Firm Profile > Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados > Sao Paulo, Brazil

Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados
04551-060 SAO PAULO, SP

Capital markets Tier 1

Satisfied clients of Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados’ capital markets practice reserve particular praise for its ‘extremely commercial approach’ and ‘great business vision’. In addition to its business sense, the group’s ‘strong availability’ and ‘ability to focus on solutions rather than getting stuck on challenges’ are also held up as significant plus points. A strong performer in both debt and equity deals, the firm enjoys close links with local and multinational banks and corporate issuers. Among its debt highlights, the team advised BB Securities and BNP Paribas on Rio Oil Finance Trust’s $600m notes offering. On the equity front, it advised the underwriters on Hapvida Participações e Investimentos’ high-profile IPO and secondary offering, totalling R$3.4bn. Group co-heads Alexandre Gossn Barreto and Joaquim José Aceturi de Oliveira are jointly highlighted as being ‘adept at leading deals’, due to their ability to remain ‘calm and collected at all times, while focusing on priority issues’. Other names to note include ‘savvy deal-makerMaurício Teixeira dos Santos and ‘stand-out associateJúlia Lobo, who is an ‘extremely sharp and tireless advocate’. Igor Rego was recently promoted to partner, while Daniel Facó left to join Trench Rossi Watanabe.

Corporate and M&A Tier 1

Major domestic and multinational companies turn to Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados for advice and representation in high-value corporate transactions. 2018 was a busy year for the team, which has carved out its place among the top corporate law firms in Brazil. Its practice spans the gamut of corporate matters and deals, and its expertise in public M&A is of particular note, thanks to the combined strengths of its corporate and capital markets practices. In an illustration of its position as a go-to firm for major deals, Maria Cristina Cescon and Darkson Delmondes Galvão acted for Suzano Papel e Celulose on its high-profile merger with Fibria, which created the world's largest wood pulp producer. Highlights on the sale side included the team's representation of General Shopping Brasil in the sale of Internacional Shopping Guarulhos to the Gazit Group; Ronald Herscovici and Daniel Laudisio were the lead partners. Marcos Rafael Flesch co-heads the department with Cescon; other key team members include Fernanda Bastos Buhatem, Roberto Augusto Nogueira de Pary and Ana Carolina Castro Reis Passos. The group also counts a number of experienced senior associates, including Fernanda Cirne Montorfano, Luciana de Castro Mares Torres and Juliana Vianna Lacreta Gobbi.

Banking and finance Tier 2

At Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados, the 'partners are always available and fully involved in deals', according to sources. The practice, which is traditionally best known for its expertise in project finance and complex debt restructuring transactions, had an impressive year on the sovereign front. Most notably, Rio de Janeiro-based Maurício Teixeira dos Santos advised BB Securities and BNP Paribas on the local aspects of Rio Oil Finance Trust's $600m notes offering, which allowed the State of Rio de Janeiro to repay debts incurred to fund its employees' pension fund. In Sao Paulo, high-profile figure Ronald Herscovici, whose 'knowledge and behaviour towards counter parties are an asset to any client', paired up with Daniel Laudisio, who has ‘an eye for detail’, to advise Suzano Papel e Celulose on a $6.9bn bridge loan facility to fund the acquisition of Fibria - a transaction that represented the largest unsecured acquisition-financing in Brazil to date. In a significant cross-office collaboration, Sao Paulo's Alexandre Gossn Barreto acted alongside Rio de Janeiro-based project finance specialist Rafael Baleroni to act for Deutsche Bank on a $130m loan to GTB-TBG Holdings. Other names to note include Joaquim José Aceturi de Oliveira and Ana Paula Calil in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro-based Eduardo Kuhlmann Abrantes.

Competition and antitrust Tier 2

The 'client-oriented', 'skilled' and 'experienced professionals' at Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados combine 'outstanding technical knowledge with a user-friendly approach'. It has a considerable market share of merger cases before CADE, and is well versed in complex merger filings. Among a long list of recent highlights was the team's representation of Ferrous Resources in its merger with a subsidiary of Vale, in a transaction which was contested by third parties. The team is also active in cartel investigations, and stands out for its impressive track record in leniency applications. 'Excellent lawyer' Ricardo Lara Gaillard 'is able to provide accurate legal advice that considers what is best for the business'. Joyce Midori Honda and associate Leonardo Mansur Lunardi Danesi 'act with great professionalism and competence' and are 'always attentive to detail'.

