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“There are four main new legislative developments which have shaken the market in Latvia,” says Andra Rubene, Partner at TGS Baltic in Riga, who lists the GDPR, amendments to Latvia’s Law on the Prevention of Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing, and changes to the country’s corporate and personal income tax laws as of primary significance.

Sorainen and Brandl & Talos have advised investment company Novalpina on the public offer by its Odyssey Europe AS subsidiary to acquire all the shares in the listed Estonian gaming group Olympic Entertainment Group, following which — assuming shareholder approval — Odyssey will delist OEG from the Nasdaq Tallinn Stock Exchange, then merge the two companies.

Noerr was lead counsel to Union Tank Eckstein in relation to its acquisition of 51% of the shares of Polish company Timex Card, a franchisee and distributor of UTA service cards for car fleets issued by Union Tank Eckstein. Ellex advised UTA on Estonian, Latvian, and Lithuanian matters, Nobles advised UTA on Ukrainian law, and Stelios Americanos advised it on Cypriot law issues. The sellers depended on their in-house counsel, Agnieszka Slowiak.

The long-awaited tax reform has been finally approved by the Latvian parliament. Opposition to changes in such sensitive fields as taxes is inevitable, but it is clear now that the amendments to the country’s tax code will come into effect on January 1, 2018. 

Eversheds Sutherland Bitans has assisted BaltCap Infrastructure Fund in its EUR 9.45 million acquisition of shares in Latvian biogas businesses SIA AD Biogazes Stacija and SIA Aizkalnu Tehnika. Sorainen reportedly represented SIA Augstkalnu Druvas, the seller of the shares.

Changes in the Latvian tax system, the overall strength of the market, and the interest companies are showing in recent improvements to regulations relating to employee share options, along with the looming GDPR deadline, are all keeping law firms quite busy, says Eva Berlaus, Managing Partner at Sorainen Latvia. As a result, she admits to being quite pleased with the beginning of the year.

Latvian Knowledge Partner

COBALT is closely integrated alliance of top-tier law offices in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Belarus, making us one of the largest law firms in the Baltic market. 

COBALT is a trusted partner for daily matters and complex large-scale transactions and disputes. The firm’s broad spectrum of expertise and established position as the market leader give a comprehensive basis for providing advice on special areas of business law.

We advise top international and regional businesses, financial institutions, state and local governments, and the region’s most promising start-ups. We offer leading-edge solutions in key industry sectors: Consumer Products, Trade & Distribution, Real Estate & Construction, Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare, Energy & Utilities, Communications, Media & Technologies, Financial Services, Transport & Logistics.

COBALT has been named Baltic Law Firm of the Year 6 times. We were recognized as the Most Innovative Law Firm of the Year 2019 in the Baltics at the IFLR European Awards in London. COBALT also won CEE Legal Matters Deal of the Year Award for Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, as well as the overall Baltic Deal of the Year, at the 2019 CEE Legal Matters Awards. We have received multiple awards from the Chambers Europe, IFLR, The Lawyer and Mergermarket and we are regularly listed amongst the top performing M&A legal advisors in the Bloomberg, Thomson Reuters and Mergermarket deal tables

More information on Cobalt can be found at www.cobalt.legal

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