Firm Profile > SANDS > Oslo , Norway

0254 OSLO

Construction Tier 2

Geir Frøholm leads the group at SANDS, which is recognised for its expertise in construction and infrastructure projects and PPP issues. In a recent highlight, Alf Johan Knag advised Teknisk Entreprenør Vest on the construction of a business centre near Bergen Airport. Morten Hugo Berger is the main contact for construction disputes and Tor Anthon Christiansen assisted Ístak with a project for Helgeland Kraft involving the construction of five power plants in Northern Norway.

Dispute resolution Tier 2

SANDS' 'strong analytical thinking and client-friendly approach' allows it to have 'a unique view of cases it is involved in', Its team of 'skilled negotiators' includes group head Morten Steenstrup, who is 'extremely service minded and hardworking', Bjørn Stordrange, construction expert Morten Hugo Berger, shipping specialist Oddbjørn SlinningHege Birkeland Ersdal and Lars Tormodsgard, who is 'sophisticated, sharp and commercial, with an outstanding ability to read and analyse complex situations'. The group recently represented hundreds of former students in a compensation claim against Westerdals, which charged college fees that exceeded the maximum fee level allowed under Norwegian law, and is defending Finnmarksykehuset in an environmental lawsuit relating to an oil fuel tank spillage.

Fishing and aquaculture Tier 2

Ole-Martin Lund Andreassen leads the department at SANDS, which advises on the full spectrum of issues across the fishing and aquaculture sectors handling regulatory, transactional, corporate advisory and contentious work for clients along the entire supply chain. Andreassen's expertise encompasses coastal zone planning, location clearing issues, aquaculture concessions and issues surrounding vessels. Other key practitioners include regulatory expert Halfdan Mellbye, Eirik Edvardsen, who focuses on transactional mandates, and Lars Alsaker, who has public and administrative law experience.

Insurance Tier 2

The 'effective and highly competent' department at SANDS acts for insurer and policyholder clients including Zurich, Allianz and Protector. Christian Kjellby Nesset leads the practice; he represented Johnson Controls and Chubb in a dispute pertaining to professional liability, advised WR Berkley on the restructuring of its insurance activities in Norway and Sweden, and acted for Moen Marine on the insurance issues relating to two shipwreck incidents.

Maritime law Tier 2

SANDS' 'very professional and responsive' team is 'a pleasure to work with' and advises on transactional, financing, insurance, contentious and employment issues. Team co-leader Marit Kirkhusmo is a key name for financing work and fellow co-head Oddbjørn Slinning has notable experience in restructuring matters. Recent work includes acting for DHT Holdings on the negotiation of a vessel acquisition agreement relating to its purchase of BW Group's entire fleet of VLCC tankers, and assisting Pareto Securities and Master and Commander with the renegotiation of a long-term bareboat charter with CGG.

Banking and finance (including shipping finance) Tier 3

Under the leadership of Stein HegdalSANDS is noted for its strength in the shipping, maritime and oil and gas sectors alongside substantial experience in asset finance, energy finance, acquisition finance and syndications. Marit Kirkhusmo and Oddbjørn Slinning are also key names to note and Hillevi Myhre joined from an in-house position at Nordea. The team's recent work includes advising Helaba on various financing issues, assisting a client with a fleet financing, and acting for Solnes Invest on the structuring of a multi-currency bond loan.

Commercial, corporate and M&A Tier 3

SANDS is 'an all-round robust outfit with highly experienced partners' including practice head Anne Kjølseth Ekerholt, who joined from Advokatfirmaet Selmer ASTerje Gulbrandsen, who is 'pleasant to work with and is strong at the intersection of legal and financial work'; Sverre Tysland, who is recognised for his corporate governance expertise; and healthcare-focused Erik Lind. Lind recently advised Ambea Norge on four separate acquisitions in the healthcare space and assisted Arcus with two trade mark acquisitions.

Electricity and renewable energy Tier 3

SANDS has 'a broad understanding of all aspects of the electricity and renewable energy sectors' thanks to 'a small but highly skilled and dedicated team that can handle any problem thrown at them'. Sverre Tysland heads the team and is a key name for transactional work, Alf Øystein Skudal has 'strong strategic and organisation skills' and specialises in hydro power and grid work, and Halvor Grov handles renewables work. The team recently advised Midt Energi on the divestment of its electrical grid activities and assisted Røros Elektrisitetsverk with its reorganisation.

