Richard Gwynne

Richard Gwynne

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Stephenson Harwood LLP
1 Finsbury Circus
United Kingdom

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T: +44 20 7809 2321

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Chambers UK 2012

Richard is a litigation partner and has extensive experience of all types of commercial litigation and arbitration, frequently of a cross-border nature.

He has a very wide ranging client base but with particular experience of banking and finance related disputes, shareholder and joint venture disputes and the management of cross-border multi-jurisdictional litigation.  Richard is a member of the ICC UK Committee in Banking Technique and Practice and was recently involved in negotiations with the UK Government relating to the impact of the Rome I Regulation in particular on banking and trade finance issues.

He is a contributor to International Execution Against Judgment Debtors (Oxford University Press) in relation to the enforcement of foreign judgments in England and Wales.

Richard has wide experience of banking and finance related litigation.

He has acted in many cases involving complex loan structures, derivatives, letters of credit and guarantees.  He acts in complex recovery actions on behalf of banks and has much experience of managing international banking litigation involving actions in jurisdictions other than the UK. 

As examples, in the recent past he has advised UBS and Societe General in a high profile case involving issues relating to the refusal of consent to transfer interests under a €500 million facility; a major European bank in relation to a recovery action involving a substantial fraud in Switzerland, Germany and England; a major Scandinavian bank in issues arising in relation to the insolvency of an Icelandic bank; and Standard Bank plc in relation to claims due under a forward sale agreement, including a reported decision on anti-suit injunctions.

He writes and lectures regularly on issues concerned to the banking and trade finance sector.

Richard has particular expertise in disputes arising out of mergers and acquisitions and shareholder and joint venture issues.  Recent examples include acting for an investor to an investment agreement involving a co-investment in a bank in Eastern Europe (following a contested arbitration that led to an award of €30m in favour of the investor); and advising investors in relation to issues relating to investments in Russia and the former CIS and co-ordinating litigation / arbitration arising out of such investments.

Richard also acted for the major shareholders in BSB Holdings Limited (Pearson, Granada Group Plc and Chargeurs) in relation to a section 459 petition brought by a minority shareholder arising out of the merger between BSB and Sky in 1991, which was dismissed at trial with costs.

Richard has wide experience of international arbitration under the rules of the major institutional bodies (including the ICC, LCIA , UNCITRAL, Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre and ARIAS).

Recent cases include acting for an investor in relation to an arbitration involving a co-investment in a Eastern European Bank leading to an award in the sum of €30m; acting for a syndicate of banks in an arbitration involving the loss of cattle and livestock in the Middle East; and acting for an international oil company in an arbitration involving coverage issues under directors and officers insurance policies in the sum of US$50 million.

Richard also has considerable experience of the enforcement of arbitration awards in the UK and issues arising under the New York Convention.  He regularly advises on issues relating to jurisdiction, conflicts of laws and matters relating to the drafting and content of arbitration clauses.

Richard has a wide experience of co-ordinating (or 'quarter-backing') complex international disputes involving litigation in a number of jurisdictions other than the UK.

In particular he has considerable experience of Russian related and litigation and arbitration.  Some examples include acting for a Swedish listed investment fund in claims against entities related to NG Slevneft (a joint venture between Sibneft and TNK); acting in a multi-party shareholders dispute relating to a substantial Middle Eastern based construction company involving proceedings in England, Switzerland and the Cayman Islands; acting for investors in the Russian TGK-4 Affair, involving litigation in both Russia and Cyprus; and acting for a major European bank in litigation relating to a substantial fraud in Switzerland, Germany and the UK.

Richard also has considerable experience of the issues which arise out of letters of credit and other trade finance issues and the cross-border litigation issues which arise.