Ilyashev & Partners has a three-pronged approach, whose focus is on large complex bankruptcy cases involving litigation, as well as large scale cross-border insolvency disputes and sanation (financial rehabilitation). The experienced practice team has great expertise in handling the bankruptcies of distressed industrial debtors and state enterprises. It represented creditors in Ukrainian courts in the multi-billion dollar bankruptcy of the Alchevsk Iron and Steel Works, which involved a large number of stakeholders in a number of jurisdictions. It has been involved in the ongoing bankruptcy procedure of Promoboronexport across several jurisdictions. The firm also represents interest of creditors — Indumet Limited, Indumet SA in the course of the bankruptcy and financial rehabilitation of Dneprovsky Integrated Iron & Steel Works, with a huge monetary value of USD 5.7 billion in the case. The firm’s banking clients Alfa-Bank and BTA Bank ensure a consistent workflow for its lender-side practice. The firm has a multi-country network of offices to continue providing support in insolvency disputes involving several jurisdictions. Its team works continually on complex cases for banking field representatives. The firm added new projects of cross-border bankruptcies. The Moscow office showed rapid expansion and success in precedent-setting cases by handling significant bankruptcies of developers and infrastructure companies. Vadym Kizlenko is highly active across project work and in the community of insolvency practitioners. Andriy Konoplya has a long-lasting presence in this practice. Lead partner Roman Marchenko plays a key role in long-lasting bankruptcy cases.

The EQUITY law firm has one of the largest portfolios of insolvency litigation, being known for representing major industrial financial groups and fast growing practice of banking resolution. The firm reduced the liabilities of the Azovmash group of companies throughout insolvency litigation with ten banks, which now is valued at USD 850 million. This past year the team acted for the group in litigation against Alfa-Bank. The firm has made inroads into NPLs, foreclosure of mortgaged property and initiating insolvency proceedings. It advised some of the largest finance companies in Ukraine, including LLC Finance Company, LLC Expert Invest, LLC Finance Company Helios. It also successfully protected the interests of Ukrincom PJSC (formerly Ukrinbank) in its dispute with the National Bank of Ukraine and state-run Deposit Guarantee Fund over recognition of the decisions of regulators to declare Ukrincom insolvent as unlawful and to cancel them. It involved the firm receiving instructions in proceedings with debtors. Oleg Malinevskiy plays a strategic role in practice development, repeatedly recognized for his proficient solutions in insolvency disputes. Dmytro Tylipskyi is the key counsel in large-scale representation of Azovmash group. Olexiy Stepanenko is an important practitioner working on banking insolvency projects.

Alekseev, Boyarchukov and Partners is among the key bankruptcy-focused teams in Ukraine, retained to act across the whole procedure. The firm has a long-standing track record in representation of creditors in the bankruptcies of corporate debtors. The firm represents Investohills Vesta as a creditor in the bankruptcy cases of Rosava, a vehicle tire manufacturer, and Bila Tserkva Heat Power Plant. Another notable case is acting for Alfa-Bank as a creditor in the bankruptcy of Gadyachsyr LLC. The practice portfolio is rich in numerous insolvency disputes, involving debt recovery litigation against distressed companies, appealing against auction results, etc. Its client roster includes Sberbank, Ukrgasbank, Geneva Financial Company, Hotel Property LLC. Endorsed for his creative approach Sergey Boyarchukov garners praise for his exceptional dedication to bankruptcy and regulation of the profession. Maksym Boyarchukov is another important figure in this practice.

The domestic firm L.I. Group rapidly extends its bankruptcy practice portfolio with a range of bankruptcy proceedings initiated by big Ukrainian industrial companies, and is even more present in powerful cases. The firm is known for its strong performance on the creditors side, being hired by banks and financial companies. In 2020 the firm was enlisted in the large-scale bankruptcy of the Corporation Industrial Union of Donbas. It also represented Investohills Vesta in the bankruptcy of several companies, and is involved in the bankruptcy proceedings of PJSC Tomatsky Forging and Stamping Plant and turbine maker PJSC Uzhhorod Turbogaz. The team also advises on developing the financial rehabilitation plans of debtor companies. The practice has two partners on board. Artur Megeria is active in recent representations and highly visible on the market. Mykola Kovalchuk is an active litigator in insolvency cases. The team was strengthened by the arrival of Yurii Moiseiev, who joined the firm in 2020 from the Ministry of Justice. Peers strongly endorsed him as a skilled professional.

