Tax and Transfer Pricing
Development of the market for tax-related services in 2015 was neither a big surprise nor a drastic shift. The trends of the current market are also directed at covering tax-related issues mainly by in-house legal departments and at reduction of cost of outsourcing. Outside counsels were requested most often for specific services requiring professional expertise and experience, namely for: criminal proceedings, transfer pricing, litigations, overall tax and legal assessment as well as structuring of complex projects or deals. While increase of volume of tax-related consulting support of complex projects and deals is quite noticeable, per our observations, it is still lower than even before the 2008 crisis.
We may consider professional support of clients in negotiation/ administrative dispute resolution with the tax authorities already as a separate service line. Although the tax authorities are not always cooperative, they are open and ready for constructive discussions, at least, with big taxpayers.
It seems also that virtually all leading tax firms spent much time and pursued efforts to make input into development of tax legislation last year. This opportunity to influence the legislative improvement does exist and shall be used more actively by tax experts. The legislators try to consider the position of professional community. Again, not to overestimate this possibility, but it may be no import part of professional commitment. Still, it has not been decided which way the tax reform shall go.
This year we also do not expect big surprises in development of the market. While some spheres may be of priority development, probably no drastic changes in the overall shape should be expected.
WTS Tax Legal Consulting is a top referred tax firm on the market, widely regarded for full scope tax coverage for top multinationals. The extensive international WTS network empowers the Kiev team for cross-border mandates. The firm is a point to go for advisory related to tax structuring and restructuring of companies in Ukraine. The firm has recently been heavily involved in tax litigations and fiscal related litigations with the Customs Service. The practice is supported with a criminal defense team (which operates under the brand name KM Partners) focusing on defending officials to criminal responsibility for tax evasion. The stellar reputation of Alexander Minin and his extensive ongoing practice makes him the most reputed tax practitioner in the country. Alexander Shemiatkin enjoys market recognition. WTS is also at the forefront of transfer pricing (TP) and has successfully acted in a number of tax disputes on application of arm’s length prices to export transactions and on respective profit tax assessment. Ivan Shynkarenko, who was promoted to partner, is dedicated to transfer pricing work.
The broad based tax practice of EY has a complete offering of consulting, litigation and transfer pricing. Among the recent highlights is tax structuring of operations for the world’s leading networking equipment development leader in 8 jurisdictions and accomplished extensive customs advisory support of multi-million import of equipment funded by the EBRD. The team proliferates its tax dispute profile performing dispute resolution support to clients from e-commerce, pharma, media, appliances and tire manufacturing, banking etc. The team, as led by partner Igor Chufarov, continues to provide transfer pricing advisory services in more than 30 projects for large Ukrainian and multinational companies in the mining, metallurgical, electrical, chemical, pharmaceutical, oil and gas, agricultural, banking, retail, and construction industries. Volodymyr Kotenko, partner, head of tax and law practice, is an authority on the market. Other partners involved are Albert Sych, Olga Gorbanovskaya, Jorge Intriago.
The wide range tax offering of KPMG Ukraine encompasses tax consulting practice and equally covers domestic and international aspects. The team recently, as led by Oleg Chayka, director, advised Synexus Group on potential options to re-structure business activities in Ukraine and performed pre-liquidation tax diagnostics of Ukrainian companies of the Sanoma Group and provided associated tax advice in connection with the decision to leave the Ukrainian market. The team is experienced in M&A tax and rendered ad-hoc tax advice in connection with the acquisition of the Maxymizer Group of companies by Oracle. The team proliferated its litigation profile, being active in the pharma, retail, contrition, media, fashion and beauty, banking sectors. Sergey Popov, partner, tax and legal, is among old timers on the market. The transfer pricing practice has a sizeable 20-strong team led by partner Konstantin Karpushin, containing in its client list Nestle, Auchan, Henkel, Nowy Styl, Carlsberg, Imperial Tobacco, Tarkett, Syngenta.
