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Mediator Profile Page
Mediator Profile Page
Mr. Jeremy Lack
Vide Profile Link
23 Ave. de Beau-Séjour
Singapore International Mediation Centre
Experience Qualification Path
Mediator Level 4
Jeremy Lack is an independent ADR neutral and deal facilitator specializing in the prevention and resolution of disputes and the facilitation of commercial transactions, especially in international or cross-cultural settings. He is familiar with common law and civil law proceedings.
Current Position and Background
- Independent ADR Neutral & Attorney-at-Law with LAWTECH (CH)
- Door Tenant with QUADRANT CHAMBERS (UK)
- Of Counsel to HELVETICA AVOCATS (CH)
- Co-founder NEUROAWARENESS CONSULTING SERVICES INC (USA) & INNOVADR (CH)
- Of Counsel to TOOLKIT COMPANY & LEGAL REBEL (NL)
Jeremy Lack is an independent ADR neutral and deal facilitator specializing in the prevention and resolution of disputes and the facilitation of commercial transactions, especially in international or cross-cultural settings. He is familiar with common law and civil law proceedings. He is a former partner with Etude ALTENBURGER in Geneva, Switzerland, a door tenant with QUADRANT CHAMBERS in London, and serves as counsel to CHARLES RUSSELL SPEECHLYS LLP in Geneva and HELVETICA AVOCATS in Nyon, Switzerland. He is also an adjunct professor with the FEDERAL POLYTECHNIC SCHOOL OF LAUSANNE (EPFL). Jeremy first qualified as an English barrister in 1989 and as a US attorney-at-law in 1990 (NY, various federal courts, and the USPTO). He is also registered with the bar of Geneva, Switzerland (ODAGE) as an EU lawyer, and serves on the Executive Committee of its Section of International Lawyers. He has worked for BECTON DICKINSON & CO, MEDABIOTECH and NOVIMMUNE in general counsel, director and interim management roles (including as CEO) and for several start-up companies. Jeremy is accredited by and has provided services to several mediation institutions in various countries (including IMI, WIPO, INTA, ICDR, JAMS, CSMC/SKWM, CMAP, CEDR, Result ACB, SIMC, and the Swiss Chambers of Commerce). He was recently ranked as one of the ten most highly regarded mediators by THE INTERNATIONAL WHO’S WHO OF COMMERCIAL MEDIATION 2011 and was ranked again under the "Most Highly Regarded Firms" for mediation in 2012 and in 2013. Jeremy serves as a Vice Chair on IMI's Independent Standards Commission, where he is responsible for all of its taskforces, and on several ADR leadership committees for ABA, CPR (Europe), CIArb, CSMC/SKWM, CCIG, IMI and GNII. He has Swiss, British, Israeli and US citizenships, and lives with his wife and two daughters in Geneva, Switzerland.
Mediation Practice Area(s)
Main Mediation Practice Area Description
Jeremy has a broad commercial ADR practice and works in several fields. His areas of specialism are cross-cultural or international civil and commercial disputes and deal mediations, typically where there are complex business, technological, personally sensitive or intellectual property issues involved. He has worked extensively with large corporations, start-up companies, NGOs, IGOs, universities, families, venture capital firms, and private equity situations, where different disputants or stakeholders are seeking pragmatic outcomes that are cheaper, faster and /or better than litigated outcomes, and where the parties seek to re-align their interests. He is comfortable working in civil law and common law jurisdictions and with highly charged or emotional disputes, including family disputes. Jeremy also specializes in cross-border disputes and transactions, family businesses, new technologies, life sciences, information and communication technology, and has a broad international dispute prevention and resolution practice (including deal facilitation, advocacy, arbitration, conciliation and mediation), including designing hybrid processes. His practice areas include:
- General Corporate & Commercial Law
- Finance & Banking
- Intellectual Property (creation, management, valuation & enforcement)
- Film, entertainment, music, multimedia & copyright disputes
- Internet, ICT & UDRP disputes
- Board, management, succession planning & governance disputes
- Intra-company disputes & team-building
- Inter-Governmental Organisations & Non-Governmental Organisations
- Investor-State Disputes
- Industrial construction, shipping & trading disputes
- Litigation / Conciliation / Arbitration & Combined ADR Processes
- M&A, Joint Ventures & Strategic Alliances
- Sports & Sponsorhip disputes
- Private Equity & Family Businesses
- Start-Up Companies / Venture Capital
- Medical ADR & Healthcare
- Pharmaceutical, biotech & medtech disputes (including licensing agreements)
- Technology Transfer
- Trusts, Estates, Divorces & Family disputes.
