This profile in arbitration has a special format. We had intended to focus solely on Elliott Geisinger who heads the international arbitration group of the Swiss law firm of Schellenberg Wittmer as Global Chair. When contacted by the Editor of Newton Arbitration with respect to the possibility of featuring a Profile in Arbitration, Elliott suggested that we should rather focus on the two Global Vice Chairs, Christopher Boog and Philippe Bärtsch. Consequently, this Profile will introduce Elliott and then focus on the stars of the next generation of the arbitration team of Schellenberg Wittmer, Christopher and Philippe.
By way of introduction, Schellenberg Wittmer Ltd should be considered as a leading Swiss firm for contentious matters. In particular, they have significant expertise in commercial arbitrations, particularly regarding engineering and construction as well as energy and commodities.
Elliott Geisinger (Global Chair)
Elliott Geisinger has acted as counsel and arbitrator in over 120 international arbitrations in complex commercial disputes involving inter alia international construction contracts, consortia and joint venture agreements, sponsorship contracts, and sales and distribution contracts. He has also advised foreign States and Swiss corporations in investment disputes.
Elliott is particularly specialized in construction and engineering matters.
Elliott regularly represents clients in arbitration-related court proceedings. Elliott has represented parties before the Swiss Supreme Court in several landmark cases.
According to clients he is very careful with the details of an arbitration, but never forgets the big picture.
Elliott has been President of the Swiss Arbitration Association (ASA) since 2014, having been elected to the ASA Board in 2007 and becoming ASA Vice-President in 2007. He is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the Foundation for International Arbitration Advocacy. Elliott is one of four arbitration experts currently advising the Swiss government on the on-going revision of the Swiss law of international arbitration. He has authored several publications in the fields of international arbitration and private international law.
Elliott is highly recognized and ranked for his work as counsel and arbitrator by leading international directories such as Chambers & Partners, Legal 500, GAR, Expert Guides, ILO and Who’s Who Legal. They describe him as “a high-caliber arbitration counsel who is a fantastic technician and construction specialist.”
Dr. Christopher Boog FCIArb (Global Vice Chair)
Christopher Boog, FCIArb, is a partner and one of the two Global Vice Chairs of Schellenberg Wittmer’s International Arbitration Practice Group. Christopher divides his time between the firm’s Zürich and Singapore offices and is Managing Partner of Schellenberg Wittmer Pte. Ltd in Singapore.
Christopher has extensive experience handling complex international arbitrations seated in common law and civil law jurisdictions worldwide. He has acted as counsel and arbitrator in over 60 international arbitrations, involving a wide array of matters under many different laws. His main areas of specialization include investment, sports, construction, engineering, mining, energy, pharmaceutical and life sciences, and automotive. He also sits as arbitrator in seats throughout Europe and Asia.
Christopher regularly publishes and speaks on topics related to arbitration, and teaches international arbitration at the EBS Law School in Wiesbaden, Germany.
He is a member of the Arbitration Court of the Arbitration Institution of the Swiss Chamber and a Vice Chair of the IPBA International Construction Projects Committee. Additional appointments include the SIAC User’s Council, the ICC Task Force on Emergency Arbitrator Proceedings and the drafting committee for the revision of the DIS Arbitration Rules.
Christopher graduated with honors from the law schools at the Universities of Fribourg and Amsterdam. He holds a PhD from the University of Zürich (summa cum laude and the Professor Hug Prize).
Christopher is highly recognized for his arbitration work in leading directories and publications across Europe and Asia including Chambers & Partners, Asia Who’s Who, Expert Guides, GAR and Who’s Who Legal, where is he “held in high esteem,” by interviewees, who describe him as “really on the ball, with exceptional analytical and written advocacy skills.” He is described as having “an impressive range of experience with a written advocacy skillset that is very strong.” Christopher Boog was named as one of “18 global thought leaders,” and is ranked as one of the top four “Most Highly Regarded Individuals;” in the world in Who’s Who Legal’s Future Leaders Arbitration ranking 2017.
Philippe Bärtsch (Global Vice Chair)
Philippe Bärtsch is a partner at Schellenberg Wittmer’s Geneva office, where he acts as one of the two Global Vice Chairs of the firm’s international arbitration practice group. Philippe is also a member of the firm’s Management Committee.
Philippe has extensive experience handling complex international commercial arbitrations. He has acted as counsel and arbitrator in more than 70 high-value international arbitration proceedings, both ad-hoc and institutional, across a wide variety of matters and applicable laws. He has, for example, handled disputes relating to M&A transactions, construction/infrastructure projects, joint ventures, and sales, licence and distribution contracts. His expertise spans a broad range of sectors, including energy, commodity trading, construction, pharmaceutical, consumer goods and sports.
Philippe has also successfully represented clients before the Swiss Supreme Court in setting aside arbitration proceedings. He also advises clients on the enforcement of awards, on Swiss contract law and on international trade sanctions. Philippe has additionally appeared as an expert on Swiss law in proceedings before foreign courts.
Philippe is highly recognized for his work in arbitration across leading directories. Philippe has been praised by clients for his oral and written communication skills, consistent availability, attention to changing circumstances and ability to provide focused and detailed advice.
Philippe regularly publishes and speaks on topics related to arbitration. He teaches at the Swiss Arbitration Academy. He is a member of the Court of the Swiss Chambers’ Arbitration Institution. He additionally co-chairs Young Arbitration Practitioners (YAP), as well as the marketing committee of the Swiss Arbitration Association (ASA).
Philippe graduated from the University of Geneva Law School in 2000. In 2004, he obtained a Master of Laws (LLM) from Harvard Law School.
Philippe is highly recognized for his work in arbitration across leading directories including Expert Guides, GAR and Who’s Who Legal, where is he described as an “accomplished practitioner in international proceedings.” He is particularly highlighted “for his ability to adeptly handle complex cases.”
For more information about Schellenberg Wittmer Ltd.’s website here.