Ferrere

2013, Chambers Latin America

BANKING AND FINANCE

THE FIRM This full-service firm fields an 18-strong banking and finance team with a particular focus on capital markets work. The team has broad experience in handling complex securitizations and bond deals, and is active in project finance. In a recent highlight, the firm counseled an Inter-American Development Bank-led banking syndicate as it provided project finance loans and credit facilities to the Montes del Plata pulp mill. The team also advised the Central Bank of Uruguay as it revamped the country's regulatory framework.

Sources say: "A down-to-earth and hard-working group of lawyers who focus on providing clients with the best possible service."

KEY INDIVIDUALS Department head Diego Rodríguez earns praise for his deep knowledge of local finance and for being "conscious of risk but bold and business-oriented in his advice. " He led on the Montes del Plata project financing. Associate Julie Rothschild is described as "calm and collected, comfortable in handling complex matters and a pleasure to work with.

Band 1: Diego Rodríguez

Associate to watch: Julie Rothschild


CORPORATE/M&A

THE FIRM This full-service powerhouse has a 37-lawyer corporate team with broad-ranging expertise. The team routinely handles cross-border transactions and projects in sectors such as insurance, energy, IT, pharmaceuticals and real estate. In a recent highlight the team advised Abengoa Group on bidding for the concession to build an energy plant at Punta del Tigre, and assisted DeLaval in establishing operations in Uruguay. Other clients include Vale, Microsoft and Telefónica.

Sources say: "Answers are immediate and commitment is outstanding – the firm treats our problems as its own and carefully reviews every detail and issue. "

KEY INDIVIDUALS Corporate department head Martín Cerruti is a well-regarded M&A expert with a particular focus on complex international transactions, especially those involving Brazil.

Gonzalo Secco draws client praise for his "great attitude, intelligence and perspicacity. "

Senior associate Pamela Moreira is championed by clients for her great dedication: "She's obsessive about delivering the best possible service. "

Senior associate Geraldine Ifran wins market praise for her "proactivity, availability and can-do attitude. "

Senior associate Santiago Fontana earns acclaim for being "highly efficient, clear in his approach and great at client communications. "

Band 2: Gonzalo Secco

Band 3: Martín Cerruti

Associates to watch: Geraldine Ifrán, Santiago Fontana, Pamela Moreira


DISPUTE RESOLUTION

THE FIRM This 27-lawyer dispute resolution department makes its way to the top tier based on outstanding client feedback and an impressive caseload. Clients praise the team's attitude and commitment, as well as its success rate. The team tackles commercial, constitutional and administrative litigation, and has been handling a number of complex international arbitration cases relating to Uruguay's 2002 banking crisis. In this regard a recent highlight was representing JPMorgan Chase, Chemical Overseas Holdings, Credit Suisse, Dresdner Lateinamerika and several former directors of Banco Comercial in a dispute settlement with the Uruguayan government.

Sources say: "The key to the relationship is the ease with which the firm understands our company needs and acts accordingly, in pragmatic and convincing fashion. "

KEY INDIVIDUALS Department head Sandra González is praised for her considered approach: "She's very open and objective, and bold with it. "

Andrés Cerisola earns acclaim for being "very well prepared, strategic and aware of the political environment. "

Alejandro Andrés Pintos is championed by clients for his "superb analytical abilities and great knowledge of our company and the regulations governing our industry. "

Band 1: Sandra González

Band 2: Andrés Cerisola and Alejandro Pintos


INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY

THE FIRM The 11-lawyer IP team at this full-service firm provides trade mark, patent and copyright registration advice to a premier list of local and international clients. In recent highlights, the team assisted Rubrica in a software infringement case and advised Nanokem on obtaining its operating licence from the Uruguayan Ministry of Health. The firm has traditionally been championed for its full-service capacity but has been less dominant in terms of trade mark registration, to which end the firm boosted its firepower via the 2011 incorporation of IP boutique Mónica Bacot & Asociados.

Sources say: "Excellent service in terms of quality, speed and regular follow-up on issues. "

KEY INDIVIDUALS Agustín Mayer West chairs the department and earns particular praise for the depth of his entertainment industry knowledge.

Senior associate Alejandro Alterwain is praised for his "impeccable work product and great agility. "

Band 1: Agustín Mayer

Associate to watch: Alejandro Alterwain


LABOUR AND EMPLOYMENT

THE FIRM This 11-lawyer team provides comprehensive labour litigation coverage alongside an advisory service that spans social security issues, restructuring, collective bargaining, and union and government relations. The team recently represented Scotiabank in union negotiations following its acquisition of Nuevo Banco Comercial and Pronto! The firm also assisted the International Labour Organization in conducting an analysis of Uruguayan legislation on the right to strike.

Sources say: "A highly effective and timely service that's able to draw on the expertise of other departments as and when required. "

KEY INDIVIDUALS Senior counsel Nelson Larrañaga is hailed as one of the most experienced collective bargaining lawyers in the business. "He delivers very complete written reports but is also great at translating legal speak for non-lawyers, " say clients.

Senior associate Lourdes Denis is described as a "very responsible and well-rounded lawyer. "

Verónica Raffo heads the labour department and is highly respected in the market. "She's very experienced and pragmatic, " say sources, adding that she is "quick to respond yet deep in her answers. "

Band 1: Verónica Raffo and Nelson Larrañaga

Band 2: Lourdes Denis


REAL ESTATE

THE FIRM This full-service firm handles a broad workload spanning real estate, tourism, agribusiness and forestry. The department comprises 17 staff, including lawyers and notaries, spread among a network of five Uruguayan offices. Clients also benefit from the firm having branches in Bolivia and Paraguay. The team advised the investors behind the Diamantis Plaza Lofts & Towers residential development, and assisted transfer and storage terminal operator Corporación Navios as it bought plots of land in the Nueva Palmira region.

Sources say: "High technical standards, good working relationships with the government agencies, and agile, fluid and personalised communication with clients. "

KEY INDIVIDUALS Senior associate Carlos Falco was heavily involved in the Diamantis and Navios deals, and draws client praise for his "exceptional service and negotiating skills. "

Associates to watch: Carlos Falco


TAX

THE FIRM The tax team at this full-service firm has a strong reputation for advising clients on sophisticated tax structures, large and complex cross-border deals and high-profile litigation. The seven-lawyer team recently advised JPMorgan Chase, Dresdner Lateinamerika and Credit Suisse in a dispute with the Uruguayan tax authorities dating back to the country's 2002 banking crisis. The firm also provided tax assistance to AIG and Metlife regarding the merger of their local affiliates.

Sources say: "Great speed, thorough answers and a level of commitment that makes it feel like the lawyers are on your staff. "

KEY INDIVIDUALS Alberto Varela Rellán heads the tax department and wins client praise for his "clear answers, deep knowledge of all the topics and total availability, be it for consultation or appearing before the authorities. "

Gianni Gutiérrez Prieto earns acclaim for "offering the sort of high-quality, reliable and personable service that's typical of the firm. "

Isabel Laventure has a particular focus on tax litigation. "She provides fluid communications and effective solutions, " say sources.

Band 1: Alberto Varela

Associates to watch: Gianni Gutiérrez and Isabel Laventure

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