Robert Wheal

Partner, London



Robert Wheal is a partner in the Dispute Resolution group in London, whose practice focuses on international arbitration and commercial litigation.

Robert has handled a large number of substantial international commercial disputes for clients, in particular those from energy, finance and infrastructure sectors. He has a broad range of experience in the English Courts and substantial experience of ICC, LCIA and ad hoc arbitrations. He is also an active member of the Africa Disputes group and regularly lectures on arbitration in Nigeria.

A Solicitor Advocate, Robert frequently acts as lead advocate on matters on which he is instructed and has represented clients in mediations and expert determinations as well as arbitrations.

Robert is also an active contributor to the Firm's pro-bono activities.

Bars and Courts
England and Wales
Chancery Lane
(in law)
St. John's College, Cambridge University
in construction law and arbitration
King's College London


Examples of international arbitration representations include:

  • Representing the Claimants in three LCIA arbitrations relating to a shareholder dispute and ancillary dispute linked to an African port facility.
  • Representing an East African state-owned party in a shareholder dispute in ICC proceedings relating to an agricultural joint venture. The case raises issues of contractual termination.
  • Representing the minority shareholder in an LCIA arbitration between the shareholders of an oil and gas company concerning a dispute whether a development plan for two fields was binding and in accordance with industry standards. The dispute also gave rise to two expert determinations regarding the proposed field development plan.
  • Acting for the minority shareholder in an LCIA arbitration brought by the majority shareholder of a joint venture oil and gas company in relation to a claim for deferred consideration.
  • Representation of an African State in a multi-billion-dollar LCIA arbitration relating to a contract to build a hydropower plant and in ancillary arbitral proceedings.
  • Representing a joint venture party in relation to a dispute between shareholders regarding a port in West Africa under the LCIA arbitration rules.
  • Representing a shareholder in a joint venture dispute between shareholders relating to a business in the Middle East in both the English Courts and LCIA arbitral proceedings.
  • Representing a minority shareholder in relation to a shareholder dispute in relation to a West African oil field development.
  • Defending an employer in LCIA arbitration proceedings relating to cost overrun claims in relation to fertiliser plant in the Middle east and in relation to an LCIA claim brought by a specialist contractor.
  • Representing the noteholders and security trustee on litigation strategy in relation to several parallel sets of proceedings in Nigeria, France and England, worth over US$1 billion in connection with the collapse of an oil company.
  • Acting for the minority shareholder of a joint venture oil and gas company in an LCIA arbitration claim against the majority shareholder. The shareholders' dispute arose out of the settlement of a major arbitration regarding oil and gas assets in the Middle East.
  • Representing a Finnish technology company in two SIAC arbitrations relating to the acquisition of an Indian technology company.
  • Representing a Bulgarian investor in a coal mine in ICSID proceedings against Serbia under the Bulgaria-Serbia BIT.
  • Advising the Central Bank of an African state on issues relating to the potential challenge of an international arbitral award.
  • Representing a vendor in an UNCITRAL arbitration relating to alleged breaches of a share purchase agreement.
  • Representing a national energy company in Eastern Europe in an ICC arbitration for more than 1 billion dollars concerning the construction of a nuclear power plant.
  • Advising a major oil and gas company in an ad hoc arbitration under Sharia law in the Middle East concerning a major gas plant debottlenecking project. The claim concerned major claims for delays and variations.
  • Representing the lead member of a contractor consortium in an ICC arbitration against a government entity in relation to claims and counterclaims concerning the termination of a major rail project in Southern Europe. The case included lengthy hearings on liability and quantum with delay analysis and variation claims.
  • Representing a joint venture in an ICC arbitration relating to the construction and operation of an acid plant and associated tank farm in the Middle East.
  • Representing a consortium of oil companies in an ICC arbitration concerning the construction of a gas plant in North Africa.
  • Advising a telecoms company on a major ICC competition law arbitration relating to a television channel.
  • Advising on two substantial LCIA arbitrations for a major financial institution in relation to an equity investment in Georgia.

Examples of commercial litigation representations include:

  • Representing a shareholder in a joint venture dispute on an anti-suit injunction and in relation to the parallel LCIA proceedings.
  • Representing a Pakistani drinks manufacturers, in a multi-million pound dispute concerning its licensing arrangement with the brand owner.
  • Intervening in a Supreme Court Case for Justice, the Innocence Project and the Criminal Appeal Lawyers' Association in relation to the rules on preservation of evidence post-conviction.
  • Advising on litigation in England, Switzerland and the Isle of Man for three investment banks in relation to their multi-million pound investment in Formula 1.
  • Defending a delay claim related to works undertaken at the Rolls Building by a specialist subcontractor in the High Court and Court of Appeal.
  • Advice re a major claim M&A dispute in the Fintech sector relating to competition law clearances.