Firm Profile > Stibbe > Brussels, Belgium

Stibbe
CENTRAL PLAZA
LOKSUMSTRAAT 25/ RUE DE LOXUM 25
1000 BRUSSELS
Belgium

Competition: Belgian law Tier 1

Stibbe acts on around a third of merger control cases opened in Belgium each year. In addition, the firm has been able to capture a large share of interim measures cases involving the Belgian competition authorities. It also has a significant number of cartel investigations in its work portfolio. Peter Wytinck leads the team, which includes Sophie Van Besien (who joined from bpost in December 2019) and recently promoted counsel Delphine Gillet. Wytinck and others represented the Port of Antwerp in proceedings arising from its decision to grant a reduction on compensation due by PSA and Antwerp Gateway because they did not meet the minimum tonnage requirements that the port had previously determined for container operators at Deurganck dock.

Practice head(s):

Peter Wytinck

Other key lawyers:

Sophie Van Besien; Delphine Gillet

Key clients

The University Hospital of Leuven

The Hospital of Aalst

The Hospital of Groeninge

The Hospital of Waregem

The Hospital of Ronse

The Maria Middelares Hospital of Ghent

The Sint-Elisabeth Hospital of Zottegem

The Belgian football association

Providence Equity Partners

Schindler

Sibelco

Tessenderlo Chemie

The Port of Antwerp and the Port of Zeebrugge

D’Ieteren

Metro/Makro

Bekaert

MAN (trucks)

Dispute resolution Tier 1

Hans Van Bavel leads the team at Stibbe, which garners praise for its 'solid expertise in handling international arbitration and litigation'. Financial disputes are a core area of strength for the group, which is also adept at representing clients in commercial, corporate, insolvency and construction litigation, among other areas. Key names in the practice include 'quick thinker' Nicolas Résimont and Oliver Stevens, who is very experienced in handling contentious financial and insurance work. Paul Van der Putten excels in insolvency litigation. Counsel Sophie Bourgois is 'a strong litigator and arbitrator'.

Practice head(s):

Hans Van Bavel

Other key lawyers:

Oliver Stevens; Nicolas Résimont; Paul Van der Putten; Sophie Bourgois

Testimonials

Stibbe has an excellent team of highly skilled professionals. The team is pragmatic, commercial and have a very hands-on approach. They are responsive, thorough and efficient. Their work is highly solution-oriented and precise. They have the ability to explain complex legal matters in an understandable way‘.

Nicolas Résimont stands out. He is a very experienced and knowledgeable litigator with convincing pleading skills. He is a formidable advocate and excellent strategist. He is one of the most agile litigators I have ever met‘.

Sophie Bourgois is able to master highly complex disputes and is technically excellent. Sophie is extremely competent, smart, thorough, well organised and a quick-thinker‘.

Key clients

National Bank of Belgium

Ǿrsted Wind Power

Perrigo

Providence Equity Partners

Suez

The Royal Belgian Football Association

Environment Tier 1

Led by Jan Bouckaert, Stibbe's team handles a broad range of environmental and planning matters for clients such as government agencies and companies operating in the energy and real estate sectors, among others. Recent highlights included France Maussion and counsel Olivier Di Giacomo advising the Brussels Environment Agency on the planned rehabilitation of the former Boitsfort racecourse in Brussels, including the town planning aspects of the project. Nuclear law, waste management, soil pollution and permitting matters are the group's other areas of expertise. At senior associate level, Guan Schaiko and Bastiaan Schelstraete are names to note. Counsel Pieter Vandenheede has left the firm.

Practice head(s):

Jan Bouckaert

Other key lawyers:

France Maussion; Olivier Di Giacomo; Guan Schaiko; Bastiaan Schelstraete

Key clients

Air Liquide

Aldi

BASF

Be Real Estate

Befimmo

Belgian Farmers Union (Boerenbond)

BNP Paribas Fortis

BVI.be

Codic

DC Industrial

Ertzberg

Fost Plus

Immobel

Matexi

Proximus

Prowinko

Fraud and white-collar crime Tier 1

Stibbe's experience ranges from corporate crime and money laundering to economic or tax fraud, as well as market manipulation. 'Top-notch' practice head Hans Van Bavel is 'outstanding on all levels', and leads a team recognised for providing 'sufficient balance between legal aspects and practical issues'. Van Bavel continues to act for the KBVB, which filed a civil party claim against players and teams from the Jupiler Pro League in the recent domestic football scandal. David Verwaerde is another key name, while associate Charlotte Conings also attracts praise for her 'knowledge and specialisation in cybercrime issues'.

Practice head(s):

Hans Van Bavel

Other key lawyers:

David Verwaede; Charlotte Coning

Testimonials

Hans Van Bavel is, in two words, top-notch, surrounded by a dedicated team. Legal analysis is always spot-on, with sufficient balance between the legal aspects and practical issues as to the client’s business. A true delight to work with.

Hans Van Bavel is outstanding on all levels, and thus more than correctly looked at as number one in Belgium. Charlotte Conings’ knowledge and specialisation in cybercrime issues is also noteworthy.

Key clients

Bank Degroof Petercam

CBC Banque

Fortis

George Economou

KBC

KBVB (Royal Belgian Football Association)

Microsoft

Neremat

Proximus

PV Force

Stephan Colle

Suez

Vinci Autoroutes

Industry focus: Food Tier 1

Stibbe's broad cross-departmental team handles food and beverages advisory work as well as offering significant experience in contentious matters to clients including AB InBev, The Belgian Chocolate Group and Valorfrit. Alongside practice head Jan Bouckaert, the main players are regulatory expert Ignace Vernimme and Peter Wytinck, who specialises in competition cases. Ongoing matters include handling product manufacturing disputes and drafting distribution agreements, while IP specialist Philippe Campolini is currently acting for Belgian Shell during proceedings concerning an alleged in-store infringement of EU and Benelux-registered deli trade marks.

