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Shearman & Sterling LLP

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Robert Freedman

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Shearman & Sterling LLP

Work Department

Project Development & Finance Group


Robert N. Freedman is a partner in Shearman & Sterling’s Project Development & Finance Group and Co-Head of the firm’s Sustainable Development Group. His practice focuses on finance and development, asset acquisitions and dispositions and complex work-outs and restructurings across the power, renewables, oil and gas (upstream and downstream) and transportation sectors, internationally and in the United States. Mr. Freedman has been named a leading lawyer in project finance by Chambers USA, Chambers Latin America, Chambers Global, IFLR 1000 and Guide to the World’s Leading Project Finance Lawyers.


Georgetown University Law Center, J.D., 1996, cum laude; State University of New York at Binghamton, B.S., 1993, summa cum laude

Latin America: International firms

Corporate and M&A

Within: Corporate and M&A

Shearman & Sterling LLP has demonstrated great determination to build out its M&A practice in Latin America. Having promoted São Paulo’s Jonathan Kellner, a fluent Spanish and Portuguese speaker who is a ‘star in his field’, to partner in 2016, it then promoted São Paulo-based Andrea Campos to counsel in 2017. This comes at a time when the firm is experiencing notable growth in Brazil inbound transactions along with deals in other key economies such as Argentina, Chile, Colombia and elsewhere. The core Latin America team has done well to target existing firm clients, including corporates and sovereign wealth funds. Kellner worked alongside New York partner Robert Freedman to advise GE Capital Global Holdings on its acquisition of a 25% stake in YPF Energía Eléctrica from Argentine oil-major, YPF. A New York team led by global M&A head (and global co-managing partner of the firm) George Casey, advised Liberty Global on its $9.3bn spin-off of Liberty Latin America. In another headline deal, it also advised Citigroup’s Mexican subsidiary Citibanamex on the sale of its asset management arm to global investment manager BlackRock. Other key partners include Latin America regional head Antonia Stolper, Manuel Orillac and Robert Ellison in São Paulo.

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Projects and energy

Within: Projects and energy

Shearman & Sterling LLP has a broad-based practice, covering oil and gas, power, renewables, transmission lines, transport infrastructure, and mining and metals. Moreover it has widespread geographic coverage, including major jurisdictions such as Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Peru, Argentina, Ecuador, Paraguay and Bolivia. The Latin America team covers a mix of project development, project finance and project refinancings, including those involving capital markets issuances. It has an even balance of Latin American and international sponsor clients, along with a rich variety of lender clients, including commercial banks, private equity funds, sovereign wealth funds and pension funds. Recent mandates include advising Y-GEN Eléctrica and Y‐GEN II Eléctrica, the joint venture operations owned by General Electric and YPF, on the $220m financing of the construction of two gas-fired power stations in Argentina; this was the first project finance loan to close in Argentina for more than a decade. The practice also represented Carso Gasoducto Norte on the $545m non-recourse project financing of the 630km natural gas pipeline from Samalayuca, Chihuahua to Sásabe, Sonora in Mexico. Gregory Tan is global head of project development and finance, has a strong focus on Latin America, and delivers ‘a consistently good experience in terms of knowledge and an ability to be commercial in his approach’. Head of the firm’s mining and metals practice, Cynthia Urda Kassis is ‘a fixture on the Latin American scene especially in mining and oil and gas’, a ‘lovely human being who persuades and wins points through logic and reason rather than fist pounding’, she is ‘very smart, very constructive, and very capable and clever – clients love her’. Alexandro Padrés is Mexico and New York-qualified, and has an especially strong record in Mexican and Chilean renewable energy and mining projects. Robert Freedman provides further senior expertise in energy sector transactions. Associate Augusto Ruiloba is ‘a very good attorney’; ‘incredibly smart and business oriented’, he ‘knows how to deal with clients and people sitting across the table from him’.

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United States: Finance

Project finance

Within: Project finance

From its New York office, Shearman & Sterling LLP provides ‘practical, commercial and insightful advice’ to a strong mix of lenders and sponsors on infrastructure and energy projects, both in the US and in Latin America. Cynthia Urda Kassis advised government entities on various significant road and rail projects, including acting for the US Department of Transportation on the issuance of private activity bonds and subordinated debt for the purpose of financing toll lanes between North Virginia and Washington DC. In the oil and gas sector, Kassis acted for a syndicate of 19 commercial banks on the $7.3bn financing of the Gasoducto Sur Peruano project in Peru. The other key figure in the team is Gregory Tan, who advised sponsors on numerous energy projects in Latin America: as well as assisting Carso Gasoducto Norte and its affiliates with the $535m project financing of the development of a gas pipeline running from Chihuahua to Sonora in Mexico, Tan also advised Y-GEN Eléctrica and Y-GEN II Eléctrica on the financing of the construction of two gas-fired power stations in Argentina. The practice is also present in Wash DC, where Patricia Hammes and ‘outstanding’ New York-based lawyer Robert Freedman were active for lenders to the conventional power sector.

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United States: Industry focus

Energy transactions: conventional power

Within: Energy transactions: conventional power

In 2017 Shearman & Sterling LLP was kepy busy handling a high volume of development and finance remits in Latin America, including New York-based Gregory Tan acting for Y-GEN Eléctrica and Y-GEN II Eléctrica on the financing for the construction of two gas-fired power stations in Argentina. Domestic work included DC-based practice co-head Patricia Hammes acting for the lenders on Helix Generation’s $2.2bn acquisition of 3,950MW of generation resources. New York-based Robert Freedman jointly heads the practice.

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Energy transactions: oil and gas

Within: Energy transactions: oil and gas

Shearman & Sterling LLP’s New York-based team excels in international project finance, and in one highlight Cynthia Urda Kassis acted for a syndicate of 19 commercial banks on the financing of the Gasoducto Sur Peruano project in Peru. The team also undertakes corporate and capital markets work for the likes of Petrobras. Gregory Tan and Robert Freedman are additional contacts.

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Energy: renewable/alternative

Within: Energy: renewable/alternative

Shearman & Sterling LLP’s New York-based team regularly advises on the financing of cross-border projects; Gregory Tan acted for the sponsors on the $235m financing of the development, construction and operation of two solar photovoltaic projects in Mexico. The other name to note is Robert Freedman, who acted for the lead placement agents on various capital markets financings, both in the US and abroad.

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