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Antitrust - ranked: tier 5


With ‘industry knowledge and speed, but also finesse and solution-generating creativityDentons’ team led by Jörg Karenfort advises a broad client portfolio, which includes names such as Daimler, ThyssenKrupp and Airbus, on all antitrust matters. The firm is particularly active in antitrust proceedings, damage claims proceedings and in merger control, where it assisted Flex with the acquisition of an automotive supplier and the establishment of a joint venture. Other areas of expertise include compliance advice and distribution antitrust; in the latter area the team often advises Coca-Cola Germany, Samsung and Kolon Industries. René Grafunder was promoted to partner.

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Compliance - ranked: tier 4


With corporate compliance work at its core, Dentons is well versed in advising on acquisitions and restructurings and has expertise in dealing with data protection matters and internal investigations; the latter frequently features tax evasion, fraud and corruption elements. Key figures include Rainer Markfort and of counsel Christian Schefold. Anti-corruption expert Michael Malterer joined the team in July 2016 from Norton Rose Fulbright.

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Employment - ranked: tier 6


Dentons provides a ‘a very high service level’ and has particular expertise in the healthcare sector and in church labour law. Benefiting from its global network, the team acts for a number of national and international clients; this includes an international conglomerate from the metal and electrical industries, which received advice on matters pertaining to decision procedures initiated by employee representatives, while the practice also assisted a logistics company with wage and contract negotiations with two competing unions. Utz Andelewski heads the team, whose junior members are frequently recommended by clients. Markus Diepold has deep restructuring expertise.

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Tax - ranked: tier 5


Dentonskeeps the client’s interests in mind and knows the financial industry and the regional conditions very well’. Assisting insurance companies, among others, with transactional matters constitutes a key portion of the workload along with corporate tax structuring, international tax law and contentious tax issues. The ‘solution-oriented’ Stephan Busch, who co-heads the practice with Michael Graf and ‘is open for an informed discourse and at the same time is very pleasant to work with’, acted for the insolvency administrator of GEG Grundstücksentwicklungsgesellschaft Wasserstadt Berlin Oberhavel in a revision procedure on the constitutionality of minimum taxation before the Federal Constitutional Court. On the transactional side, the team assisted various subsidiaries of regional savings banks on the sale of their majority stakes in S Broker to DekaBank, while Igsaan Varachia advised private equity investor Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (KKR) on the tax law aspects involved in the acquisition of the platform Travelopia from the TUI Group. Counsel Thomas Voss is recommended and counsel Marcus Seiboth joined the team in September 2016 from the auditing and tax consulting firm Roever Broenner Susat Mazars.

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Germany: Banking and finance

Financial services: regulatory
Banking and finance: financial services: regulatory - ranked: tier 4


Dentons’ growing regulatory practice is ‘highly regarded’, not least due to its ‘excellent advice, very good industry knowledge and very quick response times’. The team surrounding Bernd Geier advises banks, market infrastructure providers and associations on strategic matters and transactions and also covers mandates in connection with internal investigations and litigation. A particular focus lies in advising on MiFID II implementation and the European Market Abuse Regulation (MAR); clients include the German Stock Exchange and Bankhaus Metzler regarding its MAR and MiFID-II project. Other clients are the Deutsche Sparkassen- und Giroverband and BayernLB, among others.

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Germany: Capital markets

Structured finance and securitisation
Capital markets: Structured finance and securitisation - ranked: tier 3


Now also ‘on the radar’, Dentons was able to significantly strengthen its structured finance and securitisation practice: The firm not only gained Arne Klüwer from Clifford Chance in Frankfurt in April 2017, who now heads the German banking and finance group and the European structured finance practice, but Mortimer Berlet followed at the same time and joined as partner, and in the Munich office the ‘bright’ Matthias Eggert switched from Baker McKenzie. He currently advises BillFront on a financing structure for the refinancing of receivables from online advertisement, and provides continuous advice to Wilmington Trust SP Services as trustee regarding a multitude of securitisations and collatoralised financings. The team also advises various German banks on diverse cross-border trade receivables transactions, in some cases with multiple financings from different banks.

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Germany: Industry focus

Industry focus: energy - ranked: tier 5


Dentonscovers the full range of transactional work including corporate and tax matters in the renewable energy sector’. The group has a ‘broad practice and a world-wide offering of competent lawyers’. Within the five partner-strong team, Peter Mayer is recommended for international energy transactions, while Daniel Barth stands out for his share deal expertise. Up to early 2017, transaction lawyer Thomas Schubert assisted Enbridge with a €2bn investment in offshore wind farm Hohe See, which included commercial, regulatory and contractual law matters. In Frankfurt, Christoph Papenheim assisted China National Environmental Protection Group with taking over the German energy-from-waste company EEW.