Practice head(s):

Jan Bouckaert

Other key lawyers:

Ignace Vernimme; Peter Wytinck; Phillippe Campolini

Key clients

AB InBev

Alpro

Barry Callebaut

Belgian breweries (Abbey of Grimbergen, Haacht, Palm, Bosteels)

Belgian Chocolate Group

Come a Casa

Culinor Group

Délifrance

Dosche Mills

Ferrero

Fevia

Greenyard

Lactalis Benelux

Nestlé Waters

Sip-well

Valorfrit

Vandemoortele

Industry focus: IT and telecoms Tier 1

Stibbe's 'strongly driven' multidisciplinary technology, media and communications team provides 'valuable practical guidance based on deep legal knowledge', advising on strategic IT and telecoms projects, ranging from big data and cloud computing to AI schemes and data retention legislation. Led by Erik Valgaeren, who clients note is 'an excellent lawyer and expert in the field of IT contracts and projects', practice also has expertise in internet and electronic communications law, handling ongoing matters for Microsoft, Verizon and the Flemish government.

Practice head(s):

Erik Valgaeren

Testimonials

Erik Valgaeren and his team are highly qualified to advise companies in the field of IT projects and contracting. They have excellent knowledge of the subject matter and of challenges faced by companies when entering into IT contracts.

Erik Valgaeren is an excellent lawyer and expert in the field of IT contracts and projects. He is a very valuable specialised support for our company.’

Very flexible. Good knowledge. Strongly driven.’

They provide valuable practical guidance based on deep legal knowledge and practical implementation.’

Key clients

AB Inbev

Athora

Bank Degroof Petercam

Barry Callebaut

BICS

CapGemini

Combell

Dematic

Google

Havenbedrijf Antwerpen

Informatie Vlaanderen

Kangaroot

KevlinX

Lycamobile

Microsoft

Norkring

OVB (Orde van Vlaamse Balies)

PIDPA

Port of Antwerp

PriceWaterhouseCoopers

Proximus

SCR Sibelco

Storm

Suez

Thales

Uniface

Verizon

Vlaio

ZTE

Intellectual property Tier 1

In September 2019, Stibbe made a significant investment in its IP litigation offering by hiring Philippe Campolini from Simont Braun. Litigation is the main area of focus for the firm's IP practice overall, particularly in the pharma, biotech, nanotech and medical devices sectors. Beyond patent litigation, other contentious work covers trade marks, trade secrets and copyright. The firm is also instructed in non-contentious mandates, such as IP structuring and technology transfer. Campolini co-heads the team with Ignace Vernimme, who worked with associate Adélaïde Lonnoy to advise Punch Powertrain NV (an independent full system supplier of fuel-efficient powertrains) on IP issues associated with its first joint venture with Peugeot SA Groupe in France. Of counsel Manuel Campolini is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Ignace Vernimme; Philippe Campolini

Other key lawyers:

Manuel Campolini; Adélaïde Lonnoy

Testimonials

‘Ignace Vernimme always finds a way out and has a fresh view of matters. His experience in legal and business matters is incredible. ’

‘The team is one of the leading in Belgium, with in-depth knowledge of the life sciences industry. Lawyers are available and nice to work with. They know how to explain complex situations in simple terms.’

‘Ignace Vernimme, head of practice, is a prominent figure in the Belgian market. Philippe Campolini is a great addition to the resources of the team, and brings a better generational balance.’

‘Smart, forward-thinking and commercial. Combines experience with context to deliver great outcomes.’

‘Ignace Vernimme sees the bigger picture and commands a strong team. Has a knack for knowing when to step in. Thinks on his feet.’

‘The strength of this team is to combine all the different aspects of IP with a particular focus on patents notably in the field of pharmaceutical products. They have a down-to-earth and business-oriented approach, and good reactivity.’

‘The reputation of Stibbe in IP is important in the Belgium market, where there are mainly independent law firms. Working with people able to work with a network of litigators across Europe is important. Stibbe is able to do so efficiently. Philippe Campolini joined the firm to strengthen the patent litigation practice. Always available, he is ready to assist and to provide the relevant recommendation and strategic decision to the clients.’

‘Very commercially-minded, open for dialogue, constructive collaboration, responsive.’

Key clients

Accord Healthcare

Amphenol Socapex

ANMI (Advanced Nuclear Medicine Ingredients)

ArcelorMittal

Arne Quinze

Belgian Shell

Belgian State

Belmoca

Biostrand/Biokey

Corden Pharma

CSL Behring

Ferrero

Graf Synergy

Hasbro

Iddink

Morris Comics (Lucky Luke)

Mylan

Nementschek SE (MCS)

ORA (Optimized Radiochemical Applications)

Orbix

Out & Out

Perrigo

Phi Group

Providence

Punch Powertrain

R.G.C.C. Holdings

Snow Service

Teoxane

Teva

The Belgian Chocolate Group

The Grimbergen Abbey (Grimbergen beer)

Toxikon

UZ Leuven

Value Plus (Hudson)

Vandemoortele

Real estate and construction Tier 1

In the words of a client, Stibbe's real estate and construction practice 'covers the full range of expertise required in this field and is comprised of highly skilled, well-known and established experts and upcoming talents'. The 'fast, pragmatic, sharp and deal-oriented' team leverages the expertise of the corporate, banking and public law departments to provide a multidisciplinary service to clients. Key areas of expertise for the group include high-profile financings, transactions and PPP projects. Matthias Maselis, Rudy Nauwelaerts and Rony Vermeersch are the joint heads of the practice, in which senior associate Anneleen Quirynen is a name to note.

Practice head(s):

Rudy Nauwelaerts; Rony Vermeersch; Matthias Maselis

Other key lawyers:

Anneleen Quirynen

Testimonials

Stibbe acts as a one-stop-shop for its clients‘.

Matthias Maselis is everything what you would like to see in a business lawyer: available, to the point, pragmatic and deal driven‘.

Dedicated and flexible. They keep things simple even when they are not. They provide practical solutions that take into account the human aspects and foster good relations between the parties‘.

