Firm Profile > Reff & Associates SCA > Bucharest, Romania

Reff & Associates SCA
THE MARK TOWER,
82-98 CALEA GRIVITEI,
DISTRICT 1, 010735
Romania

Real estate and construction Tier 1

The ‘excellent professionals’ at Reff & Associates SCA are ‘flexible, equitable and innovative in identifying solutions’. Practice head Irina Dimitriu and Alexandru Reff, who ‘stands out through his care for clients and commercial approach', advised IKEA on general contractor agreements for its new 67,065sqm store. The duo also acted for MAS Real Estate on the €95m acquisition, by way of a share deal, of the Militari shopping centre. The team covers a broad range of matters and is active in the office, retail, residential, logistics and agribusiness sectors.

Banking and finance Tier 2

Reff & Associates SCA's team is praised for its ‘knowledge and skills combined with flexibility and a win-win mentality’. It advises on all areas of transactional banking and has particular expertise with NPLs. Andrei Burz-Pinzaru heads the practice. Burz-Pinzaru and Alina Tihan recently assisted Green Oil and Lubes in relation to the structuring, negotiating and drafting of a secured financing agreement. A further highlight saw the team advise a bank on the winding down of its Romanian branch. Burz-Pinzaru and managing associate Andreea Serbanare very good professionals’ who adopt ‘a very human approach’.

Employment Tier 2

Florentina Munteanu heads the group at Reff & Associates SCA, which possesses specialist knowledge of the IT, pharmaceuticals, retail, automotive, transportation and real estate sectors. It is experienced in handling hires, dismissals and collective negotiations as well as employee leasing, stock option plans and employee transfers in the context of M&A transactions. Recent highlights also include advising on changes to employee tax legislation and work-from-home policies.

Commercial, corporate and M&A Tier 3

Reff & Associates SCA is well regarded for its work in the manufacturing, retail, health, energy and transportation industries. Its recent case load features a number of cross-border mandates including advising UK-listed investment fund Argo Group on the contemplated acquisition of the Romanian branch of Israel-based Leumi Bank. The practice is headed by Georgiana Singurel.

EU and competition Tier 3

Reff & Associates SCA's ‘dedicated’ and ‘very professional’ team is led by Florentina Munteanu, who recently provided state aid advice to the Ministry of Communication and Information Society in respect of a proposed share capital increase in Poșta Română. The team also handles merger clearances, compliance programmes and Competition Council investigations. Senior associate Oana Busca is praised for her ‘professional, focused’ approach and ‘in-depth’ understanding.

PPP and procurement Tier 3

Reff & Associates SCA is reputed for handling public sector projects and is assisting the Bucharest municipality with the tender procedure for work contracts for 12 public parking areas. The European Investment Bank – Jaspers (Joint Assistance in Supporting Projects in European Regions) receives advice on an intermodal terminals development project. Georgiana Singurel leads the practice.

TMT Tier 3

Reff & Associates SCA focuses on data protection and the recent caseload contains a number of GDPR-related instructions; high-profile names such as ING Bank, IKEA Romania and Superbet have sought the team’s expertise on the new regulation. Georgiana Singurel heads the practice, which is also adept at e-commerce and digital media, technology and outsourcing, electronic signature and software-related matters.

 

The firm

 

Reff & Associates is one of the largest Romanian law firms by headcount with over 70 lawyers, and is a member of the Deloitte Legal network, which counts more than 2,500 lawyers, in more than 83 countries. A full-scope business law firm, Reff & Associates assists large local and multinational investors, through high-quality legal services powered by a commercial and pragmatic approach to legal matters, leveraging the multidisciplinary expertise of Deloitte colleagues in areas such as tax, finance or business consulting. From assisting some of the largest transactions in Romania and CE region, to managing risk and compliance, to litigation, Reff & Associates handles projects in the range of hundreds of millions EUR every year.

 

Areas of practice

 

Corporate and commercial:

The team advises on the structuring and restructuring of investments, transfers of activity, mergers, de-mergers, joint ventures, including formation, corporate governance, minority rights and exit. In addition, the firm advices clients on various consumer and data protection aspects (including GDPR readiness), as well as other regulatory matters, such as environmental, food safety and IP.

