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05-Dec-2022
Walkers Global Fintech Group Attains Chambers Band 1 Rankings Again

The Cayman Islands and Bermuda offices of international law firm Walkers have received Band 1 rankings in the third annual Chambers and Partners fintech directory.

With Chambers changing its "Offshore Fintech" section into standalone jurisdictions this year, Walkers' Cayman Islands, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Ireland, and Jersey offices are all included in the 2023 rankings for fintech legal services.

Walkers formally formed its Global Fintech Group in 2017, though it has been supporting financial technology clients for many years in what is believed to be the longest established fintech practice advising on offshore jurisdictions. The firm has fintech specialists across its 10 offices spanning the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

Four Walkers lawyers are ranked in the guide. Cayman Islands partner Melissa Lim receives a Band 1 lawyer ranking for her practice for the second consecutive year, and fellow Cayman partner Lucy Frew is also ranked. Bermuda partner Natalie Neto receives a Band 1 lawyer ranking and Ireland partner Niall Esler is ranked in the guide for his work in the Irish fintech market. Group Partner Dilmun Leach was recognised as a key contact for the ranked team in Jersey.

 

Melissa Lim, Cayman Islands partner and co-head of the Global Fintech Group, celebrated the rankings. She stated: "We are delighted to retain our Band 1 ranking yet again in this year's iteration of the Chambers and Partners Fintech Guide. Across the globe, Walkers represents some of the brightest minds in the sector, each of whom offer a breadth of knowledge and expertise. This year we have demonstrated path finding innovation and look ahead to 2023 and the opportunities ahead."

Walkers' Global Fintech Group is diverse in both the make-up of the team and in the type of Fintech work it does and the clients it represents. The market-leading team is an integral member of the Blockchain Association of the Cayman Islands, the Cayman Islands Fintech legislative drafting committee, the Bermuda Business Development Agency's Technology Sub-committee, the Jersey Digital Assets Working Group and other governmental steering groups in the Channel Islands, Bermuda and the BVI.

Walkers' unique vantage point allows it to combine industry experience in Fintech's core sectors with a specialist legal expertise, to create an offshore market-leading Fintech team. With experts from Asia, the Americas, Europe and the Middle East, Walkers understands that innovative businesses think beyond borders.

Natalie Neto, Bermuda partner and co-head of the Global Fintech Group, noted: "We are elated to receive Band 1 rankings for the second year in a row in the Chambers and Partners Fintech Guide. This demonstrates the tight coordination and knowledge share across the Americas."

Dilmun Leach, group partner in Walkers' Jersey Investment Funds & Corporate group, added: "We are delighted to receive a Band 2 ranking in the first Jersey Fintech Guide. The rankings for the Walkers' team demonstrate how strong our international practice is – this is an area that sees frequent collaboration between our jurisdictions of law and offices, and that is part of our offering that resonates with clients seeking a jurisdiction-agnostic approach from advisers."

Niall Esler, partner and head of Walkers' Ireland Regulatory and Risk Advisory group, said: "We are very pleased to have retained our rankings for this practice area – and particularly to have been praised in the quotes cited by the Chambers researchers for quick turnarounds and clear understanding of effective presentation of the legal and regulatory environment."



22-Nov-2022
Walkers BVI Acts on ESG Bond Deal of the Year

Walkers' British Virgin Islands ("BVI") office is delighted to have acted as BVI counsel on the "ESG Bond Deal of the Year", awarded at the Bonds & Loans Latin America & Caribbean Awards 2022.

Walkers' BVI office acted as BVI counsel to The Central America Bottling Corporation in relation to its US$1.1 billion Sustainability-Linked Bond ("SLB") offering. The offering is the first US dollar-denominated SLB by a bottling company in the Americas region, as well as being the first SLB by a Central American issuer, and the second largest single tranche SLB by a Latin American issuer ever.

Walkers was led by BVI Managing Partner Matthew Cowman, with support from partner Omonike Robinson-Pickering.  Matthew Cowman said "Walkers was delighted to support The Central America Bottling Corporation on this landmark deal, which highlights both our leading Latin America practice as well as the important role BVI plays in finance markets generally."

Since 2015, the Bonds & Loans Awards have been recognising the year’s most innovative and ground-breaking deals from Sovereign, Corporate and Financial Institution issuers and borrowers.

22-Nov-2022
Walkers wins four titles at Who's Who Legal Awards 2022

Walkers, the international law firm, has won four titles at the prestigious Who's Who Legal Awards 2022, which recognise the world's leading law firms across a range of practice areas and jurisdictions.

Competing against a field of all top tier international law firms, Walkers won three practice area titles and Cayman Islands Law Firm of the Year in the country and state categories.

Walkers was named Asset Recovery Law Firm of the Year and Restructuring & Insolvency Law Firm of the Year, both for the second year running, and Best Commercial Litigation Firm for the first time.

These titles reinforce Walker's reputation as the premier global restructuring, insolvency and corporate recovery practice advising on offshore jurisdictions. The firm's dedicated teams in each of its 10 offices across the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Middle East, offer Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Guernsey, Irish and Jersey legal advice on all aspects of restructuring, insolvency, corporate recovery, litigation and dispute resolution.