The real estate and construction practice of Stibbe is characterised by an in-depth knowledge of a wide range of legal issues concerning real estate in general and the public sector‘.

Matthias Maselis masters the art of making the deal happen, even in the most challenging circumstances. He really makes the difference at the negotiation table‘.

Key clients

Aedifica

BNP Paribas Fortis

Ghelamco

Tribeca Capital Partners

Immobel

Banimmo

Cofinimmo

Mercedes-Benz

Banking, finance and capital markets Tier 2

Stibbe's practice is led by Wouter Ghijsels, who is 'a hands-on lawyer with a good understanding of the business'. The 'pragmatic' team reports an uptick in direct lending mandates and financial restructuring matters, and has also been kept busy in the capital markets space handling instructions from biotech and REIT entities. Jan Peeters and Pascal Vanden Borre are recommended for their expertise in IPOs and other equity capital markets matters. Senior associate Pieter Nobels is experienced in debt capital markets matters, as well as real estate finance and acquisition finance transactions.

Practice head(s):

Wouter Ghijsels

Other key lawyers:

Jan Peeters; Pascal Vanden Borre; Pieter Nobels

Testimonials

Good value for money for corporate financings‘.

Pieter Nobels – legal expert, able to reply instantly and to the point‘.

Rational, straightforward, out of the box thinking‘.

Key clients

Apax Partners

Aquafin

Belfius Bank

BNP Paribas Fortis

Centerbridge Partners

CVC Credit Partners

ING Group

Kartesia

KBC Bank

Mercedes Benz Financial Services

Panasonic Healthcare

Proximus Group

PSA Finance

Société Générale

Union Bank

Commercial, corporate and M&A Tier 2

Stibbe undertakes domestic and cross-border corporate transactions for clients such as private equity and venture capital firms, financial institutions, multinational corporates and listed Belgian companies. The firm is one of the most active in Belgium for M&A and it is also sought out for advice on corporate restructurings, joint ventures, foreign direct investments, corporate governance and corporate finance transactions. In 2019, Jan Peeters advised Kinepolis on the acquisitions of US cinema chain MJR Digital and Netherlands-based company Arcaplex Spijkenisse BV. The team, which is led by Stefan Odeurs, also includes Dries HommezPascal Vanden Borre and Jan Bogaert.

Practice head(s):

Stefan Odeurs

Other key lawyers:

Jan Peeters; Pascal Vanden Borre; Dries Hommez; Marc Fyon; Jan Bogaert; Julien Bogaerts

Testimonials

They are quick and very efficient.

Availability and deep industry knowledge combined with a strong commercial approach, would typically describe a project team at Stibbe. Well-balanced across associates and partners. Other firms are more top-heavy. At Stibbe, I feel associates are strong enough to contribute and challenge, but have enough IQ and EQ to understand when to bring in partner support.

Key clients

Alibaba Group

Brazilian controlling shareholders of AB InBev

CapitalG

Clayton, Dublier & Rice

DWS

GIMV

International Finance Corporation

Kinepolis Group

KKR

Lagardère Travel Retail

McKinsey

Monument Re, Bermuda-based reinsurer

Providence Equity LLP

Punch Powertrain

Sofindev

Employment Tier 2

Stibbe's practice is jointly led by Elisabeth Matthys and the 'excellent' Jérôme Aubertin. The team provides ongoing advice to Sports Vlaanderen on implementing codes of conduct for handling claims of sexual harassment. Other areas of expertise include restructurings, individual and collective dismissals, and pensions cases. Dieter Demuynck and the 'outstanding' Jan Proesmans, who are both counsels, are also names to note.

Practice head(s):

Elisabeth Matthys; Jérôme Aubertin

Other key lawyers:

Dieter Demuynck; Jan Proesmans

Testimonials

The team is very detailed and accurate.

Jan Proesmans has a deep understanding both of the employment laws as well as the individual matters he handles for the client’.

Excellent advisers.

Key clients

Swissport Cargo Services Belgium

Cargill

Bridgestone Europe

Cheops

Fintech Tier 2

At Stibbe, Erik Valgaeren leads a team that prides itself on financial regulatory framework know-how and regularly advises outsourcing, cloud, AI, payment services and new digital platform start-up projects. A recent work highlight involved assisting the Nornickel Group, which contemplated building a blockchain platform to facilitate the digitisation and tokenisation of its precious metal commodities using tokens. Jan Peeters and Hans Van Bavel are the other key names of note, while senior associate Simon Landuyt's arrival from DLA Piper earlier in 2020 is also a significant boost to the practice offering.

Practice head(s):

Erik Valgaeren

Other key lawyers:

Simon Landuyt; Jan Peeters; Hans Van Bavel

Key clients

Credendo

Belgian National Bank

Isabel

Bank Degroof Petercam

Belfius

Bank of America

Transcosmos Inc.

Industry focus: Energy Tier 2

At Stibbe, the energy department splits its time between M&A, project financing and new developments, and litigation. Practice head Frederik Vandendriessche additionally focuses on regulatory mandates, while real estate lawyer Rony Vermeersch advises on renewable energy projects and contracts. Senior associate Cedric Degreef is also noted for commercial and regulatory matters, with a particular specialism in electricity, natural gas and geothermal sourcing. Clients note that Vandendriessche and Degreef offer a 'unique combination of public procurement, public and energy law backgrounds, with strong contract drafting skills'.

Practice head(s):

Frederik Vandendriessche

Other key lawyers:

Romy Vermeersch; Cedric Degreef

Testimonials

‘Frederik Vandendriessche and Cedric Degreef offer the unique combination of public procurement, public and energy law backgrounds, with strong contract drafting skills. Moreover, thanks to their long involvement in the energy world, they have the capacity to make strong risk assessments. That makes them the ideal partners.’

‘Good industry knowledge.’

