de leading firm 2024.png

The Legal 500 Germany 2024

Corporate Law

Friedrich Graf von Westphalen & Partner regularly advises medium-sized companies as well as German and international groups (primarily from the life sciences sector) on a wide range of corporate law issues, including company formations, reorganizations of group structures, international joint ventures, general meetings and corporate governance. The practice is managed across all offices: Cologne-based transaction specialist Arnt GöppertAnnette Bödeker in Frankfurt, who regularly advises listed companies, Alexander Hartmann, who is based in Berlin and focuses mainly on venture capital and M&A with a particular focus on the technology sector, and Albert Schröder and Hendrik Thies in Freiburg, who are both dedicated to commercial, corporate and tax law. Christina Schröter (M&A in the healthcare sector) joined from VOELKER & Partner in September 2022.

"Excellent know-how on the situation of start-ups, not only directly from a legal perspective, but also with its business implications. Close, unique support during our foundation."

"Very business-oriented and good at understanding the client's needs. The advantage of being able to communicate complex legal issues in English was a blessing. The approach to invoicing was well thought out throughout."

"Very good communication within the team."+


Friedrich Graf von Westphalen & Partner focuses on advising large, medium-sized and internationally active family businesses and listed companies on national and international mid-cap transactions, merger control issues and FDI matters; its client base primarily comes from the healthcare, medical device and automotive industries, with start-ups also playing an increasing role. Real estate expert Arnt Göppert, technology transaction specialist Alexander Hartmann and Stefan Lammel, who advises on corporate law, tax law and corporate succession, jointly head the practice. Hendrik Thies and Jan Henning Martens focus on advising clients from the healthcare sector, including medical device manufacturers and pharmaceutical companies.

"Good cooperation between the different legal areas and locations."

juve top 50 wirtschaftskanzlei deutschland 2023 24 192x315.jpg

JUVE Handbook of Commercial Law Firms - FGvW is Top-50 law firm

The JUVE Handbook of Commercial Law Firms in Germany 2023/2024 was again published at the end of October. As in previous years, Friedrich Graf von Westphalen & Partner has maintained its position among Germany's TOP-50 law firms.

Among other areas, we are highlighted for M&A and Corporate Law.

Particularly recommended lawyers for M&A are Hendrik Thies ("pleasantly solution-oriented"), Stefan Lammel ("always good cooperation"), Jan Martens, Alexander Hartmann ("hands-on and very intelligent"), Annette Bödeker ("very experienced in US business"), Christina Schröter, Meike Kapp-Schwoerer and Arnt Göppert.

Further recommended lawyers for Corporate Law are Carsten Laschet ("excellent negotiating skills, very good cooperation"; in particular directors' and officers' liability), Hendrik Thies (also capital markets law), Arnt Göppert, Annette Bödeker (in particular international clients), Alexander Hartmann ("solution-oriented, drafting specialist"), Albert Schröder (in particular restructuring and arbitration proceedings).

Legal 500 Germany 2023 Leading Firm 100x145

The Legal 500 Germany 2023

Corporate Law

Friedrich Graf von Westphalen & Partner advises clients from German and international medium-sized companies on all corporate law issues, with a particular focus on companies from the life sciences and healthcare sectors. Expertise exists primarily on corporate law aspects in connection with M&A, corporate governance and contract law, as well as in the area of litigation, often acting in manager liability proceedings. Since August 2022, the practice group has been co-led by transaction specialists Arnt Göppert and Annette Bödeker, transformation expert Albert Schröder, commercial lawyer Hendrik Thies and financing lawyer Alexander Hartmann.


The M&A team at Friedrich Graf von Westphalen & Partner acts for family-owned companies as well as listed corporations in Germany and abroad, with a particular focus on the healthcare, real estate and technology sectors; start-ups in the mid-market segment are also a focus for the practice, which supports them from formation to sale. Arnt Göppert and Alexander Hartmann advise on portfolio transactions as well as financing and restructuring, while Stefan Lammel provides expertise on company acquisitions and sales as well as tax, insolvency and corporate law issues. Hendrik Thies and Jan Henning Martens act with a focus on transactions in the healthcare and pharmaceutical sectors.

