Bankruptcy and restructuring in Argentina
Estudio Alegría, Buey Fernández, Fissore y Montemerlo
Corporate boutique Estudio Alegría, Buey Fernández, Fissore y Montemerlo is widely recognised as the country’s leading debtor-side insolvency practice. A regular fixture on both contentious and out-of-court restructurings — be it for local or foreign companies — the team brings to bear deep and broad experience in complex files across all industry sectors. Pablo Buey Fernández is highly sought after for his comprehensive expertise in the area. Gabriel Fissore is another key contact and is well versed in complex domestic and cross-border restructurings.
- Advised Molino Cañuelas on the $1.2bn restructuring of its local and foreign financial debt.
- Represented Vicentin in its ‘concurso preventivo’ filing (similar to a US Chapter 11 proceeding).
- Advised Carsa on its judicial restructuring, which later turned into an out-of-court arrangement with financial creditors.
- Acted for Tía Maruca on its concurso preventivo filing.
Already a top-tier firm for restructuring, Marval O’Farrell Mairal further strengthened its practice with the absorption of contentious bankruptcy specialist Rivera & Asociados, which saw its team swell by two partners and four associates. The combined group, which is equally adept at judicial and out-of-court restructurings, routinely advises creditors, shareholders, debtors and trustees in a wide range of bankruptcy and restructuring cases, across all industry sectors. Experienced of counsel Martín Campbell possesses an impressive record in headline restructuring cases. Department head Fernando Hernández has a focus on cross-border restructurings. Julio César Rivera (h) and Gonzalo Fontana are recommended for contentious cases.
‘Marval’s expertise in restructurings is excellent. I would say that it is difficult to match, since Argentina as a country, and its businesses in particular, have time and again needed to negotiate their obligations.’
‘Fernando Hernández is an excellent professional.’
Capital Markets Argentina
InterContinental Hotels Group
RR Donnelly de Argentina
Kawasaki Motors Corp.
Banco de Galicia y Buenos Aires
Banco Santader Río
Banco de la Provincia de Buenos Aires
Banco de la Nación Argentina
HSBC Bank Argentina
Avions de Transport Regional
Peugeot Citröen Argentina
- Acted for InterContinental Hotels Group on the reorganisation proceedings of KLP Emprendimientos (owner of the InterContinental Hotel in Mendoza).
- Advised the banks on the AR$270m debt restructuring of Longvie.
- Acted for RR Donnelly de Argentina, and its shareholders, on its $50m bankruptcy proceedings and associated actions.
- Advised Finning Argentina and Finning Chile as creditors in the bankruptcy proceedings of OPS.
Bruchou, Fernández Madero & Lombardi attracts praise for its ‘efficient implementation of legal strategies’. The firm’s signature banking and finance practice translates into a strong record in representing financial entities as creditors on bankruptcy and restructuring files. Less frequently, it also acts for debtors on restructurings. Litigation and arbitration head Carlos Rotman is recommended for his record in complex insolvency proceedings. Litigator Martín Beretervide leads the bankruptcy and restructuring department and is experienced in judicial and extrajudicial cases.
‘In general, the whole team have shown themselves to be very strong in terms of their knowledge, efficient implementation of legal strategies and dealings with clients.’
‘The firm was able to adapt the legal strategy to the needs and options of our group. The strategy they implemented had a satisfactory result, reaching the proposed objectives.’
‘The human and professional qualities of the team leaders and its members are outstanding.’
‘Martín Beretervide leads the team with ample legal ability and a personal touch.’
‘Martín Beretervide demonstrated a broad knowledge of the case, commercial judgement and quick responses.’
Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)
Interamericana de Inversiones (IIC)
Grupo ALL Argentina
Amec Foster Wheeler Americas Corp.
Statoil Marketing & Trading (US) / Equinor
Greylock Global Direct Latin America / Industrias Alimenticias Mendocinas
- Advised IDB and IIC on the restructuring of IMPSA through an extrajudicial preventive agreement.
- Represented Grupo ALL Argentina, one of the most important railways operators in Brazil, in the restructuring of its entire business in Argentina after the National Government terminated its railways freight concessions agreement.
