Moscow

The Moscow office of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP is the base for the firm’s practice in Russia and the CIS, which is Akin Gump’s largest practice outside the United States. We have a prestigious history in Russia and the CIS and have been active on some of the most important matters in the region for nearly 20 years.

Akin Gump’s Moscow office is home to a team of highly knowledgeable Russian-, English- and U.S.-qualified lawyers with extensive experience working with both Russian and non-Russian clients. Lawyers from the Moscow office collaborate closely with Akin Gump lawyers and policy advisors in other offices around the world to advise clients with respect to capital market transactions in Russia and the West; mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, privatizations and other transactions in Russia and the CIS; arbitration and litigation in Russia and other jurisdictions; and complex public law and policy matters.

Lawyers in several other offices—notably London, Hong Kong, Abu Dhabi, Geneva, New York, Washington, D.C., and Houston—play important roles on the firm’s Russia and CIS team and enable the firm to advise on matters governed by Russian, U.S. and English law.

General Corporate Matters

Akin Gump’s Russian corporate practice is a part of the firm’s wider corporate practice. We counsel private equity and hedge funds, public and private companies, sovereign entities and financial advisors in connection with their transactional, finance and ongoing business needs. We regularly lead complex and sophisticated transactions, crossing borders and industries, including numerous heavily regulated industries. Akin Gump’s Russian corporate team has been recognized for its role in numerous headline-making transactions, including some of the largest recent transactions in the financial services, energy and telecommunications industries.

Mergers and Acquisitions/Joint Ventures

At Akin Gump, we offer mergers and acquisitions services to mid- and large-cap clients—backed by the firm’s global resources, key relationships and multi-industry, multidisciplinary experience. Our Moscow team consists of internationally experienced and trained Russian partners and associates. Our experience includes every type of M&A transaction, including negotiated transactions, auction processes, hostile takeovers, leveraged buyouts, “going private” transactions, joint ventures and strategic alliances, and tender offers involving public and privately held companies. Our experience in mergers and acquisitions includes some of the largest acquisitions and dispositions of shares and assets involving public and private businesses in Russia/CIS and globally.

Energy

Energy is a major focus of Akin Gump’s worldwide practice and has been central to the firm’s Russian practice from the start. Akin Gump has been involved in several important “firsts” in Russia’s energy sector, including the first public listing of a Russian energy company’s securities on a Western stock exchange, the first international pipeline project and the first Eurobond issued by a Russian oil and gas company. We have represented Russian and international energy companies in all phases of their business, from capital markets and finance to joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions and large development and infrastructure projects. These representations have allowed us to develop further our well-established worldwide energy experience. As a consequence of our deep roots in the global energy industry, we are able to bring an informed and seasoned perspective to the work we perform for our clients in Russia.

Telecommunications

Akin Gump’s Moscow office has a leading telecommunications practice advising on some of the most significant Russia and CIS-related transactions in recent years. Lawyers in our Moscow office work closely with our lawyers in London, Abu Dhabi and New York. We also advise our clients on major telecommunications dispute resolution matters.

Capital Markets Transactions

Our capital markets practice includes the representation of issuers, underwriters and investors in a wide variety of public and private offerings of securities in Russia, the United Kingdom, the United States and the Netherlands, including on the Russian Trading System, the Official List of the London Stock Exchange (LSE), the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) and the Specialist Fund Market (SFM). The firm’s experience includes offerings of debt, equity and convertible securities; warrants; and interests in public and private investment funds. Lawyers in our Moscow office work closely with lawyers based in London and New York.

Banking and Finance

Akin Gump has an extensive international banking and finance practice that provides advice on secured and unsecured bank finance and hedging arrangements. We primarily represent corporate borrowers raising funds in international debt markets. We also represent a variety of clients, including financial institutions and funds, in complex structured finance transactions and financial derivatives. Lawyers in Moscow work closely with lawyers in the firm’s London office on financings and offerings in international markets, with the firm’s funds and derivatives lawyers on hedging transactions and with the firm’s energy practice on corporate and project finance transactions in the oil and gas, mining and electrical generation industries.

Real Estate

Akin Gump’s Moscow real estate team consists of 12 Moscow-based lawyers advising on Russian and cross-border real estate transactions. Akin Gump is a market leader in domestic development and investment deals as well as property finance deals and combine this knowledge with our award-winning Russian and international mergers and acquisitions practice. Akin Gump is also well known for its leading global private equity fund formation practice, enabling the Moscow real estate team to have unique access to cutting-edge investment strategies. We have advised Russian and international developers, land owners, project owners, investors, banks, insurers, construction companies, hotel operators and end-users on a wide range of real estate matters, including acquisitions and divestments; development and operation of real estate assets; greenfield and brownfield project development; creation of joint ventures; sale of completed projects; real estate fund formation; project financings and refinancing; real estate litigation and arbitration; and preparation for listing.

Tax

The Moscow office of Akin Gump offers both corporate tax planning for businesses and personal tax advice to high-net-worth individuals based in, or expanding to, Russia. Our Moscow office houses experienced internationally recognized attorneys who meld legal and tax advice concerning tax-effective multijurisdictional transactions, cross-border restructurings and real estate transactions. Their knowledge and experience is enhanced through Akin Gump’s cross-border, cross-practice style of firmwide collaboration. Clients include national- and international-scale enterprises in the retail, automotive, energy, fund, banking and metals sectors.

Among the corporate tax services we offer Russian and international clients—      

  • advice on compliance obligations and tax planning options
  • advice concerning Russian and international assessments on mergers and acquisitions, private equity and hedge fund tax structuring and taxation of financial transactions, including private and public placements, debt restructurings and syndicated loans
  • advice regarding tax implications of cross-border transactions, including mergers and acquisitions, real estate, reorganizations and restructuring
  • due diligence on financial and tax matters.

Dispute Resolution

Akin Gump has represented numerous Russian clients in arbitration and litigation in Russia and abroad, as well as international clients in matters in Russia courts. We have successfully represented our clients in corporate disputes, challenges of governmental and municipal acts, contractual disputes, labor disputes, antitrust litigation and other civil disputes. Our lawyers have extensive experience representing clients before courts at all levels, as well as before international arbitration tribunals.

Public Law and Policy

The dynamic between public law, government regulations and cross-sectoral government policy, particularly regarding foreign policy and foreign trade issues, plays an important role in shaping the business environment in Russia. A clear understanding of this dynamic and its effects is crucial for assessing the risk of, and choosing the right strategy for, business projects.

During recent years, a clear emerging trend has been the increasing role of governmental and political factors in shaping the legal, investment and business management environment for foreign companies in Russia. At the same time, Russian companies themselves are becoming more and more international, actively expanding investments and businesses abroad. As a result, they are becoming increasingly exposed not only to foreign governments’ laws and regulations, but also to the policies and regulations of international organizations. We counsel clients regarding new and upcoming changes in the international legal and regulatory environment in order to allow them to tailor their overall strategies to allow for, and capitalize on, these factors.

Recent accolades and rankings of Akin Gump in Russia

  • “Corporate Team of the Year” at the Legal Business Awards 2012 in London
  • Winner of Corporate Law – Emerging Markets Law Firm of the Year at the 2011 Financial Times Innovative Lawyers Awards
  • Pravo.ru – Best Legal Firm in: Corporate/M&A; Natural Resources/Energy; Telecoms and Media in 2011
  • MERGERS.RU Awards – Best Legal Advisor of the Year: M&A in 2011