Franz Stirnimann Fuentes is a partner in Winston & Strawn’s Geneva office who focuses his practice on international arbitration and litigation as well as Swiss commercial law.
Dr. Stirnimann has acted as counsel and arbitrator in more than 40 international arbitrations (ICC, ICSID, Swiss Rules, SCC, DIS, ZCC, UNCITRAL, and ad hoc), both contract and treaty-based and involving a broad array of industries. Dr. Stirnimann also represents clients in setting-aside and revision proceedings before the Swiss Federal Supreme Court and in the enforcement of arbitral awards in Switzerland and has acted in commercial litigation before Swiss, U.S., German, and Spanish courts.
Dr. Stirnimann also advises and represents clients in the negotiation of Swiss commercial transactions and related litigation before Swiss courts and administrative bodies, including on matters of IP/IT, (unfair) competition, employment, data protection, and regulatory compliance. He regularly works for clients from or with commercial interests in the United States and Latin America.
Dr. Stirnimann, who is of Swiss as well as Latin American origin, is admitted to practice in Geneva, England and Wales, and New York.
Past representative arbitration matters include:
- Representing an international consumer products manufacturer in an ICSID arbitration relating to foreign investment claims concerning public health measures (public international law; reported in IA Reporter, 3 March 2010)
- Representing a Latin American country in a The Hague-based UNCITRAL arbitration relating to foreign investment in the mining sector (public international law)
- Representing a Nigerian oil exploration and production company in a Geneva-based ICC arbitration relating to a joint venture with a major European energy company (English and Nigerian law)
- Representing a UN organization in a The Hague-based UNCITRAL arbitration against a Latin American country relating to relief and humanitarian aid work (public international law)
- Representing a Qatari energy consulting company in a Geneva-based UNCITRAL arbitration relating to a business development cooperation agreement (Swiss law; award published in ASA Bull. 4/2011)
- Representing a Belgian airline company in a Paris-based UNCITRAL arbitration relating to the termination of an airplane leasing agreement (Namibian law)
- Representing a European telecommunications company in a Zurich-based ICC arbitration relating to a post-M&A dispute (New York law)
- Representing a U.S. pharmaceutical company in a Zurich-based ICC arbitration relating to a trademark licensing dispute (Swiss law)
- Representing a U.S. car component producer in a Geneva-based ICC arbitration relating to a joint venture in the automobile industry (Spanish law)
- Representing an international aluminum producer in a Zurich-based Swiss Rules arbitration relating to barter agreements and investments in an aluminum smelter in a Central Asian country (Swiss law)
- Representing an aluminum trading company in a Stockholm-based SCC and a Zurich-based ICC arbitration in a dispute relating to the supply of aluminum and other raw materials (Swedish and Swiss law)
- Acting for a third-party witness/employee of a U.S. bank in a Frankfurt-based DIS arbitration relating to a post-M&A dispute (German law; reported in Kluwer Arbitration Blog, 20 November 2012)
- Representing an investment fund in a Zurich-based ad hoc arbitration, a Geneva-based ICC arbitration, and a Stockholm-based SCC arbitration relating to an investment in the Russian telecommunications sector (English, Swiss, Swedish, and Russian law; reported in Mealey’s International Arbitration 19/2004 and 22/2007, The American Lawyer/Focus Europe – Arbitration Scorecard, 2005 and 2007; one award published in ASA Bull. 3/2006)
- Representing a European construction company in a Geneva-based ICC arbitration relating to a joint venture for the construction of toll highways in Poland (Swiss law)
- Representing a European engineering company in a Zurich-based ZCC arbitration relating to the construction of power plants in the United States and Mexico (Swiss law)
Dr. Stirnimann also serves as chair, party-appointed and sole arbitrator in a number of international arbitrations (ICC, Swiss Rules, UNCITRAL/ad hoc) seated in Europe and Latin America, many of them involving Spanish language.
Prior to joining Winston & Strawn, Dr. Stirnimann was a counsel with Lalive (Geneva), an associate with Winston & Strawn (Washington, D.C. and Geneva), a foreign associate with Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Madrid) and a project manager at Holcim S.A. (Madrid).
