We have acted, in the context of international arbitrations, for clients operating in various sectors, such as energy, mining, aeronautics, construction and telecommunications, handling in particular the following recent matters:
- Counsel to a French investor in an ICC arbitration against a North African State, on the basis of a bilateral investment treaty a, for breaches of a construction contract of 70 schoolsas well as of a settlement agreement concluded between the parties subsequently. Amount in dispute: 400 million US Dollars.
- Counsel to a mining company in an ICC arbitration relating to the wrongful termination of a contract concluded with an emanation of an African State, relating to the operation of an iron ore mine and the construction of a railway line and a mining port. The State – to whom the arbitration clause was extended – and its emanation were thus ordered to pay 130 million US Dollars to the mining company as damages for the loss of its opportunity to complete the project.
- Counsel to a German gas producer and its Greek subsidiary in an ICC arbitration brought by a Greek steel mill in a claim for revision of prices provided for in a supply agreement for the sale of industrial gases, as well as damages in tort for acts which allegedly damaged the claimant’s reputation. Amount in dispute: 200 million Dollars.
- Acting as counsel for a UAE company in an ICC arbitration against a Saudi Group in a dispute related to the wrongful termination of a joint venture agreement concluded between the parties in order to distribute in Africa the products of a major US manufacturer of consumer products. The amount in dispute: US$ 20 Million. .
- Counsel to the Qatari royal family in a CMAP arbitration relating to the termination of a contract for the renovation of a private residence in the South of France. Amount in dispute: 5 million Dollars.
- Counsel to a French bank in two ICC arbitrations, one against a Saudi company and the other against the director-guarantor of the company, relating to the termination of a loan agreement for the financing of the construction of a hospital in Saudi Arabia. Amount in dispute: 150 million Dollars.
- Counsel to an American manufacturer of cleaning products in a CPR arbitration relating to the allegedly wrongful termination of a distribution agreement concluded with a Moroccan distributor. Amount in dispute: 30 million Dollars.
- Counsel to a Middle Eastern construction company in an ICC arbitration relating to a sub-contract for the performance of MEP works in one of the largest shopping centres in the region. Amount in dispute: 14 million Dollars.
- Counsel to an Italian company in the defence industry in an ICC arbitration brought by a Middle Eastern State following an alleged breach of a weapons supply contract , and then advised that company in the action to set aside the arbitral award rendered in its favour.. Amount in dispute: 600 million Dollars.
- Counsel to a chain of restaurants in an ICC arbitration against a UAE franchisee. Amount in dispute: 6 million Dollars.
- Counsel to a regional audiovisual production company in a DIAC arbitration against a company, relating to contracts for the marketing of television series. Amount in dispute: 10 million Dollars.
- Counsel to a Spanish telecommunications equipment company in an ICC arbitration against a West African State relating to the wrongful termination of a contract for the supply and installation of computing equipment. Amount in dispute: 30 million Dollars.
PROCEEDINGS FOR THE ANNULMENT AND EXEQUATUR OF ARBITRAL AWARDS
We act in a very large number of proceedings related to the annulment and enforcement of arbitral awards as well as for the enforcement foreign judicial decisions, including seizure of assets before the French courts. Most of the proceedings in which we have acted have given rise to notable ruling which have set precedent:
- Annulment proceedings on behalf of a German gas producer before the Paris Court of Appeal against an ICC award relating to the alleged breach of European competition law.
- Counsel to a company in the energy sector in annulment proceedings before the Paris Court of Appeal against an ICC award relating to the alleged breach of the principle of “concentration of legal grounds” and the res judicata effect of a previous arbitral award.
- Counsel to an internationally renowned French bank in the enforcement in Saudi Arabia of two ICC awards rendered in Paris in its favour.
- Annulment proceedings on behalf of a renowned Lebanese group against five partial awards rendered against a Central African State for non-payment of works for the construction of roads and war damages suffered by the group’s African subsidiary, for breach of the arbitrators’ duty of independence and impartiality and breach of due process.
- Defence of an Egyptian company in the energy sector in annulment proceedings brought by an Egyptian public body against an arbitral award for alleged breach of due process due to the inadmissibility of procedural objections raised by the arbitrators of their own motion.
- Counsel to a European telecommunications company in an appeal against an order allowing the enforcement of an ad hoc (UNCITRAL) arbitral award for breach of the principle of impartiality, of due process and of the principle of proportionality.
LITIGATION / PRE-ARBITRAL ADVICE
We also provide advice prior to any arbitral or judicial proceedings in order to determine, while taking account of the particular needs of our clients, procedural strategy and the implementation of provisional measures:
- Counsel to a European satellite operator in proceedings brought against it by another satellite operator before the Paris Commercial Court in breach of an ICC arbitration clause, in relation to an alleged breach of a satellite frequency coordination agreement.
- Counsel to a leading oil company in the pre-arbitral phase of an ICSID arbitration against a North African country on the basis of a bilateral investment treaty and in an ICC arbitration against a local publicly‑owned company in relation to the possible withdrawal of the oil company from a joint venture due to a refusal by the government to grant legislative exemptions.
- Counsel to a European airline in the pre-arbitral phase of an ICSID arbitration on the basis of a bilateral investment treaty against a Latin American state that had blocked the free transfer of the investor’s assets.
- Advice relating to the drafting of arbitration clauses in the context of complex contractual operations for the implementation of international projects, including by way of example, a partnership concluded between a French company in the nuclear energy sector and a Middle Eastern State for the implementation of a civil nuclear program in that country.
- Counsel to a leading European airline in a criminal enquiry begun by the US federal prosecutor for anti‑competitive practices by several companies in that sector relating to the prices for cargo.
Finally, we also provide expert advice in cross-border commercial litigation and any litigation involving aspects of private international law:
- Counsel to groups from various industrial sectors in disputes relating to unlawful termination of established business relations and other unfair competition practices.
- Counsel to an internationally renowned American bank in monitoring an action for the annulment of a settlement agreement which transferred the majority of the shares in a maritime transport company before the court of first instance of Beirut.
- Counsel to a European real estate company before the court of first instance of Nanterre following the off-plan purchase of a building constructed illegally in the area of La Défense.
- Counsel to a Taiwanese airline company on air transport law before the commercial court of Bobigny.
- Counsel to a family whose assets (a building and factories) were despoiled by successive totalitarian regimes of the Czech Republic, in a family dispute before the French courts relating to the division of said assets, including in particular the complex question of the jurisdiction of the French courts and the law applicable to this dispute.
- Counsel to the spouse of a Lebanese businessman in a contentious international probate matter, opposing her, her adopted daughter and a natural child.
Jacques Pellerin has, since 1994, been regularly appointed as arbitrator Very often, due to his expertise in arbitration procedure , he is appointed to chair the arbitral tribunal in ad hoc arbitrations. The disputes he has adjudicated principally relate to company law, and more particularly, transfers of shares and liability guarantees, distribution law and questions of property relating to private individuals.
Marianne Kecsmar regularly sits as arbitrator in international ad hoc and institutional arbitrations conducted in English and French and subject to a wide range of applicable laws, notably from the African and Eastern and Central European countries. The arbitral disputes she had adjudicated principally relate to the energy, telecommunications and construction sectors, involving contractual, corporate and project finance law issues.
Bassam Mirza regularly sits as arbitrator in ad hoc and international institutional arbitrations (including ICC) conducted in Arabic, English and French and subject to wide range of applicable laws notably from the Arab and African countries of civil law tradition. The disputes he has adjudicated principally relates to construction/real estate law, law of obligation and contracts, companies law and joint-ventures.