Firm Profile > CMS > Zurich, Switzerland

CMS von Erlach Poncet Ltd.
Dreikönigstrasse 7
8022 Zurich

Healthcare and life sciences Tier 1

CMS impresses with its broad coverage of work in the healthcare and life sciences field. The team is experienced in commercial cooperation agreements, financial benefits, comprehensive regulatory advice and compliance, as well as court and administrative proceedings. Patrick Sommer is well versed in merger control, parallel trade and clinical trials. Alain Raemy is noted for his expertise in healthcare law, and associate Marion Wyler is another key member of the team. Felix Kesselring left for Bratschi Ltd in early 2020.

Practice head(s):

Patrick Sommer


Good team for investing in early stage life science companies and the corporate group understands the key issues in the transactions.

Key clients

Synlab Suisse SA

Kieser Training AG

Syncona Investment Management Ltd.

Synlab International GmbH

Nextclinics International GmbH

Bayer (Switzerland) AG

Liva Nova Switzerland SA

Bruker Switzerland

Insurance Tier 1

The 'trusted' team at CMS stands out for its 'excellent skills' and 'is well-connected within the industry'. Recent work includes handling professional liability claims for Liechtenstein Bank and other insurance companies regarding criminal, medical and further miscellaneous legal cases. The team has also assisted multi-line providers with amending product terms and conditions, drafted group internal life insurance treaties and advised on coverage issues and insurer-side rights of recourse. Managing partner and disputes specialist Jodok Wicki regularly conducts proceedings before state courts. Clemens von Zedtwitz joined gbf Attorneys-at-law Ltd in September 2019.

Practice head(s):

Jodok Wicki


CMS is a trusted partner with a worldwide net that delivers.’

CMS has excellent skills in the fields relevant for our company, such as insurance, liability and contracts.’

Only very few law firms in Switzerland have insurance teams large enough to handle major cases with adequate resources – CMS is one of them. CMS’s insurance team covers German, French and English and is well-connected within the industry.’

Key clients



Real estate and construction Tier 1

The team at CMS is usually engaged in the full life-cycle of a real estate mandate, from the acquisition, development, and financing up until the sale of the property. The team is a popular choice for investors, developers and for key players in the hotel industry. Stefan Gerster leads the practice; he specialises in portfolio transactions and investments in shopping and entertainment centres. He is supported by Sibylle Schnyder, who knows landlord and tenancy as well as construction law well. Olivier Carrard, whose speciality is commercial real estate transactions, leads the team in Geneva.

Practice head(s):

Stefan Gerster


A very professional, hands-on team with great engagement and professional excellence.’

CMS has great experience and is always willing to support.’

Key clients

KanAm Grund Kapitalverwaltungsgesellschaft mbH


Credit Suisse Asset Management (Schweiz) Ltd.

Global IT Company

Swiss Prime Site Immobilien Ltd.

Allianz Suisse Real Estate Inc

Swiss Prime Investment Foundation

Competition Tier 2

The competition team at CMS has considerable experience in antitrust administrative proceedings, compliance programmes and has access to an extensive international network for cross-border mandates. Patrick Sommer, who is a key name for corporate and M&A work, and Pascal Favre, who specialises in distribution law, jointly lead the practice. Marquard Christen combines competition and public procurement expertise. The group is also well versed in civil proceedings as well as unfair competition law.


CMS team is extremely professional and competent. Very well knowledgeable and connected with the competition authorities. The team is very well integrated with the other practices of the firm and collaboration goes seamlessly. ‘

The cooperation with CMS is of an exceptionally high level of quality and responsiveness. The answers were always fast and the advice given precise.

Marquard Christen is the partner to go to for excellent competition law work and also for public procurement law. He is very skilled and a thorough sharp analyst who is highly pragmatic at the same time.’

Pascal Favre is a very good counsel: diligent, reactive and delivering clever advice.’

Key clients


Bank Julius Bär & Co. AG

Bayer (Switzerland) AG

Credit Suisse / Swisscard

Hawa Sliding Solutions AG


Holcim (Schweiz) AG

Koch Group AG





Sius AG

SNCF Group

Sunrise Communications Ltd

Swiss Refugee Council

Zürcher Kantonalbank

Dispute resolution: litigation Tier 2

The litigation practice at CMS impresses with its sector coverage, and is active in disputes pertaining to banking and finance, insurance and sports, among others. It is particularly experienced in general corporate matters as well as in contractual disputes. The team is jointly led by Philipp Dickenmann in Zurich, who is experienced in international commercial litigation; and Geneva-based Christian Lüscher, who also advises on white-collar criminal proceedings. In Zurich, Jodok Wicki had an active year in the product liability space, while Damiano Brusa is regularly instructed in construction and joint venture matters. Criminal law expert Bernhard Lötscher and banking litigator Niklaus Zaugg are also recommended. In the Geneva office, other names to note include sports law specialist Olivier CarrardPhilippe Grumbach, who mainly acts for private clients, and Daniel Kinzer.

