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European Tax Awards' winners unveiled

22 May 2014

ITR Correspondent

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The winners of the European Tax Awards 2014 were announced at a dinner in London on May 21.

Alcoa’s European tax team (below) was out in force to collect the award as in-house team of the year at International Tax Review’s European Tax Awards 2014.

The US multinational metals company fought off strong competition for the prize from Dassault Systèmes, Immofinanz and Vodafone, the other nominees in the category.

The criteria for the in-house award were based on the objectives of each tax department for the 2013 calendar year and how they were achieved. In its submission, the Alcoa team described its tax operations, which are based on monitoring, counselling, advocacy and processes.

Scroll down to find out who won the other awards.

Apart from the in-house award, the European Tax Awards recognised examples of superior local and regional tax advice in cross-border transactions. South Africa is also included in these awards. There were national tax firm of the year winners in 27 countries and national transfer pricing winners in 25, Cyprus and Malta being the exceptions.

The European tax firm of the year was the Best Friends Network, an alliance of independent firms comprising Bonelli Erede Pappalardo, Bredin Prat, De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek, Hengeler Mueller, Slaughter and May, and UrÍa Menéndez.

As well as for tax, the regional awards included those for transfer pricing, tax disputes and indirect tax. In an innovation this year, deal of the year awards in 11 separate categories were also presented, where any firm that worked on any of the tax aspects of the winning transaction received an award. This was a recognition that often the success of a matter depends on the contribution many different tax specialists, rather than merely one firm on one side of it and another on the other.

WINNERS AND SHORTLISTS (Winners in bold)

AUSTRIA TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

BPV Huegel
Deloitte
DLA Piper
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
WOLF THEISS

AUSTRIA TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Baker & McKenzie
DELOITTE
LeitnerLeitner

BALTIC STATES TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
SORAINEN
Raidla Lejins & Norcous
Varul

BALTIC STATES TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

DELOITTE
Sorainen
Varul

BELGIUM TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
DLA Piper
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Liedekerke
LOYENS & LOEFF
Mayer Brown
Stibbe

BELGIUM TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

DELOITTE
Mayer Brown
PwC

CENTRAL EUROPEAN TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Baker & McKenzie
DELOITTE
EY
PwC Romania
Taxhouse, Taxand Romania
White & Case

CENTRAL EUROPEAN TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
EY
PwC
Taxhouse, Taxand Romania

CYPRUS TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Avanzia, Taxand Cyprus
DELOITTE
EY

DENMARK TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Horten
PLESNER

DENMARK TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Bech-Bruun, Taxand Denmark
EY
PLESNER

FINLAND TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Alder & Sound
Borenius, Taxand Finland
EY
Roschier

FINLAND TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Alder & Sound
Borenius, Taxand Finland
Deloitte
EY

FRANCE TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Arsene Taxand France
August & Debouzy
Baker & McKenzie
Bredin Prat
DLA Piper
EY
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Hogan Lovells
Mayer Brown
Taj

FRANCE TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Arsene Taxand France
EY
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Mayer Brown

GERMANY TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Allen & Overy
Baker & McKenzie
DLA Piper
Flick Gocke Schaumburg
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
HENGELER MUELLER
Hogan Lovells
Latham & Watkins
Oppenhoff & Partner

GERMANY TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Baker & McKenzie
Deloitte
FLICK GOCKE SCHAUMBURG
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Oppenhoff & Partner

GREECE TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
EY
Koutalidis

GREECE TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
EY
Zepos & Yannopoulos, Taxand Greece

HUNGARY TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
DLA Piper
EY
Kinstellar
Orientax

HUNGARY TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
EY
Taxperience Tandax

IRELAND TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

A&L GOODBODY
Arthur Cox
Deloitte
Maples & Calder
Matheson
William Fry Tax Advisors, Taxand Ireland