 

Mergers and acquisitions:

The firm’s lawyers assist either the buy-side or the sell-side during the entire M&A cycle: MoU, due diligence and transaction structuring, drafting, negotiation and execution of the transaction documentation, transaction implementation and post-acquisition work.

 

Banking and finance:

The firm assists clients in loan finance, debt restructuring, securitization, workouts, NPL deals and transfers of performing loans portfolios. Having acted for both lenders and borrowers/ sponsors, the firm regularly works on structuring complex finance transactions, drafting and negotiating finance documents.

 

Capital markets:

The firm provides assistance to publicly traded companies, securities firms and investors, covering securities compliance (market manipulation and insider dealing issues included), listing requirements, corporate governance, shares/ rights prospectuses and assistance on stock option plans.

 

Real estate:

The firm assists with structuring of real estate transactions, transaction support, title verifications, title insurance, zoning and urban planning advice, compliance review, construction (including FIDIC based) assistance, acquisition, disposals and divestments, and has advised in most of the largest real estate deals in the country over the last five years).

 

Insolvency:

The firm advises both creditors and debtors in various insolvency matters, during pre-insolvency and actual insolvency procedure, from entitlement to opening the procedure, to structuring deals in insolvency procedure, to possibilities to close the insolvency, assessments of existing options, preservation of rights, defending against other parties’ claims or challenging their rights.

 

Competition:

Reff & Associates advises on a wide range of competition issues, including competition and antitrust compliance, investigations by the competition authority, analysis of distribution agreements, etc. the firm has a detailed understanding of law matters related to economic concentrations and provides representation in front of the Competition Council.

 

Employment:

The practice helps companies deal efficiently with labor law matters by providing customized contractual solutions, clear and effective internal regulations and compliant procedures in restructuring, compliance and litigation.

 

Energy:

The firm has acquired vast experience in providing legal services for large national and international projects in the energy sector, dealing both with all regulatory aspects and the related legal and commercial aspects of the respective contracts.

 

PPP and public procurement:

The team provides legal assistance to both public and private entities on a wide variety of public procurement, concession, PPP and EU funded projects. The firm has a vast experience gained through various complex assignments, including drafting the toolkit for applying the concession legislation in Romania, as well as preparation of a model concession agreement for InterModal Terminals under an European Investment Bank assignment.

 

Litigation:

The firm represents clients in general commercial, civil and employment litigation, including corporate disputes, recovery of debts, real estate litigation, settlements and forced execution. In tax litigations, the firm leverages the cooperation with Deloitte tax team, ensuring that all tax and legal issues are successfully covered.

 

Business criminal law:

The firm offers specialized services ranging from general consultancy, prevention and compliance in criminal law matters, to assistance during the criminal investigation or in front of courts of law.

 

Department Name Email Telephone
Banking and finance Andrei Burz-Pinzaru
Banking and finance Andreea Serban
Business integrity Andrei Burz-Pinzaru
Business integrity Catalina Stroe
Capital markets Andrei Burz-Pinzaru
Competition Florentina Munteanu
Competition Andrea Grigoras
Consumer, data protection and intellectual property Georgiana Singurel
Consumer, data protection and intellectual property Silvia Axinescu
Corporate, commercial and M&A Alexandru Reff
Corporate, commercial and M&A Georgiana Singurel
Corporate, commercial and M&A Diana Fejer
Employment Florentina Munteanu
Energy and environment Georgiana Singurel
Energy and environment Anca Melinte
Energy and environment Ovidiu Balaceanu
Insolvency Florentina Munteanu
Litigation Andreea Artenie
Public sector Georgiana Singurel
Public sector Adrian Coman
Public sector Alexandru Lascu
Real estate Alexandru Reff
Real estate Irina Dimitriu
TMT Georgiana Singurel
TMT Silvia Axinescu
Intellectual property Georgiana Singurel
Intellectual property Silvia Axinescu

Financial Services Industry
CLIENT: Nic Balaceanu (CEO)
COMPANY/FIRM: Lendrise Marketplace S.R.L., start-up that manages the ScoreRise mobile app
TESTIMONIAL: As a fintech company, we have had to hire Reff & Associates firm many times to help us with our legal, compliance and lately GDPR matters in Romania. I come back to Andrei Burz-Panzaru and his team time and time again, because I trust him and his colleagues. They are all efficient and effective with significant knowledge in the financial banking arena of Central and Eastern Europe. I respect Andrei’s strategic and fair mind, and appreciate his follow through and quick turnaround. I highly recommend Andrei Burz-Panzaru, Lorena Rosia, Andreea Bira and Silvia Axinescu for their legal and compliance advisory services along the years.