Mediating since 1996, and over 100 complex international cases involving a broad range of disputes and parties. Recent examples include:
Ad-hoc mediation: A multi-party international commercial dispute involving a leading industrial concern, the supplier of large-scale engineering equipment, insurers, reinsurers, and claims of over US$ 250 million. The mediation involved 23 participants and was resolved over a 3 month period, including one full day and two half day sessions. Acted as mediator appointed by the parties, who had different expectations of mediation as a process when initiating the proceedings. The parties were able to design a mutually acceptable process, exchange new information, and generate new business opportunities. (Approx. value of dispute € 250 million).
Institutional Mediation: Acted as co-mediator in a technology trade secret dispute between an engineering company and a large US corporation. (Approx. value of dispute US$ 70 million).
Ad-hoc mediation: Acted as mediator appointed by the parties in an IT dispute regarding the technical specifications of an interactive website. The matter was fully resolved and settled within 30 days of initiation of the proceedings, in one full day session, despite the reluctance of the parties to try mediation. (Approx. value of dispute: CHF 1’000’000).
Court-Appointed Mediation: Appointed as mediator by the court in a criminal matter, which was highly emotionally charged due to the involvement of members of a large international family-owned business. The matter was resolved within one day with two pre-caucus meetings.
Institutional mediation: Commodities trading dispute between a large Eastern European Group and a Southern European purchaser. The mediation occurred in parallel with institutional arbitration proceedings. Acted as the mediator appointed by the parties. A settlement agreement was reached following 1.5 days of mediation and using a consecutive interpreter. (Approx. value of dispute > € 16 million).
Institutional mediation: Real estate dispute between the heirs of an apartment complex, involving three generations of family members with diverging interests. The matter was resolved following 8 short mediation sessions, where the family members were also able to discuss and address other issues within the family. External experts and valuations were obtained. Acted as co-mediator together with a judge. (Approx. value of dispute > € 8 million).
Institutional mediation: Software technology dispute involving international copyright and trademark issues between two Eastern European companies and a Western company, with parallel arbitration proceedings pending. Acted as the mediator appointed by the parties. The parties were able to resolve both the arbitrational and future business issues that concerned them in six half day sessions over a three month period, after having considered several options. (Approx. value of dispute > € 3 million).
Institutional mediation: Escalating patent dispute with over five years of court proceedings pending in several countries, between a US multinational and a large European competitor. Acted as the mediator appointed by the parties. The parties were able within one day to resolve all court proceedings and to clarify issues that had not been understood during the national court proceedings. (Approx. value of the dispute > € 20 million).
Ad hoc mediation: An insurance dispute between a foreign claimant and a Swiss insurance company. Acted as court-appointed mediator, following ten years of escalating disputes and tensions between the parties. The parties were able to settle all past matters in four half-day meetings and agree on a process for the handling of all future claims by the claimant. (Approx. value of dispute < € 1 million).
Institutional mediation: Acrimonious commercial dispute involving several business partners located in Europe and North Africa. Initiated institutional mediation proceedings and acted as a collaborative counsel for one of the parties in the process. The parties were able to work together to clarify and resolve the key issues in a matter of 4 months, finding solutions that addressed their future business needs and avoided costly, lengthy and possibly inconsistent outcomes before national courts. (Approx. value of dispute = € 1.5 million).