Hydrocarbons Tier 2

A historically strong performer in oil-and-gas deals, Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados also attracts praise for its non-transactional practice, with sources commending its ‘breadth of expertise across the oil-and-gas life cycle, including regulatory and antitrust issues’. In a recent example of its growing regulatory prominence, the firm was engaged to advise BNDES on both the structuring of the privatisation of MSGÁS and on the restructuring of the gas distribution regulatory framework in the state of Mato Grosso do Sul. The team, which ‘combines genuine industry specialists with a practical approach’, is led jointly by Rafael Baleroni, who demonstrates ‘in-depth knowledge of key issues throughout the oil-and-gas chain, from downstream to upstream and offshore assets’, and the ‘very responsive and collaborative’ Maurício Teixeira dos Santos.

Projects and infrastructure Tier 2

Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados stands out for its project finance expertise and recently advised Banco BTG Pactual and Itaú BBA on the R$220m project financing of five solar power plants. The team also handles project developments and assisted BNDES with the structuring of two PPP projects for the modernisation, expansion, operation and maintenance of public lighting networks. Practice head Maurício Teixeira dos Santos has a 'unique understanding of various aspects of cross-border financing transactions, including issues that are key to driving investor demand as well as rating-agency criteria'. Karin Yamauti Hatanaka is another name to note for project financings.

Bankruptcy and restructuring Tier 3

The restructuring group at Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados is led by Fábio Rosas and benefits from the firm’s strong banking, corporate, capital markets and litigation practices. For example, the team often works closely with colleagues in the corporate department to assist investors in distressed transactions. Also of note is the team’s particular expertise in the oil-and-gas sector; in this space, the team has notable experience in domestic and cross-border restructurings. Rafael Baptista Baleroni is also recommended. Tiago Lopes left for Lollato Lopes Rangel Ribeiro Advogados.

Compliance Tier 3

Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados 'has leveraged its existing prominence in capital markets and other areas to build a solid compliance team'. The department receives plaudits for its 'great focus' and 'interest in understand the specific needs of the client'. Its workload spans compliance programs, due diligence, investigations and legal opinions, and its clients include domestic and international companies and foreign law firms. Luciano Inácio de Souza was promoted to partner in February 2019 and is recommended.

Electricity Tier 3

The ‘reliable and business-focused’ group at Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados provides an ‘outstanding service’ and -as one satisfied client notes- ‘it is especially creative on corporate issues’; the practice also handles project finance, project development and regulatory matters. Infrastructure specialists Maurício Teixeira dos Santos and Roberto Mario Amaral Lima Neto are the key contacts and together they assisted Enel Group with its R$7.1bn acquisition of power distributor Eletropaulo Metropolitana, which represented the first hostile takeover of a Brazilian electric utility company.

Labour and employment Tier 3

The 'very engaged and committed' team at Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados has 'great know-how and experience about all labour matters'. The ‘very responsive and knowledgeableGisela da Silva Freire heads the team, which also includes 'excellent labour litigation lawyer' Gustavo da Silva Souto and recommended senior associate Viviane de Azevedo Rodrigues.

Mining Tier 3

Traditionally best known for its strength in corporate finance matters, Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados bolstered its regulatory and operational capability in 2019 with its acquisition of Minas-based mining boutique Mendo de Souza Advogados Associados. Highlights included advising Vale on several matters, including regulatory issues related to the operation of its Tamanduá Mine. The combined group, which also counts Anglo American, Orion Mine Finance and Samarco among its key clients, is led jointly by Frederico Viana Rodrigues and Marcelo Mendo Gomes de Souza.

