José María Méndez, ‘an excellent lawyer with an exceptional knowledge of the Spanish audiovisual market’, heads the TMT department at Baker McKenzie, which boasts a notable coverage of the discipline and is particularly known for its capabilities in the media and technology sectors in areas related to copyright, data protection, privacy and regulatory. The team is also active in structured financing deals for studios and production companies. Senior associate Sara García, who has a focus on media and entertainment, is another key member of the team. Former department co-head Raúl Rubio left the firm in September 2021.
Industry focus: TMT in Spain
Other key lawyers:
‘At Baker McKenzie they are experts in intellectual property, audiovisual law and in the media sector. They have extensive experience in audiovisual production, tax incentives, management entities, regulatory issues (AVMS, CNMC, ICAA) and review of chains of rights (chain of title). They know in detail the Spanish market and its different actors, streaming platforms, production companies, etc.’
‘José María Méndez is the cornerstone of the Intellectual Property and Media area, an excellent lawyer with exceptional knowledge of the Spanish audiovisual market. In the team, Sara García stands out, a decisive lawyer, with skills to carry out a large volume of work to the satisfaction of the client.’
ECIJA houses a large and ‘very responsive’ specialised TMT practice, which is always up to date ‘with the latest developments’ and earns plaudits for its ‘quality and knowledge’ of the sector. The team, which has established a strong reputation for matters pertaining to technology and the ‘the risks and opportunities’ in the sector, includes a number of renowned market experts, including founding partner Hugo Écija; managing partner Alejandro Touriño; ‘great negotiator’ Juan Salmeron; Emilio Prieto; and Cristina Villansante, appointed partner in December 2020. The department has been further reinforced with the arrival of two more partners, Helena Suárez and José Antonio Suárez, who joined from DA Lawyers in July 2021.
Other key lawyers:
‘The team are great because they understand profoundly the technology industry and the risks and opportunities within it.’
‘Juan Salmeron is a stand out partner in my view. Practical and a great negotiator.’
‘I believe that in Technology there is no other team like it in any other office in Spain. For their volume (they have an army of lawyers) and their ability to handle complex matters, they are excellent.’
‘I would highlight their availability and ability to resolve unforeseen events.’
‘It is a very business-oriented team that knows perfectly the sector on which they are required to give their advice.’
‘Speed, quality, and knowledge of the area of expertise.’
‘It is a specialty that requires high technical knowledge combined with the need to understand the specific needs of the business. This is something that ECIJA has achieved with great success.’
‘Precision and quality and sound advice always. Very responsive and always updated with the latest developments.’
ACB (National Basketball League)
Bupa Group (Sanitas)
Atlético de Madrid
- Advising Inditex on information technology, privacy, new cookies requirements for websites and e-commerce, among other matters.
- Advising Mercadona on the implementation of the first European facial recognition system for the detection of persons.
- Advised Mediawan on all legal, corporate, and media regulatory aspects for the creation of a production hub in Spain, called Mediawan Studios Spain.
Garrigues garners praise from clients for its ‘rigour and technical excellence’, which the team puts to use when covering the full spectrum of TMT matters, where it stands out particularly for its transactional capabilities. The sizeable practice, which offers ‘innovative and practical solutions’ and boasts a ‘deep understanding of the technology sector and digital platforms’, is jointly led by technology expert José Ramón Morales; Carolina Pina, who specialises in media matters; Javier Marzo, who focuses on telecoms and media; and Alejandro Padín, who has considerable expertise in data protection matters. Cristina Mesa, who was promoted to partner in January 2021, is another name to note.
‘Rigor and technical excellence. They offer innovative and practical solutions with in-depth knowledge of the technology sector and digital platforms.’
‘Knowledge and extensive experience in advising projects in the digital sector in different markets. The technical quality of the team and the accessibility of the partners. Special mention to Cristina Mesa, reference lawyer for IP matters, with extensive experience advising platforms and offering innovative and practical solutions. I also especially mention Katiana Otero, for her technical rigor and dedication in matters of great complexity in data protection.’
‘Great technical excellence.’
‘In particular, José Ramón Morales is an excellent professional, always up-to-date in the most cutting-edge areas of technology law and with an extraordinary practical vision. Carolina Pina also stands out as a great strategist in matters of conflicts in relation to intellectual property.’