Mediation Style Description
Jeremy uses a Guided Choice approach to mediation and an outcome-focused and holistic style that is adapted to cross-cultural disputes. He seeks to ensure that the parties have a common understanding of the mediation process (which can vary significantly country-by-country), and to tailor it to take into account each party’s perceived procedural needs and their future business interests. He seeks to build on each party’s national, legal and/or professional cultures, to help them design a process that is compatible with their values and in accordance with any existing constraints (e.g., in terms of budgets, deadlines and/or applicable laws). The goal is to reach an outcome, whether for settling a dispute or to facilitate a transaction in the context of reaching a business deal, which will satisfy the parties substantively, procedurally and psychologically. This approach is typically conducive to a facilitative style of mediation, where the mediator works with the parties to elicit their interests, positions, and alternatives in order to generate solutions that will respond to their mutual needs, and approaching the mediation as a social process. It can, however, also result in an evaluative or transformative process, or a combination of various types of mediation on different topics, depending on the constraints or perceived procedural needs of the parties. The mediator thus seeks to work closely with the parties and their counsel, preferably in joint sessions, to discuss process design issues and establish a mutual understanding of the purpose of the mediation, including one-another’s values, interests, positions, and alternatives and how the participants may jointly generate new options that will meet their needs and that are in accordance with any existing constraints. Emphasis is placed on prior preparation, stimulating creativity and collaborative problem-solving, even in tough disputes that have been adversarial to date. Caucuses are used sparingly, for specific purposes, or at the request of a party. The parties are encouraged to work in several joint sessions rather than use the mediator as a shuttle messenger to carry offers. The process can also be tailored to be part of other proceedings, whether parallel, separate or integrated. Proceedings may last one day, several 1/2 days, or over a period of several weeks or months, depending on the parties’ time constraints and other preferences.
Code of Professional Conduct
The European Code of Conduct for Mediators, in addition to various professional codes of conduct applicable to lawyers who are members of the bars of England & Wales, New York and Geneva.
Jeremy has agreed to adhere to IMI's complaints process. Parties are also encouraged to provide their feedback in an IMI Feedback Form to his Reviewer (see below)
Professional Indemnity Insurance
Jeremy is covered by a general professional liability insurance policy with ALLIANZ in Switzerland, which provides a 5 million Swiss Francs coverage. This policy includes all work done as a mediator or as an attorney.
Latest Update 18 February 2016
Reviewer: Ms Kalowski Joanna ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) Latest Update: 2016-02-03 10:00:47 This Feedback Digest is based on 15 feedback reports received from parties and lawyers in over 100 mediations conducted by Jeremy Lack from 2007 - 2014. (A 10% response rate is normal for surveys of this kind.) These mediations were conducted in many countries, including in Europe, the USA, and the Middle East with parties coming from all 5 continents. Most were highly complex commercial matters involving significant issues, commercial interests and large sums of money. They also tended to involve international or cross-border disputes. In a majority of matters, legal action or arbitration proceedings had already commenced, and in others, parties had unsuccessfully attempted other avenues of settlement. Some of these cases involved complex intellectual property or technology issues, although his cases seem to reflect a very broad range of disputes, including family and non-governmental organisations as well as start-up companies, partnerships, and industrial multinationals. Jeremy Lack has received some remarkable feedback. Parties comment on his calm and constructive approach, in one instance despite a grueling twenty-hour marathon mediation; on his management of process, and his capacity to make it known to the parties that the process of mediation really matters; and on the high level of skill and commitment he brings to complex international business disputes. All would recommend him to others. They all rated his skill and ability highly (4) or extremely highly (5) and commented on his capacity to evaluate a dispute realistically, help parties understand one another’s arguments, bridge substantial differences, and propose new avenues of settlement. Likewise when asked if they would use him again or would recommend him to others, all parties were unanimous in their willingness to do so. In addition, parties described themselves as very satisfied, even where the dispute was partly settled, another indication of their satisfaction with process, and the sense, expressed by one respondent, that this was the "discovery of a new process" in which "human interaction was great." Praise for this mediator extends from his content skills in business and IP law to his patience and excellent listening: "Ce mediateur fait montre d'une grande patience et d'une excellente ecoute." Another respondent, who considers himself "perfectly bilingual" saw Jeremy Lack as "more than fluent: his translation was perfect in the smallest details, and he was able to reconcile two opposite visions of business between the French ... and the American...approach." Another comments that his skill in the midst of a patent infringement law suit with a "seemingly impossible divide at the outset" at "bridging cultural and language differences (was) unsurpassed." Again and again, parties point to his valuable input in "balancing the disparate interests and cultural and language divides", and, in a tense situation, to his ability to create trust among parties and between parties and himself both for his technical skills and his abilities as a mediator. In a 2014 feedback report, the lawyer to one of the parties stated: "[Jeremy Lack is] particularly capable at turning positional confrontational statements into