Practice head(s):

Philipp Dickenmann; Christian Lüscher

Other key lawyers:


The team provides very practical, commercial legal advice which includes suggestions on how best to handle the dispute going forwards.

CMS has high and direct partner attention. The team impresses with energy and drive to learn about the industry and cares about details.

Jodok Wicki is very engaged,  has excellent industry knowledge and litigation strategy, and stands out with his attention to detail.’

Niklaus Zaugg provides in-depth know-how as well as solution-oriented legal advice, is very responsive and provides client-oriented legal services.’

Daniel Kinzer is an excellent litigation strategist, who considers all aspects and options.’

Pierre Ducret is very responsive and client friendly.

Key clients

AIG Europe Limited

Atos AG, Zurich, Switzerland

Banque Cantonale de Genève

China Development Bank

Chubb Insurance

MET Gas and Energy Marketing Ltd.

Yves Bouvier

VP Bank (Schweiz) AG

Xavier Justo

Employment Tier 2

CMS is known for its 'immediate', 'practical and reliable' service level in employment matters, ranging from day-to-day operational and policy queries to transactional and dispute resolution handling. 'Outstanding' team head Christian Gersbach provides 'very knowledgeable, responsive and pragmatic' counsel to clients including Nike, Denner AG and Accenture AG on general Swiss employment law. The department also advised Novelis Inc. on applying Swiss TUPE rules during its acquisition of rolling business assets from Constellium and assisted Ascom with its global review and standardisation of employee contracts.

Practice head(s):

Christian Gersbach


CMS service is unique because we get immediate service. The advice given is practical and reliable.

The quick reaction on requests and the professional and competent handling of it. The advice is very practical and understandable.

Christian Gersbach: outstanding work – very knowledgeable, responsive and pragmatic.

Key clients

Nike Inc.

Accenture AG

Denner AG

Corning Inc.


Novelis Inc


Gaydoul Group

Sports law Tier 2

CMS acts for clients including Team Ineos, numerous football clubs, individual athletes and apparel manufacturers. The team is led by Olivier Carrard in Geneva, who has extensive experience as a CAS arbitrator, and Philipp Dickenmann – a commercial litigator and versatile sports counsel – in Zurich. Pierre Ducret recently handled a training compensation arbitration and a sensitive litigation case concerning an athlete and alleged medical negligence.

Practice head(s):

Olivier Carrard, Philipp Dickenmann

Key clients


Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS)

Banking and finance: Zurich Tier 3

CMS is regularly instructed by financial institutions, corporates and investors to assist with an impressive range of banking and finance matters. The team is well versed in a variety of finance matters, such as acquisition, trade, project and asset, as well as corporate lending. Kaspar Landolt advises on financing, as well as assisting with obtaining regulatory licences. Counsel Dominique Gemperli is another key practitioner in the team, which is led by of counsel Jürg Guggisberg.

Practice head(s):

Jürg Guggisberg


The team always provides very practical advice.’

Kaspar Landolt is greatly appreciated for being able to explain and outline complex topics in a simple language.’

Commercial, corporate and M&A Tier 3

CMS has core strengths in W&I insurance, private equity mandates, D&O matters and cross-border transactions. The team is traditionally strong in transactions in the mid-market but has seen an increase in instructions to handle deals at the higher end. The team works closely with its international network, in particular for clients from the energy, financial services, infrastructure, life sciences and technology industry, among others. Department head Stefan Brunnschweiler also leads the firm's global corporate and M&A practice. Other key names include Alain RaemyStephan Werlen and Daniel Jenny , as well as Pascal Favre in Geneva.

Practice head(s):

Stefan Brunnschweiler


Top partners with high competence and excellent working speed, which is combined with a high schedule flexibility.

The team has excellent technical knowledge, gives sound commercial advice and is highly responsive.’

Alain Raemy is, besides of his deep legal knowledge, a very strong corporate and M&A partner who understands the business needs of his clients very well and always comes up with strong business advice.’

Stefan Brunnschweiler is pragmatic and solution-oriented.

Pascal Favre provides excellent technical advice and drafting, strong commercial guidance and is highly responsive.’

Daniel Jenny is an exceptionally smart and skilled lawyer. He is technically outstanding and at the same time commercial and pragmatic.’

Key clients


Bruker Switzerland AG

Alpha Solutions AG


agta record

capiton/CymbiQ Group

Showa Denko K.K.

