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Private equity: Weil and Freshfields act as OMERS sells V.Group to Advent

Weil, Gotshal & Manges and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer have won roles on OMERS Private Equity’s first European exit as it sells V.Group to Advent International.

The private equity arm of pension fund Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System plans to reinvest in V.Group while the company’s management team will retain a minority stake in the maritime firm. V.Group manages over 1000 vessels out of 70 international offices on behalf of its customers across commercial shipping, cruise, energy and defence sectors.

The value of the transaction was not disclosed. OMERS originally bought V.Group in 2011 for $520m, with Weil also advising on the purchase.

Weil co-head of private equity Marco Compagnoni (pictured) advised OMERS on the deal. The firm also acted for OMERS and its portfolio company DTI earlier this year on its agreement to buy Epiq Systems together with Harvest Partners for $1bn.

Travers Smith advised V.Group management on the deal with a team led by private equity partner Adam Orr.

Freshfields’ London private equity head Adrian Maguire advised Advent alongside finance partners Denise Ryan and Sean Pierce also acted on the deal. Ince & Co provided specialist maritime law advice to Advent with a team led by global head of corporate Stephen Jarvis.

Maguire also acted for Advent on its sale of the Priory to Acadia Healthcare alongside corporate partner Julian Pritchard for £1.3bn, after buying it in 2011 for £925m.

The deal comes as Maguire readies himself to become head of the firm’s global financial investors sector group taking over the role from heavyweight David Higgins. The firm’s GFI group, one of its eight sector groups, covers private equity funds, pension funds, infrastructure funds, sovereign wealth funds and alternative capital providers.

He will take over the role in January working alongside fellow co-head Markus Paul who is based in Frankfurt.

Read more: ‘ABC – the brutally simple world of a private equity lawyer’