15 October 2013 I Deals and Cases

Bär & Karrer Team Successfully Assists TeliaSonera in ICC Arbitration Case

In an award rendered on 1 September 2011, an ICC arbitral tribunal ordered the Turkish Cukurova Holding to pay Sonera Holding (a subsidiary of TeliaSonera, and at the same time Turkcell's biggest shareholder) USD 932 million plus interest as damages for failure to deliver the outstanding shares in Turkcell Holding. In 2005, the parties had signed a purchase agreement according to which Cukurova would transfer all of the outstanding Class B shares in Turkcell Holding to Sonera. Shortly after entering that agreement, Cukurova claimed to suffer financial difficulties. On 23 May 2005, it publicly announced that it would not proceed with the transaction. Arbitration proceedings were started by Sonera.

In two partial awards, the arbitral tribunal decided that the purchase agreement between the parties was binding and that Cukurova must deliver the shares in kind to Sonera Holding. In their final award, the arbitrators decided that Sonera was entitled to damages for Cukurova's breach of the agreement and for its failure to deliver the outstanding Turkcell shares.

In the ICC proceedings, Sonera Holding was represented by Sullivan & Cromwell LLP, Hergüner Bilgen Özeke Attorney Partnership, and Bär & Karrer. The Bär & Karrer team included Saverio Lembo and Tina Wüstemann.