Oporto: leading commercial firms in Portugal

Morais Leitão, Galvão Teles, Soares da Silva & Associados

Portuguese powerhouse Morais Leitão, Galvão Teles, Soares da Silva & Associados provides legal services across the board, including in the areas of tax, competition, employment, and insolvency and restructuring. It recently assisted Violas with the acquisition of 25% of Viacer, which partly owns the Super Bock Group. The team includes Bernardo Lobo Xavier, Carlos Osório de Castro, Eduardo Verde Pinho, Luís Gagliardini Graça and António Lobo Xavier, and is praised for its 'attitude, customer orientation and approach to global issues’. Senior associate Vasco da Gama Lobo Xavier is noted for his ‘energy in involving people and for never giving up’. João Anacoreta Correia joined from Uría Menéndez – Proença Carvalho in January 2019. The client roster features names such as Sonae, Nos, BCP, Galp and Corticeira Amorim.

PLMJ

PLMJ adopts a ‘very international' approach and combines a ‘remarkable commitment to its clients’ with ‘common sense in the presentation of fees and time spent on each subject’. The team advised private equity clients on the acquisition of a qualifying holding in Outsystems. ‘Very professional and accurateDiogo Duarte Campos advised the main institutional investors in a judicial challenge to decisions by the Bank of Portugal regarding the resolution applied to BES. Manuel Cavaleiro Brandão is noted for his employment expertise. Miguel C. Reis and João Velez de Lima handle tax. Tomás Pessanha and principal associate Manuel Liberal Jerónimo left to join Garrigues.

Cuatrecasas

The ‘multidisciplinary’ team at the Oporto office of Cuatrecasas stands out for its ‘responsiveness and commercial and flexible approach’. It covers M&A, employment, tax, public law and litigation, and was busy advising public and private-sector clients in relation to real estate projects and transactions taking place in and around the city, and well as assisting with disputes and GDPR matters. José de Freitas, Filipe Avides Moreira and senior associate Mónica Azevedo are the names to note.

TELLES

Oporto firm TELLES has steadily expanded and has been growing its standing in Lisbon. Much of its activity continues to be in the north, however, and it advises on real estate, energy, tax, public law, competition, corporate and M&A, employment, and disputes. Carlos Lucena is especially well regarded. He handles corporate, commercial and M&A work. Other names to note are Miguel Torres for tax matters, Pedro Almeida e Sousa for real estate and public law, Ivone Rocha for energy, and Francisco Espregueira Mendes, who covers competition and employment law.

VdA

Isabel Gião Andrade heads the Oporto office of VDA, which works closely with the Lisbon team. It advised clients in the funds, manufacturing, energy, healthcare and technology sectors on corporate, tax, employment, public law, GDPR, governance and other internal issues, as well as disputes. It assisted CLdN in setting up a company providing ro-ro services as well as with the group’s reorganisation. STCP - Sociedade de Transportes Colectivos do Porto is another client. Managing associate Frederico Antas, Inês Ribera, João Soares Franco and Benedita Gonçalves are also noted.

Abreu Advogados

Especially strong in tax law, and also covering corporate, employment, real estate, disputes and banking and finance, Abreu Advogados' Oporto-based team has ‘broad knowledge’ and a ‘very high capacity of delivering real, immediate help’; it also provides international coverage. Clients include Mapfre, Cepsa, Yellowtell, Porto Vivo and Iberdrola. Maria Dulce Soares covers tax; Rui Peixoto Duarte corporate and commercial matters; Paulo de Tarso Domingues has a focus on contentious matters.

Cavaleiro & Associados

Cavaleiro & Associados is noted for its ‘great team work’ and 'persistence in achieving positive results’. The firm has a strong energy-sector focus, advising on tenders and construction and other projects, but also handles employment, corporate, real estate and planning matters, as well as contentious work. The recommended João Quintela Cavaleiro heads the office jointly with Pedro Seixas Silva.

Garrigues

Rui Valente leads the team at Garrigues, which handled several employment matters, including a collective dismissal and plant closure case for Gomà-Camps. It also carried out M&A, restructuring, corporate, disputes, and tax work. Other clients include Alain Afflelou and Águas do Porto. Tomás Pessanha and principal associate Manuel Liberal Jerónimo were new arrivals from PLMJ.

JPAB - José Pedro Aguiar-Branco Advogados

Well-established Oporto firm JPAB - José Pedro Aguiar-Branco Advogados is valued for its ‘solution-driven approach’, ‘openness’, ‘focus’ and ‘versatility’. Covering corporate, employment, tax and litigation, with a strong focus on the insurance, health and transport sectors, it represents domestic and international clients operating in the city, as well as local and regional municipalities. Founding partner José Pedro Aguiar-Branco covers transactions and disputes; he is sided by head of employment Pedro Botelho GomesMaria de Deus Botelho, who leads the corporate and M&A team, and Alexandra Dias Teixeira and Lourença de Sousa Rita, who respectively head the banking and finance and the civil and real estate practices.

Uría Menéndez - Proença de Carvalho

Uría Menéndez - Proença de Carvalho saw the departure of João Anacoreta Correia to Morais Leitão, Galvão Teles, Soares da Silva & Associados in January 2019. The names to note remain managing associates José Amorim Magalhães and Pedro Teixeira de Sousa, and senior associate Maria João Dias. The team has corporate and M&A, real estate, public law, shipping and disputes experience, and Amorim Magalhães has particular expertise in employment. Other names to note are of counsel António Castro Caldas for tax work, and managing associate André Almeida Martins for the areas of litigation and arbitration, insolvency and restructuring and white-collar crime.

CNA – Curado, Nogueira & Associados

CNA – Curado, Nogueira & Associados provides the full range of business law advice, including public law, projects and IP. It signed a collaboration agreement with Lisbon firm Andersen Tax and Legal | NGMS – Sociedade de Advogados in February 2018. Carla Alexandra Malhão and Luísa Curado are the key contacts.

Miranda & Associados

Miranda & Associados' team is ‘diversified and rigorous’. In line with the firm’s international profile relating to projects and infrastructure work, it assisted clients with construction and public works contracts and related arbitration and litigation, and also handled some transactional work. Tiago Amorim is the name to note.