The US firm has bulked up in New York and received a new instruction at ICSID
- People in Who’s Who:
Hughes Hubbard & Reed was founded in 1888 by a former chief justice of the US. Although like many of its US peers it can at times seem a bit of a domestic litigation shop, it stands out from that crowd by its early embrace of international arbitration.
The practice was started by Paris partner Axel Baum nearly 40 years ago. Under Baum’s tutelage, lawyers in Europe and the US have had the time and space to develop true credentials in the field and they are now recognised figures in their own right, who sit as arbitrators in addition to their counsel work.
The arbitration practice is now co-chaired by José Rosell in Paris and John Townsend in Washington, DC, who boast a wide array of international appointments as arbitrators. President George W Bush chose Townsend to be a US member of the ICSID panel of arbitrators in 2008.
Other key names at the firm include partners John Fellas, Chris Paparella and Steven Hammond in New York, William Bisset in Los Angeles and Dutch national Alfred Hoogveld in Paris, who joined Hughes Hubbard & Reed from Loyens & Loeff just over a year ago.
Fellas – who is on GAR’s editorial board – was nominated to the board of directors at the American Arbitration Association in 2010.
Who uses it?
Current clients include the Turkish national oil and gas company TPAO, which the firm has in the past represented in ICC arbitration with an engineering company arising out of the construction of a natural gas pipeline.
In February 2011, Hughes Hubbard & Reed promoted Hagit Elul to the partnership, and hired partner Joanne Osendarp and counsel John Ryan from Weil Gotshal & Manges.
Osendarp, who was co-chair of Weil Gotshal & Manges’ international trade and arbitration group, has been lead counsel to Canada in the never-ending softwood lumber dispute with the US that has given rise to a number of LCIA and NAFTA arbitrations.
TPAO instructed Hammond to oversee an ICSID case it filed in January 2011 against its partner in a Kazakhstan joint venture, the state-run energy company KazMunaiGas.
The firm also saw one of its successful cases of 2010 shortlisted in the category for “Arbitration Win of the Year” in the 2011 GAR awards. In RosInvestCo v Russian Federation, Townsend, James Boykin and Marc-Olivier Langlois secured compensation for a minority shareholder of Yukos based in the UK, in an SCC arbitration that is thought to be the first time Russia has been held liable for expropriation of the defunct oil group’s assets. The firm acted alongside Sweden’s Mannheimer Swartling and V V Veeder QC of Essex Court Chambers in London.