RBA HOLDING DE COMUNICACIÓN
- Advised IBM on the acquisition of a majority stake in Naturgy IT, the joint venture outsourcing company which provides IT infrastructure services to Naturgy Energy Group.
- Advised AENA regarding a new biometric project for managing access of people to airports and improve the travellers’ experience.
- Advised Telxius in the landing party agreement with Google in connection with the landing in Spain of the Grace Hooper submarine system.
The TMT practice at Uría Menéndez, forming part of the firm’s well-established digital law group, is highlighted for its ‘technical quality’, and has notable skills in a range of areas, including cybersecurity, IT, AI, big data and fintech. A renowned expert in the market, Pablo González-Espejo heads the department, closely supported by the ‘exceptional’ Leticia López-Lapuente, who garners praise for her ‘technical knowledge in IT’ and ‘ability to negotiate and find solutions and to coordinate complex projects’. Skilled litigator Borja Sainz de Aja and senior associate Reyes Bermejo Bosch, who focuses her practice on data protection, e-commerce and information technology, bring additional expertise to the team.
‘I really like the Uria team, because they respond quickly and have been working with us for a long time and they know our solution.’
‘Leticia Lopez Lapuente is exceptional.’
‘Leticia Lopez Lafuente stands out for her technical knowledge in IT, ability to negotiate and search for solutions and coordination of complex projects.’
‘Leticia López Lafuente: Coordination, teamwork and responsibility on the issues. Conflict resolution and teamwork.’
‘Uría is synonymous with technical quality. Very quick response and availability.’
‘I would highlight Leticia Lapuente and Carlos Paredes.’
‘A young team with exceptional technical training. Always available and very involved in the client’s projects.’
‘I would highlight the high qualification and level of availability.’
Johnson & Johnson
- Advised on the design and launch of Telefónica’s new e-health business named Movistar Salud, a digital platform that offers on a B2B and B2B2C basis a wide range of e-health services by digital means.
- Provided regulatory and litigation advice to Facebook in connection with: (i) the launch of disruptive AI and augmented reality products, (ii) the filing of a claim for the infringement of IP rights by a hacker.
- Advising on the sale by Prisa of its Santillana business (book editors) to the Finnish group Sanoma.
'Focused on providing practical solutions to the problems raised', Clifford Chance's multidisciplinary department is led by Jaime Almenar, ‘an excellent lawyer who knows not only the law but also the technical aspects’. The firm acts as a regular advisor for an impressive roster of clients, particularly from the telecoms sector, and has a significant presence in large-scale corporate deals carried out in recent times, assisting names like Telefónica, Cellnex and MÁSMÓVIL.
Other key lawyers:
Carlos Zabala; Carme Briera; Miguel Odriozola; Belen Irisarry
‘Clifford Chance’s team is led by Jaime Almenar, who is not only an expert in the field but an excellent lawyer who knows not only law but also technical aspects. The team is also multidisciplinary and clearly focused on providing practical solutions to the problems raised.’
‘I especially mention Jaime Almenar who is in my opinion an exceptional lawyer. He is very quick-minded, and very intelligent to provide solutions that really add value, not just telling you what the rule says. He interprets it and gives options.’
‘Great professionals with a name that precedes them. Their advice is very rigid and of very high quality.’
‘Jaime Almenar Belenguer: I’d highlight his professionalism, expertise in the field and human quality. Carlos Zabala has great knowledge of the telco sector and is a very good proceduralist.’
‘I would highlight Miguel Odriozola, for his way of approaching legal issues, always considering the impact on the business and providing creative solutions. His proximity and his ability to adapt to the company are exceptional. Belen Irisarry, for the depth of her analysis, her absolute availability and the exquisite personal treatment she provides to her clients.’
Ajuntament de Barcelona (Barcelona City Council)
Asterion Industrial Partners
Digital Data Centre BidCo, S.L.U
Grupo Ezentis S.A.
HSBC Bank plc
Madrid Bar Association (Ilustre Colegio de Abogados de Madrid or ICAM)
Mutualidad de la Abogacía
- Advised MÁSMÓVIL on the €2bn friendly takeover bid over Euskaltel, through MÁSMÓVIL wholly owned company, Kaixo Telecom.
