This firm appears in the Who's Who Legal 100 2014
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LAW FIRM OF THE YEAR - SPAIN
Uría Menéndez is named our Spanish firm of the year for the ninth time attesting to its continued leadership in the European legal market.
|Banking||4||Labour & Employment||5|
|Capital Markets||6||Life Sciences||5|
|Corporate Tax||4||Product Liability Defence||2|
|Information Technology||3||Real Estate||2|
|Insolvency & Restructuring||1||Telecoms & Media||1|
|Insurance & Reinsurance||2||Trademarks||1|
It was business as usual for the firm in 2013 as they continued to focus on consolidating their position. Indeed, there was only one lateral hiring at partner level: Jaime Alonso Gallo a specialist in the corporate crime field. Much of Uría Menéndez’s recent success is due to the strengthening of its global network. In 2009, the firm opened its office in Beijing, through which it has been able to assist stakeholders in the region with their outbound investments into Spain, Portugal and Latin America; a region in which the firm has five further offices. This is typified in the major role the firm played in the Beijing Enterprises Water Group Limited’s acquisition of Veolia Group’s Portuguese water supply and waste water management business.
|Total Listings in WWL||86||Established||1946|
|Home jurisdiction||Spain and Portugal||Total size of firm||877|
|Number of partners||116||Number of offices||15|
PEOPLE AND PRACTICES
Mergers and acquisitions remains the firm’s strongest suit. Christian Hoedl, who heads the M&A and private equity practice areas, demonstrates “extensive experience” in M&A and joint ventures and also advises on financing, directors’ bonuses and refinancing in private equity-owned companies. Juan Francisco Falcón co-heads the firm’s M&A and private equity practice, and while his practice has a particular emphasis on M&A law his “experience” also extends to air transport law and aircraft financing. He has an “outstanding reputation” as a legal advisor to proprietors, landlords, tenants, and financial brokers. Salvador Sánchez-Terán is another leading player in the M&A market; he has “unrivalled” knowledge of corporate transactions involving credit entities and the development of new financial instruments. The “exceptional” Rafael Sebastián is also recommended for his capital markets expertise covering structured finance and debt and equity transactions.
The firm has a “solid reputation” in the project finance market. Juan Martín Perrotto, head of the Latin American practice group in Beijing, is highly regarded for his involvement in the drafting of the legal and contractual frameworks in the PFI/PPP sector. Ángel Pérez López in Barcelona has worked on some of the major financial deals that have taken place in Spain in recent years. He advises lenders and borrowers on transactions in the energy, biofuel, waste treatment and telecommunications sectors, and has also advised creditors and debtors on restructuring the debt of some of the most important companies in Spain. In the Lisbon office, Pedro Ferreira Malaquias concentrates on insurance law and his advice is often sought after on negotiating insurance contracts on project finance and structured finance transactions.
Lawyers at Uría Menéndez also impress with their knowledge of environmental law. Juan Antonio Loste provides “expert” guidance to clients on administrative procedures related to environmental permits, authorisations and concessions. Daniel Vázquez delivers “world-class” environmental advice to major national and international companies in sectors such as banking, energy, real estate, automotive, biotechnology, pharmacological and mining. Another “standout lawyer” is Carlos de Miguel, whose expertise in environmental law sees him advise some of Spain’s most high-profile companies. His knowledge also extends to energy and real estate law.
Real estate is a further area in which the firm excels and recent transactions include advising Goldman Sachs and Azora on their €205 million acquisition of 3,000 council houses. Ignacio Albiñana has “immense” experience in the design, launch, investment and functioning of real estate funds, as well as in acquisitions of real estate projects in much of Europe. He is joined by Fernando Azofra, who set up and ran the firm’s Lisbon office from 1998 to 2001. Azofra assisted in corporate and real estate deals involving an aggregate consideration of over €28 billion.
Uría Menéndez established the Professor Uría Foundation in 2005 and lawyers at the firm are encouraged to participate in the foundation’s humanitarian projects and pro bono work. In 2012, the firm’s lawyers recorded 1905 hours of pro bono work in 65 cases.
The firm is dedicated to strengthening its networks and alliances globally to provide the Iberian market with unrivalled expertise. Uría Menéndez prides itself on its “forward-thinking” approach and continues to adapt to changes in the business world to best meet its clients’ needs and expectations.
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Nominees have been selected based upon comprehensive, independent survey work with both general counsel and private practice lawyers worldwide. Only specialists who have met independent international research criteria are listed.