Tax Tier 3

Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados has a strong transactional tax practice, which benefits from the firm's leading M&A department. Highlights included Ramon Machado Castilho's advice to Shell on the tax aspects of the sale of its stake in Comgás, and Roberto Barrieu's advice to Suzano Papel e Celulose on its merger with Fibria. The team also provides non-transactional advisory work and representation in tax litigation, often for household name clients, both domestic and international. Hugo Barreto Sodre Leal heads the tax litigation team. Renato Batiston and Rafael Santos made partner in 2019. The department also counts a number of experienced associates, including Andreza de Souza Ribeiro Fonseca.

Dispute resolution (including White-collar crime) Tier 4

'Always available to discuss and align strategy', Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados' dispute resolution lawyers act for Brazilian and international clients in corporate and commercial litigation, arbitration and mediation. With a full-service offering, the firm can staff cases with experts in a range of fields, including M&A and banking. Praise is levelled at 'very good lawyer' Helena Najjar Abdo and Carlos Braga, who 'finds new perspectives'. Senior associate Mauricio Fabbri is also noted. Gabriel Seijo Leal de Figueiredo focuses on contractual and M&A disputes, with additional expertise in bankruptcy and shipping litigation.

Real estate Tier 4

The highly-regarded team at Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados advises on urban and rural real estate, and collaborates with colleagues in the corporate, capital markets and litigation departments to provide a comprehensive service to its clients. Marcos Lopes Prado is the key partner.

Environment Tier 6

Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados frequently defends clients against class actions. An example was acting for Sany do Brasil concerning the installation of an industrial plant in an allegedly preserved area. Associate Rebeca Stefanini Pavlovsky is 'experienced and committed'.


Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados' technology and and intellectual property group is led by a rising star: senior associate Luiz Felipe Di Sessa. He recently led assistance to software company Avalara concerning IT agreements.

Transport and shipping

Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados offers 'clear communication' when advising on shipping finance and transactional matters. For example, the team assisted ABN Amro, as agent to the senior lenders, with the financing for the construction and acquisition of five open hatch general cargo vessels. Rafael Baleroni is 'smart and capable'.

Latin America: International firms > International arbitration > Local practitioners of note (by country)

Pinheiro Neto Advogados handles a steady stream of multimillion-dollar ICC arbitration. Gilberto Giusti and Renato Stephan Grion are highly recommended; the latter is the co-chair of the Arbitration and Mediation Committee of CESA. Ferro, Castro Neves, Daltro & Gomide AdvogadosMarcelo Roberto Ferro regularly acts as arbitrator and counsel, and is particularly experience in handling disputes arising from corporate transactions. L.O. Baptista AdvogadosAdriana BraghettaRafael Francisco Alves and Maurício Almeida Prado are 'highly specialised lawyers with high capacity to bring solutions to resolve high complexity disputes'. Fernando Marcondes regularly acts as an arbitrator in construction and real estate-related matters. Recent caseload features a range of construction and infrastructure disputes as well as M&A-related matters in the oil and gas sector. Machado Meyer Sendacz e Opice AdvogadosEliane Cristina Carvalho recently handled a series of disputes arising from M&A transactions and is representing Air Products Brasil in arbitration proceedings initiated by Air Liquide. Eduardo Damião Gonçalves at Mattos Filho, Veiga Filho, Marrey Jr. e Quiroga Advogados is singled out for his 'outstanding technical skills and deep understanding of the corporate world', and his ability to 'simplify complex problems gives clients great confidence and comfort'. Gonçalves regularly acts as counsel and arbitrator in a range of domestic and international disputes, and Flávio Spaccaquerche Barbosa is 'a well experienced lawyer with solid technical background'. At TozziniFreire AdvogadosFernando Eduardo Serec assists clients from a diverse range of sectors and has experience acting as both party counsel and arbitrator. Huck, Otranto, Camargo Advogados' 'brilliant' team handles both commercial and investor-state arbitration proceedings, and is active in the construction, pharmaceutical and energy sectors. Fabio Peixinho Gomes Corrêa is 'an absolute joy to work with', while Hermes Marcelo Huck  and Rogério Carmona Bianco are 'very focused on details of the case without losing sight of the big picture'. Marcelo Muriel at Muriel Medici Franco Advogados is 'certainly one of the standout Brazilian practitioners, with a healthy portfolio of disputes and great ICC arbitration experience'. Stocche Forbes AdvogadosRafael Passaro is recommended for contractual disputes and disputes involving administrative proceedings. Andrade & Fichtner AdvogadosJosé Antonio Fichtner acts as arbitrator and counsel in corporate and contractual arbitral and judicial disputes. André Abbud at BMA - Barbosa, Müssnich, Aragão is 'an excellent expert in arbitration' and 'knows his clients' business well'. Cescon, Barrieu, Flesch & Barreto Advogados' team has 'a creative mind to think out of the box, suggesting solutions that may seem different but are perfectly aligned with the needs of the company'; co-heads Carlos David Albuquerque Braga and Gabriel Seijo Leal de Figueiredo are recommended. Other names to note include Lefosse AdvogadosPedro Maciel who is 'a superstar in the Brazilian arbitration market' and Lobo de Rizzo AdvogadosLuis Fernando Guerrero who is singled out for his 'client-oriented' approach.


