Practice

International & United States Commercial Arbitration

A path to resolution of contract disputes

Both in the United States and internationally, Foley Hoag’s commercial arbitration practice represents clients, including States, State-owned and private entities, individuals, and not-for-profit institutions in a wide variety of contractual disputes, including those involving construction, agribusiness, intellectual property and conventional and renewable energy.

Foley Hoag’s international commercial arbitration practice, led by Daniel Schimmel together with Christina Hioureas and Stephen Younger in the New York office, advises clients in a wide variety of contractual disputes, including those involving construction and infrastructure projects, life sciences, agribusiness, aviation, financial services, intellectual property, oil and gas, and clean energy. John A. Shope, in the firm’s Boston office, leads the domestic arbitration practice.

Our multilingual team has acted under the rules of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), American Arbitration Association, International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR), London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA), Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce (SCC), JAMS, International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution (CPR), the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), SIAC, the World Bank’s International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), and Swiss Rules. We also handle cases administered by the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague (PCA), the Paris Center for Mediation and Arbitration (CMAP), and the Singapore International Arbitration Center.  

We have handled cases seated in Bangladesh, Cyprus, Greece, France, Israel, Liechtenstein, Panama, the Netherlands, Singapore, Sweden, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and across the United States, applying the laws of Bangladesh, Chile, Cyprus, England & Wales, Liechtenstein, France, Ghana, Greece, India, Israel, the Netherlands, Peru, Switzerland, Sweden, and various different U.S. States (including California, Delaware, Florida, New York, Washington, D.C., Texas, among others).

Many of our attorneys frequently serve as presiding, sole, emergency co-arbitrators, and appellate arbitrators in complex international and domestic arbitration disputes in a variety of sectors under ICSID, ICC, ICDR, AAA, LCIA, UNCITRAL, Swiss Rules, CPR, SIAC, FINRA and other rules.

Areas of Focus

Our extensive experience with international commercial arbitration include:
  • Energy disputes (wind, solar, hydroelectric, gas, oil, and coal, power plants and power purchase agreements)
  • Mining disputes 
  • Construction disputes 
  • Hotel & casino construction disputes project 
  • Hotel and resort construction and management
  • Roadway, waterway, and civil works projects
  • Intellectual property licensing
  • Mergers & acquisitions, joint venture agreements, shareholder disputes
  • Construction projects, including petroleum and mining
  • Roadway, waterway and civil works projects
  • Telecommunications projects and equipment and services supply
  • Computer systems and services
  • Banking and financial services
  • Aviation equipment and services
  • Insurance and reinsurance 
  • Purchase, sale and distribution of goods and services
  • Employment and consulting contracts
  • Cyber security and privacy matters
  • Fashion and textiles

Experience

Our attorneys represent or have represented the following clients, or served as arbitrators, in the following international and domestic commercial arbitrations:
 
CLEAN/RENEWABLE ENERGY
  • A South Asian State agency in an ICC arbitration brought by a solar energy over the latter’s breach of a power purchase agreement for the construction and operation of a solar power plant, resulting in a complete victory.
  • Three affiliated companies in two related Panamanian-seated ICC arbitrations under Panamanian law against three South American companies for the breach of an agreement for the acquisition of a minority stake in a sugar mill and a biomass energy company.
  • Three affiliated companies, in two related ICC arbitrations, involving the breach of a contract for the management and administration of sugar cane plantations.
  • A U.S.-based renewable energy project developer, in a CPR arbitration applying New York law against a Canadian supplier of solar photovoltaic modules for non-payment.
  • A U.S.-based energy company in an arbitration under the Swiss Rules of International Arbitration in a dispute arising out of power plant construction projects in Russia.
  • The owner of an energy plant in Brazil in an ICC arbitration brought against an engineering and construction contractor.
  • The Philippines in an ICC arbitration in Lausanne, Switzerland, for hundreds of millions of dollars, over defects in the design and construction of a nuclear power plant.
  • A U.S. bank on a pre-arbitration claim to the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) regarding the expropriation of a power plant in Latin America.
  • An independent power producer in an AAA arbitration in Washington, D.C., against a retail utility over a fuel clause in power purchase agreements.

