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The ‘knowledgeable and effective’ banking practice at Bruchou, Fernández Madero & Lombardi finds favour for ‘always going the extra mile for clients’. The group, which is led by the ‘solution-focusedHugo Bruzone, also impresses with its ‘excellent cost-to-service ratio’ and ‘great ability to call on cross-sector support’. Other key contacts in the ‘deep and broad’ team include managing partner Carlos Lombardi, who brings to bear a strong record in regulatory matters; corporate finance specialist Analía Battaglia and ‘future star’ José María Bazán. Project finance, syndicated loans and debt capital markets are all core areas of expertise and the firm enjoys strong relationships with the full spread of domestic, regional and multinational banks – it also acts for corporate borrowers and issuers. Among its headline transactions, the team acted for the joint bookrunners (BBVA Securities, Citigroup Global Markets, Deutsche Bank Securities, HSBC Securities, JP Morgan Securities and Santander Investment Securities) on the Republic of Argentina’s $7bn bond issuance. In another significant public-sector deal, it advised both the initial purchasers in Argentina and the international purchasers on a $1.5bn international notes offering by the Province of Buenos Aires. On the project finance side, the team advised the arrangers (Credit Suisse Securities (USA), Citigroup Global Markets and Export Development Canada), on a $219m loan to two affiliate companies of YPF and General Electric to finance the construction and maintenance of two thermoelectric power plants. Banco Itaú, China Development Bank and Goldman Sachs are also representative clients.

The consensus among Marval, O'Farrell & Mairal’s clients is that its banking team is ‘the most reliable in Argentina’, due its ‘deep and experienced bench’ and ‘reassuringly well-informed partners’. The group packs a punch across the full spread of syndicated loans, structured finance, debt capital markets and project finance, and it also has formidable supplementary expertise in banking M&A and regulatory matters. Among the names to note, department head Santiago Carregal is an ‘instantly recognisable name for banking deals’; he recently advised the international purchasers (UBS and Itaú Securities) and the local purchasers (Balanz, Industrial Valores and Puente H’nos) on the local aspects of Raghsa’s $100m notes offering. Other senior members of the team include the ‘very experienced and creative’ Roberto Silva Jr and department coordinator Gabriel Matarasso; the latter acted as local counsel to International Finance Corporation (IFC), Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC) and Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) on a $410m project financing provided to Renova. Matarasso also teamed up with Juan Diehl Moreno and Diego Chighizola to act for the banks on a $750m acquisition financing granted to Cablevisión Holding to support its purchase of a stake in Telecom Argentina. Among the banking group’s company-side work, Fernando Hernández, Hernán Slemenson and M&A specialist Pablo Viñals Blake assisted Adecoagro on its $500m international bond offering. The practice also draws on the experience of ‘banking expertCecilia Mairal and senior associate Francisco Abeal, who is a ‘lawyer to watch’.

Beccar Varela’s ‘very knowledgeable and professional’ team is commended for its ‘pro-deal approach’ and for ‘understanding and meeting the needs of foreign lenders, while protecting the borrower’s interests’. Client favourite Roberto Fortunati is ‘extremely experienced’ and co-heads the department – he recently advised Total Eren on obtaining a $167m loan to finance a wind project. Banking co-head Pablo Torretta is a key contact for regulatory matters and plays a leading role in the firm’s ongoing advice to several local and multinational banks on a diverse spread of regulatory issues. In a headline piece of banking M&A, capital markets lead Javier Magnasco paired up with Alejandro Poletto to advise Deutsche Bank on the sale of its business in Argentina to Banco Comafi. Roberto Crouzel, Maximiliano D’Auro and ‘excellent senior associate’ Daniel Levi are also recommended.

Beccar Varela - Spanish translation: El equipo "muy bien informado y profesional" de Beccar Varela es elogiado por su "enfoque a favor de los tratos" y por "entender y satisfacer las necesidades de los prestamistas extranjeros, al tiempo que protege los intereses del prestatario". El favorito de los clientes, Roberto Fortunati, es "extremadamente experimentado" y es uno de los jefes del departamento. Recientemente, asesoró a Total Eren en la obtención de un préstamo por $167 millones para financiar un proyecto eólico. El cojefe de banca, Pablo Torretta, es un contacto clave para asuntos regulatorios y desempeña un papel importante en el asesoramiento continuo de la firma a varios bancos locales y multinacionales en relación con una amplia variedad de temas regulatorios. En un importante suceso de fusiones y adquisiciones bancarias, el jefe de mercados de capital, Javier Magnasco, colaboró con Alejandro Poletto para asesorar a Deutsche Bank en la venta de su negocio en Argentina al Banco Comafi. También se recomienda a Roberto Crouzel, Maximiliano D’Auro y al "excelente asociado sénior" Daniel Levi.

