Germany > Banking and finance
Index of tables
Other recommended firms
- Thomas Cron – Hengeler Mueller
- Andreas Diem – Latham & Watkins LLP
Carl-Peter Feick –
Peter Hoegen –
Allen & Overy LLP
- Yorck Jetter – Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Stephan Kock –
- Annica Lindegren – Jones Day
- Rainer Magold – Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP
Barbara Mayer-Trautmann –
- Werner Meier – Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP
Eva Reudelhuber –
Bettina Steinhauer –
- Johannes Tieves – Hengeler Mueller
- Christina Ungeheuer – Latham & Watkins LLP
Neil Weiand –
Allen & Overy LLP
Allen & Overy LLP’s ‘dynamic’ team has ‘a strong market position’, and is ‘a leading firm’ for bank lending. Major banks and blue-chip corporations instruct this broad practice which frequently interacts with the capital markets team and has seen an increase in foreign currency financings, most recently advising Voith on a syndicated facility totalling RMB2.25bn under Chinese law. It also advised Schaeffler on a new €8bn credit agreement, and assisted SAP with obtaining financing for its acquisition of Ariba. Neil Weiand shows ‘outstanding customer commitment’ and is ‘able to explain complex legal scenarios in simple language’, and Thomas Neubaum displays ‘outstanding skills and client focus’.
Clifford Chance’s comprehensive practice has outstanding international capabilities. Recent work includes advising UniCredit Bank, Goldman Sachs and Deutsche Bank on the refinancing of Brenntag Group; Royal Bank of Canada on financing the €2.75bn acquisition of 100% of shares in Open Grid Europe; and DZ Bank on the refinancing and sale of automotive supplier Novem to Bregal Capital. It also advised Ciech Group on its debt refinancing. Barbara Mayer-Trautmann and Bettina Steinhauer are recommended.
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer is a ‘fantastic’ choice for borrower-side advice but also frequently acts for lenders, and recently advised a banking consortium led by Commerzbank on the restructuring of existing syndicated credit facilities for Schmolz + Bickenbach. The team also advised Liberty Global Europe on the financing of the merger of its German subsidiaries Unitymedia and Kabel BW, and acted for Linde on the $4.5bn financing of its proposed takeover of Lincare Holdings. Real estate financing has been a growth area of work for the team. Frank Laudenklos and Yorck Jetter are recommended.
Hengeler Mueller’s broad practice is particularly adept at handling restructuring-related matters and is gaining recognition for its up-and-coming lawyers. The team acts for borrowers and lenders, and recent highlights include advising Amprion on a syndicated loan; representing BNP Paribas, Deutsche Bank, HSBC and J.P. Morgan as lenders on the €8bn refinancing of Schaeffler; and acting for Landesbank Baden-Württemberg on the financing of Patrizia Immobilien’s acquisition of LBBW Immobilien. Johannes Tieves and Thomas Cron ‘belong among the top partners for finance in Germany’.
Linklaters LLP provides ‘exemplary service’ and ‘availability, no matter what time of the day’. It is a leading lender-side practice and excels at real estate financing. The team advised the lenders on the refinancing of Schaeffler’s existing senior facilities, and advised UBS and RBS on the debt financing of Labelux Group’s acquisition of Jimmy Choo. It also advised REpower Systems on a €750m growth financing. Marc Trinkaus is ‘technically good’, ‘calm and not easily flustered’. Eva Reudelhuber is also recommended.
Leveraged and real estate finance are key areas of Ashurst LLP’s practice, which has shown ‘fantastic development’ recently. Noteworthy instructions included advising a banking consortium on financing the planned €2.7bn acquisition of Open Grid Europe, and assisting Deutsche Pfandbriefbank, Natixis and Société Générale as lenders on the financing of an acquisition of a portfolio of residential apartments. Anne Grewlich is ‘co-operative and efficient’, and Stephan Kock shows ‘perseverance and relentless efforts to get the best deal for his client’.
Latham & Watkins LLP is an excellent choice for restructuring and refinancing matters, and it also recently advised Apollo Global Management on the financing of its acquisition of Taminco, and acted for the senior lenders on EQT’s acquisition of BSN medical from Montagu Private Equity. Christina Ungeheuer ‘focuses on achieving quick and outstanding results’, Rüdiger Malaun ‘never stops until goals are achieved’, and Andreas Diem is ‘very constructive during negotiations’.
Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP’s highly regarded team works as an integrated practice with the London and New York offices and recently represented Axel Springer during the refinancing of a €1.5bn revolving credit facility. It also acted for Commerzbank and LBBW as arrangers of syndicated credit facilities for Georg von Holtzbrinck. Thomas Ingenhoven and the ‘excellent’ Rainer Magold are ‘very experienced and flexible in negotiations’.