IRELAND TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
EY
Matheson

ITALY TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Allen & Overy
Baker & McKenzie
Bonelli Erede Pappalardo
Clifford Chance
Deloitte
DLA Piper
EY
Hogan Lovells
LEGANCE
NCTM

ITALY TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

BONELLI EREDE PAPPALARDO
Deloitte
EY
Valente GEB Partners

LUXEMBOURG TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Allen & Overy
Arendt & Medernach
Atoz, Taxand Luxembourg
Deloitte
DLA Piper
EY
Loyens & Loeff
Stibbe

LUXEMBOURG TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Atoz, Taxand Luxembourg
DELOITTE
Loyens & Loeff

MALTA TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Avanzia, Taxand Malta
Camilleri Preziosi
DELOITTE
KPMG

NETHERLANDS TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Allen & Overy
Baker & McKenzie
Deloitte
DLA Piper
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
LOYENS & LOEFF
Stibbe
Van Campen Liem

NETHERLANDS TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Altus Alliance
BAKER & MCKENZIE
Deloitte
DLA Piper

NORWAY TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
DLA Piper
EY
PwC

NORWAY TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
EY
PwC

POLAND TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

BAKER & MCKENZIE
Crido, Taxand Poland
Deloitte
DLA Piper
EY
Greenberg Traurig
Hogan Lovells
MDDP
Wardynski & Partners

POLAND TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

DELOITTE
DLA Piper
EY
MDDP

PORTUGAL TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Baker Tilly
Cuatrecasas Goncalves Pereira
EY
Garrigues Taxand Portugal
Linklaters
PLMJ
PwC
RFF & Associados
Uría Menéndez
Vieira de Almeida

PORTUGAL TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

BAKER TILLY
EY
PwC

RUSSIA TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

BAKER & McKENZIE
Deloitte
DLA Piper
EY
Goltsblat BLP
KPMG
Pepeliaev Group, Taxand Russia
PwC

RUSSIA TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

BAKER & McKENZIE
Deloitte
EY
Pepeliaev Group, Taxand Russia
PwC

SOUTH AFRICA TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

ENS, TAXAND SOUTH AFRICA
Werksmans

SOUTH AFRICA TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
ENS, TAXAND SOUTH AFRICA
EY

SPAIN TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Ashurst
Baker & McKenzie
Cuatrecasas Goncalves Pereira
DELOITTE
DLA Piper
EY
Garrigues Taxand Spain
Hogan Lovells
Latham & Watkins
Linklaters
Uría Menéndez

SPAIN TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

BAKER & McKENZIE
Deloitte
EY
Garrigues Taxand Spain

SWEDEN TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
EY
ROSCHIER

SWEDEN TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

EY
DELOITTE
Grant Thornton

SWITZERLAND TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

DELOITTE
EY
Lenz & Staehelin
Schellenberg Wittmer
Tax Partner, Taxand Switzerland

SWITZERLAND TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

DELOITTE
EY

TURKEY TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

DELOITTE
DLA Piper
Pekin & Pekin

TURKEY TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
EY
PEKIN & PEKIN

UK TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Alvarez & Marsal Taxand UK
Baker & McKenzie
EY
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Hogan Lovells
Latham & Watkins
Shearman & Sterling
Simmons & Simmons
SLAUGHTER AND MAY
Sullivan & Cromwell
Weil Gotshal & Manges

UK TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

EY
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
GRANT THORNTON

UKRAINE TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Avellum Partners
Deloitte
DLA Piper
EY
KPMG
Sayenko Kharenko
VASIL KISIL & PARTNERS

UKRAINE TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Avellum Partners
DLA Piper
EY
KPMG

EUROPEAN REGIONAL AWARDS SHORTLISTS

EUROPEAN TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Allen & Overy
Baker & McKenzie
BEST FRIENDS NETWORK
Deloitte
DLA Piper
EY
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Hogan Lovells
Latham & Watkins
Taxand

EUROPEAN TRANSFER PRICING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
DLA Piper
EY
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
NERA
TAXAND

