GAR 100 - 14th Edition

Gorrissen Federspiel

Gorrissen Federspiel

Professional notice

The Danish firm is representing multiple renewable energy companies

People in Who's Who Legal1
Pending cases as counsel13
Value of pending counsel workUS$455 million
Treaty cases as counsel0
Current arbitrator appointments4 (2 as chair or sole)
Lawyers sitting as arbitrator4

Gorrissen Federspiel was opened in 1869 by a Danish Supreme Court attorney and has since undergone a number of mergers to become one of the country’s largest firms.

The foundations for its international arbitration practice were laid in the 1930s, when legacy firm NJ Gorrissen began working on commercial disputes in the maritime insurance and energy sectors. NJ Gorrissen would later merge with another firm that opened that decade, Per Federspiel, which is said to have been the first Danish practice targeted at international clients.

Today, the firm’s 33-strong disputes practice is led by Henriette Gernaa, a dual-qualified lawyer who acts as counsel and arbitrator and is a board member of the Danish Arbitration Association. Lotte Eskesen leads the practice in the Danish city of Aarhus.

Other names to know are Jacob Skude Rasmussen, a former Danish diplomat who acts in banking and finance, IT and professional liability disputes; and Kenneth Hvelplund Pedersen, who specialises in M&A disputes and is seen as a rising star.

Who uses it?

Gorrissen Federspiel has several clients in the financial sector, including Carnegie Investment Bank, Danske Bank, Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley. It has also represented accountancy firms Deloitte and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Other users are HBO Nordic and Maersk Oil. The firm also reports advising the Danish Institute of Arbitration and the Danish Institute for Human Rights.

Track record

Much of the firm’s casework cannot be disclosed but previous instructions include acting for a client in a gas pricing arbitration worth over US$300 million.

It represented a well-known energy company in two post-M&A UNCITRAL arbitrations worth a combined US$38 million.

Other past work includes representing a construction company in a dispute over a UK project; a transport company settling an arbitration over delivery of faulty equipment; and a client in a FIDIC arbitration with a state.

Recent events

Gorrissen Federspiel is acting for private equity firm FSN Capital Partners in two international arbitrations arising out of a share purchase. The first case was settled to the client’s full benefit and the second had an award handed down in June 2020.

It is representing several companies in the renewable energy sector concerning insurance arbitration and construction arbitration, respectively, amounting to a total of US$228 million.

A major tech company is using it in a US$303 million arbitration over the delivery of an IT system and it is also acting in a dispute between an IT developer and subcontractor regarding a public sector educational platform.

It has represented an international company providing services for pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries in a US$6 million breach of warranty claim, and an insurance company in a US$11 million post-M&A arbitration.

Client comment

Nicolai Norrbom, principal at FSN Capital, says that Gorrissen Federspiel’s work was of a “very high quality”, and in particular praised Henriette Gernaa for her “excellent cross-examination”.

Thomas Arendt, senior vice president at renewables company Vestas, says Gorrissen Federspiel provides “top-notch legal services”.

A general counsel at one company says he is “very pleased” with the firm and considers Gernaa to be “top class” for complex large-scale matters and a “strong strategic thinker.”

What distinguishes us is our ability to compose specialist teams with competencies across 29 practice areas tailored to our clients’ needs – making us innovative rather than traditional. It is our vision to provide legal advice and services of the utmost highest quality while addressing our clients’ specific requirements.

Our market position is the result of constant dedication to quality, and leading Danish companies and multinational corporations seek our expertise and specialist advice on complex and industry-leading transactions. International outlook is part of our DNA, and Gorrissen Federspiel has distinguished international relations with leading law firms across the globe. Because of our network and our comprehension and application of global trends, we can offer advice of the highest international standards.

Our characteristics

Excellent coverage within all areas of commercial law

We pride ourselves in maintaining expert coverage within all relevant areas of commercial law and within all industries.

24/7 accessibility

We are accessible at all times to our clients and other advisors, and we allocate the required resources to be able to resolve all relevant matters swiftly.

Efficient core team structure

Legal advice to our clients is best handled by employing a fully devoted core team, supported by specialists and dedicated to the client whenever needed.

Effective transaction management

We adjust management and coordination as required and appropriate for each transaction.

The extra mile

We aim to exceed our clients’ expectations, and we go the extra mile to serve our clients successfully.

Contact Us

Please contact us +4533414141 or
Email us: [email protected].


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