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De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek

Amsterdam

De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek - Amsterdam
  • Claude Debussylaan 80
  • Amsterdam
  • North Holland
  • Netherlands
  • 1082 MD
  • Managing Partner: Martijn Snoep
  • Number of partners: 65
  • Number of lawyers: 330
  • Languages: Dutch, English, French, German, Spanish, Chinese
  • INTERNATIONAL OFFICES The firm also has offices based in New York, Beijing and Singapore.

Firm Overview:
The firm stands beside clients wherever they operate globally. This is the keystone of the firm’s focus. Whether in the Netherlands or abroad, it delivers a powerful corporate and finance practice, a centre of excellence in litigation and arbitration, and an unparalleled team of regulatory experts. The firm’s role of trusted advisor is rooted in its history as a firm, and is integral to who they are today. From the home office in Amsterdam, the firm advises more than 70 per cent of the largest companies headquartered in the Netherlands. It accompanies clients abroad in their international transactions, litigation and regulatory work. This is why the firm has offices in strategic locations like Beijing, Brussels, London, New York and Singapore and works closely together with top-tier local counsel in all jurisdictions.

Main Areas of Practice:  

Corporate & Finance:
29 partners; 53 associates
•Advising ASML, on the development of a unique customer co-investment program, in which Intel, Samsung and TSMC participate
•Advising Philips Electronics (TV division) on its joint venture with Chinese conglomerate TPV Technology
•Advising international retailing group Ahold on its E350 million acquisition of online retailer Bol.com, and the E290 million acquisition of 82 supermarket stores from Jumbo / C1000
•Advising Rabobank Nederland on the acquisition of Friesland Bank
•Advising NXP on the divestment of high-speed data converter business to Integrated Device Technology, Inc. (IDT). The business has sales and production points in the United States, France, the Netherlands and China
Key Clients: Philips Electronics, AkzoNobel, NXP, Ahold, Schiphol Group, DSM, Rabobank.
Contact: Kees Peijster (also member of the board)
Tel: +31 20 577 1906
Email: kees.peijster@debrauw.com

Litigation & Arbitration:
40 partners; 160 associates
•Representing NXP Semiconductors in ICC arbitration filed by STMicroelectronics
•Representing all major energy companies in the Netherlands in their claim against the State of the Netherlands regarding the loss of priority import capacity
•Advising insurer Achmea in an investment treaty arbitration under the Netherlands- Czechoslovakia Bilateral Investment Treaty. A claim was brought after the Slovak Republic had sought to reverse an earlier liberalisation of its health insurance sector
•Advising Sara Lee/DE Masterblenders 1753 as European lead counsel in multi-jurisdictional patent litigation initiated by Nestlé, after Sara Lee’s entry into the market for Nespresso coffee machines capsules
•Advising Unilever in its battle against private labellers imitating its famous products, such as Ben & Jerry’s, Glorix, Robijn and Zwitsal
•Advising GasTerra, an international company trading in natural gas, on a $1.1 billion UNCITRAL award against Italian energy company Eni in a dispute over the price payable under one of two long-term gas supply contracts
Key Clients: Shell, Philips Electronics Achmea, Unilever, GasTerra
Contact: Marc Ynzonides (also member of the board)
Tel: +31 20 577 1805
Email: marc.ynzonides@debrauw.com

Regulatory:
14 partners; 49 associates
•Representing Philips and Philips Pension Fund in the largest criminal financial fraud matter in Dutch legal history, in connection with the criminal proceedings brought by the Dutch Public Prosecutions Office, the dealings with the Dutch Central Bank and the AFM, and the ensuing civil litigation to recover the losses suffered as a result of the fraud, as well as conducting one of the largest and most high-profile internal investigations into fraud in the Netherlands to date
•Representing Shell in its appeal before the European courts against the fine of E160 million imposed by the European Commission for its alleged participation in a rubber cartel
•Advising AkzoNobel on obtaining unconditional merger control clearance for the acquisition of the global powder coatings business of Dow Chemical (EU and worldwide)
•Representing Rabobank as lead counsel in the worldwide investigations into the LIBOR submission process
Key Clients: Shell, Philips Electronics, DSM, AkzoNobel, GasTerra, Rabobank
Contact: Martijn Snoep (managing partner)
Tel: +31 20 577 1365
Email: martijn.snoep@debrauw.com