- Acted for Tetra Pak, as creditor, in several reorganisation and bankruptcy proceedings.
Lorente & Lopez Abogados
Lorente & Lopez Abogados was established in late 2019 (following the group's departure from the former Naveira, Truffat, Martínez, Anido, Lorente & López Abogados), and focuses on insolvency and debt restructuring, corporate advisory (especially on company establishment and structuring), and litigation - both general and bankruptcy-related. The team is best known for its stand-out insolvency and restructuring capability. Here it represents both debtors and local and foreign creditors in all types of bankruptcy-related procedures. A pioneer in the bondholders' debt restructuring segment, the team also has experience representing the insolvency trustee. Senior partner Javier Armando Lorente is a figure of international stature in bankruptcy circles, a 30-year veteran whose practice centres on insolvency, complex litigation, domestic and international arbitration, partnership conflicts and corporate advisory; he is currently leading advice to Grupo Uno Medios Partners in relation to 10 distinct insolvency proceedings. Ariel Di Bártolo (insolvency, complex litigation, partnership disputes and corporate advisory), and Mariana Russo (insolvency, complex litigation, arbitration and succession planning) are also integral to the bankruptcy practice, where key insolvency, debt restructuring and litigation support comes from experienced senior associates Diego Fernando Madero and Mariana Mastrovincenzo. On the corporate side, both Diego López Ugolini and the recently promoted Martín Rozental also participate in partnership dispute matters.
‘I have worked with Lorente Lopez both in TCS as well as my previous job. They have handled complex litigation and restructuring for us, as well as other corporate matters. They are a dynamic and talented law firm. In a complex and ever evolving legal market, Lorente Lopez have always been able to assist us in mapping the effects of these changes in our operation. They invest time and resources in understanding their client’s needs and operation in order to always provide them with clear alternatives on how to proceed. In a challenging country, Lorente Lopez is able to provide an adequate level of legal certainty, which is critical when reporting to Corporate Headquarters. ‘
‘They have a great delivery. Quality is never compromised due to time constrains. Partners are very accessible. I like how they mix their teams.‘
‘The Lorente & López team is very professional, they are accessible, they understand business and the difficulties that clients face and they seek to accompany in the best way, not only advising on the different paths to take but also getting involved in the process. They put a lot of energy and dedication in each case and generate a bond of great trust and respect.‘
‘The Lorente & López Law Firm has accompanied us in our bankruptcy process, as well as in various matters related to dispute resolution, corporate matters and of all kinds. I must highlight the technical and intellectual capacity of the firm’s entire team, as well as its ability to quickly understand problems and solve them in a pragmatic way. They have accompanied us for decades with excellence and great disposition.‘
Tata Consultancy Services
Grupo MAS Energía
Instituto de Seguros
Grupo Uno Medios
Gourmand Food Hall
Costruzioni Meccaniche Luigi Bandera
Harrods Buenos Aires
Impresora Internacional de Valores
Bodegas y Viñedos Orfila
- Advising Grupo Stoneway subsidiary Araucaria Energy in relation to 13 preventative insolvency proceedings, including cross-border matters, with total liabilities of $1bn; presented in 2020, the case was subsequently withdrawn when the parties arrived at a settlement agreement.
- Representing Compañía Americana de Alimentos in its bankruptcy proceedings, initiated 2019.
- Advising the local Argentine subsidiary of telecoms-and-energy-infrastructure developer, Ezentis, in its preventative bankruptcy procedure.
- Advising domestic electrics retail chain Necxus on its preventative bankruptcy proceedings, initiated 2019.