JUVE Wirtschaftskanzleien 2023/2023

JUVE Handbook of Commercial Law Firms 2022/2023 - FGvW is TOP-50 law firm

The JUVE Handbook of Commercial Law Firms in Germany 2022/2023 was published again in October: Friedrich Graf von Westphalen & Partner has - as in previous years - maintained its position among the TOP-50 law firms in Germany.

We are also particularly highlighted in corporate law and M&A.

Frequently recommended in corporate law are Carsten Laschet (especially directors' and officers' liability), Hendrik Thies ("very nice, we recommend in case of conflict"; also capital markets law), Arnt Göppert (e.g. media companies), Annette Bödeker (especially international clients), Alexander Hartmann.

Recommended in M&A are Hendrik Thies, Stefan Lammel ("very efficient", "always good cooperation"), Jan Henning Martens, Alexander Hartmann ("excellent lawyer, fast and solution-oriented").

The Legal 500 Germany 2022 - Leading Firm 140x96

The Legal 500 Germany 2022


The corporate team is led by Gerhard Manz, Barbara Mayer and Arnt Göppert and specializes in advising mid-sized companies as well as German and international corporations from various industries, including recently increasingly the healthcare sector. The team covers the full range of corporate law, from contract drafting to restructuring and conflicts. If necessary, colleagues from the IP, insurance and distribution law groups are brought in. Annette Bödeker (venture capital and compliance in addition to corporate and M&A) joined in March 2021 from the now-defunct Arnold & Porter unit. Another core lawyer is Alexander Hartmann.

M&A (mid-sized deals)

FGvW's team is regularly mandated by German family businesses and start-ups as well as by foreign groups and listed companies for transactions in the mid-market segment. The close exchange with the firm's liability and insurance law specialists is particularly noteworthy in this regard. Gerhard Manz, whose practice area includes corporate finance advice, corporate and commercial law expert Barbara Mayer and Arnt Göppert, contact for funds and financial institutions, share the practice group leadership. Other core lawyers are Hendrik Thies and Jan Henning Martens.

juve top 50 wirtschaftskanzlei deutschland 2021 22 klein.jpg

JUVE Handbook of Business Law Firms 2021/2022

Corporate Law

Comment: FGvW's corporate team, which is spread across all four offices, is known for its many years of advice to the upper Mittelstand. After the firm caused a surprise in 2020 with the opening of an office in Berlin and the establishment of a notary's office in Ffm, it succeeded in spring in bringing Bödeker, previously head of corporate at US firm Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer, on board. She has numerous contacts in the healthcare sector, in which FGvW is already positioned in many ways, including Getinge and Schölly Fiberoptic. The fact that the practice around Manz and Mayer is also well-versed in capital markets law was recently demonstrated by the reverse IPO between mic AG and Pyramid Computer, which fitted in well with the SPAC wave on the stock exchange.

Strengths: Very good international network. Experience with complex holding structures, cross-border mergers and post-merger disputes. Particular expertise in the healthcare sector.

Often recommended: Barbara Mayer, Gerhard Manz, Carsten Laschet, Tobias Lenz ("very experienced and competent", competitor), Hendrik Thies, Alexander Hartmann ("fast and solution-oriented, very good understanding of complex issues, pleasant working relationship", competitor).

Team: 12 Eq. Partners, 2 Sal. Partners, 13 Associates, 2 Of Counsel

Partner changes: Annette Bödeker (from Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer), Ben Elsner (retired)

Focus: Development and optimization of holding structures. Shareholder, AGM and board consulting, incl. corporate governance. Broad start-up consulting. Succession planning. Close connection to M&A. Strong practice in directors' and officers' liability/D&O (insurance law) and corporate disputes. Complex arbitration proceedings.