DLA Piper Ukraine retains a fully-fledged stand alone tax practice and advises on corporate tax, VAT and customs, manages tax driven restructurings at domestic and international levels and covers tax aspects within M&A. The office is enlisted for various industry-related tax solutions, and supports clients on tax controversy, litigation and transfer pricing requirements. Among the clients are Mondelez (former Kraft Foods), Dragon Capital, Slavutich Carlsberg Group, Naspers, Sanofi, Pfizer, Jabil, Pharma Start LLC. The team recently provided a major Asian investor with conducted tax structuring in more than 6 jurisdictions within the acquisition of a leading Ukrainian privately-owned producer; supported a major consumer household products manufacturer with change of its supply chain to Ukraine. The firm has significant expertise and growing queries on transfer pricing in Ukraine. In particular, the team prepared transfer pricing documentation for a major international pharmaceutical manufacturer and for a leading multi-channel e-commerce and direct to consumer platform in CEE. Svitlana Musienko, partner, focuses on M&A-related tax matters, VAT, tax controversies, transfer pricing and tax structuring. Illya Sverdlov, legal director, advises on domestic and international tax issues with emphasis on tax-driven restructuring projects.
The experienced tax team of international law firm Baker & McKenzie excels in sophisticated international tax planning for major corporations, in respect of inbound and outbound investment. The firm customarily renders transactional tax advisory and is increasingly active in disputes with the tax authorities. The bulk of domestic and international tax succession, regulatory, compliance and related services to private banks, trustees, wealth management professionals and families is provided through the Global Wealth Management Group. Extensive experience lies in the field of VAT, inter alia, in respect with sales structures, transactional work, VAT audit and controversies. Drawing traditional strength in employment, the team advises on fringe benefits taxes, retirement plan taxes, employee share options plans and related matters. With the established global transfer pricing consulting, the Kiev TP practice in gaining momentum and includes TP study, requirements, reporting matters. The tax practice group is headed by Kiev-based partner Hennadiy Voytsitskyi. Counsel Yuriy Zaluskyy is another key figure of the tax practice.
International Legal Center EUCON thoroughly diversified its renowned tax practice. Over the last couple of years the firm performed large-scale tax litigation. In 2015 the tax team represented PJSC Linyk in the largest public tax dispute valued at USD 51.7 million, appealing tax liabilities in CPT, VAT, excise and penalty for delayed VAT refund. The firm recently handled numerous representations of clients in tax disputes, acting for Ukrrichflot PJSC, DPD-Ukraine, First Project Investment Fund, the Consulate General of Poland in Lviv; and is currently engaged in the resonant case of the Savik Shuster Studio. Yevgen Petrenko and Volodymyr Bevza are the core litigators. The firm has a strong following from Polish clients and handles tax planning and structuring advice in two offices — Kiev and Warsaw. As the Ukrainian part of transfer pricing specialized network TPA Global, EUCON occupied its significant niche among national counsels tackling transfer pricing offering. Some clients to note are Louis Dreyfus Commodities Ukraine, Zepter International Ukraine, Ukrrichflot PJSC, Pruszynski Ukraine.Partner Larysa Vrublevska heads the transfer pricing practice group and earns strong market support for her dedicated expertise. Yaroslav Romanchuk, managing partner, is among the most active tax law experts and rainmakers for the transfer pricing practice.
Ilyashev & Partners is a prominent litigation force on the Ukrainian market that opened an office in Moscow in 2015. Amongst the recent notable highlights is support of the insolvency procedure of FSC More (Crimea) and anti-crisis management in two jurisdictions (Ukraine, Russian Federation) where the firm handles tax litigation, and advises on the tax consequences of restructuring and restoration of right to VAT credit and refund. The firm commands consistent following of its established clients: ArcelorMittal Kryvyi Rih in tax litigations representing the client in more than 20 disputes challenging the tax assessment notices, collection of VAT arrears for over USD 22 million; and Antonov State Enterprise challenging USD 39 million penalties. The lead partner of the tax team was.
The tax practice of Marchenko Danevych is known for its broad competences, including advice on transactional matters, cross-border structuring and proficient performance in tax controversies. The firm is a vivid Ukrainian counsel for transactional tax work, often acting for tax structuring of M&A, contract arrangements, finance operations etc. For example, the firm rendered post-acquisition tax structuring advice toAspen Pharmacare Holding Ltd in the worldwide acquisition of the Arixtra and Fraxiparine thrombosis medicines brands and related manufacturing facilities from GlaxoSmithKline Plc. Strategic transfer pricing advice falls within the team’s remit. The firm advises H&M AB (Sweden) on VAT, income tax, customs value and transfer pricing issues in connection with contemplated establishment (opening) by H&M of retail stores in Ukraine. The team is also a point of choice for multi-million tax disputes. The renowned tax professional Oleh Marchenko is referenced by peers.