- Advising leather design-goods retailer, Vacavaliente, and kitchen-fittings and oven manufacturer Ingeniería Gastronómica, among others, in insolvency proceedings initiated during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Naveira Truffat Martínez Abogados (NTMA)
Long a key pillar in the insolvency sector, Naveira Truffat Martínez Abogados (NTMA) saw the September 2019 departure of former name partners Javier Armando Lorente and Jorge López to establish Lorente & Lopez Abogados, and subsequently the early-2020 departure of Claudio Anido to become a sole practitioner. Nevertheless, this sophisticated boutique maintains a sizeable restructuring practice following the March 2020 arrival of new partners Oscar Ferrari and Rafael Mallo, who both joined from the former Ferrari Abogados. They join established market-figures Daniel Truffat, who has strong experience in both judicial and extrajudicial restructuring proceedings; and his fellow co-managing partner Oscar Martínez, a very well-known practitioner in the sector. The pair have been working together for 30 years and have vast experience representing primarily debtors in extrajudicial preventive agreements (APEs), traditional restructuring processes and in local and cross-border bankruptcy proceedings. The team also has experience acting as representative of the insolvency trustees. Valentín Tomás Martínez and Fernanda Soria, both appointed partners in September 2020, are also noted.
Agropecuaria Las Garzas
Estudio Capurro, Rosello, Zaragoza
Estudio Tabasco & Estevez Consultores
Santa María de Martins
- Advised Credimás on its restructuring proceedings.
- Acted for Agropecuaria Las Garzas on its restructuring proceedings.
- Represented Globoaves Argentina in its restructuring proceedings.
Aguirre Saravia & Gebhardt
Aguirre Saravia & Gebhardt’s multidisciplinary team handles a comprehensive range of insolvency, bankruptcy and restructuring cases. The highly experienced group counts both debtors and creditors among its clients and is particularly well-versed in contentious cases. Marcelo Gebhardt’s bankruptcy expertise is supported by skill sets in corporate and arbitration matters.
Allende & Brea houses a capable bankruptcy and restructuring practice, which represents local and international debtors, creditors and acquirers of distressed assets on bankruptcy and restructuring cases. Corporate and commercial law partner Enrique Cristian Fox heads the department and handles both contentious and out-of-court restructurings. Diego Botana is another key contact.
Financiere Desmet – Desmet Ballestra
Chubb Argentina de Seguros
Smith & Nephew
Standard Chartered Bank
- Acted for Desmet Ballestra Group, as a controlling shareholder, on the debt restructuring of Alloco.
- Advised the Argentine companies of the Codere Group on its $1.5bn debt restructuring.
The ‘technically skilled’ group at Beccar Varela is noted for its robust capability in contentious restructurings. Its focus on creditor-side mandates is another key feature of the practice. Litigator Martín Gastaldi heads the department and demonstrates ‘deep knowledge of bankruptcy law’. Federico Sosa is an impressive senior associate.
‘It is a very technically skilled and dedicated team, with the capacity to adapt particular case law to the facts of the most complex litigation.’
‘Martín Gastaldi has a deep knowledge of bankruptcy law and legal precedents.’
Banco de Galicia y Buenos Aires
Carlos Boero Romano
International Finance Corporation (IFC)
- Represented BTG Pactual, as creditor, in a complex claim related to Proteinsa’s restructuring.
- Acted for Citibank on the reorganisation proceedings of Necxus.
Bomchil’s practice is well-weighted between debtor and creditor clients, which it represents on a mix of contentious bankruptcy proceedings and out-of-court restructurings. The team also routinely advises sellers and acquirers on distressed M&A. Corporate and financial services partner Tomás Araya co-heads the department alongside litigator Martín Torres Girotti. Experienced associate Melisa Romero is also recommended.
Banco Comercial de Uruguay – República Administradora de Fondos de Inversión
Armaduras del Sur – Prearmar
Mills Capital Group
Latam USD Exim Investments Fund
- Represented 3 Arroyos, a global food producer and exporter, on its reorganisation procedure.
- Acted for Banco Itaú, as creditor, on the refinancing of an outstanding loan facility with TGLT, through a new facility granted by Banco Itaú Argentina and Banco Itaú Uruguay.
Creditor-side specialist Bulló Abogados continues to advise HSBC Bank Argentina on a significant volume of restructuring matters. The team, which has strong experience in both judicial and extrajudicial restructurings, also regularly acts for corporate creditors. Financial services partner Esteban Gramblicka co-heads the group alongside Gustavo Torassa, who specialises in banking and corporate matters.