OIL & GAS DRILLING AND CONSTRUCTION
  • A State-owned oil company in a commercial arbitration under ICSID rules pertaining to a tax dispute over a lucrative venture in an oil and gas field.
  • Two State-owned oil companies in an ICSID arbitration brought by a Canadian gas company requesting a declaration that it was not liable for any damage caused by two blowouts in a gas field it operated.
  • Two State-owned oil companies in an ICSID arbitration relating to the payment of invoices for gas sold and purchased by a private company.
  • A South Asian State and its State-owned oil & gas corporation in ICSID arbitration proceedings regarding a concession to explore, develop and exploit natural gas fields.
  • A State-owned oil company in an UNCITRAL arbitration administered by SIAC arising from a Drilling Contract Agreement for the drilling of onshore gas-wells.
  • A Latin American State in an UNCITRAL arbitration stemming from a contract between the State-owned oil and gas transport company and a private company for the installation and setup of a pier, deposit and transport system for liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).
  • An African State and its National Petroleum corporation in an arbitration pursuant of UNCITRAL rules and administered by the SCC, brought by the holder of a hydrocarbon license
  • A European petroleum consortium in an insurance ICC dispute. The arbitral award found coverage applicable and awarded the amounts sought by the insured Claimant. The arbitration was followed by recognition and enforcement measures in the United States, Germany and France, including defending against a petition to set aside in France.
  • A major oil producer against a fellow major oil producer in ad hoc U.S. arbitration, over allocation of environmental remediation costs.

GAS PRICING AND ITS RENEGOTIATION
  • A State-owned gas company in an UNCITRAL arbitration arising from a change in market fundamentals in connection with the pricing clause of a gas supply and purchase agreement with a private company.
  • A European energy company, as respondent in an ICC arbitration, involving a gas pricing revision and gas shortages claims.
  • A European energy company, as claimant in an ICC arbitration, involving gas price revision and influence of hubs on market pricing.
  • An energy company in gas price revision negotiations with a gas supplier.

CONSTRUCTION AND PUBLIC WORKS
  • A State-owned oil company in an ICC arbitration brought against the operator of a petroleum block, and its co-concessionaires and guarantors. The dispute arose out of the operator’s attempt to force the termination of the block’s license contract by undergoing voluntary liquidation, thereby escaping contractual and environmental remediation obligations.
  • A Latin American local government in two related contract-based arbitrations arising from a dispute concerning the calculation and adjustment of tolls charged as part of a contract to construct and refurbish certain main roadways.
  • A Latin American local government in two contract-based arbitrations under UNCITRAL Rules, related to the refurbishment and operation of three branches of a major highway and the implementation of various toll increases.
  • A South American State-owned oil company in defense of an eight-figure claim over gas injection infrastructure in arbitration before the ICC in New York.
  • A French offshore construction firm in a London-seated ICC arbitration involving numerous disputes regarding four drilling and gas gathering platforms and related pipelines for an oil field in offshore Nigeria. 
  • A Malaysian oil company in arbitrations under the Rules of the American Arbitration Association and the Rules of the Maritime Arbitrators Association in Houston over claims related to the rehabilitation of a drilling rig.
  • A major offshore construction firm in an ICDR arbitration in Houston under New York law relating to the installation of offshore piles that were to serve as foundations to anchor various offshore oil production facilities.
  • The Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy of a Balkan State, in an ICC arbitration concerning the termination of an FIDIC contract for the construction of a wastewater collection and treatment system.

