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Specialist Guide to the

Global Leaders in Media Law Practice

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Foreign productions have bolstered the Czech audiovisual industry, with scheduled work in 2021 by foreign studios promising a pre-pandemic high of record-breaking spend.


“Foreign production interest was only temporarily held back last year, and we are once again seeing huge demand for filming in the Czech Republic. The audiovisual industry has an extraordinarily strong capacity to adapt and recover rapidly, so it is also the perfect tool to jumpstart employment and entrepreneurship in the post-Coronavirus period,” said Helena Bezdek Frankova, Director of the Czech Film Fund


Lawyers say the past year has included a number of mandates from the audiovisual market, with a focus on segments including TV, radio, social networks and traditional media. Areas of advice have included the sale of rights, licensing and copyright, as well as litigious matters.

Media lawyer Zdeněk Beránek, Peterka & Partners highlights wider business trends. Mr Beránek said: “Business-wise, there are several new trends. In the field of TV, attractive sporting events appear, almost exclusively, on pay-TV channels. There will be no Czech Premier League football matches broadcast on free-to-air channels. Football fans therefore need to opt either for a pay-per-view model or a subscription.”


He added: “Despite initial reluctance, this model seems to be finding its way and the number of subscribers is on the rise. Similar paid models are being implemented more and more.”

TIER 1

Baker McKenzie is appointed by international television and entertainment networks in multiple cases involving licensing, intellectual property and disputes. The firm works on IT and communications matters. The team assisted Fox Entertainment in a case involving regulatory matters.  Lawyers advise on various aspects of media law including defamation, unfair competition, publishing and distribution.  


Clients praise Bird & Bird for its “broad knowledge and practical approach in negotiations”. The practice works with world leading media companies including publishers, entertainment companies and motion picture studios. The firm’s historic focus on technology attracts clients from the digital media sphere looking to exploit rights, deal with data and privacy issues and develop platforms. Other areas of advice include content distribution, technology licensing, competition, regulation and tax-related matters.  


Vyskocil, Kroslak & Partners has multiple areas of specialisation across various media industry segments. Distinguished for its extensive coverage, the firm advises on film and music, copyright, advertising, libel, publicity and corporate defamation. Lawyers advise on regulatory issues in print, radio and television media, including representation before the Council for Radio and TV Broadcasting and other public bodies or courts.


The media division at Weinhold Legal incorporates IP and IT areas of practice. Clients include Havas Media, to which the firm provided advice on a 60 per cent share acquisition deal. The firm also acted for Grada Publishing on its launch of an e-commerce platform and advised a gaming company on intellectual property matter. Clients praise the firm for its “responsiveness, business understanding, technical expertise and reasonable fees”.


TIER 2

CMS’ Prague media practice drives the firm’s M&A activity in the CEE region. The firm’s TMT work involves advice on IT and internet start-ups, as well as liability arising from new commercial models.


Glatzova & Co. has a leading reputation for its copyright and IT emphasis. The team works with the wider team covering the entire spectrum of distribution and licensing with an emphasis on uniformity and universal application.


Havel & Partners is praised by clients for “professionalism and the quality of their legal counsel. Another client commented: “For us, HHP is truly one of our key partners and definitely the most important partner in the legal field.” The team advises on multiple cases involving broadcasting, advertising, online streaming and data protection. In highlighted work the team assisted Fox TV, Indian Paintbrush and Anthropoid Productions on drafting co-production agreements. In other work, lawyers advised Discovery Czech Republic on assessing advertisements in foreign languages aired in the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary.


Within the TMT sector PRK Partners is best known for its transactional services. The firm’s multidisciplinary lawyers advise on all aspects of media law and are routinely mandated by clients in Germany and Kazakhstan. Lawyers have extensive experience advising on corporate, regulatory and anti-trust matters. Other areas of focus include litigation and licensing.


TIER 3

Combining media and telecommunications, bpv Braun Partners focusses on market entry and exit, financing of start-ups and joint ventures. Lawyers also advise on press law, data protection and copyright. The firm also acts for media clients in cross-border expansions.


Copyright specialist Čermák a spol. is widely recognised by competitors as one of the country’s leading firm’s for media and copyright focus. The team also advises on commercial law, advertising regulation and unfair competition. Lawyers are noted for their litigation experience and advice on sector-related corporate transactions.   


Peterka & Partners’ sports, media and entertainment department handles cross-border cases involving television rights and sponsorship deals on behalf of leading national football clubs. The team also advises on defamation, media rights, regulation and domestic competition.


Randa Havel Legal is notably active in cases connected with data protection and online media. Lawyers advise on entertainment and television. Other areas of focus include advertising, e-commerce and copyright.


TIER 4

Kinstellar’s work with media clients includes advice on mergers and acquisitions, regulation and compliance, antitrust and tax. The team works closely with industry regulators and government bodies. Lawyers also acts for clients in complex, cross-practice intellectual property cases and related licensing and joint ventures.


Rowan Legal specialises in the protection of reputation and of author’s rights. Print publishers and operators of digital media form part of the firm’s client base as do television and radio broadcasters.The firm specialises in industry-related cases, representing clients before the courts and regulatory bodies.


Traplová Hakr Kubát specialises in copyright, unfair competition and licensing. The practice is widely recognised for its leadership and sector focus. The team is highlighted for its knowledge of media law and expertise in all aspects of copyright law.


Data protection and intellectual property are Vejmelka & Wünsch’s key areas of focus. The practice is known for its advice on the transfer of personal data abroad and its work on license agreements and other contractual matters regarding copyright.  


TIER 5

BBH has transactional, regulatory and litigation experience in the TMT sector that makes it a relevant practice for industry clients. The team advises on a broad range of aspects including, M&A transactions, protection of personal information and dispute resolution.


Pokorný, Wagner & Partners is recognised by peers for its work with clients from the advertising sector and its broader specialisation in unfair competition, copyright and data protection. The team also advises on commercial aspects of intellectual property, licensing, franchising and disputes.  


With expertise in traditional broadcast, White & Case is recognised for its work on content distribution via cable, satellite and terrestrial broadcasting. The firm’s cross-practice team advises on convergence between traditional distribution and internet-based services, cross-border acquisitions and spin-offs. Other areas of services include dispute resolution and advice on complex regulatory issues.

TIER 1

Baker McKenzie

Bird & Bird

Vyskocil, Kroslak & Partners

Weinhold Legal

 

TIER 2

CMS

Glatzova & Co.

Havel & Partners

PRK Partners

Rott, Ruzicka & Guttmann  


TIER 3

bpv Braun Partners  

Čermák a spol.

Kocián Solc Balastík

Peterka & Partners

Randa Havel Legal

Štaidl Lesta


TIER 4

Kinstellar   

Nielsen Meinl

Pierstone

Rowan Legal   

Traplová Hakr Kubát                   

Vejmelka & Wünsch


TIER 5

Allen & Overy

BBH Legal Services

DLA Piper  

Petra Dolejsova

Pokorný, Wagner & Partners

White & Case


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