CLIENT: Mihaela B?ciu (General Manager)
COMPANY/FIRM: S.S.I.F. Tradeville S.A., one of the largest investment firm in Romania
TESTIMONIAL: We have been working with Reff and Associates for more than 4 years on various issues (litigation, project development, compliance assurance and general advisory tasks) and our experience has been, without fail, excellent. From the quality of work to response times, from access to top expertise to level of involvement we feel that Reff and Associates has been a great choice for us on a wide array of projects. Our overall experience was that of a sound legal partner for a dynamic and innovative business.


CLIENT: Magdalena Cristescu (Chief Legal & Compliance Officer)
COMPANY/FIRM: Intrum Romania S.A., the undisputed market leader of Europe having a wide-ranging expertise in debt collection services and credit management
TESTIMONIAL: We have cooperated with Reff and Associates in several situations of high importance to our company. We value very much the swift communication, the deep and detailed level of understanding of our business, the flexibility and availability of dedicated teams and the tailor-made solutions to the issues we have been asking for consultancy. We will certainly use their professional services in the future and recommend this consultant to interested people as well!


CLIENT: Mihai Flucus (Managing Director)
COMPANY/FIRM: InvestCapital LTD, securitization vehicle part of Kruk Group
TESTIMONIAL: During our multiple receivable assignment opportunities, we had the pleasure of cooperating with Reff &Associates while they were acting as a legal counsel, both buy-side and sell-side. The stand-out trait of this company and its professional team is represented by a knowledgeable, ethical and efficient approach towards the client needs and objectives. In addition, we have always encountered as part of their team, well-prepared professionals who are ready to offer the requested technical guidance, whilst proactively tackling connected elements.


CLIENT: Mihai Rotaru (Deputy Head of Legal)
COMPANY/FIRM: Banca Transilvania, the largest bank in Romania
TESTIMONIAL: Reff & Asociatii’s team is a reliable partner in any type of banking and financing transactions, that manages to identify, in any context, the most suitable win – win legal solutions for all the involved parties. The high quality of their services is based on team members’ sophisticated skills and expertise and also, on their perpetual inclination toward innovative tools and effective approaches.


CLIENT: Mircea Albu (Workout Department Manager)
COMPANY/FIRM: Patria Bank S.A., Bucharest-based Romanian bank
TESTIMONIAL: Reff & Associates is definitely the go-to law firm for large scale, complex NPL portfolio deals and has one of the strongest and most knowledgeable team on the Romanian market. Andrei Burz-Pinzaru has a business oriented and pragmatic approach, he is able to take the right stance between appropriate advising and recognizing that commercial contracts sometimes require reaching decisions quicker but also focusing on considered risks. Andreea Serban is excellent at issue spotting and relationship management, she is pro-active and has a deep knowledge of the NPL market. It was a pleasure working with both of them and we would certainly recommend them to any of our contacts.


CLIENT: Alina Sitaru
COMPANY/FIRM: KRUK Romania, part of Kruk Group, one of the largest debt management companies in the Central Europe
TESTIMONIAL: This firm is a true market leader in NPL projects in Romania. I have been working with Reff & Associates, particularly with Andrei Burz-Pinzaru and Andreea Serban, for over three years now on acquisitions of NPL portfolios. I rely heavily on both of them to help us easily navigate legal challenges in each deal and advise us on business sensitive issues. Andrei is our trusted advisor and an innovator, he always provides valuable insights and keeps us ahead of opportunities and market trends. Andreea is tenacious, technically brilliant, friendly and personable and very responsive. She is an excellent negotiator, balanced and fair, and always finds a compromise solution acceptable to both parties. I really value in our long-term collaboration the fact that they constantly keep our goals at the heart of their approach and they also project a unified front with us (each time we act like a single team).