Areas of Practice

  • Banking & Finance
  • Capital Markets
  • Corporate / M&A
  • Corporate Governance
  • Corporate Recovery & Insolvency
  • Employment & Employee benefits
  • Energy, Infrastructure & Natural Resources
  • EU Law, Competition & Regulation
  • Financial Markets Regulation
  • ICT & Telecoms
  • Insurance
  • Intellectual Property
  • Investment Management
  • Litigation & Arbitration
  • Media, Sports & Entertainment
  • Mediation
  • Pensions
  • Private Equity
  • Real Estate
  • Regulatory & Criminal Enforcement
  • Tax
  • Transportation

Branches

  • 125 Old Broad Street,
  • 17th Floor,
  • London,
  • Greater London
  • UK
  • EC2N 1AR
  • Tel +44 20 7374 0086
  • Fax +44 20 7337 3520
  • Email : london@debrauw.com
  • De Meeûssquare 40,,
  • 1000 Brussels,
  • Brussels,
  • Brussels Capital Region
  • Belgium
  • Tel +32 2 545 1100
  • Email : brussels@debrauw.com

Competition/European Law - Belgium

This firm is classed as a "Other Noted Firm".

Other Noted Firms are firms that are active in this practice area but have not yet been ranked.

Corporate/M&A - Europe-wide

What the team is known for Enjoys an excellent reputation for corporate/M&A transactions in the Netherlands, and works closely with its 'best friends' network of European law firms on pan-European deals.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The Dutch M&A team is very smart and has very good opinions on foreign deals." 

Work highlights Advised Dutch company CNH on its cross-border merger with Italian Fiat Industrial for the creation of a new Dutch top holding, creating the world's third largest capital goods group by sales.

Represented the Federal Republic of Germany in the comprehensive restructuring of the existing shareholder pact relating to EADS.

Notable practitioners

Pierre Nijnens heads the corporate/M&A department at the firm.

Significant clients Philips, TenneT, Akzo Nobel, Rabobank, ABN AMRO.

Banking & Finance - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 22 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Corporate leader with an excellent reputation for work on the borrower side. Noted experience in refinancing and restructuring, and extensive capabilities in areas including structured finance, asset finance and project finance. Renowned regulatory know-how around banking and financial markets.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Practical and solution-driven, with a focus on building the relationship with the client."

"The lawyers are keen to put a deal together rather than just being keen to prove how smart they are, which is why we respect them."

Work highlights Assisted leading Dutch food group VION with its refinancing, as well as with the expansion of its EUR1.1 billion senior facilities.

Advised Achmea on the refinancing of its EUR750 million multicurrency revolving credit facility.

Notable practitioners  

Financing and regulatory practitioner Jan Marten van Dijk recently advised on the finance aspects of Philips' joint venture with TPV Technology. He is held in high regard among clients, with interviewees highlighting his desire to solve problems and his "very clinical point of view."

The "brilliant" Francine Schlingmann is described as "a very clever lawyer who is hugely respected in the market." She is particularly well known for her expertise in the financial markets regulatory sphere.

Berend Crans has a broad financing practice which includes a focus on project and asset finance, with notable niche expertise in aviation finance. His recent work includes assisting China Development Bank with three loans made to Telefónica Europe and FinanCell to fund the purchase of Chinese telecoms equipment.

Menno Stoffer covers general corporate finance, project finance and asset finance, and also leads the firm's PPP group. He recently advised VION on its refinancing.

Niek Biegman is noted by sources for his ability to find solutions: "He is excellent at mediating when there is a deadlock in negotiations. He is very diplomatic and creative in finding solutions, which is very constructive." 

Significant clients Akzo Nobel, Fugro, Imtech, Unilever.

Capital Markets - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 5 partners
- 14 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Market-leading ECM team covering major IPOs and a range of listed and unlisted share issues. Respected debt advisers handling issues including bond programmes, structured products and restructuring. Excellent financial regulatory expertise. The team is particularly visible acting for corporates.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The team doesn't disappoint - first-class legal advice."

"The team offers a high-quality service. The lawyers are really responsive and provide practical advice."

Work highlights Advised D.E. Master Blenders on its IPO on NYSE Euronext Amsterdam following its spin-off from Sara Lee.