Dr. Stirnimann is a member of the Winston & Strawn Audit Committee. Dr. Stirnimann's organizational affiliations include CEA (member and president, Swiss Chapter); ASA (member); LCIA (member); ALARB (member); NYBA (member, Section of International Law); ABA (member, Section of International Law); The Law Society of England and Wales (member); ODAGE (member); AMCHAM Switzerland (member); Latcam Switzerland (member); Swiss American Society (member); AIBL Geneva (member); SF-FS (past member and secretary, 1998-2000).
He is a member of the panel of arbitrators of AMCHAM Switzerland, AMCHAM Peru, Centro de Arbitraje, PUCP Centro de Análisis y Resolución de Disputas, a member of the list of emergency arbitrators and of the Advisory Board of CAIC Centro de Arbitraje de la Industria de la Construcción.
Dr. Stirnimann holds a Ph.D. in law from the University of Zurich (summa cum laude, Professor Walther Hug Prize, 2003), an LL.M. from Georgetown University (with distinction, Professor Heinrich Kronstein Scholar and Fellow of the Swiss National Science Foundation, 2001) and a J.D. from the University of Fribourg and Hatfield College, Durham University (with distinction, Erasmus Scholar, 1996).
Dr. Stirnimann has been a visiting professor teaching on international arbitration at Universidad del Pacífico del Perú (2009-2012); Universidad EAFIT, Medellín (2008); Centro Universitario de Brasilia (UniCEUB) (2008) and Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (2008), an assistant editor of the Swiss Intellectual Property, Information and Competition Law Review (1998-2000) and a research and teaching assistant to Professor Bernhard Schnyder at the Chair for Swiss Civil Law, University of Fribourg (1995-1996). He is also an alumnus of the Georgetown Leadership Seminar of the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University and a member of the European Law Alumni Advisory Board of Georgetown University.
Speeches and Publications
Speeches and Lectures
- “La ejecución de los laudos arbitrales” (Enforcement of arbitral awards), lecture at Diplomado en arbitraje doméstico e internacional, Comisión Interamericana de Arbitraje Comercial/Camara de Comercio de Lima, Lima, December 2012
- “La ejecución del laudo. Una preocupación del árbitro, de la institución arbitral o de ambos?” (The enforcement of arbitral awards. A concern of the arbitrator, the institution, or of both?), panelist at II. Encuentro de Capitulos Internacionales del CEA 2012, Mexico City, November 2012
- “Independencia e Imparcialidad” (Independence and Impartiality), lecture at Diplomado en arbitraje domestic e internacional, Universidad del Pacífico/Centro de arbitraje de la AMCHAM Peru, Lima, October 2012
- “The Taboos in International Arbitration,” co-organizer of conference hosted by CEA-40/ASAbelow40, LaLecherette, October 2012
- “La reciente racha de nuevos reglamentos y reglas de arbitraje – resultado de armonización y evolulción ó síntoma de “comodificación” del arbitraje?” panel contribution at IV. Conferencia Latinomericana de arbitraje (CLA), Medellín, June 2012
- “The Protections afforded to investors by Bilateral Investment Treaties,” speech at conference of Association of International Business Lawyers (AIBL), Geneva, March 2012 (with Laurence Burger)
- “La prueba en el arbitraje internacional” (Evidence in international arbitration), lecture at Diplomado en arbitraje domestic e internacional, Camara de Comercio de Lima, Lima, November 2011
- “El Reglamento de Arbitraje UNCITRAL revisado en 2010 y su incidencia en Iberoamérica“ (The revised UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules and their effect in Latin America), panelist at conference organized by CEA and CCMA, Madrid/Caracas/Geneva, September 2011
- “El Perú como sede de arbitrajes internacionales” (Peru as Seat of International Arbitrations), panel contribution at V. Congreso Internacional de Arbitraje, Universidad Católica, Lima, September 2011
- “La ética del abogado de arbitraje” (Counsel Ethics in Arbitration), panel contribution at V. Congreso Internacional de Arbitraje, Universidad Católica, Lima, September 2011
