Insolvency and corporate recovery in Norway
'Strong firm' BAHR is a key choice for bondholders and investment banks for bond defaults, and also handles major insolvencies and cross-border transactions. Richard Sjøqvist leads the group; he recently assisted Nordic Trustees and bondholders with the restructuring of OSA Goliath and advised the largest creditor and bondholders of Norske Skog on its restructuring. The 'highly competent' Karstein Espelid handles contentious work, Rolf Johan Ringdal focuses on debt restructuring and refinancing transactions, Audun Nedrelid specialises in financing work, and Atle Skaldebø-Rød is experienced in restructuring disputes. Peter Bugge Hjorth joined Advokatfirmaet Schjødt AS in 2018.
Kvale Advokatfirma DA's breadth across bankruptcy, insolvency and restructuring work benefits its financial institutions client base, which includes Danske Bank, Bank2 and DNB Bank. The group is particularly recognised for its efforts in bankruptcy work; recent work includes handling Atlantic Offshore's bankruptcy estate, advising on the bankruptcy estate of Bandak Holding and its subsidiaries, and assisting the bankruptcy estate of Norpost. Thomas Piro heads the department, which also includes the highly regarded Tom Hugo Ottesen, Stine Snertingdalen and real estate and construction restructuring specialist Espen Hamar.
'Established leading player in the field' Ro Sommernes Advokatfirma DA fields 'an entire team of highly acknowledged and respected' individuals, who 'have a practical mindset and top-class legal competence'. Practice head Håvard Wiker is 'a skilled and experienced adviser', Knut Ro is 'excellent', Erik Sandtrø is 'solution oriented', and Nils Holger Koefoed is 'a true fighter'. In a recent highlight, Wiker acted for the administrator of EMAS-AMC's bankruptcy estate; other work includes advising Boa Offshore on its restructuring, assisting Hurtigruten with the restructuring of distressed company Kleven Verft, and handling the bankruptcy of Thule Drilling.
The 'well-known and experienced' team at Wikborg Rein is 'highly respected in the market', with clients praising group co-heads Leif Petter Madsen and Kaare Christian Tapper as 'best-in-class in the market' and 'able to provide truly unique and valuable advice'. Madsen recently assisted Blue Water Energy with the insolvent estates of Halvoersen Group and Halvorsen Offshore, and Tapper advised a financial creditor on the bankruptcy of RenoNorden. Marius Gisvold focuses on restructurings, and acted for several senior lenders on the restructuring of the Island Offshore Group.
Erling Ueland leads the department at Advokatfirmaet Schjødt AS, which excels in restructuring work, particularly in the oil and gas and offshore sectors; clients include Songa Offshore, Lundin Petroleum and Ocean Yield. Johan Henrik Nossum recently acted for the Norske Skog Group on its bankruptcy, Thomas Dale advised DVB Group Merchant Bank on the restructuring of Azur Offshore's debt, and Siv Sandvik represented CFG Peru Investments in a Chapter 11 process in the US. Peter Bugge Hjorth joined from BAHR in 2018.
The 'well-coordinated and responsive' practice at Advokatfirmaet Selmer AS is 'always available' and is noted for its financial restructuring expertise in the oil and offshore sectors led by Tor Herdlevær. Herdlevær's recent work includes advising the unsecured creditors and affiliated debtors of Seadrill on its restructuring, and assisting Eidesvik Offshore with its restructuring. Other clients include SpareBanken Vest, Eksportkreditt Norge and Nordic Trustee. Thomas Steen Brandi is also noteworthy and focuses on restructuring, insolvency and compliance work, and investigations.
With 'a combination of academic nous and street smarts', Advokatfirmaet Simonsen Vogt Wiig excels in the shipping, oil and offshore industries handling restructurings and bankruptcies for a client roster, which includes BNP Paribas, Danske Bank and Nordea Bank. The team also assisted DVB Bank and Sparebanken (each as head of two bank syndicates) with the restructuring of Island Offshore, and advised ABN Amro Bank and DVB Bank on the restructuring of Viking Supply Ships. Peter Aall Simonsen leads the Oslo group; 'strong communicator and solution-focused' Bjørn Åge Hamre heads the Bergen team, which also includes litigator Egil Horstad; and the Trondheim practice is led by Nils Håkon Risberg.
