France > Project finance and energy > Project finance
Index of tables
Other recommended firms
Bertrand Andriani –
- Christophe Asselineau – Shearman & Sterling LLP
Stéphane Brabant –
Herbert Smith Freehills LLP
- John Crothers – Gide Loyrette Nouel A.A.R.P.I.
Nikolaï Eatwell –
Anthony Giustini –
- François Krotoff – Gide Loyrette Nouel A.A.R.P.I.
Tim Scales –
Allen & Overy LLP
Nicholas Wong –
- Bertrand Andriani –
Allen & Overy LLP produces ‘high-quality work’, and shows ‘excellent knowledge of market practises in the nuclear and project financing fields’. The firm handles large energy projects in France and across Europe, and ranks among ‘the most competent advisers for work in Africa’. It is notably assisting TAQA and JLEC on the financing and development of the 700MW expansion of Jorf Lasfar power plant in Morocco. This ‘inspiring’ team is jointly headed by Tim Scales, who is praised for his technical and negotiating skills, and energy expert Alexandre Ancel. Other key team members include Rod Cork, Adrian Mellor, the ‘technician’ Christine Poyer-Rufenacht, and Shaun Beaton, who has ‘an excellent combination of legal and engineering background with real and valuable experience on nuclear matters’.
Clifford Chance is ranked by many as the ‘best legal adviser for French project finance work’ and provides the ‘best tailor-made solutions’. Public law expert David Préat is highly regarded, and Daniel Zerbib is ‘extremely good’. The international practice advises sponsors, lenders and state entities, and is ‘very qualified to advise the financial players on the world’s largest and most complex financings’. The team is recognised for its leading Africa practice and also earns high-profile assignments in Asia and the Middle East. It advised BNP Paribas and Société Générale on the financing of a large integrated steel project in Bahrain. Anthony Giustini heads the international team along with the ‘very bright’ Nikolaï Eatwell and Nicholas Wong, who is one of ‘the world’s leading project finance lawyers’.
Gide Loyrette Nouel A.A.R.P.I. has a strong international project finance practice under François Krotoff, John Crothers, Rupert Reece and Stéphane Vernay. The firm advises sponsors and governments on regulatory matters and legislative reform, and handles major infrastructure, industrial, mining and energy projects in Africa, Eastern Europe and increasingly in Asia. It advised Total Petrochemicals on an innovative coal-to-olefin project in Mongolia. The firm also advises major oil and gas corporations and renewable energy companies on contentious and non-contentious matters. Michel Guénaire notably represented the electricity distribution network operator in proceedings launched by solar and wind energy producers in France. Thomas Courtel and Bénédicte Mazel are prominent advisers to sponsors on major projects in France.
Herbert Smith Freehills LLP is the go-to firm for large projects in Africa, where the firm has extensive experience. The practice handles key matters in the oil and gas, natural resources and infrastructure sectors, and it advised Rio Tinto on the integrated Simandou iron ore project. The firm is also playing a key role in international rail projects such as the Moscow-St Petersburg and Cotonou-Parakou lines. Infrastructure and renewables projects in France are another growing area for the practice. Stéphane Brabant heads the firm’s global Africa and mining practices. Bertrand Montembault, Mehdi Haroun, Nina Bowyer, Christophe Lefort are also key project partners, and Jacques Bertran de Balanda, Régis Oreal and Eric Fiszelson are recommended on the finance side.
Linklaters LLP is ‘one of the top firms’ for large projects in France and is advising the potential lenders to a Bouygues-led consortium on the Nîmes-Montpellier high-speed rail project. Energy and renewables have become a key area of growth for the firm, which combines project, regulatory and litigation expertise. The practice is increasingly acting for Asian and African clients on large renewable energy and power projects in North Africa. It advised the lenders on the financing of the Jorf Lasfar coal-fired power plant expansion. Mining and nuclear energy are other fields of expertise. Project finance experts Bertrand Andriani and François April are recommended, as is Paul Lignières for regulatory and public law issues. Simon Ratledge joined Simmons & Simmons LLP.
Orrick Rambaud Martel’s excellent domestic projects practice is notably advising sponsors and the French state on several large transport projects. Traditional and renewable energy are also a focus for the team, which is also increasingly attracting instructions pertaining to strategic mining and energy projects in Africa. It is advising the Democratic Republic of Congo on the 3,500MW Inga III hydropower project and acting for African Development Bank on several matters. Senior counsel Noël Chahid-Nouraï is a frequent reference for projects in France, and Yves Lepage and finance expert Pascal Agboyibor are also recommended.
Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP has a ‘remarkable’ domestic project practice, mainly thanks to the very successful duo of finance expert Amir Jahanguiri and Thierry Laloum, who is ‘one of the best advisers’ for public law matters. The team is handling high-profile instructions in the transport and sports infrastructure sectors, including advising the sponsors on the Nîmes-Montpellier bypass rail project. Other clients include European Investment Bank, Vinci Concessions and Bouygues Travaux Publics. The firm is also handling work in the energy sector matters and a project in the Maghreb region.
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP is a strong adviser for major energy and mining projects in Africa. Jean-Pierre Vignaud, Barthélemy Faye and Gamal Abouali head the team, which advises sponsors, project companies and governments on high-profile hydroelectric and oil and gas developments. It is advising the Gambia River Basin Organisation on the construction of a hydroelectric dam project and acted for the Iraqi Oil Ministry on the creation of the Basrah Gas Company joint venture.
Dentons’ ‘extremely professional’ practice has ‘in-depth knowledge of the French infrastructure market’. It advises lenders and sponsors on major infrastructure projects, especially in the property construction and transport sectors, and is assisting the lenders on the construction of the new Paris Courthouse. The team comprises public law expert Marc Fornacciari and finance specialist Jean-Marc Allix, who is ‘a really meticulous and pragmatic professional able to work on innovative solutions’.
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP’s Pascal Cuche and Marc Lordonnois are leading advisers on large projects in France, and the firm is particularly busy with sponsor-side transport and construction mandates. The team advised Vinci with its bid for the North Seine Canal project. Other clients include Bouygues Construction and Eiffage. Hervé Touraine and Dougall Molson are recommended for financing work, and have notable expertise in project bonds.
Hogan Lovells (Paris) LLP handles sponsor-side instructions on large projects in France, and is also increasingly involved in projects in Africa, where it has ‘very good knowledge and experience’. The team is advising African Development Bank, Islamic Development Bank and Agence Française de Développement on the financing of the construction of Dakar’s new international airport. The team also advises on energy and renewables projects for sponsors and lenders. Practice head Bruno Cantier and Ludovic Babin are recommended, as is finance expert Olivier Fille-Lambie, who has ‘in-depth knowledge of Francophone Africa and OHADA law’.
Shearman & Sterling LLP is advising sponsors on several of the most ambitious mining, power, and oil and gas projects in Africa. The practice is acting for Sundance Resources on the Mbalam Nabeba integrated iron ore mine rail and port project, and advising AES on the Dibamba gas-fired power plant in Cameroon. Christophe Asselineau has extensive experience managing large projects, and Pierre-Nicolas Ferrand expertly advises lenders on energy projects in France.
White & Case LLP is highly regarded for its advice to lenders on projects in France, including the Sud Europe-Atlantique high-speed rail project. The practice is also increasingly involved in infrastructure and construction developments in Africa, including the Abidjan toll bridge project. Paule Biensan heads the practice, which also includes Jacques Bouillon, as well as finance experts Victoria Westcott and Louise Mor.