Firm Profile > Santamarina y Steta > Mexico City, Mexico

Santamarina y Steta
11560 MEXICO, D.F.

Competition and antitrust Tier 2

Santamarina y Steta has a solid practice that regularly represents clients in confrontations with the regulators, including claims of anti-competitive behaviour, cartel investigations and dawn raids (for which the firm provides regular training). The practice also provides strong support to the corporate team, by helping clients obtain clearance for mergers and acquisitions. Key partners include Ernesto Duhne, Jorge Barrero, and Vicente Grau, as well as litigation expert Mariano Calderón.

Corporate and M&A Tier 2

Santamarina y Steta offers an extremely strong national practice, with 44 corporate lawyers working out of Querétaro, Monterrey and Mexico City. The firm represents a broad mix of domestic and international clients on day-to-day matters, including compliance, and also has a good track record in joint ventures and mid-market M&A. Recent matters include advising Grupo Industrial Saltillo on the $217m sale of its subsidiaries Calentadores de America, Fluida and Water Heating Technologies. Clients benefit from a deep bench of highly experienced partners, including Jorge Barrero , Juan Carlos MachorroAlberto SaavedraCarlos Argüelles and Jorge León-Orantes in Mexico City and along with César Cruz Ayala and José Ramón Ayala in Monterrey and Querétaro, respectively. Other clients include Grupa Azoty, Aterian Investment Partners Reix Corp, Pluscorp, Rok Mobile, Cabot Corporation and Grupo Industrial Monclova.

Labour and employment Tier 2

Santamarina y Steta has a good spread of lawyers providing employment advice out of its Mexico City, Monterrey and Queretaro offices. The team's expertise includes M&A support, collective bargaining agreements, health and safety, social security and litigation. Andrés Rodríguez in Mexico City and Monterrey's Juan Carlos de la Vega are the two key contacts and are recommended along with the highly experienced Pedro Velasco.

Projects and infrastructure Tier 2

Santamarina y Steta has a solid track-record advising on major infrastructure projects, where it represents a mix of sponsors, public-sector bodies and lenders. Its expertise runs from energy-related developments, including waste-to-energy projects, through to transport, telecoms and social infrastructure. Key partners include Sergio Chagoya and Juan Carlos Machorro.

Real estate Tier 2

Market stalwart Santamarina y Steta is a longstanding presence in Mexico's real estate sector, and with offices in Mexico City, Monterrey, Querétaro and Tijuana, is well positioned to attend the specificities of local marktets. The team acts for developers, constructors, administrators, trustees and realtors on transactional, financial and development matters, including in relation to industrial warehouses, distribution and shopping centres, offices, housing complexes, tourist developments, mixed-use complexes, airports, and ejidal properties. In recent work, the group advised Mullen Real Estate Holdings on the sale of its equity interests in the Now Sapphire Riviera Cancun Hotel. Tijuana-based Aarón Levet is very well regarded; Vicente Grau and César Cruz Ayala are the key contacts in Mexico City and Monterrey, respectively.

Banking and finance Tier 3

As one of the oldest firms in the country, Santamarina y Steta is something of an institution in the banking and finance legal sector. Operating from offices in Mexico City, Monterrey, and Querétaro, the 16-strong practice handles a wide variety of finance projects, including loan agreements and restructurings, financial structures for international finance projects, and regulatory and day-to-day matters; it also advises on privatisations, incorporations, mergers, dissolutions, winding-up processes, sales and restructurings, and legal audits conducted for brokerage firms and credit institutions. On the borrower side, it assists in secured and unsecured loans, syndicated loans, assets financing, debt exchange, private banking, corporate finance and refinancing. Recent mandates saw the team assist Grupo Industrial Saltillo with a syndicated loan facility of up to $300m, subject to New York laws with corporate guarantees in Mexico and pledges over stock of subsidiaries in Spain; and Atlantica Yield with a $215m revolving loan from Banco Santander, Barclays Bank, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, JP Morgan Chase Bank, and Merrill Lynch. On the lender side it represented key client Banobras in an approximately MXN$1.37bn loan granted to Promotora y Desarrolladora Mexicana (Prodemex) for the development of a public hospital in Bahia de Banderas, Nayarit, under a PPP with the Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social (IMSS). The department is co-led by five partners, with Alberto Saavedra (banking and finance, restructuring, capital markets and corporate governance), Sergio Chagoya (project finance, banking, capital markets and regulatory matters in relation to derivatives), and Juan Carlos Machorro (project finance) being the most active, along with Heriberto Garza and Carlos Argüelles. Key support comes from associates Ricardo Orea Montaño, Margarita Casarin, Arturo Rosette, Elíaz Zaga, Juan Pablo Rodríguez, and Lisa Carral.  Experienced partner Alfonso Castro left  in December 2018 to found his own firm, Del Castillo y Castro Abogados. Other clients include IndusInd Bank, CitiBanamex, Grupo ProHabitación, Banco Nacional de Comercio Exterior, Corporación Interamericana de Inversión, Inter-American Investment Corporation, and Promotora Empresarial del Norte.

