Pérez Bustamante & Ponce maintains its standing as one of the leading firms for real estate work, advising several high-profile clients in the transport, tourism and pharmaceutical sectors on a range of regional projects. With public-private partnerships representing a key area of work for the firm, the team recently advised Duranports in relation to an investment contract with the Ecuadorian government, regarding the design, construction and operation of a private barge port terminal. Leadership of the team is divided between Sandra Reed, who is recommended for project financing and joint venture work; and Diego Perez, who focuses on the negotiation and implementation of leases and concession agreements. Other key figures include Juan Manuel Marchán, and senior associates Nicolás Maldonado and Estefanía López. The team also welcomed the arrival of associate Sebastián Cortez from Noboa, Peña & Torres, Abogados in January 2021, strengthening the practice’s offering with regard to energy-and-natural-resource infrastructure projects.
Pérez Bustamante & Ponce remains one of the leading practices in the Ecuadorian tax space, with a client list that features a range of prominent multinational companies including Sony, Unilever, and General Motors. The department is led by Juan Gabriel Reyes who is recommended for his expertise in tax planning and structuring matters, and also handles tax controversies. Recent highlights saw Reyes working in conjunction with Juan Francisco Carrasco to secure Quiport’s right to seek an income tax exemption despite the SRI’s objections; the case was won in a series of district and national court decisions. Carrasco also has a particular niche in telecoms-related tax matters which saw the pair team up to successfully represent Otecel in a judicial action challenging a $9.2m income tax assessment for fiscal year 2016. Rounding out the partner-level team is tax, customs and international trade specialist Carmen Simone-Lasso; she has particular expertise in both tax and customs litigation and a focus on investments and international trade matters relating to the automotive sector; her recent mandates include advising Cervecería Nacional in the largest investment project by a company in Ecuador’s food and beverage industry. Key associate support comes from practice directors Nicolás Maldonado-Zambrano and Alejandro Páez-Vallejo (an October 2022 promotion), and senior Jeannette Jarrin-Sevilla.