In line with the similar objectives of EU policy–making bodies on the establishment of a framework to screen and control of FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) in the EU, the Hungarian Parliament adopted a new law (“Foreign Investment Act” or “Act”), which requires ministerial approval for foreign direct investment into specific sectors.
We are extremely pleased to announce that we have been shortlisted in the Central Europe Law Firm of the Year 2018 category for the Lawyer European Awards (the only Hungarian one-country law firm on the list) and for the Deal of the Year Hungary 2018 category for the CEE Legal Matters Deal of the Year for the Vodafone acquisition of UPC’s cable business on which LKT, alongside Slaughter & May, represented Vodafone.
Lakatos, Köves & Partners (LKT) won the "Law Firm of the Year" award for 2018, having won the same award for 2017, in the 2nd EuropaProperty.com annual Hungarian & Balkans Real Estate Awards. EuropaProperty.com is a leading Commercial Real Estate publisher and Events organiser in Central Eastern and Southern Eastern Europe.
LKT advises Blackstone Real Estate Debt Strategies on the Hungarian aspects of a €337m bond financing to a new luxury hotels group owned by Värde Partners.
LKT advised Karlovarské mineralní vodi a.s. (“KMV”) on the acquisition of distribution rights for Pepsi Co products in Hungary and all distribution related assets. The transaction formed a part of the regional (Czech, Slovakia, Hungary) acquisition by KMV of Pepsi Co’s distribution activities.
LKT is delighted to welcome Dr. Péter Homoki, who has joined the firm’s TMT practice. Over the last 18 years, Péter has built a career on his twin passions of the law and IT as a practicing lawyer and software developer for banks and financial institutions. His skillset has given him a unique insight into the legal and IT problems and solutions facing regulated industries and his expertise on the interface between information technology and law is recognised internationally. He has been chair of the IT Law Committee of the Council of European Bars and Law Societies for six years, and is currently the IT commissioner of the Hungarian Bar Association.
As in every year, October has been busy, as summer recedes into the past and year end deadlines approach, and it also sees two important events in our “business development” calendar, the International Bar Association (IBA) Annual Meeting and Expo Real, the annual gathering of real estate professionals in Munich.
June 6 - a night of celebration for Lakatos, Köves & Partners (“LKT”) being awarded for the „Deal of the year (Hungary)” at the CEE Legal Matters Deal of the Year Awards Banquet in Prague with the Waberer’s IPO matter.
On 9 May, Vodafone announced its agreement to acquire Liberty Global’s operations in Germany, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Romania for an enterprise value of €18.4 billion...
Lakatos, Köves & Partners („LKT”) advised Europe’s leading transportation mogul, WABERER’s INTERNATIONAL Nyrt. („Waberer’s”) again throughout the buyout of its minority partner in WSZL...
LKT’s Real Estate team, headed by partner Attila Ungár, advised Atrium Properties, a leading owner and manager of shopping centres in the CEE region, on its sale of EuroCenter Óbuda Shopping Center in Budapest to leading Hungarian real estate developer Wing Zrt.
A new Attorney’s Act came into force in in June 2017 and with like effect from 1 January 2018. The new Act is relevant for attorneys and also for companies, as it will change the status of in-house counsel and companies’ procedural rights, due to the new broadened scope of legal professional privilege (LPP).
Leading Hungarian law firm Lakatos, Köves and Partners provides Hungarian law advice to Mid Europa Partners in relation to the IPO of Waberer’s International Nyrt., one of Europe’s largest haulage and logistics companies.
Digital markets and online services have recently become hot topics in both competition and consumer protection laws worldwide. The European Commission has recently published its report on the e-commerce sector, as part of the digital Digital Single Market strategy. Within the EU, national competition authorities (NCAs) and consumer protection authorities are sharing their experience of cases related to the sector.
