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Thought Leaders

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Thought Leader

Thought Leaders - Arbitration 2020

Q&A

WWL Ranking: Thought Leader

WWL says

Pierre-Yves Gunter is held in high regard by peers who note he sits among the most prominent arbitration specialists in the Swiss market.

Questions & Answers

Pierre-Yves Gunter has been active in international commercial arbitration since 1991. He has acted as counsel and arbitrator in over 220 cases. After 19 years with Python (formerly Python & Peter), he joined Bär & Karrer in January 2017 as partner and co-head of the international arbitration group, which consists of 40 lawyers.

What did you find most challenging about starting your career in law?

Finding the right balance between my private and professional life, and taking some distance from the files so as not to be too affected by the stress.

You have been involved in arbitration proceedings across Europe, the Middle East and Africa in the past couple of years. How do you prepare for complex international disputes?

As with every arbitration, you need to have an excellent knowledge of the file; but in addition, you need to spend the necessary time to understand complex technical and financial issues. 

What has been the most memorable arbitration you have been part of?

A fashion arbitration case involving a distribution agreement, where one of the world’s most famous fashion designers appeared in person and, at the beginning of his examination, introduced himself as “the God of fashion”.

How would you assess the globalisation of the legal market, and in particular of arbitration proceedings?

There are several positive effects; for instance, the importance of the legal and cultural differences is reduced through standardisation, use of soft law, etc. There are less surprises. However, sometimes certain counsel underestimate the importance and relevance of the applicable law. 

Since you began your career, what has been the biggest change you have seen in relation to the way that arbitration proceedings are conducted?

Everything became much more formal. My mentor Professor Pierre Lalive anticipated the risk that arbitration may become overregulated. One shall, however, bear in mind that arbitration is no longer practised by a small club of distinguished university professors and has become much more globalised, which explains the need for more regulations, soft law, etc.

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

They need to be known by the arbitration practitioners and institutions, and to develop their network. Experienced arbitration lawyers and arbitrators can guide them.

What do you think will be the greatest challenge facing the next generation of arbitration practitioners?

The number of lawyers interested in practising in arbitration is enormous, but the number of cases, in my view, is not growing at the same speed. My recommendation to young lawyers is to practise arbitration and litigation.

You have enjoyed a very distinguished career so far. What would you like to achieve that you have not yet accomplished?

I gained a lot of experience in Europe, the USA and the Middle East. I would like to increase my experience in Asia, Eastern Europe and Latin America.

WWL says

Pierre-Yves Gunter is celebrated for, among other things, his “expertise in construction and Middle East matters” and his “tremendous experience as an arbitrator”, as well as his “hands-on approach”.

Questions & Answers

Pierre-Yves Gunter has been active in international commercial arbitration since 1991. He has acted as counsel and arbitrator in over 220 cases. After 19 years with Python (formerly Python & Peter), he joined Bär & Karrer in January 2017 as partner and co-head of the international arbitration group, which consists of 40 lawyers. 

What did you find most challenging about starting your career in law?

Finding the right balance between my private and professional life, and taking some distance from the files so as not to be too affected by the stress.

You have been involved in arbitration proceedings across Europe, the Middle East and Africa in the past couple of years. How do you prepare for complex international disputes?

As with every arbitration, you need to have an excellent knowledge of the file; but in addition, you need to spend the necessary time to understand complex technical and financial issues. 

What has been the most memorable arbitration you have been part of?

A fashion arbitration case involving a distribution agreement, where one of the world’s most famous fashion designers appeared in person and, at the beginning of his examination, introduced himself as “the God of fashion”.

How would you assess the globalisation of the legal market, and in particular of arbitration proceedings?

There are several positive effects; for instance, the importance of the legal and cultural differences is reduced through standardisation, use of soft law, etc. There are less surprises. However, sometimes certain counsel underestimate the importance and relevance of the applicable law. 

Since you began your career, what has been the biggest change you have seen in relation to the way that arbitration proceedings are conducted?

Everything became much more formal. My mentor Professor Pierre Lalive anticipated the risk that arbitration may become overregulated. One shall, however, bear in mind that arbitration is no longer practised by a small club of distinguished university professors and has become much more globalised, which explains the need for more regulations, soft law, etc.

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

They need to be known by the arbitration practitioners and institutions, and to develop their network. Experienced arbitration lawyers and arbitrators can guide them.

What do you think will be the greatest challenge facing the next generation of arbitration practitioners?

