SEE Legal Energy & Renewables, Utilities & Natural Resources Practice Group at the Vienna Forum on European Energy Law

The SEE Legal energy partners, Armela Lippmann (Maric & Co), Alexander Chatalbashev (BOYANOV & Co.) and Dragoljub Cibulic (BDK Advokati) attended the 7th Vienna Forum on European Energy Law, organised by the Energy Community on 19-20 September 2019 in Vienna.

SEE Legal Banking and Finance Practice Group Visited Frankfurt

Twelve SEE Legal banking and finance partners representing the 10 law firms and 12 SEE jurisdictions attended meetings with colleagues of some of the largest international and local German law firms on 17-19 September 2019 in Frankfurt.

KG Law Firm on EU Geo-blocking Regulation

KG Law Firm’s counsel, Dr. Victoria Mertikopoulou, authored an article on the EU Geo-Blocking Regulation, published in the Greek Law Digest. This article analyses the EU Geo-Blocking Regulation and the ensuing prohibition of Online Sales Discrimination practices, based on customers' nationality, place of residence or of establishment. Prohibiting geo-blocking is one of the pillars of the EU Digital Single Market Strategy. Businesses trading online should comply accordingly. The publication examines the object, scope, main obligations, aspects of non-discrimination related to payment means, passive sales, as well as the e-commerce sector inquiry of the European Commission (2015) and the issuing of a relevant Ministerial Decision in Greece which designates competent enforcement bodies.

Kyriakides Georgopoulos Law Firm on Overview on Cross-border Service Provisions

KG Law Firm’s partner, Effie Mitsopoulou and junior associate, Ioanna Chanoumi authored the Greek chapter in the Overview on Cross-border Service Provisions that was prepared by the European Member Firms of the Employment Law Alliance. The team participated in an overview of reporting and retention requirements, as well as other important information in connection with cross-border personnel deployment in Europe.

New Rules on Foreign Direct Investment: A Balanced Approach or a Step towards the Halt of the Foreign Investments?

KG Law Firm’s partner, Evangelia Dimitropoulou analyses the new EU rules on Foreign Direct Investment and their application by the member states within the EU. Further to long discussions amongst the EU officials to address the concerns that third (non-EU) countries are taking advantage of the openness of the European Union field to promote their industrial policy interests, the European Parliament and the Council have adopted the Regulation no 2019/452 on 21 March 2019 with the aim to establish a legal framework to curb foreign investments in sensitive areas. Although the screening measures shall apply uniformly to all foreign investments, it is common knowledge that the main target of the measures is to halt the prominent position of the Chinese investments in the European Union, which has stand out in terms of number of recent acquisitions over the last year, as highlighted by the Commission Staff Working Paper that has been prepared on September 13, 2018.

CNIL’s Primer on Video Surveillance at Work: Uniontrad Company Decision

On 18 June 2019, the French data protection supervisory authority (“CNIL”) issued a decision on video surveillance at work. The Uniontrad Company case demonstrates that a law specifically regulating the processing of images is not an indispensable prerequisite for reaching a decision. Instead, CNIL relied on the general GDPR rules on proportionality, fair notices, and security of processing. That does not mean that every detail of the video surveillance legal regime obviously flows from the general data protection rules. For example, data protection authorities may differ as regards the format of a data processing notice. But the fundamental rules governing video surveillance at work are clear, even in the absence of a specific regulation.

Link Mobility Group AS (Norway) Signed an Agreement to Buy Five of Allterco’s Telecom Subsidiaries

On 29 June 2019 Bulgaria's Allterco has signed an agreement to sell five of its telecommunications subsidiaries to Norway's LINK Mobility Group for an indicative price of EUR 7.9 million. The final price will be determined on a cash-free/debt-free basis after correction of the companies' preliminary financial statements. The deal concerns Allterco's units in Bulgaria - Teravoice, Tera Communications and Allterpay, as well as its Romania-based subsidiary Teracomm RO and North Macedonia-based Tera Communications DOOEL. Upon completion of the transaction, Allterco will receive 60% of the price in cash. A further 20% will be paid on a deferred basis within two years, while the remaining 20% will be paid by transferring rights for purchase of shares in Victory Partners VIII Norway Holding - the sole owner of LINK Mobility Group. With this deal, Allterco is divesting its entire telecommunications portfolio and will focus on its IoT subsidiaries.

SEE Legal at INTA’s Annual Meeting in Boston

During 18-22 May, the IP Partners Anisa Tomic and Stela Sabeva attended the INTA’s Annual Meeting in Boston - the largest yearly conference for trademark practitioners. As part of their visit and on behalf of the SEE Legal Group, the IP partners hosted a number of meetings with representatives of various law firms that carry substantial weight in the IP world. The meetings were focused on discussing the integrated IP related services offered by SEE Legal and on developing new relationships to expand SEE Legal’s network of colleagues and clients. The SEE Legal partners would like to thank all colleagues who joined the Group at Yotel Boston and look forward to seeing them on another occasion in the near future.

The Google Cases Sequel of the European Commission

Kyriakides Georgopoulos Law Firm analysed the reasons for the European Commission to fine Google a total of EUR 8.25 billion for abuse of dominant position in the respective Google shopping, Google Android and Google AdSense (online advertising) cases.

One Year of GDPR in the EU Countries of SEE Legal

Marking the first anniversary of the introduction of General Data Protection Regulation 2016/679 (the “GDPR”) in the EU, SEE Legal EU members provide a short overview on the current standing of the GDPR application in their respective jurisdictions – Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece, Romania and Slovenia.

Three SEE Legal Members Advise Link Mobility Group AS (Norway) on the Acquisition of Teracomm

Europe’s leading and fastest growing provider of B2C messaging services is expecting competition clearance in Bulgaria in order to proceed to the acquisition of South-Eastern European mobile messaging activities, currently owned by Allterco (a Bulgarian listed company) and operated under the brand “Teracomm”. Teracomm is among the leading providers of B2C messaging services in the region, offering sound technical solutions to respond to the business needs of its clients and partners.

KG Law Firm’s IP Team Presents the New EU Directive on Copyright

On 26 March 2019 the EU Parliament approved the new 'Directive on copyright in the digital single market'. The proposed Directive seeks to govern on a level playing field the use of copyright material on the internet. Normally this would be a technical affair, but the Directive has drawn more controversy than any other Directive in the EU history between internet freedom activists, speaking for freeloading, and those being in favor of a high level of copyright protection.