Latham & Watkins’ Philippines Practice had another strong year in 2021. The firm advised on a number of high-profile transactions — including ground-breaking transactions — and three award-winning deals.
The firm had a hand in several innovative deals involving leading Philippine companies across myriad industries — including aviation, fintech, telecommunications, power, and real estate. Some of the most significant transactions included Cebu Pacific Air, Inc.’s (Cebu Pacific) fund-raising, Synergy Grid and Development Philippines, Inc.’s initial public offering (IPO), and a funding round for Mynt — the Philippines’ only unicorn — as well as advising on three of the four real estate investment trust (REIT) IPOs in the country in 2021, which were spurred by the passage of new rules in 2020.
The 2021 Asian Legal Business Philippine Law Awards — which celebrate “the outstanding work done by private practitioners and in-house teams across the Philippines and the region” — honored three deals on which Latham advised: M&A Deal of the Year for GIC Private Limited’s investment in AC Energy Philippines; Debt Market Deal of the Year for SMC Global Power Holdings Corporation’s issuance of senior perpetual capital securities; and Equity Market Deal of the Year for Converge Information and Communications Technology Solutions’ (Converge ICT) IPO on the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE).
The firm was also recognized in the TMT Mergers and Acquisitions awards — which honor “the biggest deals and dealmakers…in the TMT sector” — for advising on the Digital Infrastructure Deal of the Year – Asia for the Converge ICT Solutions IPO on the PSE.
Below is a snapshot of landmark deals advised on in 2021:
- The underwriters on the IPO of Filinvest REIT, listed on the PSE
- Robinson’s Land Corporation as sponsor on the IPO of RL Commercial REIT, Inc.
- Megaworld Corporation as sponsor on the IPO of MREIT, Inc.
- Synergy Grid and Development Philippines, Inc.’s (Synergy Grid) follow-on offering on the PSE; Synergy Grid controls the sole operator of the power transmission network in the Philippines and is one of the very few listed power transmission companies globally
- The bank syndicate on the issuance by Petron Corporation of US$550 million senior perpetual capital securities
- The underwriting syndicate on the issuance by Globe Telecom, Inc. of US$600 million senior perpetual capital securities
Acquisitions and Investments
- Cebu Pacific in its successful fund raising of US$250 million in convertible bonds from the International Finance Corporation, the IFC Emerging Asia Fund, LP and Indigo Philippines LLC — an affiliate of Indigo Partners LLC; the investment is part of a wider business transformation exercise initiated by Cebu Pacific as a means of extending its liquidity runway to help the company withstand the effects of the pandemic until economic activity and travel demand recovers
- Arran Investment Pte. Ltd. — an affiliate of GIC Private Limited — on its acquisition of a 17.5% ownership stake in AC Energy Philippines
- Warburg Pincus in the US$300 series funding round for Mynt — a leading digital financial solutions provider in the Philippines and the company behind the GCash payment services app; the funding round sees Mynt valued at over US$2 billion and solidifies the company’s status as the Philippines’ only unicorn and one of the leading fintech companies in Southeast Asia
Latham & Watkins’ Philippines Practice is ranked Band 1 for Corporate & Finance and Projects, Infrastructure & Energy by Chambers Asia Pacific, and a number of its Latham lawyers are ranked and recognized for their work in the Philippines, including partners Ben Carale and Mike Yoshii; counsel Richard Fleming; and associate Diana Dizon. Other lawyers who work on significant transactions in the Philippines include partners Amy Beckingham, Marcus Lee, Sharon Lau, and James Clayton-Payne; and associates Carolyn Wong and Bing Xi Sia. Latham & Watkins advises on a full spectrum of corporate transactional and finance matters in the Philippines — from major inbound and outbound investments to landmark capital markets transactions and project financings.