Regulatory work: Cadwalader and Cleary face off over Ryanair/Aer Lingus, while Links and HSF advise on PPI compensation pot

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In a move being watched with interest by M&A lawyers and competition experts throughout Europe, the Competition Commission (CC) has today (28 August) dealt another blow to Ryanair’s long-held ambitions to buy Aer Lingus by ordering the airline to sell the majority of its 30% stake held in its rival, ruling that the minority stake could allow it to materially influence Aer Lingus in a way that may be anti-competitive.

However, Ryanair has wasted no time in saying it will appeal against the decision, described by Ryanair chief executive Michael O’Leary to the BBC as ‘bizarre and manifestly wrong’. This will meaning more work for Ryanair’s seasoned advisors, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, led by competition partner Nicholas Levy.

Continue reading “Regulatory work: Cadwalader and Cleary face off over Ryanair/Aer Lingus, while Links and HSF advise on PPI compensation pot”

Deal Watch: Dentons & King & Spalding act on HR Owen hostile takeover bid as Freshfields and Skadden secure Asian M&A roles

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While the traditional August lull in corporate work may have seen Asia relax, the giant is far from asleep and has gifted a number of transatlantic and Magic Circle firms with eye-catching international M&A deals.

Dentons led by corporate partner Jeremy Cohen is advising luxury car dealer HR Owen on the £32.5m hostile takeover bid by Malaysian billionaire Vincent Tan’s Berjaya Philippines, which HR Owen last week rejected as ‘derisory’. Continue reading “Deal Watch: Dentons & King & Spalding act on HR Owen hostile takeover bid as Freshfields and Skadden secure Asian M&A roles”

Deal watch: Latham and Wachtell lead on largest public deal of the year

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In what remains a gloomy cross-border deal market, US leaders Latham & Watkins and Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz have secured lead roles on the largest public merger of the year so far – the tie-up of Omnicom and Publicis Groupe. The Franco-US union creates a company with a combined market capitalisation of €26.5bn, forging the largest advertising group in the world. The combined company, which will be listed in New York and Paris, will have more than 130,000 staff.

The deal is likely to attract the attention of antitrust regulators in the US and Europe, uniting the second and third largest advertising groups in the world to overtake the UK-based WPP. Continue reading “Deal watch: Latham and Wachtell lead on largest public deal of the year”

Deal watch: M&A activity picks up as A&O, Linklaters and Hogan Lovells secure key roles

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With Q1 2013 reported as one of the slowest starts to the year M&A-wise for a decade, the deal market appears to be gaining momentum with a handful of Global 100 firms in action in high-profile and high-value transactions recently.

Linklaters is advising the recently formed Glencore Xstrata on the disposal of its Las Bambas copper mine in Peru for around $5bn – a condition of the $64bn union between Glencore and Xstrata that was imposed by Chinese regulators. Continue reading “Deal watch: M&A activity picks up as A&O, Linklaters and Hogan Lovells secure key roles”

Deal Watch: sporting metaphor alert as Dechert, HSF and DLA Piper score high-profile football roles

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The balance sheets of most English clubs may be shakier than Villa’s back four, but when it comes to raising your deal-doers’ profile there’s still nothing like acting for major football teams.

Among the advisers getting off the bench (sorry) are Dechert, Herbert Smith Freehills (HSF) and Squire Sanders on the sale of Fulham Football Club while DLA Piper is working on the £260m regeneration of Liverpool’s Anfield ground. Continue reading “Deal Watch: sporting metaphor alert as Dechert, HSF and DLA Piper score high-profile football roles”

Deal Watch: Slaughters, Dentons, Taylor Wessing and Nabarro act on high profile European deals

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Europe and particularly the UK has thrown up a number of high profile mandates from the nationally significant restructuring of UK Coal through to the solid £500m private equity buyout of Chesapeake by the Carlyle Group.

Nabarro has led for UK Coal on the corporate, insolvency and pension elements of a second restructuring following a devastating fire at the company’s Daw Mill in February. The company accounts for 5% of the UK’s energy needs and as a result of the restructuring over 2,000 jobs and the pensions of 7,000 members have been protected. Continue reading “Deal Watch: Slaughters, Dentons, Taylor Wessing and Nabarro act on high profile European deals”

Deal watch: CMS, Matheson and Akin Gump act on high-profile international deals

As international M&A catches the headlines, CMS Cameron McKenna has advised a consortium owned by Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing on a HK$9.7 billion dollar acquisition of the Netherlands’ largest waste management group AVR Afvalverwerking.

CMS London corporate partner Charles Currier and Amsterdam partners Martika Jonk and Cecilia van der Weijden led the multi-disciplinary team advising Cheung Kong Infrastructure Consortium (CKI). Last year CKI acquired MGN Gas Networks for $1bn, also advised by CMS. Continue reading “Deal watch: CMS, Matheson and Akin Gump act on high-profile international deals”

Deal Watch: Clutch of US firms including Skadden, Cleary and Kirkland secure high value corporate mandates

After the slowest opening M&A quarter for a decade the past week saw signs of the forecasted uptick in M&A activity as a clutch of US firms including Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, Kirkland & Ellis and Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton secured high value mandates.

In what is said to be the largest Chinese takeover of a US company, Hong Kong-based meat processing giant Shuanghui International Holdings has acquired the world’s largest pork processor, Smithfield Foods, in a deal worth $4.7bn, or $7.1bn including assumed debt. US Paul Hastings led by Hong Kong-based partner Raymond Li advised the buyer alongside LB Global 100 US firm Troutman Sanders, led by corporate partners Mason Bayler, David Myers and Coburn Beck. Smithfield Foods was advised by Simpson Thacher & Bartlett led by M&A partners Robert Spatt and Patrick Noughton and McGuireWoods led by corporate partners David Oakey and James Anderson.

Continue reading “Deal Watch: Clutch of US firms including Skadden, Cleary and Kirkland secure high value corporate mandates”

Deal Watch: Nabarro and Ashurst act on sale of LSE HQ as King & Spalding secures repeat European M&A for GSK

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Ashurst and Nabarro‘s real estate teams have secured a role on the sale of another landmark London building, while King & Spalding has furthered its transatlantic ambitions by closing a sizeable European M&A pharma deal.

In the £225m sale of 10 Paternoster Square, home of the London Stock Exchange (LSE), Nabarro advised the seller, Tokyo-headquartered Mitsubishi Estate Company (MEC), led by rated real estate partner Deborah Parry. Continue reading “Deal Watch: Nabarro and Ashurst act on sale of LSE HQ as King & Spalding secures repeat European M&A for GSK”

Deal Watch: Magic Circle advises on headline debt deals as re-financing work keep advisers busy

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In a dire market for new money M&A, debt restructuring continues to be a lifeline for major advisers with Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Linklaters and Kirkland & Ellis securing major mandates in recent days.

The standout mandate of May was the €4.2bn debt restructuring of German real estate group IVG Immobilien, which has generated lead roles for Freshfields and Linklaters alongside US duo Kirkland and Kaye Scholer. Continue reading “Deal Watch: Magic Circle advises on headline debt deals as re-financing work keep advisers busy”