MINING SECTOR
  • Brazilian clients in the mining industry against their Japanese joint venture partner in an international arbitration in New York under the ICDR Rules.
  • A mining corporation incorporated in the United Kingdom in a dispute with its U.S. joint venture partner regarding the exercise of the right of first refusal.
  • A State-owned mining company in South America in ICDR arbitration in New York and Washington, D.C. over rehabilitation of a power plant serving the mine and the surrounding community.
  • A European/Latin American construction consortium in a Spanish-language ICC arbitration in Bolivia related to the construction of a water transfer tunnel.
  • A Japanese trading company in an ICC arbitration brought by a Turkish construction company related to the construction of a hydroelectric facility in Turkey.
  • A French construction company in pre-arbitration conciliation proceedings in Singapore against an Asian government under European Development Fund Rules.
  • A South American sovereign in defense of a nine-figure subway construction delay claim before ICSID.
  • A U.S. company in a proceeding before the International Centre for Dispute Resolution of the American Arbitration Association against a Chilean mining company concerning the breach of a copper supply contract.

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LICENSING
  • A major French group against a company in the People’s Republic of China in an ICC arbitration in Hong Kong arising from a patent licensing agreement.
  • A Scandinavian developer and distributor of health care diagnosis packages in an ICC arbitration. An American manufacturer of tests that determine risk of heart disease initiated the proceedings. The Claimant sought the recovery of damages resulting from the breach of the parties' license and development agreement.
  • A large European and American biotechnology corporation in connection with a dispute over royalties alleged to be due under a licensing agreement for patented technology.
  • A publicly traded American mechanical device manufacturer in patent infringement and licensing arbitrations before the ICDR in San Francisco.
  • A publicly traded medical information and diagnostics company in a dispute over enforcement of a right of first refusal in ICDR arbitration, in Indianapolis, Indiana.

JOINT VENTURE PROJECTS
  • A U.S.-based private equity fund organized under Cayman law against a Japanese trading conglomerate with respect to management of a power plant in North Africa in the ICDR.
  • An Omani entity as Claimant in an ICC arbitration against a French entity alleging breach of a joint venture agreement. 
  • A major European electronics and defense firm in an ICDR arbitral dispute with an American defense contractor in a dispute related to a joint venture agreement for the design and development of sonar equipment for mapping the ocean bed.
  • An emerging American telecommunications provider in an LCIA arbitration against an African incumbent national telecommunications public utility. We helped to resolve an alleged breach of a joint venture agreement.

HOTEL AND RESORT CONSTRUCTION AND MANAGEMENT
  • A prominent hotel brand in ICC arbitration in Paris over alleged breach of management agreements in Europe, Africa and Asia.
  • A southern European tour operator in a lease dispute in a French-language ICC arbitration relating to a large resort complex in the Indian Ocean.
  • An ICC arbitration arising from a hotel development and management agreement and technical services agreement relating to the development and management of a hotel.

TELECOMMUNICATIONS PROJECTS AND EQUIPMENT AND SERVICES SUPPLY
  • A major European telecommunications group against a U.S. telecommunications group in an international arbitration arising from an M&A transaction.
  • A consortium of American, Canadian, German and Japanese companies in ICC proceedings against the Islamic Republic of Iran regarding claims over the construction of a nationwide telecommunications system.
  • A major telecommunications company against a German company in an ICC international arbitration in New York regarding the ownership of patents.

PHARMACEUTICALS / MEDICAL
  • An ICDR arbitration arising from a novel question as to the enforceability of an oral settlement agreement made on the eve of the issuance of an arbitral award.
  • An LCIA arbitration arising from a cybersecurity breach in connection with the purchase and sale of personal protective equipment (PPE) during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States. The breach resulted in hacked bank accounts and lost revenues.
  • An ICC arbitration concerning an intellectual property and trade usage dispute derived from a distribution agreement for the sale and purchase of a product employing ultrasound waves to alleviate pain and avoid surgery and opioids.

COMPUTER SYSTEMS AND SERVICES
  • Various tech companies incorporated in Singapore in a series of related international arbitration claims for breach of contract and fraud.
  • An India-based software consulting firm in arbitration brought by a U.S. telecommunications utility over implementation of CRM software before the ICDR in Palo Alto, California.
  • A French systems integrator in an UNCITRAL arbitration against a claim raised by a Russian bank for breach of contract.
  • A leading manufacturer of computers in defense of a class of consumer claims before CPR.

