André, a Certified Specialist for Employment Law (Fachanwalt für Arbeitsrecht), heads Orrick’s German Employment Practice. He advises German and international companies in all areas of individual and collective employment law. With around ten years of international experience, André is well-versed in employment aspects of M&A transactions, restructuring and employment related litigation.

The main focus of André's practice include employment aspects of M&A transactions, restructuring, outsourcing and headcount reduction, multi-jurisdictional and cross-border employment issues, service agreements of managing directors and board members, co-determination of employees at operation and board level, collective bargaining and negotiations with works councils and trade unions and litigation.

André is an acknowledged specialist in employing third-party personnel, especially through temporary agency work. Moreover, he is very experienced in aspects of employment compliance, internal investigations and employee data protection.

André's engagements include the following projects and transactions (advice partly before joining Orrick):

  • Quip AG - Acquisition of Kolumbus Personal Management GmbH, a high-growth German temporary employment agency
  • Founders and shareholders of Markenloft GmbH - Sale of Markenloft GmbH to Dentsu Aegis Network
  • TCV - Investment in SuperVista, one of Germany’s largest VC financings of 2016
  • Crelux GmbH - Sale of Crelux GmbH to WuXi AppTec
  • Imagine Easy - Sale of Imagine Easy Solutions to Chegg, Inc.
  • Aesculap AG - Investment in Neuroloop GmbH, one of the largest university spin-offs in Germany
  • Fagerhult - Acquisition of LED Linear GmbH
  • World Triathlon Corporation (Ironman) - Acquisition of Lagardère Sports' endurance division
  • Wickeder Westfalen-Stahl - Sale of the Cold Strip Division
  • Koenig & Bauer AG - Major intra-group restructuring including several spin-offs in order to implement a holding structure
  • EQT - Acquisition of E.I.S. aircraft group, a high-growth aviation solutions provider
  • VR Equitypartner - Acquisition of LEUNA-Tenside GmbH, a market leading German chemical producer
  • Nasdaq-listed global leading provider of printing technology - Restructuring of Germany business by way of spin-off
  • One of Europe's biggest hospital groups - Representation in more than 100 equal pay claims under the German Act on Temporary Agency Work before local and regional labour courts
  • Link Market Services - Acquisition of Deutsche Bank subsidiary registrar services GmbH
  • PATRIZIA Alternative Investments - Acquisition of Bayern LB subsidiary GBW Group for 2,45 bn Euro (one of the biggest real estate deals in 2013 in Germany)
  • AXA LM - Acquisition of international subsidiaries of German run-off company GLOBAL Reinsurance (GLOBAL Re) (formerly Gerling Rückversicherung)
  • Leading global technology company - Acquisition of a company following insolvency including post-acquisition redundancy scenario and representation before court
  • Leading global supplier of medical technology - Advice on restructuring of German subisdiaries
  • Avnet - Acquistion of MSC/Gleichmann Group
  • Finanz Informatik - IT service provider of the German Savings Banks Finance Group (Sparkassen-Finanzgruppe) – Outsourcing IT from leading German Landesbank Baden-Württemberg
  • Tokai Rubber - Acquisition of Anvis Group, a leading national automotive company
  • Leading global technology company - Contribution of Germany business into joint venture with leading global electronic company by way of spin-off
  • Leading global payment services company - Intra-group reorganisation including redundancy scenario in German subsidiary
  • Omega Pharma - Acquisition of pharmaceutical portfolio from GlaxoSmithKline
  • International trading corporation - Implementation of a firmwide code of conduct in Germany including data privacy requirements of whistleblower schemes
  • Commerzbank AG - Advice on employment law aspects of merger with Dresdner Bank AG
  • Leading national IT service provider for banks - Advice on post merger reorganisation
  • Advent International - Advice on intended acquisition of Evonik black carbon business in a bidding process
  • Leading German bank - Advice on challenging first-time works council election
  • Leading global technology company - Merger of German subsidiaries and post-merger redundancy scenario including ca 100 unfair dismissal claims before local and regional labour courts
  • Leading global technology company - Internal fraud investigation including representation in numerous unfair dismissal claims before court up to the Federal Labour Court
  • Various international companies and banks - Review and implementation of employee incentive plans in Germany
  • Leading national asset manager - Advice on outsourcing of property management
  • Private investment funds - Advice on acquisition of leading German automotive company in a bidding process
  • Various private equity firms - Advice on employment and service agreements of executive employees and managing directors

Posts by: André Zimmermann

Germany’s Financial Regulator Implements New Electronic System Guaranteeing Whistleblowers Absolute Anonymity and Non-traceability

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As we reported last summer, Germany’s Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) set up a centralized platform for receiving whistleblower complaints of alleged violations of supervisory provisions within the financial sector.

