Asian-Mena Counsel Ranks Latham & Watkins #1 for Work on Stand-Out Deals

Asian-Mena Counsel

May 05, 2014

Latham & Watkins was ranked #1 by number of winning deals in the Asian-MENA Counsel 2013 “Deals of the Year” awards. The firm advised on multiple award-winning deals, as well as six transactions which received honorable mentions.

The transactions were among Asia and the Middle East’s largest, most innovative and most complex deals to close in 2013. Latham advised on a number of landmark deals spanning M&A, capital markets, project finance, Islamic finance, and restructuring, including: 

  • Ichthys LNG Project Financing: "In one of the world’s largest ever project financings, this deal was ground-breaking for a number of reasons...The landmark project won plaudits because of its behemoth size, complexity, and the various social and economic benefits which it brought about in Australia."
  • Asiacell IPO on the Iraq Stock Exchange: "This transaction cemented its position as one of the most outstanding deals on Asian-MENA Counsel’s list for 2013 when it became the biggest initial public offering in the Middle East since 2008, setting a precedent in the capital markets sector as well in the telecommunications field. [The IPO] was regarded as one of the most complex and keenly negotiated capital markets transactions in the Middle East region."
  • TCC Assets Acquisition of Fraser & Neave: "A staggering US$11.7 billion deal” and “the biggest ever M&A deal in Southeast Asia (at the time)."
  • Al Bayan Group Holding Company’s Sukuk: "This was a landmark issuance which saw the creation of a new Malaysian Ringgit Sukuk Programme launched by a Saudi corporate issuer, and the first issuance by a Saudi corporate issuer of ringgit-denominated sukuk in the world’s leading market for sukuk."
  • Wanxiang Acquisition of A123 Systems: "This was a fascinating deal which won credit for innovation and complexity given the novel challenges the parties encountered in relation to the coordination of the bankruptcy sale process as well as the hurdles the parties had to overcome to achieve the necessary CFIUS approvals."
  • Dana Gas Sukuk Restructuring: "Winning plaudits for complexity and uniqueness, this precedent-setting deal entailed complex issues involving the underlying Islamic structure as well as the structuring of two new sukuk instruments that were issued upon completion of the deal."
  • SoftBank High Yield Bond Offering: This was "the largest ever high yield bond offering in Asia and given that it was the first Japanese companies ever to issue high yield bonds, there was very little in the way of precedents to follow." It is also expected to act as ”a roadmap for other Asian companies considering raising funds in the international debt capital markets to finance overseas acquisitions."
  • KrisEnergy Ltd IPO on Singapore Exchange: "This was one of the first deals to list under the new Mineral Oil and Gas (MOG) listing rules, this transaction was considered a pathfinder deal and won plaudits for being unique and commendation for the innovation that was needed to get it over the finish line."

Latham also advised on Melco Crown Entertainment’s high yield offering, Saudi Electricity Company’s Rule 144A Sukuk, PT Pertamina (Persero)’s GMTN Programmeand initial drawdown, Vedanta Resources’ high yield bond offering, the Shuweihat 2 IWPP Refinancing, and the Wa’ad Al Shammal Greenfield phosphate project, all of which were awarded honorable mentions.

Commenting on the firm’s success in the awards, Michael Sturrock, Vice Chair of the firm’s Global Corporate Department, who is based in Singapore, said: "2013 was yet another stellar year for the firm globally with the firm making significant strides in building its market-leading practices in Asia and the Middle East. We are proud to continue advising clients across numerous industries on such complex, highly innovative matters."

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