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Energy

Full-Range Sector-Specific Advice

Schellenberg Wittmer's expertise in the energy sector spans the full range of legal disciplines. We offer industry-specific advice and legal representation over all sub-sectors, including oil & gas, electricity and renewables. Our practice covers all markets, including emerging markets particularly in Asia, where we operate an office in Singapore.

Contact

Elliott Geisinger
Partner Geneva
Dr. Lorenzo Olgiati
Partner Zurich
Partner
Dr. Christopher Boog
Partner Zurich / Singapore
Elliott Geisinger
Partner Geneva
Dr. Manuel Liatowitsch
Partner Zurich
David Mamane
Partner Zurich
Dr. Lorenzo Olgiati
Partner Zurich
Prof. Dr. Nathalie Voser
Partner Zurich
Full Team
Dr. Christopher Boog
Partner Zurich / Singapore
Elliott Geisinger
Partner Geneva
Dr. Manuel Liatowitsch
Partner Zurich
David Mamane
Partner Zurich
Dr. Lorenzo Olgiati
Partner Zurich
Prof. Dr. Nathalie Voser
Partner Zurich
Dr. Samuel Hagenstein-Jost
Counsel Zurich
Bryan Fok
Associate Geneva
Anya George
Associate Zurich
Sebastiano Nessi
Associate Geneva
Derric Yeoh
Associate Singapore

Expertise

Our advisory services to the industry include:

  • Structuring;
  • Financing and negotiation of energy projects;
  • Production;
  • Distribution;
  • Marketing and sales of oil, gas, electricity and other products;
  • Licenses;
  • Concessions;
  • Mergers and acquisitions;
  • Joint ventures;
  • Public procurement;
  • Competition;
  • Antitrust;
  • Intellectual property law;
  • Tax and regulatory advice.

 

Our specialists also counsel on international trade and investment matters. The firm's extensive construction and real estate practices regularly advise on large-scale energy projects, including planning, negotiation and drafting of contracts, construction contract management and advising on environmental and regulatory issues.


We also have the experience, breadth and expertise to advise and represent clients in the most complex of international disputes. We have a wealth of know-how in preventing, managing and resolving energy disputes by means of litigation, arbitration and other alternative dispute resolution processes, including mediation, adjudication, and dispute boards. We are regularly retained in a wide array of sector-specific disputes, including those regarding price revision of long-term gas contracts, PPA's, energy construction projects, joint ventures, etc.


Our experience includes:

Transactions

  • Counsel to Canton of Graubünden and Axpo Holding AG, the main shareholders in SIX-listed electric power company Repower AG, in connection with Repower's strategic repositioning, delisting and CHF 170 million capital increase subscribed by EKZ and UBS Clean Energy Infrastructure Switzerland KGK (UBS-CEIS);
  • Advising Services Industriels de Genève (SIG) in the acquisition of 15.05% of the shares in SIX-listed Energiedienst Holding AG, Laufenburg (EDH) from EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg AG, Germany which has a stake of approximately 82% in EDH. SIG has significantly improved its opportunities for the purchase of renewable energy;
  • Advising Innobas AG, Flums, and its shareholders in the carve out of its electricity power plant into the newly established EW Schils AG, followed by the subsequent sale of 100% of the share capital of that company to St. Gallisch-Appenzellische Kraftwerke AG, St. Gallen;
  • Counsel to Varo Energy in its acquisition of tank storage facilities near Lausanne and the entire consumer distribution and sales network for domestic heating oil, gasoline and diesel in Switzerland, from Total (Suisse) SA;
  • Advising global alternative asset manager The Carlyle Group in its acquisition of a 50% stake in Swiss based Varo Energy Group, a major energy company active in oil refining, pipeline, storage and wholesale distribution including the big Cressier refinery in Switzerland from Vitol Group and Atlas Invest;
  • Advising NASDAQ-listed Advanced Energy Industries, Inc., Fort Collins, Colorado, a global leader in reliable power conversion solutions used in thin-film plasma manufacturing processes and solar energy generation, in its acquisition of Solvix SA, a European specialist in electrical supply and generator units for high technology applications from CPA Group SA, both headquartered in Switzerland.

 

Regulatory

  • Advising SIX-listed BKW FMB Energie AG, the holding company of the Berne based energy and power supply group Bernische Kraftwerke in connection with the disposal by its anchor shareholder E.ON, the German listed energy and power supply company, of its 21% stake in BKW in an aggregate transaction value of EUR 526 million;
  • Counsel to Varo Energy in various merger control proceedings with the Swiss Competition Commission;
  • Advising major Swiss electricity producers and the industry association (Swisselectric) with regard to electricity production and cooperation models;
  • Advising BKW, a major Swiss electricity producer and distributor in the transfer of its transmission grid to Swissgrid; counsel to BKW in the evaluation proceeding for the transfer of the network;
  • Advising various Swiss major electricity providers regarding the regulation of system services to the Swiss national network operator Swissgrid;
  • Advising various Swiss major electricity providers regarding tariffs (electricity and network tariffs);
  • Representation of a substantial part of large Swiss energy producers and distributors in important cases in administrative law procedures concerning energy and grid tariffs, grid evaluation, transfer of parts of the grid to the national grid operator Swissgrid;
  • Representation of the leading Swiss power production and distribution utility company BKW in various energy and grid tariff matters and court proceedings concerning the transfer of parts of the grid to Swissgrid, as well as the tariffs and costs of the transfer network;
  • Counsel to a leading Swiss energy group in a successful appeal against grid tariffs and as a consequence appeal against the amount of interest for the amount due to be repaid to the client;
  • Representation of a Vaud-based energy group in a tariff procedure for energy and grid tariffs.

 

Litigation/Arbitration

  • Representation of the Russian Federation before the Swiss Supreme Court in setting-aside proceedings relating to an award rendered under the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT). The decision is published in the hard-copy collection of Swiss Supreme Court decisions;
  • Counsel to a large international group active in the energy and commodity trading sectors in a EUR 20 million commodity trading dispute. The arbitration was seated in Paris under Senegalese law;
  • Swiss lead counsel to MOL Hungarian Oil and Gas plc. in an UNCITRAL arbitration seated in Geneva. The dispute is with the Republic of Croatia under an agreement pursuant to which our client obtained management control over INA, a Croatian energy company;
  • Representation of Hungary before the Swiss Supreme Court in setting-aside proceedings of an arbitral award rendered by an arbitral tribunal constituted under the ECT. The decision is also published in the hard-copy collection of Swiss Supreme Court decisions;
  • Representation of a leading energy company in a price revision dispute;
  • Defense of leading Russian Energy Company against a corporate liability claim brought by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. This matter concerns civil litigation that has been brought to the Swiss Courts;
  • Counsel to a German energy group in arbitration, as well as parallel litigation and enforcement proceedings in Switzerland and abroad against a Russian counterparty over the exploration of large gas fields in Russia and long-term gas delivery contracts.

Awards and Recognitions

Leading practitioners are highly ranked for their work in energy across international directories and publications:

  • Chambers in Global and Europe Corporate M&A
  • Chambers in Global and Europe Arbitration
  • Chambers in Europe Competition
  • Legal 500 in Corporate M&A
  • Legal 500 in Arbitration
  • Legal 500 in Public Law