Attorneys Association PwC Legal, a member of PwC’s international network of firms, operates as an independent law firm. The office is known for being positioned as a “one-stop shop” for tax advice. The experienced tax litigation team is among the strongest and is regularly enlisted for representing blue chip companies in tax controversy and dispute resolution. For example, the team represented a Ukrainian subsidiary of Oriflame and ADM Ukraine in multi-million disputes with the tax authorities. Andrey Pronchenko,managing partner, is the core figure widely known in the tax community, and continues to extend a firm’s capabilities, including support of senior officials of companies in criminal proceedings that involve tax matters. Alexander Protsyuk and Zhanna Brazhnyk are core members of the litigation team.
Law Offices of OMP showcases a wide scope tax offering of tax planning, structuring investments and commercial activities, as well as in controversial work. The office is also featured with the quickly developed transfer price practice. The firm is active in advising IT and technology, logistics, mining, trade, banking and finance names. Among them, to name a few are Astelit, Bosh, Discovery, Dragon Capital, Group DF, Novus Ukraine, Optimapharm, Poltava Mining, Watsons, TTcomm Ukraine, Zelmer S.A. and others. The sizeable 25-professional team is headed by Dmitry Mikhailenko and Leonid Karpov. The tax practice underwent significant developments over the past year and added new partner Oleksiy Oleksenko to its roster.
Vasil Kisil & Partners has a wide remit of tax disputes with an increasingly diversified practice. The firm represents an array of international and domestic clientele with a following from oil and gas, real estate, transportation and logistics, banking, IT sectors. In the recent portfolio of the firm is representation of Sberbank of Russia, Automotive Europe Corporation, ATB-invest, Sandvik and other solid names. The firm successfully represented Imperial Tobacco Production Ukraine in a tax dispute regarding inclusion of royalties to expenses and determining the beneficiary owner status of the recipient entity. The firm is also known for ongoing representation of Shell in four disputes with the tax authorities regarding the right to automatic VAT refunds. The team acts as a legal counsel to the European Business Association and recently advised on the tax consequences of changing the legal form. Andriy Stelmashchuk, who took over the position of managing partner, maintains an active tax litigation practice.
Egorov Puginsky Afanasiev & Partners Ukraine, Ukrainian member of the international network Taxand, is commended for integrated tax practice with the coverage of corporate tax, tax structuring, customs and indirect taxation, tax-related due diligence, as well as tax and customs disputes. EPAP Ukraine advises an international oil and gas company on existing tax risks and disputes. Apart from an extensive dispute track record, the tax team handled more than 10 high-value tax disputes in 2015. The clients’ industrial breakdown includes pharmaceuticals, energy, IT, electronics, banking and finance. Notably, the team was active in pro bono projects in drafting amendments to tax laws required for implementation of sms-charity projects in Ukraine, including provision for tax exemptions for charities and Ukrainian telecom companies. The core team includes partners: Gleb Bialyi (tax litigation), Ilona Zekely (tax structuring), Roman Stepanenko (Taxand). Recently promoted counsels Oleksandr Maydanyk and Arsen Miliutin are co-heads of the tax practice and tax litigation, respectively.
The tax practice of Sayenko Kharenko is closely integrated with other practices and addresses a wide spectrum of international and domestic tax issues, including advisory on direct tax, indirect tax, private tax, tax controversies and other transactional and regulatory matters. The firm’s new offering is tax compliance and accounting services. Given the strong performance on the front of financial restructuring, the transactional tax team advises a Ukrainian agricultural company on Ukrainian tax matters arising in connection with cross-border debt restructuring. The tax disputes practice group is performed by specialized litigators and criminal defense attorneys. In a recent highlight the dedicated team acted for one of the major tobacco producers in a number of tax disputes, in particular, with regard to excise tax assessment and with regard to transfer pricing and free distribution of goods. In mid-2015 the firm reinforced its tax practice with a 4-lawyer group under the guidance of partner Serhiy Verlanov, who joined the firm from PricewaterhouseCoopers. Counsel Dmytro Korbut remains another key practitioner of the tax practice.
