Schellenberg Wittmer

(The following information was supplied by the firm)

Firm Overview:
Schellenberg Wittmer is one of the leading Swiss business law firms. Over 150 lawyers in Zurich, Geneva and Singapore advise domestic and international clients on all aspects of business law. The firm offers a comprehensive range of services from focused advice to project management, for local or foreign companies and high net worth individuals. Schellenberg Wittmer’s Singapore office covers key jurisdictions and markets in the Asia- Pacific region, assisting clients in both inbound and outbound investments as well as in international arbitration.

Main Areas of Practice:

Dispute Resolution & International Arbitration:
Advising in all aspects of commercial litigation and arbitration, including full representation in proceedings, pre-litigation case assessment and ADR solutions, provisional and interim measures, asset tracing, as well as enforcement of arbitral awards and court judgments. Members of the group frequently sit as arbitrator.

Banking & Finance:
Advising Swiss and foreign banks, borrowers, insurance companies, fund managers and other financial institutions on the full range of legal and regulatory matters, from syndicated lending and acquisition finance to OTC transactions, structured products and prudential rules.

Capital Markets:
As authorised representatives at the six Swiss Exchange, working with domestic and foreign issuers on all aspects of Swiss equity and debt capital markets transactions, including IPOs, rights offerings, convertibles, share buy-backs, derivatives programs, bond and note issues and public tender offers.

Corporate & Commercial:
Assisting companies in all corporate and commercial matters including the establishment of businesses and corporate governance; assisting clients in drafting/ negotiating all contracts related to their businesses.

Mergers & Acquisitions, Private Equity & Venture Capital:
Advising on public takeovers, private mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, spin-offs and restructurings, assisting with seed/expansion capital, management buy-outs/buy-ins, pre-IPO investments and various aspects of asset management for private equity and venture capital.

Employment:
Assisting in all employment-related matters, i.e. employment documentation, labour litigation, residence and labour permits, employee participation schemes, severance packages, etc.

Taxation:
Advising companies and individuals on Swiss tax law, including double taxation treaties and VAT, acting as counsel in tax litigation, as well as extensive experience in tax enforcement matters.

Private Clients & Estates:
Working with individuals and families in the global planning and structuring of their private and business assets to ensure an efficient wealth structure and enable a smooth succession from one generation to the next; representing clients in estate and trust disputes.

Restructuring & Insolvency:
Assisting creditors and companies in restructuring, bankruptcy and reorganisation proceedings as well as complex insolvency matters; serving as court or FINMA-appointed trustees, liquidators and receivers.

Trade & Transport:
Providing support in all aspects of trade and transport, including sales and import/export contracts, trade finance, marine/cargo insurance, maritime/aviation/ land transportation and ship/aircraft finance.

Real Estate & Construction:
Assisting on all issues relating to real estate and environment, including finding the best financing and investment structure, negotiating/drafting contracts to lease, purchase or sell Swiss real estate, planning/developing construction projects, contract management.

Insurance:
Representation in insurance and reinsurance-related litigation and arbitration; advising on all aspects of insurance law, including the establishment, relocation, conduct and run-off of (re-)insurance relating to activities in and from Switzerland and regulatory issues.

Intellectual Property & IT:
Advising on all areas of intellectual property, including drafting/negotiating agreements and representing clients in litigation and arbitration; assisting in structuring/negotiating IT projects and in drafting all related contracts.

Competition & Antitrust:
Advising comprehensively on merger control and the impact of Swiss and EU competition law on client commercial practices and agreements; representing clients in administrative proceedings brought by the Swiss Competition Commission.

White-Collar Crime & Compliance:
Representing companies or officers unwillingly involved in criminal investigations and proceedings; leading large scale internal investigations; advice regarding international assistance between foreign and domestic law enforcement authorities and all aspects of compliance.

Sports, Arts & Entertainment:
Advising collectors, museums, auction houses, galleries, artists, insurers, etc. in all matters relating to art works or entire collections, including sale, loan and consignment, import/export, copyrights, insurance as well as litigation; advising sports organisations, athletes and sponsors as well as media companies in all matters related to their businesses. The firm also represents clients both in prosecution and defence, in high-stake cross-border arbitration matters before various adjudicatory bodies of many sports federations, as well as before CAS. This includes violations of the WADA code, issues with media rights and sponsorship agreements, unfair competition and dismissal claims, large-scale corruption investigations, and highly disputed bids for hosting major sports events.