- “Valuación y determinación del quantum” (Valuation and Determination of Quantum), moderator in Below-40 Program, III. Conferencia Latinomericana de arbitraje (CLA), Asunción, June 2011
- “WTO Litigation, Investment and Commercial Arbitration, Cross-fertilization and Reciprocal Opportunities,” co-organizer (with Jorge Huerta Goldman and Antoine Romanetti), WTO Headquarters, Geneva, May 2011
- “Counsel Ethics in Arbitration,” speech at Vienna Arbitration Days, Vienna, March 2011
- “La extensión de la cláusula arbitral a terceros” (Extension of the Arbitration Clause to Third Parties), lecture at Diplomado en arbitraje domestico e internacional, Universidad del Pacífico/Centro de arbitraje de la AMCHAM-Peru, Lima, October 2010
- “Anti-suit injunctions – medidas anti-procedimiento,” panel contribution at IV. Congreso Internacional de Arbitraje, Universidad Católica, Lima, September 2010
- “La ley aplicable. Lex Mercatoria” (Aplicable Law. Lex Mercatoria), lecture at Diplomado en arbitraje domestico e internacional, Universidad del Pacífico/Centro de arbitraje de la AMCHAM-Peru, Lima, November 2009
- “Practical Concerns in International Arbitration,” panel contribution in Joint Conference of CEA-40 and ICC Young Arbitrators Forum, IBA 2009 Congress, Madrid, October 2009
- “La Prueba en el arbitraje internacional” (Evidence in International Arbitration), panel contribution at III. Congreso Internacional de Arbitraje, Universidad Católica, Lima, September 2009
- “Los tratados de inversión de países europeos” (Investment protection treaties of European countries), speech at III. Congreso Internacional de Arbitraje, Universidad Católica, Lima, September 2009
- “Arbitraje commercial internacional” (International Commercial Arbitration), lecture at Escuela Diplomática de la República del Ecuador, Quito, September 2009
- “Arbitraje de inversión y propiedad intellectual” (Investment Arbitration and Intellectual Property), Foro de arbitraje en materia de inversión, “El arbitraje en materia de inversión en un mundo cambiante,” Mexico City, September 2009
- “Annulment proceedings – a comparison between Switzerland and the UK,” panel contribution in Conference of ASA below 40, “Challenge of Awards – Dos and Don’ts,” Geneva, May 2009
- “Arbitraje internacional – perspectivas para Colombia” (International Arbitration – Perspectives for Colombia), speech/seminar at Suramericana de Seguros/Grupo Empresarial Antioqueño, Medellín, December 2008
- “Cláusulas ‘Fork in the Road’ y arbitraje” (Fork in the Road Clauses and Arbitration), panel contribution in III. Congreso Internacional de Medios Alternativos (“Arbitraje en Materia de Inversiones: El fenómeno panameño y perspectivas en Latinoamérica”), Panama City, November 2008
- “Arbitragem internacional” (International Arbitration), speech at Federação das Indústrias do Estado de Santa Catarina (FIESC), Florianopolis, October 2008
- “Propiedade intelectual e o direito da concorrência” (Intellectual Property and Antitrust Law), speech at Siqueira Castro Advogados, Seminario “Temas Atuais de Propiedade Intelectual,” Rio de Janeiro, October 2008
- “La arbitrabilidad del derecho de concurrencia extranjero – un estudio de derecho comparado” (Arbitrability of Foreign Antitrust Law – A Comparative Law Analysis), lecture at the Faculty of Law, Regional University of Blumenau (FURB), Blumenau, October 2008
- “La propiedade intelectual e o direito antitrust” (Intellectual Property and Antitrust Law), lecture in the Inter-department Graduate Course on Intellectual Property Management, Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC), Florianópolis, September 2008
- “L’arbitrage et la loi de la concurrence” (Arbitration and Antitrust Law), lecture at the Faculty of Law, University of Lausanne, Lausanne, May 2008
- “El árbitro – su perfil, independencia e imparcialidad” (The Arbitrator – his profile, independence and impartiality), lecture at the Faculty of Law, Universidad De Las Americas (UDLA), Mexico City, April 2008
