On behalf of The Legal 500, I am truly delighted to introduce the GC Powerlist: France 2023. This edition celebrates the remarkable talents and achievements of France’s leading in-house counsel, and gives insight on the roles they play in contributing to the growth and development of the companies and industries in which they operate, while navigating unprecedented changes in the legal environment.
The second edition since the Covid-19 pandemic, this compilation explores how in-house legal professionals continue to adapt to and manage crises, especially in the face of other major events that have had global unprecedented impacts on regulatory environments, industries, and the very role of the legal function.
It also showcases the impressive cases and transactions spearheaded by these individuals, alongside their views on various phenomena impacting the legal sector, such as the evolving role of the general counsel, and the emergence of novel technologies that have transformed the work they do.
On this, Jean-Michel Orion, Radio France states, “[i]n the face of digital transformation, legal directors will have to continue to adapt to the rapid evolution of technology. This means managing the legal challenges associated with data protection, cybersecurity and the use of artificial intelligence in the legal field.”
According to, Maï Novello, group deputy chief legal and compliance officer at SCOR, they will need “[a]gility and versatility, as well as an appetite to push the boundaries of their traditional way of working in a fast-changing environment.”
As general counsel take on this challenge, they will be aided by the imminent acknowledgement and implementation of legal privilege, a welcome development that will no doubt, support advice issued by general counsel, and allow them to better secure the interests of their company.
In line with the seemingly endless crises the world has been experiencing, this edition contains various strategies these esteemed counsel employ to mitigate risks and protect their companies. While it is an unspoken rule to pre-empt and manage potential challenges, it is also equally (if not more) important to have a crisis management plan in place – especially one that all team members can follow cohesively.
Manuel Mesquita, head of legal corporate at Auchan Retail International says it best: “The worst thing that can happen in a time of crisis is when each member of the team takes isolated initiatives because actions may conflict and lead to an increase in workload.” Sharif Abousaada, group general counsel at Maurel & Prom adds, “I truly believe that we are stronger together and that it is important to leverage the experience and creativity of all members of the team in a crisis situation.”
Echoing the widely accepted view that the legal function should double as business partners, the approaches also include extensive engagements with stakeholders and business leaders, such as the CEO.
The interviews in this edition of The GC Powerlist: France 2023 also provide extensive views on widely popular trends that the legal industry is currently experiencing – contract automation, increased focus on ESG strategies – and how these highly skilled professionals are leveraging their roles in driving these developments and making positive contributions, while remaining conscious of operating within ethical, compliance and regulatory parameters.
We would like to congratulate and express our heartfelt thanks to everyone who featured in this edition, and graciously contributed their time and insights to make this year’s rundown on France’s elite in-house counsel a success.
Funke Olufon| Research Analyst The Legal 500 GC Powerlist Series
The Legal 500 granted the Ankara in-house community exclusive access to the groundbreaking GC Summit, an event dedicated solely to delving into the crucial legal challenges and opportunities faced by in-house legal specialists in the Turkish capital.
Setting the tone for the event, Murat Yazıcı, the founder of Yazıcı Attorney Partnership, delivered a compelling opening keynote address. He passionately explored the active role that general counsel can and should play in today’s dynamic world, addressing the imminent challenges on the horizon.
Throughout the day, we were privileged to glean insights from eminent private practice attorneys at Erciyas, Çakmak Avukatlık Ortaklığı, Gonen Law Office, and Tunca Attorney Partnership. Additionally, the perspectives and ideas of senior in-house attorneys from renowned companies such as LG Electronics, KİBAR Holding A.Ş., Hyundai Assan Otomotiv San. ve Tic. A.Ş., Rönesans Holding, Akfen Holding, Pragma, Gülermak Group, Kalyon Holding, Alacer Gold Madencilik A.Ş., COB Tüprag, and Limak Group of Companies, among others, enriched our understanding. The Istanbul Arbitration Centre also made valuable contributions.
The agenda encompassed a diverse range of topics, including navigating internal challenges with insights from leading in-house counsel; exploring current trends and sectorial insights in M&A transactions with a focus on key elements for a successful deal and legal challenges; mastering the art of crafting effective contracts by navigating drafting, negotiations, and key considerations; and delving into strategic investment dynamics in mining and energy, where discussions centered around navigating legal frameworks, building trust, and managing public perception for in-house success.
Bringing the event to a powerful conclusion, Başak Gürbüz, Visa’s principal regional counsel, delivered an inspiring presentation. She summarized the day’s key insights and explored the pivotal role of in-house counsel in today’s ever-evolving landscape, offering valuable insights on managing organizational expectations effectively.
We are grateful for the excellent response from sponsors, speakers and delegates.
Finally, we’d like to thank the moderators and panellists who helped construct a great program that ensured the summit’s success and enabled all of you to attend.
Until the next time, take care.