In Hungary, the country’s Competition Office has begun an investigation into the use of so-called ‘cash substitutes’ such as mobile payments and cards for the making of payments, with the main goal of such investigation appearing to be to explore the conditions applicable between traditional credit institutions and retailers. Dr. Szabolcs Mestyán and John Fenemore of Lakatos, Köves and Partners discuss this investigation in the context of regulatory and policy developments surrounding payment infrastructure in Hungary, and analyse why the Hungarian Government is paying particular attention to the retail payments sector.
On 2 May 2017 the Hungarian Competition Authority (HCA) revoked its foreign-to-foreign merger clearance decision granted in January 2017 to Infineon Technologies AG for the acquisition of Wolfspeed (i.e. the Power and RF division of Cree, Inc.) due to misleading information provided in the application. The HCO also imposed a fine of HUF 75.8 million (EUR 242,000/USD 263,000) on Infineon.
Leading Hungarian independent law firm Lakatos, Köves and Partners (LKT) was “Highly Commended” at The Lawyer European Awards 2017 in the “Central European Law Firm of the Year” category, and was shortlisted for The Chambers Europe Awards 2017 in the “Law Firm of the Year: Hungary” category. LKT has also achieved top rankings in the recently published The Legal 500 2017 and Chambers Global and Chambers Europe 2017 annual rankings.
In recent years Central Europe has become a leading centre for car manufacturers in Europe and Hungary has played an important role in that development. A significant part of Hungary’s GDP and industrial employment is now represented by the automotive industry. There are over 700 automotive industry related companies operating in Hungary and the number of premium category cars projected to be manufactured in Hungary is the highest in the region.
Recent years have seen a significant increase in the amount of intra-regional M&A within the Central Europe region. While the period 1990-2008 was primarily characterised by investment into Hungary (and the wider region) from large multinationals or large to mid-sized companies from e.g. US, Germany, Japan, etc., recent years have seen an increased amount of activity by regional players increasing their footprint across the region.
In recent years digital technologies substantially changed the business environment of many industries such as media, retail, travel, accommodation. The operation of the new undertakings was facilitated primarily by digital technologies. In Hungary and other parts of Central Europe that process has often been rapid as the incumbents were weak or not well established—see for example the opportunity presented to budget airline Wizz by the collapse of Malév or the speed with which mobile telephony became established in the 1990s, in the absence of any well developed fixed line network.
After a number of years of anticipation, 2016 saw a number of large non-performing loan sales in the Hungarian market.
Hungarian law firm Lakatos, Köves and Partners (LKT) has provided Hungarian legal advice to international law firm Hogan Lovells (HL) and EDF in relation to the sale of EDF DÉMÁSZ Zrt, EDF’s Hungarian subsidiary, to ENKSZ (“Első Nemzeti Közműszolgáltató Zrt.”).
This briefing provides a summary of the amendments to the Hungarian Competition Act (“New Rules”), with particular emphasis on the contemplated amendments of the Hungarian merger control rules and private enforcement of competition law. Certain changes are also made regarding leniency applications and fines.
The winners of the CIJ Awards Hungary 2016 were announced on 29 November 2016 at Budapest’s Ritz Carlton hotel. The CIJ Awards honour the Real Estate industry’s most regarded projects, firms and leaders.
Corporate and Competition team further strengthens Lakatos Köves & Partners’ leading independent Budapest practice.
Hungarian law firm Lakatos Köves & Partners (LKT) announces that John Fenemore, a senior banking and finance lawyer from a leading London/City firm, joins LKT as a partner.
Efficiency, independence, flexibility, professionalism, and protection of sensitive information are among the main reasons why parties to disputes prefer to opt for arbitration instead of ordinary courts. These benefits, however, do not come without a cost.
The European Commission has registered on 30 November 2015 a European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) inviting the Commission to propose to trigger the procedure in Article 7 of the EU Treaty (the Treaty) for alleged breaches of the EU's fundamental values by Hungary and to bring Hungary’s case before the Council of the European Union.
The French trademark office has rejected several applications for the registration of designations like “PRAY FOR PARIS” and “JE SUIS PARIS”.