- Advising Cellnex on the acquisition of the European telecommunications tower assets of CK Hutchison Holdings.
- Advised KKR on a €1.5bn bolt-on acquisition by Telxius; Telxius has agreed to acquire, from Telefonica’s subsidiary in Germany (O2 Deutschland), circa 10,100 mobile sites in Germany.
Renowned for its expertise in the telecoms sector, CMS Albiñana y Suárez de Lezo‘s TMT team, which is divided between the Barcelona and Madrid offices, is jointly led by 'excellent professional' Javier Torre de Silva, who also co-leads the firm's global telecommunications group; Jorge Sánchez, whose ‘technical and industry knowledge is second to none’; and María González Gordon, who focuses on IP and digital business and handles the practice’s media-related matters.
‘The team is a strong point, total involvement and availability in projects, tasks and consultations. I would highlight the cohesion and internal coordination.’
‘Javier Torre de Silva: I consider him an excellent professional, an in-depth student of the subjects. He really contributes a plus.’
‘They have a very solid knowledge of the matter and propose flexible solutions without losing sight of legal certainty.’
‘Javier Torre de Silva is an extraordinary lawyer who, without a doubt, should be around for all delicate matters.’
‘Jorge Sánchez is simply exceptional. He is master of all facets, he is brilliant, his technical and industry knowledge is second to none, he is extremely commercial, he knows all regulatory aspects perfectly, etc. We only have good words for Jorge and that is the reason why we always work with Jorge for the operations we do in Spain in the telecommunications sector.’
‘Jorge works like crazy. And best of all, he always does it with a smile on his face. He is a super nice person with a tremendously positive attitude, and that helps not only when it comes to getting work done, but also in negotiations since he knows how to stay calm and redirect a discussion that has been possibly derailed.’
‘The team led by Javier Torre de Silva Silva have the highest level from the technical point of view and a great closeness to the specific problems of the clients.’
‘Javier Torre de Silva is outstanding in his knowledge of legal technique, in his relationships with the actors in the sector; his works constitute references for those interested in the practice of telecommunications in Spain.’
Ferrovial Group and Fundación CI3
The World Bank
- Advised Macquarie Capital on the acquisition of a majority stake in the fibre optic network in rural areas owned by MásMóvil.
- Advised the World Bank in relation to the existing legal framework in Bolivia regarding digital identity, including data protection, cybercrime, cybersecurity, social inclusion and digital signature issues.
- Representing Caixabank in court proceedings initiated to challenge the Spanish Data Protection Authority’s decision imposing a fine of €6m.
Operating from Madrid and Barcelona, Cuatrecasas houses a sizeable, multidisciplinary TMT practice, which shows a particular dexterity in media and IT-related matters. Álvaro Bourkaib, who has put his expertise to use in some large transactional cases in the industry, and IT and intellectual property expert Albert Agustinoy, head the department. Alejandro Negro, recently promoted counsel Jorge Monclús, and María Pérez, who has experience representing clients in the telecoms sector in regulatory and contractual disputes, are other key members of the team.
AMAZON WEB SERVICES
- Acted for Airbnb in IP and e-commerce issues.
- Advising Microsoft on several regulatory, data protection and public law aspects of its telecommunication services.
- Advising Sanoma on drawing up agreements on industrial and intellectual property matters (including licenses and assignments) within the framework of acquiring Santillana Educación and its regional subsidiaries.
DLA Piper is well versed across the spectrum of telecoms and media work, and is highlighted for its ability to take on ‘the toughest innovative matters’. Clients benefit from the expertise of the Spanish team, headed by technology and privacy law specialist Diego Ramos, which can also draw from the firm’s global strength in this field. Also noted is Paula González de Castejón, who leads the gaming and gambling practice and has solid experience in technology and IP.
Other key lawyers:
‘Their expertise and their experience is very useful in order to deal with the toughest innovative matters.’
EOLO toys Limited
LG Electronics Inc
Trumpf GmbH & Co. KG
- Advised HBO in connection with age rating requirements under the Spanish legislation and market practice.
- Advised International Olympic Committee in connection to the privacy standards of IOC global reach events.
- Advised Trumpf GmbH & Co in connection with the assessment of its ownership rights on twenty state-of-the-art software applications in the context of a corporate deal.