Mergers & Acquisitions Practice
CLIENT: Emile Poot (Head of Corporate Development | Head of Tax)
COMPANY/FIRM: Damen Shipyards Group, the largest shipbuilding group in the Netherlands and one of the leading builders of workboats and fast craft worldwide
TESTIMONIAL: Please allow me to share some words on what makes Georgiana Singurel a great M&A lawyer and why we like to work with her.       

                  

The primary one, obviously, is the level of trust and transparency. This makes it very easy to work together and to communicate on a very open and transparent way. There is a high degree of mutual trust.

The second reason is Georgiana’s level of experience. I know this is an obvious reason, but it is a privilege to work with a lawyer who knows what’s happening in terms of best practices and current market conditions. Each (phase of a) deal has its own set of unique circumstances and challenges and it is therefore important to have somebody like Georgiana who’s seen a lot of deals and has the practical experience to deal with any problem that may come up. 

Third, Georgiana and her colleagues have built-up quote some industry knowledge. As our industry has its unique legal considerations, having such knowledge is critical in getting the legal protection we need in the SPA and other deal-related legal agreements. There are a lot of subtleties among transactions and having the right knowledge and experience within our industry often proves to be a distinctive quality in finding such subtleties.

Fourthly, Georgiana and her colleagues know about the Damen business. Depending the type of project and specific phase of a project, Georgiana knows when to position herself as “the creator of paper work”, or as one of the key strategic advisors on a deal. Naturally, we prefer the latter if possible, however there are pre-cooked parts of transactions where time and speed are of the essence and the role of an M&A lawyer is limited to merely commodity work. This is something Georgiana very well understands and can easily adapt to.

The fifth element I would add is a high degree of pragmatism, especially required for our business / company. We’re looking for a lawyer with a deal maker mindset and one that doesn’t waste our time on items that are less relevant for us. For this, again, the Damen experience and industry knowledge are very important. In a family company like Damen, deals are always very personal and individual, and so are the objectives. Georgiana knows what to push for. She listens, and demonstrated over and over again that she knows what is most and least important to Damen.

Last but not least, Georgiana surrounds herself with a strong team. As M&A is typically not a one-(wo)man show, Georgiana has a capable and quality team working alongside them. And, also important, she knows how to strike the right balance between what she does herself and what she delegates to associates.


CLIENT: Sebastian Torneanu (Finance and Administration Manager)
COMPANY/FIRM: Grupo Antolin Spain, one of the key players in the automotive sector
TESTIMONIAL: We are working with Reff & Associates team since many years, being our core partner in all matters regarding due diligence, transactional and legal assistance. Their strong professional knowledge and skills, but also their attitude and dedication always add a substantial value to our projects. The business responsible Georgiana Singurel has always a proactive attitude and support the cooperation in all matters not only with Reff & Associates activity but also all the relationship management between our company and the whole Deloitte structure in Romania and abroad.


CLIENT: Ahmet Ahmedov
COMPANY/FIRM: Trakya Cam Sanayii A.S, one of the biggest flat glass producer in Europe
TESTIMONIAL: I firstly met Reff & associates in 2012, when our group was seeking for legal assistance in the taking over of a Romanian company. It was such an impressive experience, that we continued to work with them ever since, on all our projects – which included transaction assistance, day-to-day advice on commercial or employment aspects, as well as consultations on all various complex matters we encountered in our activity. It is a cooperation that both my organization and myself values and trusts. During all these years, the main point of contact was Georgiana Singurel, partner of the M&A legal team, whom I would describe as a great dealmaker in negotiations and a very focused and constructive advisor in all our interactions. I highly praise her expertise and know that – after all these years – she intuitively anticipates our movements in negotiations and the real key points for our organization. Hence, it is a high comfort for me to work with her and I would recommend her to anyone looking for a knowledgeable and dedicated counsel.


