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Dealwatch: A&O, Travers Smith and Pinsent Masons lead on Lloyds’ £400m Keepmoat homebuilder sale

Allen & Overy (A&O), Travers Smith and Pinsent Masons have all secured leading roles advising on Lloyds Banking Group’s £400m sale of Doncaster-based homebuilder Keepmoat to private equity houses Sun Capital and TDR Capital, as the part-nationalised lender continues to dispose of its non-core assets.

Travers Smith private equity partner James Renahan and tax partner Russell Warren advised Keepmoat’s management on the sale, a sustainable community regeneration business with sales of nearly £1bn last year.

The deal comes as Travers Smith is set to lose its leading private equity heavyweight Phil Sanderson, who is moving to join Ropes & Gray.

A&O corporate partner George Knight led a team including corporate associates Hugh Robinson and Chloe Johnson on advising the seller. Meanwhile, Pinsent Masons’ corporate partner Helen Ridge led a team including legal director Anna Whetham and corporate finance partner Barry McCaig on advising the buy-out duo Sun Capital and TDR Capital.

The acquisition by Sun Capital, of which former PizzaExpress owner Hugh Osmond is a leading partner, and TDR Capital is ‘designed to support the long-term growth ambitions of Keepmoat and is a significant investment at the time of increased demand for new and improved homes and communities’.

Completion is expected to occur by the end of November this year and is subject to regulatory clearances.

Other windfall instructions gained by leading City firms on the government’s privatisation of Lloyds, which was rescued by the UK taxpayer in 2008, includes Magic Circle pair Slaughter and May and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer advising UK Financial Investments Limited (UKFI) on the HM Treasury’s disposal of a 6% stake in Lloyds, worth around £3.3bn, last year.