Eleni Polycarpou

Partner and Co-Head of International Arbitration

  • Education: Durham University, BA (Hons) Social Sciences and MA Politics, College of Law (London)
  • Admitted: England and Wales, 2005 • British Virgin Islands, 2013
  • Languages spoken: Italian • Greek
  • Year joined: 2003
  • Year became partner: 2017


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Eleni is a Partner in the Commercial Litigation and Arbitration team and is Head of International Arbitration.

She specialises in international and domestic commercial disputes including heavyweight commercial fraud work both in the English Courts and in international arbitration. She acts for high net worth individuals and their companies often advising on shareholder and joint venture disputes, banking disputes, contract and tort disputes. She is also a member of our global art group and responsible for contentious art matters in the London office.  

Eleni is currently acting in a number of misselling claims against banks in England and also in a number of art related disputes including insurance fraud and title disputes. In arbitration, she is acting as party appointed Counsel in ICC and LCIA as well as ad hoc arbitration proceedings for clients ranging from Italy, the CIS and Africa. She acts for a premiership football club and for well known Italian fashion brands. Eleni has a specialism in art law and art arbitration in particular.

She is from Cyprus and speaks fluent Greek, English and Italian.

Eleni is well known in the field of commercial disputes and often takes on professional indemnity matters for a range of professionals, including barristers. One observer notes: 'She just gets it, she knows how cases should be handled, especially when it comes to very sensitive matters.' Chambers and Partners 2016

'She's extraordinarily hard-working and conscientious.'

Chambers 2015

'calm and efficient solicitor' and a 'star of the future.'

Chambers 2014


  • ICC Arbitration – acting in relation to a dispute over the construction of a large project in Egypt
  • Ad-Hoc Arbitration – acting for an Italian fashion brand in a dispute with a distributor
  • LCIA Arbitration – acting for a company owned by a Russian Oligarch in fraud proceedings over the alleged alienation of a Russia based asset; proceedings brought in the LCIA and in parallel proceedings taking place in Russia, Cyprus and in the BVI and involving resisting freezing order applications in all the jurisdictions
  • Quoted extensively by theWealthnet in a story about the position of accountholders in Cyprus' banks, who are trying to bring civil claims for their losses
  • LCIA Arbitration - acting for a high net worth Russian individual in a joint venture dispute involving, apart from substantial LCIA proceedings, freezing orders applications and claims in Cyprus, BVI and Russia
  • BVI proceedings - acting for a high net worth Russian entrepreneur in a shareholder dispute over Russian assets held through Cyprus and BVI companies
  • Acting for an Italian family owned business in an adjudication involving a dispute over the supply of a lift in a well-known UK landmark
  • Acting for a Macedonian joint venture between two construction companies in an arbitration dispute with the Macedonian Government over the construction of a dam
  • Acting for a high net worth London based banker/financier in a joint venture dispute involving an investment in an oil storage vessel held through a Mauritius Company. This is a claim for fraud played out in London, Mauritius and the Seychelles
  • Acting for a well known Italian fashion brand in a dispute with its UK franchisee
  • Acting for a premiership football club in a number of disputes with former directors
  • Acting for the Russian shareholder of a Cyprus registered company in a dispute with its joint venture partners in LCIA arbitration and injunctive proceedings in Cyprus
  • Acting for a financial services firm in an arbitration claim for breach of contract against two independent financial advisers
  • LCIA arbitration - acting for Greek clients in substantial LCIA arbitration in respect of a proposal merger in Greek pay TV market against a Dutch multi national
  • Carol Williams v Thompson Leatherdale (A Firm) and Nicholas Francis [2008] EWHC 2574
  • Pritchard Joyce and Hinds (A Firm) v David Batcup and Peter Susman QC [2008] EWHC 20
  • Asiansky Television PLC & Anor v Khanzada & Ors [2011] EWHC 2831
  • Darby Investment Services Inc v Inguetberg SA [2013] Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court
  • Konstantin Kagalovsky (1) Wilcox Investments Ltd (2) v (1) Balmore Invest Limited and Others [2015] EWHC 1337 (QB)

Publications and speaking engagements


  • Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators
  • Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, MCIArb
  • British Italian Law Association
  • AIJA
  • London Court of International Arbitration Young Arbitration Group
  • British Russian Law Association (BRLA)
  • Russia and CIS Arbitration Network (RCAN)

On a personal note

When Eleni is not busy with her 2 children, she loves travel and cooking. She has previously backpacked extensively through central and south America, as well as Australia, New Zealand and India. She has also spent a year working and studying in Italy, and six months in Brussels as part of a stage at the European Commission.


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