conciliatory offers, and leading constructive all-party discussions, so we could see for ourselves where the problems were." The marriage of experience in business and the law, strong process management skills and cross-cultural competence is at the heart of Jeremy Lack's effectiveness as a mediator where parties from very different backgrounds find themselves in complex cross-border legal disputes. Respondents also commented that Jeremy was able to reinstate respect between parties and show empathy, yet was able to liberate the parties from the ‘emotional baggage’ which had prevented them from negotiating in the past. This is the most telling aspect of Jeremy’s feedback: that his highly developed ability to deal with the tension and strong feelings associated with high-stakes international commercial disputes is placed in the service of mediation and settlement. As one party commented, even if the mediation had not settled, the atmosphere created during the mediation would undoubtedly have led to settlement at a later date because barriers to communication and understanding had been significantly lowered. This feedback also reveals interesting correlations between the resolution of most issues, overall satisfaction with the process and satisfaction with the costs of the mediation. It clearly indicates that where parties reach agreement on key issues, they are neutral or satisfied with the costs of mediating and have a high level of overall satisfaction. Jeremy Lack’s skills as a mediator not only enable parties in entrenched dispute to break through and resolve, but to do so in a manner which enhances their respect for the process and their readiness to recommend mediation - and Jeremy Lack - to others. Feedback digest 2014-15 This latest feedback reflects the growing complexity of matters mediated by Jeremy Lack, and also his established reputation as a mediator in matters parties regarded as intractable. It is also instructive to note that not one of the mediations for which feedback was received was conducted under the auspices of a provider organisation, and that users and parties chose Jeremy as mediator on the basis of his reputation, prior working relationships or recommendation by other professionals. This is a strong indicator of an emerging picture of user preference, and tallies with their stated intention to use him in future and to recommend him to others. Half the parties who commented stated they were prepared to appear as a reference on Jeremy’s IMI profile; a third said this was their first experience of mediation, yet all were equally clear on the value Jeremy added to the resolution of their disputes. Rated no less than highly or very highly for his skill and ability, parties praised his ability to “show everybody where their best interests were” and commented favourably on his “listening and empathy and his capacity to build trust and find consensus”. Other comments described the skilled way he is able to “unveil actual interests”, “bring about rational discussion” and “help quantify potential profit and loss for each party”. There is a further link to parties’ satisfaction with both process and outcome, and the fact that most issues were settled at mediation: it is that they described themselves as either very satisfied or neutral to the cost of the process. Their involvement in reaching settlement and their appreciation of the breaking of deadlocks is obviously well worth the costs involved. In summary, parties added comments that illustrate precisely what it is that users are looking for in a satisfactory mediation: “De-escalation of the dispute.” “Mediation…has been key to achieve an agreement …in a relatively short time, with an adequate outcome for both sides.” “Efficiency of process and exchanges in comparison to litigation...” Taken as a whole, the high praise for Jeremy’s performance as a mediator underlines both his high level skills and abilities as well as what parties are searching for in mediation. Once they find it and experience its results, they will seek it out again – and they will tell others about it. Joanna Kalowski Sydney, Australia
Centre de Médiation et d’Arbitrage de Paris (CMAP), France
Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR), UK
Chamber of Commerce of Milan, Italy
CPR: International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution, USA
Croatian Mediation Association (Honorary Member), Croatia
Global InterMediation, USA
Grand Council for the Canton of Geneva, Switzerland
International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR) Panelist, USA & Europe
International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), International
International Mediation Institute (IMI), International
International Trademark Association (INTA), International
In Place of Strife (IPOS), UK
JAMS International Panelist, USA & Europe
Result ADR, the Netherlands
Singapore International Mediation Centre, Asia
Swiss Chamber of Commercial Mediation (CSMC), Switzerland
World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), International
• Vice-Chair of the Independent Standards Commission of the International Mediation Institute (IMI) and a member of its Cross-Cultural, Investor-State, Hybrids, QAP and Mediation Advocacy Taskforces
• Co-Chair of the Swiss Chamber of Commercial Mediation (Section Romande) (CSMC/SKWM)
• Advisor to the Geneva Chamber of Commerce on mediation issues, and member of the Advisory Council for the Swiss Rules of Commercial Mediation of the Swiss Chambers of Commerce and Industry
• Member of the Executive Committee of the Section of International Lawyers of the Geneva Bar Association (ODAGE)
• Board member of the Gobal Negotiation Insight Institute (GNII)
• Board member of Negotiation & Conflict Management Group (NCMG) International, a pan-African non-for-profit association with its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland (see www.ncmginternational.org)
• Past Member of the Practices and Standards Committee of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and former Chairman of its Mediation Subcommittee (CIArb)
• Past Co-Chair of the International Committee of the American Bar Association (ABA)'s Dispute Resolution Section
Fees range at approximately SGD 7,000 per day of Jeremy Lack's services (assuming a complex commercial case). Discounts are available to individual disputants, small and medium-sized enterprises, start-ups and not-for-profit entities.
