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Richard Greenberg

Richard Greenberg joined 20 Essex Street in September 2014 upon completion of pupillage. He specialises in commercial law, including arbitration, shipping and commodities, energy and natural resources, insolvency and company law, banking and finance and private international law.

Richard has experience of being led in complex, high-value litigation and arbitration, but also regularly appears as sole counsel in the High Court and County Court. In 2015, he was seconded to the litigation department of a major city firm for three months and worked in-house with a Norwegian Defence Club for six weeks.

His recent cases include:

  • Marex Financial Limited v Carlos Sevilleja Garcia [2017] EWHC 918 (Comm): acting for the Defendant foreign exchange trader in an application challenging the Court’s jurisdiction (led by David Lewis QC).
  • SIAC Arbitration 2016: acting (as sole counsel) for the buyers in a three day commodities arbitration in Singapore arising out of a ban on the import of steel by the Indonesian government.
  • Magellan Spirit ApS v Vitol SA [2016] EWHC 454 (Comm): acting for the owners of an LNG vessel in an application for an anti-suit injunction in respect of a US$15m cargo claim brought in Nigeria (led by Timothy Hill QC).
  • LMAA Arbitration 2015: acting for the charterers of a vessel in a US$60m arbitration dispute with the owners concerning whether the vessel that was tendered for delivery was properly the subject matter of the charterparty and whether charterers were entitled to terminate the charterparty (led by Michael Ashcroft QC and Rupert Hamilton).

Specialisations: 

Commercial and Private International Law

Richard undertakes a broad range of commercial work. Recent instructions include:

  • Acting for a Kazakh company in a US$18m claim for fraudulent misrepresentation in relation to the acquisition of shares in a leading commercial bank in Uzbekistan (with Blair Leahy).
  • Acting for a conch farm in a US$200m+ arbitration dispute with a Caribbean state for breach of a development agreement and various property claims.
  • Advising a large international producer of chemicals in relation to its potential liabilities under a long-term manufacturing and supply agreement (with Nakul Dewan).
  • Acting for the defendant director of a management consultancy firm in a claim by two former shareholders to rescind trust deeds on the grounds of misrepresentation and undue influence.
  • Acting (as sole counsel) for insurance brokers in a dispute concerning the existence and terms of an oral agreement to defer payment of insurance premiums.
  • Advising an asbestos removal company in a dispute with a former director concerning breaches of multiple share purchase agreements.

 

Many of the disputes on which Richard has worked have involved jurisdictional and choice of law issues. Recent examples include:

  • Magellan Spirit ApS v Vitol SA [2016] EWHC 454 (Comm): acting for the owners of a LNG vessel in an application for an anti-suit injunction in respect of a US$15m cargo claim brought in Nigeria (led by Timothy Hill QC)
  • Marex Financial Limited v Carlos Sevilleja Garcia [2017] EWHC 918 (Comm): acting for the Defendant foreign exchange trader in an application challenging the Court’s jurisdiction (led by David Lewis QC).
  • Acting for the owners of a vessel in a claim arising out of damage to property at a port in the United Kingdom, which involved an application for service out of the jurisdiction.
  • Assisting (during pupillage) Thomas Raphael QC on Actavis UK Ltd v Eli Lilly and Co [2014] EWHC 1511 (Pat), a case in which Actavis obtained declarations of non-infringement in respect of the UK, French, Italian and Spanish designations of a European patent relating to the use of an anti-cancer drug.
  • Assisting (during pupillage) Alexander Layton QC and Malcolm Jarvis on Lehman Brothers Finance AG v Klaus Tschira Stiftung GmbH [2014] EWHC 2782 (Ch), a case concerning Article 27 of the Lugano Convention 2007: whether the initiation of conciliation proceedings by the lodging of a written request for conciliation constitutes “proceedings” before a “court” within the meaning of Articles 27 and 30 of the Lugano Convention.
Insolvency and Company Law

