Tell us a bit about yourself ...
I specialise in negotiating and drafting international commercial contracts, litigation and advice in insolvency cases, legal support for logistics and supply management, as well as debt recovery, seizure, and enforcement of contracts and judgements.
A born orator
I quickly worked out that I was very good at advocacy, and straight after leaving university I signed up for a moot court competition in Antwerp. I ended up winning that competition, and decided to enter the Low Countries Moot Court Competition. I was lucky enough to win that competition as well. It was as if someone was trying to tell me: you must and you shall become a litigator!
A good lawyer
... is all things to all people: ruthless when necessary, persuasive in court, a problem-solver in negotiations, a mediator for settlements, a ghost-writer for his client, with a sharp pen for written arguments and an unambiguous turn of phrase when drafting contracts and, last but not least, a networker. Here at Astrea, not only do we have an extensive in-house pool of specialists who continually help each other out, but we can also draw on an enormous international network of external experts.
My greatest asset
Curiosity. Clients are often amazed at how well I understand their business. But I'm very happy to do it. I don't want to sit in my ivory tower, I want to continually immerse myself in new subjects; and I do that by finding out as much as possible, so that I can understand a company and its business through and through. That's the only way I can use my expert legal skills to create practical, appropriate commercial solutions – which is always our ultimate goal.
I persuade on substance. In a diplomatic way if possible, or by applying pressure when necessary. I listen to the needs of my clients, then translate them into solutions which are in the clients' best interests. I apply not only my knowledge, but also put my heart and soul in it.