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White & Case LLP

SOUTHEAST FINANCIAL CENTER, 200 SOUTH BISCAYNE BOULEVARD, SUITE 4900, MIAMI, FL 33131-2352, USA
Tel:
Work +1 305 371 2700
Fax:
Fax +1 305 358 5744
Web:
www.whitecase.com

Carlos Viana

Tel:
Work +1 305 995 5251
Email:
White & Case

Work Department

Project Finance, Power, Oil & Gas, Mining & Metals, Latin America, Infrastructure

Position

Partner

Career

To read more, visit: whitecase.com/people/carlos-viana


Latin America: International firms

Banking and finance

Within: Leading lawyers

Carlos Viana - White & Case LLP

Within: Banking and finance

White & Case LLP’s broad banking and finance offering continues to impress across Latin America. In addition to having established offices in São Paulo and Mexico City, the firm has prominent finance teams in Miami, New York and Washington DC that serve the Latin America market and ‘delivers services across the financing spectrum’, according to one client. Sabrena Silver joined the New York office from Linklaters LLP in 2017 to add further credibility in highly structured transactions. Since joining the firm, Silver advised Deutsche Bank on a $150m syndicated loan to Colombian national airline Avianca, the transaction taking into account aspects of Colombian law that impact sale of future receivables, US Chapter 11 concerns and receivables generated under a Costa Rican-law, credit card processing agreement. The firm’s longstanding focus on Argentina has paid dividends with a series of finance engagements in the jurisdiction, while its hugely impressive Brazilian borrower client base, ensures a steady pipeline of significant transactions. The São Paulo office advised Fibria International Trade (as borrower) and Fibria Cellulose S (as guarantor) on a $700m unsecured export prepayment loan facility to finance the group’s production and export of cellulose products and to refinance certain existing export related debt. It also represented Petrobras and its subsidiary Petrobras Netherlands on a $1bn syndicated loan to the latter, which is guaranteed by Petrobras and secured by a semi-submersible oil production vessel and an interest in insurance proceeds payable in respect of the vessel. In aviation finance, the Latin America team has also experienced significant growth, thanks in part to the efforts of Miami partner Christian Hansen, who represents the likes of Aeroméxico and Copa Airlines. Acquisition finance and securitisation continue to be major segments for the practice, as is project finance in which the firm has a high market share of Latin America deals in both energy and infrastructure. Miami partner Carlos Viana is ‘a dominant finance lawyer’, who is ‘fully involved in the transaction’, is ‘very responsive and sympathetic to clients’ needs’ and has ‘good knowledge of the industry, products and counterparties’. São Paulo partner John Anderson has made a big impression in Brazil, especially with local borrowers; he is regarded as ‘very smart’, having ‘a lot of integrity’ and being ‘pragmatic’: he ‘focuses on the things that matter and doesn’t waste time on the things that don’t’. New York and Miami partner Jeanine Acevedo is ‘very responsive, patient, and thorough’, and is very well regarded for project finance. Miami’s Fernando de la Hoz is another prominent name, as is head of the São Paulo office Donald Baker. Miami associate Thomas Pate is ‘always responsive and able to fully grasp any concern of the client and how to mitigate it’.

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Projects and energy

Within: Leading lawyers

Carlos Viana - White & Case LLP

Within: Projects and energy

White & Case LLP launched a Houston office in February 2018, bringing in a number of senior practitioners with significant Latin America experience. The new Houston partners Jay Cuclis, Steven Otillar and Christopher Richardson have a strong focus on Latin America and significant oil and gas expertise; they joined from Vinson & Elkins LLP, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP and Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP respectively. Building on the firm’s strong profile in downstream oil and gas, the new team extends its expertise into upstream and midstream development and commercial issues. With its eminent Mexico City office, the firm is well plugged into Mexico’s hydrocarbon sector reform-related work. Beyond oil and gas, the firm continues to impress in power and renewables, including in Argentina, Chile and Uruguay. It has also experienced growth in PPP engagements, including in Paraguay and Argentina. Showcasing its expertise in infrastructure and project bonds, the firm advised the banks on the $2bn cross-border debt issuance by state-owned Petróleos del Perú-Petroperú; the proceeds of what was the largest-ever offering by a Peruvian issuer are intended to finance a large-scale upgrade and modernisation of the Talara Refinery. It also represented Invenergy as sponsor, and Nicefield as borrower, in the refinancing of the 70MW Campo Palomas wind farm project in Uruguay. The firm is commended for its expertise in structuring and negotiating EPC, TUA and LNG contracts related to project development activities. Clients are ‘highly satisfied’ with its ‘support in all aspects’ and highlight its ‘customer oriented’ approach with its ‘interest in understanding client needs and commitment to these during the whole process’. ‘The level of service is high’ with ‘very prepared lawyers that deliver excellent performance’. Latin America project finance head Carlos Viana is ‘always a collegial professional and easy to work with’. São Paulo-based John Anderson provides ‘deep commitment’, ‘good technical coverage’ at a ‘reasonable cost’. In Mexico City, Sean Goldstein does an ‘excellent job’, is ‘always on top of what his associates are doing, and is always available to clarify, intervene and participate in any discussion or negotiation’. He has ‘sound experience’ in project development and project finance in the energy sector. Washington DC partner Victor DeSantis is recommended for oil and gas and infrastructure project finance; he is ‘very reasonable’, ‘knows what he is talking about’, has ‘years of experience’; ‘very commercial, practical’ he ‘is not out there to win points’, and ‘has a view on getting deals done and not getting lost in the weeds’. Washington DC’s Ned Neaher is also recommended for lender-side engagements and Miami-based Jeanine Acevedo is another key name in the team. New York’s John Vetterli brings leading capital markets expertise to the firm’s project and infrastructure bonds engagements. Former Mexico City partner José Ignacio Segura Alonso has joined Creel, García-Cuéllar, Aiza y Enríquez, S.C.. Named partners are based in Miami unless stated.

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United States: Finance

Project finance

Within: Project finance

White & Case LLP has a stellar reputation for LNG projects; New York-based Jason Webber and Washington DC-based Sean Johnson are acting for FLNG Liquefaction II on its private placement of $450m of investment-grade project bonds as part of the financing of the natural gas liquefaction and LNG export facility being constructed at Quintana Island near Texas. Additional mandates in the oil and gas sector were undertaken for national oil companies such as Saudi Aramco and Adnoc; New York-based Wendell Maddrey was part of an international team advising the former on its potential joint venture with PT Pertamina to expand and upgrade Pertamina’s Cilacap refinery in Indonesia. In the lender space, the practice regularly assists with projects in Latin America: Miami-based Carlos Viana and Jeannine Acevedo are advising the senior lenders, and Prudential as initial fixed-rate note purchaser, on a long-term project financing for the development of a 600km electricity transmission line in Chile; and Washington DC-based Ned Neaher is advising Banco Santander-Chile on the financing of the value added tax associated with the construction of two wind farm projects in Chile. The practice is led from New York by global practice head Arthur Scavone. Other key figures in that office are Clark Wohlferd and PPP specialist Dolly Mirchandani, who joined from Allen & Overy LLP.

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