CMS’ broad practice is ‘able to complete seemingly Herculean tasks’, according to one client. It has continued to expand its client base, and recently advised a bank on the restructuring of two Danish financings pertaining to German real estate portfolios; and Allianz Real Estate on financing the acquisition of Berlin’s Gropius Passagen shopping centre. Thomas de la Motte is recommended along with Markus Pfaff, who impresses with his ‘know-how, negotiating skills and perseverance’.
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP advised the Hellenic Republic during its sovereign debt restructuring, and acted for Morgan Stanley as facility and security agent on Hebei Lingyun Industrial Group’s acquisition of Kiekert. Werner Meier is ‘a dedicated expert who is more knowledgeable than the bank’s legal advisers’, according to one client, and clients also say that the team’s excellence is ‘worth the money’.
Gleiss Lutz enjoys an excellent reputation for representing borrowers, but also advises several financial institutions such as Aareal Bank and Helaba. The team advised Vermögensverwaltung Dr. Karl Goldschmidt on the financing of its acquisition of a metal components manufacturer. Helge Kortz has ‘broad knowledge and experience’, and is able to ‘combine pragmatic solutions with the best outcome for the client’.
Hogan Lovells International LLP has been busy with real estate mandates and has an increasing volume of instructions with US aspects. The team advised Deka Bank on the refinancing of a shopping centre in Japan; Crédit Agricole and UniCredit Bank on a €800m corporate loan to Voestalpine; and Immeo Wohnen on the refinancing of a securitised real estate portfolio. Katlen Blöcker heads the practice.
Norton Rose LLP is particularly strong in ship and project finance. It also recently advised UniCredit Bank, Bayerische Landesbank and Deutsche Pfandbriefbank on a €229m financing provided to E-shelter Group; and UniCredit Bank on its financing of a real estate portfolio. Other clients include HSBC and LBBW. Practice head Ralf Springer is ‘pragmatic and deal-oriented’, and is ‘fully aware of clients’ requirements’.
White & Case LLP has been visible in the corporate loans market and particularly in the restructuring arena. It advised Tom Tailor on its refinancing, acted for Citibank (China) on all German law aspects pertaining to Voith’s financings, and advised Gildemeister on a syndicated financing. Tom Oliver Schorling is ‘a strong communicator’ who ‘comes to agreements with the other side without involving us’. However, the practice suffered a blow when Sabine Schomaker and Clemens Niedner joined SJ Berwin LLP and the highly regarded Annica Lindegren moved to Jones Day in January 2013.
Baker & McKenzie again demonstrated its ability to handle large cross-border matters when it advised Chonqing Light Industry & Textile on the financing of its acquisition of the insolvent SaarGummi Group. The team also advised LBBW as lender on a senior syndicated loan facility to finance an acquisition. Oliver Socher is ‘always first choice’ and has ‘a commercial and pragmatic approach’. Matthias Eggert is also recommended.
Boutique firm Lindemann Schwennicke & Partner enjoys an excellent reputation thanks to the expertise of name partners Thomas Lindemann and Andreas Schwennicke. Recent highlights include advising the lenders on the refinancing of a DIY warehouse chain. Clients include Commerzbank and LBBW.
Mayer Brown LLP has seen an increase in real estate mandates such as advising DeWAG on the refinancing of a residential property portfolio; and Cornerstone on a retail portfolio refinancing. Jochen Seitz has ‘in-depth expertise’ and ‘a good understanding of regulatory requirements’, and Andreas Lange is ‘very good in complex refinancing transactions’. However, former practice head Manfred Heemann joined Ernst & Young Law.
Refinancing and real estate work have kept Noerr busy, and the team has expanded its banking clientele. The team advised Postbank on the refinancing of the former Saalepark Center in Leipzig; and Thomas Cook on the refinancing of an existing syndicated facility agreement. Sebastian Bock is the key name in the team, which recruited Andreas Naujoks from Luther Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH. However, Olaf Grabowski left the firm.
Thomas Schrell heads SJ Berwin LLP’s team, which was significantly strengthened by the recruitment of Sabine Schomaker and Clemens Niedner from White & Case LLP in January 2013. Highlights included advising LBBW on loan restructurings; and Helaba on a real estate refinancing. Other clients include Deutsche Bank London and Société Générale. The team ‘understands lenders’ interests’ and gives ‘highly qualified advice’.
Shearman & Sterling LLP works closely with colleagues in London, and recently advised the banks on a $5bn credit facility for Toyota Motor Credit Corporation. The ‘experienced’ Winfried Carli is ‘commercially minded’ and ‘highly committed’, and Esther Jansen is ‘simply best-in-class’.