Led by Néstor Belgrano, M & M Bomchil’s four-partner group is prominent in debt capital markets, project finance and traditional lending matters – for both financial institutions and corporate borrowers. Corporate finance specialist Fermín Caride was at the helm for several of the firm’s highlight deals over the past year, including advising Itaú Unibanco (Nassau Branch) on a $45m secured term loan to Grupo Inversor Petroquímica. Elsewhere, Patricio Martin assisted Aeropuertos Argentina 2000 with its $400m bond offering. Other key contacts include financial restructuring specialist Tomás Araya and senior associate María Victoria Funes.

Diligent, knowledgeable and meticulous’, Mitrani Caballero & Ruiz Moreno Abogados is widely lauded for providing ‘very sophisticated advice in a timely manner’. Clients draw particular attention to the group’s ‘strong multidisciplinary approach’, which enhances its ability to ‘internally draw upon other departments to provide holistic advice’. Group head Diego Parise is ‘extremely thorough and responsive’; he advised Ternium on its $1.5bn five-year term loan facility from a syndicate of banks. On the lender side, Julio Martínez advised the Export-Import Bank of China on the local aspects of its $331.5m credit agreement with the Republic of Argentina to finance the construction of a photovoltaic power plant project. Natalia Rauchberger, ‘who provides comprehensive advice’, and the ‘very efficient’ Carlos Trogolo Eliçabe are also noted.

During 2017/18, Pérez Alati, Grondona, Benites & Arntsen suffered the departures of highly rated younger partners Federico Wilensky, who left for an in-house role at TGLT, and José Martínez de Hoz (n), who joined splinter firm Martínez de Hoz & Rueda. However, the firm’s senior firepower remains intact, with practice head Diego Serrano Redonnet, who is regarded ‘among the best in his field’, and Mariano Grondona both recommended for banking matters. Recent highlights include advising the dealer managers and the local placement agents on a $210m bond offering by the Province of Jujuy and also advising China Development Bank on a $150m loan to Banco de Inversión y Comercio Exterior.

Finance is a significant sweet spot for Salaverri, Burgio & Wetzler Malbran, which is regarded by many as a ‘top choice for capital markets transactions in Argentina’ – it also attracts a steady stream of project finance, export finance and traditional lending deals. Key partner Roberto Lizondo had a banner year, particularly in the debt capital markets arena where, notably, he advised the initial purchasers (JP Morgan Securities and Morgan Stanley) on a $510m notes offering by the Province of Córdoba. Among the practice’s borrower-side mandates, Tomás Arnaude and Elena Sozzani acted for Pampa Energía / Castlelake joint venture, Greenwind, on a $104m loan from IIC, Santander and Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) for the construction of the El Corti wind farm project. Department head Diego Salaverri is also highly regarded.

Tavarone, Rovelli, Salim & Miani’s comprehensive finance practice covers all the bases, with robust expertise in debt capital markets – arguably its signature strength – as well as traditional lending, project finance, sovereign finance and regulatory matters. Led jointly by Marcelo Tavarone, Federico Salim and Juan Pablo Bove, the team also includes Julieta De Ruggiero, who joined in 2017 from Bruchou, Fernández Madero & Lombardi. Recent capital markets mandates included assisting the Province of Córdoba with its $510m notes offering. Among its work for banks, the firm advised Credit Suisse International, as sole arranger, administrative agent and lender, on providing a $80m secured credit facility to Medanito. The group has also recently undertaken work for HSBC Bank Argentina, UBS Investment Bank and Sancor Seguros.

Allende & Brea shines in fintech matters and its growing profile in this area saw it recently appointed to advise new industry organisation Cámara Argentina de Fintech on all legal and regulatory matters – department head Carlos Melhem is the key partner for that work. Jorge Mayora, who handles a wide range of banking, capital markets and project finance matters, is also recommended. Other representative clients include Banco Industrial, Barclays Bank and Syngenta Agro.

At Baker McKenzie, group head Gabriel Gómez Giglio brings to bear a strong record in both transactional and regulatory banking issues, with notable expertise in multi-jurisdictional matters. In a recent example, he paired up with Francisco Fernández Rostello to advise Wells Fargo on an $8.5m loan to Sullair. On the borrower side, the same team advised Medanito on an $80m syndicated loan. Among its recent regulatory work, the firm advised Totsa Total Oil Trading on the regulatory framework applicable to over-the-counter derivatives transactions.

Bulló Abogados’ banking practice is particularly well versed in regulatory matters but it also advises lenders, underwriters, issuers and borrowers on lending, debt capital markets and debt restructuring transactions. Gustavo Torassa is a key contact and recently advised trophy client HSBC Bank Argentina on Argentina’s voluntary tax compliance programme. However, the firm suffered the departure of Francisco Roggero for Zang, Bergel & Viñes Abogados in June 2018. Other representative clients include Banco Comafi, Banco Itaú Argentina and Greylock Capital Management.

The ‘highly responsive and effective’ group at Cabanellas, Etchebarne & Kelly routinely advises its strong stable of financial services clients, which includes local and international commercial banks, insurance companies, investment funds and corporate lenders, on a broad scope of finance matters. Debt capital markets is a notable area of expertise, with ‘very capable’ New York-head Marcelo Etchebarne highly regarded in this field ¬¬– he also has a strong record in private equity. Alejandro Ezequiel Noblía is also a key contact.

