Firm Profile > Simont Braun > Brussels, Belgium

Simont Braun
Avenue Louise 250 (10)

Belgium > Fintech Tier 1

Simont Braun has 'a seamlessly-integrated team' advising on disruptive initiatives involving mobile payments, virtual currencies and blockchain applications. Philippe De Prez has 'a remarkable track record in this field', and alongside Joan Carette – who joined from Osborne Clarke in July 2020 – is recognised as a 'stand-out partner'. Current work includes assisting UK-based Ebury on its set-up and licensing as the first B2B provider to move to Belgium ahead of Brexit. De Prez and Carette jointly lead the practice, and former co-head Catherine Houssa retired.

Practice head(s):

Philippe De Prez; Joan Carette

Other key lawyers:

Thomas Derval


The fintech team at Simont Braun is highly knowledgeable, with a great industry knowledge and broad focus.

Philippe de Prez is a great, all-round financial regulatory lawyer. He has a strong focus on fintech and innovation within the financial sector and has built up a remarkable track record in this field. He is a very nice guy; flexible and easily accessible.

In a few years, Simont Braun has achieved an impressive position on the fintech scene in Belgium and beyond. Fintech and digital finance is really a core business for them. They act as a seamlessly-integrated team, truly understand how financial services work and can cover all aspects of digital finance. They are very responsive, pragmatic and creative, and have also developed good relationships with the regulator.

The firm is well-connected to industry organisations. The team is young, agile and extremely flexible.

Philippe De Prez and Thomas Derval combine a real start-up mentality with a deep understanding of financial consumer laws and client needs. And they always keep their cool.

Philippe De Prez and the team are great people to work with: very human and accessible. They explain in understandable terms what the legislation is requiring and give practical solutions to respect it while taking into account the maturity of the organisation of the client.

Extraordinary knowledge of the market; a strong team from associate to partner, very friendly to work with, very strong legal capacities, and extremely reliable and efficient.

Philippe De Prez, Joan Carette are reliable and very friendly, do efficient work and, above all, have a strong human attitude which  reinforces the general trust built.

The team is number one for fintech matters in Belgium. They are proactive and hands-on, with a unique knowledge of the market and pragmatic advice.

Key individuals are Philippe De Prez and Joan Carette. Both are stand-out partners, while the addition of Joan makes the team unmatched in Belgium.

Key clients



Ebury Partners UK

The European Commission


Belgian Mobile ID (app itsme)

Oney Banque


Viva Wallet


mozzeno SA




Belgium > EU regulatory: Financial services Tier 2

Simont Braun's 'very responsive, accessible and solutions-oriented' team consists of 'true experts on regulation and fintech'. Recent work included advising banking and fintech clients on the regulatory aspects of implementing strategies to manage the potential impact of Brexit, as well as handling online payment and electronic banking regulation issues. The 'very energetic and personable' Philippe De Prez is 'very knowledgeable about fintech specificities'; he jointly leads the practice with the 'technically robust' Joan Carette (who was formerly at Osborne Clarke). Other key individuals include counsel Thomas Derval, senior associate Jean-Christophe Vercauteren and associate Charlotte De Thaye. Catherine Houssa retired.

Practice head(s):

Philippe De Prez; Joan Carette


The regulatory team of Simont Braun is knowledgeable, easy and quick to work with. They have broad expertise and great work spirit.

Charlotte De Thaye works fast and is very responsive.

Philippe De Prez is always available and reliable.

Jean-Christophe Vercauteren is especially knowledgeable in all areas of fintech law.

Philippe De Prez is a great, all-round financial regulatory lawyer. He has a strong focus on fintech and innovation within the financial sector and has built up a remarkable track record in this field‘.

