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Stephen Bate

stephen bate ArbDB Chambers,Arbitrators, Mediators, Adjudicators and Dispute Board Members. London. Dubai. Singapore

Stephen Bate is a British citizen, Chartered Arbitrator, barrister and accredited mediator, with a UK domestic and international commercial arbitration practice carried on through ARBDB, international arbitration chambers in London. His practice background is as a barrister at the English Bar, with over 30 years’ experience in a range of civil and commercial matters, specialising in media & entertainment law, latterly at 5RB barristers’ chambers until 2017.


Stephen was accredited as a mediator in the UK by the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) in 2002 and has since mediated approximately 200 cases with values up to £250M in a very wide range of commercial disputes, with a settlement rate of about 70%. His mediation practice is carried out through CEDR:


Stephen is listed in Who’s Who Legal 2022 and the Legal 500 2022 as a recommended / leading mediator.

Arbitral and Other Appointments(1)


These include the following -


  • Dispute over performance of a shareholders’ agreement of a telecommunications company, arbitration under UNCITRAL Rules. Award of US$130M (co-arbitrator).

  • Dispute over exercise of pre-emption rights over further shares in the same company; arbitration under UNCITRAL Rules. Claim value c. US$80M (co-arbitrator).

  • Sole arbitrator in contract dispute concerning the supply of education services to the Middle East, claim value c. £2M.

  • Sole arbitrator in LLP partnership dispute concerning accountancy business; claims brought by partnership against one partner and cross-claims.

  • Sole arbitrator in disputes concerning partnership retirement and enforceability of restrictive covenants against a leaving partner.

  • Sole arbitrator in dispute between medical partnership and ex-partner over restrictive covenant.

  • Sole arbitrator in dispute concerning contracts for the provision of facilities for the UK National Health Service.

  • Sole arbitrator in dispute involving claims relating to the sale and re-purchase of fleet motor vehicles.         

  • Sole arbitrator in patent licence dispute.

  • Sole arbitrator in dispute concerning the supply of advertising services.

  • Sole arbitrator in contractual loss of profits dispute in the fashion industry. 

  • Sole arbitrator in sale of goods dispute. 

  • Sole arbitrator in contract dispute in the soft drinks industry.

  • Chairman, English Football League Arbitration Panel; dispute between two clubs concerning the unauthorised disclosure of a transfer fee.    

  • Chairman of arbitrators for the English Football Association in disputes between player and player’s agent under Rule K procedures.

  • Chairman of Football League’s Disciplinary Commission (FDC) in arbitration under EFL’s Rules and Regulations concerning financial disclosures by former Chairman of Watford FC on behalf of the club; decision in public domain EFL v Raffaele Riva. 

  • FDC Chairman in arbitration between football clubs under EFL’s Rules and Regulations over the poaching of a management team; decision in public domain Colchester FC v Norwich FC.

  • FDC Chairman in dispute between player and club arising from termination of player’s contract. 

  • FDC Chairman in dispute between (i) club and youth player over player’s registration and (ii) clubs and player over liability to pay ‘signing on’ fee.

  • 15 ABTA documents-only arbitrations in holiday and travel cases.

  • 2007-2016, legal member of the Licensing Committee of UK horse racing’s regulator (the British Horseracing Authority), chairing numerous hearings under ‘fit and proper person’ jurisdiction of the regulator.

  • Legal Assessor/Adviser, sitting with and advising Fitness to Practise Panels for the General Dental Council and Health and Care Professions Tribunal Service in misconduct, performance and health cases and for the Charted Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) in disciplinary cases; previous experience (2010-2018) sitting as Legal Assessor in GMC/MPTS (doctors’ fitness to practise) and racing corruption cases.

  • Approximately 70 documents-only adjudications for CISAS under UK Communications Act 2003.

  • 75 expert determinations for Nominet in registration disputes over internet domain name registrations.

1. The arbitration appointments were by the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, by courts (English High Court, the Federal High Court of Nigeria), the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) and by appointing bodies in sports matters, such as Sport Resolutions for the English Football Association and English Football League.

Areas of Arbitration Work


Fields of work covered include commercial contracts (eg distribution agreements, joint ventures, partnership/shareholder), ICT (information, communications and technology), telecommunications, intellectual property, media & entertainment, property, healthcare, sport. 


The above include/further areas are: sale of goods, supply of services, licensing agreements, franchise agreements, gas supply contracts, computer contracts, employment contracts, restrictive covenant disputes,  guarantee claims, contract disputes in many other different fields, e.g. sale of companies, warranty claims under sale and purchase agreements, agency agreements, contracts for advertising services; landlord & tenant, professional negligence (solicitors), competition claims, claims for breach of statutory duty, sponsorship and other sports-related agreements; breach of confidence, privacy and data protection.



Resolving Business Disputes: How to get better outcomes from commercial conflicts (Spiramus Press, 2020). This book explains in brief the various pathways to a binding decision under English law and the routes for a negotiated dispute outcome. It also deals with negotiation techniques and explains how businesses can make better-informed decisions on whether to litigate/arbitrate and/or settle disputes. 


Previous History


1980 – 1981 Passed Bar Finals exams and called to the English Bar.

1979 – 1980 Diploma in Law, City University.

1976 – 1979 Magdalene College, Cambridge; M.A Foreign Languages (French and German).

Interests include a wide variety of sporting activities, history/international relations and membership of the Royal Geographical Society.

May 2022




For more information or to discuss Stephen's availability or fees please contact Martin Poulter, Clerk to Chambers on +44 (0)20 3514 9020 or by email

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