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Thought Leaders

Thought Leaders

Erik van Duijvenvoorde

Erik van Duijvenvoorde

Accuracy16, avenue MatignonParisFrance75008

Thought Leader

Thought Leaders - Arbitration Expert Witnesses 2020

Q&A

WWL Ranking: Thought Leader

WWL says

Erik van Duijvenvoorde is praised by clients as “highly knowledgeable” and is credited with the ability to provide expert testimony in a “concise and straightforward way on the most complex quantum matters”.

Questions & Answers

Erik van Duijvenvoorde specialises in the expert assessment and quantification of damages in both investor-state and commercial arbitrations. He has testified on numerous occasions, including before tribunals constituted under ICSID, UNCITRAL, ICC, NAI and DIFC-LCIA rules, as well as before the New York Bankruptcy Court and the DIFC courts. Erik has dealt with dispute situations in a broad range of industries, including energy, mining, construction, manufacturing, retail and distribution.

Describe your career to date.

I have assisted clients on business, economic, accounting and valuation issues for over 30 years. Based in both London and Paris, my career has encompassed the audit of high-growth businesses, corporate recovery and M&A transactions at a Big Four accounting firm. I followed this with a spell as a partner at a global private equity fund where I headed the European teams in charge of financial reviews, valuations and portfolio monitoring. As a partner at Accuracy, I have spent the past 10 years building the firm’s global advisory practice in London and increasing its cross-border capability to serve clients in international arbitration.

What has been the most rewarding part of practising in such an international discipline? 

Born in Kenya, I have always had a special affinity for Africa, and working in international professional services has certainly allowed me to travel widely and experience different cultures. I once visited Senegal, Burkina Faso and the Ivory Coast in the space of a week, all on my client’s private jet.

How has your previous professional experience helped you in your current role?

My previous professional experience has helped me in my current role in many ways. Perhaps the best example is my previous experience of having directly advised clients seeking to divest, acquire or finance business interests in the context of external growth strategies, joint ventures, management and leveraged buy-outs or minority shareholdings. This “real life” experience allows me to bring more insightful and helpful expert testimony on both contentious valuations and post-M&A disputes.

Your practice spans a range of industry sectors. To what extent is sector-specific knowledge on the part of the expert important when testifying in commercial disputes? 

Industry experience is often a differentiating factor that parties take into account when selecting experts. It is essential that the damages expert is able to understand and challenge the findings of technical industry experts before then correctly reflecting underlying assumptions in any assessment of damages. Teaming up with other experts is common in certain sectors, whether internally within the same firm, or with external specialists. At Accuracy, our experts frequently team up on disputes involving capital-intensive construction and infrastructure projects, market sizing and competitive positioning, and regulated markets such as renewable energy.  

Do you have any tips for counsel on how to get the best out of expert teams? 

My tip for counsel would be to avoid treating your damages expert as a calculating machine to which information is drip-fed. I strongly believe the closer the working relationship between counsel and the experts, the better.

What suggestions do you have for tribunals faced with large differences in quantum figures proposed by opposing experts?

In my experience, opposing experts often propose widely differing figures. In these cases, I would like to see tribunals being more directive, both during and after hearings. Expert conferencing, joint statements setting out the areas of agreement and disagreement between the experts and, in the right circumstances, flexible damages models are all positive developments, but they often meet with limited success despite the good intentions. Subsequent joint instructions would be beneficial to taking arguments to a conclusion even if this results in a longer process, and further submissions.

What steps can younger experts take to improve their chances of getting testifying appointments? Is there an important role to play here for experienced practitioners? 

The single thing they can do is join an enlightened and progressive firm. Accuracy invests heavily in developing its people and providing a dynamic working environment. We actively seek opportunities for younger experts to testify and, where the context allows, encourage them to do so alongside more experienced colleagues. 

What makes Accuracy stand out from its competitors in the market?

In the words of one of my clients: “The need for an excellent expert goes without saying, but what differentiates Accuracy from the rest is the quality of your teams.”

What has been your most rewarding achievement to date?

I once had the opportunity to sell a 30-year-old Boeing 737 on behalf of an African airline in administration for a net sum of $3 million, and I was onboard for its test of airworthiness. It was certainly rewarding to be back on the ground.

Global Leader

WWL Ranking: Recommended

WWL says

Erik van Duijvenvoorde is highlighted by commentators for his “great energy and creativity”. He has over 25 years’ international experience in the assessment and quantification of damages.

Biography

Erik van Duijvenvoorde is a partner in Accuracy’s forensics, litigation and arbitration practice and is based in Paris and London. He has advised clients on business, economic, accounting and valuation issues for more than 25 years and specialises in the expert assessment and quantification of complex damages.

Erik has been engaged as an expert in the English High Court, in international arbitration cases, and likewise on large forensic accounting and fraud investigations. He has testified on numerous occasions, including before ICSID, UNCITRAL investment treaty and ICC, NAI, LCIA commercial arbitration tribunals, as well as before the New York Bankruptcy Court and the Courts of the DIFC.

Erik has worked on projects in a broad range of industry sectors from energy, mining and infrastructure, to manufacturing, TMT and retail. He acts as expert in a wide variety of dispute situations, including in relation to commercial and joint venture agreements, construction claims, expropriation, market eviction, intellectual property, restructuring, and mergers and acquisitions.

Erik’s previous experience working in a deal environment for a private equity fund investing in pan-European equity, mezzanine and senior debt investments, as well as in the transaction services department of PwC, makes him particularly well placed to act as an expert in investor and shareholder-related disputes.

Erik qualified as an accountant in England and is a fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants. He has lived and worked in both France and the United Kingdom and has successfully led cross-border client engagements in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and North America. His mother tongue is English and he also speaks fluent French.

London address:
6 Bevis Marks
London
EC3A 7BA
Tel: +44 203 861 4650
Mob: +44 7557 278 232

WWL Ranking: Recommended
Mining Experts 2021

Professional Biography

WWL Ranking: Recommended

WWL says

Erik van Duijvenvoorde performs exceedingly well in our research thanks to his remarkable consulting expertise and experience across a multitude of mining matters.

Biography

Erik van Duijvenvoorde is a Partner in Accuracy’s Forensics, Litigation & Arbitration practice and is based in Paris and London. He has advised clients on business, economic, accounting and valuation issues for more than 25 years and specialises in the expert assessment and quantification of complex damages.

Erik has been engaged as an expert in the English High Court, in international arbitration cases, and likewise on large forensic accounting and fraud investigations. He has testified on numerous occasions, including before ICSID, UNCITRAL investment treaty and ICC, NAI, LCIA commercial arbitration tribunals, as well as before the New York Bankruptcy Court and the Courts of the DIFC.

Erik has worked on projects in a broad range of industry sectors including mining where he has collaborated with technical mining and mine financing experts to assess damages in arbitration cases. Such situations have included the failure to grant licenses and permits, as well as operating and financing approvals, in addition to expropriation, contractual and joint venture disputes.

Erik’s previous experience working in a deal environment for a private equity fund investing equity and debt investments, as well as in the Transaction Services department of PwC, makes him particularly well placed to act as an expert in investor and shareholder-related cases.

Erik qualified as an accountant in England and is a Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants. He has lived and worked in both France and the United Kingdom and has successfully led cross-border client engagements in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and North America. His mother tongue is English and he also speaks fluent French.

National Leader

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