The project finance sector has seen an active year, with lawyers citing their geographical position as extremely useful for involvement in projects in Asia, Eastern Europe and Africa, all of which are seeing significant interest and investment. In this section we recognise 19 individuals who are greatly respected for their work in this field.
Three leading practitioners from Clifford Chance are singled out in this chapter. Anthony Giustini is considered a “dean of the project finance bar” in Paris and is internationally acclaimed for his financing work in the power, petrochemical, mining and infrastructure industries. The “brilliant” Nicholas Wong is renowned for his representation of sponsors and banks in projects around the world and stand outs for his “superb handling” of complex, high-profile projects. The “talented” Nikolaï Eatwell garners praise for his work involving projects in Africa and Eastern Europe, notably in the areas of mining, metals and telecommunications.
Allen & Overy fields two highly nominated individuals with Tim Scales garnering particularly high praise. He boasts “extensive experience” in the project finance sector and is considered a “major player” in the financing and development of projects in the Middle East and Africa, among other regions. Christine Poyer-Rufenacht is a “true specialist” when it comes to financing energy and infrastructure projects and is “highly valued” by clients for her flexible and thorough approach.
Two top lawyers from White & Case are listed. Paule Biensan is the head of the energy, infrastructure, project and asset finance, and privatisations group at the firm’s Paris office and is considered a “leading light” in this field of law. The “stellar” Victoria Westcott has developed an “impressive practice” advising on motorway and other infrastructure projects.
De Pardieu Brocas Maffei boasts two inclusions in this section with Antoine Maffei being celebrated as “one of the godfathers of project financing in France”. Clients “cannot say enough good things about him” and peers regularly see him on “high-profile” infrastructure financings. Jean-Renaud Cazali is considered a “key name” in project finance and banking with recent notable work including advising Caisse des Dépôts on the financing of PPPs and significant asset development programs.
Herbert Smith Freehills has two “outstanding” lawyers featured. Stéphane Brabant heads the firm’s energy and infrastructure practice in Paris, as well as the firm’s Africa practice. He boasts over 25 years’ experience as a projects lawyer focusing on the structuring of complex investments between multinationals and states in French-speaking Africa. Louis de Longeaux boasts a “tremendous track record” within the projects sector, and is hailed as a “financing genius”.
Two practitioners from Gide Loyrette Nouel are singled out. The “exceptionally good” John Crothers boasts nearly three decades of experience of involvement in large-scale projects, legal transition work, legislative drafting and assistance to governments, IFIs, lenders, sponsors and equity investors. François Krotoff plays a “pivotal role” in the firm’s projects practice and is lauded as an “Africa specialist” in this field.
Michael Foundethakis leads Baker & McKenzie’s global project finance group and is “globally revered” as a leader in this area. He is considered “one of the most technically gifted financing lawyers” in the country and clients value his “brilliant counsel”.
Bertrand Andriani at Linklaters has been focusing on project financing for over two decades and he has an “enviable client list” which includes advising on the high-speed rail PPPs in France, the Cameroon smelter projects and the Jorf Lasfar independent power project expansion.
JeantetAssociés fields the “wonderful” Thierry Lauriol to this section. He is hailed as a “superb strategic thinker” with “fantastic technical abilities” and clients value the “quality of service” he provides.
At Norton Rose Fulbright, Anne Lapierre heads the firm’s French energy practice and “stands out” for her “first class” work in energy-related projects.
Christophe Asselineau leads Shearman & Sterling’s Africa practice and its project development and finance group in Paris. He is praised for his “formidable understanding of doing business in Africa” and is described as “someone who always gets the job done to the highest standard”.
At Willkie Farr & Gallagher, Amir Jahanguiri is the “key name” for the financing of highly regulated projects and clients include host governments, regulators, sponsors, contractors and lenders.