EUROPEAN TAX DISPUTES FIRM OF THE YEAR

DLA PIPER
EY
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Herbert Smith Freehills
Joseph Hage Aaronson
PwC Turkey
Weil Gotshal & Manges

EUROPEAN INDIRECT TAX FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
DLA Piper
EY's EMEIA Financial Services Indirect Tax Practice
KÜFFNER MAUNZ LANGER ZUGMAIER
Ryan
Taxand

EUROPEAN TAX COMPLIANCE & REPORTING FIRM OF THE YEAR

Deloitte
EY

EUROPEAN IN-HOUSE TEAM OF THE YEAR - DIRECT TAX

ALCOA
Dassault Systèmes
Immofinanz
Vodafone

EUROPEAN BANKING TAX DEAL OF THE YEAR

ETCHEVERRÍA BANESCO BANK GROUP ACQUISITION OF NCG BANCO
Clifford Chance, Deloitte Spain, PwC,

Acquisition of Bank Gospodarki Zywnosciowej by BNP ParibaS
Allen & Overy, Deloitte Poland, Greenberg Traurig, Taj

Disposal of about 6% of Lloyd's Banking Group
Slaughter and May

Merger of Barclays' and ABSA's African banking operations
EY; Norton Rose Fulbright; Webber Wentzel in alliance with Linklaters

EUROPEAN CAPITAL MARKETS TAX DEAL OF THE YEAR

Acquisition of crude oil from Rosneft
Arthur Cox; Linklaters

Energa IPO
Greenberg Traurig; Allen & Overy

€150 million treasury shares equity swap for the Immofinanz Group
bpv Hügel; Linklaters

Yandex secondary offering of shares & issuance of convertible notes
Davis Polk & Wardwell; Van Doorne

Salini bond
Bonelli Erede Pappalardo, Linklaters, White & Case

£3bn refinancing solution for the AA group
Arthur Cox, Clifford Chance, Eversheds, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

FINANCING OF THE PURCHASE OF ALTAMIRA, BANCO SANTANDER'S REAL ESTATE DIVISION, BY AN AFFILIATE OF APOLLO GLOBAL MANAGEMENT
Latham & Watkins Spain, Linklaters, Uría Menéndez

EUROPEAN CONSUMER PRODUCTS TAX DEAL OF THE YEAR

JOH. A. BENCKISER/ QUADRANT CAPITAL ADVISORS'S ACQUISITION OF DE MASTER BLENDERS 1753
EY; Skadden Arps, Slate Meagher & Flom; Stibbe

Penguin Random House joint venture
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Slaughter and May

Disposal of the Printemps group by Borletti Group and Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management to Divine Investments
Baker & McKenzie; Bird & Bird; Darrois Villey Maillot Brochier; Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer; King & Spalding; Willkie Farr & Gallagher

LVMH acquisition of Loro Piana
Bonelli Erede Pappalardo; Chiomenti Studio Legale

EUROPEAN M&A TAX DEAL OF THE YEAR

KODAK PENSION PLAN'S ACQUISITION OF EASTMAN KODAK'S PERSONALISED IMAGING AND DOCUMENT IMAGING BUSINESSES
Hogan Lovells; Sullivan & Cromwell

Vodafone's $13 billion acquisition of Kabel Deutschland
EY

Actavis's acquisition of Warner Chilcott
Arthur Cox; Latham & Watkins; Matheson

Gold One / Sibanye Gold merger of strategic assets
ENS Taxand South Africa; PwC Cyprus

Consolidation by Cyfrowy Polsat of TMT assets held by its largest shareholder
Greenberg Traurig

Chromaflo Technologies / CPS Color merger
DLA Piper; EY

Otto Group's acquisition of the BtoB and BtoC e-commerce activities of 3 Suisses International
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer; Linklaters

Scor's acquisition of 59.9% of MRM
DLA Piper; Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom

Sale of Maisons du Monde Groupe
Arsene Taxand France; Landwell

EUROPEAN FINANCIAL SERVICES TAX DEAL OF THE YEAR

Eurolot's acquisition of Bombardier aircraft
Hogan Lovells

ANDBANK TAKE-OVER OF INVERSIS'S PRIVATE RETAIL BANKING BUSINESS
Deloitte Spain

Advice to banks and industry associations on French and Italian financial transaction taxes
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer; Simmons & Simmons

EUROPEAN ENERGY TAX DEAL OF THE YEAR

SITA Zielona Energia / Suez Environnement Warsaw waste management PPP
Hogan Lovells

PRODUCTION SHARING AGREEMENT FOR RUSSIAN MINISTRY OF ENERGY TO DEVELOP THE KHVALYNSKOYE DEPOSIT THAT ESTABLISHES A SPECIAL TAXATION REGIME FOR INVESTORS
Pepeliaev Group, Taxand Russia

BTG Pactual's acquisition of a 50% stake in Petrobras' investments in Angola, Benin, Gabon, Namibia, Nigeria and Tanzania
Herbert Smith Freehills; Stibbe

Qatar Petroleum International's acquisition of a 60% operating share in natural gas assets from Suncor Energy
Stibbe

Preferential energy tax treatment of energy product manufacturers
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

SunEdison's acquisition of UK solar projects
Linklaters; Simmons & Simmons

EUROPEAN MEDIA & ENTERTAINMENT TAX DEAL OF THE YEAR

Cairo Communications's acquisition of LA7
Bonelli Erede Pappalardo

DISCOVERY COMMUNICATIONS'S ACQUISITION OF THE SBS NORDIC GROUP FROM THE PROSIEBENSAT.1 GROUP
DLA Piper; Horten; Borenius Taxand Finland; Mason Hayes & Curran; Milbank

Rank Group's acquisition of Gala Coral's casino business
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

Liberty Global's acquisition of Virgin Media
Latham & Watkins; Milbank; Ropes & Gray

BC Partners's acquisition of Springer Science + Business Media from EQT Partners and GIC
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer; Hengeler Mueller; P+P Pollath + Partners

EUROPEAN PRIVATE EQUITY TAX DEAL OF THE YEAR

Advent International acquisition of Cytec's coating business
EY; Weil Gotshal & Manges

Merger of Polski Bank Przedsiebiorczosci SA and FM Bank within Abris Capital Group
Greenberg Traurig

Bridgepoint's acquisition of the Flexitallic Group from Eurazeo PME
DLA Piper

CINVEN AND BCV INVESTMENTS ON THE SALE OF AVIO'S CIVIL AND MILITARY AIRCRAFT AVIATION PROPULSION COMPONENTS AND SYSTEMS BUSINESS TO NUOVO PIGNONE
Chiomenti Studio Legale; Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer; Shearman & Sterling

Elis's LBO debt restructuring
Mayer Brown; Kirkland & Ellis; Latham & Watkins

Averys Group's acquisition of the Stow Group and of its debt and equity refinancing
Gide Loyrette Nouel; Mayer Brown

EUROPEAN TAX RESTRUCTURING DEAL OF THE YEAR

Intercell-Vivalis cross-border merger
bpv Hügel; EY; Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer; Hogan Lovells

Reverse merger of Polkomtel and Spartan Capital Holdings
EY; Greenberg Traurig; Latham & Watkins; MDDP

SAUR RESTRUCTURING
Allen & Overy; Clifford Chance; Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

Hypothekenbank Frankfurt
DLA Piper

Consolis debt and equity restructuring
Arntzen de Besche; Mayer Brown; Roschier; Taxperience

EUROPEAN JOINT VENTURE TAX DEAL OF THE YEAR

Amendments to existing joint ventures in Poland between Aviva and BZ WBK and the extension of he associated bancassurance arrangements between the JVCOs and BZ WBK
Hogan Lovells

