Simont Braun assists AION in building the new next generation Challenger Bank

Brussels, 10 March 2020  |  Simont Braun successfully assisted AION in building an entirely digital and mobile bank, making it the first of its kind next generation Challenger Bank in Belgium. AION has officially launched its services on 3 March 2020.

AION is the former Banca Monte Pasci Belgio and was purchased by the American fund Warburg Pincus in 2018 in order to transform it into a fully digital financial services provider. AION offers an unrivalled broad spectrum of financial products and services, and beyond banking services, benefitting from an impressive technology and IT support.

Simont Braun’s team has been involved for over a year in developing the new digital products and services in close and successful collaboration with AION’s team,” comments Philippe De Prez, Partner at Simont Braun in Digital Finance and Financial services. “We had the pleasure to collaborate with a very motivated and talented group of people at AION, all working towards an ambitious goal. It has been an intense ride during which we often explored innovative solutions which were so far not available on the Belgian market. This is a space where our team is at its very best. We would like to sincerely thank our clients for this great opportunity to both assist and learn.”

Simont Braun’s Digital Finance Team advised AION on the compliance of their services and products with the applicable regulation, was involved in numerous contract drafting, screen-by-screen compliance analysis and negotiations with the regulator.

The Simont Braun team was led by partner Philippe De Prez, with the assistance of partners Catherine Houssa and Axel Maeterlinck, counsel Thomas Derval, and associates Sander Van Loock, Charlotte De Thaye, Amine Chafik and David-Alexandre Sauvage.

For any question, please contact Nelly Chammas (Marketing & Communication Manager).

Simont Braun assists TransferWise with their arrival in Belgium

Simont Braun successfully assisted TransferWise, the global technology company that moves money internationally, in obtaining a licence as a payment institution in Belgium. TransferWise officially launched its Brussels operations in October 2019.

TransferWise is an international money platform. The company decided to establish as a payment institution in Belgium to continue serving their European customers as before, even in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

In this framework, Simont Braun’s Digital Finance Team assisted TransferWise with their licence application procedure before the National Bank of Belgium and the incorporation of their Belgian corporate entity. Simont Braun also advised the FinTech company on connected financial regulatory, corporate and labour law matters.

Our Digital Finance Team is happy to have contributed to this significant step in TransferWise’s development strategy in Europe. This licence is also the achievement of a fine-tuned collaboration, both with TransferWise and the National Bank of Belgium,” says Philippe De Prez, Partner.

The Simont Braun team was led by partners Philippe De Prez and Catherine Houssa (Digital Finance), with the assistance of partner Axel Maeterlinck (Corporate M&A).

From left to right: Philippe De Prez (Partner at Simont Braun), Catherine Houssa (Partner at Simont Braun), Gordon Youngson (Head of legal Europe at TransferWise), Axel Maeterlinck (Partner at Simont Braun), and Anna Doyle (EU Compliance lead at TransferWise).

Simont Braun successfully assists Bank Degroof Petercam in a wealth management dispute

Béatrice Thieffry, Sandrine Hirsch and Rafaël Jafferali were mentioned in L’Echo for successfully assisting Bank Degroof Petercam before the Brussels Court of Appeal in a wealth management dispute.

The full article is available here.

Source: L’Echo – Nicolas Keszei – 10 October 2019

This article has been reproduced with the consent of the editor, all rights reserved. Any further use must be specifically authorised by the rights management company Copiepresse: info@copiepresse.be 

 

Simont Braun assists Test Achats in its class action against Ryanair

Simont Braun is representing Test Achats which seeks to receive compensation for passengers who were victims of repeated strikes by the Ryanair staff in summer 2018. The total compensation is estimated at € 16 million.

Simont Braun filed the collective action this morning with the French-speaking Business Court of Brussels (see the press coverage by the RTBF at 6’04” and the VRT at 8’30”).

We now expect a judgment on the admissibility of the claim. A time-period will then start to allow Test Achats and Ryanair to negotiate. If they reach an agreement, the latter will be subject to approval by the Court. If not, the case will be pleaded on the merits.

This class action is the 8th of its kind in Belgium since the entry into force of the law in 2014. It will raise landmark consumer law questions and high-end cross-border procedural issues.

The Simont Braun team representing Test Achats is led by Rafaël Jafferali and includes Charles-Edouard Lambert and Marc Baetens-Spetschinsky.

Needless to say, we will keep you informed of the next developments.

Simont Braun assisted Rewe in one of the largest mergers in the European retail sector

Simont Braun has advised Rewe, the second largest German supermarket chain, on the Belgian legal aspects of the purchase of Lekkerland/Conway, a major wholesaler specialised in consumption on the go, supplying gas stations, kiosks, convenience stores, etc. The transaction was signed on 28 May 2019 and the parties are now waiting for clearance by the competition authorities.

As both Rewe Group and Lekkerland are active in several European countries, their merger implied substantial cross-border aspects and the active cooperation of several top tier law firms, principally in Germany (lead), Belgium, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Spain.

