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B2RLAW 2020. All rights reserved.
Bartłomiej Jankowski recommended in the Chambers & Partners ranking 2023
We are proud to announce that in this year’s edition of Chambers & Partners Europe Guide 2023 our Senior Partner – Bartłomiej Jankowski has been recommended in White Collar Crime category in Tier 2 (from Tier 3 in 2022)!
More information about White Collar Crime category in Chambers & Partners 2023 you may find here.
The Chambers Global Guide ranks the top lawyers and law firms in over 200 jurisdictions across the world.
That legal rankings is the most thorough and independent on the market. Each ranking is based on the in-depth research conducted by their dedicated and experienced team of researchers. Their unparalleled analysis of the legal market enables Chambers Global to deliver indispensable coverage and insights into the leading law firms and legal professionals.
Chambers Global provides recommendations that can be relied on, to ensure law firm clients are able to make the best-informed decision when choosing legal services when it matters.
B2RLaw advises Graham Partners on its acquisition of Taoglas
B2RLaw has advised Graham Partners, a private investment firm targeting technology-driven advanced manufacturing companies, on Polish aspects of its acquisition of Taoglas Group Holdings Ltd.
Graham Partners is a private investment firm focused on investing in technology-driven companies that are spurring innovation in advanced manufacturing, resulting in product substitutions, raw materials conversions, and disruptions to traditional end markets.
Taoglas, which is Irish headquartered and has 10 global facilities including in the US, Taiwan, China, India and Poland, is a trusted provider of antennas, advanced IoT components, and custom design services that helps customers navigate complex RF and wireless systems and brings connectivity solutions to market.
B2RLaw’s team was led by Partner Piotr Szelenbaum, and included Counsel Paulina Wyrostek; Associates Joanna Markowicz – Maciocha and Jacek Mizgier; Junior Associate Dorota Gajuk; and Paralegal Krzysztof Judasz.
Piotr Szelenbaum advises, “We are delighted to have supported Graham Partners on this successful transaction. Taoglas is a growing innovative business and following its acquisition by Graham Partners, we believe the business will go from strength to strength”.
New Compliance 360 practice at B2RLaw
B2RLaw has established a multidisciplinary team whose aim is to support clients in monitoring and adapting their activities to the evolving regulatory framework at a national and EU level. Its members include leading corporate lawyers and tax advisors in Poland.
The Compliance 360 practice includes consulting in the field of:
+ corporate governance;
+ the so-called Whistleblowers act;
+ IT, e-commerce and cybersecurity;
+ training for senior staff.
What distinguishes us is the combined experience of our extremely talented, international-class team which totals almost 100 years. Our goal is to provide clients with the comfort and legal security necessary for efficient decision-making in a dynamically changing business reality. In this context, it is extremely important to implement effective internal procedures. This requires a full understanding of a client’s business, which is why the Compliance 360 practice has its name, and includes lawyers and tax advisors specializing in specific and various areas of law and sectors of the economy – says Bartłomiej Jankowski, Advocate and Senior Partner at B2RLaw.
Members of the newly established practice advise companies from a number of industries on a daily basis, including: new technologies, energy, finance, manufacturing, construction, real estate, FMCG, media, defense and pharmaceuticals.
The leaders of the practice are Luiza Wyrębkowska Ph. D (Attorney-at-Law, Counsel), and Agnieszka Hajos-Iwańska Ph. D (Advocate, Partner)
Luiza is a leading lawyer, an author of articles and books, and a lecturer with extensive experience in corporate advisory. In her career, she has advised countless companies from the energy, new technologies, manufacturing, logistics and services sectors. She has previously been in high-profile head of legal roles in companies listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange. She has also managed regulatory risk from an in-house perspective, and supervised projects related to the implementation of regulations on personal data protection (RODO/GDPR), as well as led competition law proceedings.
Agnieszka is a lawyer with extensive knowledge in the field of corporate consulting and new technologies. She is an author of many books and articles on corporate governance, artificial intelligence and the venture capital market. On a daily basis, she advises a wide range of large and SME companies, including startups, both in terms of day-to-day operations and transactional issues.
The team also includes:
+ Bartłomiej Jankowski (Advocate, Senior Partner);
+ Rafał Stroiński (Advocate, Senior Partner);
+ Roman Iwański (Advocate, Partner);
+ Anna Cichońska (Advocate, Partner);
+ Aleksandra Polak (Advocate, Partner);
+ Piotr Leonarski (Advocate, Tax Advisor, Counsel);
+ Paulina Wyrostek (Attorney-at-Law, Counsel);
+ Paulina Milewska-Mróz (Advocate, Senior Lawyer);
+ Radosław Kowalski (Attorney-at-Law, Senior Lawyer).
