Ilona Zekely is a Partner and Head of the European Desk at Egorov Puginsky Afanasiev & Partners and focuses on advising international companies in their activities across the CIS as well as CIS-based blue chips in their activities in Europe. She practices in the areas of corporate and M&A, Banking & Finance, commercial, energy, oil & gas and real estate law.
Ilona has more than 25 years of legal experience in Europe and the CIS. Since joining the Firm in 2010, she has advised a number of major international banks and financial institutions, insurance companies, energy and high technology and other multinational clients. She is particularly involved in renewable energy projects, including advice on the construction of the first–ever solar energy project with a capacity of 260 MW in Ukraine, and acted as the exclusive advisor on the entire hospitality setup of the EURO 2012 Championship in Ukraine.
Prior to joining the Firm, Ilona was the Managing Partner of an international law firm in Ukraine. She supported a wide range of cross-border transactions for various multinational and financial institutions in investment structuring, M&A and corporate law issues, real estate and land projects, insurance and oil & gas matters. She is highly recognized by Chambers, The Legal 500, IFLR1000 and other legal guides for her work. Ilona is being endorsed as one of Ukraine's top lawyers by Best Lawyers since 2009. In 2014 she has been acknowledged by Best Lawyers as the “Lawyer of the Year” for Land Use and Zoning. In 2015 Ilona has been named the Best Lawyers' 2016 Kyiv Investment "Lawyer of the Year".
Prior to coming to the CIS in 2007, she worked for Baker & McKenzie and other prominent law firms in Vienna. Ilona is an author of several publications on numerous Ukrainian, Austrian and European legal issues. She obtained her Master of law degree from Law Faculty at the University of Vienna. Ilona is Council member for Russia at the IBA European Regional Forum (ERF), and member of the Advisory Board of the IBA ERF Mental Wellbeing Working Party.