Our highly experienced team of dispute resolution specialists regularly act in domestic and international arbitrations.

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​​​​​Arbitration is a common alternative to litigation for commercial parties who seek confidentiality, expedience and procedural flexibility in resolving their disputes. While it has its own unique legal framework and rules of practice, many of the most effective practices are borne of practical experience rather than hard and fast rules.

Our highly experienced team of dispute resolution specialists regularly act in domestic and international arbitrations across a wide range of industries. We are experienced in advising clients on the arbitration process, appearing as advocates in arbitration proceedings, and in advising clients on the drafting of arbitration clauses before any dispute arises. We have an extensive network of local and international contacts that we can utilise for both party appointed arbitrators and tribunal chairpersons.

Our arbitration specialists sit within the broader litigation team. Bell Gully’s litigation team is widely acknowledged as the strongest in New Zealand and deals with complex and contentious commercial disputes in all areas.

Danone dispute with Fonterra
We acted for Danone in an UNCITRAL international arbitration in Singapore against Fonterra following the August 2013 whey protein concentrate botulism scare. Working as co-counsel with Simpson Thacher (London), in November 2017 we obtained an award that Fonterra pay Danone €105 million (NZ$183 million). Fonterra had provisioned only NZ$11 million for the dispute, reflecting what it described as its "maximum contractual liability to Danone". 

Reinsura​​​nce dispute
Acted for an international reinsurance company in the arbitration of a reinsurance dispute with the insurers of Christchurch City Council following the Canterbury earthquakes.

Cancella​​​tion of an agreement for sale of a mine
Acted for an overseas client in an arbitration and related court proceedings in New Zealand following the cancellation of an agreement for the sale and purchase of an ironsands mine.

Shareholding agreement d​​​etermination of fair value
Acted for a large wine manufacturer, in an arbitration to determine the fair value of a shareholding agreement with a contract winemaking company.

Deferred payme​​​nt revenue
Acted for one of the largest global providers of advanced products and services for the drilling, evaluation, completion, production and intervention cycles of oil and natural gas wells in an arbitration relating to deferred payment revenue under a sale and purchase agreement.

​Contract price ad​​​justment
Acted in an arbitration to determine a price adjustment under a contract relating to monitored medical alarms.

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  • Jenny Stevens

    Partner Wellington
  • Sophie East

    Partner Auckland