B2RLaw advises on the sale of award-winning Gdynia office complex
B2RLaw has advised the sellers (a Dutch company and Polish companies) on the sale of Łużycka Office Park (buildings A, B, C and D) and Łużycka Plus, located in Gdynia. The new owner of the complex (represented by Linklaters) is a joint venture of the Czech retail investment fund INVESTIKA realitní fond and the Luxembourg private equity investor Bud Holdings.
All purchased properties are class A office buildings with a total area of 27,200 sq m. The complex is an excellent example of sustainable construction, located in the dynamically developing business center of Gdynia, in the immediate vicinity of the Pomeranian Metropolitan Railway (PKM), two fast urban railway (SKM) stops and the main communication artery of Gdynia, Sopot and Gdańsk. Thanks to this, access by car or PKM to the international airport takes only about 20 minutes. The area of the entire complex, including the car park, has been designed as an ‘urban garden’. Both projects have been awarded BREEAM and Building Without Barriers certification, as well as the Highly Commended Office Development Poland award won at the European Property Awards.
B2RLaw’s team was overseen by Rafał Zięba, advocate, Senior Partner; and led by Agnieszka Wojciechowska, Advocate, Counsel and included Filip Badziak, Counsel (advising on finance matters for the financing banks); Piotr Leonarski, Advocate, Tax Advisor, Counsel (tax law), Krysia Jakubowska, Advocate, Senior Associate (corporate law) and Dorota Gajuk, Junior Associate (corporate law).
Rafał Zięba advises, “The sale of the Łużycka complex is further proof of the investment resilience of regional office markets in Poland. It also demonstrates that office assets of the highest quality, with high-class tenants and which are professionally managed, will continue to enjoy interest and, consequently, generate transactions among key institutional investors. We congratulate the parties on this transaction and thank the sellers for entrusting us.”
B2RLaw advises SaaS-enabled B2B marketplace for the healthcare industry, Dentametr, on a pre-seed round with investors, which includes Octopus Ventures
B2RLaw has advised Dentametr and its founders on its pre-seed round capital raise with investors including leading investment fund Octopus Ventures, and a number of angel investors.
Dentametr is a SaaS-enabled B2B marketplace for the healthcare industry currently focusing on the dental services market in Poland. Its main product manages procurement of supplies, tools and equipment for dental clinics through a proprietary platform as well as optimizes their inventory management. The Company was founded by Mateusz Gawałkiewicz and Rafał Tuziak.
Octopus Ventures is a multi-stage European venture capital investor specializing in health, fintech, deep tech, B2B software and consumer. It is one of Europe’s largest and most active venture capital investors with offices in London and New York. Its specialist investment teams deploy more than GBP 200 million ever year, from Seed to Series B. Octopus Ventures is part of the Octopus Group.
As well as Octopus Ventures, a group of angel investors took part in the round, including a group of C-level executives in the healthcare industry, experienced entrepreneurs, lawyers, and management consultants.
Teresa Pilecka–Juda (Attorney-at-law, Senior Associate) provided advice to Dentametr, overseen by Rafał Stroiński (Advocate, Senior Partner).
Teresa advises, “It has been a pleasure to support the Dentametr team on this transaction, which has allowed this Polish company to obtain capital for its further growth. The fact that well-regarded international fund Octopus Ventures has invested into Dentametr is testament to the fact that the Company has an exciting future.”
B2RLaw joins the EU VAT Expert Group
On September 12, the European Commission: Directorate-General for Taxation and Customs Union published a list of members of the VAT Expert Group that will participate in the work of the EU institution over the next three years. B2RLaw is listed as one of the members.
B2RLaw is among 33 organizations appointed by the Directorate-General for Taxation and Customs Union as members in the VAT Expert Group. The task of the group of experts will be to advise the European Commission on legislative proposals and the interpretation of regulations. B2RLaw’s lawyers have been elected for a 3-year term, during which they will cooperate with representatives of companies such as Zalando, Procter & Gamble, Deloitte and KPMG.
”At B2RLaw, we believe that Poland’s place lies at the heart of the European Union, therefore, the very fact that our law firm has been selected means a great deal to us and is a fantastic honour. As lawyers, we are of the opinion that our role is to also help facilitate the creation of good and well-drafted European Union law, so that it also takes into account the perspective of the Polish economy and Polish businesses”, says Rafał Stroiński, advocate and senior partner at B2RLaw.
In the near future, the Commission plans to present further important legislative proposals in the field of VAT.
