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Tuxes and Triumph: A Night of Celebration at the DOTY Awards Banquet

Tuxes and Triumph: A Night of Celebration at the DOTY Awards Banquet

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CEE Legal Matters announced the CEE Deal of the Year Award Winners at its Second Annual DOTY Awards Banquet on March 28, 2019, with Allen & Overy and CMS among the night’s big winners.

Allen & Overy took home a remarkable ten awards on the night, including the award for Baltic Deal of the Year for its work on Blackstone Group’s acquisition of a majority stake in Luminor, while CMS took home seven, including the 2018 CEE Deal of the Year for its work on Advent’s Acquisition of Zentiva from Sanofi.

Also claiming awards for Deal of the Year based on their work on the Advent/Zentiva deal were Dentons, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Ropes & Gray, Kirkland & Ellis, and Tuca Zbarcea & Asociatii.

The CEE Deal of the Year Awards are the only regional legal awards that are purely peer-selected, taking advantage of CEE Legal Matters’ superior coverage of and connections in the region’s legal community [see box]. The awards are thus based exclusively on the votes of senior and experienced commercial lawyers in the region, who know best the particular challenges and complexities involved in making important deals happen and the significance such deals have both to the counties for which they are nominated and for the region as a whole. 

Responding to the cachet of the awards and the rare opportunity to gather with so many of their peers from across the region in one collegial and entertaining evening, over 90 lawyers from law firms across Central and Eastern Europe, the United States, and the United Kingdom gathered in the Budapest for the festivities.

“This was a fantastic evening,” said CEE Legal Matters Managing Editor Radu Cotarcea, who co-hosted the event with CEE Legal Matters Executive Editor David Stuckey. “This event celebrates top level lawyering throughout Central and Eastern Europe, and we’re delighted to have so many friends, new and old, join us.”

CMS Partner Graham Conlon, who beat a path to the stage to accept CMS’s many awards, expressed delight at his firm’s success in the evening. “We are proud and honored that the lawyers who vote on the various submissions recognized the value and complexity of the deals we were able to bring to completion in 2018. We appreciate the opportunity to celebrate our good year with our peers throughout the region, and we thank CEE Legal Matters for hosting this fantastic annual event.”

The DOTY Awards Banquet, which featured live music from Budapest’s Sentiments piano duo – led by Peter Lakatos, Managing Partner at Hungary’s Lakatos, Koves & Partners law firm– ended with the surprise announcement that the 2020 event will be held in London. More information on next year’s event will come soon.

This Year’s Deal of the Year Awards Final Selection Committee:

  • Katarina Mihalikova - Partner, Majernik & Mihalikova
  • Polina Lyadnova - Partner, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton
  • Ron Given - Partner, Wolf Theiss
  • Damir Topic - Partner, Divjak, Topic & Bahtijarevic
  • Gelu Maravela - Partner, Maravela|Asociatii (Romania)
  • Alexandra Doytchinova - Partner, Schoenherr (Bulgaria)
  • Bora Kaya - General Counsel, Gama Power Systems Engineering & Contracting
  • Pawel Szaja - Partner, Shearman & Sterling
  • Milan Samardzic - Partner, Samardic, Oreski & Grbovic 
  • Christian Blatchford - General Counsel, Energo-Pro
  • Rene Frolov - Partner, FORT Legal
  • Agnes Molnar - Senior Associate, Reed Smith
  • Jonathan Marks - Partner, Slaughter and May
  • Mykola Stetsenko - Partner, Avellum (Ukraine)
  • Hugh Owen - Owner, Go2Law

Winners of the Deal of the Year Awards:

  • Albania: The Republic of Albania’s Eurobond Issue and Tender (Dechert; Allen & Overy)
  • Austria: Vonovia’s Public Takeover of BUWOG (Schoenherr, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer) 
  • Bosnia & Herzegovina: ArcelorMittal Zenica, Finnfund, KPA Unicon Oy, and City of Zenica Public-Private Partnership (CMS and Karanovic & Partners) 
  • Bulgaria: OTP’s Acquisition of Societe Generale Expressbank and Subsidiaries (Schoenherr; CMS; Kalo & Associates; Jones Day) 
  • Croatia: Meteor Group’s Acquisition of Badel 1862 (Ostermann & Partners; Law Firm Svilar) 
  • Czech Republic: Advent’s Acquisition of Zentiva from Sanofi (CMS; Dentons; Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer; Ropes & Gray; Kirkland & Ellis; Tuca Zbarcea & Asociatii
  • Estonia: Blackstone Group’s Acquisition of a Majority Stake in Luminor (Ellex; COBALT; Allen & Overy; Hamilton Advokatbyra)
  • Greece: Bain Capital Credit’s Acquisition of Non-Performing and Credit Exposures from Piraeus Bank (Shearman & Sterling; Kirkland & Ellis; Karatzas & Partners; Andreas Angelidis & Associates; Allen & Overy; Koutalidis Law Firm; Zepos & Yannopoulos) 
  • Hungary: Vodafone’s Acquisition of Liberty Global’s Operations in Germany, Hungary, the Czech Republic, and Romania (CMS; Lakatos Koves & Partners; Shearman & Sterling; Slaughter & May; Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer; Ropes & Gray; Tuca Zbarcea & Asociatii
  • Latvia: Blackstone Group’s Acquisition of a Majority Stake in Luminor (Ellex; COBALT; Allen & Overy; Hamilton Advokatbyra) 
  • Lithuania: Blackstone Group’s Acquisition of a Majority Stake in Luminor (Ellex; COBALT; Allen & Overy; Hamilton Advokatbyra) 
  • Moldova: Acquisition by the EBRD, AB Invalda INVL, and Horizon Capital of Stake in Moldova Agroindbank from the Moldovan Government (Gladei & Partners; CMS; Efrim, Rosca & Associates) 
  • Montenegro: PPF Group’s Acquisition of Telenor’s Telecommunications Assets in CEE (Boyanov & Co.; Karanovic & Partners; White & Case; Latham & Watkins; Allen & Overy; Schoenherr; BDK Advokati; Szecskay Attorneys at Law; Djingov, Gouginski, Kyutchukov & Velichkov)
  • Poland: Polish Development Fund’s Acquisition of PESA Bydgoszcz S.A. (Linklaters; Weil Gotshal & Manges) 
  • Romania: Black Sea Oil & Gas EPCIC Contract with GSP Offshore (Ijdelea Mihailescu; Stronachs) 
  • Russia: Merger of CJSC Transmashholding and LocoTech-Service LLC (Herbert Smith Freehills; Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton; Allen & Overy; Harneys; Stibbe; Michael Kyprianou; Bellpark Legal) 
  • Serbia: Privatization of Belgrade’s Nikola Tesla Airport (Allen & Overy; Dentons; BDK Advokati; Andric Law Office; Vasilijevic Bogdanovic; CMS; Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe; Graf & Pitkowitz; Zivkovic | Samardzic) 
  • Slovakia: Zapadoslovenska Energetika’s Acquisition of the Malzenice Power Plant from E.ON (Allen & Overy; Kinstellar) 
  • Slovenia: Novo Ljubljanska Banka IPO (Clifford Chance; Shearman & Sterling) 
  • Turkey: Canakkale Motorway Project (Shearman & Sterling; Goksu Safi Isuk; Clifford Chance; Verdi Law Firm) 
  • Ukraine: SALIC’s Acquisition of Mriya Agro Holding (Redcliffe Partners; Hogan Lovells; Dickson Minto; Sayenko Kharenko) 
  • Baltic Deal of the Year: Blackstone Group’s Acquisition of a Majority Stake in Luminor (Ellex; COBALT; Allen & Overy; Hamilton Advokatbyra) 
  • CEE Deal of the Year: Advent’s Acquisition of Zentiva from Sanofi (CMS; Dentons; Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer; Ropes & Gray; Kirkland & Ellis; Tuca Zbarcea & Asociatii)   

This Article was originally published in Issue 6.3 of the CEE Legal Matters Magazine. If you would like to receive a hard copy of the magazine, you can subscribe here.

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