EULER HERMES / MAPFRE CREDIT INSURANCE JOINT VENTURE
Hogan Lovells

APG's joint venture with Grainger to acquire a $574 million real estate portfolio
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer; Simmons & Simmons

EUROPEAN TELECOMMUNICATIONS AND TECHNOLOGY TAX DEAL OF THE YEAR

Globe Telecom's establishment of Italian activities
Bonelli Erede Pappalardo

Telefónica's investment in Telecom Italia
Clifford Chance

VODAFONE'S $130 BILLION DISPOSAL OF ITS JOINT VENTURE INTEREST IN VERIZON WIRELESS
Arthur Cox; De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek; EY; Slaughter and May

Dexia Group's sale of its IT subsidiary Dexia Technology Services (DTS) to IBM
Arendt & Medernach; EY; Linklaters; Loyens & Loeff; Stibbe

ECJ FIRM OF THE YEAR - DIRECT TAX

Cuatrecasas, Gonçalves Pereira - Itelcar
Hannes Snellman - P Oy
JOSEPH HAGE AARONSON - FRANKED INVESTMENT INCOME GROUP LITIGATION
Lydian - RVS Levensverzekeringen
Monard-D'Hulst - Gimle
Tiberghien - Argenta Spaarbank

ECJ FIRM OF THE YEAR - INDIRECT TAX

KPMG MEIJBURG & CO - PPG HOLDINGS
GfBk Gesellschaft für Börsenkommunikation
PwC Poland - BGZ Leasing

US TAX FIRM IN EUROPE

DLA PIPER
KPMG's US tax practice in Europe
Latham & Watkins
Shearman & Sterling
Weil Gotshal & Manges

BEST NEWCOMER

Avellum Partners
Goltsblat BLP
GREENBERG TRAURIG'S POLISH TAX PRACTICE
Joseph Hage Aaronson
Maples & Calder's Irish tax practice
Orientax
Van Campen Liem

EUROPEAN TAX POLICY FIRM OF THE YEAR

BEST FRIENDS NETWORK
Deloitte
EY
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

EUROPEAN TAX INNOVATOR OF THE YEAR

Alder & Sound
KPMG Ukraine
RYAN
Taxand

EUROPEAN CLIENT CONNECTION AWARD

Alder & Sound
Deloitte (Austria, Belgium, Luxembourg and Poland)
EY
RSM DTM Hungary
Simmons & Simmons

Methodology
Between December 2013 and February 2014, International Tax Review asked law firms, tax advisers, accountants and other tax service providers from these jurisdictions:

Austria; Baltic States (Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania); Belgium; Central and Eastern Europe (Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Romania, Slovak Republic and Slovenia); Cyprus; Denmark; Finland; France; Germany; Greece; Hungary; Ireland; Italy; Malta; Netherlands; Norway; Poland; Portugal; Russia; South Africa; Spain; Sweden; Switzerland; Turkey; UK; Ukraine

to submit three examples of their best work for consideration for the national tax and transfer pricing awards, as well as for the innovation category, and the ECJ awards. The regional awards and additional prizes for the best tax advice offered in Europe in transactions covering banking, capital markets, consumer products, energy, financial services, joint ventures, media and entertainment, M&A, private equity, restructuring, telecommunications and technology, and for US tax firm in Europe, tax compliance and reporting, and tax policy firm were judged from these submissions. Taxpayers could also make a submission for best in-house tax team of the year.

International Tax Review’s editorial staff researched these submissions with private practitioners and in-house tax managers to compile shortlists and choose winners for each of the country and regional awards.

The awards were judged according to:

  • Size (Not conclusive, though it does indicate what a tax team is capable of taking on)
  • Innovation (Did the advice the firm gave show something more than the straightforward answer that is commonly used?)
  • Complexity (Did the matter address tax issues that were out of the ordinary and what ingenuity did the firm show to solve them?)

These awards represent the opinions of the magazine on the leading tax advisers in Europe and South Africa based on their work in 2013.






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