Richard’s practice covers the full spectrum of contentious insolvency disputes and company law. Recent examples of work:

  • Acting (as sole counsel) for a Seychelles company defending a petition by the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills to wind up the company on public interest grounds.
  • Marex Financial Limited v Carlos Sevilleja Garcia [2017] EWHC 918 (Comm): acting for the Defendant foreign exchange trader in an application challenging the Court’s jurisdiction, which involved (amongst other things) the question of whether England is the proper place to hear the claim in circumstances where there is a related liquidation in the BVI (led by David Lewis QC).
  • Assisting Stephen Atherton QC in Re Business Environment Fleet Street Limited (in Administration) [2014] EWHC 3540 (Ch), a case in which the Court refused to grant leave to the joint administrators of the company to sell assets located at premises owned by the company under paragraph 72 or, alternatively, paragraphs 67 and 68 of the Insolvency Act 1986.
  • Acting for the joint administrators of several property development companies in applications to extend their terms of office.
  • Acting for creditors and debtors in winding-up bankruptcy petitions.
  • Acting for the defendants in a claim for possession and sale of a residential property pursuant to an equitable charge.
  • Acting for the defendant director of a management consultancy firm in a claim by two former shareholders to rescind trust deeds on the grounds of misrepresentation and undue influence.
  • Acting for the claimants in a group litigation claim concerned with breach of fiduciary duties by the directors of an international timeshare exchange company.
Banking and Finance

Richard has experience in a wide variety of banking and finance disputes. Recent examples of work:

  • Acting (as sole counsel) for a foreign exchange broker in a dispute concerning the proper construction of a set-off clause and alleged misrepresentations in risk warning notices.
  • Assisting a major city law firm in relation to the FCA review of the misselling of interest rate hedging products.
  • Assisting (during pupillage) Thomas Raphael QC on the RBS Rights Issue Litigation (Greenwood v Goodwin and others): the on-going claim in respect of RBS’s £12bn rights issue of April 2008.
Arbitration

Richard is regularly instructed in arbitral proceedings in shipping, commodities and general commercial cases. He has experience of proceedings under a variety of institutional rules, including LMAA, LCIA, GAFTA and SIAC. Recent examples of work:

  • LMAA Arbitration 2017: acting for the charterers of a vessel in a dispute concerning Owners’ breach of an oil major eligibility clause (led by Christopher Hancock QC).
  • SIAC Arbitration 2016: acting (as sole counsel) for the buyers in a three day commodities arbitration in Singapore arising out of a ban on the import of steel by the Indonesian government.
  • LMAA Arbitration 2015: acting for the charterers of a vessel in a US$60m arbitration dispute with the owners concerning whether the vessel that was tendered for delivery was properly the subject matter of the charterparty and whether charterers were entitled to terminate the charterparty (with Michael Ashcroft QC and Rupert Hamilton).
  • Acting for a conch farm in a US$200m+ arbitration dispute with a Caribbean state for breach of a development agreement and various property claims.
  • Acting for the owners in an LMAA arbitration claim against time charterers for early redelivery.
  • Acting for buyers and sellers in numerous Gafta commodities arbitrations.

 

Shipping

Richard has advised, drafted pleadings and appeared in court and before arbitral tribunals in a number of shipping disputes, including claims in respect of:

  • off hire
  • demurrage
  • charterparty construction
  • bills of lading
  • seaworthiness
  • cargo damage
  • underperformance
  • deviation
  • detention
  • safe ports/berths
  • arrest
  • redelivery
  • shipbuilding

 

Recent examples of work:

  • LMAA Arbitration 2017: acting for the charterers of a vessel in a dispute concerning Owners’ breach of an oil major eligibility clause (led by Christopher Hancock QC).
  • Magellan Spirit ApS v Vitol SA [2016] EWHC 454 (Comm): acting for the owners of a LNG vessel in an application for an anti-suit injunction in respect of a US$15m cargo claim brought in Nigeria (led by Timothy Hill QC)
  • LMAA Arbitration 2015: acting for the charterers of a vessel in a US$60m arbitration dispute with the owners concerning whether the vessel that was tendered for delivery was properly the subject matter of the charterparty and whether charterers were entitled to terminate the charterparty (led by Michael Ashcroft QC and Rupert Hamilton).
  • Assisting Michael Ashcroft QC in a case arising out of the seizure of a vessel and the sale of her cargo by a West African government.
  • Acting (as sole counsel) for the carrier defendants in a claim arising out of the theft of cargo at a port, which raised issues concerning the carrier's obligations under a storage contract, bills of lading and in bailment.
  • Advising owners on whether a claim by receivers for demurrage paid to a third party under a sale contract is recoverable. 
  • Acting for the owners in an LMAA arbitration claim against time charterers for early redelivery.
  • Acting for a port authority in a claim against owners for damage to one of the port’s dolphins.
  • Acting for the disponent owners in a claim against voyage charterers for wrongful detention of the vessel.
  • Assisting (during pupillage) Henry Byam-Cook on Caresse Navigation Ltd v Office National de L’Electricite (The Channel Ranger) [2014] 1 Lloyd’s Rep. 337, a case concerning the incorporation of a jurisdiction clause into a charterparty.

In May-June 2015 Richard spent six weeks working in-house with a Norwegian Defence Club. He advised on claims arising under charterparties and bills of lading and drafted a number of submissions for various London arbitrations.

Commodities

Richard is regularly instructed in cases concerning the international sale of goods. Recent examples of work:

  • SIAC Arbitration 2016: acting (as sole counsel) for the buyers in a 3-day commodities arbitration in Singapore arising out of a ban on the import of steel by the Indonesian government.
  • Arbitration concerning a failure to ship a cargo of Russian chickpeas under Gafta contract No. 88.
  • Arbitration concerning the proper construction of the “Appropriation” clause in Gafta contract No. 48.
  • Arbitration concerning the proper construction of the “Nomination of Vessel” clause in Gafta contract No. 49.
  • Advice concerning the conformity of documents under a letter of credit.
  • Arbitration concerning the construction of a clause pursuant to which a third party had been nominated to make payment to the sellers under a CIF contract.
  • Arbitration concerning the construction of the buyer's payment obligations under a CFR contract for the sale of rice.
  • Advice concerning short shipment under a CFR contract for the sale of wheat.
  • Assisting (during pupillage) Malcolm Jarvis on Soufflet Negoce SA v Fedcominvest Europe SARL [2014] EWHC 2405 (Comm), a case concerning the proper construction of a “Notices” clause in GAFTA contract No. 64.

Education and Career: 

Education

Pembroke College, Cambridge: BA (Hons) Double First (2009)

Christ Church, Oxford: MSt, Distinction (2010)

City University: GDL, Commendation (2012)

BPP: BPTC, Outstanding (2013)

 

Selected Prizes and Scholarships

Lord Mansfield Scholarship, Lincoln’s Inn (2012)

Lord Haldane Scholarship, Lincoln’s Inn (2011)

Collins Prize for English, Pembroke College (2009)

Foundation Scholarship, Pembroke College (2007-09)

Publications: 

Re Business Environment Fleet Street Ltd (In Administration) - "The application of paragraph 72 of Schedule B1 to the Insolvency Act 1986: the importance of having possession… of the facts, the evidence and the relevant property", The Company Lawyer: 2015, 36(6), 184-188 (co-author with Stephen Atherton QC).

20 Essex Street Bulletin – “Asset-stripping of Judgment Debtors, Freezing Injunctions, the Limits of Tortious Liability and Reflective Loss”.

Appointments and Society Memberships: 

  • COMBAR
  • The London Common Law and Commercial Bar Association
  • Young Fraud Lawyers Association (YFLA)
  • Insolvency Lawyers Association (ILA)