Key clients

Apetra

Arcelor Mittal Energy

BNP Paribas Fortis

Centrica

CGNEE

Direct Energie

DNB BA

EDF Luminus

European Federation of Energy Traders (EFET)

Elia System Operator

ENGIE Fabricom

Fluxys

Hita

I4B (the Belgian Infrastructure Fund)

Ikaros Solar

Leo Group

LRM (incl. Floating PV and Terhills)

Norther

Storm Management

Tractebel Engineering

Zenobe

Industry focus: Healthcare and life sciences Tier 2

At Stibbe, the IP and life sciences practice is 'smart, forward-thinking and commercially minded', to the benefit of its pharmaceuticals, medical device and healthcare company clients. Headed by Ignace Vernimme, who 'sees the bigger picture and commands a strong team' alongside the 'very responsive' Philippe Campolini, it leverages a full-service approach to provide advice on regulatory and contentious matters spanning corporate, employment, public and competition law, among others. Medicinal products expert Vernimme and patent litigator Campolini are supported by of counsel Manuel Campolini to complete the core team.

Practice head(s):

Ignace Vernimme; Philippe Campolini

Other key lawyers:

Manuel Campolini

Testimonials

Smart, forward-thinking and commercially minded. Combines experience with context to deliver great outcomes.’

Ignace Vernimme sees the bigger picture and commands a strong team. He has a knack for knowing when to step in and thinks on his feet.’

High level of availability, very professional, fast answers, good communication, and listen to the customer.’

‘Philippe Campolini offers clear communication, availability and engagement. He stands out for his quality of work and efficiency.’

Philippe Campolini from Stibbe is very responsive and works well with our other European attorneys to support our overall strategy while fine-tuning the arguments to the vagaries of the Belgian legal system.’

Great competence and expertise, with fantastic creative thinking and a forward-looking approach, which is essential in the pharma sector. The fact that they have a wide variety of clients makes them open minded and increases their level of expertise.’

Key clients

Accord Healthcare

ANMI (Advanced Nuclear Medicine Ingredients)

Celltrion

Corden Pharma

CSL Behring

Getinge

Mundipharma

Mylan

ORA (Optimized Radiochemical Application)

Perrigo (Omega Pharma)

R.G.C.C. Holdings

Teva

Toxikon

UZ Leuven

Industry focus: Media and entertainment Tier 2

Stibbe's technology, media and communications team benefits from a firm-wide multidisciplinary approach, allowing an impressive range of coverage throughout the technology and digital sectors. At its helm, Erik Valgaeren works across the TMT space, assisting well-known clients including Microsoft, BuzzFeed and Spotify with regulatory, compliance and contractual issues, while sports law specialist Elisabeth Matthys and IP expert Ignace Vernimme are further key contacts. The practice has a newly expanded offering in gamification software advice, and is also experienced in appearing before the administrative tribunals and in all alternative dispute resolution channels.

Practice head(s):

Erik Valgaeren

Other key lawyers:

Elisabeth Matthys; Ignace Vernimme

Key clients

Belgian Football Association

BuzzFeed

Capgemini

Captains of Cycling

Flemish Sports Federation

Global Intergold

Golazo Sports

Kinepolis

Microsoft

Morris Comics

National Lottery

Norkring

Proximus

RTL

Spotify

StriveCloud

Vlaamse Sportfederatie

Warner Media

Zodiak

ZTE

Industry focus: Retail Tier 2

Full-service firm Stibbe provides all-round advice to its retail and consumer goods clients on distribution issues, IP law, consumer protection, unfair trade practices, product regulations and recalls, along with advertising compliance and contract drafting. Practice head Peter Wytinck is the main contact for both contentious and regulatory work.

Practice head(s):

Peter Wytinck

Insolvency and restructuring Tier 2

Clients describe Stibbe as 'leaders at what they do', with further praise for the 'commercial and pragmatic solutions' on offer from Oliver Stevens and Paul Van der Putten's team, which fields experts from the separate corporate, restructuring, labour and tax practices. Work typically includes advising banks and leasing companies during periods of financial distress. Counsel Pieter Wouters 'punches above his weight on cross-border matters' and 'understands the bigger picture', often when handling litigation. All named lawyers are also instructed as liquidators in domestic dissolutions.

Practice head(s):

Paul Van der Putten; Oliver Stevens

Other key lawyers:

Pieter Wouters

Testimonials

‘Leaders at what they do and very well connected. Exceptional knowledge of the system. Very professional.’

Exceptionally approachable and knowledgeable, very easy to communicate with, even for someone who has zero legal background.’

The team is excellent. Sharp legal advice combined with a deep commercial understanding. Hands-on and to-the-point.’

‘Pieter Wouters is an excellent lawyer. He always has the big picture in mind and gives to-the-point legal advice.

They do not work superficially, but render quality work and can think together with youVery responsive and reliable, they rightly challenge their clients and their ideas and strategies to ensure all possible options and consequences are understood. They give clear and honest advice, and are not shy about telling the client the truth, even if truth may not be what the client likes to hear.’

Paul van der Putten is very experienced. He advises on overall strategy, understands the bigger picture and gives clear and honest advice.’

Pieter Wouters is very dedicated and reliable, delivers impressive work and is extremely responsive. He thinks ahead and points out potential pitfalls, considering and taking care of every aspect of a case.’

‘The team at Stibbe is incredibly efficient in dealing with client queries. Their commercial and pragmatic solutions really stand outPieter Wouters is a superb lawyer who punches above his weight on cross-border matters. His ability to deal with complex legal issues is exceptional.’

Key clients

Belgian State

Berivo

Brussels Airport Company

Creafund

Eisenmann

Elavon Financial Services

Flamant Acquisition

Flemish Government

Group D’Aucy

Immpact Vastgoed

KBC

Medec Benelux

National Bank of Belgium

Nortel

SolarRise

Swissport

UK Administrators of Nortel Networks

Uniper

Vitare

Insurance Tier 2

Stibbe's multi-disciplinary offering benefits from 'a lot of expertise' in life and non-life, property and group insurance matters, as well as in strategic reinsurance advice. Department head and disputes specialist Oliver Stevens is 'very experienced and knows how to deal with large companies', while clients also recognise associate Sophie Bourgois as 'a strong professional delivering high-quality work', particularly in relation to major property, liability and credit losses. Corporate experts Jan Peeters and Pascal Vanden Borre extend the practice's scope to cover acquisitions, insurer and reinsurer sales, and portfolio transfers.