The large bankruptcy practice at Ario Law Firm acts on both sides of proceedings, handling liquidation procedures and resolving criminal aspects that arise within debt recovery matters and corporate conflicts. The firm is particularly known for participating in resonant cases, development of restructuring plans and insolvency disputes, assets sales and working on financial rehabilitation. The bankruptcy team works closely with the criminal defense team, handling sophisticated cases involving criminal violations at different stages of a procedure. The resonant bankruptcy of the Ocean Shipyard in Mykolaiv, coupled with criminal proceedings, continued in 2020, when the Supreme Court of Ukraine upheld the legality of the auction held in 2018. It also represented the Kyiv-based Lybid Hotel as a debtor. Julian Khorunzhyi constantly enjoys the praise of the market and acts on the pro-bono project regarding the bankruptcy of physical persons. Iryna Serbin is known for her major case as an insolvency administrator of the Ocean Shipyard. Other partners of the sizeable team are partners Oleksii ­Voronko, Andriy Fylyk and Ruslan ­Sydorovych.

LCF Law Group possesses a well-regarded bankruptcy practice, acting for both sides. The team has a solid clientele of banks and financial companies, advising them in their capacities of creditors, and significant domestic borrowers. The firm represented the administrator of the Ocean Shipyard in Mykolaiv in a bankruptcy case, inter alia, established the legality of actions throughout the full procedure of bankruptcy. The firm acted for Premiori LLC as a creditor in a ­bankruptcy case involving tire maker Rosava. Another area of focus includes insolvency litigation in terms of corporate conflicts. Selected clients include Alfa-Bank, Prominvestbank, First Ukrainian International Bank (FUIB), VR Global Partners, Allianz Ukraine, Grawe Ukraine, Kontraktovyi Dom (Easy Pay), Bunge Ukraine, Ovostar, Ristone Holding, Lauffer Group, Cargill, Fozzy Group, TNT Express Worldwide, Scatec Solar Solutions, Holleman. Partner and practice head Olena Volianska kept her active role in the community of insolvency practitioners and across project work.

Sokolovskyi & Partners has a well-recognized practice supporting bankruptcy proceedings and handling liability crisis management. It acts regularly for both debtors and creditors, and is often retained by local clients. The workload of the firm includes asset disposition and sale within bankruptcy procedure, administration of insolvency and liquidation procedures. Insolvency disputes are another area of focus. The firm’s criminal practice contributes to avoiding violations at various stages of bankruptcy procedures. The practice is headed by Ivan Balytskyi.

Domestic bankruptcy boutique ­Khomenko, Pita & Partners provides a complete offering, being especially preferred by the corporate sector — namely the agrarian, energy, manufacturing, hospitality, technology companies. Earlier, the team gained notable experience in supporting bankruptcies of state-owned companies. The firm continues to act in complex bankruptcies of groups of companies and often handles representation in different Ukrainian regions. For example, the firm works on a bankruptcy of the network of hotels in Odesa and Odesa Region. With his long-standing commitment to this practice Oleksandr Khomenko is a respected practitioner endorsed for providing tailored advice. Ivan Zakharko is named a key practitioner.

Gramatskiy & Partners covers all aspects of litigation work in bankruptcy procedures, being retained by creditors, shareholders, insolvency officers. The scope of work includes creditors’ committees, appeal against stakeholder’s actions, support for liquidation procedures and amicable settlements, exits from bankruptcy procedures and post-procedure disputes. Clients emanate from construction, engineering, industrial manufacturing, technology. The firm provides support to the PJSC Plant Keramic on restoring commercial activities and an out-of-court settlement. Other public clients in bankruptcy last year included Plant Quant, Zolotoy Mandarin Group, Vinotex, Plant of Rubber And Latex Products, Saphir-Invest LLC, Global Space Management Limited. Andrii Trembich is the practice head.

