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SPC Legal has advised Startup Wise Guys on leading a USD 1 million pre-seed financing round for Lithuanian technology start-up Watalook.

TGS Baltic has represented Bigbank subsidiary Ruutli Majad OU before the Estonian Competition Authority in merger control proceedings related to the acquisition of two agricultural holdings.

Morgan Lewis has advised Yandex on restructuring the ownership of its MLU and self-driving joint ventures with Uber and acquisition of all shares in the Yandex.Eats, Yandex.Lavka, Yandex.Delivery, and Self-Driving businesses for a cash consideration of USD 1.0 billion. Alrud advised Uber on the deal. Cooley and Herbert Smith Freehills reportedly also advised the seller. 

Kinstellar has advised the joint venture of Romania's Element Industrial and Dedeman on the sale of Eli Park 1 to South African real estate investment trust Fortress. Dentons advised the buyer on the transaction.

Wiercinski, Kwiecinski, Baehr has advised BNP Paribas Bank Polska on financing the construction of a residential building in Wroclaw by Okre Development. Barylski, Olszewski, Brzozowski reportedly advised Okre Development on the deal.

White & Case has advised Elga Coal LLC on a USD 1.66 billion syndicated financing deal with a pool of lenders led by Gazprombank. Linklaters reportedly advised the lenders on the transaction.

Ilej & Partners, in cooperation with Karanovic & Partners and working with Dentons, has advised Singapore's Hotel Properties Limited on its acquisition of a 50% stake in Kupari resort developer Avenue Ulaganja.

Allen & Overy has advised Czech Gas Networks Investments S.a r.l on its first-ever green issuance and placement of EUR 500 million green notes with investors on international capital markets. Clifford Chance advised the joint bookrunners Citigroup Global Markets Limited, ING Bank N.V., Societe Generale, and UniCredit Bank AG.

TGS Baltic and Dentons have advised the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Lithuania on its EUR 750 million Eurobond issuance. Sorainen advised the lead managers Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan on the deal. Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer reportedly also advised the banks.

Kocian Solc Balastik has advised J&T Banka on entering into a strategic partnership with Amista.

BCGL has advised Mid Europa Partner portfolio company Symfonia on the acquisition of Reset2.

Vulic Law has advised Italian Serie B football club Lecce in a Falco Case filed against Red Star Belgrade, which was resolved before FIFA’s Football Tribunal.

Turkish litigation-focused law firm Bozkurt Bozkurt has opened an office in New York. The new office will be headed by the firm’s US resident Partner Gokhan Bozkurt. The firm's Istanbul office will continue to be managed by Partner Mustafa Bozkurt.

Gide’s Warsaw office Head of Capital Markets Robert Dulewicz has left the firm and the legal services sector, the law firm announced.

Mihaela Nyerges has joined Romanian firm Vlasceanu, Ene & Partners as a Partner.

Norton Rose Fulbright has announced it is forming a new alliance with Turkish firm Pekin Bayar Mizrahi. The international firm's former affiliated law firm in Turkey will continue to be part of its enlarged team.

Rafal Zakrzewski has joined CMS as a Partner in Poland, accompanied by a team of three lawyers.

As of September 1, 2021, Hugh Owen joined PwC as Of Counsel, M&A.

BiH's Baros, Bicakcic & Partners announced an exclusive cooperation with the UAE-based firm BinSuwadian Advocates & Legal Consultants.

PwC Legal Estonia has promoted Karin Marosov and Indrek Ergma to Partners.

Deloitte Legal has announced it hired Robert Semczuk as a Partner Associate in its Warsaw team.

In July, PwC-affiliated Turkish firm GSG Hukuk has promoted Yavuz Dayioglu to Partner in Istanbul.

Pepeliaev Group has announced it hired Mikhail Tserkovnikov as its head of the energy group in Moscow. 

Karolin Andreewitch and Philipp Schrader have made Partner at E+H in Austria.

The National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia adopted a new Law on Consumer Protection (“Law”) on 09 September 2021. The main reason for adopting the amendments to the current law lies in providing a higher level of consumer protection and trying to apply it more actively, in relation to the Law from 2014 and its subsequent amendments from 2016 and 2018. The most prominent novelty concerns direct marketing by telephone, ie the introduction of the “do not call” register. The “do not call” register is a list of landline and mobile telephone numbers of consumers who do not want to receive calls and / or messages as part of the promotion, marketing and / or sale by telephone.