Errecondo, González & Funes’ signature finance practice is the ‘jewel in the firm’s crown’, according to sources. The firm’s capital markets expertise is especially well regarded and it is often called upon by issuers to advise on sovereign and semi-sovereign international debt offerings; it also has a strong underwriter-side practice. Among its recent highlights, the team advised the underwriters (BBVA Banco Francés, Banco Santander Río, Banco de Galicia y Buenos Aires, Banco Macro and Macro Securities) on a $39.8m notes offering by John Deere Credit Compañía Financiera. On the borrower-side, the firm advised Empresa Inversora Energética on a $300m credit facility provided by UBS Securities. Javier Errecondo heads the department and is a ‘go-to finance specialist’.

New firm Martínez de Hoz & Rueda, which was formed by the breakaway of several key partners from former legacy firm Pérez Alati, Grondona, Benites, Arntsen & Martínez De Hoz, Jr, should fare well in the banking area. The group is well known for its energy prowess and has strong expertise in project finance, trade finance and debt capital markets transactions for key clients such as Axion Energy Argentina, BNP Paribas and IFC. José Martínez de Hoz (n) and Martin Lepiane jointly lead the practice.

Banking work is a mainstay at Nicholson y Cano Abogados and the firm regularly advises across a wide range of capital markets, project finance, traditional lending, foreign exchange and regulatory matters. Key names in the ‘knowledgeable and experienced’ group include infrastructure expert Mariano Fabrizio, who is ‘a true professional’, corporate finance specialist Marcelo Villegas and securities partner Mario Kenny. HSBC and Banco Comafi are among its representative clients.

With a ‘strongly professional group’, Estudio O'Farrell strikes the right note with its ‘speedy and accurate advice’. Under the leadership of Uriel O’Farrell, the team is well known for its specialist experience in in advising issuers on debt offerings. As a case in point, O’Farrell recently acted in conjunction with the ‘responsive and knowledgeableSebastián Luegmayer to assist national oil company YPF with a $750m international notes offering. The group also advises John Deere Credit Compañía Financiera on its debt offerings. Foreign exchange regulations, debt restructurings and project finance are also notable areas of activity.

Severgnini, Robiola, Grinberg & Tombeur is particularly well versed in regulatory matters, with both local and foreign banks regularly turning to the team for advice on incorporations and licensing issues. On the transactional side, the firm has solid experience in traditional lending, project finance, banking M&A and restructuring. Among its recent work, the firm advised AES Generación Argentina (as borrower) on a $75m debt restructuring with Japanese creditors Mitsubishi and Sojitz. Carlos Tombeur directs an experienced group that also includes Matías Grinberg.

The ‘responsive and informed’ group at Tanoira Cassagne Abogados sets itself apart through its ‘strong industry knowledge’ and ‘excellent cost-to-service ratio’. Sources are particularly effusive in their praise for firm co-founder and key contact Alexia Rosenthal, who is an ‘expert in her field’. Capital markets is a core pillar of the practice and it advised key client YPF on several debt issuances over the past year, including a $1bn debt offering. The team also advised Banco Galicia y Buenos Aires on a $150m debt offering. Other representative clients include Banco Macro, Santander Río and HSBC Securities.

Zang, Bergel & Viñes Abogados is a strong performer in the debt capital markets space and it also has significant expertise in structured finance, real estate finance and restructurings. Corporate finance specialist Carolina Zang heads the department and recently advised property developer IRSA Propiedades Comerciales on a $140m notes offering issued under its $500m global note programme. The practice has also recently undertaken work for BACS Banco de Crédito y Securitización, Banco Hipotecario and Tarshop. Of counsel María Cecilia Pasman is also recommended.

Alfaro-Abogados leverages its pronounced industry focus on the commodities, energy and natural resources areas to specialise in trade finance and project finance. It also has sound experience in aircraft finance, debt capital markets and structured finance. Carlos Alfaro heads a team that counts banks, private equity funds and project sponsors among its clients.

At Cerolini & Ferrari Abogados, department head Agustín Luis Cerolini brings to bear a strong record in debt capital markets, trusts, structured finance and regulatory issues. Highlights included advising Credishop on the securitization of a loan portfolio through the establishment of a trust to issue debt securities in Argentina’s capital markets.

Among Hope, Duggan & Silva’s recent work, Gotardo Pedemonte advised Rombo Compañía Financiera on its AR$3bn notes programme. The department, which is led by Juan Duggan is also noted for its experience in traditional lending and project finance matters.

New entrant to the ranking Lanfranco & Detry secures strong praise from clients for its ‘great experience and professionalism’. In particular, key contact Fermín Castro Madero7 is a ‘thorough lawyer with very insightful views and ideas’; he recently advised Triquim on a $3m loan provided by Banco de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires.

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