The number of lawyers interested in practising in arbitration is enormous, but the number of cases, in my view, is not growing at the same speed. My recommendation to young lawyers is to practise arbitration and litigation.

You have enjoyed a very distinguished career so far. What would you like to achieve that you have not yet accomplished?

I gained a lot of experience in Europe, the USA and the Middle East. I would like to increase my experience in Asia, Eastern Europe and Latin America.

Global Leader

Arbitration 2020

Professional Biography

WWL Ranking: Recommended

WWL says

Pierre-Yves Gunter is held in high regard by peers who note he sits among the most prominent arbitration specialists in the Swiss market.

Biography

Pierre-Yves Gunter is a partner and co-heads the international arbitration practice at Bär & Karrer.

He has been acting since 1991 in the field of international commercial arbitration.

Pierre-Yves has acted as counsel and arbitrator (chairman, sole arbitrator and party-appointed arbitrator) in Switzerland and abroad in arbitration proceedings, both ad hoc (including UNCITRAL) and administered (ie, ICC, Swiss Rules, LCIA, ICDR, WIPO, FOSFA, Vienna International Arbitral Centre, Stockholm Chamber of Commerce).

Pierre-Yves Gunter is experienced in several industries, in particular disputes relating to the field of sport and entertainment, agency, sales, distribution, joint-venture, construction and complex projects, oil and gas, telecommunications and IT, intellectual property, pharmaceutical, real estate, hotel management, commodity and international trade, and corporate/post-M&A.

Pierre-Yves Gunter also frequently represents parties in arbitration matters before the Swiss Supreme Court (appeals filed against arbitration awards) and before other Swiss courts.

He previously served as a co-chair of the international arbitration committee of the American Bar Association (section of international law and practice) and is a former board member of the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC), where he also was part of the rules revision committee.

Pierre-Yves Gunter graduated in 1987 from the Law School of Neuchâtel University (summa cum laude) and holds an LLM from Harvard Law School. He has written various articles on international arbitration and frequently appears as speaker at conferences on arbitration. He is fluent in English and French and has a good command of German.

Bär & Karrer is a renowned Swiss law firm with more than 170 lawyers in Zurich, Geneva, Lugano and Zug. Its core business is advising clients on innovative and complex transactions and representing them in litigation, arbitration and regulatory proceedings. The firm's clients range from multinational corporations to private individuals in Switzerland and around the world.

Bär & Karrer has been repeatedly awarded Switzerland's "Law Firm of the Year" by the most prestigious international legal ranking agencies.

Entertainment 2020

Professional Biography

WWL Ranking: Recommended

WWL says

Pierre-Yves Gunter is "one of the best" in the market as a result of his wealth of experience in handling complex sports and media arbitration proceedings. 

Biography

Pierre-Yves Gunter is a partner and co-heads the international arbitration practice at Bär & Karrer. He has been acting since 1991 in the field of international commercial arbitration.

Pierre-Yves has acted as counsel and arbitrator (chairman, sole arbitrator and party-appointed arbitrator) in Switzerland and abroad in arbitration proceedings, both ad hoc (including UNCITRAL) and administered (ie, ICC, Swiss Rules, LCIA, ICDR, WIPO, FOSFA, Vienna International Arbitral Centre, Stockholm Chamber of Commerce).

Pierre-Yves Gunter is experienced in several industries, in particular disputes relating to the field of sport and entertainment, agency, sales, distribution, joint-venture, construction and complex projects, oil and gas, telecommunications and IT, intellectual property, pharmaceutical, real estate, hotel management, commodity and international trade, and corporate/post-M&A.

Pierre-Yves Gunter also frequently represents parties in arbitration matters before the Swiss Supreme Court (appeals filed against arbitration awards) and before other Swiss courts

He previously served as a co-chair of the international arbitration committee of the American Bar Association (section of international law and practice) and is a former board member of the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC), where he also was part of the rules revision committee.

Pierre-Yves Gunter graduated in 1987 from the Law School of Neuchâtel University (summa cum laude) and holds an LLM from Harvard Law School. He has written various articles on international arbitration and frequently appears as speaker at conferences on arbitration. He is fluent in English and French and has a good command of German.

Bär & Karrer is a renowned Swiss law firm with more than 170 lawyers in Zurich, Geneva, Lugano and Zug. Its core business is advising clients on innovative and complex transactions and representing them in litigation, arbitration and regulatory proceedings. The firm's clients range from multinational corporations to private individuals in Switzerland and around the world.