Capital markets Tier 3

Santamarina y Steta  's 14-strong handle capital markets team represents a full range of relevent clients, from mutual, investment funds, brokerage firms and  lending institutions to issuers, underwriters, placement agents, dealers and trustees regarding debt and equity offerings, public tender offers, debt exchanges involving public companies, derivatives, and repurchase and securities lending transactions. The practice currently acts as external legal counsel to the Mexican Stock Exchange. It also recently advised  Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) on a joint venture with an infrastructure investment trust managed by CKD Infraestructura Mexic which recently completed a restricted public offering of development trust certificates (CKDs) on the Mexican Stock Exchange; Invex Controladora on its first long and short term debt bond issuances (MXN$1bn and  MXN$600m, respectively) as part of a MXN$3.5bn debt bonds issuance programme; and Grupo Industrial Saltillo on its first and second issuances under a MXN$1.775bn secured long term bond programme. Alberto Saavedra heads the practice; Sergio Chagoya, Carlos Argüelles, and of counsel Jorge Barrero are all active practitioners. Other clients include Controladora Comercial Mexicana / La Comer, Rassini, Kimberly Clark de México, Interjet, Grupo Lamosa, Corporación Geo, Corporación Interamericana de Inversiones, Grupo Palacio de Hierro, Euroclear, Alfa, and Banorte.

Dispute resolution Tier 3

Santamarina y Steta has a solid litigation practice that regularly represents international clients on domestic and cross-border disputes. On the administrative litigation side, key contact Mariano Calderón has strong expertise in environmental and tax-related matters. Roberto Fernández del Valle M. and Carlos Olvera are the firm's main civil and commercial litigators, and the team also has a good grounding in insolvency disputes and the enforcement of arbitration awards. The departure of Fernando Del Castillo, however -who left to establish Del Castillo y Castro Abogados in November 2018- is a loss.

Energy and natural resources Tier 3

Santamarina y Steta offers a wide range of expertise to clients in the power and hydrocarbons sector, based on its solid track-record in major renewables projects and oil-and-gas related investments. This includes bidding rounds with Pemex, infrastructure developments and power purchase agreements, as well as environmental issues and interractions with the regulator. Juan Carlos Machorro is one of the key partners in this area.

Intellectual property Tier 3

Santamarina y Steta has a solid IP practice which covers a broad range of areas, including the protection of plant varieties, trade secrets and domain names, as well as prosecution and litigation. Key partners include Jose Pablo Pérez Zea, who is also noted for his franchising and licensing expertise. The firm represents several major international clients from the pharmaceuticals, manufacturing and automotive industries.

International trade and customs Tier 3

One of the oldest law firms in Mexico, Santamarina y Steta advises clients on the full range of trade matters, including structuring operations in line with customs obligations, FTAs, IMMEX, tariff and non-tariff matters, taxation, antidumping, verification of origin, and related disputes. The practice is led by Alejandro Luna; working alongside him are Ernesto Duhne and tax specialist Mariano Calderón . Key support comes from associates Karina Robledo, Ivan Szymanski, Stephanie Uribe, Jair Vaca, and Michel Zelaya.