Avellum develops its mainstay for handing mainstream transactional tax support in M&A transactions, capital markets, liability management, cross-border financing, corporate restructuring, structuring of business operations. Additionally, the firm recently showcased high growth in transfer pricing advice for Ukrainian industrial heavyweights like Ferrexpo and DTEK. The tax team covered advice on the Ukrainian tax consequences of the global GSK/Novartis transaction for both direct and indirect taxation, whilst this first large asset deal in Ukraine involved a potential business restructuring transfer pricing issue. Notably, Avellum’s tax practice appeared to arrange seamless support in the scope of the team’s landmark mandates. For example, the team rendered tax advice to the Ukrainian Ministry of Finance in the course of its borrowings and notable developed amendments to the Tax and Customs Codes in connection with these projects. Partners Mykola Stetsenko and Glib Bondar manage overall project work within the firm. Vadim Medvedev is a visible tax practitioner.
The sizeable team of Arzinger predominantly advises international business and its branches in Ukraine. The industry-wise approach is vividly observed in tax practice, and has the following coverage:pharma, equipment and machinery, IT, packing and food, etc. In this past year the firm was active in giving advice on the tax aspects of corporate mandates and commercial arrangements, sector specific analysis and regulations, tax administration and penalties. In a recent highlight the tax team advised a Belgium group of companies, Puratos, on tax consequence in the course of debt-to-equity swap and advised Tetra Pak Ukraine on the tax aspects of business reorganization. The dispute team acted for Defi Russie, a company specializing in external advertising services, in appealing against annulment of its VAT certificate. Pavlo Khodakovskyy, partner andtax practice head, has focused mostly on advisory work. The dispute area was taken over by the firm’s partner, Kateryna Gupalo, who is also engaged in criminal defense in proceedings initiated on tax evasion grounds.
AEQUO is seen in mainstreamed tax structuring assignments for complex transaction projects, showcasing an impressively growing client portfolio. The team recently rendered advice on the restructuring operations of the Edinburgh Business School Eastern Europe in Ukraine and advised TIS Group of Terminals, a major Ukrainian infrastructure group, on the tax structuring of a share sale transaction. The team is also known for being a Ukrainian legal counsel of Google Inc., inter alia, on the tax aspects of implementation of its products in Ukraine. From the dispute side, AEQUO acted for several Ukrainian subsidiaries of Inditex Group in challenging the decisions of tax authorities on accrual of fines for alleged misreporting of CPT liabilities. Denis Lysenko,managing partner, is head of the 6-strong tax and customs practice group. Oleksandr Tereshchenko and Vasyl Mishchenko make up the core input to the tax practice.
Integrites has been proactively developing its tax practice and assists its transactional practices with tax aspects. Thus, a significant part of tax planning projects is carried out on transnational deals covering different jurisdictions. Integrites acted as a CIS counsel for Iron Mountain Inc., a storage and information management company, in a series of acquisition/lease of real estate objects in different jurisdictions and covered international tax consequences of the transaction. The firm is a counsel to Palma Group and developed and implemented a new comprehensive corporate and tax structure for 36 companies located in different jurisdictions around the globe. The list of clients contains sound international and local names like ArcellorMittal, Philip Morris, Velyka Kyshenia, Farmak. Nataliya Tomashevskaya, partner, and Olga Vinglovska, counsel, are the main individuals of the firm’s tax team.
Full service firm Asters offers traditionally strong support in transactions, structured investments and corporate mandates representing a wide range of multinational clientele. The recent workflow included tax structuring and business modeling, subsequent advisory of financing and incentive payments, tax compliance and efficient restructuring/closure, wide range of operational matters and litigation. Among the recent developments is diversification of Asters’ offering with a transfer pricing service, including elaboration of cross-border transfer pricing models and the implications of various strategies. Lead partner Alexey Khomyakov is the core contact point of the tax team.
The Kiev tax practice of Dentons is an integral part of the global tax group and is a port of call for international companies doing business in Ukraine, Ukrainian and foreign investors, as well as local businesses. The firm renders complex cross-border on tax, customs and regulatory issues, compliance, structuring and planning, as well as tax litigation. The office is especially active advising corporations in the luxury, hotel, leisure and network marketing sectors in connection with their business activities in Ukraine. Partner Igor Davydenko is the tax practice head.
Over the last few years ICF Legal Service enhanced its position for tax structuring and international tax planning on the market. The sizeable 11-lawyer team is enlisted for rendering comprehensive tax advisory projects and explicitly involved in multi-jurisdictional advice. The firm is a popular choice for the banking, finance and investment sectors. Nataliya Ulyanova, lead partner, is highly regarded for her extensive tax planning expertise.
