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International Energy Disputes Partner David Hesse Joins Hunton Andrews Kurth in London


David Hesse, an energy disputes attorney whose practice focuses on oil and gas litigation and arbitration matters with a strong emphasis on Africa has joined Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP as a partner in London.

Hesse advises states and national oil and gas companies on disputes, settlements, and upstream activities, as well as international tenders, refinery projects, farm-out agreements, and other contracts in the petroleum and petrochemical industries. His practice includes international commercial arbitration matters involving Anglophone and Francophone states and state entities in North, East, Central and West Africa.

Previously a partner with Clyde & Co., Hesse joins longtime colleague and collaborator Philip Mace as the newest additions to Hunton Andrews Kurth’s London-based energy team. Mace, who also recently joined the firm as a partner from Clyde & Co., is an experienced corporate lawyer whose practice is focused on energy and upstream oil and gas transactions.

“Robust global demand for large scale energy and infrastructure projects and the natural proliferation of disputes associated with those ventures continue to drive the need for a strong international arbitration and litigation practice,” said Tom Taylor, co-head of Hunton Andrews Kurth’s litigation team. “David is an outstanding lawyer whose experience and ability to navigate complex international disputes make him an ideal complement to the team.”

Hesse has extensive experience before international institutions including the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). A selection of his notable representations prior to joining the firm include:

  • Advised the Government of Tanzania and the Tanzanian Electric Supply Company Limited (TANESCO) as co-lead international counsel with a local firm, in connection with related contract and treaty claims (ICSID) by Standard Chartered Bank.
  • Advised the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and supporting Nigerian counsel in connection with over $1 billion in claims by China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) and South Atlantic Petroleum (SAPETRO) under a production sharing contract.
  • Advised the Government of Algeria and Sonatrach in connection with parallel proceedings (ICSID and UNCITRAL) by an oil and gas exploration company and an international shipping and logistics company for claims in excess of $8 billion relating to Algeria’s Windfall Profit Tax.
  • Advised the Government of Uganda and the Uganda Revenue Authority in connection with a $405 million claim by Heritage Oil (UNCITRAL) and a $473 million claim by Tullow Oil plc (ICSID) for recovery of capital gains tax under a production sharing agreement.
  • Advised ZCCM Investment Holdings PLC in connection with $2 billion in claims by Vedanta Resources Holdings Limited (UNCITRAL) relating to Konkola Copper Mines plc in Zambia.

“David’s practice complements our London-based projects and corporate offerings and reinforces our internationally recognized strength in the energy sector,” said Ferdinand Calice, managing partner of Hunton Andrews Kurth’s London office. “We are excited to welcome David to the firm.”

A recognized lawyer in Chambers Global and Legal 500, Hesse is also an Honorary Lecturer at the Centre for Energy, Petroleum and Mineral Law and Policy at the University of Dundee and a lecturer at the CWC School for Energy. He is a regular speaker at international arbitration and energy conferences, including Juris Conference, GAR Energy Disputes, and GAR Live.

Hesse received his undergraduate degree from the University of Cincinnati, his LLB (Maîtres) from the Universitie de Paris – La Sorbonne, and his LLM from Columbia Law School.

Hunton Andrews Kurth’s international arbitration and transnational litigation practice represents clients around the globe. We regularly handle investor-state arbitrations before the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), and commercial arbitrations before the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC); the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA); the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC); the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague; and the American Arbitration Association (AAA) and its international division, the International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR). We also work with clients in multi-jurisdictional matters, working closely with counsel in local forums.

About Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP

With over 900 lawyers in the United States, Asia, Europe and the Middle East, Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP is a global firm that serves clients across a broad range of complex transactional, litigation and regulatory matters. The firm is known for its strength in the energy, financial services, real estate, and retail and consumer products industries, as well as its considerable experience in more than 100 distinct areas of practice, including privacy and cybersecurity, intellectual property, environmental, and mergers and acquisitions.


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