Assisted Royal Imtech with a EUR100 million US private placement.

Notable practitioners  

Leading ECM practitioner Jan Willem Hoevers has a broad practice and is especially recommended as "the one to go to for share buy-backs." Another client adds: "He has been in the business for many years. He keeps calm and knows how to de-escalate situations." He recently advised Koninklijke Reesink on a private placement and equity facility designed to fund M&A transactions.

Joost Schutte covers both debt and equity mandates. Clients endorse his "very good commercial perspective and creativity in problem solving." He represented the underwriters, including the joint global co-ordinators JPMorgan Securities and Morgan Stanley, in Ziggo's IPO on NYSE Euronext Amsterdam.

Significant clients Royal Ahold, ASML, ING, SNS REAAL, Unilever.

Competition/European Law - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 4 partners
- 20 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Stellar team with an excellent reputation for cross-border mandates, on which it collaborates closely with colleagues in Brussels. Has extensive expertise in the energy, telecommunications, aviation and railways sectors, and a formidable record in follow-on damages litigations. Highly recommended by clients for merger control, cartel and abuse of dominance proceedings.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Truly committed - if you need the team it is truly there. There is not a topic where it doesn't have a strong lawyer there; they can help you with all the issues of a complex case."

"It is a strong team -  even the younger associates are very hard-working and well educated in their fields."

Work highlights Successfully secured damages for client TenneT against ABB and Alstom with regard to the gas insulated switchgear cartel.

Advised rail transportation company NS Reizigers on the merger clearance aspects of its acquisition of a competitor's travel information arm.

Notable practitioners  

Clients describe Jolling de Pree as "one of the top lawyers in the Netherlands for knowledge and experience," adding: "He knows our business very well and is good at giving practical advice rather than just options. He is also always very up to date on the political agenda." He recently won an 80% reduction on fines for German baking products company Werhahn Mühlen, which is alleged to have participated in a flour cartel.

Managing partner Martijn Snoep is a well-respected competition law practitioner.

Top-ranked Erik Pijnacker Hordijk receives outstanding feedback highlighting his knowledge and commercial insight. Clients report: "He is very helpful and highly respected - if he reaches a conclusion, we know it is well formed."

The "excellent" Douwe Groenevelt is based in Brussels and works closely with the Amsterdam team on competition mandates.

Significant clients AstraZeneca, Akzo Nobel, Philips, Schiphol Group, Unilever.

Corporate/M&A - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 22 partners  
- 50 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Heavyweight independent firm with an exceptionally strong corporate client base. Leading M&A practice offering diverse, in-depth expertise, and highlighted by interviewees for its innovative approach. Recognised strength in corporate governance and group structuring mandates.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"De Brauw is the benchmark for other law firms - the team does an excellent job and provides an extremely high level of service."

"The lawyers are great partners in negotiations - sharp, pragmatic and solution-oriented."

What's new? The firm opened a Singapore office in 2012, headed by corporate partner Dieter Wolff. Gaby Smeenk was promoted to partner in 2013.  

Work highlights Advised ASML on the creation of an innovative investment programme allowing customers to purchase shares in the company in order to fund research and development.

Assisted Akzo Nobel with the USD1.05 billion sale of its North American Decorative Paints business to PPG.

Notable practitioners  

M&A powerhouse Arne Grimme is singled out by sources for his expertise and experience. His key clients include Rabobank, which he assisted with the EUR1.935 million sale of a 90.01% interest in Robeco to ORIX.

The respected Bernard Roelvink represented Fugro in the EUR1.2 billion sale of its geoscience division to CGGVeritas, as well as assisting with the subsequent establishment of a joint venture between the two companies.

Paul Cronheim is valued by clients for his negotiation abilities, with one source saying: "What made him stand out was his ability to put himself in the shoes of the other side. He really bridged the gap between the parties." He advised the German state on the restructuring of EADS's shareholder structure.

Pierre Nijnens is described as a "very seasoned" practitioner for M&A and joint ventures.

Klaas de Vries advises on M&A transactions and restructurings, with a strong emphasis on insolvency law. He assisted Royal Ahold with its EUR350 million acquisition of online retailer Bol.com.

Significant clients ABN AMRO, Achmea, Philips.

