Francesco Lione, a partner in the London office of Latham & Watkins, represents clients in acquisition financings, high yield offerings, hybrid capital raisings, liability management, and restructuring matters under both US law and English law.
Mr. Lione has advised entrepreneurs, sponsors, and companies on transformative, strategic financings, such as the largest sterling corporate bond sale on record, the third largest LBO financing in the UK, the largest private debt financing of an Italian LBO, debut capital markets transactions, and inaugural green bond issuances. He has also counselled investment banks on complex, groundbreaking deals, such as the first European LBO financing featuring pari passu bonds and loans, the first instance of a European business funding its supply chain finance program through the high yield bond market, the second largest offshore bond offering by a Japanese issuer, and the second largest LBO financing in the UK. Mr. Lione has assisted direct lenders and investment firms with a wide array of bespoke capital raisings, spanning Holdo PIK issuances, convertible debt placements, and pre-IPO financings. Lastly, he has represented creditors and borrowers in several balance sheet restructurings of cross-border businesses.
Working closely with issuers and borrowers through the ups and downs of business cycles, Mr. Lione has extended his practice to cover a broader range of transactional finance assignments — advising companies on preferred equity issuances, working capital facilities, securitization structures, club loan deals, and, more recently during the COVID-19 pandemic, emergency injections of capital and negotiated amendments of financing terms. He also regularly counsels founders, boards of directors, and senior management teams on reporting and disclosure matters, access to capital markets, financing risk management, and corporate governance.
Mr. Lione is recognized for his expertise in financing matters by Chambers UK in Capital Markets: High-Yield Products, by IFLR1000 in Banking and Finance and in Capital Markets: Debt, and by The Legal 500 UK in High Yield. He is a frequent speaker on trends and developments in leveraged finance and has published various articles on innovative transaction templates in private equity finance.