Paksoy > Istanbul, Turkey > Firm Profile


Turkey > Banking, finance and capital markets Tier 1

The team at Paksoy is distinguished by its ‘exceptionally strong eye for detail’, according to sources. Equally adept at handling sophisticated finance transactions and complex regulatory work, the full-service practice also impresses with its longstanding relationships with cross-border lenders –  including foreign banks – as well as major corporate borrowers. Sera Somay heads the banking and finance group and specialises in financings, fund-related investments and restructurings. The department additionally fields a dominant capital markets offering, which is steered by go-to specialist Ömer Çollak; he recently advised Ebebek on its headline-grabbing IPO on the Borsa Istanbul. Corporate finance specialist Ökkeş Şahan, recently promoted to partner, is also to note, while Beril Paksoy and ‘up-and-coming talentMerve Kurdak are highly regarded senior associates.

Practice head(s):

Ömer Çollak; Sera Somay


‘Paksoy is a highly dedicated firm. It has the outstanding ability to understand financial products and structured client needs. The team is well-connected in terms of networks and its clientele brings it diverse cases — hence it has never failed us in terms of extensive knowledge on any legal need.’

‘We value the team for its close client contact, punctual deadline management, and knowledge. Sera Somay is a top-notch partner and never fails.’

‘The team is knowledgeable on local Turkish law, and has vast experience in capital markets transactions. In addition, it is familiar with multilateral development banks, and their requirements, so its proposals take into account that aspect, making the process much smoother and efficient.’

‘Ömer Çollak was always on the ball and his advice was brimming with clarity. He really has an in-depth understanding of the Turkish market, both from a legal and commercial point of view.’

‘All team members have an exceptionally strong eye for detail that has been a benefit to our firm on more than one occasion. They are very focused and reply to questions as quickly as possible with answers and solutions to our problems.’

‘Each team member has a deep knowledge in the area in which they practise. They show the utmost care when reviewing and drafting documents to meet the needs of the client.’

‘Ömer Çollak inspires confidence, is well-grounded and solution-oriented. He understands what we look for and prioritise, and reconciles it with the counterparty’s request to find an agreement in tough negotiations. He is always available and reachable.’

‘Senior associate Merve Kudak also deserves praise as an up-and-coming talent in this market. She is helpful, takes initiative and provides excellent support when needed. She is attentive and punctual.’

Key clients


Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB)

Canada Pension Plan Investment Board




Emirates NBD Bank

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)

Goldman Sachs


International Finance Corporation (IFC)

J.P. Morgan Securities


Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden (FMO)

Turkish Ministry of Treasury and Finance

Türkiye Kalkınma ve Yatırım Bankası (TKYB, Turkish Development and Investment Bank)

Türkiye Sınai Kalkınma Bankası (TSKB, Industrial and Development Bank of Turkey)


U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC)

Ziraat Investment Securities

Work highlights

  • Advised Ebebek on its IPO and listing on the Borsa Istanbul.
  • Advised IFC, DFC and AIIB on their $300m investment in Akbank’s Tier-2 sustainable and gender-linked bond placement.
  • Advised Ülker on a $195m sustainability-linked financing package with conventional and Islamic tranches.

Turkey > Commercial, corporate and M&A Tier 1

The powerhouse corporate, commercial and M&A practice at Paksoy remains a market leader, leveraging the bench strength and experience of its team to advise insurers and domestic and multinational businesses involved in high-value, multi-jurisdictional transactions. The firm’s robust client roster spans sectors ranging from automotive, mining, manufacturing, packaging and aerospace to chemicals, logistics and healthcare. The firm is led by practice area authority Elvan Aziz, who brings expertise to M&A, corporate governance, restructurings and strategic agreements; M. Togan Turan, a specialist in M&A and competition law matters; Stéphanie Beghe Sonmez, an expert in M&A, joint ventures and private equity investments. Other key figures include Nihan Bacanak, who draws on experience in the retail, healthcare and logistics spaces; and Nazlı Bezirci, who assists major insurers.

Practice head(s):

Elvan Aziz; M. Togan Turan; Stéphanie Beghe Sönmez

Other key lawyers:


‘Great team of lawyers, with subsitutes when one is away. Great availability and drafing skills. Deep knowledge of corporate law and M&A transactions (local or multi-jurisdictional).’

