Melanie Willems
experiencerAndrews Kurth Kenyon
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Andrews Kurth Kenyon (UK) LLP
16 Old Bailey
London EC4M 7EG, UK
P: +44.20.3053.8223
F: +44.20.3053.8299

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Melanie Willems

Partner

London Office
Andrews Kurth Kenyon (UK) LLP
16 Old Bailey
London EC4M 7EG,
P: +44.20.3053.8223
F: +44.20.3053.8299

Melanie is Managing Partner of the London office and Head of International Arbitration for Andrews Kurth. She focuses her practice on international arbitration and is experienced in all forms of alternative dispute resolution (expert determination, mediation, adjudication and so forth). She has extensive experience in ad hoc proceedings and the major international rules, such as ICC, LCIA, UNCITRAL, ICSID and standard form contract rules. She also represents clients in court in the UK, and sits as an arbitrator.

Melanie acts for clients in a wide range of industries, including engineering, energy, construction, rail, infrastructure/transport, hotels, retail, property development, banking and finance, technology and insurance. She has particular experience in contractual disputes arising from energy, major projects and engineering matters. She has advised clients on international projects in the Middle East, Asia, India and Africa in relation to foreign investments, power plants, renewable energy, desalination plants, petrochemical plants, oil rigs, pipelines, hotels, roads/highways, hospitals, transport and government projects to name a few.

Representative Experience

  • Represented a major Japanese contractor in an ICC arbitration arising out of the construction of a petrochemicals plant in Northern England. The case involved claims for the cost of additional works, delay claims (including prolongation) and disruption claims.
  • Successfully represented a large European contractor against a Kuwaiti government body in a Paris-based UNCITRAL arbitration concerning a project in Algiers. The work included defending challenges to arbitrators and an appeal to the International Court at The Hague.
  • Acting for an international hotel operator in ICC arbitration proceedings concerning a luxury hotel in Madagascar, as regards compliance with brand standards and health and safety requirements.
  • Advised a Japanese contractor in a multi-party mediation arising out of claims regarding a Saudi Arabian power project. The matter was successfully settled.
  • Advised on an issue of stress-cracking on the blades of a wind turbine in a wind farm in Portugal.
  • Advised on design and workmanship claims due to a damaged pipeline network, including an underwater section and associated cabling.
  • Advising an international hotel operator in a dispute concerning unlawful termination of a management agreement for a new-build hotel in Moscow serving an international airport in Moscow, subject to ICC arbitration.
  • Conducted a large scale mediation in connection with liability for faults in a new design single point mooring buoy.
  • Advised the world's largest rail manufacturer in connection with a long-term contract for upgrade and improvement works on rail infrastructure and facilities in a major European capital. Interim claims were valued at £40 million.
  • Conducted an expert determination, concerning rights to hydrocarbons, on the consideration adjustment necessary in a purchase of North Sea interests.
  • Acted for an English/Lebanese joint venture on an ICC arbitration relating to the construction of an Egyptian “new town.”
  • Acting in an ICC arbitration concerning the termination of a luxury resort hotel subject to a long-term management agreement, for one of the largest international hotel operators.
  • Advised client on contentious issues in PFI contracts, in connection with the mechanism for measuring performance and the impact of remuneration due to the contractor.
  • Acted on several large scale adjudications in connection with disputes in relation to the construction of the M6 motorway.
  • Represented an international hotel chain in an ICC arbitration concerning health and safety issues and the duties of the property owner under the hotel management agreement in connection with a substantial African hotel.

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