Blog Archives

Maria Cristina Pantoja

Maria Cristina Pantoja has been working at Bichara e Motta Advogados since 2015 as a partner of the corporate and business department with her team. Born in Rio de Janeiro, she holds a law degree from the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (PUC/RJ) and has over 15 years of experience in business law, that encompasses corporate law, financial market, real estate, contracts in general and also inheritance planning.

She has worked for many years for two of the largest corporate law firms nationwide, in Rio de Janeiro and in Sao Paulo. Maria Cristina Pantoja has extensive experience in international negotiations, from the formation and structuring corporations in Brazil and abroad, national and international financing, and even the construction of ships, EPC contracts, international service contract, etc.

The Business & Contract Law Practice:

Bichara e Motta Advogados provides legal advice in all aspects of business law, especially in the corporate, contract, commercial and compliance areas.

Experience, efficiency and objectivity together with a careful analysis of the risks involved contribute to the success of the services provided to our clients.

The firm offers the following services, among others, in the business field:

  • consulting, negotiating and closing of local or international contracts, including supply, distribution, commercial representation, provision of services, loans and guarantees, factoring and franchising, turn key contracts, among others;
  • advising on the purchase and sale of equity interests, assets and commercial establishments; incorporation and liquidation of corporations and limited liability companies;
  • monitoring corporate activities and routines, shareholder meetings, board of directors’ meetings, organization of corporate books, etc.;
  • planning and implementing corporate reorganizations, including negotiation of shareholders’ agreements, acquisitions, spin-offs, mergers, joint ventures, consortia, incorporation of shares, conversion of shares, transformation of corporate format, liquidation, divestments and other business deals and management duties;
  • estate and/or family planning;
  • real estate property contracts;
  • representing clients before state and federal regulatory agencies on contracts with the Public Administration, advising them on public bids and administrative and judicial processes related to issues of Administrative Law; and
  • compliance.
  • Our client portfolio is diverse and includes private equity funds and companies of large, medium and small sizes, as well as individuals (athletes, celebrities and others). Among our corporate clients, we highlight those who work in the areas of navigation and in the oil and gas sector, salt producers and food distributors.

Bichara e Motta Advogados:

Bichara e Motta Advogados was the first firm in Latin America to create a team dedicated exclusively to Sports and Entertainment Law and is still known as a highly specialized firm focused on its clients’ satisfaction.

Acting in these innovative areas of law, also with an emphasis in the audiovisual, fashion, luxury, music, and arts markets, the firm has extensive experience in various legal areas that interact with these practices such as corporate, business, labour, contracts and civil law including commercial litigation, arbitration and alternative dispute resolution mechanisms.

Irrespective of its complexity, Bichara e Motta Advogados is equipped with a team of specialists prepared to apply its multidisciplinary practice and up-to-date expertise in these areas to fully satisfy its clients’ needs with flexibility and the necessary approach to provide tailor-made and innovative services. more >>

Stephen Sidkin

Stephen is a founder partner of Fox Williams specialising in commercial agreements, intellectual property licensing and franchise law. He is focused on creating value for clients by helping them achieve their business objectives.

Stephen established and leads Fox Williams’ agentlaw team and developed, a Fox Williams website dedicated to agency and distribution law. He is head of the Commerce & Technology Department of Fox Williams.

Stephen is involved in advising many of Fox Willams’ fashion clients on their agency, supply, franchising, and licensing arrangements. Stephen drove forward the creation of and now chairs the Fashion Law Group. He was a member of the team which advised the Superdry brand owner, SuperGroup Plc, in connection with its institutional and retail share offerings which resulted in SuperGroup listing on the London Stock Exchange.

Stephen has written and spoken widely on agency and distribution agreements, in particular, and commercial law issues, in general. The last few months have seen articles written by Stephen published in Drapers and Cabinet Maker among other trade publications. He is the UK author of International Agency and Distribution Agreements published by LexisNexis and was co-author of the UK chapter of Kluwer’s Commercial Agency and Distributorship Agreements (3rd edition). He is also the UK contributing author to Handbuch Moderecht (Fashion Law Handbook) (2011).

In each of 2012 and 2013 he was a judge for the Drapers Awards.

A specialist area of Stephen’s franchising practice concerns the international franchise, license and co-operation arrangements of a number of leading independent schools including North London Collegiate School and Wellington College. Advice has been given by Stephen and his team in respect of schools in China, India, South Korea, Thailand, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and West Africa. Stephen chairs the Fox Williams International Schools Group.

He is a regular commentator on radio and television where his appearances include Watchdog (going head to head with Anne Robinson) and BBC Radios 4 and 5. He has also appeared on many programmes made by Legal Television Network. In addition he keeps in touch with King’s College, London from where he graduated with an honours degree in Law before obtaining his Masters in Business Law.