Gómez-Acebo & Pombo's reputed practice has ‘in-depth knowledge of the industry sector in Spain and its regulatory environment’, and has a proven track record advising local and international corporations on the full gamut of TMT matters. ‘Unique in terms of quality of the work and people’, the team is headed by the ‘extremely professional and talented’ Almudena Arpón De Mendívil, who has strong regulatory knowledge of the telecoms sector. Of counsel Ana Santamaría and senior associate Bárbara Sainz De Vicuña are other key names in the department.
‘The lawyers of this practice are very sophisticated and specialised in the matters of their field. In addition, they work very well as a team.’
‘The lawyers of the firm deliver a high quality work and have an excellent delivery.’
‘They are unique in terms of quality of the work and people.’
‘Almudena Arpon is a star. She leads the TMT practice providing circumstantiated and timely advice to her clients. She is a great lawyer. She makes complicated things easy with a very pragmatic and empathic approach which is very much appreciated by clients.’
‘Almudena Arpon de Morville is the key lawyer of our project. She is extremely professional and talented.’
‘Extensive technical knowledge in a specific regulatory area and with cross-border knowledge.’
‘I would highlight the knowledge and availability of Carolina Posse.’
‘They have an in depth knowledge of the industry sector in Spain and its regulatory environment. They also have excellent business awareness and pragmatism with unrivalled client service and responsiveness.’
CELLNEX TELECOM S.A.
ENTERTAINMENT ONE UK LIMITED (eOne)
HEINEKEN ESPAÑA, S.A.
- Advised Cellnex on all aspects of its agreement with Deutsche Telekom to merge their tower businesses in the Netherlands.
- Advising Círculo Fortuny on three main areas related to technology: digital environment provoked by Covid-19 requirements; the impact of the EU Digital Services Act package; and the impact on digital developments of the EU recovery plan.
- Advised Heineken on the launch of its new advertising campaign.
The ‘responsive, commercial and super pragmatic’ TMT practice at Ramón y Cajal Abogados has a good reputation across a wide variety of IT matters, being particularly active in privacy and gaming as well as IT agreements and e-commerce. Praised for always delivering ‘on-point advice’, the department is jointly led by Antonio de Mariano and Norman Heckh, who is at the forefront of ‘technology and data privacy developments in Europe’. Senior associate María Luisa González and Antonio Borjas provide key support.
‘Great expertise which they also can explain in layman’s terms. Also very good in negotiating with counterparties to get to a common ground. Good communicators both ways.’
‘Norman Heckh is are very hands on, available and has great expertise in the matters that are important to us. Very good in communicating with us as client as well as our business partners to find a great solution for everybody.’
‘Excellent team. Good attention.’
‘The TMT team is responsive, commercial and super pragmatic in its approach to the advice they provide to us and our clients. They have an excellent insight into the priorities and challenges that clients face when trying to address the fast developing and often conflicting technology and data privacy legal developments and how those issues can be addressed in a sensible and practical way.’
‘Norman Heckh is a fantastic lawyer who has an excellent understanding of the difficulties our clients face with respect to the constantly emerging and contrasting technology and data privacy developments in Europe. He is very responsive, commercial and pragmatic in his advice which is impressive given the laws in this area (particularly in Spain) are often very legal, theoretical and not easy to grapple with from a business point of view.’
‘The team has a broad knowledge and is very competent and friendly. They are our go-to law firm in Spain as they always deliver on-point advice. Unlike other firms, we do not have to chase them and we always receive the required advice on time.’
‘Norman Heckh has a very broad knowledge in his field of work and is always keeping up to date – not only regarding developments in Spain, but also in other jurisdictions. We have had profound discussions about how to interpret the law and this has always broadened my horizon. Norman delivers quality work on time and we would never use any other Spanish lawyer. In addition to his legal skills, Norman’s German skills are outstanding and German clients appreciate this “extra value skill” a lot.’
‘The performance of the team was very good! I believe they have a good overal understanding of how technology works, making the topics more easy to deal with.’
Celering Smart Mobility Services
Network Steel Resources
Springer Sport Spain (Bet3000)
Optima Information Services
Renata Franca Group
- Advising the digital legal area of Repsol on all intellectual and industrial property, IT and digital law matters.
