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21 October 2020

Clyde & Co hires four-lawyer arbitration team from Foley Hoag in Paris

Hery Ranjeva and Ivan Urzhumov join as partners with focus on francophone Africa and Eastern Europe

By Ben Rigby

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Clyde & Co has hired a four-lawyer arbitration team from US firm Foley Hoag in Paris.

Hery Ranjeva and Ivan Urzhumov are joining the UK firm as partners along with two associates, boosting Clyde & Co’s Paris arbitration team to 15.

The pair had been at Foley Hoag for more than nine years  – Ranjeva as partner, Urzhumov as a counsel – having previously worked together at Winston & Strawn. They specialise in emerging markets disputes in Africa, Russia and the CIS.

Ranjeva holds both French and Malagasy nationality and has acted in both countries’ national courts and tribunals as well as in international arbitrations, including those seated before the ICC’s Paris-based International Court of Arbitration. 

Last year was a bumper year for the ICC, which recorded its second-highest filings on record. Over the last five years there has been a 67% rise in cases involving sovereign states and state-owned enterprises. Both client groups are important to Ranjeva’s practice, which is focused on francophone Africa. 

Urzhumov splits his practice between international arbitration and cross-border litigation and is dual-qualified in both Russian and French law. He trained and worked as an advocate with leading Russian independent firms Magisters and Smirnov Davydov & Susskind before moving to Paris in 2009 to join Winston & Strawn.

Nadia Darwazeh, head of Clyde & Co’s Paris arbitration team, said: "Hery and Ivan's combined deep know-how and geographical focus on francophone Africa and Eastern Europe not only strengthen our arbitration practice but complement the range of expertise we are able to offer our clients in the Paris office and beyond."

The moves come as new ICC arbitration rules were approved last week. These include measures to allow tribunals’ greater flexibility in using virtual hearings. Clyde & Co has promoted the use of virtual arbitrations, thanks to an initiative led by co-head of arbitration Ben Knowles

The firm also recently launched a new private prosecutions service. This was enhanced by the hire last week of experienced investigations partner Rachel Cropper-Mawer, who joined from DAC Beachcroft, having also spent time working in-house at BP and Willis Towers Watson.

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