The regional network of offices rapidly expanded by GOLAW (previously known as Gvozdiy & Oberkovych)ensures the firm’s presence in administrative appeals across different regions. Wide range of tax disputes has been performed for such clients as Fracasso Industries Ukraine, PSG-International, Amazone Ukraine, Ukraine’s biggest chain of department stores for children Antoshka, Diamantbank, Azelis Ukraine Galicia Distillery, and others. Managing partner Valentyn Gvozdiy is a well-known tax litigator.
Active in banking circles LCF Law Group centers its advice around tax structuring and planning. The group, under the guidance of managing partner Anna Ogrenchuk and counsel Olena Volianska, advised PJSC Universal Bank on its taxation and factoring operations, VAT in transactions within VISA and MasterCard international payments systems. The lawyer’s team is led by senior partner Artem Stoyanov and supported Autotrade Service LLC on the tax consequences of its corporate restructuring and factoring operation.
Highly regarded on the market for its abilities in tax litigationis the standing old timer Jurimex Law Firm. Headed by Vita Forsiuk, the firm handled representation in tax disputes of a number of state enterprises — regional Road Administrations of Kiev, Kharkov, Rivne, Kirovograd, Ivano-Frankivsk, Zhytomyr, etc. The firm’s sector-specific niche expertise encompasses radio and telecommunications, lotteries, tourism, thanks to the following of such clients as state lotteries MSL LLC,the Broadcasting, Radio Communications & Television Concern, Travel Professional Group. The firm launched a unique on-line analytical service called Taxlink. Danylo Getmantsev, honorary president, is known for his many years presence on the market, scientific, educational and legislative initiatives.
Having a tax practice among its core competences, Sokolovskyi & Partners is a vivid proactive player on the tax litigation front concentrating on all stages of subsequent controversies. The ranging scope of disputes relates to evaluating customs values, VAT, CPT, income tax, land duties, penalties, etc. Criminal defense attorneys led by Tetiana Lysovets support the tax team in terms of tax related criminal proceedings. The sizeable 10-lawyer team is led by Natalia Kurilenko with strategic guidance from managing partner Vladyslav Sokolovskyi.
AVER LEX attorneys at law, a rapidly growing litigation and criminal defense market player, grows its tax disputes caseload. The tax litigation work supports tax related white-collar crime/criminal defense cases as led by partners Igor Fedorenko and Vitaliy Serdyuk. The industrial coverage of clients includes construction, IT, alcohol beverages, food, transportation, industrial manufacturing. The practice is led by Natalia Dubyna, an experienced tax practitioner.
MORIS GROUP excels at tax disputes, managing disputes risks as well as tax consulting. Ivano-Frankivsktsement JSC instructs the group for tax structuring matters in the course of different business activities. The firm is profoundly active across tax litigation queries of clients, among others Karpatnaftokhim and Lukor. The reported total value of tax disputes in 2015 exceeds USD 56.9 million. Among the recent highlights is a multi-million tax consulting project on tax compromise offer for taxpayers with an overwhelming tax debt. Three partners, namely Andriy Savchuk, Volodymyr Rak and Maryan Martynyuk are involved in the tax practice.
Poberezhnyuk & Partners law group, with premier presence in dispute resolution, giving support in the course of tax inspections and representation in Ukrainian courts. The team is centered on appealing against CPT and VAT liabilities, penalty and regulatory matters. Of late it has represented BMTS LLC (TM “Watsons”), a leading Ukrainian retail company, Construction Machinery, Asset management company Genesis and Pharmaceutical Association Biocon in the course of tax disputes. Managing partner Larysa Poberezhnyuk is a well-established litigation and tax professional.
The diverse tax expertise of Gramatskiy & Partners lies in the field of tax planning and optimization, CPT and VAT administration, and increasingly growing tax notices appeal. Tax due diligence and tax structuring within comprehensive corporate projects is another significant part of the firm’s recent tax practice. At present, the firm handles the tax planning of the construction by Seven Hills of the Aerport City business park and renders ongoing tax advisory in terms of the projects Zavod Platforma and Food Festival Project. The team handles the tax structuring of export and import transactions. Igor Reutov heads the team.
VB PARTNERS is a compact team centered on dispute work, visibly mostly on administrative appeal of additional tax charges and cancellation of tax notification-decisions and defence of taxpayers’ officials in parallel criminal proceedings for tax evasion. The team’s client portfolio consists of metallurgy, oil and gas, industrial enterprises. Among the recent notable representations are acting for Public JSC Zaporizhsky Alyuminievy Kombinat in an appeal against a tax notice-decision on an additional VAT charge and penalties. Lead partner Volodymyr Vashchenko is an active tax litigator.