Life Sciences:
Advising in all aspects of pharmaceuticals, biotechnology and food law, including regulatory and contractual matters such as licensing and R&D agreements; assisting clients in health law, medical malpractice and product liability matters.

Blockchain Technologies & Fintech:
Multidisciplinary and integrated team advising clients looking to take full advantage of the high potential of blockchain technology, Areas advised on include crowd-funding (preliminary analysis and set-up), incorporation of legal entities in Switzerland, initial coin offering setup, smart contracts, data protection and transaction security, tax implications, dispute resolution.

Hotels & Leisure:
Counsel to hotel chains and investors on all legal matters in the hospitality industry including acquisitions, disposals, developments, construction, litigation and M&A, leasing and operation.

International Work:
Schellenberg Wittmer has long-standing international experience in all of the practice areas. The firm advises on large-scale international M&A and finance transactions, and handles international litigation and arbitration. It has recently advised international clients on various cross-border acquisitions and recapitalisations, debt and equity capital market transactions, on establishing internationally active investment funds and on the structuring of relocations of corporate world headquarters to Switzerland.

Clients:
The firm’s clients include large and medium sized domestic and international businesses from a wide range of sectors including public and private, banks and financial institutions, industries, insurances, IT and telecommunications, life sciences, etc. The firm also advises private individuals and wealthy families from all over the world.

Managing Partner: Philipp Bärtsch
Number of partners worldwide: 44 Number of other lawyers worldwide: 116
Languages: Arabic, Chinese, Dutch, English, French, German, Hebrew, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish

Key Contacts

Philipp Bärtsch, LL.M., Managing Partner 

Firm Rankings

Administrative & Public Law
Band 3

6.0

Arbitration
Band 1

Banking & Finance
Band 2

8.7

Capital Markets
Band 2

8.0

Capital Markets: Debt
Band 2

8.0

Capital markets: Equity
Band 3

6.0

Capital Markets: Structured Finance
Band 3

6.0

Competition/Antitrust
Band 2

8.0

Corporate/M&A
Band 2

8.0

Data Protection
Band 2

8.0

FinTech
Band 2

8.0

Funds
Band 2

8.0

Insurance
Band 1

IP
Band 2

8.0

IP: Patents
Band 3

6.0

IP: Patents: Contentious
Band 3

7.0

IP: Patents: Transactions
Band 3

7.0

IP: Trademarks
Band 3

6.0

IP: trademarks: Contentious
Band 3

7.0

Labour & Employment
Band 2

8.0

Life Sciences
Band 3

7.0

Litigation
Band 1

9.2

Private Client
Band 1

Private Wealth Law
Band 1

Real Estate
Band 1

9.0

Restructuring & Insolvency
Band 1

9.3

Sports Law
Band 2

8.0

Tax
Band 2

8.0

TMT
Band 2

8.0

Transport
Band 1

White-Collar Crime
Band 1

Articles

Unexpected Severe Events – Learnings from the Pandemic for Swiss Law M&A Transactions

The pandemic had various impacts on M&A practitioners, one being that attorneys quickly updated their transactional documents to consider the new “normal” – a more volatile business environment. The typical general areas of concern are the definitions of the material adverse change (MAC) or material adverse event (MAE) clause (which would provide the buyer with […]

31 May 2022
Facilitation of Withholding Tax and Securities Transfer Tax

As of 1 January 2023, there will be facilitations with regard to withholding tax and securities transfer tax. Among other things, the withholding tax on interest payments on bonds and the securities transfer tax on trading in domestic bonds will be abolished. Read more

05 May 2022
Challenge to formal and substantive validity of arbitration agreement dismissed

In a recently published German-language decision, the Swiss Supreme Court (SSC) rejected a motion to set aside a partial award on jurisdiction based on article 190(2)(b) of the Swiss Private International Law Act (PILA). Downloads  Challenge to formal and substantive validity of arbitration agreement dismissed

04 Apr 2022
Relative Market Power and Geo-Blocking: Behavioural Adjustments are Necessary

On 1 January 2022 changes in Swiss antitrust and fair-trading law has entered into force. New rules of conduct are established for companies with so-called “relative market power”, which have far-reaching effects. Also, a geo-blocking ban was introduced, which is intended to prevent discrimination. Download full PDF PDF English  PDF German  PDF French  

