The Annual General Meeting (AGM) 2007 was a special event in three ways:
- A new Advisory Board had to be elected according our statutes. The term of the previous Advisory Board had expired at this event.
- The meeting site Prague was a unique experience. Prague’s historic old-town district is filled with unmatched sightseeing attractions that bear impressive witness to the importance of this city during the Middle Ages. Many participants made the most of the fair weather opportunity to explore Prague’s old city on foot.
- With about 150 participants this meeting was very well attended.
Martin Klimpl and his crew from the law firm of Becker & Poliakoff, v.o.s., arranged a varied and interesting program, proving us to be exceptional and outstanding hosts.
It has already become at tradition that early arriving participants meet on Wednesday evening for an informal dinner. This time about 20 people gathered in the „Plzenská“ restaurant. This tavern – designed and decorated in pure art-deco style – is located in the basement of the famous Municipal House, one of the most beautiful examples of Prague’s art nouveau architecture.
On Thursday morning (3 May 2007) the marketing steering group (MSG) met for a briefing on the developing status of a new Consulegis website. That afternoon the Advisory Board met for the last time after working for four years together in its existing composition.
In the evening our hosts invited guests to a „welcoming cocktail“ gathering in the very representative „Kaiserstejnsky Palace“. The trip in historic trams was an extraordinary experience for many.
The Annual General Meeting took place on Friday, 4 May 2007, in the Hotel Carlo IV. About 160 people attended the conference, representing 58 member firms coming from 23 countries.
The highlight of this year’s General Assembly was the election of a new Advisory Board. Ten regular members had to be elected as Advisory Board members, and 13 people made themselves available as candidates. Seven members of the previous Advisory Board sought reelection.
Elected were (in alphabetical order): Esben Bigaard, Fernando Hernandez Gomez, Michael Newman, Harald Nickel, Pedro Pais de Almeida, Howard Palser (Vice-Chairman), Dr. Henrich Schleifenbaum (Ombudsman), Irmtraud Wendland, Jonathan Wood (Marketing), and Gerd O. Ziegenfeuter (Chairman).
Two guest speakers, Dr. Pavel Telicka, former first EU Commissioner of the Czech Republic, and Radek Spicar, managing director of Skoda Automobile, provided interesting insights into local economic issues.
Friday afternoon was devoted to „Examples for successful collaboration between Consulegis firms“. Seven projects were described in short reports, proving that well matched groupings of CONSULEGIS members could gain projects and businesses that are normally only reserved for larger and multinational law firms.
On Saturday morning was reserved for our Specialist Groups. The „international intellectual property, entertainment law, and IT” group (coordinator: Jeffery Daar) decided on publication of an „IP Book“, while the “corporate and tax law“ group (coordinator: Guy Facey) intensified contacts between members of this group. The „litigation and arbitration“ group (coordinator: Dr. Eckart Brödermann) concluded that class action can be extremely attractive for member firms in Consulegis.
A new “aerospace” specialist group (coordinator: Andrew Hamilton) decided to check the possibilities of manning a Consulegis stand at one of the next international aerospace fairs.
It is extraordinarily interesting and gratifying to observe how the specialist groups – formerly conceived as mere discussion forums – now tackle and also carry out ever more specific business models and business opportunities.
Another highlight was once again the gala dinner on Saturday evening. Our hosts reserved one of Prague’s best restaurants, the Mlynec, directly above the Moldau and located beside the famous Karlsbridge. We were invited afterwards to a neighboring bar, where tequila “à gogo” was offered as a sympathetic reminder of our next meeting site in Mexico!
We thank the hosts – particularly Martin Klimpl and Vladka Sedova – for the outstanding meeting and warm hospitality.