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October 2018: Conference News & Updates

Dear Members

When I arrived back in my office, from our 38th and most successful (to date) Annual Conference in Athens, I realised for the first time the enormity of the challenge which we face for our next conference in Copenhagen – it will have to be really, really good - fortunately the INSOL Europe team is already working on this and we have introduced some new guidelines for the organising team to ensure we maintain the level of quality we need for these signature events.  Athens really was an excellent event, with great technical content, fabulous organisation and it ended with a real bang (photos to follow). Congratulations to everyone involved in the event and a big thank you to Radu for leaving the organisation in such rude health.
In the coming months I will share with you some of the detail of our Taskforce 2025 project and its implementation, our progress on re-vamping our website and details of our collaboration with other relevant and important organisations.

Alastair Beveridge
President of INSOL Europe







Alastair Beveridge
President of
INSOL Europe


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At the Acropolis: Academic endeavour reaches new heights!

The Academic Forum conference arrived to a warm welcome and sunny skies in the city of Athena, its eponymous protector and also the goddess of wisdom, whose attribute was invoked for attendees at the event. The conference assembled to debate this year’s theme: “Party Autonomy and Third-Party Protection in Insolvency Law”, with a selection of papers exploring the links between the dominant theme of insolvency law and related areas of contract law, property law and corporate law. 

View photos from the event here.

Delegates were met by a fulsome welcome from the Academic Forum Chair, Michael Veder (Radboud Nijmegen) who noted the upcoming anniversaries of the Academic Forum (15 years) and Younger Academics’ Network in Insolvency Law (10 years) underlining the continued importance of academic research to the work of the organisation. A full report will be published on the website and Eurofenix shortly.

Quenching the thirst for knowledge at the Annual Congress in Athens 

Warm weather at the end of the tourist season greeted delegates to the Annual Conference in Athens. Over 430 delegates came to the event, held at the Hilton Hotel, whose rooftop bar boasted unparalleled views of the city skyline and of the Parthenon, which at sunset was lit up forming the backdrop to convivial moments and much networking.

The agenda of the conference itself included updating delegates on progress with the Draft Directive on Preventive Restructuring and the bedding in of the Recast European Insolvency Regulation, now seeing the first examples of cases come through in the jurisprudence.

Photos from the conference are now available to view in several galleries here with a full report to come in the next edition of Eurofenix.

There were also reminders of contemporary events, the emergence of Greece from austerity, the challenges posed by Brexit and continuing insolvency law reforms throughout Europe. There was also, at the conference, the unusual or hitherto unexplored, the relationship of law and economics for starters in a Friday panel and spyware and surveillance technologies at the cutting edge of fraud detection.

Added to the mix, with breakout sessions devoted to NPLs, automotive industry issues and asset sales, there was sufficient to regale the thirst of delegates for new information and knowledge. When eventually the Gala Dinner brought events to a close, three very productive days seemed to have passed by too quickly.

A full report will follow in the next edition Eurofenix.

Sharing the YMG spirit in Athens


Almost 100 people shared the YMG-spirit at the Young Members Group drinks reception in the Galaxy Bar in Athens, with stunning views overlooking the Acropolis and over to the shores of the sprawling city. This was a great occasion to share with the Young Members of INSOL Europe and new Young Members, and to host the President of the Insolvency commission of AIJA, Héctor Sbert. Vist the Young Members Group page for more information and updates.

Council Elections Results, Changes and Retirements

Executive Officers: At the close of the Athens Congress this month, Radu Lotrean (Romania)  stepped down as President to become Immediate Past President, Alastair Beveridge (UK) became the new President, Piya Mukherjee (Denmark)  became the new Deputy President and Marcel Groenewegen (Netherlands) was elected by Council as incoming Vice President. Chris Laughton (UK) remains as Treasurer and Caroline Taylor (UK) as Director of Administration.
Council: There were also several changes to the structure of Council. As a reminder, countries with 30 or more members are entitled to a reserved seat on Council and the following situation arose this year:

  • A vacancy became available for Spain and France’s reserved seats as Vicente Estrade and Marc Senechal retired from Council.   
  • Frank Tschentscher came to the end of his first 3 year term of office holding the reserved seat for Germany and agreed to stand for re-election against other nominations.
  • Poland lost their reserved seat on Council as membership numbers fell below 30. 

Therefore, nominations from members in Spain, France and Germany were invited for candidates from their own country. Following the nomination and election process, Adrian Thery was duly elected to the reserved seat for Spain for his first 3 year term of office, Jean Baron to the reserved seat for France for his first 3 year term of office and Frank Tschentscher to the reserved seat for Germany for his second 3 year term of office.

One non-reserved seat vacancy on Council also became available (which may be occupied by any country) as Piya Mukherjee (Denmark) had been appointed as Vice President in the previous year. 2 nominations were received and following the election process, the successful candidate was Laurent Le Pajolec (representing Poland).    
Each year, Council may co-opt or re co-opt  a maximum of 8 members to Council and this year the following members were appointed: Michael Veder (Netherlands), as chair of the Academic Forum, Catherine Ottaway (France), as  representative of INSOL International and Constitution specialist, Wolf Waschkuhn (UK), as co-chair of  STF2025, Steffen Koch (Germany) as co-chair of the Turnaround Wing and co-chair of STF2025, Evert Verwey (Netherlands), as co-chair of EECC, Robert van Galen (Netherlands), as EU co-chair and Brexit matters, Alberto Nunez-Lagos as co-chair of the Turnaround Wing and our newcomer Georges-Louis Harang (France), as co-chair of the Young Members Group. 