Dispute Resolution - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 35 partners
- 125 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Impressive national heavyweight with a prestigious dispute resolution practice which is highlighted for its strength in depth. Renowned Supreme Court capabilities and extensive arbitration experience. Key areas of activity including commercial disputes and class actions.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"I find the lawyers' creativity around strategies very impressive - they are very proactive." 

Work highlights Advised Shell on a notable dispute with Milieudefensie concerning environmental pollution in the Niger Delta caused by three oil spills.

Assisted YUKOS subsidiaries and their management with the preservation and recovery of assets after the expropriation of the company by the Russian government.

Notable practitioners  

Marnix Leijten acts for major international clients in domestic and international litigations and arbitrations. He represented Achmea in arbitration proceedings against the Slovakian government, following the state's decision to reverse the liberalisation of its health insurance sector. One source notes: "He is quick and can be very assertive, but also very thoughtful if needed."

Ruud Hermans engages in corporate litigation for multinational clients, including cases before the Supreme Court. He is recommended for his "perseverance and strategic strength."

Maarten Schenck is a leading Supreme Court litigator with a wide commercial focus and a practice covering liability issues, tax and insolvency.

Bommel van der Bend is highlighted for his work in the energy sector. His recent activity includes acting in proceedings involving YUKOS.  

Harm-Jan de Kluiver is praised by sources because "his advice goes beyond the typical lawyer's advice. He has an academic brain but also gives the commercial side." He is acting for Ageas, formerly Fortis, in a number of claims rooted in the group's state bailout.

Supreme Court specialist Jan de Bie Leuveling Tjeenk is noted by interviewees as "a trustworthy and solid litigator." He has recently taken a lead role on major cases involving Shell and YUKOS.

Practice head Marc Ynzonides is exceptionally well regarded for his Supreme Court litigation work.

Supreme Court specialist Berto Winters's practice covers a range of issues including corporate governance and insolvency. He is assisting with various litigations related to the Ageas affair.

Significant clients Akzo Nobel, GasTerra, GDF SUEZ, Philips, Unilever.  

Employment - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 4 partners
- 16 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for First-class employment team with an impressive transactional and standalone practice spanning the full range of issues, from mass dismissals to industrial action. Recent areas of focus include high-profile dismissals, pensions and age discrimination cases. Clients benefit from the team's deep experience in employment disputes before the Dutch Supreme Court.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The firm has a very broad spectrum of expertise, covering employment and pension law as well as corporate and tax advice."

"With regard to pension law, the lawyers engage proactively, give great advice, and are willing to stick their necks out. They also have excellent technical knowledge." 

Work highlights Represented trade union FNV Bondgenoten before the Supreme Court in a successful proceeding that established a right to three hours' full pay for workers on stand-by contracts.

Advised Unilever on the outsourcing of some of its facilities management employees and the associated transitory social plan. Also advised on possible litigation after rejection of the social plan and the ensuing strike by employees.

Notable practitioners  

Clients describe top-rated pensions and employment partner Evert-Jan Henrichs as "a creative lawyer who is always looking for opportunities to get things done." Clients praise his willingness to think outside the box and his well-honed litigation and advisory skills, adding: "He is punctual and trustworthy, and always lives up to what he has promised."

Interviewees consider Stefan Sagel to be "an authority on employment law." He advised Capgemini on litigation resulting from the move of ten of its employees to competitor Deloitte.

Significant clients Royal Ahold, Shell, Reed Elsevier, Philips, Capgemini. 

Energy & Natural Resources - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 19 partners
- 33 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Full-service practice providing outstanding transactional support, expert regulatory advice, and representation in contentious matters. Valued for its deep understanding of the energy sector and pragmatic advice. A trusted adviser to major players such as TenneT and Gasunie.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The partners are very knowledgeable. Usually the cases are quite complex and I am always impressed with the deep market knowledge that the partners exhibit."

"In talks with clients and us, the lawyers make connections quickly and lead the clients to important conclusions."

Work highlights Advised the Nederlandse Aardolie Maatschappij (NAM) on legal issues connected to earthquakes caused by gas production in Groningen, including claims amounting to EUR1 billion.

Advised GDF SUEZ on various acquisitions of stakes in wind farms, an energy technology provider and other transactions.

Notable practitioners  

Anja Mutsaers is well known for her transactional practice for clients including TenneT and GDF SUEZ. Clients are impressed with the authority and gravitas she brings to discussions and negotiations.