”They are to concern, in particular, harmonized electronic invoicing throughout the Union, taxation of a ”shared economy”, as well as changes crucial to the tourism and financial sectors. As B2RLaw, we want to substantially participate in the preparation of these changes, so that they respond to the needs and problems of Polish entrepreneurs as much as possible”, says Piotr Leonarski, attorney-at-law and tax advisor, Head of B2RLaw’s Tax Practice, who will be a representative of the VAT Expert Group.
Along with him, B2RLaw’s Tomasz Zaleski, an award-winning tax advisor, will also be among the EU advisors.
The VAT Expert Group was established in order to provide opinions and transfer specialist knowledge during work on regulations and during their implementation. The task of the expert group also includes providing detailed information on the practical implementation of EU legislation and other policy initiatives in the field of VAT. Moreover, the European Commission can consult the group on all matters related to the preparation and implementation of EU legislation and other policy initiatives taken at the EU level in the field of VAT.
B2RLaw advises early stage technology company The Village Network on financing received by a group of investors including Credo Ventures, 500 Startup and Tilia Impact Ventures
B2RLaw has once again advised The Village Network, the Polish company behind Wioski.co, which is run by three female entrepreneurs, on financing received by a group of investors, including Credo Ventures, 500 Startup and Tilia Impact Ventures. The start-up has just finalized a EUR 3.4 million seed round, allowing the company to open its first foreign villages.
The Village Network offers high-quality nurseries, kindergartens, day care centers and schools based on the values of intimacy parenting, non-violent communication and pedagogy that focuses on the needs of the child.
The mission of the organization is to support parents and educators in opening their own childcare points. It facilitates the co-creation of villages – places underpinned by the respect for children and their ideas. As a whole, these communities are changing the face of child education.
The Village is an SaaS enabled marketplace that reaches two target groups. It connects parents looking for professional care for their child, and persons who provide such care. This helps facilitate the process of mothers (fathers are also welcome to participate!) returning to work after maternity leave, whilst also creating new employment by, for example, professionalizing the services of nannies and childminders. It is the first such available comprehensive solution on the market of childcare and early childhood education on a European scale, and is in line with the global micro-schooling trend.
B2RLaw’s team was led by Agnieszka Hajos-Iwańska (Partner) and included Teresa Pilecka–Juda (Senior Associate) and Magdalena Zawiślak (Junior Associate).
Agnieszka Hajos-Iwańska advises, “we thank The Village Network for once again trusting us to advise on this exciting transaction. Our all-women team is extremely proud to have supported three female entrepreneurs that are changing the face of the child care and education market, and we wish them well on their further journey in doing so”.
B2RLaw advises early stage technology company The Village Network on financing received by Movens Capital
B2RLaw advises Johnson Matthey Plc on GBP 50 million sale of its Battery Materials business
B2RLaw has advised Johnson Matthey Plc, a global leader in sustainable technologies, on all Polish aspects of its multijurisdictional sale of part of its Battery Materials business to EV Metals Group, a global battery chemicals and technology business.
The sale includes Johnson Matthey’s assets at the Battery Technology Centre in Oxford and pilot plant in Billingham, and a research centre in Moosburg, Germany.
The Polish assets relate to a partly constructed battery manufacturing plant sited on a 43 hectare plot in Konin.
The transaction is expected to complete in Summer 2022. As a result of the transaction Johnson Matthey will also receive a minority equity stake in EV Metals Group.
B2RLaw’s team was overseen by Senior Partner Rafał Zięba and led by Partner Aleksandra Polak; and included Counsel Agnieszka Wojciechowska, Associate Krystyna Jakubowska and Junior Associate Michał Blados.
Its been a pleasure to have advised long-term client Johnson Matthey on this important strategic disposal and to have worked closely with the Johnson Matthey team and all stakeholders involved. This important divestment allows the group to focus on its core portfolio and its objective to add value and help accelerate societal progress towards net zero. Whilst this divestment involves some Polish assets, Johnson Matthey remains a large investor and employer in Poland through its Emission Control and Battery Systems business lines based in Gliwice – Rafał Zięba advises.
B2RLaw commits to Greener Litigation
With a leading, and one of the largest disputes practices in Poland, B2RLaw is the first Polish law firm to sign-up to the Greener Litigation Pledge.
By signing the pledge B2R commits to taking active steps to reduce the environmental impact of our Disputes Practice, and to the reduction of our emissions in line with the objective of restricting global warming to 1.5°C. As such, the objective is to, among others:
+ Promote, in the Polish industry, the use of correspondence electronically;
+ Encouraging the limitation of printing of hard copy court bundles and other documents wherever possible;
+ Walking, cycling or using public transport for journeys to court wherever feasible and appropriate;
+ Advocating for the appropriateness of witnesses giving evidence by video-link; and
+ Whilst acknowledging the importance of in-person hearings to the administration of justice, actively considering for each hearing whether it is appropriate and amenable to being heard remotely, in whole or in part, including by telephone or by video-link, and furthering its use in the Polish legal system.
