Firm Profile > AKD > Brussels, Belgium

Rue des Colonies / Koloniënstraat 56-3
B-1000 Brussels

Industry focus: Retail Tier 1

AKD is most active in retail property work from both a transactional and litigation perspective, but also handles corporate and M&A and supply-related matters for its clients. Department head Steven Ongena, who is best known for his real estate practice, and counsel Pol Cools are also active in drawing up franchise agreements to align with EU competition law, as well as advising on consumer protection standards and distribution claims. Recent work includes assisting landlords and tenants with the payment of rent obligations during the Covid-19 crisis.

Practice head(s):

Steven Ongena

Other key lawyers:

Pol Cools


‘During the first weeks of the Covid-19 lockdown, AKD’s retail team was there for us, even when the lawyers were out-of-office due to governmental restrictions. They provided legal advice, but also went beyond that and proposed practical – rather than simply legal – solutions for the issues at hand.’

Key clients

Hilfiger Stores Belgium (PVH group)

Calvin Klein Stores Belgium (PVH group)


Claire’s Accessories

Dessange International


Stella Bikes

IMDC (brand “Grain de Malice”)

Valentino Chocolatier

RJB Belgium



Industry focus: IT and telecoms Tier 4

AKD's 'well-structured' IT, IP and data protection practice advises telecoms operators, cloud providers and parties seeking AI licences on a range of telecoms regulatory and digital security matters. Headed by Paul Van den Bulck, who has experience across the transactional and disputes space, it also assists on corporate and M&A-related investments.

Practice head(s):

Paul Van den Bulck


We are appreciative of lawyers who not only know their business well but also have experience of the software industry, are responsive and can quickly adapt to the needs of our business – such that they are almost a part of our company while they represent us – and have the resolve to provide us with the most appropriate and high-quality advice and guidance. We have not found many lawyers that consistently meet all those criteria; Paul Van den Bulck of AKD, though, is one that does.’

Good teamwork, well structured, can handle multiple cases.’

Key clients


Partena Guichet d’Entreprises

ING (ING Corporate Investments)

Kerridge Commercial Systems

Stella Bikes

IP Nexia (Luxembourg)


@Leisure Group (Belvilla)

Institut Belge des Services postaux et des télécommunications (IBPT)

IP Nexia (Belgium)

GFT Technologies

Partena Secretariat Social

Partena Professional

Centre de Médiation et d’Arbitrage de Paris


Real estate and construction Tier 4

AKD has a strong track record handling large-scale relocation projects for clients, as well as excelling in contentious and transactional work. It has had a notable increase in mandates with a nexus to the logistics sector. The client base includes investment entities and international retail companies. The 'knowledgeable' Steven Ongena and Simon Ceulemans (who 'knows all aspects of commercial real estate') jointly lead the department, in which counsel Pol Cools is another key contact.

Practice head(s):

Steven Ongena; Simon Ceulemans

Other key lawyers:

Pol Cools


Professional, knowledgeable and friendly, calm team‘.

AKD has a very good real estate and construction practice team‘.

Simon Ceulemans is commercial and focussed on a niche of the real estate market in which very few lawyers of his age are as skilled as he is‘.

Key clients

Claire’s Accessories

Stella Bikes

AKD is a leading Benelux law firm with offices in Brussels, Luxembourg and the Netherlands. With a team of 470 committed lawyers, tax lawyers and staff, it delivers high quality legal services based on a full-service approach. Its client base varies from large multinational companies to family-owned businesses, from financial institutions to high net worth individuals, and from the semi-public sector to listed entities.

From our Brussels office, our firm is perfectly positioned to assist any company in the Benelux that is doing business with the rest of the world, or companies from, for example, Asia or the US that are, or want to be, active in the Benelux.

We provide our clients with Belgian, Dutch and Luxembourg legal and tax advice with regard to, for example, corporate and M&A, real estate, IP, ICT, data privacy and security and commercial litigation.

Department Name Email Telephone
EU Law, Procurement Law & Competition Pieter Kuypers +31 88 253 5083
Banking & Finance Hubert André-Dumont +32 2 629 4260
Corporate/M&A Timothy Speelman +32 2 629 42 54
Tax Werner Heyvaert +32 2 629 42 88
IP & IP/Data protection & Privacy Paul van den Bulck +32 2 629 42 39
Real estate and Construction Steven Ongena +32 2 629 42 28
Real estate Simon Ceulemans +32 2 629 4250
Real estate and Construction Pol Cools +32 2 629 42 16
Employment & Pensions Julien Hick +32 2 629 4253
Photo Name Position Profile
 Hubert André-Dumont  photo Hubert André-Dumont Partner
 Simon Ceulemans  photo Simon Ceulemans Partner
 Pol Cools  photo Pol Cools Counsel
 Werner Heyvaert  photo Werner Heyvaert Partner
 Julien Hick  photo Julien Hick Partner
Mr Joost Houdijk  photo Mr Joost Houdijk Lawyer
Mr Pieter Kuypers photo Mr Pieter Kuypers Partner
 Steven Ongena  photo Steven Ongena Partner
 Timothy Speelman  photo Timothy Speelman Partner
 Paul van den Bulck  photo Paul van den Bulck Partner

Benelux firm AKD appoints partners: Passing the baton to the next generation

AKD Benelux lawyers has appointed five new partners, four of them "home-grown”, managing partner Erwin Rademakers clarifies. “It gives immense pleasure to see colleagues developing and, as next-generation partners, contributing to building the future of our firm.” 

AKD continues to expand in Brussels: Julien Hick appointed employment law partner

AKD Benelux lawyers is delighted to announce the appointment of Julien Hick as partner in Brussels.

Yann Hilpert appointed partner at AKD in Luxembourg

AKD Benelux lawyers is delighted to announce the appointment of Yann Hilpert as partner in Luxembourg.

Conny Staudt takes on partnership at AKD Benelux lawyers, “back to her roots”

Pieter Huys, who leads the team, comments: “We are thrilled to welcome Conny at AKD. Coming at a time where flexible employment has become a hot topic, her expertise in this field neatly complements our own expertise. Earlier this year, the Balanced Labour Market Act (Wet Arbeidsmarkt in Balans) came into force, the purpose of which Act is to make flexible employment less flexible and steady employment less steady. We find that this new legislation has given rise to many questions from our clients, duly aggravated by the uncertainties thrown up by the Covid-19 crisis. Conny's expertise and experience add real value to our team”.

AKD adds six new partners to Benelux footprint

AKD has appointed six new partners in Belgium and the Netherlands. Following the appointment of three new partners in Luxembourg earlier this year, AKD thus further increases its Benelux footprint.

Benelux law firm AKD expands with McGuireWoods’ Brussels team

Benelux law firm AKD expands its Brussels office by adding McGuireWoods’ Brussels team, following AKD’s strategy to be the first choice full-service legal and tax services provider in the Benelux. The incoming team consists of partners Hubert André-Dumont, Paul van den Bulck, Timothy Speelman, Steven Ongena, counsel Pol Cools, and four associates.