Corporate law (including banking, finance and M&A) in Bahamas

Higgs & Johnson

At Higgs & Johnson, the corporate practice handles the full gamut of commercial, corporate, and banking and finance mandates, with particular expertise in large-scale M&A transactions, high-value financing matters and securitisations involving vessels. Within the broader practice, the commercial transactions group is headed by Zarina Fitzgerald, who has experience in structured finance transactions and initial public offerings, and includes the highly praised Surinder Deal, while Vivienne Gouthro is managing partner of the Freeport office and leads the maritime and aviation group. Christel Sands-Feaste, who is the chair of both the financial services and regulation, and securities and investment funds practice groups, handles asset financing mandates, corporate structuring issues and the structuring and creation of investment funds. Governmental and regulatory approvals are another area of strength for the group, which also advises on anti-money laundering matters and financial services regulatory frameworks. Associate Corey Brown is also highly active in the space.

Other key lawyers:

Corey Brown; Surinder Deal

Testimonials

‘Surinder Deal has been the primary on our business, leading the effort to refinance part of our debt. Her understanding of the very complex financing agreements, our obligations under those agreements, was essential to our ability to refinance the debt and protect our interests.’

‘They provide timely, careful advice that one can rely upon without concern in international transactions. Zarina Fitzgerald exemplifies these qualities.’

Lennox Paton

Led by managing partner Michael Paton, the team at Lennox Paton has an enviable track record in corporate and banking mandates in the region, regularly advising an assortment of large financial institutions, international law firms and high-net-worth individuals. Particularly active in the financial services sector, the department is instructed on a diverse range of matters encompassing complex cross-border M&A, structured and secured financing matters, capital markets issues, regulatory and governmental requirements, securitisations, sophisticated trust structures, tax issues and general corporate and commercial mandates. Elsewhere in the team, deputy head Michelle Neville-Clarke has experience in investment funds, Arthur Seligman specialises in trust and probate instructions, and Castino Sands has particular expertise in investment vehicle-related matters. Another key member of the team is senior associate Dwayne Whylly, who is frequently involved in the firm's most complex matters.

Practice head(s):

Michael Paton

Key clients

Parkland Fuel Corporation

Altice Financing SA

Bahamas Power and Light Limited/Bahamas Rate

Reduction Bond Limited

GNB Financial Group Ltd

Parker Drilling Company Limited

Steiner Leisure Limited

Cosmetics Limited (Target)

OneSpaWorld Holdings Limited

Therium Group Holdings Limited

Finance Atlas AFP LLC

Work highlights

  • Advising Parkland Fuel Corporation on its acquisition of 75% interest in SOL Investment Limited, the largest independent fuel marketer in the Caribbean, including combination agreement, regulatory advice and advice on the financing of the acquisition and security granted thereunder.
  • Advising Steiner Leisure Limited (Seller), Cosmetics Limited (Target) and a shareholder on the sale of the Elemis cosmetics line to L’Occitane from a Bahamian law perspective, specifically on the share purchase agreement, reorganisation of the Bahamian group companies and reorganisation of intercompany and external debt.
  • Advising GNB Financial Group Ltd on its acquisition of 66.7% of FirstCaribbean International Bank from Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC), for a purchase price of $800m.

McKinney, Bancroft & Hughes

Working in conjunction with the firm’s litigation department, the corporate team at McKinney, Bancroft & Hughes has considerable experience across a range of commercial and corporate law matters. In addition to day-to-day advice including assisting with entity establishments and management issues, the group handles regulatory compliance matters relating to liquidations, estate and tax planning work, credit facilities, bond reductions, debt restructurings and corporate restructuring. Names to note are senior partner John Wilson QC, transactional specialist Campbell Cleare III and Kimberley Rolle, who sits as chair of the corporate and commercial transactions practice. The team’s client roster ranges from ultra-high-net-worth individuals and domestic corporations to large multinational companies. April Turner, who leads the financial services and regulation practice, and senior associate Gia Sands are also key names to note.

Practice head(s):

John Wilson QC

Testimonials

‘We have always received a fully professional service, especially in respect to the companies law. We have always received competent and precise support in respect of our actions. The team of McKinney Bancroft & Hughes consist of the qualified persons, who complement each other. That makes us feel fully supported and secured and we are more than happy to entrust McKinney Bancroft & Hughes with our matters. Undoubtedly, McKinney Bancroft & Hughes are a recommendable firm.’

‘April Turner’s conscientiousness makes her stand out. She pays attention to the point of her clients view and always provides the favourable solution to them.’

‘Efficient and all work together well with clients interest at heart. They consult with each other to provide the best possible service and have members on the team that specialise in different areas.’

‘I came to MB&H because of Campbell Cleare who I’ve know for many years. When I began to need legal advice and assistance I knew there was nowhere else for me to go but to this man who had built an outstanding career and reputation. I trust no one more with my personal legal needs. Campbell is well respected in the community and give solid well thought out advice and follows thru in a timely manner.’

‘Gia Sands has become a lawyer that I am very comfortable with and trust. Gia is always available to discuss issues. I can call on her day or night. Gia is quick to respond and quick to see things get done. Gia is kind but firm and operates with caution to ensure advice given is good and proper. I am extremely pleased with Gia’s work and her work ethic.’

‘Deal with Campbell Cleare, Gia Sands and April Turner. They are all knowledgeable in how to address matters and find solutions in a very friendly, responsive, knowledgeable manner.’

‘My lawyer Mr Campbell Clear is someone I trust and respect. I know he works on my behalf. Mr. Cleare has given me sound advice and acts quickly to deal with my various issues. Along with Mr. Cleare I am grateful for Gia Sands who is always available , gives good sound advice in a timely manner. I trust them both completely with any and all my business and personal affairs.’

Key clients

RAV Bahamas Ltd.

Mitsubishi Logistics Corporation

Lyford Holdings N.V.

Neworld One Bay Street Limited