Firm Profile > Pestalozzi > Zurich, Switzerland


Dispute resolution: arbitration Tier 1

Pestalozzi's large arbitration practice provides 'very thoughtful advice' and stands out for its 'thorough, straightforward and to-the-point communication'. With expertise in the commodities business and regulated industries, Michael Kramer led a team that represented claimant Türkmengaz in a €1.5bn ICC gas supply contract dispute against the National Iranian Gas Company. Other notable individuals include Laurent Killias, who has 'first-class legal mind', and 'highly experienced intellectual property arbitratorThomas Legler.

Dispute resolution: litigation Tier 1

Pestalozzi has 'deep-bench expertise around the Swiss court system'. The team is most experienced in the commodities and financial sectors, as well as post-M&A and white-collar crime cases. 'Top practitionerChristophe Emonet 'deeply cares about his clients' and is representing the Republic of Kazakhstan and the City of Almaty in multi-jurisdictional investigations, global recovery actions and civil disputes against former public agent Viktor Khrapunov. Commercial litigator Michael Kramer, who is based in Zurich, is another core practitioner. Thomas RohnerLaurent KilliasFlorian Mohs and Beat Mumenthaler are other names to note.

Banking and finance: Geneva Tier 2

Pestalozzi Attorneys at Law Ltd stands out for its transaction, regulatory and litigation expertise, including handling civil claims, compliance issues, asset recovery and white-collar crime investigations. Christophe Emonet is advising a Swiss-listed bank on regulatory changes and cross-selling issues in international banking, and is also handling tax compliance litigation against the bank's clients. Ludivine Boisard and Sébastien Roy assisted the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China on financings and commodities trade transactions.

Banking and finance: Zurich Tier 2

Finance transactions, regulatory advice, as well as ancillary services in tax, dispute resolution and compliance are core areas of expertise at Pestalozzi. In recent highlights, Oliver Widmer advised GE Capital on multiple factoring transactions, and assisted Instimatch Global with drafting a new business model, which enables corporations to lend to borrowers. Urs Klöti advised Bank of America Merrill Lynch International on the implementation of a Brexit plan, involving applications for new banking and securities dealer licences.

Capital markets Tier 2

Pestalozzi has strength in derivative and high-yield bond issuances, mainly acting for banks and companies. Other areas of expertise range from transactions, IPOs, private equity financing, private investment in public equity offerings and securitisation to fintech products and regulatory matters. Crédit Agricole, EON, RWE, Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank are among its clients for securitisation and real estate-related capital markets transactions, while Nordea Bank, HSBC and Danske Bank were advised on their respective structured notes programmes. Practice lead Urs Klöti and partner Oliver Widmer are the key practitioners. Debt capital markets lawyer Beat Schwarz and stock exchange specialist Severin Roelli are other names to note.

Commercial, corporate and M&A Tier 2

Pestalozzi's team handles the full range of services in commercial, corporate and M&A, from governance aspects, liability issues and contracts to corporate compliance, reorganisations and transactions. New client American International Group instructed Christoph Lang and Beat Schwarz with the negotiation of an agreement to acquire Validus Holdings for $5.56bn, while Severin Roelli advised on the purchase of Raiffeisen Privatbank Liechtenstein by Mason Group. Christian Leuenberger and Martin Müller are other key partners in Zurich, and Sébastien Roy heads the Geneva practice.

Employment Tier 2

Pestalozzi covers employment, labour and immigration law, with longstanding expertise in contracts, policies and regulations, compensation, share and bonus schemes, employee transfer and outsourcing, as well as transactional, downsizing and mass dismissal matters. In recent work, Martin Müller advised on the staff transfer and pension scheme aspects related to the $8.8bn merger between client Micro Focus International and Hewlett Packard Enterprise Software, while Christian Roos provided similar assistance to AT&T concerning its acquisition of App Nexus.

