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Benjamin Cichostepski-Lesage is an experienced lawyer advising technology and Web companies as well as venture and growth capital investors on corporate transactions for more than 10 years.
Based in Orrick’s Paris office, Benjamin has strong ties with the Silicon Valley, San Francisco, New York and London offices.
Passionate about entrepreneurship and shaping the success of early ventures, Benjamin leads Orrick’s Technology Companies Group in France. He advises companies and investors at various stages from incubation and equity financings to external growth transactions and exits (M&A, IPO), all with deep French-U.S. cross-border expertise. Representative clients include Alan, Algolia, Botify, Comet, Fretlink, LaFourchette, Klaxoon, Neolane, Payfit, Teads.tv, Tempow, Side, Sqreen, Stupeflix, Zenly, as well as Atomico, Battery Ventures, Bessemer Venture Partners, Cathay Capital, Creandum, Idinvest Partners, Iris Capital (Orange Publicis Venture), Lightspeed Venture Partners, Partech Ventures, Raise Capital and XAnge Private Equity.
Orrick’s Technology Companies Group is frequently praised for its high-level expertise, locally and as regards to cross-border operations (“Orrick, the law firm “builder” of Tech Companies”, Capital Finance – Groupe Les Echos, May 4, 2015).
Marie-Laure Combet is a partner in Orrick's Paris Antitrust & Competition Group.
Marie-Laure has been lucky to gain top-notch experience working for years alongside a former French Minister for European Affairs and former top civil servants from either French or European administrations, particularly renowned for their outstanding practice of general EU law or EU and French competition laws.
She now puts this experience at the service of Orrick's clients. The fact that she has always navigated between two legal orders (EU and French), and not only in the field of antitrust, allows her to think outside the box when it comes to finding original solutions.
Marie-Laure regularly advises on competition matters and related types of work, including compliance, advisory/transactional, and contentious matters. Over the years she has developed a significant experience in relation to State aid matters, i.e., handling very high-profile cases notably in the banking sector, the air transportation and energy sectors, as well as general EU law and regulatory matters. Additionally, Marie-Laure has deployed several compliance programs with clients and assisted them in the implementation of their behavioural commitments made to the French Competition Authority. She also assists foreign investors in relation to their reportable direct investments in strategic sectors in France or at EU level.
Prior to joining Orrick, Marie-Laure was Counsel at Clifford Chance Europe LLP in Paris. She previously worked as a lawyer with JeantetAssociés and Debevoise & Plimpton.
Janina focuses on public
procurement (PPP and concessions) and public domain law.
She regularly works on regulatory issues and has a particular focus on the energy sector. She advises both private entities and public entities in the development of projects, with a main focus on renewable energy.
Before joining Orrick, Janina completed several internships with French and other major international law firms and also with an independent administrative authority (ARCEP).
Cyprien Delorme is a lawyer in the Technology Companies Group based at Orrick’s Paris Office
Cyprien assists startups and high growth technology companies in their financing transactions, from formation through exit, and assists them in the development of their activities.
Prior to joining Orrick, Cyprien worked as legal trainee in various law firms such as Jeantet AARPI in Paris, Willkie Farr & Gallagher in Francfort, LPA-CGR in Paris and Arendt & Medernach in Luxembourg.
Nicole Dolenz focuses her practice on international commercial as well as investment arbitration. Dually trained and qualified in civil and common law jurisdictions, she represents an international clientele with a particular emphasis on energy, infrastructure, and construction projects as well as foreign investments.
Prior to joining Orrick, Nicole practiced most recently seven years in the Paris office of a key international law firm, six years with another major law firm in New York, and five years in an Austrian law firm in Vienna.
Her experience extends to most major international arbitration rules, including ICC, SCC, AAA, ICDR, UNCITRAL, and ICSID, as well as local European arbitration institutions.
Nicole also acts as an arbitrator and is a frequent speaker on international commercial and investment arbitration topics.
Clients value her quick understanding of complex technical matters and ability to concisely convey them.She is fluent in German, English, and French and has a working knowledge of Spanish and Portuguese.