Inspired by the Campaign for Greener Arbitrations and its founder Lucy Greenwood and pursuant to its Climate Change Strategy, UK law firm Mishcon de Reya convened a group of like-minded leading UK and international litigation practices to develop the Greener Litigation Pledge: a mission statement setting out practical changes that litigators pledge to commit to in the journey towards net zero. The founding members includes law firms Mishcon de Reya, Freshfields, Kennedys, Simmons & Simmons, HFW, Addleshaw Goddard, Herbert Smith Freehills, as well as barristers chambers Fountain Court and 3 Hare Court.
B2RLaw Disputes Partner Edyta Zalewska advises, ”B2RLaw houses one of the largest disputes practices in Poland with just over 30 lawyers dedicated to advising on various contentious matters ranging from corporate disputes to white collar crime. As such, B2R handles a large amount of cases. Through our commitment to ESG, by not only advising clients on ESG implementation, but through us as a firm being fully committed and actually practicing ESG policies and procedures, it was only natural for B2RLaw to sign and engage in the Greener Litigation Pledge. Moreover, B2RLaw’s team has agreed with our UK counterparts to bring and lead the Greener Litigation campaign to Poland by establishing ‘Greener Litigation Poland’ and encouraging our colleagues and peers to also commit to the cause and helping to facilitate systematic change to the Polish legal system which would create a greener environment”.
Alex Rhodes, Head of Purpose at Mishcon de Reya, the London firm that founded and launched the Greener Litigation Pledge says: ”We are delighted that B2R has signed the Greener Litigation Pledge and is leading the way in Poland. We hope that many firms in Poland and other jurisdictions will follow B2R in signing the Greener Litigation Pledge and working to reduce the environmental footprint of their litigation practices”.
For those that would like to sign the Greener Litigation Pledge, have a question, or would be interested in participating in future Greener Litigation initiatives, we would be pleased to hear from you.
More details can be found at: www.greenerlitigation.org
B2RLaw advises Partners for Growth on multi-million USD international Venture Debt transaction
B2RLaw acted as Polish legal counsel to Partners for Growth (PFG) on its cross-border USD 25 million Venture Debt financing to e-commerce company Opontia.
Partners for Growth is a San Francisco Bay Area-based global credit fund, with over $1.3 billion dollars of committed financing since inception. The firm was founded in 2004 by the former managers of San Francisco investment bank Hambrecht & Quist’s venture lending business. PFG provides financing for venture and non-venture backed companies across the globe. The firm maintains a close strategic partnership with Silicon Valley Bank, the leading commercial bank focused on the innovation economy globally.
Opontia is an e-commerce company founded in February 2021 by Philip Johnston and Manfred Meyer. Opontia buys and grows e-commerce brands in the CEEMEA (Central & Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and Africa). It is considered one of the first companies in the Middle East to raise Venture Debt. In October 2021 it opened an office in Poland.
This transaction was part of a USD 42 million Series A round led by STV (the largest Venture Capital fund in the Middle East and North Africa), making it the only newcomer in 2021 to be featured in the Forbes Middle East’s 50 Most-Funded Startups being ranked 12th.
B2RLaw advised Partners for Growth on the Loan Agreement as well as drafting and negotiating the Polish security documents (including, inter alia, Share Pledge Agreements, Bank Account Pledge Agreements, Enterprise Pledge Agreements, Security Assignments and Submissions to Enforcement).
B2RLaw’s team was led by Partner George Havaris and Counsel Filip Badziak, and included Senior Associate Radoslaw Minh Nguyen, Associate Julia Pycka and Junior Associate Maria Markowska.
We congratulate Partners for Growth, Opontia and all other parties involved in this transaction. This deal is further testament to the fact that B2RLaw’s finance team is the preeminent leader in Poland and the wider CEE with respect to advising on Venture Debt transactions. Our team has advised on Venture Debt transactions involving Polish-founded technology companies, including the first Polish unicorn, DocPlanner. The global Venture Debt market has boomed, with VC-backed companies taking on more than USD 80 billion in loans and other debt products over the past three years. Venture Debt is growing faster than the broader VC market, reaching a record value of USD 28.2 billion in 2019 and nearly matching that in 2020. B2RLaw has taken an active role in promoting Venture Debt in Poland, by connecting prominent international Venture Debt providers with Polish founded technology companies – George Havaris advises.
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