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A significant anniversary inevitably causes us to reflect upon the period gone by. The sub-prime mortgage crisis in the US started in 2007 and, after spreading to other countries, became the global financial crisis that caused the longest-lasting recession of the post-war era. This recession, in conjunction with other factors, triggered sweeping changes in the Hungarian legal market. In retrospect, clear, recognizable patterns have emerged in the ten years since then. 

Clifford Chance and Dentons are reporting that the EUR 650 million sale of a 265,000 square meter CEE retail portfolio by CBRE Global Investors to CPI Property Group that was initially reported in January closed on March 29, 2017, and more information has been learned about the structuring of the deal and the firms involved.

Hogan Lovells has advised Arcus Infrastructure Partners on the acquisition of an 85% stake in the Gdansk Transport Company S.A., a special purpose company set up in 1996 to pursue the DBFMO project for the northern section of the AmberOne A1 motorway concession in Poland. The acquisition was a multi-step transaction, involving Arcus's acquisition of NDI Autostrada sp. z o.o. (NDIA), which owns a 25.31% stake in GTC, from Grupa NDI and Transport Infrastructure Investment Company (TIIC). As part of the acquisition, NDIA also exercised its right of first refusal on A1 Invest AB Skanska’s 30% stake and on John Laing Infrastructure Limited's 29.7% interest in GTC, taking NDIA’s ownership in GTC to 85%, with Intertoll Europe retaining the residual 15% shareholding and remaining the operator of the A1 motorway. Norton Rose Fulbright advised Grupa NDI and TIIC, CMS advised John Liang, and DLA Piper advised Skanska.

Marian Dinu, Country Managing Partner at DLA Piper Dinu SCA, starts his report of the Buzz in Romania on the subject of the protests in Bucharest and throughout the country at the end of January and the beginning of February that generated media attention around the world following the ordinance bills proposed by the Romanian Ministry of Justice and secretly approved by the government regarding the pardoning of certain committed crimes and the amendment of the Penal Code of Romania (especially regarding the abuse of power).  

In accordance with the Central Credit Register Act (Official Gazette of the Republic of Slovenia, No. 77/16; "ZCKR"), the Bank of Slovenia established a centralised database of the indebtedness of private individuals and business entities (Central Credit Register; "CKR") in order to enable more efficient managing of credit risks and ensure more vigilant lending.

On 7 December 2016 the Slovak legislator adopted in a shortened legislative procedure the amendment to the Slovak E-Government Act (Zakon c. 305/2013 Z. z. o elektronickej podobe vykonu posobnosti organov verejnej mocia o zmene a doplneni niektorych zakonov v zneni neskorsich predpisov).

Storing and filing of emails often happens without much attention. While the employer does have a legitimate interest in information and control of the email traffic at the workplace, this can present a high degree of risk if employees are left alone with the responsibility of storing and filing emails correctly and appropriately.

On the evening of February 1, 2017, CEE Legal Matters hosted the first ever CEELM Budapest Law Firm Bowling Challenge: A competition of four-person teams from leading law firms in Hungary, with all proceeds to go to the winner’s charity of choice. A total of 13 law firms competed for the impressive trophy – and the glory that goes along with it.

The aspect of the choice of law governing an agreement in view of mandatory rules of a jurisdiction other than that of the governing law but to which a transaction is somehow connected has become relevant in a number of pending derivatives litigation cases across various European jurisdictions.

Technological innovation in financial markets continues its inexorable advance. Alternative payment methods (such as e-money and peer-to-peer payment), alternative finance (such as peer-to-peer lending and crowdfunding), blockchain-based clearing and settlement, new insurance models, and virtual currency exchanges are only a few of the recent developments endeavoring to make the financial system more efficient.

Compared to its popularity in Anglo-American countries, crowd investing – which enables broad groups of investors to fund start-up companies and small businesses in return for equity – is still very young in Europe. If a crowd-invested business succeeds, then its value increases, as does the value of a share in that business. Neither banks, venture capitalists, angel investors, or other resources can fill the financing needs of start-up companies. Crowd investing can help to bridge this substantial financing gap. 

Michael Malloy, the Head of Intellectual Property and Technology for Russia at DLA Piper, first came to Russia in 1990, and he moved there for good in 1994. At DLA, where Malloy has been since 2008, he specializes in intellectual property and technology issues, and his work includes franchising, corporate law, media law, and technology transfers.