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Who Represents Who

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A ‘key player in major corporate deals’, Bruchou, Fernández Madero & Lombardi distinguishes itself through its ‘high-level expertise and sophistication’ and its ‘practical and commercially-minded lawyers’. The group’s broad sectoral expertise is evidenced by a diverse client roster, which encompasses major national and multinational companies from the agribusiness (Cargill, Monsanto), energy and natural resources (Barrick Gold, Envision Energy) and food and beverage (Arcor and Oceano Seafood) sectors. It also shines in TMT and infrastructure deals. Senior partner Enrique Bruchou is a ‘go-to specialist for complex transactions’ and recently led the firm’s advice to Arcor and Bagley on its $35m capital injection in Mastellone Hermanos. Mariano Luchetti, who has a ‘business-focused approach to solving problems’, advised key client Arcor on its $227.5m acquisition of Grupo Zucamor. Javier Rodríguez Galli is highly sought after for energy-related transactions and is advising Gazprom EP International on a potential joint venture with YPF. Estanislao Olmos is noted for his ‘strong analytical skills’ and assisted Culligan Argentina with its acquisition of certain assets (and assumption of associated liabilities) from Nestlé Waters Argentina. Other key names are managing partner Carlos Lombardi and the newly made-up Exequiel Buenaventura. Aixa Sureda and senior associate Evangelina González Soldo left to join Mitrani Caballero & Ruiz Moreno Abogados.

A ‘stand out firm for sophisticated M&A’, Marval, O'Farrell & Mairal is also a popular choice for joint ventures, equity capital markets and corporate restructurings. The ‘corporate powerhouse’ continues to win a significant share of cross-border transactions and is often the first port of call for major multinational clients doing business in Argentina. In a case in point, Pablo García Morillo advised The Brinks Company on the acquisition by Brink’s Argentina of MACO Transportadora de Caudales. In a further example of its cross-border prowess, Pablo Artagaveytia acted for Brazilian food giant JBS on the $300m sale of JBS in Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay to companies controlled by Minerva. The firm also acts for leading domestic corporations and Loma Negra turned to the firm for support on its $1bn international IPO ¬¬– Fernando Hernández and Hernán Slemenson led that work. In other headline mandates, senior corporate specialists Héctor Mairal and Santiago Carregal paired up to advise BP on a joint venture with Bridas and China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) to form a new integrated energy company, Pan American Energy Group. Other recommended names include ‘heavyweight M&A star’ Pablo Viñals Blake, who acted for Sibanye on the local aspects of its $2.2bn acquisition of Stillwater Mining, Alfredo O’Farrell and Diego Krischcautzky.

Beccar Varela’s ‘responsive and reliable team’, led jointly by Roberto Crouzel and Roberto Fortunati, is lauded for ‘going above-and-beyond for clients’. The increasingly prominent corporate practice garnered a significant share of headline transactions over the past year, with its advice to Minerva on its $300m acquisition of JBS in Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay standing out as a highlight – the ‘very knowledgeable’ Horacio Beccar Varela paired up with ‘very professional’ junior partner Casiana Silveyra Perdriel to lead that work. The same team also acted for Black Bamboo Enterprises on its $69m acquisition of four slaughterhouses and refrigeration facilities from Marfrig Argentina and Estancias del Sur. In a notable piece of banking M&A, Javier Magnasco and Alejandro Poletto acted together to advise Deutsche Bank on the sale of its business in Argentina to Banco Comafi. The group also draws upon the senior experience of Ramón Moyano (‘extremely smart’) and María Shakespear (‘well-informed and great to deal with’), while impressive associates include María Eugenia Radaelli.

