PARVAN P. PARVANOV, ESQ.
I am an American-trained litigator and an international arbitration specialist with over fifteen years of legal experience. To date I have been involved in more than sixty international arbitration and litigation cases in commercial, investment, business-of-sports, and public international law disputes before ICC, ICSID, LCIA, ICDR, BCCI, VIAC, RCC, and UNCITRAL ad hoc tribunals, US and EU courts, as well as supra-national fora such as the European Court of Human Rights and the International Court of Justice.
Prior to qualifying in the US through a J.D. from Columbia Law School I was a practicing EU lawyer based in Sofia, Bulgaria (Mag. Iur., St. Klement Ohridsky, University of Sofia). The highlights of my practice in the EU included the defense of a sovereign in a set of international arbitration disputes with a joint-venture of construction heavyweights, the defense of the largest EU-wide contested merger before the European Commission, and various international arbitration and litigation matters involving IP, M&A, antitrust (hostile takeovers), cross-border commodities supply, complex infrastructure projects, and the energy (oil & gas and electricity production/distribution) industry.
After my transition to the US I spent time in three of the largest international arbitration practices out of Washington D.C., New York, and Paris, France. As part of these teams I have represented private parties and sovereign bodies in numerous high-stake construction, energy, global distribution, infrastructure, finance, insurance/reinsurance, and telecommunications disputes in commercial and investment arbitration cases.
In 2012, I accepted a position to serve as the Senior Researcher to the Chief Reporter on the Restatement of the US Law (III) of International Commercial Arbitration at the American Law Institute. I returned to full-time private practice in 2014 with the development of two ICSID investment arbitration cases in the renewable energy and banking industries in Europe. Around the same time I began to teach International Arbitration at the International Arbitration Training & Assistance Institute and the Fordham Law School. I have also been invited to teach at Columbia Law School.
In 2015, I founded the International Arbitration Chambers New York as my own independent international arbitration practice. In the past 5 years the practice grew by leaps and bounds becoming one of New York’s busiest specialized international arbitration practices. In 2020, the practice expanded its physical presence to London with the addition of Prof. Berk Demirkol who brings first-rate credentials and unparalleled depth to our investment arbitration offering.
- Mr. Plamen Genchev v. Bulsatcom Holding Limited (UNCITRAL ad hoc)(Mr. John Fellas, Ms. Juliet Blanch, Mr. Christopher Style, Q.C.)(opp. counsel Quinn Emmanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP)
International arbitration seated in London over the exercise of a call option under a Shareholders’ Deed governed by English law, regarding the acquisition of the largest independent telecommunications company in Southeast Europe. € 102 m. in dispute.
- Moti Ramot & Rami Levy v. The Republic of Bulgaria (ICSID Case No. ARB/18/47)(Prof. Stephan Schill, Dr. Bernardo Cremades, Ms. Loretta Malintoppi)(opp. counsel White & Case LLP)
Indirect expropriation case arising out of the judicial taking of a company that developed a luxury real estate project in Sofia, Bulgaria. The clients are one of the State of Israel’s most prominent entrepreneurs, Mr. Rami Levy, and his business partner on the affected project, the late Mr. Moti Ramot. $ 65 m. in dispute. Defeated Respondent’s discovery and bifurcation requests. Awaiting Counter-Memorial on jurisdiction, merits, and damages.
- EPIC Investments GmBh, NECA Ltd. v. Innova Capital Ltd., TRG Managment Co., Avicenna Capital Ltd. (ICC Case 21035/TO)(Ms . Audrey Caminades )(opp. counsel Clifford Chance LLP)
Complex commercial arbitration case arising out of unpaid advisory fees for one of Austria’s most active investment banking consultants against a consortium of private equity companies from the U.S. and the U.K., related to a failed deal, over the privatization of the legacy monopoly telecommunications company of Kosovo. Won settlement on the merits for more than double the original claims of my clients.
- PFC CSKA-Sofia EAD v. UEFA (CAS Case 5178)(Prof.Luigi Fumagalli, Ms.Dominique Brown-Berset, Mr.Arthur Gurovits)(opp.counsel UEFA (head of litigation) & Barr & Karrer LLP)
Represented a premier European football club in an emergency appeal against negative licensing determination by UEFA before the Court of Arbitration for Sports, Switzerland. The cases arose out of an alleged violation of the “three-year rule” as part of the new UEFA Financial Fair Play Rules. The rule is designed to prevent clubs from unloading debt through restructurings and the passing of sporting identities between corporations. The case went through intense interim relief stage in the summer of 2017 and several rounds of written submissions in the main appeal with hearings scheduled for 23 and 24 January 2018. UEFA was compelled to accept settlement on 1 March 2018 lifting the club’s ban in its entirety. The two cases are the only two on record to date where UEFA lost on a three-year-rule ban, and the sanctioned club was reinstated to European play.