Key clients

Belgian Mobile ID





The European Commission

Belgium > Intellectual property Tier 2

At Simont Braun, patent litigation is one of the IP practice's cornerstones, with the firm handling a mix of domestic and cross-border cases. It also has an excellent record in trade mark infringement proceedings, and is highly active in cases before the EU Court of Justice and General Court. Elsewhere, the team's other areas of expertise include geographical indications and design protection. In the copyright arena, the firm has longstanding client relationships with a number of cable television operators. Philippe Campolini joined Stibbe in late 2019, but an experienced team includes Fernand de Visscher, who represented Pierre Fabre Médicaments in an SPC infringement matter against Omnichem. The practice is jointly led by Eric De Gryse and Emmanuel Cornu, who both worked to defend Hema b.v. and Hema Belgium sprl in high-profile trade mark infringement proceedings brought by Levi Strauss.

Practice head(s):

Eric De Gryse; Emmanuel Cornu

Other key lawyers:


‘Its strength is the extensive knowledge it has of the courts and the system.’

‘Excellent knowledge of IP, reactivity, clarity, efficiency.’

‘Emmanuel Cornu and Fernand de Visscher are highly-skilled in IP and are very reactive. Excellent and innovative strategy proposed with positive results.’

Key clients




EG (Eurogenerics)

Lehning Entreprise

Pierre Fabre Medicaments

VOO (Brutélé and Voo)

FN Herstal


S.A. Louis Delhaize Financière et de Participation (“Deli Traiteur”)

Magellan (“BONOBO”)

OGI Systems

Group Verzele (“Golden Palce”)

Livia Canestraro

L’Oréal (France and Belgium)

Knauf Insulation

Belgium > Real estate and construction Tier 2

Simont Braun's team 'reacts quickly and provides excellent and practically oriented advice in very technical matters'. The department draws upon the firm's strength in public and administrative law to cover a wide range of real estate work. Practice head Manuela von Kuegelgen is leading the advice to the Urban Development Corporation in Brussels on the ongoing implementation of the Contemporary and Modern Art Museum and Architecture Museum development project. Associate Laura Grauer is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Manuela von Kuegelgen

Other key lawyers:


The team is always available and ready to deliver thorough advice and practical solutions‘.

Belgium > Commercial, corporate and M&A Tier 3

Simont Braun acts for clients on a broad cross-section of mandates, such as the structuring of corporate and family entities, public takeovers and securities issuances. In one highlight, Axel Maeterlinck advised France-based Dugas on the acquisition of its Belgian distributor. Beyond its involvement in major deals, the group also assists clients with handling corporate disputes, such as shareholder matters and post-acquisition claims. Sandrine Hirsch is the practice head.

Practice head(s):

Sandrine Hirsch


Agile, multidisciplinary and integrated team that is oriented towards simple and pragmatic solutions.

Axel Maeterlinck provides precise and pragmatic corporate advice, is very responsive, and brings calm and serenity in the room. Emmanuel Cornu is very experienced and has broad-ranging capabilities in IP and distribution matters. He also thrives at finding the right balance in negotiation strategies.

We would recommend particularly Sandrine Hirsch, Axel Maeterlinck and Steven Callens. Sandrine Hirsch is really outstanding in many respects. She delivers premium quality, both in M&A and complex governance issues. Her engagement to clients in terms of availability and attention to detail is impressive. One of the absolute top lawyers on the Brussels market. Also, Steven Callens and Axel Maeterlinck are excellent and really a pleasure to work with.

Very good value for money, very skilled and friendly lawyers that are always available.

Very involved and great knowledge of market practices.

Key clients

P&V Assurances

Aliaxis Group

Belgian Families of AB Inbev



Financière de Tubize


Andera Partners

Samusocial ASBL

Argef (Argenson Gestion Finance SA)

Club Optic Libre

Telos Impact


Financière Dugas

Wizz Investments

Belgium > Dispute resolution Tier 3

The 'very experienced' team at Simont Braun has had an uptick in instructions involving class actions, as well as handling insolvency litigation. The group is representing consumer protection company Test-Achats in an ongoing class action against Ryanair. Paul Alain Foriers and Rafaël Jafferali are the joint heads of the practice. Steven Callens and counsel Fanny Laune are key contacts.

