14th Aptíssimi Awards Recognise Excellence in Business Law
The Esade Alumni Law Club’s Aptíssimi Awards – whose name derives from the Latin for “the fittest” – recognise the year’s most outstanding careers and achievements in the field of business law. The winners of the 14th Aptíssimi Awards were Luis de Carlos Bertrán, Partner and Chairman of Uría Menéndez; the National Commission on Markets and Competition (CNMC); Acciona; the MASMOVIL Group; and Xavier Pujol, Partner, Secretary General and Global General Counsel at Alantra.
The Aptíssimi Awards have been a benchmark in the Spanish business law sector for 14 years. They were created to recognise individual and institutional ethics and hard work in accordance with Esade Alumni’s values: integrity, sensitivity, diversity, contributing the common good, and building a fairer and more sustainable society. The Aptíssimi Awards showcase law firms and lawyers who are an inspiration to the community by recognising outstanding achievements in four categories: outstanding career, contribution to the sector and society, corporate counsel, and professional development of an Esade alumnus in the world of law.
The Aptíssimi Awards ceremony, which this year took place at the Royal Tapestry Factory in Madrid, has become the highest-profile annual event for the alumni legal community. This year’s ceremony brought together nearly 300 representatives of top law firms and in-house corporate legal teams, as well as members of government bodies related to the world of law, government lawyers, registrars and other high-profile professionals from the legal world.
The panel of judges, comprising representatives of major law firms, companies and collaborating institutions of Esade, selected Luis de Carlos Bertrán, Partner and Chairman of Uría Menéndez, in the category of outstanding career. He was chosen for his extensive and consequential career as an outstanding jurist dedicated to business law, especially in the fields of securities market law, business law and corporate governance, mergers and acquisitions, and banking law. He is also notable for his success at the helm of one of the most renowned Spanish law firms, his teaching activity and his all-around prestige in the sector.
The Esade Alumni Law Club also recognised the contributions of professionals and institutions that have helped to develop corporate law in the business sector. The award for best contribution to the sector and society went to the National Commission on Markets and Competition (CNMC) for its role as a key player in the Spanish economy, both for its institutional importance and for its influence on business law, as well as for its regulatory and sanctioning functions, all in the service of its mission of promoting and preserving the proper functioning of markets and equal opportunities through the existence of effective competition, in the interest of both consumers and companies.
The Esade Alumni Law Club recognised the contributions of professionals and institutions that have helped to develop corporate law in the business sector
The Aptíssimi Awards also recognised this year’s top teams in the category of corporate counsel: Acciona and the MASMOVIL Group. The judges praised Acciona for its “multi-jurisdictional nature, teamwork, the engagement of the members of the corporate counsel team and its involvement as a strategic partner of the company, as well as its internal leadership in resolving legal challenges, its commitment to diversity, the measures it has taken to attract and retain young talent, and the continuous and transversal training of its professionals”. The judges praised the MASMOVIL Group for “the comprehensive and transversal training of its legal professionals, as well as its ability to adapt to new issues and regulatory developments”. They also highlighted the company’s internal leadership in legal defence, advice and resolution of legal challenges, as well as the promotion of diversity, remote work and training for professionals.
Finally, the Insignis Alumni award, which recognises outstanding achievements by alumni of Esade Law School in the legal, academic, cultural, business or social fields, went to Xavier Pujol, Partner, Secretary General and Global General Counsel at Alantra. The judges praised Pujol for his “brilliant career practising law at top national and international law firms and holding positions of responsibility in corporate legal teams at major companies”.
The ceremony also featured a tribute to Jorge Badía (1962-2022), former CEO of Cuatrecasas, for his involvement on the panel of judges for the outstanding career award. Rafael Fontana, president of Cuatrecasas and member of the jury for the Professional Career Award, who received the award.
The Aptíssimi Awards ceremony was followed by a dinner. Year after year, this event has consolidated its position as the best opportunity for professionals in the legal sector to share experiences and create new opportunities for the benefit of society as a whole.