Lara Donnedieu de Vabres is an M&A and Private Equity lawyer in Orrick’s Paris office.
Her practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions, corporate, venture capital and private equity, notably on cross-border transactions.
Prior to joining Orrick, Lara worked on corporate and tax matters as a legal intern at Orrick’s Paris office, Jeantet's Paris office and Arsène Taxand's Paris Office.
Marie-Elise focuses on project financing and development in the energy and infrastructure sectors.
Marie-Elise is an Energy & Infrastructure lawyer in Orrick's Paris office. Marie-Elise intervenes on projects across Europe and Africa, with experience in public-private partnerships, energy projects and corporate transactions.Marie-Elise has advised Vinci airports in the acquisition of a global airport portfolio from Ontario Municipal Employees' Retirement System (nine airports and three partial management contracts) and the ongoing potential concession for seven airprots in Cape Verde. Marie-Elise has also advised sponsors on energy infrastructures in West africa.
Elise Durand is a Competition lawyer in Orrick's Paris office.
Before joining Orrick, Elise was a legal intern in International law firms: in the Competition department at Norton Rose Fullbright and at Allen & Overy, in the Litigation & Regulatory department at DLA Piper. She was also a legal intern in the Cartel unit of the Directorate General for Competition at the European Commission and in the Europe Department of the MEDEF.
Olivier Edwards is a lawyer in Orrick’s Paris office, member of the Technology Companies Group. He advises emerging companies and venture capital funds on investment, merger and acquisition matters with an emphasis on cross-border deals.
Olivier has been and is continuously recognized in Chambers & Partners, and has been described by his clients as “a very senior lawyer with vast experience in the merger and acquisition process,” "a talented lawyer and leading figure.“ He is a top-tier venture capital practitioner renowned for his fund-raising prowess and is often called the “godfather" of French venture law.
With a great experience on cross-border merger and acquisitions deals, and joint-venture operations, Olivier has worked with key players of the tech market such as eBay, Sony Ericsson, Softbank, Astanor, Biom'Up, Balyo, Aledia and Partech.
With Matteo Daste, Olivier is a co-founder and co-Chair of Silicon Valley’s Europe Desk which strengthens our unique positioning alongside European companies aiming at Silicon Valley’s capital and technologies and US corporates looking for investment opportunities in Europe.
Before joining Orrick as a Senior Counsel, Olivier was a partner at Gide Loyrette Nouel and was the Head of European Venture department at Morgan Lewis law firm.
Martin Ellie is a Competition lawyer in Orrick's Paris office.
Martin’s practice focuses on all aspects of French and EU competition law, including both transactional and litigation cases: merger control, antitrust, and state aid. He also specializes in distribution and consumer law.
Before joining Orrick as an associate, Martin was a legal intern in the Competition department at Weil, Gotshal & Manges and at Orrick. He was also a legal intern at different firms including LVMH and Société Générale, at different corporate boutique law firms in France and Singapore, and in a Commercial Court.
Gisele Esteves Guedes is an M&A and Private equity lawyer in Orrick’s Paris office.
Gisele helps startups and high growth technology companies successfully raise capital and build their businesses from formation through exit. She has significant M&A expertise following her years as a private equity, mergers and acquisitions and commercial agreements lawyer in Brazil.
Gisele has represented early and late stage companies in venture financings in France and has advised clients in M&A transactions in Brazil.
Before joining Orrick, Gisele worked at Lobo de Rizzo Advogados, BMA Advogados and L. O. Baptista Advogados in São Paulo, Brazil.
Nick’s clients include industrial corporations, government entities, financial institutions and infrastructure investment funds. He also advises on cross-border M&A transactions in his specialist sector areas. He has a particular interest in renewable energy projects.
Nick has been involved on major operations such as the construction of the world’s largest dam, Inga 3, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, a $500 million 144A/Regulation S bond issuance for Millicom International Cellular S.A., a leading telecommunication operator in emerging markets, and the financing by the Agence Française de Développement for a 5.9 MW photovoltaic plant in Benin.
Before joining Orrick, Nick spent 16 years working at another international law firm. He is admitted to the Paris Bar as a Solicitor of England and Wales.