Pestalozzi is one of the oldest established Swiss law firms on the market. Founded in 1911, it is known for its corporate, financing, and capital markets advisory for a mix of both domestic and foreign clients. The firm has offices in Geneva and Zurich and is a member of the Lex Mundi international network of independent firms.
Focusses / specialisms
The firm is best known for its outstanding work in banking and finance, debt capital markets, structured finance and securitization and financial services regulatory. However, the firm also has standout practices in equity capital markets, M&A and restructuring and insolvency. In banking and finance, the practice advises lending domestic and foreign banks on multicurrency revolving credit facilities for acquisition financing and commodities financing facilities.
In financial services regulatory, the firm has experience on multiple fintech and cryptocurrency mandates, including the regulatory and contractual issues of the digital currency payment systems, Brexit planning and Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) regulatory investigations and enforcement.
In debt capital markets, the firm works on green, covered and high yield bond issuances and capital relief transactions, advising the issuers, arrangers and initial purchasers. In equity, the firm advises on share listings and in structured finance, the firm advises issuers and arrangers in securitisations.
In M&A, the firm advises independent boards of directors, shareholders, sellers and buyers in acquisitions across the media, automation, packaging, tobacco products, insurance and technology industries.
In R&I, the firm advises both creditors and debtors in cross-border bankruptcy proceedings, while also seeing work in asset recovery and insolvency mandates.
Some of the recent key clients of the firm include Spotify Sweden, ING, Volksbank Vorarlberg e.Gen, Gazprombank, EBRD, Panalpina Welttransport, Groupe PSA, Johnson & Johnson, CH Media, Swisscom and Altira.
Research period review: 31st edition (2020/2021)
During the research period, the banking and finance team acted largely on the lender side in transactional matters such as acquisition and corporate financing. It also worked on several refinancing matters. The team also represented clients in the banking and financial services industry on regulatory matters related to derivatives, cryptocurrency, online banking, FINMA and FinSA.
In capital markets, the team represented issuers on deals in the debt capital markets, specifically convertible, green, investment grade and high yield bond issuances. It also worked on issuer side mandates in equity capital markets, namely delistings, private placements and IPOs. Apart from debt and equity transactions, the team acted for companies in securitization and OTC derivatives transactions. It also represented investment funds in fund formations and associated regulatory matters.
The M&A team worked on strategic and private equity acquisitions, advising buy and sell side equally. It also represented corporations in spin offs, joint ventures and reorganizations.
Restructuring and insolvency matters mostly included out of court restructurings where the team advised the debtor and bankruptcy filings where the team acted for creditors.
In terms of lateral moves, the banking and finance and capital markets practice brought over partner Andrea Huber from an in house position. M&A partner Franz Kessler joined the firm from Von der Crone.
Deal highlights: 31st edition (2020/2021)
CH Media CHF 170 million financing
Leclanché CHF 200 million reorganization
Nomad Foods €110 million acquisition of Findus Switzerland
Swisscom €500 million 0.375% green bond issuance
Client feedback: 31st edition (2020/2021)
Banking and finance
“Deep subject matter expertise, solution oriented, very good interaction.”
“They have deep technical and market knowledge.”
“Really enjoy working with them. They are professional and reliable, they got the essence of request very shortly and respond very clearly. They understand the importance and urgency of the business requests and ready to provide qualified services even within 1 business day.”
“Pestalozzi have a very strong legal team with deep knowledge of market. They are very time-efficient and flexible.”
“Strong professional advices coming from experts. Access to specialized lawyers in various fields of expertise. Overall coordination with all stakeholders (notary, banks, auditors...) of complex processes. Timeliness of services and availability of our lawyers.”
“Pestalozzi advised in a timely manner and was capable of dealing with the authorities. They were up to date with the most recent regulatory developments.”
“The law firm provided very practical and hands-on advice albeit a very tight timeline and very complex legal and regulatory questions.”
Financial services regulatory
“Competent, quick, reliable.”
“Service minded and quick to respond. Comprehensive knowledge makes the response short and to the point.”
“Highly responsive; deep relevant knowledge in financial services, solution oriented legal advice.”
“The team handled the matters smoothly and timely. Very pleasant to work with. Very knowledgeable and practical. Quick and solution oriented, which the clients appreciate. Sensible pricing.”
“Perfect. Absolutely professional, responsive, creative and proactive.”
“Provides on time and in depth analyses for each topic.”
“They absolutely understand what they are doing. Sound advice, no fluff, efficient. Great to work with.”
“Excellent know-how in M&A topics, very high customer focus and commitment. Ultra fast response time to our requests.”
“Very approachable team who worked with us as an extension of our business; not overly formal; very practical business focussed solutions”
“Very thought through and practical advise, solution driven.”
“Very responsive, superior advice, high quality of legal advice.”
“Competent, quick, reliable.”
“Efficient, to the point. Experienced with great industry knowledge.”
“Broad knowledge of investment funds, highly responsive, very problem solving oriented.”
“He is a fantastic M&A lawyer. Sound advice, level headed in difficult negotiations, quickly understands the most complex drafts.”
“Know-how and experience in M&A is excellent. Very high commitment to customer. Very service oriented.”
“Provides thought through, practical advise and high quality solutions to problems.”
“Availability/responsiveness. Ability to find the right balance between legal obligations and business constraints. Ability to listen before formulating an opinion. Ability to seek other opinion within the firm when not 100% sure about a situation.”
“A true professional. Best choice for a deal.”
“Friendly and is able to provide answers/assistance for questions asks.”
“Practical and business focussed; very personable and approachable.”
“Ludivine is a real professional who has in-depth knowledge of law and market. She is very client- and deal-oriented.”
“Always very detailed precise and to the point!”
“He understands our needs from a commercial perspective and is innovative in finding sophisticated yet workable solutions.”
“Was good at breaking down complex issues and find workable solutions.”
“Handled the matters smoothly and timely. Very pleasant to work with. Very knowledgeable and practical. Quick and solution oriented, which the clients appreciate. Sensible pricing.”
"Client-oriented; high quality of expertise; accurate and punctual; good management; constructive communication with the counterparty and its counsel."
“The best legal support that we can ask for, deep subject matter expertise and a very good understanding of the business.”
“Always very detailed precise and to the point!”
“His strengths are: a very good knowledge of the matter, customer and result oriented, punctual and efficient.”