Beginning this year, the BaFin implemented a new electronic system, allowing whistleblowers to submit their reports. The system guarantees the informants absolute anonymity, while on the other hand enabling the BaFin to make contact regarding possible inquiries. Thereby, although taking place on anonymous basis, the newly installed communication channel is expected to give BaFin the opportunity to verify the truth value of the submitted information by posing further questions, e.g. regarding the background of the complaint. READ MORE

New Restrictions for Temporary Agency Work in Germany in 2017

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On October 21, 2016, the German Parliament adopted the draft law regarding the reform of the German Act on Temporary Agency Work (Arbeitnehmerüberlassungsgesetz – AÜG). The reform will come into force as planned on April 1, 2017 and will bring material changes for both, agencies and their customers, the host businesses.

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Germany: Legislative Change Requires Amendments to Standard Employment Contracts

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A legislative change that entered into force on October 1, 2016, affects multinationals with employees working in Germany. In order to comply with these recent changes, companies doing business in Germany should now double-check and, where necessary, adjust their standard employment contracts.

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ECJ: No Discrimination Claims for Mock Applicants in Europe

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Just in time for the 10th anniversary of the German General Equal Treatment Act (Allgemeines Gleichbehandlungsgesetz – AGG) the European Court of Justice (ECJ) has clarified that European anti-discrimination law does not protect mock applicants, i.e. applicants who are not interested in being hired, but solely apply in order to bring claims on the grounds of discrimination. The judgment will make it easier for companies in Europe to reject such discrimination claims in the future.

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Germany’s Financial Regulator Establishes New Whistleblower Platform

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Last week, Germany’s Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) unveiled a centralized platform for receiving whistleblower complaints, including anonymous complaints, of alleged violations of supervisory provisions within the financial sector.  The move appears to represent a shift in German ideology toward a more favorable view of anonymous reporting, which for many years was discouraged in Germany and more broadly in the EU due to the risk of “organized systems of denouncement.”  Under the new program, whistleblowers may submit reports in writing (on paper or electronically), by phone (with or without recording the conversation), or verbally.  BaFin’s press release announcing the program states that it will make the anonymity of whistleblowers a “top priority,” and that it will not pass on the identity of whistleblowers to third parties.  The program is “aimed at person with a special knowledge of a company’s internal affairs – for example because they are employed there or have some other contractual relationship or relationship of trust with the company.”

BaFin was required to implement this new platform due to an amendment to the German Act on Financial Services Supervision.  Notably, the Act only applies to the financial services sector, not including external accountants, tax consultants and attorneys. It provides that employees working in the financial services sector may not be held liable for reporting potential or actual breaches of law under either employment law or criminal law, unless the report was false or grossly negligent.

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Using Temp Agencies in Germany: New Restrictions for Companies

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On June 1, 2016, the draft law regarding the reform of the German Act on the Supply of Temporary Employees (Arbeitnehmerüberlassungsgesetz – AÜG) has been adopted by the Federal Cabinet. The German Bundestag will address the draft law after the summer break. However, material changes to the draft are not expected to be made during the parliamentary process. If the time schedule will be observed, the reform will come into force as planned on January 1, 2017.

The new law will bring material changes for both, employment agencies and their customers, the host businesses.

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“Temporary Employees” in Germany Need to be Temporary Under New Draft Law

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Draft legislation regarding the reform of the German Act on the Supply of Temporary Employees (Arbeitnehmerüberlassungsgesetz – AÜG) has been introduced by Germany’s Federal Minister of Labor. Although further amendments to this draft are likely and a final version will not come into force before January 1, 2017, it is important to know what this means for temporary employment agencies and their customers, the host businesses.

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Proposed German Equal Pay Act May Complicate Remuneration Issues

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Statistics reveal a difference of 7 percent between the remuneration paid to men and that paid to women with the same qualifications in Germany. The average hourly wage even shows a difference of 22 percent, making pay discrepancy in Germany one of the highest in the EU. In order to adjust these wage injustices, the German Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth submitted a first preliminary ministerial draft of the German Equal Pay Act (Entgeltgleichheitsgesetz) on December 9, 2015. The act is expected to be adopted in 2016.

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