PwC Legal Estonia 2019 HIGHLIGHTS

We were the first law firm in Estonia to apply for an operating license on behalf of our client - an investment firm – for a multilateral trading facility for digital securities. The facility essentially provides a stock exchange environment similar to that provided by Nasdaq but for digital assets.

PwC Legal Estonia 2019 highlights

PwC Legal Estonia 2019 highlights

Together with the international experts of PwC we prepared an analysis commissioned by the EBRD for the European Commission and Estonia’s Ministry of Finance on how to open up the legal framework of the Estonian financial market to innovative solutions, so that FinTech and RegTech companies could test and develop their services.

In collaboration with the experts of PwC’s network, we advised the Estonian financial institutions that provide credit products and tax services in dozens of countries on how to comply with local AML/CFT requirements.

PwC Legal Estonia 2019 highlights

● The Project Management Office (PMO) of PwC Legal Estonia helped Bolt in its project to change its business name in almost 20 countries in Europe and Africa, coordinating the activities of a team consisting of nearly 100 members.
● We contributed to Bolt expanding its business activities to Kazakhstan and Armenia and helped Bolt to implement corporate changes in their African subsidiaries.

VICTORY in a landmark corruption case: our litigation team led by Attorney-at-Law Indrek Leppik represented Mr Aivar Tuulberg, a construction businessman, in a major corruption case known in Estonia as the Savisaar case. The client was acquitted on 14 January 2020. Mr Leppik showed a video presentation during his court speech, which is reportedly a first time that a defence attorney has made use of such innovative tools in an Estonian court. This unprecedented approach was also acknowledged by the judge.

A LEGAL PRECEDENT: we successfully represented our client in a dispute where a fraudulent scheme had been devised to disguise a company’s transfer during the final state of real estate development. The developer had transferred some of the unsold apartments for a non-monetary payment to several persons under a sales contract, which resulted in the bankruptcy of the developer. The court evaluated the specific nature of the company’s business, i.e. real estate development and agreed that if the final stage of the development of an apartment building involved only the sale of apartments, such sale constituted a sole activity of the company at that stage.  Transfer of this activity equals transfer of the company. The action of our client was granted in full.

The dispute team of PwC Legal successfully represented Bank Sankt-Petersburg in its action against a bailiff, whereby our client demanded that the bailiff be ordered to pay a penalty for delaying transfer of funds. During the dispute, Estonia’s Supreme Court provided fundamental guidelines on the legal issue, changing its earlier position. As the bailiff has failed to pay the full amount of penalty for late payment, the client has initiated another precedent-setting dispute against the Estonian Chamber of Bailiffs and Trustees and the state. This case is presently pending before courts.

Representation of certificate holders in the scandalous VEB Fond case. We submitted a damage claim in the amount of more than 10,000,000 euros against the state to the administrative court.

Our tax disputes team had a busy year - we are dealing with approximately a dozen ongoing complex tax disputes, three of which concern the constitutionality of certain legal provisions.

In 2019, an extensive commentary on Public Procurement Act was published. Four public procurement specialists of PwC Legal - Erki Fels, Priit Lätt, Erko-Andreas Roosik ja Liisa Levandi - contributed to this 1400-page book.

We represented and advised AS Eesti Raudtee (Estonia’s state-owned railway company) in preparing and conducting major procurements for railway infrastructure, and the disputes arising thereof, , including a public procurement on modernisation of crossings and crosswalks with the cost of 11 million euros.

RECORD AMOUNTS in Estonian procurement disputes: the team of PwC Legal advises Gemalto AG, an international company that provides digital security solutions, in a dispute related to the performance of the public contract on Estonian identity documents.

Procurement dispute related to the NATIONAL DEFENCE: the team of PwC Legal represented MBDA, a European arms manufacturer, in a 40-million-euro public procurement related to anti-tank weapons.

The team of PwC Legal advised the “Digital Montenegro” project, analysing whether Montenegro’s current legal system was well-adjusted for the use of public e-services.

Advising Porto Franco on several transactions related to construction funding.

Representing Linnakodu, one of the largest residential rental real estate managers in Estonia, in acquisition of portfolio assets and related negotiations. We also provide regular advice to them on current legal issues.

Advising Colonna, one of the largest business real estate investors in Estonia and the Baltics, on current legal issues and dispute resolution.

Advising Pipedrive, a leading global provider of CRM-software solutions, on concluding a lease agreement for its new office in Tartu and related negotiations.

Ongoing advising of CAPFIELD, one of the largest owners and developers of shopping centres in Estonia on several ongoing legal issues.

PwC’s Estonian and Finnish teams advised a major transaction in timber industry whereby Thermory, an Estonian funded manufacturer of timber and sauna materials acquired a majority interest in Siparila, a Finnish manufacturer of timber materials.

The transactions team of PwC Legal Estonia advised the acquisition of iD Süsteemide OÜ, a developer of commercial technological solutions.

The team of PwC Legal advised investors related to Colonna on acquisition of ISS Eesti, Estonia’s largest real estate management and maintenance company.

The transactions team of PwC Legal advised OneMed group on a transaction where the company acquired Mercurio OÜ.

We advised the cross-border merger of Forum Cinemas OÜ and its Latvian and Lithuanian subsidiaries SIA FORUM CINEMAS and UAB “FORUM CINEMAS”.

PwC Legal is honoured to be the sole legal advisor of the e-residency team in Estonia. In 2019, we advised our client on issues of data protection, Brexit and intellectual property.

SUPREME COURT PRECEDENT: Our court team, led by Attorney-at-Law Indrek Kukk, will represent the dance school JJ Street in a dispute with the Estonian Performers Association on whether the dance school is obliged to pay fees for the music played in its classes.

PRECEDENT-SETTING ROYALTY DISPUTE: Our court team, led by Attorney-at-Law Priit Lätt, will represent nine Estonian artistic associations in the so-called “blank tape levy” dispute to enforce high-level protection for authors and other rights owners in the information society, allowing them to receive appropriate compensation for the use of their works.

Advising HumanLink, the leading provider of labour leasing services on performing a labour law audit that involved reviewing and updating all of their employment related documents.

Advising Ensto Ensek, a technology company that provides smart electrical solutions, on employee leasing and preparation of e agreements on occupational safety.

Advising a globally operating company Pesmel Eesti that provides technological solutions for production logistics, warehousing and packaging on preparation of employee  leasing agreements and  updating their employment documents of key importance.

Contact us

Viljar Kähari

Viljar Kähari

Managing Partner / Head of Banking & Finance, PwC Legal

Tel: +372 508 4777

Kadri Lindpere

Kadri Lindpere

Marketing and Communication Leader, PwC Estonia

Tel: +372 505 1239

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