Practice head(s):

Paul Alain Foriers; Rafaël Jafferali

Other key lawyers:


Steven Callens – pragmatic and proactive approach‘.

Steven Callens is very accessible, straightforward and smart‘.

Key clients



The Belgian State



Employment >

  • A leading Belgian independent business law firm numbering some 50 lawyers.
  • An integrated and multidisciplinary structure providing tailored advice on innovative cross-practice projects.
  • A high level of involvement from the partners; comprehensive and practical advice; long-term perspective with clients.
  • Assists a broad spectrum of industries through dedicated expert teams.
  • Promotes excellence, flexibility and efficiency via its recognised specialists.
  • Significant academic and legislative involvement with several lawyers being university professors, teaching assistants, active in professional associations and/or actively participating in legislative work.
  • International impact as a member of The Interlex Group, a worldwide non-exclusive network of selected law firms, in addition to strong bilateral and independent relationships with various other top foreign law firms.
  • Uncompromising stance regarding professional ethics (especially independence and confidentiality), paying particular attention to maintaining sound internal governance.
  • Diversity is part of our DNA, whether in terms of gender, profile or background.
Department Name Email Telephone
Corporate, M&A and Capital Markets Sandrine Hirsch
Intellectual Property Fernand de Visscher
Real Estate, Public and Administrative law Manuela von Kuegelgen
Dispute resolution (Supreme Court), Corporate M&A Paul Alain Foriers
Dispute resolution, Commercial law Béatrice Thieffry
Intellectual Property Emmanuel Cornu
Corporate M&A and Dispute Resolution Steven Callens
Financial Services and Digital Finance Joan Carette
Financial Services and Digital Finance Philippe De Prez
Dispute Resolution Rafaël Jafferali
Corporate M&A Axel Maeterlinck
Intellectual Property Eric De Gryse
Construction law Thomas Braun
Tax law Jacques Malherbe
Financial Criminal Law Jean-François Terlinden
Photo Name Position Profile
Mr Thomas Braun  photo Mr Thomas Braun Partner specialised in Construction Law and Real Estate. Mediator in civil and…
Mr Steven Callens  photo Mr Steven Callens Steven Callens specialises in M&A, corporate law, corporate governance and dispute resolution.…
Mrs Joan Carette photo Mrs Joan Carette Partner
Mr Emmanuel Cornu  photo Mr Emmanuel Cornu Partner specialised in Intellectual Property.
Mr Eric De Gryse  photo Mr Eric De Gryse Eric De Gryse is a specialist in intellectual property law. He mainly…
Mr Philippe De Prez  photo Mr Philippe De Prez Senior Financial law & FinTech lawyer with a strong focus on financial…
Mr Paul Alain Foriers  photo Mr Paul Alain Foriers Lawyer at the Supreme Court and professor at the Université Libre de…
Mrs Sandrine Hirsch  photo Mrs Sandrine Hirsch Sandrine Hirsch has a wide experience in the field of business law…
Mr Rafaël Jafferali photo Mr Rafaël Jafferali Partner Rafaël Jafferali is a specialist in litigation (including arbitration and proceedings before…
Mr Axel Maeterlinck  photo Mr Axel Maeterlinck Partner Axel Maeterlinck has a broad experience in domestic and cross-border M&A and…
Mr Tom Swinnen photo Mr Tom Swinnen Tom Swinnen specialises in corporate and M&A (incl. venture capital and private…
Mr Jean-François Terlinden  photo Mr Jean-François Terlinden Partner Jean-François Terlinden is a specialist in criminal law, financial law and tax…
Mrs Béatrice Thieffry  photo Mrs Béatrice Thieffry Béatrice Thieffry has a wide experience in the area of business law.…
Mr Laurent de Brouwer  photo Mr Laurent de Brouwer Of Counsel specialised in Marketing, Advertising, Consumer Rights and Unfair Competition. Laurent…
Mr Fernand de Visscher  photo Mr Fernand de Visscher Partner specialised in patents, copyright, media and designs as well as transactional…
Mrs Manuela von Kuegelgen  photo Mrs Manuela von Kuegelgen Manuela von Kuegelgen is a specialist in real estate transactions and administrative…
Number of lawyers : 45



Social equity and economic efficiency are major concerns at Simont Braun. These issues are an important part of our strategy and we continually strive to actively defend the fundamental values of social commitment.

