Welcome to ILN-terviews, a series of profiles of ILN member firm attorneys, designed to give a unique insight into the lawyers who make up our Network.
For our latest interview, you get two for the price of one, with responses from two of our lovely lawyers, Sebastian López-Sansón and Rafael Salaberren Dupont, with new member firm, Salaberren & López-Sansón Abogados (SyLS), in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
In one sentence, how would you describe your practice?
Rafael heads the Corporate-Finance practice of SyLS which comprises M&A, General Corporate and Corporate-Finance transactions; Sebastian leads the tax practice of the firm; and they both co-ordinate the internal teams within the firm to make sure the firm’s motto is achieved, which is to provide an excellent, sophisticated, fully blended corporate-law / tax-law- service, tailor made to the needs of each of our clients.
Who would be your typical client?
We represent companies, funds and institutions both in domestic and cross-border transactions. Most of our clients are global entities doing business in Argentina in several industries including, among others, food & beverages, technology, power, real estate, financial and consulting services, etc. It is, most of all, inbound investments that we serve.
What would you like clients and potential clients to know about you?
That we are a quite unique firm in Argentina. We are recognized as the leading boutique firm in business law and tax in the country with a very direct and personal approach specialized in representing global entities doing business in Argentina; again, inbound investment is key to our model.
What has been your most challenging case?
After the 2001/2002 Argentine economic crisis, the representation of international clients in the wide-spread defaults of almost every argentine issuer and borrower that resulted in negotiations and legal actions of billions of dollars in restructuring transactions, insolvency proceedings and M&A transactions of distressed assets, in the context of a total political and economic instability and uncertainty.
What has been your proudest moment as a lawyer?
When we both founded SyLS. We were able to think, model, shape, implement and conduct our own firm dream.
What do you do when you’re not practicing law?
We both spend most of our time with our wives and kids. Rafael loves to horse ride and competes in horse endurance races. And Sebas does some Alpine touring and kitesurfing, while also trying to learn other disciplines across human knowledge – it is quite an ambitious goal.
What would surprise people most about you?
Rafael says “I don’t want to spoil the surprise.”
What has been your most memorable ILN experience?
We have recently joined the ILN and we are very satisfied with the Network so far. Firms seem to have a very similar profile and approach.
What career would you have chosen if you weren’t a lawyer?
Rafael, something in the Agribusiness industry probably; and Sebas, maybe physics or math?, but in any case, ultimately applied to business.
If a movie were made about your life, who would you want to play you?
Rafael says Mark Ruffalo.
How would you like to be remembered?
Rafael says “I would love to achieve being a good father, a good husband, a good son, a good brother, a good friend, a good employer, a good partner, and a good lawyer. In other words if I achieve all that I guess that would make me a good person.”
Sebastian says “Rafa is definitively an excellent partner, that I can tell, so at least, one down for him! As to myself, that is not an easy question to answer. I believe that I would love to be very well regarded by people around me, just as Rafael mentioned, and I also think that I would like to be remembered as someone who quite understood how the world works, and the intricacies of human nature – and that my funeral be very well attended!”