Mitrani Caballero & Ruiz Moreno Abogados’ satisfied clients assert that the firm ‘consistently produces phenomenal work’ and that it provides a ‘holistically multidisciplinary approach to complex issues’. Pre-eminent sector specialist Cristian Mitrani ‘presents a leading standard to the market’ and recently advised Cromology on the sale of a controlling stake in Colorín. Diego Parise, who jointly heads the department alongside Mitrani, demonstrates ‘very sophisticated knowledge of the local context’; he led the firm’s advice to Ternium (as local counsel and global coordinator) on its €1.4bn acquisition of thyssenkrupp Slab International and its wholly owned Brazilian subsidiary, CSA Siderúrgica do Atlântico. Parise also advised Brazil’s Raízen Combustíveis, and its Argentine subsidiary Raízen Argentina Holdings, on its $950m acquisition of Shell’s downstream business in Argentina. The ‘diligent and highly responsive’ group also includes Julio Martínez and new arrival Cristian Krüger, who joined in 2017 from Pérez Alati, Grondona, Benites, Arntsen & Martínez De Hoz, Jr. In July 2018, the firm significantly bolstered its corporate and competition capability with three new hires: Siro Astolfi arrived from Aerolíneas Argentinas, where he was general counsel, while Aixa Sureda and senior associate Evangelina González Soldo joined from Bruchou, Fernández Madero & Lombardi.

‘Knowledgeable and experienced’ Pérez Alati, Grondona, Benites & Arntsen fields a ‘very strong corporate practice’; certainly, the firm’s impressive band of high-profile senior partners and its longstanding reputation as a key player in Argentina’s M&A environment should help to insulate it from the worst effects of its recent partnership split. Founding partner Jorge Perez Alati is a stalwart in the M&A area and maintains an active practice. The ‘extremely commercial and strategic’ Santiago Daireaux is also a prominent figure and led on several of the department’s deals over the past year, such as advising Victoria Capital Partners on its $230m acquisition of Los Grobo and also assisting A Priori Capital with the $180m sale of a controlling stake in Grupo Zucamor to Arcor. Elsewhere, corporate finance partner Diego Serrano Redonnet advised Genneia on its $40m acquisition of Loma Blanca IV. Mariano Grondona and Pedro Eugenio Aramburu are also key contacts. Notable departures include Federico Wilensky, who left for an in-house role at TGLT, while José Alfredo Martínez de Hoz Jr, Fernando Zoppi and José Martínez de Hoz (n) left to establish new firm Martínez de Hoz & Rueda.

The ‘fantastically responsive’ group at Salaverri, Burgio & Wetzler Malbran ‘excels in all respects’, say sources who also highlight its ‘strong business acumen’ and ‘great value for money’. Diego Salaverri ‘combines experience with great pragmatism’ and heads a ‘entrepreneurial and forward-looking’ corporate practice, which packs a punch in M&A, private equity, capital markets and corporate restructuring. Tomás Arnaude – an ‘outstanding lawyer, with great drafting skills and business sense’ – led on the firm’s most high-profile deal of 2017, when he advised Arca Continental on its $2.7bn acquisition of Coca-Cola’s bottling business in the US Southwest, as well as on its joint venture with Coca-Cola to operate all of Arca Continental’s beverage businesses in Latin America. Among the team’s other highlights, Martin Fernandez Dussaut advised Central Térmica Loma de la Lata, a subsidiary of Pampa Energía, on is joint venture with an investment vehicle of Castlelake for the construction of a 100-megawatt wind farm. Former name partner Santiago Dellatorre left for an in-house role at OP Investment, while Elena Sozzani joined from Bruchou, Fernández Madero & Lombardi.

Allende & Brea’s managing partner Valeriano Guevara Lynch is the key contact for corporate work and recently advised Sapphire Systems on its acquisition of certain IT-related assets from Argentis Consulting. The firm’s top-tier insurance practice ensures a steady stream of corporate instructions in that space and Jorge Mayora and newly promoted partner Marcos Patrón Costas teamed up with the insurance and antitrust departments to advise Fairfax on the local aspects of its $240m acquisition of AIG’s insurance businesses in Argentina, Chile, Columbia, Uruguay and Venezuela – the team also coordinated the M&A process for Latin America.