- “Knacknüsse im Schnittfeld Kartell-/Immaterialgüterrecht” (Tricky Issues in the Interface between Antitrust and Intellectual Property Law), speech before Zurich Bar Association, Zurich, September 2007
- “15 Jahre Internet – Herausforderungen für das Urheberrecht?“ (15 Years Internet – Challenges to Copyright Law?), speech at the Europa Institut of the University of Zurich, Zurich, June 2007
- “Introduction to International Commercial Arbitration,“ speech at Georgetown University International Law Alumni Reunion, Paris, May 2007
- “Verwertungsgesellschaften und Kartellrecht“ (Copyright Collective Societies and Antitrust), speech before the Annual Assembly of the Association of Swiss Copyright Users, Bern, May 2001
- “El Derecho a la Prueba – Retos y problemas desde un enfoque europeo y comparado,” Arbitraje Comercial Internacional en Europa (aspectos actuales y regímenes jurídicos), 2013
- “Standard clause, Switzerland: ad hoc clause,“ Practical Law Company- Arbitration and Dispute Resolution, New York 2012 (with Laurence Burger)
- “Renuncia al derecho de impugnar un laudo. Estudio práctico sobre la experiencia suiza: el artículo 192 de la Ley de Derecho Internacional Privado (LDIP)” (Waiver of Set-aside Applications. Practical Study of the Swiss Experience: Article 192 of the Swiss Private International Law Act), Lima Arbitration N° 4 2010/2011 (with Domitille Baizeau)
- “La 'cláusula fork in the road' y el arbitraje de inversión” (Fork in the Road Clauses in Investment Arbitration), in Arbitraje – Panorama actual del Arbitraje, Biblioteca de arbitraje del Estudio Mario Castillo Freyre. Palestra Editores, Volumen 13, Lima, 2011 (with Mario Castillo Freyre and Elena Sevila Sánchez)
- “Antisuit Injunctions – Medidas anti-procedimiento,” in Ponencias del Cuarto Congreso Internacional de Arbitraje 2010, Biblioteca de Arbitraje del Estudio Mario Castillo Freyre. Palestra Editores, Lima 2011
- “Drafting arbitration agreements – Switzerland,” in Comparative Smart Charts (Kluwer Law International Practice Tools, Audley Sheppard ed.), The Hague/London 2010 (with Domitille Baizeau)
- “Forma de la prueba” (Forms of evidence), in Ponencias del Tercer Congreso Internacional de Arbitraje 2009, Biblioteca de Arbitraje del Estudio Mario Castillo Freyre. Palestra Editores, Lima 2010
- “El Perú a la cabeza del arbitraje internacional en Latinoamérica” (Peru at the Helm of International Arbitration in Latin America), Jurídica (suplemento de análisis legal de El Peruano) 15 September 2009 issue, p. 2 (with Elena Sevila Sánchez)
- “IT-/Info-Flaschenhälse und Kartellrecht” (IT-Bottlenecks and Antitrust Law), Swiss Intellectual Property, Information and Competition Law Review 2/2007 (with Rolf H. Weber)
- Chapter “Switzerland,“ in The International Comparative & Legal Guide to Product Liability 2007 and 2006 (Global Legal Group, eds.), London 2007 and 2006 (with Marc S. Palay)
- “Die Verhandlung von US-amerikanischen Vertriebsverträgen“ (Negotiation of US Distribution Agreements), OSEC-Bulletin 2004 (with Danish Hamid)
- “Urheberkartellrecht – kartellrechtliche Kontrolle von urheberrechtlichen Märkten in der Schweiz“ (Interface between Copyright and Antitrust Law – antitrust control of copyright markets in Switzerland), Schweizer Schriften zum Handels-und Wirtschaftsrecht, Volume 228 (364 pages, Schulthess Polygraphischer Verlag) (Prof. Peter Forstmoser, ed.), Zurich 2004
- Book review of “Immaterialgüterrecht in der Wettbewerbsordnung“ (Intellectual Property Law and Competition Policy) by Prof. Andreas Heinemann, Swiss Intellectual Property, Information and Competition Law Review 6/2003
- Book review of “Schweizerisches Kartellrecht“ (Commentary on Swiss Antitrust Law) by Prof. Roger Zäch, Swiss Intellectual Property, Information and Competition Law Review 1/2000
- “Aktionsplan zur Förderung des elektronischen Geschäftsverkehrs in der Schweiz” (Action Plan for the Promotion of E-Commerce in Switzerland), Swiss Intellectual Property, Information and Competition Law Review 6/1998
- “Venture Capital in Spain,” European Corporate Lawyer 7/1997 (with José-María Beneyto)
- Pedro Jedlicka Zapata (CIERC)