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Transatlantic Weil and Milbank teams advise on circa €2bn Flint acquisition; A&O launches Primark in the US

Weil, Gotshal & Manges London, German and New York banking teams have advised the lenders on Goldman Sachs and Koch Industries’ acquisition of Flint Group from CVC Capital Partners for a purchase price reported to be more than Flint’s 2013 revenue of €2.2bn, as a transatlantic Allen & Overy (A&O) team assisted Primark on its launch into the US.

The acquisition of Flint, a global supplier of inks and other print consumables, also handed out lead roles to Hengeler Mueller for CVC; Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy for Goldman Sachs; and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett on the purchasers’ debt financing.

Goldman Sachs’ merchant banking division partnered with Koch Equity Development, a subsidiary of Koch Industries, to acquire 100% of the share capital of Flint Group, which operates from 137 sites in 40 countries and employs around 6,600 people.

Weil advised the lenders to Goldman Sachs: Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley as lead arrangers, and Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and Barclays as joint bookrunners.

Weil’s multi-jurisdictional team comprised London banking partners Chris McLaughlin, Stephen Lucas and Gil Strauss, Munich banking partner Tobias Geerling and associate Wolfgang Sϋss, and New York banking partners Dan Dokos, Doug Urquhart, Morgan Bale and Danek Freeman.

German firm Hengeler Mueller meanwhile advised London-headquartered CVC with a team out of Munich and London led by corporate and M&A partners Hans-Jörg Ziegenhain and Steffen Oppenländer respectively.

Also advising are Düsseldorf-based partners Thorsten Mäger and Dirk Uwer on antitrust and regulatory issues, while Frankfurt-based partner Alexander Rang along with counsel Axel Gehringer advised on finance issues.

Milbank also formed a tripartite German, London and New York team for Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking, led by Munich-based corporate partners Peter Nussbaum and Michael Pujol, New York corporate partner John Franchini, and Frankfurt-based partners Andrea Eggenstein and Rainer Magold who advised on corporate and banking and finance issues respectively.

London partners Stuart Harray and Suhrud Mehta are advising on corporate and leveraged finance issues respectively.

Also advising are Munich-based competition partner Alexander Rinne, tax partner Dale Ponikvar and investment law partner Eric Moser, both based in New York.

A Simpson Thacher team led by Jennifer Hobbs is representing Goldman Sachs and Koch on the deal’s debt financing.

Elsewhere, A&O represented Primark on the budget clothes retailer’s entry into the US with the launch of a 70,000 sq-ft flagship store in Boston, which will open towards the end of 2015.

A&O global corporate chairman Richard Cranfield advised the Associated British Foods (ABF) subsidiary on the UK aspects of the deal, while a team in the US was led by real estate partner Kevin O’Shea and real estate senior counsel Alan Schacter, assisted by corporate partner Eric Shube.

Shube has previously advised ABF on the private placement of a series of multimillion-dollar senior notes as well as ABF North America Holdings on the sale of food ingredients business of SPI Polyols to Corn Products International in 2007.