Stephen has served for many years on the Commercial Law Committee of the City of London Law Society. He was its Chairman from 1995 to 1999 and is currently again its Deputy Chairman. In addition, between 2007 – 2012 he was President of the Contract Law Commission of the Union Internationale des Avocats (UIA).

In 2012 he became Co-Director of Communications of the UIA.

During New York Fashion Week in February 2013 Stephen chaired the UIA Fashion law seminar and spoke on the subject of taking back exclusive distribution rights from distributors.

Prior to joining the UIA he was a long standing member of Association Internationale des Jeunes Avocats and spoke at many of its congresses.

Over the years clients and partners have given Stephen the nicknames of “The Barracuda” and “The Rottweiler”. But out of the office his wife, Lynne, and son, Sam, regard him as a pussy cat. With their assistance he loves nothing more than to mess around on boats, whether on river, lake or sea. His greatest maritime adventure to date was to skipper a 4m open boat down the Grand Canal of Venice and into the Bacino di San Marco When restricted to dry land he collects political cartoons, is an avid student of brand marketing, and is a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing. more >>

Arne Engesæth

Arne Engesæth’s area of expertise is contract law, with particular emphasis on projects. The work is related to negotiations and contract drafting, as well as advising in projects and in conflicts. He is also a specialist on oil and gas contracts, contracting, processing plants, consultancy agreements, IT agreements and real estate. Arne Engesæth is often appointed as mediator and arbitrator.

Arne Engesæth is ranked amongst Norway’s most prominent lawyers in his areas of expertise. He is ranked as leading in the category construction in Legal 500, as leading in the category real estate: constructions in Chambers Europe 2014, and leading in the category Contract Law in the 2012, 2013 and 2014 ranking in the Norwegian Financial Daily’s lawyers survey.

Contract Law Practice:

It is important to Wiersholm to be able to offer the best legal and commercial solution for our clients at all stages of the contracting process, including in the preparatory, negotiation and drafting phase, and the execution and compliance phase, as well as in the event of disputes, if any.

Our clients belong to every part of the private business sector both nationally and internationally. Most of our clients are leaders, either nationally or globally, in their industries, and they demand solid legal assistance. We provide such assistance on every area of contract law, including extensive and complex contracts regarding the construction of buildings/facilities/installations/vessels, as well as deliveries of goods and services both onshore and offshore.

We have much experience with contract negotiation, preparation of contracts, project execution, final settlement and dispute resolution. We focus on and are used to working closely with technical personnel in order to find the best legal and commercial solution for our clients. Several of our lawyers are also regularly used as umpires, experts, arbitrators and mediators in disputes regarding development and construction contracts.


Wiersholm is an internationally oriented law firm dedicated to covering the needs of businesses with regard to strategic advice on business law, operational legal services and litigation.

Our services are based on cutting-edge legal expertise combined with efficiency and business comprehension. We have 150 lawyers and 50 other employees who are solution-oriented and work as a team, with a willingness to give more than our clients expect.

Our lawyers are specialists in all the key fields of business law.

Our clients are first and foremost companies and organisations in the private sector. We also assist the public sector, idealistic organisations and private individuals. Read Philosophy and History and International Relations for more information on Wiersholm.

Wiersholm usually comes out on top in all the leading lawyer rankings. more >>

Helgi Jóhannesson

Helgi Jóhannesson is among Iceland’s most experienced attorneys in the fields of corporate law, contract law and bankruptcy law. Helgi has worked at LEX since 1988 and holds an LL.M. degree from the University of Miami School of Law.

In addition to general legal practice, Helgi has been a lecturer in law at the Reykjavík University School of Business for about a decade. Helgi has since 1991 been chairman of the Vehicle Insurance Recovery Commission pursuant to the Act on Traffic and he has served as chairman of the Assessment Committee on Compensation for Expropriation since 1993. Moreover, Helgi was a member of the Icelandic Student Loan Fund’s Appeals Committee from 1997-2009.

Helgi is active in social affairs. He sat on the board of the Icelandic Lawyers Association from 1992-1999, serving as chairman from 1997-1999. Furthermore, he was a board member of the Icelandic Bar Association from 2001-2003 and chairman of the association from 2005-2008. He has also served on the board of the Icelandic Adoption Society. Helgi now sits on the tribunal of the Motorcycle and Snowmobile Sports Association of Iceland.

Helgi has three children. He is living with Þórný Jónsdóttir, marketing manager. Helgi is a qualified hiking guide from the Iceland Tourist Guide School. He enjoys hiking, skiing and riding motorcycles as well as salmon fishing and hunting.

LEX Law Offices:

LEX Law Offices in its present form has strong roots dating back over half a century. In 1959, Mr. Sveinn Snorrason, Supreme Court Attorney, founded his law firm and soon three Supreme Court Attorneys joined him, Mr. Jónas Aðalsteinsson, who still acts as of counsel to the firm, Mr. Guðmundur Ingvi Sigurðsson and Mr. Jóhannes L.L. Helgason. As the years passed the firm grew and was branded with the name LEX Law Offices in 1987. In 2000, LEX merged with KPMG LAW in Iceland under the LEX brand name. Then in 2005 LEX and Nestor Law Offices also merged.