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP’s Johannes Kremer excels at refinancing and restructuring. Recent highlights include advising Agravis Raiffeisen on a new €600m syndicated credit facility agreement, and providing refinancing advice to Doughty Hanson. It is also acting for Quadriga Capital on the debt restructuring of portfolio company Süddekor.
Claus Goedecke heads Taylor Wessing’s practice, which has won several new banking clients. The team recently advised Imperial Holdings on the financing of its acquisition of Lehnkering, and acted for Pramerica on the financing of Madison Real Estate’s purchase of an interest in a landmark skyscraper in Frankfurt. Hauke Bornschein has ‘very good business knowledge’ and provides ‘great service’.
Weil, Gotshal & Manges excels at debt restructuring and refinancing, and recently advised 360T Beteiligungs GmbH on obtaining financing for its purchase of a majority stake in 360 Treasury Systems. It also advised Strategic Value Partners and Oak Hill Advisors on the financial restructuring of Pfleiderer. Michael Kohl heads the finance team.
Clifford Chance excels at high-value, complex cross-border project financings. It recently advised Bi-Courtney Highway Services on the $1.5bn Lagos-Ibadan Expressway project, one of Nigeria’s first PPP transactions, and is acting for several lenders on the €1.1bn financing of the development, reconstruction and operation of St Petersburg’s Pulkovo Airport. In the energy sector, the team has been instructed as financing counsel to the project company on the development and financing of the Nabucco natural gas pipeline project. Tobias Schulten is ‘superb’, and Riko Vanezis heads the practice.
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer is strong in energy and transport infrastructure matters, and has particular expertise at the intersection of public law, procurement and financing. The team is advising Deutsche Bank on a Hermes-covered credit facility to finance an acquisition of a 100MW wind farm in Quebec; and HSH Nordbank on the financing of two solar energy parks in Spain. It also advised a consortium of banks led by Bayerische Landesbank on the project financing of the construction of two new data centres for T-Systems International. Daniel Reichert-Facilides is recommended.
Allen & Overy LLP enjoys a good reputation for large-scale infrastructure projects and energy matters, and is acting for European Investment Bank on the financing of offshore wind farms. It is also advising DZ Bank on the €44m project financing of a 20MWp solar energy park in Germany. Norbert Wiederholt is well regarded.
Linklaters LLP has been visible in the renewable energy financing space, where it advised KfW-IPEX, NIBC and LBBW on offshore wind farm financings, and acted for Commerzbank on the financing of the acquisition of solar energy parks in Italy. Other work included advising a consortium led by Macquarie on the acquisition of Open Grid Europe from E.ON. Eva Reudelhuber is ‘pragmatic’ and ‘understands our concerns and commercial objectives’.
White & Case LLP has been busy advising on energy, transport and other infrastructure matters, including acting for NordLB on the financing of two solar energy parks; and HSH Nordbank on the financing of a wind farm portfolio. It has also acted on other project financings in several European and African countries. Alexander Reuter heads the group.
CMS has seen an increase in renewable energy instructions, including advising Global Tech I Offshore Wind on the €1.5bn financing of Global Tech I offshore wind farm. The team has also been acting for the lenders on the financing of a leisure park with 500 holiday homes in Germany. Marc Riede is ‘extremely well known’.
Norton Rose LLP has strong expertise in PPP matters, and recently acted for Baader Bank on the financing of a renewable energy project. It also advised the lender syndicate, led by LBBW, KfW IPEX and Bremer Landesbank, on the financing of a gas-fired power plant. Dirk Trautmann is ‘an extremely well recognised name in the market’. Timo Noftz was promoted to the partnership.
Watson, Farley & Williams LLP has ‘a fantastic offshore practice’ as part of its well regarded, wider renewable energy practice, and the team shows ‘incredible knowledge and business judgement’. It advised HSH Nordbank and NordLB on the financing of two solar energy projects; LBBW on the €58m financing of France’s La Chapelle offshore wind farm; and the lead arrangers on a €1bn debt financing of the Global Tech I wind farm. Thomas Hollenhorst and Stefan Kilgus are the practice co-heads.
Hogan Lovells International LLP’s expertise focuses on energy and infrastructure project finance. The team advised a consortium of BAM and Vinci on its bid for the first A-model motorway programme contract. Several energy and engineering companies also instruct the team, which is headed by Ulrich Helm.
Noerr capitalises on its regulated industry and PPP expertise, and regularly advises banks on renewable energy project financings. Borrower clients include NA Renewable Energy and Nawaro BioEnergie. Torsten Fett heads the banking and finance group.