Much like most BLP offices across the region, the Nicaragua branch boasts strength in corporate and M&A and is also active in handling banking and finance mandates. Having carved out a strong position providing a comprehensive service offering to clients across the region, this team is no exception and has demonstrated its ability to land places on big-ticket M&A deals, including several cross-border transactions. The firm’s regional presence ensures it stays busy even in times of less local work, with lawyers frequently flown between jurisdictions to ensure clients always get the best advice. In a recent example, lawyers in Nicaragua recently joined forces with colleagues at BLP offices in Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras to advise Colombian paint and coating company Grupo Orbis on its acquisition by Dutch counterpart AkzoNobel, a deal that spanned 10 jurisdictions in Latin America.
As other firms have reported in this chapter, the past few years have been difficult in Nicaragua. Political and economic instability followed the anti-government protests that erupted in April 2018, which had a substantial effect on transactional work. However, the firm remains optimistic and in 2022 has noted an increase in real estate work, particularly in coastal developments.
Across the region, BLP has prioritised technological investments, including developing software intended to provide a client quote based on a calculation, as well as investing in its accounting and billing software in recent years, and rolling out an AI platform for the automation of notary public services.
Consolidation of the firm’s current offices across Central America also remains high on the firm’s agenda, with a strategic plan for the region having been established, as well as individual plans for each office.
BLP’s broad service offering has not gone unnoticed by clients, as demonstrated by its popularity among Latin America’s largest companies. According to in-house counsel research conducted by LACCA, the Latin American Corporate Counsel Association, which is affiliated to Latin Lawyer, BLP – across Central America – represents 16 of 100 of the biggest companies in Latin America. This makes it the most popular firm among these clients in Central America.
Thanks to its well-rounded approach to law firm management, as well as a horizontal work structure and attractive environment for lawyers, the firm has been able to expand rapidly and attract substantial talent, solidifying BLP’s position as a market leader and 2023 Latin Lawyer Elite firm.
Ernesto Rizo is the local managing partner in Nicaragua. He is part of BLP’s regional managing committee which includes the executive committee which runs the firm across the region. Luis Castro is BLP’s regional managing partner.
Alliances & networks
BLP is a member of international law networks Interlaw, Meritas, State Capital Global Law Firm Group and World Services Group.
BLP has offices across Central America. It is present in the capitals of El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Honduras, as well as in the industrial city of San Pedro Sula in the latter country. The firm’s largest office is in San José, Costa Rica, where it also maintains outposts in Los Sueños and Guanacaste. A representative office was added in Madrid in 2017. Since 2019, a special counsel is based in Mexico City and focuses on business between Mexico and Central America.