Marnix Leijten is mainly involved in disputes in the energy sector, and recently advised GasTerra on its arbitration with Italian energy company Eni. Clients praise his "deep knowledge of the energy markets, natural authority, and credibility in discussions."

Significant clients Argos, National Grid, YUKOS, Gasunie, Vitol.  

Insurance - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 4 partners
- 16 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Best known for representing corporate claimants in insurance disputes, with an impressive list of blue-chip clients from the Netherlands and abroad. Increasingly active on D&O and liability matters connected with distressed companies, and can also be relied upon for questions of coverage.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"De Brauw is certainly a front runner. It is legally clever and strategic, but also executes the process well. Also substantively very well experienced." 

Notable practitioners  

Newly promoted partner Dennis Horeman wins praise from clients for his technical knowledge, creativity and willingness to co-operate. One interviewee says: "He is very personable, but also very intelligent. Because he isn't aggressive, he is very good in procedures."

Sources describe Eelco Meerdink as "very intelligent, strategically clever and sharp." He heads the insurance practice at the firm and regularly represents major international companies in coverage disputes.

Significant clients Akzo Nobel, Allianz Global Investors, SNS Reaal, HDI Gerling, UVIT.

Intellectual Property - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department 
- 4 partners
- 1 of counsel
- 25 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Excellent IP team known for strength in depth and an enviable client base. Comprehensive coverage of litigious and transactional soft IP mandates, with a notable focus on trade marks, and a solid patent offering. Recommended for value-added services for clients, with specific praise for the team's popular IP Master Classes. Burgeoning life sciences group handling IP litigation in the sector.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Excellent services - the lawyers have a very good knowledge of our company and they tailor their advice to our needs."

What's new? Ilja Moree rejoined the team after a period in private practice at AstraZeneca. 

Work highlights Acted as lead European counsel to D.E. Master Blenders, formerly Sara Lee, in multi-jurisdictional patent litigation brought by Nestlé regarding capsules that are compatible with Nespresso coffee machines. 

Advised Shell on a case brought by Deep Water Slender Wells involving the alleged misappropriation of drilling technology.

Notable practitioners  

"Outstanding" IP litigator Tobias Cohen Jehoram handles a significant number of IP cases before the Dutch Supreme Court, recently representing Grupo Osborne in an alleged trade mark infringement case initiated by Red Bull. Clients are enthusiastic about his tactical guidance: "I appreciate his strategic skills regarding how to plan the litigation - what to do, what not to do and what steps to take." Other sources say: "He is skilful, has a passion in him and always wins." 

Koen Limperg is highlighted for his extensive IP litigation experience. In a notable mandate, he advised Philips in proceedings brought by Seb concerning the use of Google AdWords and advertising claims associated with its Airfryer product.

Patent specialist Gertjan Kuipers is appreciated for his "can-do mentality and for the fact that he is excellent at co-ordinating a cross-practice response." He was recently instructed by pharmaceutical company Ferring in relation to a multi-jurisdictional patent dispute with Allergan.

Jan Pieter Hustinx advises and litigates on patent issues, recently supporting Visys in patent infringement proceedings initiated by Belgian Electronic Sorting Technology (BEST). One client observes: "He is very thorough in his analyses and is inventive in finding new angles." 

Of counsel Ilja Moree has rejoined the firm after a period spent in-house. She has a broad IP practice encompassing trade mark and copyright law, as well as heading up the firm's life sciences group. Commentators are positive about her client-oriented style: "She is very client-focused and friendly in a professional way. She really thinks with and for the client." 

Significant clients Akzo Nobel, Procter & Gamble, Unilever, Nokia, PepsiCo.

Investment Funds - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department 
- 4 partners
- 17 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for A firm favourite among pension funds, as well as financial institutions, insurance groups, and other institutional investors. Widely acknowledged as a top choice for all manner of financial regulation, with recent work covering the impact of EU directives AIFMD, Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID) and Solvency II. Also visible advising on innovative investment structures and asset pooling.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Expertise in advising diverse international investors investing from different types of vehicle and jurisdictions into Dutch funds."

Work highlights Advised international food service group Royal Ahold's pension fund on the outsourcing of the fiduciary management of its investment portfolio to AXA Investment Managers.