Cescon Barrieu is one of Brazil’s leading law firms. The lawyers stand out for their strong commitment to the representation of clients’ interests and for their work in highly sophisticated, groundbreaking matters. The firm’s goal is to be the clients’ law firm of choice for their most complex legal matters and most strategic transactions and disputes.

Main areas of practice

Corporate law and governance, mergers and acquisitions, and private equity: the firm is often retained by potential targets and boards of directors for representation in connection with mergers, acquisitions, tender offers, de-listings and other corporate transactions, as well as matters involving antitrust and anti-corruption laws. The M&A and private equity practices are recognized as Brazil’s leading practices by any measure. The clients come to the firm whenever the scope of a transaction, no matter how large or small, is strategic and the stakes are high.

Capital markets and investments funds: the capital markets team is recognized as Brazil’s most experienced and far-reaching. It represents the world’s leading financial institutions, public and private corporations, hedge funds, asset managers and entrepreneurs, in connection with their most complex domestic and cross-border securities transactions, including IPOs and other equity offers, tender offers, debt-offerings, derivatives, structured products, mutual funds, receivables funds and securitization.

Its vast experience with the Brazilian Securities Commission (CVM) provides the firm with insight into important regulatory aspects of registered offers in Brazil that may be critical in successfully completing a transaction.

Banking and finance: the firm advises a wide range of clients in the roles of lenders, borrowers, trustees, rating agencies and others in connection with syndicated bank facilities, trade financing, leveraged investments, structured financing, DIP financing and derivatives. The firm also regularly represents clients who trade in banks and other financings in the secondary market, such as hedge funds and other asset managers.

Insolvency and restructuring: the team has wide-ranging experience in assisting clients in connection with complex debt workouts, corporate restructurings and bankruptcy proceedings, with a particular focus on representing financial creditors. The firm has vast experience in credit recovery, enforcement of collateral and other court-assisted proceedings in a wide range of industries.

Litigation and Arbitration:  the disputes team is recognized for its breadth of experience and talent at simplifying even the most complicated cases. We are retained by clients from all industries to litigate their most critical cases.

Our lawyers are specialized in high-stakes litigation involving M&A transactions, commercial contract disputes, environmental cases, and technology and IP litigation. We represent clients in international and domestic arbitrations. We have handled several landmark corporate arbitration cases and some of the most complex arbitrations in construction, infrastructure, M&A, technology, and other matters. Our lawyers are also retained to act as arbitrators, expert witnesses, and co-counsel in multi-jurisdiction arbitrations.

Our client list includes multinationals, private and public corporations, investment funds, financial institutions, and entrepreneurs who come to us for assistance with a variety of disputes.

Project finance: the project finance practice is recognized as a market leader in Brazil. The firm’s team has advised on groundbreaking transactions, such as the first greenfield limited recourse, cross-border project finance, the first non-recourse oil production-based project finance, the first cross-border project bond and the first cross-border oil royalty-backed bonds.