- PFC CSKA-Sofia EAD v. UEFA (CAS Case 5201)(Prof.Luigi Fumagalli, Ms.Dominique Brown-Berset, Mr.Arthur Gurovits)(opp.counsel UEFA (head of litigation) & Barr & Karrer LLP)
Represented a premier European football club in an emergency appeal against unprecedented live-television removal from Europa League draw by the Secretary-General of UEFA, before the Court of Arbitration for Sports, Switzerland. The case went through intense interim relief stage and several rounds of written submissions in the main appeal. On 1 March 2018 UEFA was compelled to accept settlement granting full reinstatement of CSKA Sofia to European play.
- Space Systems/Loral, LLC v. Bulsatcom EAD (ICDR Case No. 01-18-0001-0869) and Space Systems/Loral, LLC v. Bulsatcom EAD (S.D.N.Y.)(James Carter, Arthur Rovine, Mark Alcott)(opp. counsel Pillsbury, Winthrop, Shaw & Pittman LLP – New York)
Defending the largest satellite television and internet provider on the Balkans on claims arising out of the structured financing of the purchase of a geostationary satellite, Bulgaria Sat-1, launched by SpaceX in June 2017. After full trial in the international arbitration and the related injunction proceedings in aid or arbitration before the federal district court in Manhattan, the case settled on favorable terms to my client Bulsatcom EAD. Amount in dispute included claims for $12 m. and counterclaims for over $100 m.
- Balkan Energy Limited (Ghana) v. The Government of Ghana PCA Case No. 2010-07 (Judge Steven M. Schwebel, Prof. Francisco Orrego Vicuña, Judge Stephen Mensah)
Defended the government of Ghana in $1,2 billion claims advanced by a US investor over the failed recommissioning of a power plant located on a barge in the Upper Volta region of Ghana. The tribunal ended up dismissing all but one claim awarding only $12,4 m.
- American Centennial Ins. Co. v. Global Int’l Reinsurance Co., 12 Civ. 1400 (PKC)(S.D.N.Y. July 9, 2012)
Represented an insurance company part of the Berkshire Hathaway Group in set-aside proceedings before the Federal District Court for the Southern District of New York related to a group of international arbitration awards against a UK reinsurance company. Amount in dispute $28 m.
- Commerce Group Corp. and San Sebastian Gold Mines, Inc. v. The Republic of El Salvador, ICSID Case No. ARB/09/17 (Annulment Proceedings)
Assisted with research in representing the government of El Salvador in annulment application of the investors against final award dismissing all claims against El Salvador on jurisdiction. The annulment application was eventually dismissed.
- Pac Rim Cayman LLC v. Republic of El Salvador, ICSID Case No. ARB/09/12 (Prof. Guido Santiago Tawil, Prof. Brigitte Stern, V. V. Veeder, Q.C.)
Assisted with research in representing the government of El Salvador in a dispute over a mining concession. The claims were for $ 314 m. and were eventually dismissed in their entirety.
- Swisslion DOO Skopje v. The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, ICSID Case No.ARB/09/16 (Judge Gillbert Guillaume, Mr. Daniel M. Price, Mr. J. Christopher Thomas Q.C.)
Assisted with research, drafting, and general case management a group of Swiss investors in North Macedonia on nvestment claims for the illegal taking of the investor’s business by the local judiciary. The Tribunal found in favor of the investors.
- Chile v. Peru (International Court of Justice, Case Nr. 137 General List)
Assisted with research and drafting, in the representation of Chile in a maritime border dispute with Peru involving an underlying fisheries business for over $2 billion.
- Total S.A. v. Argentine Republic (ICSID Case No. ARB/04/1)(Prof. Giorgio Sacerdoti, Sr. Luis Herrera Marcano; Mr. Henri C. Alvarez)
Assisted with research in the representation of Total on claims of illegal withdrawal of tariffs for the supply of natural gas and electricity by Argentina. The Tribunal awarded over $270 m. in damages
- Gas Natural SDG, S.A. v. Argentine Republic (ICSID Case No. ARB/03/10)(Prof. Andreas F. Lowenfeld, Mr. Henri C. Álvarez, Dr. Pedro Nikken)
Assisted with research in the representation of a Spanish investor in the natural gas production and distribution sector in Argentina on claims for $136 m.