‘Elvan Aziz is a great professional, highly knowledgeable in M&A transactions, very much available, able to provide strategic advice.’

Key clients

BAE Systems

Borusan Holding


DP World

General Dynamics






Plastic Omnium

Samsun Yurt Savunma (SYS)



Univar Solutions


Work highlights

  • Advised Imerys on the sale of its high-temperature solutions business to PE fund Platinum Equity.
  • Advised Univar Solutions on the acquisition of Kale Kimya.
  • Advised Plastic Omnium on the acquisition of Varroc Lighting Systems.

Turkey > Dispute resolution Tier 1

From its Istanbul base, Paksoy’s dispute resolution team stands out for its ‘international mindset and great experience’. Indeed, the firm’s single-site model is no barrier to its ability to secure cross-border mandates, with its experience in high-stakes international arbitration cases particularly impressive. Alongside its arbitration prowess, the team handles a broad scope of litigation, including commercial, competition, administrative law and white-collar crime cases, among others. At the helm is go-to litigator Serdar Paksoy, who ‘ranks among the leading top-tier arbitration practitioners’. Next-generation partner Simel Sarıalioğlu is also highly regarded for her experience in both judicial and arbitral proceedings. The group additionally benefits from a strong second line of junior lawyers, including newly promoted counsels Doğuhan Uygun and Onur Çeliker.

Practice head(s):

Serdar Paksoy

Other key lawyers:


‘All lawyers I worked with were very sensible: they all are very knowledgeable in their respective fields; they are detail-oriented; they have a problem-solving mindset; and billing is very transparent.’

‘The team is available when we need it, with the right people for the right business questions and solutions.’

‘The team is really very dedicated. Lawyers are very collaborative and work in a timely manner. Emre Kotil and Onur Çeliker are really very experienced in their areas.’

‘Serdar Paksoy is very highly regarded in the international arbitration community. He ranks among the leading top-tier arbitration practitioners and knows arbitration inside-out, both as counsel and arbitrator.’

‘Simel Sarıalioğlu is very dynamic. She offers spot-on advice and opinions and has profound understanding of clients’ needs.’

‘The team is composed of highly sophisticated lawyers, with an international mindset and great experience. They are used to working with both international and Turkish clients in an international environment. They are extremely nice to work with. Lawyering skills are top-notch at all levels.’

‘Sedar Paksoy has incomparable experience as a litigator. Wise, always calm, composed and analytical under pressure. Simel Sarıalioğlu is also a great strategist, a hard-worker and very good at grasping the priorities and pivotal point of cases. Very client-oriented, pragmatic and easy to work with.’

‘Doğuhan Uygun provides clear and detailed explanations on matters, in addition to providing options and advice on each of the potential routes, prior to making the final decision.’

Turkey > Restructuring and insolvency Tier 1

Paksoy houses a thriving restructuring group that acts for debtors, creditors, sponsors and other stakeholders across a wide range of loan restructurings and insolvency proceedings. Increasingly, the full-service practice is also engaged to advise on non-performing loan (NPL) portfolios and distressed M&A transactions. Banking and finance head Sera Somay co-leads the team together with corporate and M&A head Elvan Aziz and capital markets specialist Ömer Çollak. The team also draws on a sizeable pool of counsels, including litigator Doğuhan Uygun and finance and projects-focused Zekican Samlı.

Practice head(s):

Elvan Aziz; Sera Somay; Ömer Çollak

Other key lawyers:


‘Proactive partners and a strong network, high willingness to explore new sectors, areas and opportunities.’

Turkey > Competition Tier 2

The ‘effective, patient, commercial, technically impeccable‘ the team at Paksoy advises a roster of major multinational clients on matters ranging from merger control, internal compliance checks and antitrust investigations to dawn raids and competition litigation. The group’s client base spans the automotive, tech, chemicals, media and entertainment, investment, logistics and pharmaceuticals sectors. The team is led by M. Togan Turan, who brings expertise to merger control filings and the negotiation of extensive remedy plans with the Competition Authority. Other key figures include counsel Gülçin Dere, who draws on a background as a chief competition expert at the TCA, and Büşra Aktüre, who was promoted to senior associate in January 2023.