Tax litigation is among the premier practices for FCLEX and it demonstrated rapid growth throughout the past year. The Azovmash group of companies instructed the team for representation in around 30 tax disputes, on challenging additional corporate profit tax liabilities for the record sum of USD 27.6 million. Other clients of its tax practice are Hotel Salut, Ferrexpo Eristovo Mining, Bank Finance & Credit, Kievmedpreparat, Arterium Corp., Vernum Bank. The team is also engaged in tax structuring. The tax practice is headed by partner Sergey Chuyev, supported by other partners of the firm — Taras Poshyvanyuk, Vyacheslav Kraglevych, Oleg Malinevskiy.
Wolf Theiss is a point of choice for Ukrainian subsidiaries of sound multinational and Austrian clients. The Kiev office is equally present on advisory and controversial matters. Notably, the firm advised Lukoil on various tax issues arising in the course of trading in Ukrainian oil products as well as on the eligibility for, and application of, the tax compromise procedure (as a result, a compromise for the total amount of EUR 35 million of alleged tax liabilities was reached). The firm also advised AMIC Energy Holding GmbH, an Austrian independent private equity and corporate finance/strategic advisory firm, on various tax issues related to the intended acquisition and operation of an oil products trading business in Ukraine. Anna Kvederis leads the practice.
CMS Cameron McKenna handles the tax aspects of transactions, including acquisitions and joint ventures, divestitures, commercial arrangements, and is increasingly active on the tax litigation front. The sectoral background of clients: energy, machinery and equipment producers. The office is the preferred legal counsel for international businesses operating in Ukraine withongoing tax advisory related to day-to-day business activities. The Kiev office was appointed by the EBRD as its advisor in connection with the establishment of the Business Ombudsman Institution and covered tax advice. Partners Olexander Martinenko are Olga Vorozhbyt are the main contacts.
The compact team of Lexwell & Partners is noted for a remarkable portfolio of industrial clients. The firm advised ArcelorMittal on issues relating to appeal against reassessment of tax for a total of around USD 5.5 million and PJSC Podilsky Cement in relation to a tax audit, negotiation with tax authorities, appeal against a tax reassessment of over USD 10 million and its out-of-court settlement with the tax authorities. Igor Nagai, counsel, is the main tax practitioner.
AstapovLawyers* international law group is centered around tax structuring and supports the transactional practices of the group with structuring corporate and commercial transactions, ownership and debt restructuring, alienation, trade operation, tax aspects of intellectual property. Tax structuring of the business activities of clients on the European is a market feature the recent workflow of the group. Oksana Kneychuk, partner and head of international tax planning and corporate structuring practice, is the main practitioner.
Misechko & Partners has a sharp litigation focus with tax practice centered on disputes with the tax authorities on cancellation of additional tax liabilities. The majority of litigation covers corporate profit tax formation and individual income tax issues, challenging VAT formation and refund, where the firm represents certain local names like Alliance of Builders of Ukraine LLC, Bilyaus Argo LLC, Profibeton LLC, Panalpina World Transport Ltd and others. In the past year the firm received especially many instructions from private entrepreneurs. Founding partner Volodymyr Misechko is the main rainmaker.
Tax Terra, a domestic firm with premier focus on tax, renders advice on domestic and international taxation, supporting start-up business in Ukraine, international transaction structuring and plans on the restructuring of business. The firm follows an industry-wise approach, focusing on specific tax issues and regulations such as IT-companies, finance-leasing companies, energy and natural resources entities. Significant clients are Black&Veatch, CheesClub, Porsche Leasing, Paritet, Bashar Ukraine, Manuchar Ukraine, Inform-Mobile, Great Plains, YPO, etc. Tax advisory is led by managing partner Larysa Antoshchuk, while another partner, Andrii Buzynnyi, leads the tax dispute resolution arm.
In 2015 Spenser & Kauffman remained in its sharp mainstay — the insurance market. The firm represented insurance companies PJSC MetLif and PJSC Insurance Company Cardif at various state authorities in tax dispute appeals against tax notifications. Tetyana Daniltseva, partner, head of insurance and tax, is the main contact.