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Healthcare and life sciences
Industry focus: healthcare and life sciences - ranked: tier 4


In the healthcare sector, Dentons stands out for its strong transactional expertise, which was further strengthened by the arrival of Thomas Strassner and counsel Christopher Mayston, who both formerly worked at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP. Another new-joiner is competition law expert Matthias Nordmann, who came from Norton Rose Fulbright. In a recent highlight, practice head Christof Kautzsch advised BG Kliniken on the creation of a centrally managed hospital group, with a total value of €1bn. Ilka Mehdorn is the name to note for regulatory work; instructions include handling market access issues and representing the German association of plastic, reconstructive and aesthetic surgeons in litigation concerning the disclosure of calculation bases for hospital flat rates per case. Additionally, the group is experienced at handling labour law.

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Germany: Intellectual property

Trade marks and unfair competition
Intellectual property: trade marks and unfair competition - ranked: tier 5


Dentons was able to strengthen its trade mark and competition law team by adding Stefan Dittmer from DLA Piper, who now jointly heads the team with Constantin Rehaag. With new of counsel Helmut Brandau, the practice also gained expertise in the white-collar crime space. Recent highlights include advising a large pharmaceutical company on trade mark and white-collar crime matters for countering the sale of counterfeit medicine, and assisting a market-leading online retailer with matters pertaining to the distribution of branded products.

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Germany: Public sector

Planning and environment
Public sector: Planning and environment - ranked: tier 5


Dentons offers an ‘optimal service level’ and is ‘recommended as an all-rounder’. Ilka Mehdorn, who is ‘experienced in many legal areas’ and ‘finds a solution for all issues, and also organises complex tasks in an optimal manner and is able to grasp issues extremely quickly’, is highly recommended. In the area of product and waste legislation, she advises BHIM Zentrale Wertstoffstelle on the establishment and activity of Stiftung Zentrale Verpackungsregister, particularly with regard to the packaging act; all project stages are handled and advice is provided in a number of areas within and outside of public law. The team also advises DPG Deutsche Pfandsystem on product law matters. Procurement law specialist Wolfram Krohn, corporate law specialist Matthias Santelmann and tax law specialist Stephan Busch are also recommended. The ‘strategically excellent consultant’ Jörg Karenfort has been advising Emerson Electric for 11 years on product-related environmental law.

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Public procurement
Public sector: Public procurement - ranked: tier 2


Procurement law at Dentons is a particularly international practice area; the group acts for clients from the IT, defence, transport and logistics sectors. An international car manufacturer retained the group for representation in a Federal Transport Ministry proceeding for the new tender for the truck toll system, which includes the sale of shares to Toll Collect and the new operating contract from 2018 to 2028. Infrastructure work included practice head Wolfram Krohn’s representation of a railway construction technology provider in proceedings for the acquisition of special rail vehicles for the French state railways. Krohn also, together with a partner from the firm’s Washington office, assisted a US defence company with a dispute with a German subcontractor concerning a military assignment in the US. A highlight for Frankfurt-based Peter Braun is advising a global consulting service provider on compliance matters during a European procurement procedure.

Leading individuals

Wolfram Krohn - Dentons

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Germany: Real estate and construction

Real estate
Real estate and construction: Real estate - ranked: tier 3


Dentons specialises in the asset classes hotels, nursing homes and speciality properties such as student residences and data centres and has a strong profile for international transactions including the acquisition of corporate chains. Team head Dirk-Reiner Voß and Volker Mergener provide regular advice to IREIT Global and Barings on asset management issues, while CR Investment Management and KanAm Grund are also part of the team’s client roster. In early 2017, Jan Hellner, Sebastian Schmid and Sabine Wieduwilt were elevated to the partnership. Hellner has been advising the hotel group Meininger on various matters, while Schmid has been acting for Commerz Real since 2009, and along with Andreas Ziegenhagen, Wieduwilt assisted AmRest with the acquisition of 15 Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants in Germany.

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Germany: Restructuring and insolvency

Restructuring and insolvency: Restructuring - ranked: tier 3


Dentons is ‘particularly active in the field of trusts and advice on pre-insolvency matters or insolvency itself’. The practice had a new office in Munich since July 2016 and was additionally strengthened with the arrival of counsel Benjamin Kurzberg from Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek. Besides comprehensive expertise in financial restructurings the 15-strong team also advises on self-administration and handles in insolvency-related disputes. A particular focus lies on restructuring advice in connection with two-way trusteeships. ‘Outstanding practitioner’ Andreas Ziegenhagen advised Scholz Holding regarding the transfer of the shares held in a trust to Chiho-Tiande Group. In another highlight the firm assisted AEG Power Solutions with the introduction of a restructuring plan and agreement with bondholders. The Frankfurter office saw the departure of counsel Till Buschmann to Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP in April 2017; Dirk Schoene and Sebastian Schmid, however, were already promoted to partner in January 2017 and Daniel F. Fritz, who is ‘well connected and involved in current legislative proposals’, joined from HWW Hermann Wienberg Wilhelm in September 2017.

Leading individuals

Andreas Ziegenhagen - Dentons

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Further information on Dentons

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Legal Developments by:

  • Legal aspects of documenting shipping finance transactions in the United Arab Emirates

    The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is strategically placed between Europe and the Far East. The UAE has been ranked among the top 15 maritime nations by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development and the UAE Government is working on plans to transform the shipping industry into one of the country’s major economic sectors.
    - SNR Denton

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