Corporate/M&A - Finland
Jan Örndahl heads the M&A practice, winning impressive plaudits from clients: "He was available and supportive, and answered our questions immediately." He recently acted for Nippon Kaiji Kyokai on its acquisition of Napa.
Jan Kuhlefelt is another prominent member of the team, and represented Viessmann Group in its acquisition of Norpe Group. "He is very reflective and has good connections in Finland. If I had a significant matter I would go to him," reports one client.
Sources are quick to highlight Kimmo Rekola as a strong choice for both venture capital and private equity mandates. He recently assisted Index Ventures with its acquisition of 16% of the shares in Supercell.
Senior partner Pekka Jaatinen is "just amazing," enthuse interviewees. He is particularly strong in restructuring and insolvency, but also active on M&A and corporate advisory mandates.
Russian-speaker Heidi Paalanen-Koev has impressive experience in advising Finnish clients on transactions involving Russia. She covers M&A and commercial agreements.
Foreign Desks The German desk handles M&A and dispute resolution matters. It advises German clients active in Finland and Finnish clients on their German activities. It also offers expertise of the wider DACH region (Germany-Austria-Switzerland). Uwe Uusitalo leads the desk, and Juha Väyrynen, Sakari Lukinmaa, Tapio Teräkivi and Janne Lauha are also key contacts.
A compact team supports the firm's Russian operations from the Helsinki office. It handles M&A and corporate and commercial mandates. Heidi Paalanen-Koev is the key contact.
Commentators agree that Johan Aalto "is one of the best M&A lawyers in Finland. He is smart, excellent in negotiations and offers great depth of legal expertise." He recently acted for Heineken International on its EUR470 million disposal of the entire share capital of Hartwall to Unibrew.
Managing partner Mikko Heinonen assisted Pohjola Bank with OP-Pohjola’s public tender offer for its shares. "He is splendid – a top choice for leading transactions," say clients. He has notable experience of public M&A mandates.
Department head Sten Olsson regularly advises leading private equity houses, recently acting for Advent International, ATP and Bain Capital on the DKK17 billion acquisition of Nets. One client comments: "If you need a lawyer to drive the deal forward, go to Sten. He is well connected with lots of experience and is very commercial."
Riikka Rannikko handles public and private M&A as well as IPOs, public tender offers and share offerings. She also handles compliance matters.
Anu Mattila is focused on advising clients on their activities in Russia. She covers real estate and investments, and also advises foreign companies on Russian corporate issues.
M&A practice head Jouni Salmi acted for Fortum on the sale of its electricity distribution business in Finland. "He is very to the point, efficient, prudent and proactive in his work. He is also fun to work with and easygoing," enthuse sources.
Jon Unnérus is "very commercial. He is great at translating the commercial dynamics into a legal document. He is easy to get on with and accessible," say clients. He leads the firm's private equity team and recently assisted Dynea Chemicals with the disposal of Prefere Resins Company to Capiton.
The "responsive and diligent" Paula Linna recently acted for McAfee on its voluntary recommended public tender offer for Stonesoft's shares and option rights. She is an accomplished public M&A adviser.
Manne Airaksinen heads the corporate advisory team and is widely recognised as "one of the leading company law experts in Finland. He literally wrote the law in the area." He was part of the team advising Nokia on its EUR1.7 billion acquisition of Siemens' stake in Nokia Siemens Networks.
Toni Siimes handles M&A and corporate advisory matters, winning praise for his technical skill. He recently advised Triton Partners on its disposal of Puukeskus to DT Group.
Jan-Anders Wik leads the firm's Helsinki office. He covers corporate advisory and private and public M&A, with particular experience in advising financial institutions.
Christian Wik heads the firm's competition team. He has extensive experience in advising on merger filings at an EU level.
Stockholm-based Mårten Willamo is Finnish-qualified and previously worked in the firm's Helsinki office. He regularly handles Finland-Sweden mandates.
Head of M&A Timo Airisto recently represented Kemira in the sale of its formic acid business to Taminco. Clients comment: "He is superb. He has substantive expertise and expertly handles difficult negotiations with a calm and productive demeanour. Timo consistently displays the characteristics clients want to see in a transactional adviser."
Petri Haussila has a superb reputation in this field. He is a hugely experienced public M&A adviser, recently assisting Metso with its demerger.
Risto Ojantakanen "is technically strong and you can really see he makes good use of his experience," note interviewees. His practice covers restructuring, corporate advisory and public and private M&A.
Janko Lindros covers a range of corporate matters, including M&A, joint ventures and restructurings. He has impressive international experience. "He knows our company so well he has a headstart. He really looks to solve problems; I would use him for complicated cross-border M&A transactions," said one interviewee.
Senior partner Jyrki Tähtinen is an enormously accomplished practitioner in this area. He covers M&A and restructuring, and has particular experience of private equity.