The story of Nestor began in 1977 when Mr. Jón Steinar Gunnlaugsson, a former Supreme Court Judge, founded a law firm in his own name. Later Mr. Karl Axelsson, Supreme Court Attorney, assistant professor and current chairman of the board at LEX joined him and, in cooperation with others, they formed Nestor Law Offices.

Based on its strong historical roots and solid foundation, LEX has become one of Iceland’s largest law firms with 45 lawyers and two offices, the headquarters at Borgartún 26 in Reykjavik and an office at Hafnarstræti 94 in Akureyri, in the north of Iceland. more >>

Ahsan Zahir Rizvi

Mr. Rizvi is one of the leading corporate lawyers of Asia. He has extensive experience in all aspects of corporate law and non-contentious legal matters including contract negotiations, corporate and financial restructuring, mergers & acquisitions, energy sector, Islamic modes of financing and project finance.

He has drafted various statutory enactments and regulatory frameworks for Pakistan and has assisted the Asian Development Bank in the restructuring of the regulatory framework for the securities and corporate sector of Pakistan. He is considered an authority in the fields of project finance, energy and telecommunications due to his experience and involvement in several major projects in these sectors.

Mr. Rizvi completed his LL.B. (Hons.) from the London School of Economics and Political Science in 1979, was called to the Bar of England and Wales from Lincoln’s Inn in 1980, and completed his LL.M. from the University of London in 1981. He has been practicing corporate law in Pakistan, UAE, England and Afghanistan. Mr. Rizvi is a Registered Foreign Lawyer with the Solicitors Regulatory Authority.

Mr. Rizvi is the recipient of the prestigious Sitara-e-Imtiaz (Star of Excellence) from the President of Pakistan and the Leading Corporate Lawyer Award 2006 to-date by AsiaLaw.

Mr. Rizvi has represented clients in the superior judiciary in more than two hundred matters and has undertaken international arbitration work in London, Brussels and Singapore.


RIAALAW in association with Barker Gillette LLP, brings together English law expertise in, inter alia, corporate & commercial, property, employment, dispute resolution with a team of UK and US qualified lawyers specializing in corporate finance, project finance, mergers & acquisitions, energy, petroleum, natural resources, telecommunications and trade law disputes.

The association of RIAALAW with Barker Gillette LLP enables the clients of both RIAALAW and Barker Gillette to avail the benefits of the combined strengths of both law firms. Due to RIAALAW’s affiliation with Lex Mundi, clients of Barker Gillette are able to have immediate access to the premier law firms of 160 jurisdictions across the globe. RIAALAW’s associated offices in Afghanistan, UAE and China, are available to provide the clients of both RIAALAW and Barker Gillette LLP with ready access to experienced legal acumen of international repute.

With the combined experience of more than two hundred years in legal practice in several practice areas the RIAALAW association with Barker Gillette LLP is able to provide its clients pragmatic, practical and cost effective legal services. more >>

Hussam T. Al Ghazzawi

Hussam commenced practising in 1992 and currently oversees GPA’s operations in the Central and Eastern Provinces. He is a prominent practitioner with specialisation in commercial law and dispute resolution. In addition he drafts, reviews and revises contracts and agreements. His specialized areas of practice also include Shari’a Law, international law, corporate law, admiralty and maritime law.

Hussam acts for several national and international companies and regularly appears before Shari’a and commercial courts as well as before the arbitration tribunals and other quasi-judicial bodies in the Kingdom.

He is a member of various local and international professional bars and associations including member of the Lawyers Committee of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Eastern Province and the National Lawyers Committee of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Through these committees, he continues to play a key role in the evolution of several local regulations affecting the profession.

Hussam’s academic qualifications include:

LL.M. (International Commercial law), Robert Gordon University, United Kingdom (2006); Master’s Diploma in International Law (with distinction), Alexandria University, Egypt (1998); Master’s Degree Program on Intellectual Property of Franklin Pierce Center, USA (1998), Diploma Program in Advanced Studies of Intellectual Property Law conducted by World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in association with the Institute of International Law, Dubai in 1998; Bachelor of Law (LL.B), King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia (1992).

Al Ghazzawi Law Firm:

Al Ghazzawi Professional Association is a full-service firm with a strong international profile which has approximately 30 lawyers spread across offices in Jeddah, Riyadh & Dammam, GPA was established in 1969 by Dr. Talal Amin Al Ghazzawi, the current Chairman of GPA.

In addition to advising major Saudi businesses, GPA counts a substantial number of significant international companies among its clients

Continuing with a heritage of high standards; combined with modern enthusiasm, Dr. Belal Al-Ghazzawi &Mr. Hussam Al-Ghazzawi joined as partners and elevated the Association into an internationally known full-fledged law firm. more >>