Nicolai is Managing Partner at Fenech & Fenech Advocates since 2021 and heads the Commercial and Corporate Law Department and the Asset & Project Finance Department and co-heads the Aviation Law Department.

 

Nicolai is an experienced commercial and corporate lawyer having practised in this area since 1998.  In particular his practise includes commercial and corporate litigation, mergers & acquisitions, asset, corporate and project finance, aviation law and general commercial law. 

 

Nicolai is an examiner within the Faculty of Law at the University of Malta.  He is a contributor to a number of international publications such as Aircraft Liens and Detention Rights (Sweet & Maxwell) and Aircraft Finance – Registration, Security and Enforcement (Sweet & Maxwell) and he is ranked and recommended in a number of peer-to-peer publications including Chambers, Legal 500, and the Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory.

 

Nicolai has a wealth of experience in commercial and corporate law and in particular in M&A transactions both local and cross-border. 

 

His expertise also includes corporate, project and asset finance and he has been involved in numerous finance transactions giving specialised advice with regard to the different types of security available to creditors in terms of Maltese law.  His practice in this area includes in particular expertise aircraft finance transactions and he has an in-depth knowledge of the Cape Town Convention and the Aircraft Protocol as applying to security interests in aircraft and related assets.

 

Nicolai is also an experienced litigator in commercial and corporate disputes and handles court and arbitration cases of this nature on a continuing basis. He is also a lecturer in Commercial Law at the University of Malta.

Education

University of London – London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) 1997 – 1998 Masters (LL.M.): Commercial & Corporate Law

 

University of Malta – Malta 1995 – 1997 Doctor of Laws (LL.D.) Title of doctoral thesis: Ships as a Cause of Marine Pollution – The role of Regulatory Legislation in its Prevention

 

University of Malta – Malta 1991 – 1995 Diploma – Notary Public

Publications
  • Aircraft Liens and Detention Rights, Thomson,  – Author of Malta Chapter
  • Aircraft Finance – Registration, Security and Enforcement Longman, Author of Chapter on Malta
  • “Global Legal Insights in Energy (Third Edition) – “co-author of Malta Chapter”, published by Global Legal Group Ltd, London, September 2014
  • Air Finance Journal, Author of Cape Town Convention vs Brussels Regulation 44/2001, August 2014
  • Co-author “Aviation finance and security interests in Malta: a new impetus”, published by Thomson Reuters in Practical Law Review, May 2014
  • Co-author “Security and quasi-security vehicles for lenders in Malta: an increasingly creditor-friendly jurisdiction”, published by Thomson Reuters in Practical Law Review, March 2014
  • Co-author of Malta Chapter in fifth edition of The Mergers & Acquisitions Review, Law Business Research Limited, London, 2011
  • Air Transport (Getting the Deal Through), Co-Author of Malta Chapter, 2011
  • The Comparative Legal Guide To Merger Control, Global Legal Group UK, Author of Chapter on Malta, 2005 to 2009
  • A Practitioner’s Guide To Takeovers And Mergers In The Emerging EU (City & Financial), Author of Chapter on Malta,  2003, 2008
Memberships

IBA – International Bar Association

 

EALA – European Aviation Law Academy

 

IFSP – Institute of Financial Services Practitioners – Malta

 

Chamber of Advocates – Malta

 

Chamber of Commerce – Malta

Recommendations

Legal 500 2021:

 

The ‘powerful, commercial team’ at Fenech & Fenech Advocates is experienced in M&A transactions, restructuring and regulatory work. The practice head is Nicolai Vella Falzon, who has a ‘remarkable ability to leverage civil law expertise to negotiate an escrow contract.’

 

‘Excellent. The client receives top quality service at reasonable fees. Fenech & Fenech has a powerful commercial team, headed by partner Mr. Nicolai Vella Falzon. They are top notch professionals. We have absolute trust in them.’

 

Nicolai Vella Falzon is a key name for complex corporate litigation particularly unfair prejudice actions and shareholder disputes.

 

The aviation team at Fenech & Fenech Advocates is experienced in structured sale or lease back transactions, financed leases, sale and purchase deals, management operations and aircraft registrations. The practice, jointly led by Nicolai Vella Falzon, is known for its ‘sector experience, efficiency and no-nonsense attitude’.