Advokatfirmaet Thommessen AS' 'strong team of restructuring lawyers is experienced in the shipping and offshore sectors' and 'has the experience, tools, manpower and know-how to handle matters competently and efficiently'. Group head Kristoffer Hegdahl has 'good insight into the offshore industry and performs well'; he recently acted for seven banks including DNB and Nordea Bank on the restructuring of Solship Invest 3. Financing expert Einar Grette, bond restructuring specialist Halvor Mansåker and associate partner Reidar Myhre are also names to note. Jo Rodin retired.
Ståle Gjengset heads the department at Wiersholm, which focuses on restructuring work at a national and international level with substantial experience in shipping and offshore matters. In a recent highlight, Gjengset assisted Nordic Trustee with a bond restructuring; other mandates include Sverre Sandvik advising Viking Supply Ships and its subsidiaries on its restructuring, and Kristine Hasle Øverby acting for Archer on the restructuring of its credit facilities. Kaare Sverdrup is a key name for insolvency work and financing issues. Leif Moltke-Hansen retired. Atle Gabrielsen was a new arrival from Arntzen de Besche.
At Arntzen de Besche, the 'highly reputable' team covers insolvency, restructuring and refinancing work; the group's restructuring expertise includes debt restructuring, asset recovery litigation and corporate reorganisations, while it handles crisis management issues, workforce reductions and bankruptcies on the insolvency side. Practice leader Joar Grimsbu and Stein Tonning handled a debt restructuring and bankruptcy proceedings for the bankruptcy estate of Reinertsen; Trond Kildal is another key practitioner. Atle Gabrielsen joined Wiersholm.
DLA Piper's clients feel 'valued and important' thanks to 'a sympathetic, knowledgeable and competent' department led by Egil Hatling, who 'takes good care of his clients from beginning to end'. Frode Finnøy, Johan Ratvik and Erik Ramm are also key practitioners; Finnøy regularly acts as estate trustee and handles debt negotiations, Ratvik focuses on insolvency work, and Ramm handles restructurings. Clients include Centennial, Norwegian Insurance Brokers and Hennes & Mauritz.
The 'innovative' practice at SANDS has 'in-depth knowledge' of bankruptcies, insolvencies and restructuring mandates; it recently represented Terra Securities in bankruptcy proceedings, and advised Cecon on its bankruptcy. Practice head Jon Skjørshammer led the work and has 'excellent negotiating abilities'. Robert Jensen is the key name for contentious work. Brandment, KM Energy, Prima Invest, Transportnett and Svea Finans are also clients.
With 'a broad and experienced team in bankruptcies', Advokatfirmaet Ræder AS's 'practical and highly knowledgeable' group recently acted for Lise og Arnfinn Hejes Fond in bankruptcy proceedings and handled Hospital Organiser's bankruptcy proceedings. Anne Christine Wettre heads the team and is 'detail oriented and very proactive', Erling Opdal 'always delivers', and Anne Gro Enger handles tax-related matters.
Advokatfirmaet Grette AS is recognised for its restructuring and distressed M&A experience, and also handles insolvency and restructuring-related litigation. Thomas J. Fjell leads the team and managing partner Jacob S. Bjønness-Jacobsen focuses on financial workouts and restructuring distressed companies. Clients include DNB Bank, Halcyon Capital Management and Danske Bank.
Advokatfirmaet Haavind AS leverages its 'sensible, no-nonsense, low-key approach' to 'consistently stay on target' and provide 'a highly professional and knowledgeable service'. Clients single out group head Ellen Schult Ulriksen as 'a fantastic partner who is amazing through the whole process'; she advised Santander Consumer Bank on its defaulting financial arrangements and handles customer and distributor non-payment issues for Ahlsell Norge.
Kluge Advokatfirma AS' client base encompasses companies experiencing financial distress and market difficulties; it acted for Bane Nor on the restructuring of Societa' Italiana per Condotte d'Acqua, assisted former bondholders of Crudecorp with bankruptcy issues and advised AF Gruppen on Submet Construction's insolvency. Hans Ingvald Stensholdt is the key contact in Oslo and Per Kristian Ramsland handles work out of the Stavanger office.