Walkers' Insolvency & Dispute Resolution Group partner Neil Lupton commented: "I am delighted that we have retained our Asset Recovery and Restructuring and Insolvency awards and added the Best Commercial Litigation Firm accolade. Our talented international team of lawyers across our 10 offices work hard for our clients every single day. We are proud that clients trust our ability to advise them on their most complex, ground breaking, cross-border cases involving offshore jurisdictions."

Commenting on the Cayman Islands Firm of the Year title, Walkers' Managing Partner for the Cayman Islands, Tim Buckley, added: "This award is welcome recognition of the commitment of all of our people to providing outstanding advice and client service. We will continue to focus on assisting our clients successfully navigate their biggest challenges and take advantage of opportunities across the market."

 

H WONG WWL Awards 2022

London partner Hughie Wong collects the trophy for Best Cayman Islands Law Firm


The Who's Who Legal Awards 2022 winners were announced at a ceremony at Plaisterers’ Hall in London in front of an audience of 200 guests representing top law firms and consulting firms from across the world. The winners were determined on a range of factors, including feedback received from clients and peers in the research process, breadth and depth of practice area and geographical capability, and the number and proportion of individuals selected as Who's Who Legal Thought Leaders. 



18-Nov-2022
Will Policy Makers Stifle The Dao Revolution

DAOs, a new form of the online decentralized organization, have shown massive growth over the past two years, with more than 10,000 DAOs and billions of crypto assets held in DAO treasuries. They are increasingly important in the context of crypto-token networks, and many DAOs hold significant assets, but their legal and regulatory status is unclear.

 

Click to view article

 

First published in Amplify (November 2022). Amplify is published monthly by Cutter Consortium, an Arthur D. Little community.



18-Nov-2022
Walkers Banking Specialist Graduates as Dr Tiny Musesengwa

Banking and finance lawyer Tiny Musesengwa has successfully completed her Doctor of Laws (LLD) degree and graduated with the University of South Africa.

Dr Tiny Musesengwa, an Associate in Walkers' growing Banking & Finance Practice Group in Guernsey, attended her graduation ceremony in Cape Town on Friday 11 November 2022 and her thesis was titled “Unconscionability and a breach of a negative stipulation in the underlying contract as exceptions to the autonomy principle of demand guarantees in South Africa”.

Tiny has been working in Guernsey in private practice and in-house roles since 2016 and advises on all aspects of banking and finance law, including real estate finance, fund finance, restructuring and distressed finance transactions. She also has experience in and advises on a wide variety of financial services regulatory, compliance and risk management advisory law matters.

Group Partner Kim Paiva who leads Walkers’ Banking & Finance Practice Group alongside Group Partner Zoë Hallam, said: “Completing a Doctorate of Laws degree is a massive accomplishment that demands commitment, dedication, a lot of hard work and skill. We are all thrilled by Tiny’s achievement.”

Tiny said: “I am very pleased to have completed this journey and graduated as Dr Tiny Musesengwa. I would like to thank everyone who supported and encouraged me including my banking and finance colleagues and the wider Walkers team. I am looking forward to my next challenge, whatever that may be!"

The firm recently moved to new, larger premises in Guernsey after strategic growth in the team saw headcount almost treble over four years.

Walkers is the largest offshore law firm and also has offices in Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, Cay-man, Dubai, Dublin, Jersey, Hong Kong, London and Singapore.

17-Nov-2022
Aongus McCarthy Joins Walkers’ Ireland Asset Management and Investment Funds Team as Partner

Aongus McCarthy has joined Walkers as a Partner in the Asset Management and Investment Funds Practice Group in Ireland.

Aongus, who previously led the Investment Funds team of an international law firm, and advises domestic and international asset managers on the structuring, establishment and operation of investment funds under Irish law, across the entire life cycle of the fund.

His practice focuses on UCITS, retail investor alternative investment funds (RIAIFs) and qualifying investor alternative investment funds (QIAlFs) covering all types of strategies and asset classes, including debt, credit, real estate and private equity strategies.

Nicholas Blake-Knox, Partner and Head of Asset Management and Investment Funds at Walkers in Ireland said "We are delighted to welcome Aongus to our Tier 1 rated team here at Walkers – his extensive experience across a wide range of asset management and investment fund matters makes him a perfect fit for our growing team.

"Our Asset Management and Investment Funds Practice Group works closely with our Regulatory, Tax, Corporate, Finance & Capital Markets and Employment practice groups, and Aongus' will add much-needed experience, expertise and bandwidth to our busy teams."

Aongus also advises on the establishment and operation of UCITS management companies and alternative investment fund managers and also has experience in various aspects of corporate governance, distribution and regulatory compliance matters.

With more than 140 staff in Ireland and more than 1,100 colleagues globally, Walkers is the largest offshore law firm with a global offering across all time zones. Across our ten offices, we advise on the laws of Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Guernsey, Ireland and Jersey. Complementing our legal offering, Walkers Professional Services offers corporate, corporate governance, regulatory compliance and fiduciary services.