Infrastructure and project finance: the firm has a first-class practice in the development of infrastructure projects across all its sectors, such as energy, telecom, oil and gas, water and wastewater, ports and navigation, airports, railways, mining and toll roads. The firm provides advice on all phases of a project, from its conception to its financing, assisting companies in structuring projects, participating in bidding procedures and in claims with the regulatory agencies and granting authorities. The firm has a multidisciplinary team specialized in drafting and negotiating project contracts, such as EPC contracts, offtake contracts and O&M agreements, as well as in EPC contract management, assisting clients with managing claims during the construction.

Mining:  the team has a comprehensive knowledge of the sector’s entire production chain and in-depth expertise in dealing with its main players. We provide regulatory and negotiation counsel to mining and financing companies, in addition to regulatory and business advice to mining companies within M&A, project finance and capital markets transactions. The Cescon Barrieu team also advises autonomously on regulatory matters and contracts with joint venture partners, suppliers, or service providers.

The expertise of our mining lawyers, as well as their integration with all of our practice areas, enables our partners and associates to have a broader view of their projects, identifying possible structures and tailor made solutions for our clients and deals, always adhering to the highest quality standards.

Government relations: the firm combines corporate experience and strategic location in Brasilia to provide legal advice to clients in the dialogue between companies and the public sector. The firm’s objective is to translate to clients the main legislative issues and public policies and their respective impact over the economy and on the business sector. Clients include multinationals, domestic and foreign corporations, investment funds, financial institutions and entrepreneurs in several sectors such as health, pharmaceutical, mining, fertilizers and technology.

Antitrust: the firm combines broad experience in strategic corporate transactions with complex cartel investigations to form one of Brazil’s leading antitrust practice groups. The firm works closely with its M&A, private equity and litigation groups to represent clients in a wide variety of domestic and cross-border matters across all industries.

Compliance and anti-corruption: the firm advises on a wide range of compliance and anti-corruption matters, including investigations involving anti-corruption and anti-money laundering laws. The compliance and anti-corruption lawyers help the firm’s clients identify and anticipate tendencies in regulatory standards that may be critical to their business.

Technology and intellectual property: the firm’s practice is recognized for advising clients in connection with complex IP and technology transactions. The team is also active in advising clients in a wide variety of regulatory matters faced by companies in the tech sector, including related to data protection and the legal framework for fintechs. Clients include technology and media companies, startups, retailers, venture capital and private equity funds, financial institutions, electronic platforms, serial investors and entrepreneurs.

Tax: tax has been the cornerstone of the firm’s practice since its inception. The team of experienced tax lawyers advises on a broad range of domestic and international tax matters in financings, acquisitions, mergers, investment funds and international trade, as well as financial products.

Labor: clients come to the firm’s labor law department for complex labor law issues rather than their day-to-day labor claims. The firm has over the years assisted clients with strategic and complex lawsuits, created compensation and incentive programs and assisted them in dealing with trade unions.

Real estate: the real estate practice is at the forefront of the marketplace. The firm advises a myriad of clients on some of the most complex and innovative real estate transactions, including land acquisitions, development, financing, joint ventures and restructurings.

Other areas of practice: Environmental, agribusiness, insurance and reinsurance, regulated industries such as power, oil and gas, renewable energy, maritime, transportation, logistics and shipping.