Real Estate Practice
CLIENT: Ovidiu Sandor
COMPANY/FIRM: Mulberry Group, real estate development firm
TESTIMONIAL: The real-estate team at Reff, led by Irina Dumitriu, has been involved in the most significant transactions of our group of companies. They have proven to be a very competent team, with the ability to focus and deliver, sometimes under great time pressure. Besides a deep understanding of the legal aspects and a broad experience in the market, they are always aware of the commercial interests of the client and act in a way that properly balances the management of the legal risks with these commercial goals.


CLIENT: Robert Ionita
COMPANY/FIRM: NEPI Rockcastle plc, commercial property investor and developer
TESTIMONIAL: Reff & Associates represents more than just a law firm to us. They are a reliable and trustworthy business partner who we can always rely upon. Apart from well-documented and thorough legal advice provided, the practical experience and commercial oriented approach of Reff & Associates team brings added value to our projects. Irina Dimitriu’s full dedication, in particular, played a crucial role in moving forward with our recent deals.


CLIENT: Bogdana Constantinescu (Head of Legal)
COMPANY/FIRM: Arcade
TESTIMONIAL: One of the most professional team on the market with extensive experience and high technical skills. Collaboration with the real estate team is all the more enjoyable and valuable because they have a very good client approach and attention for business details. They were always prompt in delivering the services, persistent in sustaining their opinions when necessary but also flexible in accommodating various transactions structures and commercial agreements.


CLIENT: Head of Legal of one of the largest retailers in Romania
COMPANY/FIRM: confidential
TESTIMONIAL: I was particularly impressed with the Reff & Associates team’s pragmatic and business oriented approach, focused on finding balanced solutions. We especially valued their sensible legal input, business orientated, aimed at mitigating risks and closing the deal. Their solid legal knowledge, combined with an excellent understanding of the market, makes them one of the most reliable collaborators on the market and also trustful partners.


Employment Practice
CLIENT: Antoaneta Vacaroiu (Legal Consultant Romania & Moldova)
COMPANY/FIRM: Avon Cosmetics (Romania), the fifth-largest beauty company and the second largest direct-selling enterprise in the world
TESTIMONIAL: The employment team of Reff & Associates, led by Florentina Munteanu, is very professional and responsible. It are ready to answer your questions any time in formal and informal ways at the same level of professionalism and accuracy. The team is aspirational and highly ethical. We truly value the timely, sound and objective advice and the day-to-day involvement provided in every step of our activity. We would definitely recommend and look forward to work with them. 


Competition Practice
CLIENT: Vlad Tigoiu (Chief Strategy Officer)
COMPANY/FIRM: Fildas Catena Group, the third largest retailer on the Romanian pharmaceutical market
TESTIMONIAL: We have a long-standing relationship with Reff & Associates, working with them for many years, especially with the competition law team led by Florentina Munteanu. We are particularly impressed by how reliable and client-oriented they are, and we felt on many occasions that they went the extra-mile for us to find proper solutions to complex issues. We are truly grateful for their effort and collaboration. 



At Deloitte, we understand that our diversity is a key driver of our effectiveness in the market. That’s why, in FY2018, we re-committed to progressing our already strong culture of inclusion and increasing gender representation at all levels across Deloitte.

Our deeply embedded, ongoing initiatives to promote diversity and inclusion at Deloitte have proven effective.

  • Deloitte member firms have adopted progressively advanced talent initiatives—including workplace flexibility, and family leave and return-to-work policies—that attract women, parents and employees of all generations.
  • Many Deloitte member firms offer their people opportunities through global business resource groups (BRGs) to connect and build networks with others who share affinity indicators such as gender, race, religion and sexual orientation. Some member firms have also established councils that bridge gaps between single-identity workplace groups.
  • Deloitte leaders in Australia, Canada, UK, US and other countries have been recognized externally for inclusion efforts and/or serve on boards of organizations that promote inclusion.
  • Globally, Deloitte creates a safe work environment for all people through its strong policies against misconduct, inappropriate behavior or sexual harassment.

These are some of the significant reasons why Deloitte is recognized as a desirable workplace by organizations that include 
Great Place to Work, LinkedIn, National Association of Female Executives (US), The Times (UK), Glassdoor.