- Pan American Energy LLC v. Plurinational State of Bolivia (ICSID Case No. ARB/10/8)(Francisco Orrego Vicuña, Rodrigo Oreamuno Blanco, Bernardo Cremades)
Assisted with research in the representation of a US investor in the investment arbitration case arising out of Bolivia’s nationalization of the Chaco Petroleum Company where the client held a 50% stake. The case settled on avorable terms to the investor.
- Crystallex International Corporation v. Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela (ICSID Case No. ARB(AF)/11/2)(Dr. Laurent Lévy; Dean John Y Gotanda, Prof. Laurence Boisson de Chazournes)
Assisted with research in the representation of a Canadian investor in the mining and natural resources exploration business on claims for expropriation against Venezuela. The Tribunal ended up awarding $1,2 billion in damages.
- Diners Club Ecuador S.A. v. Diners Club International Ltd (ICC Case No. 15540/JRF)
Assisted with research and drafted parts of extensive pleadings in a complex commercial arbitration case seated in London and involving a post-merger dispute between the US global operations of Diners Club and the global franchise’s Latin American operations. The contractual claims in dispute were for over $ 300 m.
- Major German Telecommunication Company v. Telco (LCIA)
Assisted with research in a LCIA arbitration in London involving disputes under a shareholders’ agreement between two large telecommunications companies.
- Ministry of Environment and Waters of Bulgaria v. Glavbolgarstroy et al. (UNCITRAL Ad Hoc)
Represented the Ministry of Environment and Waters before an ad hoc international dispute adjudication board established under the FIDIC Silver Book. The case arose out of a set of construction agreements to build six landfills and the associated waste processing facilities on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria. This arbitration concerned the landfill near the town of Pernik. The contractor claimed that despite the signed contract and the issued permits the government failed to secure free access to the site preventing the contractor to begin work on the landfill.
- Ministry of Environment and Waters of Bulgaria v. Glavbolgarstroy et al. (UNCITRAL Ad Hoc Mr. Brian W. Totterdill, Eng., Q.C.)
Represented the Ministry of Environment and Waters before an ad hoc international dispute adjudication board established under the FIDIC Red Book. The case arose out of a set of construction agreements to build six landfills and the associated waste processing facilities on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria, financed through European Union pre-accession funds. This particular arbitration concerned delay and unpaid adjustment claims by the contractor regarding the landfill and the processing facilities near the town of Lovech. The arbitrator ended up dismissing all of the contractor’s claims.
- Alpine GmBH v. Ministry of Energy of the Republic of Bulgaria (BCCI)
Represented an Austrian construction company in international arbitration proceedings before the Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce and Industry in a contractual dispute arising out of a set of construction agreements to build a hydro power plant on the Arda river in Bulgaria. The client was the general contractor on the largest dam and hydro power plant project in South-Eastern Europe “Upper Arda” partly financed through European Union pre-accession funds.
- The “Americanization” of the New York Convention by the Federal Courts in Manhattan – Unravelling the Origins of an Idiosyncratic Approach to “Non-Signatories” at the Enforcement Stage, 2 TDM 2020 (Voorburg, The Netherlands) 17:2, February 2020 https://www.transnational-dispute-management.com/journal-advance-publication-article.asp?key=1746#citation
- Determining the Standard of Review for Jurisdictional Findings of Foreign Seated International Arbitration Tribunals by the Federal Courts in Manhattan: A Study in the Americanization of the New York Convention, AM. REV. INT’L ARB. (2021) (upcoming).
- Comparing U.S. Law And U.S. Investment Agreements: Much More Similar than You Might Expect, Co-Author with Mark Kantor, INT’L INV. L. & POL. Y.B. 2010-2011, Oxford Univ. Press
- Corporate Restructuring: Obtaining Effective Investment Treaty Protection for Domestic and Foreign Investors in Bulgaria Amid Spiking Political Risk and the Termination of the Bulgaria’s Intra-EU Bilateral Investment Treaty Program, Capital Quarterly, limited distribution, available in print only.
- “Do not expect strategic capital to enter in this environment,” CAPITAL WEEKLY (in Bulgarian)
- International Protection of Foreign Investors and the Price of Administrative Arbitrariness, February 7, 2016, CAPITAL WEEKLY (in Bulgarian)
- The Dearest Arbitration (What the ‘Belene’ Arbitrations Will Revolve Around), August 2, 2013, CAPITAL WEEKLY (in Bulgarian)
- The Hidden Duality of the Summary Disposition of Claims in Investment Arbitration, available at https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1934534
- Columbia Law School, New York
- International Arbitration Training & Assistance Institute, New York
- Fordham Law School, New York