Department Name Email Telephone
Antitrust Ricardo Gaillard
Antitrust Joyce Honda
Litigation and Arbitration Carlos Braga
Litigation and Arbitration Helena Abdo
Litigation and Arbitration Gabriel Seijo
Banking and finance Alexandre Barreto
Banking and finance Ronald Herscovici
Investment funds Igor Rego
Investment funds Eduardo Herszkowicz
Capital markets Joaquim Oliveira
Capital markets Eduardo Kuhlmann Abrantes
Capital markets Ana Paula Calil
Capital markets Daniel Laudisio
Compliance and anti-corruption Luciano Inácio de Souza
Corporate law and governance Marcos Rafael Flesch
Corporate law and governance Maria Cristina Cescon
Corporate law and governance Carlos Augusto Junqueira
Corporate law and governance Fernanda Bastos Buhatem
Corporate law and governance Roberto Pary
Corporate law and governance Ana Carolina Passos
Corporate law and governance Marina Prado
Corporate law and governance Darkson Galvão
Corporate law and governance Cristina Bueno
Infrastructure and Project Finance / Energy Roberto Lima
Infrastructure and Project Finance / Energy Rafael Baleroni
Infrastructure and Project Finance Maurício Santos
Infrastructure and Project Finance Fernando Gomes
Insolvency/restructuring Fábio Rosas
Labor Gisela da Silva Freire
Infrastructure and Project Finance Karin Yamauti
Real Estate Marcos Prado
Tax Roberto Barrieu
Tax Hugo Leal
Tax Rafael Santos
Tax Aldo de Paula Junior
Tax Renato Batiston
Tax André Alves de Melo
Tax Sarah Barbassa
Mining Marcelo Mendo
Corporate M&A / Capital Markets / Mining Frederico Rodrigues
Technology and IP Luiz Felipe Di Sessa
Of Counsel Alécia Bicalho
Of Counsel Mauricio Pellegrino
Photo Name Position Profile
Mrs Helena Abdo  photo Mrs Helena Abdo Partner
Mr Joaquim José Aceturi de Oliveira  photo Mr Joaquim José Aceturi de Oliveira Founding partner
Mr Carlos David Albuquerque Braga  photo Mr Carlos David Albuquerque Braga Partner
Mr Roberto Mario Amaral Lima Neto  photo Mr Roberto Mario Amaral Lima Neto Partner
Mrs Sarah Mila Barbassa  photo Mrs Sarah Mila Barbassa Partner
Mr Hugo Barreto Sodre Leal  photo Mr Hugo Barreto Sodre Leal Partner
Mr Roberto Barrieu photo Mr Roberto Barrieu Founding partner
Mr Renato Batiston  photo Mr Renato Batiston Partner
Mrs Alecia Bicalho  photo Mrs Alecia Bicalho Of counsel
Mrs Ana Paula Calil  photo Mrs Ana Paula Calil Partner
Mrs Ana Carolina Castro Reis Passos  photo Mrs Ana Carolina Castro Reis Passos Partner
Mrs Maria Cristina Cescon  photo Mrs Maria Cristina Cescon Founding partner
Mr Darkson Delmondes Galvão  photo Mr Darkson Delmondes Galvão Partner
Mr Luiz Felipe Di Sessa  photo Mr Luiz Felipe Di Sessa Associate
Mr Marcos Rafael Flesch  photo Mr Marcos Rafael Flesch Founding partner
Mr Alexandre Gossn Barreto  photo Mr Alexandre Gossn Barreto Founding partner
Mr Ronald Herscovici  photo Mr Ronald Herscovici Founding partner
Mr Eduardo José Herszkowicz  photo Mr Eduardo José Herszkowicz Partner
Mr Ricardo Lara Gaillard  photo Mr Ricardo Lara Gaillard Partner
Mr Daniel Laudisio  photo Mr Daniel Laudisio Partner
Mr Marcos Lopes Prado  photo Mr Marcos Lopes Prado Partner
Mrs Joyce Midori Honda  photo Mrs Joyce Midori Honda Partner
Mr Roberto Augusto Nogueira de Pary  photo Mr Roberto Augusto Nogueira de Pary Partner
Mr Igor Rego  photo Mr Igor Rego Partner
Mr Fábio Rosas  photo Mr Fábio Rosas Partner
Mrs Rebeca Stefanini Pavlovsky  photo Mrs Rebeca Stefanini Pavlovsky Associate
Mrs Karin Yamauti Hatanaka  photo Mrs Karin Yamauti Hatanaka Partner
Mrs Gisela da Silva Freire  photo Mrs Gisela da Silva Freire Partner
Mrs Marina da Silva Prado  photo Mrs Marina da Silva Prado Partner
Mrs Cristina de Freitas Bueno  photo Mrs Cristina de Freitas Bueno Partner
Mr Fernando de Melo Gomes  photo Mr Fernando de Melo Gomes Partner
Mr Aldo de Paula Junior  photo Mr Aldo de Paula Junior Partner
Other fee-earners : 185
Partners : 40