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John D. Magnin

Practice Area Leader - Litigation
+44.(0)20.7360.8168
Fax +44.(0)20.7648.9001

Mr. Magnin is a partner involved in complex arbitration, litigation and other forms of dispute resolution, often with a significant international dimension. Much of his time is spent advising clients on mitigating risk, and avoiding or preparing for litigation or arbitration.

His experience includes: cross-border joint-venture disputes; acting for, and responding to activist investors; investment and transaction-related claims; boardroom disputes; proceedings under Companies, Insolvency and Financial Services legislation; investment, banking and financial services disputes; agency and distribution disputes; gas, LNG pricing and a variety of trading disputes; and sport and media related matters.

Mr. Magnin is a Global co-Practice Area Leader for Dispute Resolution and Litigation, heads the London Office’s Dispute Resolution practice and serves as a co-chair of the firm's India group.

Chambers 2008: "excellent judgment"
Chambers 2009: "business-like and practical"
Legal 500 2010: highlights "the sheer quality and depth of his advice"
Legal 500 2011: "strategically brilliant"
GAR 100 (5th Ed.): "a first-rate tactician"
Chambers 2014: "very good at mapping out the course and planning the litigation"
Legal 500 2015: “great strategic vision”
Legal 500 2017: “a strong leader”, and “knows when to get his hands dirty on clients’ behalf”
Chambers 2017: “able to provide consistent advice on delicate or tough matters”

Over 25 years experience in international arbitration, including:

  • ICC arbitrations: concerning investment structure involving issues of English, Sharia and Swiss law; concerning investments in India; concerning sale of power plant from Baltic to India; and concerning termination of distributorships
  • Gas price review, commodity trading and non-ferrous metals arbitrations
  • LCIA arbitrations: relating to financial services business in Kazakhstan; relating to supply of oil shipments to Kamchatka; relating to rights connected with a major sporting event; and relating to rights under energy supply agreement
  • Fast-track arbitrations: for noteholders in a structured investment vehicle; and for policyholder recovering under contingency event insurance
  • Ad hoc arbitrations concerning: a landmark building; and concerning reinsurance disputes

Over 30 years experience of litigation in England and internationally, including:

  • For Brazilian defence contractor in discharging an injunction obtained by Israeli defence systems company concerning a Brazilian Air Force project, Rafael Advance Defence Systems -v- Mectron Engenharia [2017] EWHC 597
  • For litigation funders successfully resisting security for costs in the RBS Rights Issue Litigation [2017] EWHC 1217
  • For the Note Trustee, in CSAM -v- Titan and Others (x4), Financial List trial concerning Class X Noteholder rights in securitisation structure, [2016] EWHC 969 (first instance) and [2016] EWHC Civ 1265 (Court of Appeal)
  • For the non-executive directors in successful defence of disqualification proceedings in the Farepak litigation [www.judiciary.gov.uk/media/judgments/2012/farepak-judges-statement]
  • For an investment manager in recovery of its performance fee in Proteus -v- SAPRO [2011] EWHC 768
  • For China International Mining Group in unfair prejudice proceedings leading to boardroom change at Mwana Africa
  • For World Wrestling Entertainment in striking out $80m claim by World Wide Fund for Nature [2008] 1 All ER 74
  • Freezing order, anti suit injunction and determining law of the arbitration agreement: Shashoua -v- Sharma [2008] 2 All ER 74
  • Kazakhstan Mineral Resources Corp -v- Tykaz Chrome Corp: joint-venture dispute (“It’s lawyers at dawn in the wild east”, The Guardian, 1 March 2000)
  • Sheikh Fahad -v- Grupo Torras [1999] EWHC 300 (Comm): multi-jurisdictional fraud claims
  • Euroalliages -v- Commission : interim measures and anti-dumping duties on ferro silicon; ECJ [2003] ECR II - 2359
  • Various Privy Council appeals, including $570m decision in Central Bank of Ecuador -v- Conticorp [2015] UKPC 11
  • Freezing injunctions, delivery up orders, co-ordination of pre-emptive remedies and regular work with counsel on the record in non-UK disputes

Joint-venture, transactional and boardroom disputes, including:

  • Joint venture disputes involving assets in Kazakhstan, Saudi Arabia, Kurdistan, India, Nepal, Ghana and others
  • Acting on claims arising from acquisitions and disposals, including advising on strategy, tactics and timing
  • Activist investor disputes, including conduct of contentious matters in the High Court and before the Takeover Panel and Takeover Appeal Board
  • Successful defence of £43m warranty claims; advising on favourable resolution of warranty claims on sale of investment management business; and recovery of $18m through completion accounts expert determination
  • Advising on high profile boardroom disputes, including bad leaver provisions; advising investment manager on partnership departures; and advising on limited partner disputes involving substantial real estate assets
  • Representing directors in a range of inquiries, investigations and proceedings

Finance and financial services disputes:

  • Litigation over structured finance transactions, bills of exchange, letters of credit, promissory notes, security, guarantees and indemnities
  • Acting for stock, derivatives, commodity, oil and metals traders on a range of disputes
  • Conduct of matters before the courts and regulators, including:
    • defending CFD broker against claims brought by customers alleging mis-selling, churning and provision of false information; defending forex broker against claims brought by purported customers over the operation of sub accounts; defending futures broker against claims brought by customers over the operation of stop loss instructions; and defending stock broker against claims brought by customers concerning inter-action of trading and loan accounts
    • advising stock broker on regulatory investigation into trading execution practices; advising stock broker on challenge to regulator's refusal to grant authorisation; advising investment bank on regulatory investigation into identity/disclosure of ultimate beneficial ownership of customer; advising investment bank on regulatory investigation into alleged concert party involving a fund promoted by the bank; advising investment manager on regulatory investigation into alleged concert party in takeover of listed company; advising promoter of investment fund on regulatory investigation into alleged discrepancies in marketing materials; and advising life insurers, appointed representatives, funds, investment and asset managers in mis-selling proceedings
    • multiple injunction proceedings involving departing teams in financial services sector

Sport, media and technology

  • Cricket: extensive advice to international cricket boards on contentious matters, including disputes with players, promoters, sponsors and broadcasters
  • Golf: advising on the postponement and re-staging of the 34th Ryder Cup matches, and on insurance issues affecting the matches; advising Ryder Cup Limited on selection issues; advising PGA European Tour on governance and accounting issues; PGA European Tour -v- KLO : re Dubai Desert Classic; and advising on relations between rights-owners, broadcasters, promoters, sponsors and co-sanctioning bodies
  • Other sports litigation, including: acting for Press Association in the British Horseracing Board/bookmakers litigation [2005] EuLER 924; acting for then-Chairman of Sheffield Wednesday FC in successful defence of libel action brought by Ken Bates; and advising rights-owners, sponsors, service providers, promoters and others on a range of contentious issues
  • Media-related disputes including: Palan -v- Nosebag re “Video Killed the Radio Star”; K-Tel -v- Tring re licensing of rights in recordings; British Newspaper Printing Co -v- Kelly [1989] IRLR 222; Mirror Group Newspapers -v- Gothard [1988] ICR 729; advice to Estate of the late Princess of Wales
  • Acting for ISP facing withdrawal of telecom network services and obtaining urgent injunctive relief to maintain services and a range of rights; IT, pharmaceutical, data management, licensing, software and outsourcing disputes