Recognized by the Globe and Mail as one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women, Nicolette Kost De Sèvres is a partner in Mayer Brown's Washington DC and Paris offices and a member of the Litigation & Dispute Resolution practice. She heads the Compliance, Regulatory and Investigations team in Paris. Prior to joining Mayer Brown, she served as global co-head of the Financial and Technology (Fintech) practice at another global law firm.
Nicolette has 19 years of experience as a lawyer in the corporate and financial regulatory sector and has practiced in London, Paris, Sydney, Washington DC and Montreal. She has several years of in-house experience, including service as special senior counsel in the New York Stock Exchange's Paris office (NYSE Euronext) and as special counsel at the Royal Bank of Scotland in London, where she advised on regulatory reforms and the implementation of new regulatory requirements. She also served as special counsel to the president and as chief of staff and of the financial markets regulator in Montreal.
In addition to her experience in anti-corruption and anti-money laundering compliance, risk assessment and investigation matters, Nicolette represents global banks, exchanges, trading firms and companies in matters involving compliance, regulatory obligations, derivatives and securities law, ISDA, reporting and cross-border issues, including the French Loi Sapin II, Dodd-Frank, MIFID, EMIR, AIFMD, BASEL, BRDD, AML, KYC, PDS2, fintech regulation, UK Bribery Act, FCPA/DOJ, World Bank Integrity Guidelines and ongoing international regulatory reforms. She regularly appears before regulators in Canada, Europe and the United States, including ESMA and the FCA, AMF, ACPR, CFTC, CFPB, FINRA, SEC, the World Bank and other multilateral banks.
Nicolette serves on several boards, including the American Chamber of Commerce in France. She is a sought-after writer and speaker on international financial markets and the effects of regulation on financial systemic risk, derivatives, high-frequency trading and the legal framework of European financial markets. Notably, she is the author of the book International Economic Law (2008) and one of the first articles on DLTs, “Blockchain Revolution: An Analysis of Regulation and Technology Related to Distributed Ledger Technologies” (2017).
In 2017, she was named on the Powerlist of Women of the Year in Fintech by Innovate Finance, in the UK and as Best Lawyer in European Law by Lawyer Monthly. Lawyer Monthly’s Magazine Women in Law Awards has recognized Nicolette as European Union Lawyer of the Year. (2017). She was named Star of the Quarter by the American Bar Association in 2007.
- Implementation of compliance plans required by the Sapin II law and the law on the duty of care for various international groups whose registered offices are in France.
- Implementation of anticorruption and anti-money laundering compliance plans for many international groups operating in France.
- Assistance and representation before the World Bank in the context of investigations and the monitoring of compliance programs.
- Drafting and review of global KYC and AML policies for international groups operating in France.
- Establishment of global risk mappings and implementation of compliance programs within international groups based in France.
- Organization of internal investigations in compliance matters, interviews with relevant executives, and analysis of documents in order to assess the risks of breaches to laws applicable in compliance matters for a company in the building sector.
- Implementation of guidelines in relation with the ethical charter of an international group, design and organization of training for executives in coordination with the group’s legal management: in-person and e-learning training sessions adapted to the sector-specific concerns).
- Implementation of a series of training sessions in France and in the United-Kingdom on the global risk of corruption for a French company in the publishing sector.
- Counsel to French companies on the occasion of stock exchange investigations conducted by US and Canadian regulators (SEC, CFTC, OCC, CFPB, AMF, OSC, OSFI and FINRA).
- Counsel to a France-based major international group at the occasion of investigations conducted by judicial authorities and a leading international organization regarding allegations of corruption in relation with the awarding of public procurements in Latin America and Africa.
- Setting-up of tools necessary to the maintenance of an efficient and continue compliance with French and US banking regulations within a major French bank.
- Organization of training sessions of sales representatives on at-risk practices in competition and corruption matters within an international group based in France and active in the building materials sector.
- Counsel to a French network manager on the implementation of a specific program for compliance to competition rules and organization of training sessions for in-house lawyers on the procedures of competition authorities and in particular in relation to investigations.
- Implementation of compliance programs in several major banks.
- Due diligence and assessment of compliance constraints on the occasion of external growth transactions, restructuring, financial or commercial transactions, in particular in the context of acquisitions or joint-ventures, partnerships, listing on markets or even commercial agreements.
- Assistance in the structuring of these transactions in order to ensure compliance with applicable anticorruption laws (including Sapin II Law, US FCPA and UK Bribery Act).
- Assistance in the drafting and negotiation of contractual clauses related to compliance questions in relation with these transactions.
- Specific assistance on the occasion of audits on the hiring of foreign commercial agents, consultants or business partners.
University of New South Wales, PhD, ABD, Finance, Technology and Regulation
University of Montréal, Montréal, Canada, LLM
University of Montréal, Montréal, Canada, JD
King's College London, Certificate in EU Law
- District of Columbia (as a Special Legal Consultant)
- American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) in France—board member
- Canadian Corporate Council Association—Quebec—former president
- Quebec Bar — former member of the executive board
- Montreal Bar—former member of the executive board
- Young Bar Association of Montreal - former president
- Quebec State Court of Appeals — former member of the executive board
- American Bar Association — Financial Products Committee
- Military Spouse JD Network
- International Bar Association
- Women in Housing and Finance
Continually recommended by the legal directories as a Leading Individual:
- In 2020, Nicolette Kost de Sèvres was short-listed by Women in Compliance in London as the Compliance Innovator of the Year.
- Gold Trophy in Compliance : The team, led by Nicolette Kost de Sèvres, was awarded the first prize Gold Trophy in the “Compliance” category at the Trophées du Droit 2019 ceremony in Paris, organized by Décideurs Magazine - Groupe Leaders League in January 2019.
- Décideurs, a French media and rating agency for top executives has recognized Nicolette Kost de Sèvres as "Excellent" in Compliance Compliance - International investigation and internal investigation as well as "Highly Recommended" in Compliance programs.
- The new edition of Décideurs, a french media and rating agency for top executives has recognized Nicolette Kost de Sèvres as "Excellent" in Compliance. (2017).
- Lawyer Monthly’s Magazine Women in Law Awards, has recognized Nicolette Kost de Sèvres as “European Union Lawyer of the Year”. (2017).
- Innovate Finance, an independent not-for-profit membership association representing the UK’s global community, has recognized Nicolette Kost de Sèvres in the "Powerlist of Women in Fintech". (2016).
- The Women’s Executive Network, Canada’s leading organization dedicated to the advancement and recognition of women in management, executive, professional and board roles, has recognized Nicolette Kost de Sèvres in the "Top 100 Most Powerful Women" in Canada. (2008).
- Premières en Affaires, a magazine dedicated to the recognition of women in Canada’s professional life, has recognized Nicolette Kost de Sèvres as a "Key figure of the year". (2008).
- American Bar Association (ABA) Young Lawyers’ Division awarded Nicolette Kost De Sevres with the Star of the Quarter. (2007).