Paris Team Hosts Workshops to Promote Diversity in French Legal Sector

Les Entretiens de l’Excellence

Sponsored Event | November.30.2018 | 1:30pm - 7:00pm (Central European Standard Time)

Orrick Rambaud Martel

Our Paris office has once again partnered with Les Entretiens de l’Excellence to introduce diverse French law students to a wide range of career paths in the legal industry.

Les Entretiens de l’Excellence promotes access to higher education and equal opportunity among young students from diverse ethnic, socio-economic and geographic backgrounds.

During this year’s event, 34 law professionals – including lawyers, magistrates, in-house lawyers and general counsels, contract managers, compliance officers and data protection officers – took part in an afternoon of small-group workshops, offering career insights and feedback to more than 100 students from 9 law schools. Students also had the opportunity to apply for internships in different legal fields.

Hear directly from the participants:


This is our second year hosting the event, and we look forward to continuing our partnership with Les Entretiens de l’Excellence. Thanks to our team of organizers: Benjamin Cichostepski and Yann Schneller, who is an active member of the organization, with support from Janina Dahmouh, Marie-Elise Douge and Adélaïde Jomier.



  • Technology & Innovation Sector
  • Technology Companies Group
  • Mergers and Acquisitions

Benjamin Cichostepski-Lesage Partner

Parigi; Paris Tech Studio

Ben is the founding partner of Orrick's French Tech Companies Group. For more than 15 years, he has been advising high-potential innovative companies as well as venture and tech growth investors on all their corporate private equity and M&A transactions in France and globally.

As such, he is involved in every stage of their development, from incubation and fundraising to external growth and industrial exits as well as public offerings (IPO, secondary).

Ben has significant experience advising French companies expanding into the United States, and assists them over the full lifecycle of their overseas growth. He also counts a number of American investors and buyers among his clients.

From his first venture deal in 2006, where he represented Lightspeed Venture Partners in Wikio’s Series A, which became Teads, a company he then accompanied for 11 years until its sale to Altice, Ben has led more than 300 corporate tech transactions. He has been involved in the main exit transactions in recent years, particularly those with a franco-american element such as Neolane/Adobe, La Fourchette/TripAdvisor, Stupeflix/GoPro, eNovance/Red Hat, Regaind, Zenly/Snap, Teads/Altice, Getaround/Drivy, Glose/Medium, Sqreen/Datadog, Lalilo/Renaissance Learning, Tempow/Google, Context/Integral Ad Science, Monk/ACV Auctions, Cajoo/Flink, Shipfix/Veson Nautical, Bereal/Voodoo.

Ben's leadership has contributed to placing Orrick as the #1 Venture Capital and Tech Growth practice in France (ranked #1 by Pitchbook in 2021, 2022, 2023 - CF News in 2022, 2023). 

Recognized as a key lawyer in the market in venture capital and tech growth, Ben was ranked No. 1 in the "Top 10 Influential French Venture Capital Lawyers in Private Equity 2023" by Business Today. He was named "Lawyer of the Year" in the 2023 edition of Best Lawyers France in the Venture Capital category. He is also ranked as a Leading Individual by The Legal 500 EMEA in Private Equity - Venture Capital/Growth Capital since 2020 and was voted as the most active tech lawyer in France in 2019 by transaction volume in CF News’ ranking.

Ben is the founder of Orrick Paris Tech Studio, a one of a kind office and working space created in June 2022 and located in the heart of the Paris Tech scene, which is the headquarters of Orrick's French Tech practice.


  • Energy & Infrastructure Sector
  • Energy
  • Infrastructure
  • Africa

Janina Dahmouh Senior Associate


Janina advises on all regulated sectors (transportation, telecommunications, health ...) with a focus on regulatory energy related issues. She has deep knowledge of the specificities of the renewables sector (such as solar, wind (offshore and onshore), biogas and geothermal energy). She works for public entities as well as private entities, including investors in the context of M&A operations both in the infrastructure and energy sectors.

Before joining Orrick in 2016, Janina completed several internships with French and other major international law firms and also with an independent administrative authority in charge of telecommunications.