Employment Tier 3

SANDS' team provides 'professional advice that clients know they can rely on' across employment disputes and investigations, workforce reductions and matters in the energy and natural resources sectors. Torkel Tveit leads the department, which also includes Henning HeitmannEspen Johannessen and Per Ragnar Bronken; Bronken recently represented Menzies Aviation Norway in a dispute relating to a dismissal during a probation period.

EU and competition Tier 3

SANDS' 'very professional' team has 'expansive knowledge and in-depth experience at a Norwegian and international level'. Merger control expert Thomas Sando leads the practice and clients praise his 'high levels of commercial awareness'; he recently advised chocolate producer Hval Sjokoladefabrikk on a complaint to the ESA relating to the Norwegian sugar and chocolate levy, alleging it constitutes unlawful state aid. Aksel Joachim Hageler and Bergen-based Åshild Fløisand are also names to note; Hageler represented Fjord Line in a dispute over port access and the allocation of sailing slots, and Fløisand focuses on public procurement work.

Next Generation Partners

Insolvency and corporate recovery Tier 3

The 'innovative' practice at SANDS has 'in-depth knowledge' of bankruptcies, insolvencies and restructuring mandates; it recently represented Terra Securities in bankruptcy proceedings, and advised Cecon on its bankruptcy. Practice head Jon Skjørshammer led the work and has 'excellent negotiating abilities'. Robert Jensen is the key name for contentious work. Brandment, KM Energy, Prima Invest, Transportnett and Svea Finans are also clients.

Leading individuals

Next Generation Partners

Oil and gas Tier 3

Under the leadership of the 'highly experienced and resourcefulLars Berge AndersenSANDS has 'a highly commercial and responsive approach to disputes' and 'is pragmatic but tough when required'. The group also handles non-contentious work and recently assisted MHWirth with negotiations with a shipyard for a topside and drilling equipment package to furnish a semi-submersible new-build rig. Other clients include Sevan Marine, Safelink and Frydenbø Industri. Maritime expert Oddbjørn Slinning is also active in the space.

Real estate Tier 3

SANDS acts for real estate investors, companies and funds on transactions and developments. Recent highlights include advising Pioneer Capital Partners on its sale of shares in Sagveien Tower and assisting Anders Opsahl Holding with its purchase of three plots of land in Oslo. Jens Aas leads the department and specialises in commercial real estate work and property-related tax issues. Ove-Marthin Granlund and Christian Hartmann are also recommended.

Tax Tier 3

SANDS 'has the skills to combine knowledge of the law generally and tax specifically' to handle global tax mandates, with notable expertise in the fisheries and aquaculture sectors. In a recent highlight, Stig Nordal advised Huddly on the tax issues relating to its series A and series B funding rounds. Other key practitioners include group leader Ulf SørdalErnst RavnaasTorgeri Fjeldskaar and John Olav Auran.

Intellectual property Tier 4

With 'a practical approach to IP work', SANDS is 'proactive and has an excellent network of IP specialists' led by the 'conscientious, service-minded and creativeKatrine Malmer-Høvik; other key names include patent litigator Vidar Johnsen and newly promoted partner Ketil Sellæg Ramberg. The team advised Warner Music Norway on copyright issues, and is assisting Nofima with IP work relating to its research projects.

The firm

We are a full service law firm with offices in Oslo, Trondheim, Bergen, Stavanger, Ålesund, Tromsø and Tønsberg. We are a firm in strong growth – 55 new employees since September 2015, of which 18 new partners – all from leading law firms. We have 12 partners with the right to attend the Supreme Court. Many of our lawyers have heavy business experience and international expertise. Our internal organization ensures seamless work and competence flow across our offices. This allows our clients to gain the necessary expertise regardless of where in their country they are.

Department Name Email Telephone
Anti-corruption due diligence
Arve settlement/generation change
Banking and finance
Compliance, commercial advice and transaction support
Expropriation and discretion
Energy, shipping and offshore
EU, EEA and competition
Fisheries and aquaculture
Global construction desk
Intellectual property
Asset management and private equity
Capital markets
Conflict resolution and procedure
Commercial property
Public Private Partnership (OPS)
Public procurement
Restructuring and insolvency
Tax, fee and accounting
Transactions – M&A
Other offices : Aalesund
Other offices : Bergen
Other offices : Stavanger
Other offices : Tønsberg
Other offices : Tromsø
Other offices : Tronheim