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Clifford Chance leads on VW’s $9.2bn offer for remaining shares in Scania

Magic Circle giant Clifford Chance (CC) has scored a key advisory role on Volkswagen’s (VW’s) $9.2bn offer for a remaining stake in Swedish truck company Scania.

CC, a longstanding adviser to the German automobile manufacturer, is leading on the German and US legal aspects of the offer, led by Frankfurt-based M&A partner Wolfgang Richter and banking partner George Hacket. Leading Nordic firm Roschier is also advising VW on Swedish law matters.

Linklaters corporate partners Hans-Joachim Holzapfel and Stephan Oppenhoff are also reportedly working on behalf of the Wolfsburg-headquartered automaker, according to German legal publication Juve, although that statement is not corroborated by a recent press release from Volkswagen.

Linklaters previously advised Europe’s largest car maker on its $19bn takeover of German truck and bus manufacturer, MAN, in 2011.

The American Lawyer reports that Sullivan & Cromwell is representing Goldman Sachs in its role as Volkswagen’s financial adviser with a team that includes corporate partners Carsten Berrar and George Sampas as well as European counsel Markus Lauer.

At present, VW directly and indirectly holds 62.6% of the capital and 89.2% of the voting rights in Scania after a 2008 share acquisition, also led by CC.

Regarding this latest offer, VW stated: ‘Commercial vehicles is a highly attractive and important strategic business area for Volkswagen. The next logical and consistent step in the strategy of the Volkswagen Group is to strengthen the operational integration between Scania, MAN and Volkswagen to create a world-class commercial vehicles group. This will enable the members of the Volkswagen Group to fully share know-how and entirely realise synergies to deliver strong economies of scale.’

The acceptance period for the offer is expected to begin on or around 17 March and expire on or around 25 April 2014. VW has publicly stated it will not complete the offer unless it becomes the owner of more than 90% of all shares in Scania.

The announcement of the offer came as CC’s Frankfurt-based head of automotives Johannes Perlitt, a key relationship partner for VW having represented the company on its €4.7bn combination with Porsche, joined Jones Day’s corporate practice.