Interview with: Yevhen Smiiukha, Managing Partner
Dynasty Law Firm | View firm profile
Managing Partner Yevhen Smiiukha provides detailed information on how Ukrainian business; legal and investment market changes and expands.
What do you see as the main points that differentiate Dynasty Law Firm from your competitors?
One of the key differences between Dynasty Law Firm and our competitors is the sincere desire of all employees of our company to help our Client, sometimes even against the financial gain of our company. We never set ourselves the goal of enriching ourselves at the expense of the Client, the interests of the Client are always our priority. Thus, when we also get a good fee for our work, then, along with the flattering and approving feedback from our Clients about the work we have done, we understand that We are in a win-win position when both the Client and our company receive benefits.
Moreover, many years ago, back in the years when our company was founded, we decided that we always tell the Client only the truth, without distorting and concealing anything, give precise real forecasts, not embellishing, but not dramatizing the situation. We, also, have taken a decision not to spread ourselves in each and every practice, on the other hand, narrowing our specialty. The highest level of specialization, which is confirmed by our successful cases yearly.
Besides, we have moved away from the traditional approach of providing legal assistance, making our main activity a comprehensive solution to the most complex and seemingly intractable problems of the Client. We offer a non-standard approach in achieving the goals, an individual, and a selective approach to each Client with in-depth analysis and risk calculation for the Client. We stand out with the ability to solve problems that other lawyers considered impossible for the Client to solve – brings us an additional interest and incentive in work.
Also, one of the competitive advantages is the highly qualified Dynasty Law team. It can be said with honour, that the vast majority of our team members have been working in the company for more than ten years and some – since the foundation of the firm.
All of the above is our key difference and competitive advantage among other law firms.
Which practices do you see growing in the next 12 months? What are the drivers behind that?
It is sought to believe that within the next twelve months, the Ukrainian legal market will expand the practices that are related to the investment, transactions with business assets, and criminal practice. Despite the military conflict in Ukraine, out of a sudden, it became a point of interest for many foreign investors from around the world. Ukraine is now one of the most attractive countries to invest in, as it started synchronizing national legislation with the EU one, yet, still having comparative low-paid and available qualified technical staff, as well as the relevant infrastructure inherited from the collapsed USSR. All of this means, that with rapid growing of investment market the need for legal support of business transactions will eventually grow.
While criminal practice traditionally remains growing, and such growth can be associated with several issues. The first one is the tightening of public policy overall. Secondly, the never-ending and still ongoing fight against money laundering, which spreads everywhere, regardless of the size of the business. One more thing is the eradication of corruption, which has its place to be. The abovementioned problems and somewhat other issues will keep up the growth and development of the criminal practices in the country in its nearest future.
What’s the main change you’ve made in the firm that will benefit clients?
The main change that we could have made in the firm to guarantee more benefit to our Client is the approach – i.e. to solve the problems and tasks set by the Client. Many years ago, we realized that the traditional, so-called “legal approach” to solving client problems is not always uniquely correct and not always economically beneficial for our Client, even if it is 100% clean and legally correct.
Therefore, a joint and unanimous decision was approved by all partners of the company to change the approach to solving client problems, namely, to search for the right solutions not only from a legal point of view but also from a business point of view. Therefore, to qualitatively fulfil the tasks, set by the Client, the key partners of the firm decided to obtain additional business education and knowledge in business schools in Ukraine and the world. As a result, the partners take turns (to decrease the adverse consequences for our business associated with the absence of the company for the period of study) enter the business school and get the necessary knowledge, skills, and experience.
We are absolutely sure that such changes will definitely help us bring additional benefits for our Clients and for ourselves.
Is technology changing the way you interact with your clients, and the services you can provide them?
Technologies have a significant impact on the business as a whole, and on the legal niche in particular, by way of simplifying and making possible fast communication, facilitating interaction with the Client practically at any time from almost anywhere in the world.
Thanks to new technologies, many of the business and organizational processes in our firm have become automatic. Communication converted to online ceasing such things as quarantine, illness, or maternity leave to be a problem for the lawyer-Client to communicate. Every exchange of the information is remotely supported, thus, making legal support to be continuously provided.
One of the latest examples of the development of communication and interaction with the Client in our firm can be indicated by the presence on the DYNASTY LAW FIRM website (which is currently under the development) of a Client Account, which each of our clients individually can enter. In such a Client’s Space, the Client can find and receive all of the necessary and relevant information about the step-by-step way of the lawyers fulfilling their obligations regarding one case or another; the project budget; expenses; execution details; time spent on the case; view all the necessary documents related to the project and download them. All of this can be done at any time of the day. The abovementioned tech-benefits greatly simplify communication and the procedure for informing the Client about the circumstances of one’s case or project.
It is a must to note that we attach the highest importance to the need to protect information and data about customers and make every effort to prevent leakage or theft of data. Therefore, our newly furbished website will have a unique code making all the information safe.
Can you give us a practical example of how you have helped a client to add value to their business?
We always keep as the main aim for us to understand how the Client’s business is structured; study business model thoroughly; understand the business processes and look for where and in what we can bring additional benefit to our Clients.
One of the recent examples that can be provided was the case when we were dealing with the investigation of a variety of matters related to the foreign economic activity of one of our clients. While that investigation, we found out and strongly recommended our Client to protect his business and investments from illegal dumping actions of competitors or to initiate conducting a special trade investigation, which ultimately led to a positive result.
We are in constant contact with the owners and top managers of various businesses in Ukraine alongside knowing of each of our Clients’ businesses inside out. That helped us to be able to provide our clients with a potentially attractive and profitable business asset in the liquidation procedure of a bankrupt company, and we came up with an offer to our Client to recommend purchasing this asset from the auction. We were able to carry out business analysis of the prospects for the ownership and use of this asset by our client and calculated IRS its payback.
As a consequence of our actions and recommendations, the Client purchased this asset at the auction and successfully integrated it into its existing business and achieved increased productivity and profitability.
Are clients looking for stability and strategic direction from their law firms – where do you see the firm in three years’ time?
The stable position of the law firm in the market by its positive long-term development speaks for itself. It assures our clients with the correct and high-quality approach of organizing the legal business, making it credible. Many Clients understand that if we were able to properly build and develop a legal business, we can also help them in solving problems creating, and developing of their own business.
Starting in 2000 as a small regional law firm in Ukraine, today we have become a national law firm with two offices in Kiev and the Dnipro, which allows us to provide services almost throughout Ukraine. And membership in the international legal alliance ALLY LAW, the participants of which we became a year and a half ago, allows us, with the help of our alliance partners, to provide legal assistance to our clients almost all over the world. Therefore, as our immediate goals, we set not only the entry into the TOP-10 of leading Ukrainian law firms, but also strengthening the company’s position in the international legal market.
To conclude, in three years’ time, we see our company not only as a law firm providing legal assistance. We see our further development as a legal & investment company that offers decisions for and investing funds in various business projects and provides management services. For these purposes, the company is currently in the process of rebranding to change its name to DYNASTY LAW & INVESTMENT.