Sayenko Kharenko and Clifford Chance have advised Deutsche Bank on a EUR 349.3 million facility extended to Ukraine under a World Bank guarantee. Avellum and White & Case advised the Ukrainian Ministry of Finance on the deal.
If one is an example, two is a coincidence, and three is a trend, the three major law firm mergers in Ukraine this past summer demand closer scrutiny.
On July 9, 2018, the CEE Legal Matters website reported the merger of the Avellum and A.G.A. Partners law firms in Ukraine. A month later, the website reported on a second merger, this time between Asters and EPAP, the Ukrainian office of Russia’s Egorov Puginsky Afanasiev & Partners. And in September the website reported on yet another merger, between Integrites and Pravochyn. To explore these significant changes in the market, on October 26, 2018, CEE Legal Matters sat down with a collection of prominent Ukrainian lawyers — including several from firms directly involved in the summer’s mergers — at the Kyiv office of DLA Piper.
Currency regulations in Ukraine have always been among the most significant impediments to foreign investments and access of Ukrainian businesses to foreign markets. In 2014, substantial external imbalances, capital flight risks, and panic in the foreign exchange market prompted the National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) to adopt tight capital controls, a number of which remain in effect. Notwithstanding the alleged soundness of such temporary measures, both foreign investors and Ukrainian businesses have long called for clearer and more predictable currency regulations, as well as safeguards to protect their interests. In July 2018, Ukraine finally adopted the long-awaited “On Currency and Currency Transactions” law (the “Currency Law”) which is intended to replace the archaic currency control legislation. The effectiveness of the new legal framework, however, can only be assessed once the NBU lays out detailed rules in its regulations.
Avellum has advised FMO (the Dutch development bank) and Diligent Capital Partners on their joint acquisition of a 16% equity stake in Allseeds SA and on the successful application for Competition Authority approval. Hugh Owen, acting through Go2Law, advised FMO/DCP on matters of English law. Allen & Overy advised Allseeds on the deal.
Representatives of more than sixty law firms from across Central and Eastern Europe and from as far away as the United States, United Kingdom, and China came together in Prague on June 6, 2018, for the first ever Dealer’s Choice international law firm conference and CEE Deal of the Year Awards Banquet.