Simont Braun’s Corporate M&A team advised Rewe on the Belgian legal aspects of the transaction, in particular by carrying out a legal due diligence on the Belgian target companies and assisted on the related legal and regulatory questions surrounding the transaction.

Our team is delighted to have contributed to such a landmark European cross-border transaction, in close cooperation with Taylor Wessing Germany (lead firm). Our demonstrated capabilities to act in the framework of international transactions make us a go-to law firm for such matters on the Belgian market. Our integrated multidisciplinary structure and strong linguistic skills were clearly a plus,” highlights Axel Maeterlinck, partner in Simont Braun’s Corporate M&A department.

The Rewe Group generated a turnover over € 61 billion last year, courtesy of its 360,000 employees in 22 European countries. With the merger with Lekkerland, a new European powerhouse is born in the convenience segment. Lekkerland has about 4,900 employees in Europe and generated a turnover of € 12.4 billion euro last financial year. In Belgium, the group operates under the name Conway and its 400 people generate a turnover of € 1.5 billion (source: www.retaildetail.be).

The Simont Braun team was led by partner Axel Maeterlinck, together with partners Fernand de Visscher, Steven Callens and the assistance of counsel Pierre Van Achter and associates Tine Bauwens, Laura Grauer, Julie Kever and Peter Blomme.

Simont Braun secures major victory for Wolu TV against Telenet

Simont Braun (Emmanuel Cornu and Thomas Derval) secured an important victory for Wolu TV ASBL against Telenet.

Our lawyers successfully represented the association before the Brussels Business Court in a compensation claim brought by the telecom company.

Read more in an article by Nicolas Keszei published yesterday in L’Echo.

Simont Braun assists Deminor in the Fortis case settled for € 1.3 billion

On 13 July, the amended settlement of € 1.3 billion reached between Ageas (former Fortis) and Deminor was declared binding by the Amsterdam Court of Appeal. It is the largest settlement of investors’ claims in Europe so far. 

Read Press Release in PDF

Simont Braun defended the interests of the investors (more than 5,000) federated by Deminor, who sought compensation for the loss suffered on their Fortis shares due to the misleading information disclosed by Fortis between May 2007 and the bankruptcy of the Group in October 2008.

Simont Braun’s team assisted Deminor in the collective action launched in January 2010 before the Brussels Commercial Court. It was one of the landmark judicial procedures after the dismantling of the Fortis Group and, due to the complexity and crucial financial issues of this case, ten hearings were scheduled.

After lengthy negotiations with representatives of Ageas, the parties reached a first settlement of € 1.2 billion that the Court of Amsterdam refused to approve. Ageas submitted an amended proposition of € 1.3 billion which was enacted by the Court last Friday and declared binding.

This is a landmark settlement in the European securities litigation landscape and a significant achievement for the investors who will get compensation for their losses,” says Catherine Houssa, Partner in Banking & (Digital) Finance, who handled the case. “This collective action was also a premiere in Belgium and presented complex issues regarding multiple aspects of judicial, financial and tort law.”

The Simont Braun team which advised on the case was led by Catherine Houssa (Banking & (Digital) Finance) and included partner Rafaël Jafferali (Dispute resolution) and associates Charles-Edouard Lambert and Lucien Standaert.

The Belgian tax treatment of income stemming from the assigment of license of copyrights

Simont Braun recently assisted one of its clients in obtaining a ruling from the Ruling Commission in which an extensive and refined application was made of the interesting Belgian tax treatment with respect to personal income received from the assignment or license of copyrights.

The distinction between the compensation received by an individual in exchange for professional services rendered and the compensation received for assigning or licensing copyrights is made on the basis of a flat percentage (ranging between 5 and 25%).

The specific percentages as accepted by the Ruling Commission for each specific job description are based on a factual analysis of the individual tasks and creativity required for the respective job descriptions, as well as on the market value of the creative results which are protected by copyright.

Full article available in French and Dutch

For any question, please contact Fernand de Visscher: fdv@simontbraun.eu

Simont Braun’s Digital Finance Team assists mozzeno with the launch of its innovative platform

Brussels, March 2017

Simont Braun assisted the Brussels-based FinTech mozzeno on the launch of the first Belgian digital platform enabling individuals to participate indirectly in the funding of other individuals’ consumer loans.

The loans are financed through securitization, by issuing notes to which the investors subscribe.

In such a highly regulated sector, our team prepared the prospectus related to the continuous public offering of notes and ensured that mozzeno obtained the Belgian financial supervisor’s approval. We also collaborated with our clients towards maximum limitation of the potential risks for the investors.

Assisting mozzeno with the launch of its activities in Belgium demonstrates the sharp capabilities of our Digital Finance team, which is a pioneer amongst its peers in the quickly-evolving market of FinTechs”, comments Catherine Houssa, Partner and head of Simont Braun’s Digital Finance team.

Simont Braun’s team which advised mozzeno is comprised of partner Catherine Houssa, counsel Philippe De Prez and associate Lucien Standaert.

Media Contact: Nelly Chammas – nelly.chammas@simontbraun.eu – 02/543.70.80