Jari Vikiö is also highly regarded for his work on private equity transactions. Sources say: "I envy him! He is the type of guy who always says yes - he has a can-do attitude. He is very good indeed."
Ari Kaarakainen recently acted for the National Emergency Supply Agency (NESA) on the acquisition of a business and fleet of five oil tankers and other vessels from Neste Oil. He heads the practice.
Andreas Doepel leads the corporate advisory team, and also handles M&A.
Associate Sha Wang is Chinese-qualified and a native Mandarin speaker. She advises Chinese clients active in Finland and Finnish clients on Chinese matters.
Foreign Desks This firm's China desk handles both inbound and outbound mandates across a range of areas. It covers M&A, IP, investments and natural resources. Samuli Simojoki heads the desk; Sha Wang is another key member of the team.
The Russia desk handles cross-border transactions and regularly advises on tax structuring issues. It draws on lawyers across the firm's Baltic offices. Mika Salonen and Johan Roman are active members of the desk.
Practice head Ulf-Henrik Kull acted for MB Funds on the disposal of Norpe to the Viessmann Group. He wins notable praise from clients: "He is extremely commercial - he understands what we are trying to achieve. He understands the financial perspective and quickly learns new things."
Managing partner Carl-Henrik Wallin acted for Alma Media on its joint venture with Monster Worldwide. "He is a valuable adviser - he is very experienced, with a good feeling for the Finnish market," report clients.
Mathias Lindqvist is highlighted for his expertise on real estate transactions, advising Pontos on the acquisition of a majority interest in NREP C1. He is described as "commercial and pragmatic. He knows what he is doing and gets to the point quickly."
Sources agree Ilkka Perheentupa "is really amazing! He is available 24/7 and is client-oriented, no-nonsense and straightforward." He recently assisted GE with its acquisition of Imbera Electronics.
Department head Mika Ståhlberg assisted HKScan with its disposal of Swedish Saturn Nordic Holding and Polish Sokolów to Danish Crown. He is a favourite with clients, who say: "He is a character! He is an excellent lawyer and a strong negotiator active on big M&A mandates."
Kimmo Mettälä's broad practice encompasses banking and finance, private equity and M&A. He advises both public and private companies.
Marcus Möller enters the rankings thanks to impressive feedback from commentators saying he is "exceptionally strong. He is very committed, energetic and pragmatic, and delivers very quickly." Möller recently acted for Diploma on its acquisition of Kentek.
Sami Martola is "brilliant. He is responsive and his work is of a perfect quality," enthuse clients. He handles M&A mandates, and has particular experience of the insurance sector.
Department head Matti Ylä-Mononen recently advised Sponsor Capital on the disposal of Lämpölux to CapMan. "He is pragmatic and deal-oriented, and does not get caught up in unnecessary details," report interviewees.
Sources are quick to highlight Jori Taipale as "trustworthy; he delivers on time and gives clear advice that is appreciated by our senior management." He recently acted for MB Funds on the sale of Forchem to Respol.
Harri Hynninen advised Espotel on the sales of its shares to Sponsor Capital and the company's management. His clients include private equity houses, financial institutions and clients from the TMT sectors.
Jan Ollila remains a valuable member of the team. He recently acted for Arrow Electronics on the Finnish elements of its EUR230 million acquisition of Computerlinks.
Department head Anders Carlberg advised Respol Group on its acquisition of Forchem. "He had a very commercial outlook and was knowledgeable about the Finnish business environment. He stood out compared to other lawyers we contacted," said one interviewee.
Mikko Eerola "is results-oriented and business-minded. He can see matters from our point of view and understand what we are aiming for," according to clients.
Antti Kuusimäki covers both M&A and corporate advisory mandates. He represents private equity houses and public and private companies.
Wilhelm Eklund handles M&A, private equity and corporate advisory matters, representing clients such as Ratos.
Firm founder Jan Waselius continues to command respect from sources: "He is very experienced and well connected internationally. He is trustworthy and reliable."
Since publication, Mikko Eerola has joined Dittmar & Indrenius
Bjørn Nykvist has particular experience in advising clients from the energy sector. "He is credible, pragmatic and dedicated to his clients. He is thorough and prepares for negotiations in great detail," say clients.
Foreign Experts (Based Abroad)
Dirk Kocher is based in Latham & Watkins' Hamburg office. He has extensive experience in advising on transactions with a Finnish element, and was previously active on the Finnish-German Trade Association.
Isabella Ramsay of Mannheimer Swartling is based in Stockholm. A native Finn, she is relationship partner for the firm's Finnish clients.
London-based Ian Ross of Ross & Co Solicitors has previously worked in Finland and regularly advises Finnish clients. He handles international trade issues.
Aku Sorainen of SORAINEN is Finnish-qualified and regularly advises Finnish clients active in the Baltic region.