous cross-border advisory mandates for leading regional companies and blue-chip multinationals operating in the market. The team is also frequently active on transactions and pre-acquisition due diligence projects. Founder and managing partner Ljubica Ruben is a highly experienced commercial practitioner. Senior partner Filip Ruben is also noted for his comprehensive knowledge of corporate matters.

Practice head(s):

Ljubica Ruben

Other key lawyers:

Filip Ruben

Popovski & Partners Law Firm

The recently established Popovski & Partners Law Firm is particularly active in advising regional clients in the energy, infrastructure, mining and telecoms sectors, on a range of PPP mandates, concessions, project financings, competition and antitrust clearance, and contentious IP matters. The seasoned team is also experienced in commercial litigation, administrative disputes and international arbitration. Tatjana Popovski-Buloski, formerly of Polenak Law Firm, leads the firm.

Practice head(s):

Tatjana Popovski Buloski

TRPENOSKI Law Firm

Full-service law firm TRPENOSKI Law Firm handles corporate and commercial mandates, competition and corporate governance matters. Natasha Trpenoska Trenchevska, Dejvi Davidovski, Darko Nikodinovski, Leonid Trpenoski and Biljana Miloshevska are names to note.

Practice head(s):

Natasha Trpenoska Trenchevska; Dejvi Davidovski; Darko Nikodinovski; Leonid Trpenoski; Biljana Miloshevska