Practice head(s):

Oliver Stevens

Other key lawyers:

Jan Peeters; Pascal Vanden Borre; Sophie Bourgois

Testimonials

‘Multi-disciplinary practice, a lot of expertise and experience.’

‘Oliver Stevens is very experienced and knows how to deal with large insurance companies.’

‘Strong, in-depth knowledge, no neglect of details and an open view of the interpretation of different options when appropriate.’

‘Sophie Bourgois is a strong professional delivering high-quality work. This is then supervised by Oliver Stevens, who is highly qualified and experienced, leading to a high-standard end product.’

Key clients

AGB Kunsten & Design

Antwerp Port Authority

Athora

AXA Belgium

Belfius Bank

BNP Paribas Fortis

Brussels Airport Company

Credendo

De Goudse

Delta Lloyd

Dexia

Emerisque Cavaliere

Flemish Government

Generali

ING

Irish Life plc

KBC Group

KBC Verzekeringen

Monument RE

MS Amlin

P&V Verzekeringen

Vivium

Private equity Tier 2

Stibbe has a strong track record handling private equity and venture capital buyout transactions for domestic and international clients. It also excels in the structuring and formation of funds, as well as debt and equity-side investments and incentive arrangements. Stefan Odeurs heads up the practice, which sees multiple departments work together, including corporate and M&A, banking and finance, EU competition and IP. Odeurs and Jan Peeters worked with the tax team to advise Sofindev IV on the structuring of Sofindev V (which raised €170m in capital commitments) and they also acted for Sofindev V on the acquisition of a 50% stake in IT company Chistiaens NV. Also notable is that Dries Hommez led a group which advised Apax Partners SAS on the acquisition of the parent company of Destiny NV from Mentha Capital BV.

Practice head(s):

Stefan Odeurs

Other key lawyers:

Dries Hommez; Jan Peeters

Testimonials

‘Strong experienced M&A team. Very pragmatic and solution-oriented approach.’

‘Stefan Odeurs: very pragmatic and solution-oriented person. Vast experience in M&A. Very good understanding of deal structuring and financial valuation parameters. Non-aggressive style and very apt in non-plain vanilla transactions. Dries Hommez: vast experience of private equity M&A. Excellent deal-making skills.’

Key clients

Apax Partners

Avista Capital Holdings

HLD Europe

CapitalG

Capvis

Creafund

Dovesco

Fin.Co

Gilde Equity Management

Gimv

KKR

Providence Equity LLP

Smile Invest

Sofindev

Naxicap

Vista investors

Tax Tier 3

Stibbe's 'highly professional, responsive, and dedicated' tax team is led by VAT expert Wim Panis, who is 'business- and solution-oriented'. The group has been notably active recently advising on the tax aspects of high-profile M&A and private equity transactions, as well as handling transfer pricing matters. Panis is well regarded for his expertise in Belgian REITs and real estate investment funds. Henk Verstraete is well-versed in tax litigation. Counsel Giovanni Smet 'stands out for his knowledge with respect to movable withholding tax'. Senior associate Lizelotte De Maeyer is also recommended. Thierry Denayer retired from practice in February 2020.

Practice head(s):

Wim Panis

Other key lawyers:

Henk Verstraete; Giovanni Smet; Lizelotte De Maeyer

Key clients

Accor

Sofindev

Droia

Vertellus

Belfius

From its main offices in Amsterdam, Brussels and Luxembourg, together with branch offices in London and New York, Stibbe handles complex legal challenges both locally and cross-border. By understanding the commercial objectives of clients, their position in the market and their sector or industry, Stibbe can render suitable and effective advice. From an international perspective, Stibbe works closely with other top-tier firms on cross-border matters in various jurisdictions. These relationships are non-exclusive enabling Stibbe to assemble tailor-made integrated teams of lawyers with the best expertise and contacts for each specific project. This guarantees efficient coordination on cross-border transactions throughout a multitude of legal areas, irrespective of their nature and complexity.

