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Dealwatch: City players drill down on Siccar Point Energy sale as US elite act on IFS and WorkWave deal

Significant deals in the pharmaceutical, energy and software space have got the market talking over the last week, as City and US giants scored major mandates.

Ithaca Energy is acquiring Siccar Point Energy, best known for operating the Cambo oil and gas field in the North Sea, for $1.5bn. The buyer will pay $1.1bn up front, with the potential for $360m of additional payments dependent on future developments and commodity prices.

The transaction is intended to increase Ithaca’s daily production levels ahead of its IPO, penciled in for later in the year. The takeover is expected to boost Ithaca’s production by up to 9,500 barrels of oil equivalent per day.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer advised Siccar Point as the seller, as well as its sponsors, Blackstone Energy Partners and Blue Water Energy. Partners James Scott and Graham Watson led the deal team alongside partner-elect Alon Gordon.

Ithaca Energy was represented by Pinsent Masons. Global oil & gas head Rosalie Chadwick led a cross-practice team that also included partners Michael Smith and Giles Warrington. The acquisition is the latest in a string of deals the firm has handled for the company in recent years, having also worked on its $2bn acquisition of Chevron North Sea Limited.

Elsewhere, a collection of Global London firms advised on Hg’s investment in IFS and WorkWave. The transaction, which saw the New York-bred private equity house become a significant minority shareholder, values IFS and WorkWave at $10bn. EQT remains the majority shareholder.

Headquartered in Sweden, IFS produces cloud software programmes relating to the distribution of goods, while WorkWave’s suite of products provide cloud-based software solutions to businesses.

Latham & Watkins advised TA Associates as the seller. London corporate partner Paul Dolman led the deal team, while Nicola Higgs provided regulatory advice.

Hg was represented by Skadden, with London duo Richard Youle and Katja Butler leading the team.

IFS and its shareholders, including EQT, were advised by an international team from White & Case. Led from Stockholm by Patrik Erblad, the deal team included partners from the London, Frankfurt, Düsseldorf, Brussels and Luxembourg offices. Kirkland & Ellis, led by partners Roger Johnson and Aneeq Durrani, assisted WorkWave.

Speaking to Legal Business Erblad said: ‘We were acting as advisers to the company and its shareholders, including EQT, Skadden was advising Hg on the buyer side. We also had Latham advising TA. So, it was a lot of US firms. I think that’s really what was required; for everyone to come together to get this deal done to a tight timetable.

‘What we have seen in the last month is that software and tech has been very hot. There is a lot of interest around the real quality assets. The companies that show consistent growth and are delivering profit are in high demand among private equity companies.’

Finally, Allen & Overy, Latham & Watkins and Linklaters acted on the $1.2bn acquisition of Theramex by private equity giants PAI Partners and Carlyle from CVC.

Initially created through a carve out of a group of women’s health pharmaceuticals, Theramex has grown into a premier pharmaceutical company specialising in women’s health.

Linklaters advised Carlyle and PAI Partners as acquirers. Private equity partners Alex Woodward and Chris Boycott led the deal team, which also included tax counsel Jamie Coomber, employment specialist Sinead Casey, IP lawyer Yohan Liyanage and TMT partner Marly Didizian. Adam Zecharia and Robin Harvey spearheaded a team from A&O that handled the financing aspects.

CVC Capital Partners and Theramex were represented by Latham, which also advised on the formation of the original Theramex Group in 2018. London duo Robbie McLaren and Linzi Thomas led on the corporate aspects of the deal, while Gail Crawford Fergus O’Domhnaill handled tech and finance respectively. Eveline Van Keymeulen provided regulatory advice from Paris.

Taylor Wessing advised the Theramex management team. Head of private equity Emma Danks was the lead partner.