FinLeap GmbH


Gaydoul Group




Shareholder of evitria AG

Shareholders of Orbium Holding AG

Foncia Group

Syncona Ltd

Optimapharm Group

DS Group


Nicolas Industrie S.A.S.

Anheuser-Busch InBev

Guardtime Ltd.

Data privacy and data protection Tier 3

CMS works on privacy matters relating to the exchange of personal data and connecting businesses or customers to cloud services, while also representing clients before the Swiss Data Protection Authority. Practice head Dirk Spacek, who specialises in the IT and data challenges presented by new business models, joined from Walder Wyss Ltd in February 2019. The firm also assists with legal issues regarding the acquisition, use and analysis of big data; a particular highlight involved handling data protection, alongside terms and conditions, for the Better Cotton Initiative's online tracing platform.

Practice head(s):

Dirk Spacek

Key clients


Avectris AG

Better Cotton Initiative


Fintech Tier 3

CMS regularly advises foreign-based fintech entities wishing to set up ICOs and establish their cryptocurrency business in Switzerland. In one highlight, the firm advised Crowdpark SA on the set up and launch of a real estate investment crowdfunding platform. Dirk Spacek, who joined from Walder Wyss in 2019, leads the team alongside associate Matthew Kuert. Other clients include FinLeap GmbH and Guardtime Ltd.

Practice head(s):

Dirk Spacek, Matthew Kuert

Key clients

FinLeap GmbH

Guardtime Ltd.

Crowdpark SA

Leading firms: French-speaking Switzerland Tier 3

International law firm CMS offers considerable experience in various practice areas from its Geneva office; among these are corporate and M&A, competition, tax and sports as well as dispute resolution. Managing partner Olivier CarrardAndrio OrlerPascal Favre and Philippe Grumbach are recommended. The key contacts for litigation, arbitration and white-collar crime are Christian LüscherDaniel Kinzer and Pierre Ducret.

Practice head(s):

Olivier Carrard

Key clients

Aberdeen Group

Areal Bank


Otsuka Pharmaceutical

Sberbank of Russia

Leading firms: German-speaking Switzerland Tier 3

CMS has a full-service offering, but is particularly noted for expertise in the areas of dispute resolution, healthcare and life sciences, and competition law as well as in matters relating to insurance, employment and real estate. Key practitioners include managing partners David Hürlimann and Jodok Wicki, as well as Stefan Gerster, Stefan Brunnschweiler, Marquard Christen, Christian Gersbach, Philipp Dickenmann, Reto Hunsperger and Daniel Jenny.


The services provided by CMS are based on a deep knowledge and understanding for the customer’s needs. They have always been provided on time in an outstanding quality and with a good value for money factor.

Apart from his profound knowledge of antitrust law, Marquard Christen’s strength is his capability to quickly understand even the most complex sets of facts, identify the legal problems at hand and come up with a solution which takes into account not only the legal issue but also the business interests.’

The consistent, persistent, and precise Reto Hunsperger delivers excellent results.’

Private client Tier 3

CMS's private client practice is noted for advising clients on estate planning and estate litigation; here, it is experienced in Swiss as well as international mandates, and benefits from its global network. HNWIs, families and entrepreneurs are on the client roster. Team head Tobias Somary's broad background is highlighted; his experience also includes succession planning, prenuptial agreements and inheritance disputes. Senior associate Louise Lutz Sciamanna is a key practitioner; she is noted alongside Max Albers and David Hürlimann.

Practice head(s):

Tobias Somary


CMS has a top-quality private client practice with particular expertise in complex cross-border succession planning.’

Tobias Somary is supremely knowledgeable, practical and empathic, a quality not to be underestimated in the private client field.

Tobias Somary and Louise Lutz Sciamanna both have a strong analytical approach. They have strong communication skills as well as enormous readiness for action.

TMT Tier 3

CMS focuses on telecoms-related M&A transactions along with IP contract law, data protection and IT outsourcing matters. The team also provides general regulatory and corporate advice for clients including Cogent Communications, Ametek and Designwerk. Practice head Dirk Spacek – who joined from Walder Wyss Ltd. in February 2019 – is well known for assisting new businesses in the media and technology sectors. Alain Raemy is noted for his 'high quality work' on international and domestic business transactions.

Practice head(s):

Dirk Spacek


No detailed overview on the overall team – however an excellent reputation in the Swiss market.’

High-quality work of Alain Raemy in smaller corporate transactions in the industrial/IT sectors.’

Key clients



BLR & Partners AG

Stingray Digital Group Inc.