Baker McKenzie’s ‘holistic perspective’, ‘deep M&A experience’ and ‘strong organisational skills’ are key attributes for clients who highlight the group’s ‘great ability to solve complex problems’. Led by office managing partner Gustavo Boruchowicz, the practice also draws upon the experience of Roberto Grané, who ‘gets deeply involved in all parts of transaction’, and transactional energy specialist Adolfo Durañona. Recent highlights included advising Unilever on the $575m sale of its soy-based AdeS drinks business to Coca-Cola and assisting the shareholders of Cevasa on the $20.5m sale of their equity participation in Cevasa.

Errecondo, González & Funes’ private equity expertise is the hallmark of its corporate finance practice and it is regularly called upon by private equity funds, and other institutional investors, for assistance on M&A deals, investment structuring and joint venture transactions. Cross-border work is also a strength and the firm’s New York office translates into a steady flow of multi-jurisdictional deals, particularly on the capital markets side. Among its recent work, the team advised Telecom Argentina on its merger with cable TV provider Cablevisión. Javier Errecondo is the key contact.

M & M Bomchil garners rave reviews for its ‘strong business understanding’, ‘tremendous response times’ and ‘in-depth legal knowledge’. The practice, which is led jointly by Marcelo Bombau and Javier Petrantonio, handles the full spread of M&A and corporate matters, with strong showings, recently, in the TMT, food-and-beverage and energy-and-natural-resources sectors. Highlights included advising Mosaic on the local aspects of its multi-jurisdictional acquisition of Vale’s fertiliser business. Other recommended names include Adrián Furman (‘strong expertise, accessibility and creativity’), Tomás Araya (‘provides legal advice framed within a business context’) and Laura Lavia Haidempergher.

Martínez de Hoz & Rueda’s corporate team has robust experience in the energy, agribusiness, infrastructure and private equity spheres and its capability spans M&A, corporate finance, private equity and restructuring. In a headline transaction, José Alfredo Martínez de Hoz Jr advised Trafigura Group on its $145m acquisition of the majority of Pampa Energía’s downstream business. Pablo Rueda is also recommended for transactional energy matters, while other names to note include Fernando Zoppi and José Martínez de Hoz (n).

The ‘resourceful team’ at Estudio O'Farrell is commended for ‘taking the time to understand the client’s business’. The group is particularly recognised for its strong profile in energy matters (largely due to the firm’s close relationship with YPF), but it is also routinely involved in deals in the agribusiness and infrastructure areas. Recent work saw practice co-heads Ricardo Castañeda and Uriel O´Farrell pair-up to advise YPF and YPF Energía Electrica on a $275m subscription agreement with EFS Global Energy and GE Capital Global Energy Investments. The team also includes Ernesto Genco, who has a ‘great business mind’.

Bulló Abogados has a well-established reputation for its corporate work in the insurance field – in line with the firm’s top-tier practice in that area – but it also deserves recognition for a strong record in the broader financial services sector generally, where it advises a diverse portfolio of banks and institutional investors. Recent matters saw the team advise Mapfre Reinsurance on the sale of a portion of its insurance business to Grupo Sura. Well regarded, Gustavo Torassa is the key contract, but Francisco Roggero departed for Zang, Bergel & Viñes Abogados in June 2018.

Estudio Garrido Abogados’s recent corporate highlights include advising Alianza Petrolera Argentina on its $54m acquisition of an 11% stake in the Llancanelo oil field from YPF. Managing partner Gustavo Garrido heads a group that also counts Hicks Trans American Partners, Patagonia Oil and Aqua Capital as clients.

