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GAR 100 - 4th Edition

Bredin Prat

18 February 2011

This Parisian firm is already top-ranked for M&A and general dispute resolution is gaining a reputation for international commercial and investment treaty arbitration.

Its core arbitration team – partners Tim Portwood, Louis Christophe Delanoy and Raëd Fathallah – have now achieved three consecutive victories at ICSID on behalf of Egypt, in claims brought by a US textile company, two cotton investors and a pair of Belgian dredging companies.

In the commercial arbitration sphere it recently secured a substantial win on behalf of Algeria’s state oil company Sonatrach against Spain’s Gas Natural, represented by Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, in a pricing dispute. The ICC award ordered the Spanish company to pay Sonatrach over US$2 billion it had withheld, pending renegotiation of a pricing clause.

As revealed by GAR, Bredin Prat has also been instructed by the Democratic Republic of the Congo to defend it in high-profile ICC and ICSID arbitration claims brought by Canadian mining company First Quantum Minerals. A member of the firm’s team is also partnering with Mayer Brown in Paris to fight a US businessman’s multimillion dollar ICSID claim against Romania.

The team can offer a blend of common law and civil experience – Tim Portwood is one of the few senior Parisian lawyers to have begun his career at the English bar. It also includes lawyers with Spanish and Italian backgrounds. Meanwhile newly appointed partner Raëd Fathallah speaks fluent Arabic and has extensive connections in the Middle East and the Gulf. The 37-year-old Lebanese Canadian practitioner, who studied in Ottawa, New York and Oxford, has been sitting regularly as an arbitrator under ICC and LCIA rules.

Bredin Prat secured an lateral associate hire from blue-chip Parisian firm Darrois Villey Maillot Brochier – Andrea Pinna – in 2009. Another member of the team, Spanish practitioner Carmen Núñez-Lagos, is a member of the ICC task force considering how to improve arbitration involving states or state entities.

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