Healthcare and life sciences Tier 2

Pestalozzi is best known for its M&A, financing, intellectual property, competition, regulatory and compliance work in the healthcare and life sciences sector. Lorenza Ferrari Hofer and Christian Roos are defending Zimmer against product liability claims concerning the client's metal-on-metal hip implants.

Insolvency and corporate recovery Tier 2

Pestalozzi handles insolvency proceedings, asset recovery actions, restructurings, insolvency-related litigation and the recognition process for foreign bankruptcies in Switzerland. Recent highlights for Christophe Emonet include representing the First International Bank of Israel in a loan recovery and avoidance claim against several foreign diamond trade companies. Zurich-based Thomas Rohner is also noted.

Intellectual property Tier 2

Pestalozzi's intellectual property department is recommended for its 'deep knowledge, sharp critical thinking, quick turnaround times and trustworthiness'. It is particularly strong in the protection, licensing and commercialisation of regulated products for the pharmaceutical, cosmetics, medical, IT and food industries, involving trade mark, branding and patent advice and litigation, as well as the defence against product liability claims. The team includes lead partner Lorenza Ferrari Hofer, dispute resolution specialist Thomas Legler and Geneva-based contact Michèle Burnier.

Leading firms: German-speaking Switzerland Tier 2

Pestalozzi has solid expertise in banking and finance, capital markets, dispute resolution, tax, real estate and intellectual property. Well-known partners include Urs Klöti, Oliver Widmer, Christoph Lang, Michael Kramer, Lorenza Ferrari Hofer and Michael Lips.

Real estate and construction Tier 2

'Accomplished in handling real estate transactions', Pestalozzi 'provides efficient, solution-oriented advice and has an excellent understanding of its clients' industry and needs'. Focusing on a diverse range of industrial, commercial and residential construction projects, the department further assists with portfolio transactions, environmental and public-law topics. The 'exceptional' team of partner Michael Lips and associates Andrea Rohrer and Larissa Rickenbacher are advising luxury hotel The Capra on refurbishment, construction and expansion proceedings with authorities and neighbours. McDonald's is a longstanding client, for which the firm provides leasing and construction advice.

Tax Tier 2

The 'experienced' tax practice at Pestalozzi provides 'practical, quality advice' and covers M&A, financing and real estate transactions, as well as tax planning for corporate and private clients, including VAT, withholding and stamp taxes. Practice lead Nils Harbeke assisted with the tax aspects of the intellectual property integration arising from client Mylan's $5.3bn acquisition of Abbott's generic drug business. 'Up-and-coming' corporate tax specialist Jonas Sigrist, who acted for Resonetics on the set-up of a tax-efficient Swiss acquisition structure, financing and share remuneration, made partner in January 2018. Counsel Silvia Zimmermann is also noted.

Competition Tier 3

The practice at Pestalozzi combines competition and international trade matters, focusing on merger notifications, leniency applications, distribution systems, compliance and dawn raid assistance, as well as representation in administrative proceedings. Key partner Christoph Lang advises Koninklijke DSM and Evonik Industries on the merger control aspects of their joint venture aiming to establish a new animal nutrition product.

Insurance Tier 3

The 'responsive and solution-focused' team at Pestalozzi demonstrates 'thorough regulatory know-how in the Swiss and US insurance fields' and is able to 'adapt to the client's needs'. Other areas of expertise are sector-related M&A transactions, as well as corporate and contractual matters. Practice head Christoph Lang and 'knowledgeable and practicalBeat Schwarz acted for AIG on its $5.56bn acquisition of re-insurer Validus, while 'experienced and flexibleChristian Leuenberger regularly assists the same client with the provision of W&I insurance during M&A transactions.

Leading firms: French-speaking Switzerland Tier 3

The Geneva office of Pestalozzi Attorneys at Law Ltd assists with banking, dispute resolution, white-collar criminal investigations, financing and M&A transactions. Sébastien Roy and Christophe Emonet are well known for the aforementioned areas, while Michèle Burnier handles IP and TMT matters.