The decision of the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) forces Facebook and all other companies collecting and transferring personal data from Hungary to the US to rethink their current practices. One possible solution would be to adopt and register with the Hungarian Data Protection Authority binding corporate rules on the treatment of such data.
A joint venture of CA Immo and Union Investment has sold the Europolis M1 logistics park in Budapest to the Prologis Group advised by Lakatos, Köves and Partners.
Three LKT Partners (Péter Lakatos, Péter Köves and Richard Lock) visited Shanghai in late March, to give a presentation on investing in Hungary and to meet potential investors.
CEELegalmatters.com has covered the Kékkúti sale, in which our firm advised the buyer, Karlovarske mineralni vody
Lakatos, Köves and Partners has been shortlisted for The Lawyer European Awards 2015 in the Law Firm of the Year Central Europe category.
Lakatos, Köves and Partners advises Flow Aviation, a recently established Hungarian private-jet services company
Péter Köves has been elected as the Vice President of the Bar Issues Commission of the International Bar Association (“IBA”), the world’s largest association for lawyers, law firms and bars
Lakatos, Köves and Partners is pleased to have contributed a chapter on the legal environment in Hungary, included in a publication (in Chinese) on the legal environment in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe
Leading Hungarian law firm, Lakatos, Köves and Partners, has been advising Bayerische Landesbank (“BLB”) on the sale of its Hungarian subsidiary MKB Bank Zrt., which closed on Monday 29 September 2014
The first group of consumer protection officers have taken their exams successfully in recent weeks at Lakatos, Köves and Partners
Partner Szabolcs Mestyán analyses the Hungarian state-controlled mobile-payment system to E-Finance & Payments Law and Policy magazine
One of Hungary's biggest real estate owner, Prologis chose Lakatos, Köves and Partners as its legal advisor on its newest acquisition in Budapest
The leading independent Hungarian law firm Lakatos, Köves and Partners advised Al Habtoor Group on buying Hotel InterContinental in Budapest
Interview with Szabolcs Mestyán on LKT's aviation practice
Managing mergers shall become easier after the amendments to the Competition Act
LKT advises on an ongoing media M&A
Lakatos, Köves and Partners advised DVM on its project to renovate one of the landmark buildings of Budapest, which was made into a first-class “A” category office building
Schibsted finishes buying up Hasznaltauto.hu and adds Expressz.hu to its market leading classified ad portfolio
The new legislation reflects recent European and Hungarian legal developments
The new partner will lead the Bank and Finance practice with founding partner Péter Köves
Lakatos, Köves and Partners has been shortlisted for The Lawyer European Awards 2014 in the Law Firm of the Year Central Europe category
Currently Lakatos, Köves and Partners is amongst others representing one of the most important Hungarian commercial banks in a procedure launched by the Competition Office. The Competition Office suspects more banks of having entered into an anticompetitive agreement (cartel) to restrict the repayment of foreign exchange loans at the end of 2011. Lakatos, Köves and Partners' client, MKB Bank Zrt. („MKB”) is also charged with being the leader of the bank cartel.
The Hungarian M&A market’s leading legal advisor, Lakatos, Köves and Partners, recently advised the Irish Communicorp Group on the sale of Juventus Radio
It could be a tipping point in the Hungarian real estate market as opportunistic funds and investors express fresh interest, says head of Lakatos, Köves and Partners’ Real Estate practice Attila Ungár
Media market veteran law firm Lakatos, Köves and Partners helped the Norwegian media group in acquiring the leading Hungarian car classifieds online portal
Investment protection specialist Lakatos, Köves and Partners has advised foreign companies on their asset-selling to the Hungarian state which has bought back two important and valuable companies from their private owners, as part of the government’s publicly stated aim to increase its influence over public service providers
Lakatos, Köves and Partners joins the Corporate Supporters Forum (CSF) of Transparency International
As the new Civil Code and Criminal Code are already passed by the Hungarian Parliament, the Hungarian Government has also decided to re-codify the Civil Procedure Code and the Criminal Procedure Code.