Domestic law firm ADER HABER expands its bankruptcy practice with instruction of commercial banks, seeking representation in insolvency procedures of their debtors, as well as debt recovery procedures from debtors, including execution of court rulings. Other areas of focus include bankruptcy of individuals. The practice is headed by revered figure and former judge Oleksandr Udovychenko.

Absolute Law Agency enjoys an established following among commercial banks and financial companies. For example, VTB Bank enlisted it for representation in the course of bankruptcies of joint venture Iboya (currently under liquidation procedure) and Dnipro Plant Mineral Fertilizers (asset disposal stage). The Mustang Finance financial company enlisted the practice as a creditor in several bankruptcy cases and the First Ukrainian International Bank in the bankruptcy of Lendest Ltd. It continues to act for the Plant of Gas Discharge Lamps in its ongoing liquidation. Oleksandr Bondarchuk is a vivid practitioner particularly known for representing banks. Oleksandr Hladii is another key figure.

Domestic bankruptcy boutique Nobili is adept at supporting bankruptcy proceedings of local borrowers. It gives legal advice to oil trader Rompetrol Ukraine regarding its ongoing bankruptcy. Other clients include PJSC Uzhhorod Turbogaz, the state-owned Diproverf State Design Institute, LLC Bigben, PJSC Dneprovsky Integrated Iron & Steel Works. The firm also represents creditors, inter alia, acts for MAS SIDS Ukraine LLC and Syngent LLC in the bankruptcy procedure of Trading House Seeds. Natalia Tyschenko, managing partner, who’s highly visible on the market, is the main figure.

The litigation practice of AVELLUM, reinforced in 2020, includes a bankruptcy workload, with the team working mainly for creditors supporting their claims against Ukrainian companies undergoing bankruptcy proceedings. The firm is also hired to advise on the Ukrainian law aspects of cross-border insolvencies, and also acts in cases when a creditor’s claims are based on English law regulated agreements. The firm continued to represent the world’s leading investment funds as owners of the majority of notes issued by Mriya Agro Holding in the insolvency proceedings of the Mriya Group, where the team handles 11 simultaneous bankruptcy proceedings. Andriy Fortunenko is the key bankruptcy practitioner. Vadim Medvedev is lead partner in litigation.

The bankruptcy practice of full-service firm Eterna Law acts for creditors in initiating bankruptcy proceedings, investment companies in court proceedings for financial recovery, advising on settlement agreement and financial rehabilitation. Denys Kytsenko acted as lead partner[1].

The focus of the corporate recovery and insolvency practice at GOLAW is representing creditors. Among ongoing cases is representation of UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia a.s. in the bankruptcy proceedings of PJSC Creative as a borrower and PJSC Creative Group as a guarantor under a loan agreement. The team has particular experience in preventing fictitious bankruptcies and preventing unfair actions by distressed debtors, assignment of receivables. Iryna ­Kalnytska works on the majority of cases.

The full-service firm Arzinger has a strong standalone bankruptcy practice focused on representation of banks, financial institutions and international hedge funds in insolvency proceedings of Ukrainian corporates. Anton Molchanov, counsel, has been endorsed by peers for his extensive work on cross-border insolvency projects and high level of expertise.[2]

The poll revealed a number of law firms and bankruptcy commissioners in the regions: Matviiv & Partners and Andriy Nadlonok in Lviv; Serhii Udovychenko and Vitaliy Sokotun in Rivne; Pravova ­Constanta and Mykola Lukashuk in Dnipro; Kapustin & Partners, ­Volodymyr ­Kapustin and Globus Law Firm in Kharkiv.

 

[1] In March 2021 he joined State Enterprise Ukroboronprom.

[2] The firm has not provided submission for the current research.