- Advising Evolution on the setup of live stream studio for the broadcast of games in Madrid; its operation in a joint venture in with Spanish operator; and a gambling platform integration.
- Avising BMW on the implementation of various tools and apps for users and car distributors and reviewing all related IT agreements.
Operating from Barcelona and Madrid, the TMT practice at DWF-RCD boasts particular expertise in technology-related work, and garners praise for its ‘extensive knowledge of the start-up world’, as well as the fintech sector. IT specialist Ignasi Costas heads the department, which includes Carles Ros, who advises start-ups and e-commerce companies on day-to-day matters and transactional work; and associates Josu Ibarzabal and Ramón Manyà.
‘Something that I value very positively is their extensive knowledge of the start-up world: they know specific topics of application to the sector (partner agreements, phantom shares, non-competition agreements …), they work at a very agile pace with demanding deadlines (similar to a start-up) and have experts in all legal fields (tax, labor, innovation …). With them you can delegate all the legal matters and focus on what really matters: growing the business. Switching to DWF-RCD was without a doubt the best possible decision.’
‘The people are very close and we have direct contact with the lawyer responsible for our project (Ramon Manyà, from the Innovation Department) through email, telephone or even WhatsApp for urgent matters. Ramon channels the query and, if he does not know the answer, moves it internally with the different experts of the office, and in days we have the issue solved. Ramon and his team are used to working with the work rhythms of a startup and have experience in most of the topics that cover the day-to-day of a start-up. Other people from DWF-RCD that I would like to highlight are Alejandro Griffiths and Oscar Alegre.’
‘I would highlight the agility and flexibility, as well as the personal relationship that goes beyond the business.’
‘The team is quite focused towards spinoff and startup companies and their problems, they are responsive and fast.’
‘I believe that their deep knowledge and implication in the startup field makes them different from other legal advisory offices in Spain. They also take a very active role in fostering the development of the deep-tech environment as well as in publicising and disseminating the benefits from the startup ecosystem.’
According to a client, EY Abogados’ practice head Blanca Escribano and counsel Sofía Fontanals ‘are a reference in the digital law sector and, in particular, in telecommunications law’. These two fields are core strengths of the department, which also covers the full TMT offering, advising on commercial, regulatory and litigation matters. The team also acts for clients regarding their digital transformations and the enforcement of new technologies.
Other key lawyers:
‘I would highlight Sofía Fontanals and Blanca Escribano, for being a reference in the digital law sector and, in particular, in telecommunications law, as there are very few firms with specific knowledge in this matter.’
‘Its strength in my opinion is that EY are not only lawyers but they have consultants and technical people, which makes it a very suitable firm for large projects that require a multidisciplinary approach.’
‘I have worked with Blanca Escribano, whom I consider to be a very good professional and very up-to-date with all the technical news.’
‘A great level of cooperation and cohesion. Proven effectiveness in a highly competitive digital environment.’
‘It is a choral team with a lot of and very solid experience, especially in the media and telecommunications (data protection) side.’
‘Blanca Escribano: reference in media and telecommunications. 20 years of experience. She is practical and close. Combines the experience with a fresh and modern approach. Sofía Fontanals: Blanca Escribano’s right-hand: she is a first-rate complement.’
‘The E&Y TMT team develops a best-in-class practice in Spain, they have the most developed knowledge and competence in the sector. They provide information and experience when required.’
‘Experience, knowledge of the Spanish sector as well as European regulation. Blanca Escribano has the information on the future of the regulatory packages, follows the regulatory process throughout its processing, is a great partner of the firm, of course. Sofía Fontanals is also a prominent member of the team.’
Evolutio Cloud Enabler (formerly, BT)
Lyntia Networks (formerly, Ufinet Telecom)
Ingeniería y Técnica del Transporte (TRIA)
Association of Publishers/Asociación de Medios de Información (AMI)
Grupo Prensa Ibérica
Entertainment One (eOne)
- Provided telecoms regulatory advice to a client in Spain and coordinated a related international regulatory project involving 13 additional jurisdictions.
- Advising an international tech provider and smart hardware manufacturer on commercial/contractual and regulatory matters.
- Provided regulatory advice for an Asian state-owned infrastructure operator with regard to the deployment of a 5G network.