Practice head(s):

M. Togan Turan

Other key lawyers:


‘Paksoy’s competition law team is sensible and pragmatic. They approach transactions with a commercial sense that makes them a joy to work with.’

‘Best Turkish competition team, hands-down. Effective, patient, commercial, technically impeccable and great track record. Trusted partners for many years.’

‘Togan Turan is a leader and one of the best in his field. Excellent client management and technical skills.’

‘We regularly work with Paksoy. Paksoy works fast and finds pragmatic solutions even in complex transactions.’

‘Büşra Aktüre is always on top of things and provides client-orientated and pragmatic solutions.’

Key clients

Agrofert Group

Apollo Management

Biletix (a Ticketmaster group company)


Clayton, Dubilier & Rice and TPG

Concentrix Corporation

Farfetch Holdings and Richemont

IPSO Tarım


LetterOne Holdings

Microsoft Corporation

Oaktree Capital Management

Olin and Mitsui

Saudi Electronic Gaming Holding Company


TOGG – Türkiye’nin Otomobil Girişim


Work highlights

  • Advised Stellantis on the merger filing for the sale of its shares in its Turkish distribution subsidiary to Tofaş, its joint venture with Koç Holding.
  • Advised Microsoft on the merger filing for its acquisition of Activision Blizzard.
  • Advised TOGG on competition law matters concerning its cooperation with TRUGO-Shell and Bosch.

Turkey > Employment Tier 2

Elvan Aziz runs the employment practice at Paksoy, which adopts a multidisciplinary approach and works closely with the firm’s M&A, corporate and commercial, tax, litigation and compliance departments. The group is engaged in a range of labour matters including the drafting of employment contracts, the preparation of warning and defence letters, bonus schemes, personnel handbooks and other matters. Aziz herself is particularly active in advising clients on C-level hirings and terminations.

Practice head(s):

Elvan Aziz

Other key lawyers:

Gülce Saydam Pehlivan

Key clients


Cisco Systems







Mercedes-Benz Financial Services


Multi Color Corporation




Sisal Lottery

The Bank of New York Mellon Corporation

The Peninsula Hotel Istanbul

Vibrantz Technologies

Willis Towers Watson


Work highlights

  • Advising The Peninsula Hotel on all of its labour and employment law matters from the construction to the operational phase.
  • Advising Yazaki on the negotiation of a collective bargaining agreement with the Türk Metal trade union and individual employment-related matters.
  • Advising Sisal Lottery on a range of labour and employment law matters, including employment agreement templates for different roles.

Turkey > Energy Tier 2

Paksoy frequently handles matters relating to project financing and development, construction and supply contracts, and drafting power purchase agreements. The team, which is led by the 'outstanding' Sera Somay, is also experienced at representing high-profile lenders on the restructuring process of energy projects in Turkey. Zekican Samlı regularly advises investors and consultants on a variety of regulatory matters concerning licensing, PPPs, and investments.

Practice head(s):

Sera Somay

Other key lawyers:


‘Their key strength is in the area of banking and finance, including in respect of energy transactions. The team is on top of the latest developments and are very knowledgeable.’

‘Sera Somay is outstanding. She is very commercial, really knows the market and provides practical and prompt advice.’

‘Zekican Samlı has been very constructive and responsive. He is very easy to work with.’

Key clients

AKA Ausfuhrkredit-Gesellschaft mbH

Alcazar Energy

Deutsche Zentral-Genossenschaftsbank, Frankfurt am Main

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development

Electricité de France


ING Bank

Lidya Minig

Zorlu Group

Work highlights

  • Advised Zorlu Group on the USD 375 m financing of Osmangazi Power Distribution, an electric distribution company operating in Turkey.
  • Advised Alcazar Energy on the establishment of an unlicensed power plant development and financing structure for industrial facilities aiming to establish self-consumption units.
  • Advising Electricité de France in relation to the Turkish leg of the acquisition of GE Steam Power’s nuclear activities worldwide.

