The Firm has always been involved in financing on behalf of borrowers, while the full-fledged banking practice on behalf of banks started in 1982 when Barclays Bank established its shipping branch at Piraeus and our Firm was entrusted with the overall legal support of the Bank. Our Firm has acted over the years and now acts as advisor to a number of Greek and foreign banks on their usual banking activities, on financing and on litigation.
The advice on usual banking work relates to bank licensing, opening of bank accounts, corporate documentation of clients, issue of bank guarantees and letters of credit, transfers, taxation of banks, bank secrecy, questions of employment and all other banking activities.
The work on financing ranges from the structure of the financing (legal aspects) to the organisation of and the attendance at the closing and relates to dollar, Euro or multi-currency loans by a single bank or syndicated loans, revolving facilities, risk participation agreements, assignments of loans etc. The work includes review and comment on term sheets and commitment letters, the preparation of the loan documentation and the securities (guarantees, mortgages, assignments, pledges), review of corporate authorisations of borrowers etc., review of insurances and co-ordination of closing.
The litigation team of the Firm is handling recovery of banks’ claims, including enforcement of mortgages on ships or real estate and arrest or prenotation of assets as security. This work is carried out in Greece or world-wide by coordinating action of local counsel.
The Firm has been also involved and/or advised banks extensively in agreements for foreign exchange transactions, swaps and other derivatives, including related netting issues, money laundering, consumers’ protection, data protection and the transfer of banking business, including the transfer of Barclays Bank branches in Greece.
So far as Banking clients are concerned, the Firm represents or has represented over the years (in respect of advisory services and litigation) on a regular basis or ad hoc national and international banks, including Deutsche Bank AG, Credit Suisse AG, Eurobank Ergasias S.A., Unicredit Bank AG (formerly Bayerische Hypo-Und Vereinsbank AG), Credit Europe Bank N.V., Natixis S.A., Commerzbank Atliengesellschaft, Bank of America, Barclays Bank UK plc., Emporiki Bank (formerly Commercial Bank of Greece S.A.), Credit Lyonnais Grece, Credit Agricole Corporate & Investment Bank (formerly Calyon), Deutsche Schiffsbank AG, Piraeus Bank, Omega Bank, Proton Bank, FBB, Aspis Bank, ABN AMRO Bank (formerly Fortis Bank (the Netherlands)), Bank BNP Paribas (Switzerland), United Overseas Bank (Geneva), National Westminster Bank, Hamburgische Landesbank (Hamburg), ANZ (Australia), Atlantic Bank (NewYork), American Express, and the Bank of Scotland.