In 2020, Ukraine’s government awarded the first two concessions in the history of Ukraine – 35-year concessions of the assets of Kherson and Olvia, two significant ports on the Black Sea. Building on this success, in October 2020, the government made a media splash by releasing a roadmap for further public private partnership (PPP) projects and held various promotion events since then.

In its decision dated June 8, 2021, and numbered 2018/5832, the Turkish Constitutional Court [the “Court”] ruled that the dismissal of the case in terms of non-jurisdiction nearly after seven years on the ground of the arbitration clause does not violate the right to property.

In general, the Serbian Agricultural Land Act ("ALA") envisages granting the use of agricultural land, free of charge, to state-owned subjects, or, in instances where particular plots have not been leased for three or more agricultural years, agricultural land may be tendered for to be used by registered agricultural holdings.

European Directive no. 2019/904 on the reduction of the impact of certain plastic products on the environment was transposed into Romanian law as of 2 September 2021 by Ordinance no. 6/2021 on the reduction of the impact of certain plastic products on the environment (the “Ordinance”).

In the age of digital philosophy, when the electronic management of documents become more and more prominent in both private and public sectors, digitalization of invoices is rather a logical development than an innovative approach in the functioning of the supply chain. Harmonization of e-invoicing regulation in B2G sector has been in effect for seven years in the EU, while Serbia established an e-invoice system in 2019, prescribing mandatory registration of invoices issued in commercial transactions with the public sector on the central registry of invoices (CRF). The most recent novelty in the field happened with adopting the Electronic Invoicing Act and its by-laws when a comprehensive set of rules regulating e-invoicing came into effect.

On 31 August 2021, Government Ordinances nos. 8/2021 and 11/2021, amending the Fiscal Code and the Fiscal Procedure Code, were published in the Official Gazette no. 832/31.08.2021.

An unregistered community design is established merely by the disclosure of a design and triggers protection for three years from the date of disclosure. This informal right was created to satisfy the demands of the industry and creatives for a design protection right providing broad-ranging territorial protection and safety for short-lived products without an elaborate and costly registration procedure.

As known, several months ago, Whatsapp Inc. had informed its users about the update on the terms of use and privacy policy and announced that “the users must consent to their WhatsApp data being shared with Facebook companies in order to continue using WhatsApp, otherwise as of February 8, 2021 they will not be able to use WhatsApp”. This update stirred a huge debate among users, and millions stopped using the app. That being said, on January 12, 2021, the Personal Data Protection Authority [“Authority”] initiated an ex officio investigation as to whether WhatsApp infringed Article 15 of Turkish Personal Data Protection Law No. 6698 [“Law No.6698”]. 

Patents and innovation are closely linked. Patents can boost innovation by granting a legal monopoly over certain technology, and inventors may be willing to invest more time, money and creativity into their inventions if they can do this in anticipation of being rewarded with such monopoly on their invention. Furthermore, patents boost future innovation because the technology protected by a patent will be made publicly available and can be used by everyone once the patent protection term expires. However, patents may even hinder innovation, because technology and its further-development could be blocked by existing patents.

In the ordinary course of commercial life, “bankruptcy” may be inevitable for financially distressed companies. In such case, the question arises with respect to the status of receivables from the bankrupt entity and how they will be collected.

Data controllers and data processors had until 24 August 2021 to align with the new Law on Personal Data Protection in North Macedonia (“Law”), which introduced the GDPR in the local legislation at the beginning of 2020. Non-compliance with the new obligations for personal data protection can lead to severe penalties, such as fines of up to 2% and up to 4% of the total annual turnover from the previous financial year, per misdemeanor.

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With the interim government firmly in charge until the upcoming elections take place, Bulgaria is experiencing strong economic wind in its sails, according to Wolf Theiss Partner Richard Clegg.

In a recent article for CEE Legal Matters, Schoenherr Attorney at Law Alexandra Bognar wrote that Hungary adopted a UBO Register Act this year. We spoke to Bognar to learn more about the new piece of legislation.

On June 23, 2021, CEE Legal Matters reported that DGKV had advised Internet Corporated Networks on the sale of its hosting and domain business to Superhosting.bg. CEE In-House Matters spoke with Julian Borislavov, CEO and Co-Founder of ICN to learn more about the deal.