Acted for the Dutch Association of Listed Real Estate Investment Companies on matters relating to the AIFMD for Dutch-listed real estate investment companies.

Notable practitioners  

Department head Kees Groffen is a prominent name within the funds market and is described by clients as "hands-on and fast." He was lead counsel to Prime Ventures on the structuring of its fourth fund and assists domestic and foreign investors. He focuses on private equity funds, retail funds, asset pooling and regulatory matters.

Bernard Spoor "is very efficient in his drafting, experienced, and pleasant to deal with," say clients, who value his "diligence and attention to detail." He led the team advising the Dutch Association of Listed Real Estate Investment Companies on matters relating to the AIFMD.

Interviewees appreciate Francine Schlingmann's excellent client service, as well as her "deep knowledge of the Dutch regulatory environment and experience working with institutional investors." Her recent work highlights include advising Royal Ahold's pension fund on the outsourcing of the fiduciary management of its investments portfolio to AXA Investment Managers.

Significant clients Rabobank, Robeco, Avedon Capital Partners, BlackRock, ING Investment Management.

Private Equity - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 10 partners
- 36 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Distinguished private equity practice encompassing M&A, venture capital investments, LBOs and public-to-private transactions. Handles deals in the high-end and upper mid-market. Valued for financing experience and the team's innovative approach to the structuring of transactions.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The firm is very creative on the structuring side and the lawyers really think with you. It is our number-one firm."

"The firm is really strong in financing and the legal aspects around the financial documents."

What's new? The team has developed an innovative iPad app for its clients that encompasses a database detailing all public offers since 2007.

Work highlights Representing Waterland Private Equity in its sale of Intertrust to The Blackstone Group via a controlled auction.

Instructed by Royal Ahold on its EUR350 million acquisition of Bol.com from Cyrte Investments and NPM Capital.

Advised AAC Capital Partners and Allianz Capital Partners on the sale of the activities of Dutch publishing group Sdu to Editions Lefebvre Sarrut, a French publishing company.

Notable practitioners  

Paul Cronheim is an M&A lawyer with a significant practice in private equity transactions. He assisted AxLoad, a supplier of lifting and cargo securing products, with its acquisition of Mennens Group from De Hoge Dennen Capital.  

The "impressive" Arne Grimme is recognised for his superb negotiation skills and ability to "create common ground in the deal room." Clients say: "He brings great value to the process as he's an extremely good deal maker. He is pragmatic and he doesn't overcomplicate things." Grimme advised AAC Capital Partners on its acquisition of Salad Signature and its subsidiaries from Gilde Equity Management.

Significant clients KKR, Madison Capital Partners, Rabo Private Equity, Silver Lake, Sun European Partners.

Public Law - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 15 partners

What the team is known for Leading Dutch firm with a strong focus on advising high-profile national and international clients on planning and environmental permits for large-scale infrastructure and construction projects. Substantial experience dealing with regulatory bodies, with an excellent reputation for arguing cases before the Council of State.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"De Brauw is extremely experienced in the work that we do. It can explain our business as well as the law to the authorities, and is great at translating technical matters into clear legal arguments."

"The team organises itself well internally. This is one of the strengths of De Brauw - it has a holistic, integrated approach which really makes it stand out."

Work highlights Advised Gasunie on the preparation of a zoning and planning permit request for the expansion of its gas transport network.

Advised electricity transmission system operator TenneT on the planning and zoning aspects of the Randstad 380 kV project.

Notable practitioners  

Clients describe public law team head Nicolien van den Biggelaar as "an excellent lawyer" who "has in-depth knowledge of the processes surrounding important decisions and understands that the legal aspects are only one cog in a bigger machine." Interviewees praise her experience in dealing with public authorities.

Significant clients Akzo Nobel, NAM, BAM, Typhoon Offshore, Tata Steel.

Real Estate - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 9 partners
- 25 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Strong multidisciplinary team covering a broad range of real estate matters. It serves national and international companies and real estate investors, and earns praise for its consistently excellent client service.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"We had a lot of contact with both the partners and associates and we can approach them about minor matters without being billed. We have a very smooth co-operation."

Work highlights Advised Philips on the EUR425 sale of its High Tech Campus in Eindhoven to a consortium of private investors.

Assisted investment fund Vesteda with the EUR50 million sale of the De Boompjes residential complex in Rotterdam.