Hogan Lovells International LLP's IP, media and technology team has a solid reputation in the market, and garners praise for its ‘highly specialised technology and data privacy practice’, which is headed by Gonzalo F. Gállego, regarded by some as ‘one of the greatest experts in Spain’. The growing practice has incorporated notable practitioners who have reinforced the practice in recent years, as is the case with senior associate Santiago De Ampuero and associate Victor Mella, who bring in key expertise to the department.
‘Hogan Lovells is a firm with a highly specialised technology and data privacy practice. They are very expert and provide very commercial advice and with fine knowledge of the industry.’
‘Closeness, agility, very high technical advice.’
‘Excellent team – maximum technical level and excellent involvement’
‘Super specialised knowledge and excellent service. I highlight Gonzalo Gallego – one of the greatest experts in Spain. Excellent treatment with the client and with the counterparts and with a very practical approach. Victor Mella has also made a very good impression on me.’
Fomento de Construcciones y Contratas (FCC)
- Advised Repsol on a wide variety of IP/IT contractual matters.
- Assisted FCC in the review and negotiation of several IT-related agreements.
Counsel and technology expert Andy Ramos Gil De La Haza steers the department at Pérez-Llorca, which has good knowledge of all regulatory aspects affecting the activity of both public and private technology companies, and telecoms and media service providers. Associate Andrea Sánchez brings in key support to the practice.
Other key lawyers:
Comunidad Filmin, S.L.
Zoconet, S.L. (TodoColección)
Hipogés Iberia, S.L.
Custom Implants, S.L.
Komvida Kombucha, S.L.
Reby Rides, S.L.
- Advising FounderNest on data protection issues related to international data transfers and the adaptation to the European data protection regulatory framework.
- Advised Filmin on the adequacy of its internal processes and its relationship with third parties in the field of data protection.
- Advised Reby with regard to a request for information sent by the Spanish Data Protection Agency as a result of a complaint filed by a competitor of the client.
Santiago Mediano Abogados
The practice at Santiago Mediano Abogados boasts a notable specialisation in IT and media, with solid capabilities in privacy and data protection, advertising and online marketing, e-commerce and technology agreements. Santiago Mediano and Santiago Ilundáin are focused on the media and entertainment side of the practice. Managing partner Javier Berrocal replaced Juan Carrasco as practice head.
Javier Berrocal; Santiago Ilundáin
Other key lawyers:
IP and media law expert Vicente Arias Máiz heads the TMT practice at Eversheds Sutherland, which has a particular focus on the media and entertainment sectors. The team, which includes senior associate Celia Bouzas, handles both day-to-day advice and IP litigation, mainly related to patent and copyright infringement in the music industry.
‘The TMT team is characterized by its specialization and transversal approach with an exhaustive knowledge of our sector, offering daily 360 advice on: data protection, intellectual property and electronic commerce, especially in the drafting of contracts. We highlight the proximity, excellence and quality of their services from the lawyers.’
‘The team, led by Vicente Arias, has an important reputation. Vicente is a genius, he knows the sector in depth, he goes straight to the point and always 2 steps ahead, anticipating events, something that for us is fundamental. Celia Bouzas is very receptive, being fast and precise with an impeccable work and, Lara Barrasa is always available and very accessible, giving us the necessary advice at all times adapting to our needs and times, all of this, with full knowledge of our business.‘
Sony ATV Music Publishing (SM Publishing Spain)
Warner Music Spain
Warner Chappell Music Spain
Music Sales (now Wise Music)
Kobalt Music Group
The ‘transparent and commercial’ TMT practice at Linklaters advises both Spanish and international companies on regulatory and contentious matters relating to data protection and privacy, and is particularly well versed in telecoms regulatory and M&A. Carmen Burgos and José Giménez are key contacts in the team.
Other key lawyers:
José Giménez; Ceyhun Pehlivan
‘The team’s advice is clear, transparent and commercial – which is particularly important in TMT transactions. Linklaters were quick to respond and the breadth of advice relating to different EU jurisdictions is useful.’
‘Ceyhun Pehlivan has been particularly supportive and very helpful in supporting transactions with data privacy issues.’
Red Eléctrica de España
Daiwa Energy & Infrastructure