Honorary Membership for outstanding meritorious service on behalf of the Association was awarded to Heinz Vallender (Germany), chair of the Judicial Wing, who steps down after 13 years of service and also Alberto Nunez-Lagos (Spain), Past President and co-chair of the Turnaround Wing.
Secretariat: Wendy Cooper retired from the Secretariat and was duly thanked for her 11 years of service. Wendy will be missed by all colleagues and members who knew her during her time as INSOL Europe’s Membership and Conference Registrations Co-ordinator and we wish her well for the future. Going forward, recently appointed Event Manager, Harriet Taylor, will take charge of Conference Registrations and Hannah Denney will take charge of Membership, to become Sponsorship & Membership Manager.


Special Offers for Members of INSOL Europe

We have arranged many special offers for our members, including exclusive discounts on publications and events as well as special rates for advertising in Eurofenix, our quarterly journal. These are often time limited and updated regularly on the Members Offers section of the website.

Offers are changed regularly and currently include:

  • Limited offer on registration fees at the 2018 Private Equity Awards, Paris
  • 20% discount off selected titles from Oxford University Press
  • 10% discount off an individual subscription to Global Restructuring Review
  • A discounted 'Pro' profile on SpeakerHub
  • Practical Law - access to Global Guides
Read more


INSIDE Story: Latvia - The best insolvency law in Europe?

At the INSOL Europe event in Riga in May 2018, the Latvian Justice Minister boasted of the newly overhauled Latvian Insolvency Law, which supposedly now forms “the best regulation in Europe”. That prompts the question whether the new Latvian regulation is indeed an exemplary feast or whether the statement was an exercise in promoting an appreciation of the Government’s (and the Minister’s own) work.

It is true that, over the past few years, the Latvian government has been trying hard to bring about a clean-up of the realm of insolvency and to deliver a decisive blow to wide-spread abuse and unlawfulness associated with insolvency proceedings in Latvia.

This concern reflects in part the alarm bells sounded by the European Commission, the World Bank and other international institutions about the state of the insolvency environment in Latvia. Their view has been that rapid action is desperately needed to improve the business climate in Latvia. Even the Foreign Investors’ Council, a Latvian organisation, declared prominently in 2016 that some Latvian insolvency administrations have too close a connection to the world of organised crime.

Indulis Balmaks, Lawyer with Rödl & Partner in Riga, examines the evidenceRead the full Inside Story and other articles here.

If you would like the opportunity to have your Inside Story published in a future edition, please email Communicatons Manager, Paul Newson for details.

Funding awarded for the JCOERE Project

The European Commission has awarded funding under the JUST/2017/Action Grants programme to a project led by Professor Irene Lynch Fannon, a noted academic at the University College Cork writes Paul J. Omar, Technical Research Coordinator, INSOL Europe. The project, titled Judicial Co-Operation supporting Economic Recovery in Europe (or JCOERE for short), also involves the University of Florence, Titu Maiorescu University Bucharest and INSOL Europe.

Work on the project, which is scheduled to last two years, will focus on rules and practice which might present obstacles to the co-operation obligation referred to in Articles 42 and 57 of the Recast EIR. Given the prospective adoption of the Draft Directive on preventive restructuring in 2019, the project will analyse current procedural, substantive and other rules existing in a number of member states that might impede the way in which courts communicate and cooperate with each other.

The dissemination of information and outcomes is an important part of this project which will facilitate improved awareness of co-operation and communication provisions in insolvency texts and make available practical experience which might inform future steps to be taken by practitioners and judges in the administration of cross-border cases.


The UK-European cross-border insolvency after Brexit

The framework for the post-Brexit relationship between the UK and the EU is not yet certain. However, in the field of cross-border insolvency INSOL Europe offers a preferred arrangement and an alternative. Preferably, the UK will remain subject to the European Insolvency Regulation, whether on the back of a bilateral agreement between the UK and the EU27 or otherwise. The alternative may be for the EU to adopt the UNCITRAL Model Law to add to the current cross-border insolvency regime.

The detail of INSOL Europe’s view is set out in a paper, Bankruptcy after Brexit.

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Special offer: We can offer 20% discount off the registration fee for a limited number of INSOL Europe members. Contact Paul Newson for details.

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We welcome feedback, news and story ideas for future newsletters. 

Please send your suggestions to Paul Newson, Communications Manager,

INSOL Europe, P O Box 7149, Clifton, Nottingham. NG11 6WD. Tel/Fax : +44 115 8780584
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Disclaimer: This newsletter is sent to members of INSOL Europe. No responsibility legal or otherwise is accepted by INSOL Europe for any errors, omissions or otherwise. The opinions expressed in the articles that appear are not necessarily shared by any representative of INSOL Europe.