While we are proud of the accolades we have earned and the policies and programs we have implemented, we understand that we must change as the market and world around us change. To lead in the areas of inclusion and diversity, we must achieve more. That is why we are focusing many of our current efforts on gender representation and why we will continue to seek and hire qualified women, provide ample developmental and promotional and leadership opportunities, and remain committed to fair pay for all.

Burz Pinzaru Andrei, Managing Partner

What do you see as the main points that differentiate Reff & Associates SCA from your competitors?

We are different from our competitors in several ways:

  • For the last 5 years we have consistently been the fastest growing law firm in the Romanian market;
  • With more than 70 lawyers, we are one of the top 5 largest firms in Romania, which allows us to achieve high levels of specialisation per each area of practice, gives us resources to invest in developing our people and permits us to handle in the same time multiple complex projects without making any compromise on quality.
  • We are global, yet grounded. Being part of Deloitte Legal (over 2,500 lawyers in 85 countries) and the broader “Deloitte family”, we not only have access to legal international best practices but we are distinctive in our ability to combine legal expertise with financial, tax and accounting expertise, handling multidisciplinary projects at a uniquely superior level, to the benefit of our clients. Given the consistent cooperation with other professionals in Deloitte, our lawyers have tax, financial or accounting knowledge superior to other law firms, allowing them to better understand the business needs and issues of the clients and come up with innovative solutions. This combination is appreciated by the clients as being particularly powerful in areas like M&A, Tax Controversy, NPL and finance transactions.
  • While we are a mature and leading legal practice in all areas of business law, we are also at the forefront of transformation of the legal profession. For example, we have launched a new service offering, Legal Management Consulting (LMC), a service dedicated to helping General Counsels overcome the challenges that legal departments are facing today. In developing this approach, we brought together leading experts in law, operating model transformation, business and technology to focus on how business could modernize the way legal needs are addressed. As of now, we are the only law firm delivering such services in Romania.

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

We contemplate growth across all practice areas of the firm, with Corporate M&A and Litigations as key drivers, followed by Real Estate, Banking and Competition Law. In addition to our long standing track record in transaction work which is fueled by the economic environment, we see a growth in demand for legal risk management services in various areas of practice (e.g., white collar crime, GDPR, personal liability of top management, tax evasion and money laundering risks). Companies are navigating an increasingly risky legal environment, triggering both risks of material fines as well as reputational risks, and we are ideally positioned to assist in these areas given the ability to combine our legal expertise with the broader risk management capabilities in Deloitte.

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

There are four pillars on which we focus to the ultimate benefit of our clients: attracting, developing and retaining top talents, dedication of our senior people to addressing our clients’ demands, incorporation of technology in our day to day work so that we can deliver more effectively to our clients and working closely with the global Deloitte Legal network to serve our clients across geographies and put international best practices at work for the benefit our clients.

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

We are embracing technology in various ways, from implementing contract automation tools to embedding A.I. and robotics in the way we deliver our work to the clients. Our approach is not limited to only embracing technology, but also tried-and-tested ways of improving processes, which allows us not only to deliver our legal services in a more effective way to our clients, but also help legal departments improve efficiencies and increase the value they deliver back to their business.

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

Reff & Associates assisted a real estate fund recently in the acquisition of a portfolio, which, at EUR113 mln deal value, is one the largest executed in Romania in 2019. The project was not only highly complex, involving multiple teams (real estate and banking), but also a cross-border project and had to be executed under extremely tight deadlines. Besides the complexity of the transaction per se, has tested our strength, endurance and capacity to work under harsh time constraints which proved once again our ability to deliver at the highest standards.

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

We have been growing fast for the last six years and are now one of the largest five law firms in Romania (by headcount). We have a strong foundation based on well-structured service lines, a broad client portfolio and a strong reputation.

We see growth continuing on a platform which was never stronger: the well-structured service lines, the client portfolio and reputation, the close integration with Deloitte fiscal, risk, financial advisory and consulting practices, and the global network. We see ourselves as a progressive firm responding to present-day talent aspirations and to market expectations that law is part of integrated business solutions. In three years’ time, we should be not one of the largest in the country but also a leader of innovation in the legal profession, driving efficiency and profitability through automation of processes and leveraging multidisciplinary and global integration as part of Deloitte Legal.