Steven Ongena > AKD > Brussels, Belgium > Lawyer Profile

Rue des Colonies / Koloniënstraat 56-3
B-1000 Brussels
Steven Ongena photo

Work Department

Real Estate & Construction




Steven Ongena is a partner and lawyer at AKD. He advises on very diverse transactions, covering the full spectrum of legal instruments (such as transfers in full ownership and of rights in rem and immovable property financing leases). To his clients in real estate and retail Steven explains the practical implications of the law, as well as the prevailing market standards and expectations.

Steven’s real estate practice focuses on long-term projects such as the relocating of headquarters or production facilities. He also advises retail clients throughout the entire retail life cycle, namely developing, managing and restructuring a network.

For more than 20 years Steven has been providing clients with well thought-out and appropriate advice. His clients range from large corporations to governments at home and abroad. The Legal 500 has already recommended Steven and his real estate practice for the past five consecutive years.

Steven has helped to develop our current retail practice which includes some of the world’s most prestigious brands and covers a broad range of sectors such as the clothing, cosmetics, food & beverages and car industries. Steven advises both on developments via third parties (agents, franchisees and distributors) and on developments via internally managed sales outlets. For three years in a row the Legal 500 has described Steven’s retail practice as one of the best there is.

Steven also has a litigation practice which focuses on contractual disputes with an emphasis on disputes resulting from the termination of distribution agreements. Steven also regularly represents clients in lease renewals. In these types of cases landlords and tenants have to submit their dispute to the court if they disagree on the terms of renewal. Steven’s cases usually include a cross-border element.

Lawyer Rankings

Belgium > Real estate and construction

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 ‘knowledgeableSteven 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.

Belgium > Industry focus: Retail

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.