Clients: Pyramid Computer on reverse IPO/acquisition by mic AG; architecture firm on restructuring; Getinge on roll-out of corporate governance policy at German subsidiaries. Schölly Fiberoptic on Aesculap's share increase; Sympatient on convertible loan; accounting firm on departure of principal shareholder; claims settlement service provider on compliance review; Getinge, Endress+Hauser and Maquet Medical Systems in arbitration proceedings; Moving Content, Degussa Bank, Diotec Group, Zahoransky AG on AGM. Celebrity News on AGM and special audit; ongoing: Alba Services Holding; Aston Martin UK, Ausy Group; Herder Group.


Comment: The focus of FGvW's M&A practice is on mid-cap transactions for upmarket Mittelstand companies and groups. It is no coincidence that the firm is seen alongside Knauf Gips and mechanical engineering firm Meiko, where it is also in demand for its experience in international M&A business. After FGvW had already expanded and built up transaction-flanking areas such as real estate, labor and tax law in recent years, it recently added a trademark team in Frankfurt, which specializes in strategic IP development for companies. This is a good complement to sector-specific transaction advice, which FGvW had already promoted in the healthcare sector before the Corona pandemic, for instance, and in which it has once again broadened its base with the addition of a lateral with US experience.

Strengths: Cross-border mid-cap deals. Good, international networking in the healthcare sector. Well-established South America desk.

Often recommended: Barbara Mayer, Gerhard Manz, Hendrik Thies ("pleasantly solution-oriented", competitor), Stefan Lammel, Jan Martens, Alexander Hartmann ("fantastic market overview and very pragmatic cooperation!", client).

Team: 11 Eq. Partners, 2 Sal. Partners, 14 Associates

Change of partner: Annette Bödeker (from Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer)

Focus: Transactions for family-owned companies and German subsidiaries of internat. corporations. Cross-border work. Good competence in healthcare. Distressed M&A, also closely linked to labor law, as well as pre- and post-M&A structural work due to overlap with corporate practice.

Clients: owner of Cranach Pharma on share swap with Medios AG; shareholder and CEO of VDS Verkehrstechnik on sale to Quarterhill; shareholder on sale of Pyramid Computer; Schölly Fiberoptic on sale of majority stake in Aesculap; Badausstatter on purchase of online retailer; Hellma Materials on purchase of crystal growing division of Jenoptik; Xilinx on purchase of Silexica; shareholder of waste disposal company on sale to major competitor; Outerscore GmbH on purchase of minority stake.

Legal 500 Logo 124x85

The Legal 500 Germany 2021


Friedrich Graf von Westphalen's company law practice is said to have "broad expertise with outstanding specialists". The thematic focus is on company and post-M&A disputes, on reorganizations and restructurings, as well as on issues of corporate succession and inheritance law. The Berlin office opened in May 2020 with company lawyer Alexander Hartmann and two other partners. Gerhard Manz ("outstanding personality"), Barbara Mayer ("very pragmatic, also seeks ways outside the typical legal solution alternatives") and Arnt Göppert ("excellent knowledge and sense of the overall context") are practice leaders.

M&A (mergers and acquisitions)

The M&A practice group is led by Gerhard ManzBarbara MayerArnt Göppert and also includes Alexander Hartmann, who opened the firm's Berlin office in May 2020, as another core lawyer. When advising on national and cross-border transactions, the interfaces with IP, competition, real estate, labor and insurance law can also be covered. There is particular experience in the automotive and healthcare sectors.

juve logo 145x99  id 220536   id 221124 .jpg

JUVE Handbook Business Law Firms 2020/2021 Corporate Law


FGvW's corporate law team is often called upon when shareholder agreements are to be revised, shareholdings re-sorted and corporate structures withdrawn in the upper mid-sized sector. Such mandates often result as post-M&A business from the internationally well-connected transaction practice and from the established advice on inheritance and liability law. Recently, however, FGvW set the course for the expansion of the business: In April, it established a notary's office in Frankfurt with additional staff from Gerns & Partner. In addition, the firm ventured into the Berlin start-up and real estate market with lateral hires in Berlin. The fact that the team also included a tax lawyer now enables the structuring of corporate/M&A projects. The offer is rounded off by many years of experience with questions of directors' and officers' liability in Cologne.