We promote a fairer and more equitable world, a process that starts in-house. In the workplace, we ensure the well-being of all our staff while enhancing diversity and reducing our environmental footprint. To this end, we also enter into partnerships with businesses, non-profit organisations and civil society.

PRO BONO WORK – Every year Simont Braun provides hours of legal support to non-profit organisations and vulnerable individuals. Some of our lawyers are also involved in the drafting of key legislative texts on a pro bono basis.

ENVIRONMENTAL COMMITMENT – In our day-to-day activities we are committed to a healthier, cleaner and sustainable planet. We are continuously adapting our behaviour and have implemented a series of measures to reduce our environmental footprint. We also make sure that our selection criteria for external providers incorporate these issues.

DIVERSITY – Diversity is part of our DNA, whether in terms of gender, profile or background. We have always placed great emphasis on empowering and retaining women, all the way to the very top. One-half of our associates and one-third of our partners are women. Two of our five executive committee members are women, and our past and current managing partners are women. Such a high proportion of women in leading positions is rare in law firms and, more generally, in the corporate world.

We are also a member of Women In Law and Leadership (WILL). This is a Brussels-based project for all law firms designed to support talented women on their way to becoming leaders, providing them with the tools they require to succeed.

Simont Braun is a sponsor and Sandrine Hirsch is a member of Women on Board, a non-profit association created by women dedicated to promoting access by women to directorship roles within Belgian enterprises.

Simont Braun is a co-founding member of the Legal Diversity & Inclusion Alliance (LDIA), a collective effort by several law firms in Belgium and nominated as an Outstanding Network/Group for the Chambers Europe Awards 2021 within the Diversity and Inclusion categories. By joining LDIA, member firms confirm their commitment to creating a diverse and inclusive working environment, to the exchange of good practices on diversity and inclusion, and to raise awareness of non-discrimination and diversity issues by combining efforts to organise events, workshops, training and other activities. LDIA is a very young initiative (early 2019), and beyond these initiatives, its ultimate goal is to increase awareness of law firms and of the legal sector in Belgium in order to achieve concrete results and improvements regarding diversity and inclusion. In this framework, Simont Braun organises internal events to raise awareness on diversity matters. The next event will take place on 8 March for the International Women’s Rights Day – we are hosting the author of the book “All people are equal, including women” (Dirk Van Gerven).

Gender diversity: We have always placed great emphasis on empowering and retaining women all the way to the top. Since its founding, our firm has always had in average one-third of female partners. Gender diversity, with women becoming leaders, even before gender diversity and quotas (in certain areas) became an important topic, felt natural. We have continued on this path, and currently, one-half of our associates and one-third of our partners are women, two of our five executive committee members are women, and our past and current managing partners are women, just as our communication & marketing manager. Simont Braun is an active member of WILL (Women in Law and Leadership) and of Women on Board.

In more general terms, and as illustrated by our numerous pro bono activities, we are striving to achieve greater diversity, both internally and with our external partners.

DONATION POLICY – Every year Simont Braun allocates a budget to support a number of selected charities.


Independent, flexible and international: Simont Braun is a Belgian independent firm having strong and tailored international connections. We build such connections notably by actively cooperating with foreign law firms sharing our values and standard of excellence, and thanks to our active involvement in international associations. Hence, when international cooperation is required, we can choose the most adequate law firm to work with to offer the best guidance and solution to our clients.

We are also the Belgian member of The Interlex Group which is ranked as an Elite network by Chambers and of XLNC, an association of independent accounting, law and management consulting practices from across the globe.