AVIATION EQUIPMENT AND SERVICES
  • A German aircraft lessor in an ICC arbitration in Paris arising from a failed transaction with a Mexican airline.
  • A North American-based designer and manufacturer of flight simulators against a European manufacturer of short- and mid-range turboprop aircraft in an arbitral dispute under the auspices of the Canadian Commercial Arbitration Centre in Montreal. 

PURCHASE, SALE AND DISTRIBUTION OF GOODS AND SERVICES 
  • A Canadian company in international arbitration against Chinese manufacturer of goods under the ICDR Rules.  The arbitration involves claims for the delivery of defective goods as well as breach of exclusivity obligations.
  • An American instrumentation company against its distributor in Colombia. 
  • A British instrumentation company against its distributor in Asia
  • A fuel wholesaler in an AAA arbitration in Washington, D.C., over a biodiesel purchase agreement with a supplier.
  • A client in an ICC arbitration concerning the breach of a distribution agreement applicable to the Spanish market. 
  • A client in an ICC arbitration related to the discontinuation of an agreement governed by French law calling for the setting up and management of collection and recycling networks for electrical and electronic waste in half a dozen western European countries.
  • A leading North American car parts manufacturer in an ICC claim against an Eastern European car manufacturer relating to unpaid invoices for numerous deliveries of parts. 
  • A seafood distributor against a warehouse operator in arbitration of a seven-figure claim for product damage before the American Arbitration Association in Dallas, Texas.
  • A publicly traded medical device manufacturer in a dispute over supply and distribution agreements with OEM in an ad hoc arbitration in New Jersey.

AUDITING AND FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS
  • A major U.S. bank in a complex multi-party ICC arbitration, and related litigation in aid of arbitration, concerning the control of a major Brazilian telecommunications company.
  • A publicly traded global medical device company in arbitration against an insurer before JAMS in Boston.
  • A Big Four U.S. accounting firm in defense of a CPR arbitration in New York initiated by its audit client.
  • A publicly traded multi-national healthcare firm in a post-closing working capital adjustment dispute before a neutral accounting firm in Philadelphia.
  • A venture capital firm in defense of a claim by a co-investor of self-dealing and wrongful dilution in arbitration before the AAA in New York.

EMPLOYMENT AND CONSULTING CONTRACTS
  • A corporation against its former CEO in an AAA arbitration arising from a dispute over severance terms and non-compete obligations.
  • The CEO of a Fortune 100 financial services company in obtaining a seven-figure CPR arbitral award for breach of employment contract.
  • A business co-founder in arbitration against a fellow co-founder over a non-competition agreement in an AAA arbitration in Virginia.

MEDIA AND ENTERTAINMENT
  • A U.S. joint venture partner in the media industry against its Mexican joint venture partner in an ICC international arbitration in Mexico arising from a joint venture contract.

FASHION AND TEXTILES
  • An IT consulting firm in multi-million dollar dispute with fast-growing women’s clothing retailer over SAP implementation in an AAA arbitration in Boston.
  • An ICC arbitration arising from a dispute arising from a commercial agreement for high quality fabrics.
  • An AAA arbitration being administered under the expedited procedures of the Commercial Arbitration Rules regarding a dispute arising from a failure to pay for textiles supplied.

MASS ARBITRATION CLAIMS
  • Dozens of separate AAA arbitrations under California, Delaware and New York law against a major online retail company related to the alleged recording and storage of users’ voices by smart speaker technology for commercial benefit in violation of consumer privacy and other rights.
  • A series of related AAA consumer cases alleging that a mobility service provider violated California’s Unruh Civil Rights Act and the 1866 Civil Rights Act by implementing a policy whereby it charged customers differing fees depending on the race of the restaurant’s owner.

CANNABIS
  • Two founders of a closely held company formed to sell CBD-infused candies in a business divorce from a third founder before JAMS in Boston.
  • The seller of a cannabis cultivation business in a dispute before JAMS in Boston with the buyer.
  • A publicly traded U.S.-based cannabis retailer in a dispute with Cayman noteholders over the conversion price of convertible debt arbitrated before the ICDR in New York City.