Bär & Karrer has been repeatedly awarded Switzerland's "Law Firm of the Year" by the most prestigious international legal ranking agencies.

National Leader

Switzerland - Arbitration 2020

Professional Biography

WWL Ranking: Recommended

WWL says

Pierre-Yves Gunter is celebrated for, among other things, his “expertise in construction and Middle East matters” and his “tremendous experience as an arbitrator”, as well as his “hands-on approach”.

Biography

Pierre-Yves Gunter is a partner and co-heads the international arbitration practice at Bär & Karrer.

He has been acting since 1991 in the field of international commercial arbitration.

Pierre-Yves has acted as counsel and arbitrator (chairman, sole arbitrator and party-appointed arbitrator) in Switzerland and abroad in arbitration proceedings, both ad hoc (including UNCITRAL) and administered (ie, ICC, Swiss Rules, LCIA, ICDR, WIPO, FOSFA, Vienna International Arbitral Centre, Stockholm Chamber of Commerce).

Pierre-Yves Gunter is experienced in several industries, in particular disputes relating to the field of sport and entertainment, agency, sales, distribution, joint-venture, construction and complex projects, oil and gas, telecommunications and IT, intellectual property, pharmaceutical, real estate, hotel management, commodity and international trade, and corporate/post-M&A.

Pierre-Yves Gunter also frequently represents parties in arbitration matters before the Swiss Supreme Court (appeals filed against arbitration awards) and before other Swiss courts.

He previously served as a co-chair of the international arbitration committee of the American Bar Association (section of international law and practice) and is a former board member of the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC), where he also was part of the rules revision committee.

Pierre-Yves Gunter graduated in 1987 from the Law School of Neuchâtel University (summa cum laude) and holds an LLM from Harvard Law School. He has written various articles on international arbitration and frequently appears as speaker at conferences on arbitration. He is fluent in English and French and has a good command of German.

Bär & Karrer is a renowned Swiss law firm with more than 170 lawyers in Zurich, Geneva, Lugano and Zug. Its core business is advising clients on innovative and complex transactions and representing them in litigation, arbitration and regulatory proceedings. The firm's clients range from multinational corporations to private individuals in Switzerland and around the world.

Bär & Karrer has been repeatedly awarded Switzerland's "Law Firm of the Year" by the most prestigious international legal ranking agencies.

WWL Ranking: Recommended

WWL says

Pierre-Yves Gunter is distinguished for his impressive and long-standing sports arbitration practice.

Biography

Pierre-Yves Gunter is a partner and co-heads the international arbitration practice at Bär & Karrer.

He has been acting since 1991 in the field of international commercial arbitration.

Pierre-Yves has acted as counsel and arbitrator (chairman, sole arbitrator and party-appointed arbitrator) in Switzerland and abroad in arbitration proceedings, both ad hoc (including UNCITRAL) and administered (ie, ICC, Swiss Rules, LCIA, ICDR, WIPO, FOSFA, Vienna International Arbitral Centre, Stockholm Chamber of Commerce).

Pierre-Yves Gunter is experienced in several industries, in particular disputes relating to the field of sport and entertainment, agency, sales, distribution, joint-venture, construction and complex projects, oil and gas, telecommunications and IT, intellectual property, pharmaceutical, real estate, hotel management, commodity and international trade, and corporate/post-M&A.

Pierre-Yves Gunter also frequently represents parties in arbitration matters before the Swiss Supreme Court (appeals filed against arbitration awards) and before other Swiss courts.

He previously served as a co-chair of the international arbitration committee of the American Bar Association (section of international law and practice) and is a former board member of the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC), where he also was part of the rules revision committee.

Pierre-Yves Gunter graduated in 1987 from the Law School of Neuchâtel University (summa cum laude) and holds an LLM from Harvard Law School. He has written various articles on international arbitration and frequently appears as speaker at conferences on arbitration. He is fluent in English and French and has a good command of German.

Bär & Karrer is a renowned Swiss law firm with more than 170 lawyers in Zurich, Geneva, Lugano and Zug. Its core business is advising clients on innovative and complex transactions and representing them in litigation, arbitration and regulatory proceedings. The firm's clients range from multinational corporations to private individuals in Switzerland and around the world.

Bär & Karrer has been repeatedly awarded Switzerland's "Law Firm of the Year" by the most prestigious international legal ranking agencies.

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