Department Name Email Telephone
Banking and Finance Wouter Ghijsels wouter.ghijsels@stibbe.com +32 2 533 54 73
Banking and Finance Marc Fyon marc.fyon@stibbe.com +32 2 533 53 25
Corporate and M&A Marc Fyon marc.fyon@stibbe.com
Corporate and M&A Jan Bogaert jan.bogaert@stibbe.com
Corporate and M&A Dries Hommez dries.hommez@stibbe.com
Corporate and M&A Pascal Vanden Borre pascal.vandenborre@stibbe.com
Corporate and M&A Stefan Odeurs stefan.odeurs@stibbe.com
Corporate and M&A Julien Bogaerts julien.bogaerts@stibbe.com
Commercial, corporate and M&A Jan Peeters jan.peeters@stibbe.com
Competition Peter Wytinck peter.wytinck@stibbe.com
Dispute resolution and arbitration Nicolas Résimont nicolas.resimont@stibbe.com
Dispute resolution and arbitration Oliver Stevens oliver.stevens@stibbe.com
Environment Jan Bouckaert jan.bouckaert@stibbe.com
Environment France Maussion france.maussion@stibbe.com
Fraud and white-collar crime Hans Van Bavel hans.vanbavel@stibbe.com
Healthcare and life sciences Ignace Vernimme ignace.vernimme@stibbe.com
Insolvency and restructuring Paul Van der Putten paul.vanderputten@stibbe.com
Insolvency and restructuring Dries Hommez dries.hommez@stibbe.com
Insolvency and restructuring Stefan Odeurs stefan.odeurs@stibbe.com
Insolvency and restructuring Jan Peeters jan.peeters@stibbe.com
Insolvency and restructuring Oliver Stevens oliver.stevens@stibbe.com
Insolvency and restructuring Pieter Wouters pieter.wouters@stibbe.com
Intellectual property Ignace Vernimme ignace.vernimme@stibbe.com
Employment and Benefits Jérôme Aubertin jerome.aubertin@stibbe.com
Employment and Benefits Elisabeth Matthys elisabeth.matthys@stibbe.com
Private equity Stefan Odeurs stefan.odeurs@stibbe.com
Private equity Dries Hommez dries.hommez@stibbe.com
Public Law David D'Hooghe david.dhooghe@stibbe.com
Public Law Bruno Lombaert bruno.lombaert@stibbe.com
Public Law Frederik Vandendriessche frederik.vandendriessche@stibbe.com
Public Law Nathanaelle Kiekens nathanaelle.kiekens@stibbe.com
Real estate and Construction Rony Vermeersch rony.vermeersch@stibbe.com
Real Estate and Construction Dries Hommez dries.hommez@stibbe.com
Real Estate and Construction France Maussion france.maussion@stibbe.com
Real Estate and Construction Nicoals Résimont nicolas.resimont@stibbe.com
Real estate and Construction Rudy Nauwelaerts rudy.nauwelaerts@stibbe.com
Tax Henk Verstraete henk.verstraete@stibbe.com
Tax Wim Panis wim.panis@stibbe.com
Sports Elisabeth Matthys elisabeth.matthys@stibbe.com
TMT , IT and data protection Erik Valgaeren erik.valgaeren@stibbe.com
Capital markets Pascal Vanden Borre pascal.vandenborre@stibbe.com
Capital markets Dries Hommez dries.hommez@stibbe.com
Capital markets Stefan Odeurs stefan.odeurs@stibbe.com
Capital markets Jan Peeters jan.peeters@stibbe.com
Construction Rony Vermeersch rony.vermeersch@stibbe.com
Commercial, Corporate and M&A Julien Bogaerts julien.bogaerts@stibbe.com
Tax Henk Verstraete henk.verstraete@stibbe.com
Compliance and Sanctions Hans Van Bavel hans.vanbavel@stibbe.com
Compliance and Sanctions Peter Wytinck peter.wytinck@stibbe.com
Corporate Fraud and Criminal Law Hans Van Bavel hans.vanbavel@stibbe.com
Corporate Investigations Nicolas Résimont nicolas.resimont@stibbe.com
Corporate Investigations Hans Van Bavel hans.vanbavel@stibbe.com
Data Protection Erik Valgaeren erik.valgaeren@stibbe.com
Environment and Planning Jan Bouckaert jan.bouckaert@stibbe.com
Environment and Planning France Maussion france.maussion@stibbe.com
EU Law, Competition and Regulation Peter Wytinck peter.wytinck@stibbe.com
Foreign Investments Jan Bogaert jan.bogaert@stibbe.com
Foreign Investments Stefan Odeurs stefan.odeurs@stibbe.co
Information Technology Erik Valgaeren erik.valgaeren@stibbe.com
Insurance and Reinsurance Stefan Odeurs stefan.odeurs@stibbe.com
Insurance and Reinsurance Jan Peeters jan.peeters@stibbe.com
Insurance and Reinsurance Oliver Stevens oliver.stevens@stibbe.com
Insurance and Reinsurance Paul Van der Putten paul.vanderputten@stibbe.com
Intellectual Property Ignace Vernimme ignace.vernimme@stibbe.com
Investment Management Dries Hommez dries.hommez@stibbe.com
Investment Management Stefan Odeurs stefan.odeurs@stibbe.com
Investment Management Jan Peeters jan.peeters@stibbe.com
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Nicolas Résimont nicolas.resimont@stibbe.com
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Oliver Stevens oliver.stevens@stibbe.com
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Hans Van Bavel hans.vanbavel@stibbe.com
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Paul Van der Putten paul.vanderputten@stibbe.com
Pensions Jérôme Aubertin jerome.aubertin@stibbe.com
Pensions David D'Hooghe david.dhooghe@stibbe.com
Pensions Bruno Lombaert bruno.lombaert@stibbe.com
Pensions Frederik Vandendriessche frederik.vandendriessche@stibbe.com
Procurement Law David D'Hooghe david.dhooghe@stibbe.com
Procurement Law Nathanaëlle Kiekens nathanaelle.kiekens@stibbe.com
Procurement Law Bruno Lombaert bruno.lombaert@stibbe.com
Procurement Law France Maussion france.maussion@stibbe.com