Mediation Education and Training
Jeremy's first training in mediation was in May 1995 with WIPO. Since then he has done numerous addutional trainings with a wide range of international ADR centres, including WIPO, CEDR, the Center for Mediation in Law, CPR, CMAP, CEMAJ, CSMC, CUNY Dispute Resolution Consortium,CIArb, Harvard (HNII), ISBM Admont, KonfliktKultur-KulturKonflikt, CICG, ODAGE, GEMME and JAMS. He is an active trainer and teacher, accredited by Toolkit Company in the Netherlands, and organizes regular training events for counsel and neutrals regarding the use of mediation and mediation advocacy, focusing on the process as part of the preparations and as a key determinant of outcomes. Jeremy has given trainings in Switzerland, Belgium, France, Spain, Holland, Croatia, Slovenia, Turkey, Italy, Morocco, Austria, Canada, Germany, Australia, the USA, Israel, Portugal and the UK and has studied with Profs. Gary Friedman, Bob Mnookin, Joanna Kalowsi, Jack Himmelstein, Mario Patera, Ulrike Gamm, Arnaud Stimec, Len RIskin, Marshall Rosenberg, Matthias Varga von Kibéd, Erica Fox, Ken Cloke, David Richbell, Harold Abramson and many others. He is a regular conference attendee, organizer and lecturer on mediation and hybrid procedures, and collaborates with the Swiss Interdisciplinary Centre for Affective Sciences (CISA) in studying the neurobiology of conflict and possible mechanisms to assist parties in decision-making processes in difficult situations. He is also the co-founder of Neuroawareness Consulting Services Inc., a California-based company seeking to integrate new understandings of the social, emotional and cognitive functioning of the human brain to integrate them into holistic processes and group dynamic situations.
Mediation Teaching and Mentoring
In addition to being a part-time faculty member at the Swiss Federal Polytechnic Institute of Lausanne (EPFL) for its Executive MBA Management of Technology (MoT) course, and an accredited mediation and mediation advocacy trainer with TOOKIT COMPANY in the Netherlands, Jeremy also teaches or has taught mediation at Geneva University (HEC), Neuchâtel University, IMD (MBA and Executive MBA courses), and WIPO (SME Division programs). He also is also a faculty member with the Geneva courts' new vocational training for lawyers about mediation (Ecole d'Avocature -- ECAV) and teaches students once a year at the International School of Geneva (ECOLINT) on conflict management and resolution. He is a faculty member and partner with NEUROAWARENESS(http://www.neuroawareness.com), a website for sharing knowledge and insights into how recent discoveries in neurobiology may assist ADR professionals in gaining a better understanding of their roles in negotiations, conflict prevention and dispute resolution. He also gives regular trainings to companies, law firms and legal departments on how to prepare and participate in mediation and other ADR proceedings. He includes mediation and ADR process design techniques in most of his teachings and practice areas. For references regarding training programs provided by him for Neuroawareness, see: http://www.neuroawareness.com/references/testimonials-about-our-workshops/. Jeremy serves as the Global Coordinator of the Global Pound Conference Series (see: www.globalpoundconference.org) and is also a Vice-Chair of IMI's Independent Standards Commission, responsible for all of its Taskforce activities.