Private client Tier 3

The 'professional, solution-oriented, flexible and efficient' private client practice at Pestalozzi stands out for its 'know-how and commitment to philanthropic matters' and houses 'some excellent litigators'. It focuses on the global planning, coordination and structuring of private wealth and business assets, using its expertise in tax, inheritance, trust and estate, property and private equity law. Oliver Widmer advises Cern on the merger of two foundations, while Christophe Emonet represents a Russian oligarch in a claim against a Swiss private bank concerning losses in the client's account. 'Skilled, approachable and thoughtfulThomas Rohner is recommended for his 'high-end international litigation work'.

TMT Tier 3

Pestalozzi's TMT team is 'very caring and precise' and 'delivers work to the clients' complete satisfaction'. Covering e-commerce, data protection, IT distribution and outsourcing, telecoms law, as well as fintech and medical tech matters, the practice is led by 'devoted lawyerLorenza Ferrari Hofer, who counts the Southern Switzerland Film Commission among her clients. Intellectual property partners Thomas Legler and Michèle Burnier are other key members of the team.

Pestalozzi is an independent multicultural and multilingual Swiss law firm founded in 1911, focusing on Swiss commercial law and international work. It is one of the country’s most established law firms, with 27 partners and some 70 other fee earners in Zurich and Geneva. Pestalozzi lawyers are capable of handling complex transactions and are team players within interdisciplinary project groups. The firm is part of the Lex Mundi international network and can draw on an extensive international network of lawyers in other jurisdictions, with whom they work seamlessly in multi-jurisdictional matters. Pestalozzi predominantly represents and advises enterprises as well as associations, public institutions, foundations, and private individuals in economic and legal affairs with a connection to Switzerland. About half of the clients are located in Switzerland while the other half is located all over the world and includes top-ranked enterprises, as well as medium-sized and smaller companies from a broad range of sectors.

Department Name Email Telephone
Corporate / M&A Christoph Lang +41 44 217 92 39
Financial Services Urs Klöti +41 44 217 92 92
Litigation & Arbitration Michael Kramer +41 44 217 92 32
Intellectual Property & TMT Lorenza Ferrari Hofer +41 44 217 92 57
Tax Nils Harbeke +41 44 217 92 24
Blockchain & Crypto Assets Oliver Widmer +41 44 217 92 42
Competition & Trade Christoph Lang +41 44 217 92 39
Compliance Urs Klöti +41 44 217 92 92
Employment & Pensions Martin L. Mueller +41 44 217 92 60
Life Sciences Christian Roos +41 44 217 92 00
Private Clients Oliver Widmer +41 44 217 92 42
Real Estate & Environment Michael Lips +41 44 217 92 67
Photo Name Position Profile
Dr Lorenza Ferrari Hofer  photo Dr Lorenza Ferrari Hofer
Dr Jakob Höhn  photo Dr Jakob Höhn
Mr Nils Harbeke  photo Mr Nils Harbeke
Dr Laurent Killias  photo Dr Laurent Killias
Mr Urs Klöti  photo Mr Urs Klöti
Mr Michael Kramer  photo Mr Michael Kramer
Dr Christoph G Lang  photo Dr Christoph G Lang
Dr Christian Leuenberger  photo Dr Christian Leuenberger
Dr Michael Lips  photo Dr Michael Lips
Dr Martin L Müller  photo Dr Martin L Müller
Dr Florian Mohs  photo Dr Florian Mohs
Ms Tanja Planinic  photo Ms Tanja Planinic
Mr Severin Roelli  photo Mr Severin Roelli
Dr Thomas Rohner  photo Dr Thomas Rohner
Mr Christian Roos  photo Mr Christian Roos
Mr Franz Schubiger  photo Mr Franz Schubiger
Mr Beat Schwarz  photo Mr Beat Schwarz
Mr Jonas Sigrist  photo Mr Jonas Sigrist
Mr Oliver Widmer  photo Mr Oliver Widmer
Number of lawyers : 97
at this office : 83
Lex Mundi
Contacts : Michael Kramer
Contacts : Urs Klöti
Other offices : Geneva