HSBC Bank Argentina and HSBC Participaciones
Banco Itaú Argentina
Círculo Cerrado de Ahorro
Telefónica de Argentina
- Advised HSBC Bank Argentina and Zurich in the bankruptcy proceedings of real estate developer, Ribera Desarrollos.
- Represented Telefónica de Argentina in the bankruptcy of postal and logistics company, Organización Coordinadora Argentina.
At Mitrani Caballero & Ruiz Moreno Abogados, lawyers demonstrate ‘extensive knowledge in their specialist areas’. The group advises creditors, debtors, trustees and other stakeholders on a mix of out-of-court reorganisations, judicial proceedings and complex bankruptcy litigation. Administrative law partner Horacio Ruiz Moreno heads the department.
‘The service this firm provides is underpinned by lawyers’ extensive knowledge in their specialist areas, as well as their treatment of clients, which is based on the principles of transparency, sincerity, speed, loyalty and proportionality in terms of the results achieved and the fees charged.’
JBIC – Japan Bank for International Cooperation
Société de Promotion et de Participation pour la Coopération Economique (Proparco)
The Netherlands Development Finance Company (FMO)
Ilumno Licensing Coöperatief and Ilumno Servicios de Colombia
- Advised Ilumno on its $2.4m claim brought against Universidad Kennedy, as part of the latter’s insolvency proceedings.
- Represented the shareholders of Prestolite Electric Incorporated in successfully dismissing an attempted $50m extension of its bankruptcy proceedings.
Pérez Alati, Grondona, Benites & Arntsen’s multidisciplinary group has experience in advising all stakeholders in bankruptcy and restructuring proceedings. It has been mainly active on behalf of creditors of late, particularly banks, and represents both local and international financial institutions. Corporate finance specialist Diego Serrano Redonnet has a strong record in debt restructuring.
Banco Santander Río
ABN AMRO Bank
Banco de la Nación Argentina
Banco Provincia de Buenos Aires
Banco de Galicia y Buenos Aires
BBVA Banco Francés
- Advised Compañia Argentina de Granos (CAGSA)’s steering committee on the financial debt restructuring process of CAGSA and its related company, Molino Cañuelas.
- Acted for an ad hoc committee of bondholders on the restructuring of $180m worth of TGLT’s convertible notes.
Richards, Cardinal, Tützer, Zabala & Zaefferer
Equally adept in debtor and creditor-side work, Richards, Cardinal, Tützer, Zabala & Zaefferer is best known for its niche expertise in advising on restructurings involving public concessions. It also has recent experience in the energy, agribusiness and technology spheres. Key contacts Jorge Tützer and Sebastian Borthwick spearhead many of the multidisciplinary team’s most high-profile cases.
LM Wind Power
Sappi Papier Holding
Baf Latam Trade Finance Fund
- Represented Aguas Argentinas in its ongoing insolvency proceeding.
- Advised MetroGas on its insolvency proceeding, involving approximately $290m in debt.
Salaverri, Burgio & Wetzler Malbran
Salaverri, Burgio & Wetzler Malbran leverages its banking and finance practice to pack a punch in debt restructurings. The firm is typically engaged by creditors, lenders, trustees and financial agents, which it advises on judicial proceedings, out-of-court restructurings and preventive settlements. Dispute resolution partner Damián Burgio co-heads the department alongside Germán Wetzler Malbrán, whose practice is split between litigation and transactional matters.
Zang, Bergel & Viñes Abogados
The increasingly broad practice at Zang, Bergel & Viñes Abogados handles a spread of restructuring, insolvency and distressed M&A matters, with notable experience in the real estate, agribusiness and food sectors. The firm advises both debtors and creditors but is most active on behalf of financial institutions. Group head Francisco Roggero combines banking litigation and transactional experience.
Banco Itaú Argentina
Radiodifusora Buenos Aires
Danone Argentina – Logistica La Serenisima
Aguas Danone de Argentina
Destilería Argentina de Petróleo
IRSA Inversiones y Representaciones
- Represented Itau Unibanco Nassau Branch in the restructuring process of real estate developer, Ribera Desarrollos.
- Acted for radio-station owner, Radiodifusora Buenos Aires, on its judicial reorganisation procedure.