Turkey > IT and telecoms Tier 2

Paksoy has a solid track record in advising on e-commerce and competition law matters, among other areas, and is also recognised for assisting with M&A transactions for clients in the software and technology sectors. Stéphanie Beghe Sönmez and Sera Somay co-head the practice; Sönmez brings expertise in data protection and cybersecurity issues, and Somay handles regulatory work pertaining to the fintech sector. Merve Kurdak and Zeynep Toma are names to note.

Practice head(s):

Stéphanie Beghe Sönmez; Sera Somay

Other key lawyers:

Merve Kurdak; Zeynep Tom; Melisa Sevinç


‘Merve Kurdak and Melisa Sevinç are great at navigating the complexities of the Turkish filing requirements.’

‘The Paksoy team is professional, dedicated, and result oriented.’

‘The work was handled very professionally and with short turnaround times.’

‘They have a clear footprint in privacy, e-commerce, and IT law with a good reputation across market.’

Key clients




Fresenius Medical Care



QNB Finansbank

Samsun Yurt Savunma

Turkish Mercantile Exchange (TMEX)

Work highlights

  • Advising Audi on a data project involving the deployment of dash-cam equipped vehicles in Turkey.
  • Advised Fresenius Medical Care on information security and data localisation issues relating to the manufacturing of medical devices.
  • Advised QNB Finansbank on information technology agreements for the licensing of a digital banking solution.

Turkey > Project finance/projects Tier 2

Lawyers at Paksoy strike the right note with their ‘excellent industry knowledge’. The team is well-equipped to handle energy and natural resources work, while it also advises on infrastructure-related matters, including airports, roads and healthcare projects. Sera Somay brings to bear extensive expertise in banking and finance, projects, and energy and natural resources – she notably heads all three practices. Counsel Zekican Samlı, who specialises in energy, infrastructure, PPPs and construction, provides support.

Practice head(s):

Sera Somay

Other key lawyers:

Zekican Samlı; Bülent Öztürk


‘Paksoy’s easy-to-contact way of working and close advisory manner helped, and keeps helping, us in various challenges.’

‘Associates Zekican Samlı and Bülent Öztürk, along with partner Sera Somay, have continuously been available to various internal stakeholders of our company. The team provided us with useful insights due to their expertise of the local regulations, while also advising us as to international lawyers.’

‘Capable team including lawyers who are highly knowledgeable about project finance.’

‘We worked directly with Sera Somay and she was always reachable and responsive.’

‘I work with the Paksoy team on many export and project finance transactions, in particular in the area of renewable energies. This team always delivers the highest quality and never misses any deadline. It combines an excellent knowledge of the relevant laws with excellent industry knowledge.’

‘I regularly work with Sera Somay as partner. It is a wonderful, efficient and highly qualified team.’

Key clients

Alcazar Energy

Borusan Machinery and Power Systems

China Export & Credit Insurance Corporation (Sinosure)

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)


ING Bank

Lidya Madencilik

Turkey > Real estate and construction Tier 2

Over the past year Paksoy’s practice showed particular activity in the hospitality and real estate investment spheres. The team also advises on M&A-related real estate issues, leasing transactions, construction and contentious work. Key contact Elvan Aziz spearheads both the real estate and corporate departments and brings significant transactional expertise to the table. The group also draws on banking and finance specialist Sera Somay and newly promoted counsel Zekican Samlı, who specialises in energy and natural resources.

Practice head(s):

Elvan Aziz; Sera Somay

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

Alcazar Energy


The Peninsula Hotel Istanbul

Samsun Yurt Savunma

The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels

Turkey > Compliance

Paksoy frequently handles internal investigations by administrative authorities, advising on a range of anti-bribery and anti-corruption compliance checks. The team is led by Serdar Paksoy and Stéphanie Beghe Sonmez.

The firm: Paksoy is an independent full-service law firm in Istanbul focused on helping clients in a wide range of legal matters: cross-border investments, international business transactions, investigations, compliance and disputes. Established in 1997, Paksoy stands today as one of the strongest local legal brands in Turkey, focusing on numerous practice groups and sectors.

Areas of practice
Antitrust and competition: Paksoy advises on antitrust clearance for M&As before the Turkish Competition Authority and provides assistance in antitrust investigations and counselling with respect to commercial agreements.