Cogent Communications




Avectris AG


Tax Tier 4

The team at CMS has considerable experience in assisting clients with a variety of tax planning matters and particularly with business reorganisations. It works closely across offices and as part of a cross-practice offering with the firm's banking and finance, insurance and real estate departments, among others. Geneva-based Andrio Orler is highly active in various transactions. Sarah Busca Bonvin is able to draw on her previous experience with the Geneva Tax Administration. Zurich-based David Hürlimann also assists with individual taxation and VAT matters.

Practice head(s):

Andrio Orler; David Hürlimann


The team is very reliable, accurate and fast. The lawyers understand the legal problems and offer innovative and competent solutions.’

David Hürlimann has a good grip on the national and international tax law. He is a very experienced lawyer with an excellent legal know-how. His response time is very short.

The firm: CMS von Erlach Poncet is a leading Swiss law firm, with a proven track record and a reputation for excellent client service stretching back more than 80  years. The firm has a strong international focus and its expertise covers all areas of commercial law, making CMS Switzerland a solid player for  international business law on the legal market. As a member of CMS, one of the world’s ten biggest law firms, CMS Switzerland combines local roots and business connections with the global outlook and reach to serve its clients’ needs across Europe and beyond.

CMS von Erlach Poncet is the result of the 2014 merger of CMS von Erlach Henrici in Zurich and ZPG Avocats in Geneva, which brought together two prominent Swiss law firms. Working from Switzerland’s major financial and commercial centres, the firm’s experienced teams provide top-tier specialist legal expertise and business-focused advice in domestic and cross-border law and tax matters.

Areas of practice: CMS von Erlach Poncet’ s main areas of practice include banking and finance, commercial, competition, corporate and M&A, dispute resolution,  employment, funds, insurance, intellectual property, public procurement, real estate and tax.

Clients: CMS von Erlach Poncet advises a wide range of large and mid-sized national and international clients from all major industries including banking and finance, consumer products, energy, infrastructure and project finance, insurance and funds, lifesciences, manufacturing, professional services,
real estate and construction, technology, media and telecommunication, and transport and logistics.

Major clients include: ABB Asea Brown Bovery Ltd., AIG Europe Limited, Bayer (Switzerland) AG, Atos AG, Burger King Europe, Credit Suisse, Lifewatch, Merbag, Michelin, Nike, Novelis Inc., Pfizer, Porsche, Rieter, Schaeffler Schweiz, Sunrise, and Swisscard AECS.

Department Name Email Telephone
Employment & Pensions Christian Gersbach
Banking and finance Dr Kaspar Landolt
Commercial Reto Hunsperger
Energy Alain Raemy
Funds Dr Andre E Lebrecht
Corporate/M&A Stefan Brunnschweiler
Corporate/M&A Dr Pascal G Favre
Intellectual property Dr Dirk Spacek
Hotels and leisure Dr Sibylle Schnyder
Real estate and construction Dr Stefan Gerster
Real estate and construction Olivier Carrard
Infrastructure and projects Dr Kaspar Landolt
Antitrust and EU Dr Patrick Sommer
Antitrust and EU Dr Pascal G Favre
Consumer goods Stefan Brunnschweiler
Life sciences Dr Patrick Sommer
Private equity Dr Stephan Werlen
Private clients Tobias Somary
Private clients Philippe A Grumbach
Litigation and arbitration Philipp Dickenmann
Litigation and arbitration Christian Lüscher
Tax David Hürlimann
Tax Andrio Orler
TMC – technology, media and communications Dr Dirk Spacek
Public procurement Marquard Christen
Insurance Dr Jodok Wicki
Photo Name Position Profile
Mr Stefan Brunnschweiler  photo Mr Stefan Brunnschweiler
 Mark Cagienard  photo Mark Cagienard
 Marquard Christen  photo Marquard Christen
Mr Philipp J Dickenmann  photo Mr Philipp J Dickenmann
Dr iur Stefan Gerster  photo Dr iur Stefan Gerster
Mr Jürg Guggisberg  photo Mr Jürg Guggisberg
Mr David Hürlimann  photo Mr David Hürlimann
 Reto Hunsperger  photo Reto Hunsperger
Dr Daniel Jenny  photo Dr Daniel Jenny
Mr Bernhard Lötscher  photo Mr Bernhard Lötscher
Dr iur Sibylle Schnyder  photo Dr iur Sibylle Schnyder
Mr Tobias Somary  photo Mr Tobias Somary
Dr iur Stephan Werlen  photo Dr iur Stephan Werlen
Dr iur Jodok Wicki  photo Dr iur Jodok Wicki
Dr iur Niklaus Zaugg  photo Dr iur Niklaus Zaugg
Number of lawyers : 96
at this office : 65
worldwide : >4,800
World Law Group
Contacts : Jodok Wicki, managing partner
Contacts : Olivier Carrard, partner, head Geneva office
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CMS locations : CMS has 75 offices in 43 countries around the world