Notable practitioners  

Annemieke Wessels focuses on real estate finance and transactions. She is lauded for her pragmatism and ability to carefully listen to clients. One source reports: "She is diligent and precise. She can work through an enormous amount of work while keeping a clear overview."

Significant clients Stork, BAM, Havenbedrijf Rotterdam, Shell, TenneT.

Restructuring/Insolvency - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 6 partners
- 29 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Recognised for both contentious and non-contentious advice. Recent track record in high-profile international restructurings involving corporate groups and financial institutions. Active in legislative discussions surrounding bankruptcy.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The team is committed and dedicated, and the co-ordination of files and communication is handled very well."

"The lawyers are very client-friendly - they will really go the extra mile."

Work highlights Advised VION Food Group on the renegotiation of its credit and debt facilities as part of a financial and corporate restructuring.

Assisted Rabobank with the distressed takeover of Friesland Bank.

Notable practitioners  

Department head Ruud Hermans wins praise for his keen strategic abilities, with clients saying: "He is very intelligent. Strategically he is like a chess player - he is always thinking two or three steps ahead." He recently advised various major Dutch banks, including Rabobank, ABN AMRO and ING, on the minimisation of their exposure to the bankruptcy of DSB Bank. 

Litigator Berto Winters was part of the team representing VION Food Group in its financial and corporate restructurings. Sources say: "He is very to the point and provides concise advice."

Significant clients Egeria, Imtech, One Equity Partners, Endemol.

Tax - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 3 partners
- 10 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Strong transaction-driven tax team, with additional experience in tax litigation. Works closely with its overseas offices on cross-border mandates, particularly in Beijing and Singapore. Praised by clients for its flexible and collaborative approach. Notable activity advising funds on alternative investments.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The lawyers are really well prepared and on the ball."

What's new? Dutch rail operator NS is a new client for the team.

Work highlights Advised Cerberus Capital Management on the tax aspects of a number of transactions, including the distressed acquisition of a real estate portfolio. 

Notable practitioners  

Department head and "world-class lawyer" Paul Sleurink wins effusive praise from clients and peers alike: "He is very commercial and personable, with considerable expertise. He is able to translate the complexities of a legal position into a clear strategy by breaking it down and going through it step by step."

Significant clients Royal Ahold, Akzo Nobel, Cabot Corporation, Intel, Philips, Rabobank.

TMT - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department 
- 3 partners
- 15 other qualified lawyers

What the team is known for Brilliant technology practice with notable knowledge of cloud-related transactions. Continues to be a formidable figure in outsourcing projects in the financial services sector, as well as handling global compliance and litigation matters. Also assists with transactional work in the telecoms sector.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The team is extremely familiar with commercial processes and is a proactive business partner. Its advice is trustworthy, reliable and pragmatic."

"We get accurate, timely and practical advice from the team." 

What's new? New clients include adidas and PostNL.

Work highlights Assisted Philips with one of the first EU authorisation applications for Binding Corporate Rules for processors.

Notable practitioners  

Bart van Reeken remains a strong name in the outsourcing arena. Clients praise his balanced negotiation style and "his in-depth knowledge and ability to point out the most important issues in a deal without giving an exhaustive enumeration of them."

Lokke Moerel "is an authority on data protection matters," according to sources. In a recent highlight she assisted Philips with its Binding Corporate Rules application.

Significant clients Akzo Nobel, D.E Master Blenders 1753, Heineken, Royal Ahold, Shell.

Transportation - Netherlands

Basic facts about the department
- 11 partners

What the team is known for Renowned multi-departmental practice with impressive aircraft financing capabilities. Boasts highly impressive aviation tax and financing knowledge, as well as assisting with insurance and liability issues. Also acts on railway-related projects.

Work highlights Assisted AWAS Aviation Capital with two transactions involving the purchase of Airbus A320-200 aircraft for a total value of EUR67.5 million.

Advised US Ex-Im Bank on a combined transaction and lease financing of four Sikorsky S-92A helicopters.

Notable practitioners  

Acknowledged senior statesman Berend Crans maintains a broad financing practice, and is particularly strong on asset and project financings. His aircraft financing work is particularly commended by sources.

Significant clients Schiphol Airport, AerCap, BBAM Aircraft Leasing & Management, Boeing, DVB Bank.