Procurement Law Frederik Vandendriessche frederik.vandendriessche@stibbe.com
Unfair Competition and Consumer Protection Peter Wytinck peter.wytinck@stibbe.com
White Collar Crime Hans Van Bavel hans.vanbavel@stibbe.com
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Nicolas Résimont nicolas.resimont@stibbe.com
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Oliver Stevens oliver.stevens@stibbe.com
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Hans Van Bavel hans.vanbavel@stibbe.com
Litigation and Dispute Resolution Paul Van der Putten paul.vanderputten@stibbe.com
Energy & Natural Resources Frederik Vandendriessche frederik.vandendriessche@stibbe.com
Investment Funds Jan Bogaert jan.bogaert@stibbe.com
Investment Funds Wouter Ghijsels wouter.ghijsels@stibbe.com
Investment Funds Dries Hommez dries.hommez@stibbe.com
Investment Funds Jan Peeters jan.peeters@stibbe.com
Private Equity Wouter Ghijsels wouter.ghijsels@stibbe.com
Private Equity Dries Hommez dries.hommez@stibbe.com
Private Equity Stefan Odeurs stefan.odeurs@stibbe.com
Private Equity Jan Peeters jan.peeters@stibbe.com
Private Equity Pascal Vanden Borre pascal.vandenborre@stibbe.com
TMT Erik Valgaeren erik.valgaeren@stibbe.com
Insolvency and Restructuring Dries Hommez dries.hommez@stibbe.com
Insolvency and Restructuring Stefan Odeurs stefan.odeurs@stibbe.com
Insolvency and Restructuring Jan Peeters jan.peeters@stibbe.com
Insolvency and Restructuring Oliver Stevens oliver.stevens@stibbe.com
Insolvency and Restructuring Paul Van der Putten paul.vanderputten@stibbe.com
Projects Jan Bouckaert jan.bouckaert@stibbe.com
Projects David D'Hooghe david.dhooghe@stibbe.com
Projects Nathanaelle Kiekens nathanaelle.kiekens@stibbe.com
Projects Bruno Lombaert bruno.lombaert@stibbe.com
Projects Rudy Nauwelaerts rudy.nauwelaerts@stibbe.com
Projects Nicolas Résimont nicolas.resimont@stibbe.com
Projects Frederik Vandendriessche frederik.vandendriessche@stibbe.com
Intellectual property Philippe Campolini philippe.campolini@stibbe.com
Healthcare and Life Sciences Philippe Campolini philippe.campolini@stibbe.com
Real Estate and Construction Matthias Maselis matthias.maselis@stibbe.com
Projects Matthias Maselis matthias.maselis@stibbe.com
Competition Sophie Van Besien sophie.vanbesien@stibbe.com
Compliance and Sanctions Sophie Van Besien sophie.vanbesien@stibbe.com
EU Law, Competition and Regulation Sophie Van Besien sophie.vanbesien@stibbe.com
Unfair Competition and Consumer Protection Sophie Van Besien sophie.vanbesien@stibbe.com
Photo Name Position Profile
Mr Ian Arnouts  photo Mr Ian Arnouts Counsel
Mr Jérôme Aubertin photo Mr Jérôme Aubertin Partner.
Mr Jan Bogaert  photo Mr Jan Bogaert Partner  
Mr Julien Bogaerts  photo Mr Julien Bogaerts Partner
Mr Jan Bouckaert  photo Mr Jan Bouckaert Partner.
Ms Sophie Bourgois photo Ms Sophie Bourgois Counsel
Mr Philippe Campolini photo Mr Philippe Campolini Partner
Mr Manuel Campolini  photo Mr Manuel Campolini Of Counsel
Ms Leen De Vuyst  photo Ms Leen De Vuyst Counsel  
Mr Dieter Demuynck  photo Mr Dieter Demuynck Counsel
Mr Olivier Di Giacomo  photo Mr Olivier Di Giacomo Counsel
Mr David D’Hooghe  photo Mr David D’Hooghe Partner.
Mr Marc Fyon  photo Mr Marc Fyon Partner
Mr Wouter Ghijsels  photo Mr Wouter Ghijsels Partner.
Ms Delphine Gillet photo Ms Delphine Gillet Counsel
Mr Dries Hommez  photo Mr Dries Hommez Partner.
Ms Nathanaelle Kiekens  photo Ms Nathanaelle Kiekens Partner
Mr Benoît Kohl  photo Mr Benoît Kohl Of Counsel
Mr Sebastien Leroy  photo Mr Sebastien Leroy Counsel
Mr Bruno Lombaert  photo Mr Bruno Lombaert Partner
Mr Matthias Maselis photo Mr Matthias Maselis Partner
Ms Irene Mathy  photo Ms Irene Mathy Counsel
Ms Elisabeth Matthys  photo Ms Elisabeth Matthys Partner.
Ms France Maussion  photo Ms France Maussion Partner
Mr Rudy Nauwelaerts  photo Mr Rudy Nauwelaerts Partner.
Mr Stefan Odeurs  photo Mr Stefan Odeurs Partner.
Mr Wim Panis  photo Mr Wim Panis Partner 
Mr Jan Peeters  photo Mr Jan Peeters Partner
Mr Jan Proesmans photo Mr Jan Proesmans Counsel
Mr Nicolas Résimont photo Mr Nicolas Résimont Partner
Mr Tom Ruys  photo Mr Tom Ruys Of Counsel
Mr Giovanni Smet  photo Mr Giovanni Smet Counsel
Mr Audry Stevenart  photo Mr Audry Stevenart Senior Counsel
Mr Oliver Stevens  photo Mr Oliver Stevens Partner
Mr Erik Valgaeren  photo Mr Erik Valgaeren Partner
Mr Hans Van Bavel  photo Mr Hans Van Bavel Partner
Ms Sophie Van Besien  photo Ms Sophie Van Besien Partner
Mr Paul Van der Putten  photo Mr Paul Van der Putten Partner
Mr Pascal Vanden Borre  photo Mr Pascal Vanden Borre Partner
Mr Frederik Vandendriessche  photo Mr Frederik Vandendriessche Partner
Mr Rony Vermeersch  photo Mr Rony Vermeersch Partner
Mr Ignace Vernimme  photo Mr Ignace Vernimme Partner
Mr Henk Verstraete  photo Mr Henk Verstraete Partner
Mr Pieter Wouters  photo Mr Pieter Wouters Counsel
Mr Peter Wytinck  photo Mr Peter Wytinck Partner
Number of lawyers Benelux : 419 lawyers
at this office : 148 lawyers
Dutch
English
French
German
Luxembourgish
Contact : Wouter Ghijsels (managing partner)
Other offices : Amsterdam
Other offices : London
Other offices : Luxembourg
Other offices : New York