 

Chambers Global 2021:

Clients report that Nicolai Vella Falzon has “huge experience in commercial and business matters and he is smart, compelling and fearless in the courtroom.” He advises clients on M&A transactions and corporate restructurings. A source particularly highlights his experience in the aviation sector, saying: “He knows this matter and he is one of the best in Malta.”

 

Legal 500 EMEA 2020:

 

Nicolai Vella Falzon is an excellent attorney, great experience in corporate law. His advice is always accurate and comprehensive. He is always available for the company and willing to resolve any issue that may arise. He is an excellent professional.

 

Nicolai Vella Falzon acts with flawless integrity and really cares for his clients. Nicolai and his team have been committed to servicing the complicated needs of our aviation business over the last few years and have always been at the end of the phone whenever we have needed their assistance and support. The quality of their deliverable is superb. On one occasion, Nicolai made the time to refer us to a competitor firm when he was not in a position to provide a direct solution to our challenges. This, in my view, is a true example of a preferred supplier; taking the time to seek a solution for us without benefiting from any financial gain.

 

Chambers Europe 2020:

 

Clients appreciate his ability to provide “very accurate and risk-assessed advice” and describe him as “diligent and trustworthy.

 

Chambers Global 2020:

 

Nicolai Vella Falzon advises international companies on acquiring and merging with Maltese entities. He also assists international clients with establishing branches in Malta. Clients appreciate his ability to provide “very accurate and risk-assessed advice” and describe him as “diligent and trustworthy.

 

Chambers Europe 2019:

 

Nicolai Vella Falzon advises clients on commercial investments, and acts on projects and maritime litigation. Clients laud him for being “very responsive and very knowledgeable.”

 

Legal 500 2019:

 

The team at Fenech & Fenech Advocates provides legal advice on the aviation sector ‘with in-depth knowledge and a high degree of practicality’. Nicolai Vella Falzon leads on commercial aviation transactions.

 

Chambers Europe 2018:

 

Nicolai Vella Falzon maintains a distinguished reputation in the corporate space. He is recognised for his ability in the aviation space, and assists clients with M&A, corporate contracts work and project finance. Clients consider him “a remarkable professional.”

 

Legal 500 2018:

 

The transaction-focused team at Fenech & Fenech Advocates leverages the firm’s transport, asset finance and tax strengths to advise a broad client base.  Nicolai Vella Falzon heads the department.

 

Chambers Europe 2017:

 

Nicolai Vella Falzon receives extensive praise from clients and peers alike who say: “He is one to watch.” They add: “I found him to be knowledgeable, very responsive and professional in his approach.”

 

Chambers Europe 2016:

 

Nicolai Vella Falzon is cited by clients as a “strategic professional with solid knowledge of corporate matters.” Also highlighted are his “wise solutions” and availability.

 

Legal 500 2016:

 

Fenech & Fenech Advocates’ aviation practice is led by Nicolai Vella Falzon, and is able to leverage the reputation of the firm’s leading transport group.

 

Chambers Europe 2015:

 

Nicolai Vella Falzon heads the department and handles mostly transactional work. Clients appreciate his personable approach and good collaboration with more junior members of his team.

 

Legal 500 2015:

 

Fenech & Fenech Advocates’ ‘high-calibre’ aviation team combines ‘excellent legal skills with detailed industry knowledge’, and is part of one of Malta’s best-regarded transport practices. Nicolai Vella Falzon is singled out by clients.

 

Chambers Europe 2014:

 

Department head Nicolai Vella Falzon handles both transactions and disputes, and is singled out for praise by interviewees: “He is very talented – I respect him highly.”

 

Legal 500 2014:

 

Fenech & Fenech Advocates is a first tier firm, for Corporate and M&A. In addition to strengths in corporate finance transactions and M&A, the practice is also noted for its privatisation capability. Sources say Practice head Nicolai Vella Falzon is ‘a trusted adviser’.

 

Chambers Europe 2013:

 

Practice head Nicolai Vella Falzon wins praise for his efficiency, with one source saying: “He knows what is being asked of him very quickly and without any fuss. No need for going back and forth. He understands what is wanted and produces it.”

 

Legal 500 2013:

 

Nicolai Vella Falzon is recommended in Corporate and M&A.

 

Chambers Europe 2012:

 

Practice head Nicolai Vella Falzon handles corporate and commercial work as part of a varied practice that also covers aviation and IT matters.

 

Chambers Europe 2011:

 

Young partner Nicolai Vella Falzon’s practice encompasses M&A, projects, asset finance and aviation. “Very bright and active”