Banking and finance: Paksoy has considerable experience in banking and finance work advising international and domestic investment and commercial banks, ECAs, borrowers and sponsors in leveraged and acquisition finance, asset finance and structured finance.

Capital markets: Paksoy advises financial institutions, investment banks, underwriters, managers and issuers in domestic and international markets on equity, debt and equity-linked transactions.

Compliance and investigations: Paksoy advises clients on anti-bribery and corruption reviews and investigations by public bodies and conducts compliance checks in connection with FCPA and UK Bribery Act.

Corporate and commercial: Paksoy advises listed and privately held entities on general corporate and contracts law, IT, licensing, marketing and distribution/agency agreements and corporate governance issues.

Data protection: Paksoy advises clients on data protection matters in the context of the new legal regime by drafting privacy policies, revising standard contracts, assessing preparedness for the implementation of new legal constraints and bringing existing databases into compliance.

Energy and natural resources: Paksoy advises leading global and domestic clients on major projects in Turkey in connection with concession and licence-based energy and natural resources deals.

Infrastructure, PPP and construction: Paksoy has significant experience in PPPs, representing clients in major public assets and infrastructures, advises contractors and owners in projects involving construction, operation and maintenance of complex structures, plants, infrastructure systems, shopping malls and mine operation sites.

Islamic finance: Paksoy has been at the forefront of Islamic product development in Turkey and advises the sovereign, conventional and Islamic financial institutions, investors, and corporate borrowers on all aspects of Islamic finance.

Labour and employment: Paksoy provides clients with advice on all aspects of individual and collective labour law, including localisation and drafting employment agreements and bylaws, as well as termination-related documentation and outsourcing agreements.

Litigation and dispute resolution: Paksoy acts for clients in litigation and arbitration work covering areas of contract, tort, fraud, shareholder disputes, procurement matters, product liability, employment, competition, bankruptcy and insolvency.

M&A: Paksoy provides advice to global clients on cross-border transactions and domestic investments in a wide range of sectors, represents investors from strategic to private equity houses and provides sell-side advisory services.

Project finance: Paksoy advises the lenders, sponsors, project companies, contractors and operators in various types of projects including power, oil and gas, mining, infrastructure, healthcare and shopping mall projects.

Real estate: Paksoy handles a wide variety of real estate development projects including joint venture and revenue sharing systems, sale and purchase of property, long-term leasehold contracts, construction loans and leases of residential and commercial properties.

Tax and fiscal services: Paksoy provides clients advice on all types of taxation events, on corporate, income tax, VAT and stamp duty as well as transfer pricing, expatriate taxation and international tax structurings.

Department Name Email Telephone
Antitrust and competition M Togan Turan
Banking and finance Sera Somay
Capital markets Ömer Çollak
Compliance and investigations Serdar Paksoy
Corporate and commercial Elvan Aziz
Corporate and commercial M Togan Turan
Corporate and commercial Stéphanie Beghe Sönmez
Data protection Stéphanie Beghe Sönmez
Islamic finance Sera Somay
Labour and employment Elvan Aziz
Litigation and dispute resolution Serdar Paksoy
M&A Elvan Aziz
M&A M Togan Turan
M&A Stéphanie Beghe Sönmez
Real estate Elvan Aziz
Tax and fiscal services Sansal Erbacioglu
Photo Name Position Profile
Elvan Aziz photo Ms Elvan Aziz Elvan Aziz is the partner heading the corporate practice of the firm,…
Stéphanie Beghe Sonmez photo Ms Stéphanie Beghe Sonmez Stéphanie Beghe Sönmez is the partner, regularly advises on foreign law aspects…
Ömer Çollak photo Mr Ömer Çollak Ömer Çollak is the partner heading the capital markets practice of the…
Serdar Paksoy photo Mr Serdar Paksoy Serdar Paksoy is the founder and senior partner of the firm. For…
Sera Somay photo Ms Sera Somay Sera Somay is the partner heading the banking and finance practice of…
M. Togan Turan photo Mr M. Togan Turan Togan Turan is the partner heading the competition practice of the firm…
Number of lawyers : 70+
Contact : Serdar Paksoy (founder/senior partner)