Recent publications include:
- P.M. Lurie & J. Lack, “Guided Choice Dispute Resolution Processes: Reducing the Time and Expense to Settlement” in Dispute Resolution International Vol. 8, No. 2, October 2014, pp. 167-177.
- J. Lack, “A mindful approach to evaluative mediation” in MfN Tijdschrift Conflicthantering Nummer 3, pp. 18-23 (2014)
- P.M. Lurie & J. Lack, “The Seven Principles of Guided Choice Dispute Resolution Processes”, Who’s Who Legal Mediation (2014), pp. 17-19
- M. Schonewille & J. Lack, “Mediation in the European Union and Abroad: 60 States Divided by a Common Word?” in The Variegated Landscape of Mediation: A Comparative Study of Mediation Regulation and Practices in Europe and the World (Ed. M. Schonewille & F. Schonewille), Eleven International Publishing, the Netherlands (2014), Chapter 2, pp. 19-44
- J. Lack & A. Lafranchi; “Chapter 32. Switzerland” in The Variegated Landscape of Mediation: A Comparative Study of Mediation Regulation and Practices in Europe and the World (Ed. M. Schonewille & F. Schonewille), Eleven International Publishing, the Netherlands (2014), Chapter 2, pp. 19-44
- J. Lack, Proposed rules for Arbitration-Mediation (ARB-MED) (2014)
- J. Lack, Chapter 5, “Outline of Civil & Commerical Mediation in Switzerland” in How to Master Mediation (Ed. David Richbell) in publication (2015)
- J. Lack; M. Leathes; W.J. von Kumberg; "Enabling Early Settlement in Investor-State Arbitration - The Time to Introduce Mediation Has Come", TDM 1 (2014), www.transnational-dispute-management.com
- Invited speaker to the United Nations’ Geneva Peace Talks on Sept. 20th 2013 (See: http://webtv.un.org/search/jeremy-lack-geneva-peace-talks-2013/2728619050001?term=Peace)
- "The Neurophysiology of ADR and Process Design: A New Approach to Conflict Prevention and Resolution?", 34 Cardozo J. of Conflict Resolution [Vol. 14:33] 2012, pp. 33-80 (also published in Contemporary Issues in International Arbitration and Mediation: The Fordham Papers 2011, Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 2012 pp. 341-82)
- "Negotiation and Neuroscience: Possible Lessons for Negotiation Instruction”, guest lecture to Harvard University’s Program on Negotiation (PON) faculty dinner in November 2012 (see http://www.pon.harvard.edu/research_projects/negotiation-pedagogy-program-on-negotiation/negotiation-and-neuroscience-possible-lessons-for-negotiation-instruction/)
- "Bediou B, Mohri C, Lack J and Sander D (2011), “Effects of outcomes and random arbitration on emotions in a competitive gambling task”, Front. Psychology 2:213. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2011.00213
- "Appropriate Dispute Resolution (ADR): The Spectrum of Hybrid Techniques Available to the Parties, Chapter 17 to ADR in Business, Practice and Issues Across Countries And Cultures (Kluwer Law International, edited by A. Ingen-Housz, 2011)
- "Case Comment No. 7.2": in Practical Ethics for Mediators by Ellen Waldman (2011)
- "The Growing Need for ADR in IP Disputes", Intellectual Property Magazine, December 2010 pp. 19-22
- "Understanding the Mind in Peace Negotiations: The Neurobiology of Conflict and New Approaches to Dispute Prevention and Resolution" position paper and presentation for the James Martin 21st Century School, Oxford University, UK on (Mar 10, 2010) together with Baronness Susan Greenfield
- "Finding an International Mediator: Identifying Suitable Candidates to Mediate an International Commercial Dispute" (co-written with Michael McIlwrath, Diane Levin, & Giovanni Nicola Giudice), The Peacemaker, Vol. 24, No. 2 February 2010
- "The New Swiss Rules of Commercial Mediation of the Swiss Chambers of Commerce and Industry: Possible Links to Arbitration", Müller/Rigozzi (eds.) New Developments in International Commercial Arbitration 2008, Schulthess Editions Romandes 2008, pp. 105-24
- "The Interaction Between Arbitration and Mediation: Vision vs. Reality", Dispute Resolution International, May 2007 Vol 1 no 1 (also published in SchiedsVZ, C.H. Beck Verlag, Muni