Sophie is Senior Associate with BGI Legal. She joined the firm in 2008 working as a Paralegal. Her main practice areas include project finance, secured transactions, real estate, property and land, share transfers and acquisitions, M&A, employment, corporate registrations and incorporation, legal due diligence, as well as general business law, corporate and commercial law. In addition to offering legal advice, Sophie is authorized to conduct registrations related to companies and immovable property through certified access to LEPL National Agency of Public Registry under the Ministry of Justice of Georgia.
A brief selection of her most recent key engagements includes the following:
- Advised an IFI on Georgian law aspects of the transaction involving financing of the development and construction of mid-range hotel in Tbilisi to be managed by Hilton under the Hilton Garden Inn brand (value of the project - USD 31,000,000);
- Advised IFI on financing of the energy efficient, affordable housing project to be completed by the leading local developer (USD 23,000,000);
- Represented IFIs and major foreign banks in a number of project finance deals;
- Advised a global food & beverage giant in one of the largest multi-jurisdictional M&A deals in Georgia ’s recent history;
- Advised a foreign investor in connection with USD 5,000,000 transaction involving acquisition of landmark building;
- Advised a local development company in connection with issuing bonds;
- Represented a major Israeli based investment company in connection with acquisition of local business, structuring of the transaction, merger, acquisition of real estate and execution of a joint venture agreement with local partners;
- Advised a major Israeli based distribution company in connection with various corporate matters;
- Advised a large foreign real estate development company in relation to various legal issues, including loans and security instruments, employment and real estate transactions;
- Advised one of the largest international charity organizations in connection with its operations in Georgia;
- Advised a major Dutch based investment company on various legal matters;
- Advised a large Dutch based real estate development company in relation to real estate transactions in Georgia;
- Advised a large international oil company on various legislative and regulatory issues (including environmental regulations);
- Advised one of the largest international Jewish charities regarding its operations in Georgia;
- Assisted the Embassies of United Kingdom, Israel and the Netherlands in various land and real estate-related transactions;
- Advised a number of foreign based companies on various legal matters, including acquisition of real estate in Georgia, establishment of subsidiaries and branches, share transfers and acquisitions and employment;
- Participated in HPP Projects;
- Advised a major US based religious organization on various legal issues, including immigration law and real estate transactions;
- Advised a major US based non-commercial corporation on numerous legal issues, including corporate matters and employment;
- Advised an aircraft owner in connection with security instrument for aircraft lease.
- Acted as legal counsel to Paddy Power Betfair PLC on the acquisition of a majority stake in Adjarabet, the largest online gaming business in Georgia, in a transaction valued at EUR 116 million;
- Conducted the due diligence of a major insurance company in Georgia for the purposes of IPO listing on London Stock Exchange;
- Conducted the due diligence of a major telecommunications company in Georgia for the purposes of implementation of the company and shareholder restructuring;
- Conducted the due diligence of a major Georgian company for the purposes of refinancing bonds;
- Conducted the due diligence of a major mobile company in Georgia;
- Advised a number of foreign companies and individuals on immigration regulations, including visa/residence permit rules and procedures;
- Advised a major US based news gathering agency on various corporate matters;
- Advised one of the largest international technology companies regarding corporate matters.
Sophie obtained her first degree in Law from Tbilisi State University in 2010.
In addition to her native Georgian, Sophie speaks fluent English and Russian.
Zaza Bibilashvili is a well-known and highly regarded figure in the Georgian legal market. One of the founding partners of the firm, he oversees projects and is a key contact for clients. Lasha Gogiberidze has been called "one of the leading lawyers in Georgia" and "a central person not just in capital markets, but in the legal market in general." Considered an expert in capital markets and project finance work, particularly in the energy sphere, he is highly respected by his peers, who say: "He`s among the top lawyers who shaped the legal market."
BGI Legal is ‘exceptional' in M&A, financing and real estate, and is especially prominent in the energy sector. Lasha Gogiberidze, whom clients regard as ‘the top lawyer in Georgia for banking, finance and capital markets transactions', and Sandro Bibilashvili handled a number of innovative regional energy projects and joint ventures, such as the Adjaristsqali hydropower project.