Practice strengths: Very good international network, experience with complex holding structures, cross-border mergers and post-merger disputes. Special expertise in the healthcare sector.

Often recommended: Barbara Mayer ("excellent consultant, experienced and tough", competitor), Gerhard Manz, Carsten Laschet, Tobias Lenz ("pragmatic, solution-oriented", competitor), Hendrik Thies

Team: 12 equity partners, 2 salary partners, 12 associates, 2 of counsel

Change of partners: Christoph Börskens (from Gerns & Partner), Alexander Hartmann (from BRL Boege Rohde Luebbehuesen)

Focal points: Development and optimization of holding structures. Corporate Governance. Startup consulting and succession planning. Close connection to M&A. Strong practice in D&O (insurance law) and corporate litigation. Complex appraisal rights proceedings.

Clients: Schölly Fiberoptic on carve-out of the robotic endoscopy business; Essilor Group on shifting of shares in German subsidiaries; Getinge on implementation of corporate governance; Heritage B on revision of articles of association and restructuring of the company. Restructuring in Germany; JobRad on the formation of a holding and leasing company; anchor shareholder on the IPO of Centogene; Festo on group structure; Getinge, Endress+Hauser and Maquet Medical Systems in appraisal rights proceedings; Pulsion Medical, Degussa Bank AG, Diotec Group on AGM. Current: Herder Group, Neuroloop.


Mid-cap transactions for upscale medium-sized companies and corporations are the core business of FGvW's M&A practice. The team scores with a well-established international best-friend network and industry expertise, for example in the health care and insurance sectors. Meanwhile, the younger generation stands out from the two Freiburg partners Mayer and Manz with a clear focus on areas such as the interface to real estate law, the startup sector and the health care sector, and succession planning and distressed M&A. The core team has been significantly strengthened by experienced lateral hires in Frankfurt and Berlin, who have long-standing contacts in the real estate industry and the startup scene. In addition to Hartmann, these included a tax advisor, so that FGvW can now flank its transaction advice with tax and fund structuring.

Strengths: Cross-border mid-cap deals. Good networking in the healthcare sector. Well-rehearsed South America desk.

Often recommended: Barbara Mayer ("excellent, experienced and tough", competitors), Gerhard Manz, Hendrik Thies, Stefan Lammel, Jan Martens

Team: 10 equity partners, 2 salary partners, 13 associates

Change of partner: Alexander Hartmann (from BRL Boege Rohde Luebbehuesen)
Focal points: Transactions for family businesses and German subsidiaries of international corporations. Cross-border work. Good competence in health care. Distressed M&A, also closely related to labor law, as well as pre- and post-M&A structural work through personnel overlap with corporate law practice.

Clients: Conductix-Wampfler on acquisition of LJU Automatic; Swiss Automotive Group on investment in Autoteile Pöllath; Blazejewski Medi-Tech on investment by SHS; Fifty2 Technology on investment by AVL List; Fischer Küchenatelier on takeover by Mandemakers; sympathetic partner in financing round; Oxygen Technologies on investment by Centralschweizerische Kraftwerke; PME Fluidtec and shareholder in company sale; Schölly Fiberoptic on sale of robotic endoscopy business.

Legal 500 Logo 124x85

The Legal 500 Germany 2020

Corporate law is managed "highly professionally and client-oriented" under the direction of Barbara Mayer and Gerhard Manz (Freiburg) and Arnt Göppert (Cologne).

"Feedback comes promptly and the professional expertise is outstanding. "Fast and reliable."

In the area of M&A (medium-sized deals), this "extremely experienced" team covers not only national and cross-border transaction support for Mittelstand and family-run companies, but also the real estate, medical technology and automotive sectors.

"Extensive knowledge and very fast implementation of the M&A framework". "High quality and a large number of transaction experts."

1:1. This is how we work together. You decide upon a competent partner; he/she will then remain your point of contact. > more