Pravochyn attorneys at law, a litigation centered local outfit, led by Oleksandr Onishchenko, is increasingly active in tax disputes. It recently carried out its accomplished representation of Geometry Global in a dispute with the tax authorities as to contesting tax decision notices and Lantmannen AXA as one of the leaders in producing foodstuffs at the High Administrative Court of Ukraine in a tax dispute on accrual of corporate tax.
Patent Law Agency Synergy is noted on the market by its niche tax advice in the area of IT, Internet and software projects. The agency handled tax advisory for BKT Solutions LLC for delivery of software throughout the Internet. Managing partner Viktoriya Ostapchuk is the key contact.
The Lviv-based boutique of Hrynchuk & Partners represents clients of IT, pharma-retail, food and banking industries in tax revisions and tax court cases. A major tax case tried by the firm’s litigators was resolved finally in favor of a private bank by the Supreme Court of Ukraine. Operating as the defense in tax-driven white-collar criminal cases remains one of the basic firm’s practices, including providing complex defense for IT companies in fiscal police attempts to criminalize the commonly accepted practice of developer-entrepreneurs. Tax planning and corporate structuring are also at the core of clients’ queries of late. Andriy Hrynchuk is a tax litigator with a solid track record.
Shkrebets & Partners, a Kharkov-based law firm, is consistently preferred by big industrial clients, in particular Kharkov Combined Heat and Power Plant No 5, Eristovskiy Mining Processing Plant; ME Zhylkomservice, etc. The team represented the interests of ME Zhylkomservice in litigation with the tax authorities on cancellation of tax notices. Managing partner Eugene Shkrebets is the main contact.
IMG Partners is focused on tax planning and solving tax disputes, and is also involved in providing representation in criminal prosecutions for tax offenses. The team has a strong presence in the agrarian sector, and recently appealed against a client’s alleged tax liabilities of more than USD 17 million in favor of one of the largest agricultural holdings. The lead partner for tax matters is Lesya Kaspruk.
With a narrow industrial focus on pharmaceuticals and healthcare, Legal Alliance Company mushroomed it tax disputes caseload. In 2015 the firm handled over 20 cases on appealing additional CPT and VAT liabilities, representing the representative offices of international pharmaceutical companies in Ukraine. It is noteworthy that the firm was tasked by a national pharma distributor for business restructuring support. Clientele includes Takeda, Spectrum Vision, Delta Medical, Apotex, SMD, Boehringer Ingelheim, Nobel Ilac. Anatolii Menshikov leads the tax practice.
PricewaterhouseCoopers Ukraine is one of the major players for transfer pricing service. Olga Trifonova received strong market feedback for her experience in preparing transfer pricing documentation.
Gryphon Investment Consulting Group covers tax structuring of its transactional mandates, inter alia, trade financing, corporate restructuring, asset management, M&A deals, as well as multi-jurisdictional tax planning. The group is experienced in sector specific tax advisory and tax compliance, rendering advisory to financial, banking, insurance, leasing, retail clients. The group earned success when it represented Allianz Ukraine in challenging tax decisions. Ihor Lynnyk is the main contact point.
Law Firm Dynasty, one of the major regional law firms headquartered in Dnepropetrovsk, maintains its strong tax litigation profile. Finance and investment, machine-building, transport, logistics and storage are amongst the industry backgrounds of clients that the team services. Anna Poddubnaya and Snejana Karagodina are points of contact.
In 2015 Oleg Vdovychen left Kiev Advocate, a local firm, and established Vdovychen & Partners attorneys at law. The 12-lawyer team is centered on litigation work with a focus on tax disputes. Over the past year the firm acted in a series of litigations representing mostly domestic clients, being involved in cases appeals against VAT and CPT liabilities and guiding clients through tax compromise procedures.
Juscutum Attorneys Association is focused on tax litigation, appealing against tax assessments of controlling authorities. The 5-lawyer team is guided by Andriy Fomichov and is the point of choice for local clients in the main.
The tax practice of Dmitrieva & Partners offers a comprehensive service, possessing an accounting outsourcing service. Corporate profit taxation, VAT and compensation are also part of the firm’s remit. The firm’s recent clients include trading network Argo, Je Ecometall (Aton) and the representative office of Intax Group.
NOBLES is focused on tax structuring of commercial and corporate transactions of its clients, tax aspects of employment. The firm has lately advised RISKAUDIT, a state-owned French corporation in the nuclear safety sector on tax efficient repatriation of foreign investment made in real estate objects in the 1990s. It also advised Magyar Telekom, the biggest Hungarian telecommunications company, regarding tax audit and subsequent challenging of the results of the audit undertaken during liquidation of a Ukrainian subsidiary. Denis Vergeles, heads the tax, customs & regulatory practice group.