04 Apr 2022
Swiss Federal Supreme Court Case Law of 2021 on Selected Procedural Law Issues

In this newsletter, we discuss four selected decisions of the past year, in which the Federal Supreme Court dealt with the impact of Brexit on the applicability of the Lugano Convention, the effects of the withdrawal of an action for negative declaratory relief, the appeal procedure in mutual assistance in criminal matters and the protection […]

02 Mar 2022
A decision ex aequo et bono without authority may be incompatible with public policy

In a recently published French-language decision, the Swiss Supreme Court rejected a motion to set aside an ICC partial award made under article 190(2)(e) of the Swiss Private International Law Act (PILA), which allows parties to challenge awards that are incompatible with public policy. The underlying dispute concerned a share purchase agreement (SPA) governed by […]

02 Mar 2022
Violations of Swiss Constitution or EU Convention on Human Rights do not amount to a violation of substantive public policy

In a recently published French-language decision, the Swiss Supreme Court dismissed an application to set aside an ICC award for alleged violation of substantive public policy. In Decision 4A_453/2021, the Swiss Supreme Court dismissed an application to set aside an award based on alleged violations of substantive public policy. The court found, among other things, […]

01 Feb 2022
Why the Revised Swiss Data Protection Act Matters for International Companies

The revised DPA brings Swiss data protection law closer to the GDPR. But some differences will remain and will have to be complied with by international companies with entities or business in Switzerland, due to the revised DPA’s extraterritorial applicability. Our newsletter provides an overview and suggestions on how to ensure compliance. Authors Samuel Klaus, Roland […]

22 Dec 2021
Swiss Rules of International Arbitration (Swiss Rules) 2021

1. The institution is rebranded the “Swiss Arbitration Centre” – arbitration agreements referring to SCAI or the chambers of commerce remain valid and binding. 2. The revised Rules entered into force on 1 June 2021 and apply to all arbitration proceedings which are initiated on or after that date, unless the parties have agreed otherwise. 3. […]

25 Aug 2021

Press Releases

Schellenberg Wittmer advises Julius Baer Group Ltd on its sale of Fransad Gestion SA

Schellenberg Wittmer advised Julius Baer Group Ltd on its sale of Fransad Gestion SA, a major Swiss independent wealth manager, to the management team of the independent wealth manager (MBO) and an industrial partner. The transaction, which was executed on 1 June 2022, follows the decision of Julius Baer to reduce the complexity of its […]

28 Jun 2022
Schellenberg Wittmer advises Credaris AG on its acquisition of credit intermediary Milenia SA

Schellenberg Wittmer advised Credaris AG on its purchase of credit intermediary Milenia SA. The acquisition will create a new player in the consumer loan market with around 80 employees in Zurich and Lausanne arranging an annual loan volume of approximately CHF 400 million Read more

28 Jun 2022
Switzerland – Schellenberg Wittmer wins “Law Firm of the Year

Schellenberg Wittmer has been recognized as law firm of the year: Switzerland, at The Lawyer European Awards 2021 for the second year in a row. This marks a prestigious win and a wonderful conclusion to the firm’s 20 years celebrations. Schellenberg Wittmer was awarded by the jury for its market position and constant striving for […]

22 Dec 2021
Schellenberg Wittmer New Partner and Counsel

We are extremely pleased and proud to announce Grégoire Tribolet as Partner in our Banking & Finance practice, Giulia Marchettini as Counsel in our Dispute Resolution practice, and Katherine Bell as Counsel in our Dispute Resolution and Construction practices, as of 1 January 2021. Grégoire Tribolet specializes in banking & finance, and advises banks, asset managers […]

18 Jan 2021
Schellenberg Wittmer wins “Law Firm of the Year – Switzerland” at The Lawyer European Awards 2020

Schellenberg Wittmer has been recognized as law firm of the year: Switzerland, at The Lawyer European Awards 2020. This marks a prestigious win, accompanying the firm also celebrating its 20 year anniversary of high-standing in the legal market , – consistent with the awards that celebrate excellence across the European legal market. Leading firms across […]

18 Jan 2021

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