Corporate Social Responsibility

As a reputable, international law firm, we feel a strong sense of responsibility for the development of a more sustainable society. This is why we ensure that CSR remains an integral part of our firm and culture.

First and foremost, our CSR contribution to society is rooted in effective legal advice and relevant pro bono work. We use our knowledge and expertise to advise organisations that otherwise do not have access to high-quality legal advice. In doing so, we opt for the more complex legal issues with social relevance, or cases that set a legal precedent.

Furthermore, we believe that when people are able to develop to their full potential, this contributes to a better, safer, more diverse and prosperous society. Therefore, we enable young people to seize opportunities, pursue their dreams and ambitions, and overcome any obstacles that stand in the way of their personal growth. We do this by entering into partnerships with organisations that help children and young adults develop knowledge and skills they can use to build a good future. In addition, we work with institutions that enable young talent to develop to the highest level.

Diversity & Inclusion

The world around us is changing rapidly. A greater variety of skills is needed, both in society and in the workplace, to find solutions to increasingly complex problems. We must therefore look beyond cultural, financial, religious, political and regional boundaries and be able to work and live alongside people who are different from each other.

Diversity and inclusion have been high on Stibbe’s agenda for years. To provide our clients with high-quality legal advice, we need people who bring in different views, ideas and experiences. In addition to people’s qualities and skills, a diverse composition of teams in areas such as gender, sexual orientation, skin colour, cultural and socio-economic background, religion, disability and age is indispensable. An inclusive culture is essential so that everyone feels at home and can be themselves at Stibbe, and has the opportunity to develop to their full, unique potential.

Both in the legal sector and within our own firm there is still much to be gained in this area. To further embed diversity and inclusion in our culture, services and working methods, we set up activities and partnerships that focus on attracting, retaining and growing diverse talent and on working together in an inclusive way, both internally and externally. In addition, we support initiatives aimed at promoting diversity within our sector and in the business community as a whole, and we participate in social debate where necessary and relevant.

Stibbe is pleased to be one of the founding members of the Legal Diversity & Inclusion Alliance (LDIA), a collective effort by several law firms in Belgium. By joining the LDIA, member firms affirm their commitment to creating a diverse and inclusive work environment, exchanging good practices on diversity and inclusion, and raising awareness of non-discrimination and diversity issues by combining efforts in organising events, workshops, trainings, etc


Stibbe is an independent international law firm with deep roots in its three home jurisdictionsFrom our main offices in Amsterdam, Brussels and Luxembourg, together with our branch offices in London and New York, we handle our clients’ complex legal challenges both locally and cross-border. In addition to our own international presence, as an independent law firm, Stibbe can cooperate closely with other international top-tier firms. These relationships are non-exclusive and enable us to assemble a tailor-made, integrated team of lawyers with the best expertise and contacts for each specific matter.  

This top-tier network guarantees the best quality in each and every one of the jurisdictions with premium reputations in all of the business areas relevant for our clients. Our network enables us to connect you with the individual specialists our clients are looking for in almost all jurisdictions. When we do so, we will always see to it that we contact the individual lawyer we would be referring our client to, in order to ensure through a personal touch that they also provide the best client service. 

We exchange ideas and experiences with a number of preferred firms in our international network regarding new developments and trends in the legal sector and concerning the use of technology in the workplace. 

Wouter Ghijsels & David Orobio de Castro , Managing Partners Brussels and Amsterdam

Stibbe Managing Partners share insights on Benelux legal market.

What do you see as the main points that differentiate Stibbe from your competitors?

Stibbe is a full service independent Benelux law firm with main offices in Brussels, Amsterdam and Luxembourg and branch offices in London and New York.

Our independent position ensures that we always deliver the best services to our clients by teaming up with the referral partner within our extensive network who will be best placed to assess the specificities of the matter at stake in its jurisdiction.

In addition to outstanding legal experience, our multidisciplinary teams understand clients’ commercial objectives, their position in the market and their sector or industry, which allow us to render the most tailored and pragmatic advice possible. We maintain close business relationships with our clients, who count on us to deliver the hands-on, step-by-step advice they need on their most strategic operations.

Which practices do you see growing in the next 12 months? What are the drivers behind that?

The firm is growing as a whole, and the lateral hires and promotions of the past year across the Benelux are a testament to that. Overall, we have had an increasingly successful year across all practices.

Our Corporate and M&A practice benefited from the M&A market picking up in the third and fourth quarters of 2020. Other growing practices are Compliance and Sanctions, Environment (especially EU regulatory and health and safety regulations) , Energy (especially digital and green energy projects) and Real Estate (logistics and data centres, warehouses). We also see an increase in (Alternative) Dispute Resolution matters in the Benelux, with arbitration being particularly on the rise. Our top-tier Litigation and ADR teams have attracted a number of important disputes, some of which entail novel questions stemming from the COVID-19 crisis.

What’s the main change you’ve made in the firm that will benefit clients?

The already fast-paced digitalization of our offer has substantially evolved, allowing our clients and workforce to benefit from increasingly innovative solutions and initiatives. We had already been investing in adequate and robust IT infrastructure prior to the outbreak of the pandemic, which allowed both our lawyers and business services to seamlessly adapt to remote working overnight without any disruption in the delivery of our services to clients. Furthermore, we organize trainings in creative problem-solving and on efficient ways of channeling energy. Stibbe is also proud to support initiatives that foster diversity, which is why we were one of the founding members of the Legal Diversity and Inclusion Alliance. We believe that a diverse, inclusive, and supportive culture promotes creativity, innovation, and inspiration and these will contribute not only to the success professional career of our people, and, by consequence, to the success of our clients. That’s why we are taking concrete actions to turn innovation and inclusion from a skill-set into a mind-set for our people, and we believe that this will only add to the benefits that our clients can expect from Stibbe.

Is technology changing the way you interact with your clients, and the services you can provide them?

We already extensively used technology in our interaction with clients, and we continue to invest in the digitalization of our office and in solutions to automate our business operations further and better.

Our IT infrastructure and applications continually evolve and we continuously look for the best technologies in the market.

Stibbe has also heavily invested in cyber security measures over the past few years. Implementing a Managed Security services strategy allows us to focus on our core business and to keep a peace of mind when it comes to the tech environment through which we deliver our services.

Can you give us a practical example of how you have helped a client to add value to their business?

Building close business relationships with our clients, understanding their commercial objectives, their position in the market and their sector or industry, allows us to render suitable, effective and strategic advice.

Are clients looking for stability and strategic direction from their law firms – where do you see the firm in three years’ time?

As an independent Benelux law firm, we are able to provide our clients with high-end legal services. The goal of everything we do is to render the most beneficial and tailor-made advice to our clients. Thanks this approach and to our excellent relationships with leading international firms, we have increasingly been on the receiving end of big ticket cross-border mandates, which we reasonably expect to increase in the near future.