Onstan Law Firm offers international taxation and Transfer pricing advice, customs issues. The team was recently enlisted for tax structuring of outside financing and international holding restructuring. Yuriy Fedchyshyn manages the tax team.
The Kiev office of Peterka & Partners has a following of clients from the Czech Republic and is engaged in tax structuring and transactional analysis.
The Dnepropetrovsk-based BLISS law firm considers tax to be among its core practices and regularly renders advice on the impact of recent legislative changes on operational activity and acted on bringing appeals against charged tax liabilities.
LLM, National Academy of Internal Affairs.
EMBA (Chicago Booth, USA).
Igor Lynnyk has 15 years of experience in the fields of litigation and tax law.
Heading the Gryphon Legal practice and as a practicing attorney, Igor Lynnyk focuses on legal support and legal defence of businesses, tax structuring and consulting, supporting financial transactions, financial risk management, and regulatory compliance, including financial investigations (forensic). Mr. Lynnyk advises on business construction and development, and improving management efficiency and controls. Mr. Lynnyk also provides support of corporate and tax disputes, and disputes in the field of loan restructuring and distressed assets. Igor represents clients in pre-trial and court proceedings for economic and so-called ‘white-collar crimes’, including in the banking and financial markets.
Tax, Risk Management
Ukrainian, Russian, English
LLM, New York University
Budget-related Legislation, Corporate Taxes, Customs & Duties, International Tax Planning, Personal Taxes, Resolution of disputes with tax authorities, Ukrainian and European VAT, Transfer Pricing
Yuriy Fedchyshyn, managing partner at Onstan, serves as the Head of Tax Department. His practice focuses on advising clients on the tax aspects of mergers and acquisitions and other major transactions, including spin‑offs, international restructurings and corporate joint ventures. Mr. Fedchyshyn also works with clients on issues related to customs law, corporate law, international trade and tax litigation. Mr. Fedchyshyn is a regular speaker at national and international tax conferences and appears frequently in the media. Mr. Fedchyshyn is a fellow of the European Institute of International Taxation (Krakow, Poland) where he specializes in European and international taxation. Prior to joining Onstan, he worked in leading Ukrainian law firms and headed the legal department of a large company. Mr. Fedchyshyn also worked at the IBFD (Amsterdam, Netherlands) where he specialized in European taxation.
Taxation and Customs Law
Ukrainian, Russian, English
LL.M., National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy (magna cum laude)
Master’s degree in finance, Ukrainian Institute of Stock Market Development
Certified Leasing Specialist (USAID & Certified Listing Specialists Fund (USA)
Natalia Radchenko has extensive expertise in national and international tax matters, including corporate tax, development of financial and tax structures of groups of companies.
Provides legal advice to individuals regarding tax regulation. Natalia focuses on international taxation, legal opinions on taxation issues, civil and commercial matters, transfer pricing, business structuring and special regimes. Successfully represents clients from retail, e-commerce, industry, agriculture, IT and trade, including Ipsos Ukraine, Flirchi, Renault Trucks Ukraine, Volvo Ukraine, Pentegy. Advises on family and individual equity structuring, expatriate taxation, inheritance and donation tax.
Tax: Consulting and Litigation, Transfer Pricing
Ukrainian, Russian, English
Institute of International Relations, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kiev
Ms. Ulyanova has 15 years of professional experience. Her main areas of expertise are international tax planning; complex corporate and tax structuring schemes; tax risk evaluation and elaboration of proposals of risk minimization; consulting on structuring asset protection, including trusts and funds; consulting on international tax planning and various issues of corporate and tax legislation in Ukraine; structuring of M&A deals; drafting and analysis of various documentation in accordance with English law, including shareholders agreements, options, etc.; establishment and administration of foreign legal entities; selection of foreign banks to implement projects of varying complexity, acquiring a residence permit and second citizenship abroad.
Ms. Ulyanova provides consultations and legal opinions on various issues. She has 10 years of experience in organizing and speaking at conferences and seminars on the latest achievements of international tax planning and its main characteristics.
Ms. Ulyanova is the author of numerous publications of tax and corporate law in leading Ukrainian and international business media.
International Taxation, Tax Planning, Tax Disputes, Tax Consulting, Corporate Law
Ukrainian, Russian, English