A bill has been prepared by the Ministry of Administration and Justice which would implement the provisions of Directive 2012/28/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2012 on certain permitted uses of orphan works into Hungarian law.
The Hungarian Competition Office imposed fines on MTM-SBS Televízió Zrt. for unfair business-to-consumer-practices in the amount of HUF 5,000,000.
The Hungarian Financial Supervisory Authority imposed fines on Allianz in the amount of HUF 10,000,000 for shredding documents on the statements of the private pension fund members, which it was obliged to retain in accordance with the applicable legal provisions.
The case-law analysing group held its first session in the building of the Hungarian Curia (i.e. the Supreme Court) regarding the case-law of the assessment procedure.
In accordance with Act XXII of 2013 on the Hungarian Energy and Public Utility Authority, the new authority (formerly called Hungarian Energy Authority) has been given much stronger powers and position, as it qualifies now as an autonomous authority.
In compliance with the requirements set forth in 2009/119/EC directive, the Hungarian Parliament adopted a new act in order to maintain strategic crude oil storage and to facilitate the oil supply of Hungary.
"Teljesítésigazolási Szakértői szerv" - (TSZSZ) - TSZSZ will be established on July 1 2013. The parties of a construction contract will be entitled to request TSZSZ to give an expert opinion in connection with non-issuance of a settlement certificate or non-payment following the issuance of it.
Amendments to the Duties Act - The amendments to the Duties Act intend to simplify the application of the rules contained in the Act.
Amendment - On 18 October 2013, the legislation adopted the amendment to certain energy related statutes to ease the administrative and financial burden on consumers. The amendment will enter into force on the 15th day after its publication in Magyar Közlöny.
Agreements on the price of repairs of insured vehicles concluded between insurance companies and repair shops are by nature anti-competitive, ruled the EU Court of Justice.
The General Court of the Court of Justice of the European Union upheld the earlier decision of the European Commission, which concluded that certain loans provided to Nitrogénművek Vegyipari Zrt. by Magyar Fejlesztési Bank ("MFB", the Hungarian Development Bank) qualify as state aid.
The Council and the European Parliament reached a political compromise on the new banking regulatory framework implementing Basel III rules on bank capital requirements.
An agreement was reached on the capping of bankers' bonuses, generally maximizing them in the 1-year amount of salary.
The Department of Justice filed a brief in a Supreme Court case challenging the constitutionality of Section 3 of the federal law "Defense of Marriage Act" ("DOMA").
The new Civil Code of Hungary was promulgated last week as Act V of 2013. It will enter into force on 15 March 2014.
They make the procedure of the Court more similar to that of ordinary courts as the Court may order public hearings and the judges could be disqualified due to bias.
The Supreme Court upheld the judgement of the Metropolitan Court annulling the decision of the National Media and Infocommunications Authority that gave the fourth telecommunications-frequencies to the state-owned MPVI Mobil Zrt.
According to the amendment set forth in the Bill, the Minister of Local Governments would be given the right to ask for the revision of local government decrees from the Constitutional Court.
On 7 January 2013, the Constitutional Court declared that the Act on Election of the Members of the Parliament is unconstitutional as a consequence of the introduction of preliminary registration.
The application in processes of authorization, affirmation, registration and withdrawals and the notification in processes of notification, must be submitted in a form or in electronic format via the electronic data receiver system (ERA) if it is ordered by the Chairman of the Hungarian Financial Supervising Authority. The old order will function till the new system become operational.
Pursuant to the recent amendment of the Tobacco Act by the Parliament, national tobacco-shops are also entitled to sell alcoholic beverages, energy drinks, coffee, mineral water, soft drinks and newspapers in addition tobacco and lottery tickets.
The Hungarian Parliament accepted the New Civil Code effective from 15 March 2014. The new regualtion brings changes in many fields and incorporates substantive family and corporate law provisons.