Hope, Duggan & Silva’s ‘supremely valuable’ team is comprised of ‘specialised, timely and clear lawyers’. Juan Duggan is a ‘known expert in his field’ and the group also includes the ‘professional, client-oriented and utterly dependable’ Rufino Arce. Recent work includes advising Interbrand Corporation on the sale of its 49% equity interest in Interbrand Argentina to the majority shareholder

Over the past year, Zang, Bergel & Viñes Abogados kept busy advising on a string of M&A, private investment and corporate finance matters, with strong activity in the real estate, financial services and TMT spheres. Department head Pablo Vergara del Carril recently advised BAF Capital on numerous matters, including on several private equity projects. As we close this edition the firm has announced the arrival of Francisco Roggero, formerly of Bulló Abogados, to establish a restructuring, insolvency and distressed M&A department.

Alfaro-Abogados’ New York and Beijing desks spur a significant stream of cross-border corporate matters, particularly for energy industry clients such as Sinopec, Sinohydro and Parker Drilling. Highlights included advising Spain-based Soltec Energías Renovables on establishing an Argentine subsidiary. Carlos Alfaro heads the department.

At Allende & Ferrante, key contact Lisandro Allende is recommended for his robust track record in M&A, foreign investment and restructuring matters. The firm advised Telefónica on the local aspects of the $345m sale of Telefe to Viacom.

Beretta Godoy’s corporate team, which is led by managing partner Federico Godoy, is well known for its expertise in mining and infrastructure matters. Recent work includes advising Barranca Sur Minera on filings to acquire final title to two coal mines.

In a key highlight, Brons & Salas advised Shandong Gold Mining (Hong Kong) on the local aspects of its $952m acquisition of a 50% interest in Minera Argentina Gold. Guillermo Malm Green, who led the Shandong Gold deal, and Mariano del Olmo co-head the practice.

‘Responsive, available and strategic’, Cerolini & Ferrari Abogados provides ‘excellent and knowledgeable service’, say sources. In particular, department head Agustín Luis Cerolini is ‘extremely knowledge, especially on corporate compliance matters’. One recent mandate saw Cerolini advising US-based QuanticMind on its incorporation of a local subsidiary.

Lawyers at Córdova Francos Abogados ‘really get involved with the client’ and ‘understand the business implications of transactions’. Sebastián Córdova-Moyano is the key contact; he recently led advice to ICAP Group on the local aspects of the global sale of its hybrid voice-broking business to Tullett Prebon. The group also includes Guillermo Francos, who ‘provides practical and sophisticated legal solutions’.

Traditionally better known for its finance practice Nicholson y Cano Abogados also houses a capable corporate department, which routinely advises on company incorporations, M&A, equity capital markets, joint ventures and restructurings. Recent highlights include advising San Miguel on its AR$706m public share offering. Santiago Nicholson and Naldo Dasso are the key contacts.

Boutique firm Salaberren & Lopez Sanson (SyLS) acts for a strong stable of energy, technology, food and agribusiness clients, which it advises on a wide range of M&A and corporate finance transactions. Among its recent mandates, the team advised Coca-Cola on structuring a joint venture for the acquisition of the AdeS soy-based drinks business in South America. Founding partner Rafael Salaberren is recommended.

Severgnini, Robiola, Grinberg & Tombeur’s corporate practice is particularly prominent in deals in the energy and infrastructure sectors but it also has significant expertise in financial services, TMT and agribusiness transactions. Representative clients include Empresa Nacional de Petróleo, Shree Renuka Energy and Energy Vestas Argentina. Carlos Tombeur is the key contact.

Wiener Soto Caparrós’ ability to ‘clearly articulate the issues’ and ‘present pragmatic solutions’ are big draws for clients, who also highlight group co-head Laurence Wiener for his ‘unparalleled levels of service’. Mariela del Carmen Caparrós, who has ‘very strong technical skills’, is also a key contact. Representative clients include Coca-Cola Andina, McCain Foods and RPM International.

Estudio Ymaz Abogados’s firmwide focus on the construction and infrastructure sector ensures it is a ‘top choice for construction companies looking for advice on corporate, administrative or regulatory law’. Department head Pilar Ymaz Videla has ‘deep and broad understanding of corporate law’ and recently assisted Suministros de Comercio Exterior with the liquidation of its Argentine branch and exit from the country.

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