Banking & Finance
This firm has an outstanding market share in terms of banking and financial clients. The team handles the full range of work in the sector, from transactional and regulatory matters to litigation. It recently advised Citibank on a USD 25 million loan to the Uruguayan stated-owned electricity company UTE. The team also acts for the IFC and Barclays. Sources say : “This firm has made the effort to understand how we work and can therefore provide tailored advice.”
Nicolás Herrera is a revered figure in the market: “He is without a doubt one of the most experienced and highly regarded lawyers in Uruguay and a very intelligent and strategic manager.” Nicolás Piaggio works closely with Herrera and is a “smart and pragmatic lawyer”, according to clients. He has been involved in many high-profile transactions over the past year and led the team acting for Citi and Barclays on the Republic of Uruguay´s recent USD 500 million issuance of debt. Álvaro Tarabal is highly regarded for his experience and capital markets expertise, and “always finds a solution to the most complex issues”, according to clients. He represented Arcos Dorados in its USD 450 million bond offering in the USA. Partner Diego Baldomir and associate Juan Manuel Mercant are both highly valued by clients.
CORPORATE / M&A
The firm Guyer & Regules has an outstanding reputation both in the local market and internationally. The full-service firm is a market leader across the board and advises on the full range of corporate matters. The team handles many of the biggest M&A deals in Uruguay and acts for an impressive clientele, including many of the most important companies and financial institutions in the country. It recently advised Stora Enso on a joint venture with Arauco and on the acquisition of ENCE’s forestry assets for a total of USD 600 million, which at the time was the largest M&A deal ever in Uruguay. Sources say: “The firm combines excellent client service and technical knowledge”. “The team provides excellent practical and commercial advice at every stage of a transaction – the lawyers always demonstrate thorough knowledge and experience and go beyond the legal aspects, taking time to understand our business”.
Nicolás Herrera is “a very experienced and versatile lawyer who knows the Uruguayan market inside out at both economic and political levels”. He is particularly recommended for cross-border M&A and “has good judgement and superb English”, according to clients. Nicolás Piaggio works closely with Herrera and is “a go-to corporate lawyer – sophisticated and pragmatic.” One client said: “The two of them form a truly terrific team – they are complete transactional lawyers and provide excellent client service”. Álvaro Tarabal is a prominent corporate and finance lawyer who is “extremely smart, fast and reliable”, according to clients. He led the team advising Hal Investments on the acquisition of the chain of optical shops Optica Alcazar. Associates Corina Bove and Valentina Larrobla provide excellent support and are highly valued by clients.
This top-notch full-service firm has an outstanding dispute resolution department, according to sources: “It’s the number-one team in the market due to its invaluable experience”. Clients also highlight the firm’s “excellent connections across Latin America”. The team is currently representing Philip Morris in several claims regarding legal and administrative regulation on tobacco packaging. Partner Carlos Brandes co-heads the department and is a standout name in the market: “He is an excellent litigator who is always available and provides good client service”. Associate María Eloísa Cerdeña is a rising star. She worked alongside Brandes on the defense of Telefónica in a case brought by ANTEL over an alleged breach of contract.
Labour & Employment
“Guyer & Regules is one of the most complete law firms in Uruguay – the team combines availability, adaptability, good client service and market understanding”, according to clients. The labour department offers excellent advice and has vast experience in complex cases. Clients say: “The team deals with our issues as if they were theirs – we feel fully represented.” The team also has the resources to handle large files. Recent highlights include successfully representing Uruguay’s Chamber of Commerce and Chamber of Industry in challenging the country’s collective bargaining law. Leonardo Slinger is a reference point in the market and is highly respected by sources: “Everybody takes into full consideration the points he makes – there are never any grey areas and he always gives the right advice”. Clients also highlight his availability: “You can email him or get him on the phone 24 hours a day”. Eduardo Ameglio is another prominent name in the market and heads the department with Slinger. Associate María José Poey is highlighted for her work on labour lawsuits. All three lawyers worked together to represent Urupanel at the Labour Ministry in negotiations related to a labour conflict with the union regarding an increase of labour benefits.
“This firm is outstanding – it provides consistent services across its different departments and has an excellent tax capacity, including highly qualified senior lawyers and accountants”, according to sources. The tax department regularly provides tax advice on transactions and is also active in transfer pricing and tax liquidation. Recent highlights include advising Citi and Barclays on all tax matters related to the Uruguayan government’s USD 500 million issuance of sovereign debt. Juan Manuel Albacete heads the practice group and stands out for his deep knowledge of tax law.