Insurance Tier 4

With offices in Mexico City, Querétaro and Monterrey, the full-service Santamarina y Steta acts for insurance clients on contractual, corporate and regulatory matters, including in relation to developments issued by the CNSF and the General Direction of Insurance and Bonding of the Ministry of Finance, as well as advsing reinsurers on setting up in the country. The key practitioners are Francisco Torres in Monterrey and Carlos Olvera in Mexico City; Olvera combines his practice with disputes, money laundering prevention, and bankruptcy and insolvency, while Torres also handles competition and antitrust, M&A, and project finance and infrastructure; support comes from Estefanía Moreno in Monterrey.

Tax Tier 4

Mariano Calderón, who has over 20 years’ experience, and senior tax counsel Agustín Gutiérrez co-lead the six-strong practice at 'legal services institution' Santamarina y Steta . The pair focus on taxation; tax, constitutional and administrative litigation; foreign trade and AML matters; and general tax and tax analysis of corporate and financial transactions, respectively. The team supports the work of the corporate, transactional and bankruptcy practices on issues concerning state and federal taxes, transfer pricing, representation before the tax authorities and social security matters, with associates Karina Robledo, Stephanie Uribe and Jair Vaca all involved in both contentious and consulting work. Recent matters include advising Abengoa (and subsidiaries) on the Mexican aspects of its global €1.17bn restructuring; and General Motors de México on various tax matters that include advisory on transfer pricing compliance and tax audits, and representation in tax litigation.

TMT Tier 4

At the full-service Santamarina y Steta, a small team advises on transactional and regulatory TMT-related work. Leading the team is Jorge León-Orantes, who specialises in telecommunications, media and technology, e-commerce and privacy and data protection, as well as in corporate governance; he is supported by senior associate Paola Vargas, who has additional expertise in the aerospace and satellite segments.

We are legal experts in Mexico. We know how to develop strategic solutions that produce successful results for our clients, whom we consider our business partners.

We make their challenges our own by understanding their environment and that of the local situation, culture and Mexican laws.  This is our seal of quality and excellence.

We are a one-stop shop with the capacity to offer legal services in more than 20 practice areas, ensuring reliable, multidisciplinary, integrated and comprehensive approaches.

We are the most effective and committed partners with our client’s projects, investments, transactions and dreams.

Department Name Email Telephone
Securities and capital markets Alberto Saavedra +5255 5279.5400
Mergers and acquisitions Jorge León-Orantes +5255 5279.5400
Project finance Sergio Chagoya +5255 5279.5400
Labor and employment Juan Carlos De la Vega +5255 5279.5400
Energy Juan Carlos Machorro +5255 5279.5400
Litigation Carlos Olvera +5255 5279.5400
Director of Business Development and MKT Gaby Finkel +5255 5279.5400
Intellectual Property José Pablo Pérez Zea +5255 5279.5400
Competition/Antitrust Ernesto Duhne +5255 5279.5400
International Trade Alejandro Luna +5255 5279.5400
Privacy and Data Protection César Cruz +5281 8133 6002
Photo Name Position Profile
 Mariano Calderón  photo Mariano Calderón Partner
 Sergio Chagoya  photo Sergio Chagoya Partner
 Ernesto Duhne  photo Ernesto Duhne Partner
 Roberto Fernández del Valle M.  photo Roberto Fernández del Valle M. Partner
 Vicente Grau  photo Vicente Grau Partner
 Pablo Laresgoiti  photo Pablo Laresgoiti Partner
 Jorge León-Orantes  photo Jorge León-Orantes Partner
 Aarón Levet  photo Aarón Levet Partner
 Alejandro Luna  photo Alejandro Luna Partner
 Juan Carlos Machorro  photo Juan Carlos Machorro Partner
 Carlos Olvera  photo Carlos Olvera Partner
 Jose Pablo Pérez Zea  photo Jose Pablo Pérez Zea Partner
 Andrés Rodríguez  photo Andrés Rodríguez Partner
 Alberto Saavedra  photo Alberto Saavedra Partner
 Pedro Velasco  photo Pedro Velasco Advisor
 Juan Carlos de la Vega  photo Juan Carlos de la Vega Managing Partner
Number of partners : 20
Number of associates : 69
Number of Law Clerk : 40
AmCham American Chamber of Commerce
Canadian Chamber of Commerce
British Chamber of Commerce
International Chamber of Commerce (ICC)
Number of special counsel : 2
Number of fee-earners worldwide : 219