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GAR 100 - 4th Edition

Walder Wyss & Partners

21 February 2011

Walder Wyss’ arbitration group began to gather momentum with the arrival of Philipp Habegger in 1996.

People in Who’s Who:
2
Pending cases as counsel:
28
Value of pending counsel work:
US$1 billion
Treaty cases:
0
Current arbitrator appointments:
29 (of which 11 are as sole or chair)
No. of lawyers sitting as arbitrator:
3

Before then, the firm’s work had been limited to construction arbitration under the care of Daniel Wyss. Habegger, who can say he first sat as an arbitrator aged 32, is today one of the best-known figure in Switzerland’s younger arbitration generation. The practice absorbed a substantial unit from Pestalozzi Lachenal & Patry in late 2006 – including Peter Straub and Marc Veit – and is today one of the more substantial arbitration practices in the Swiss market. In a GAR survey on Switzerland from 2008, the reporter picked it as “the other firm to watch” (with Homburger). The firm has offices in Berne and Zurich but is regarded by some competitors as German-speaking.

Away from the practice, Habegger teaches international arbitration at the University of Zurich and lectures at the Swiss Arbitration Academy. In 2009 he became Switzerland’s alternate member of the ICC Court. He has also been appointed to the committee tasked with revising the Swiss Rules.

Big wins

Marc Veit and Peter Straub helped Motorola win nearly US$2 billion against a Turkish telecoms firm – a story that featured on the front cover of Time magazine. (The award is not thought to have been paid.)

Habegger achieved a full win for Austrian company Red Bull GmbH in a dispute over distribution in the Middle East. The case turned on aspects of US Anti-Boycott legislation.

In the past, Walder Wyss has been counsel to an investor with a problem in Georgia, a well-known construction consortium, and various clients facing issues on projects in the Middle East, especially in Egypt and Lebanon.

Recent events

In Zurich, the practice broadened its international experience with the addition of German Anna von Mühlendahl from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Alex Gordon from an international firm in New York. Micha Bühler was promoted to counsel. The firm also said it successful challenged an ICC award before the Swiss courts but supplied no further details.

Who’s Who nominee:

  • Marc D Veit

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