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Advising private and state clients on private and public financings, the practice group at Bufete Aguirre Soc. Civ. is led by Ignacio Aguirre, with strong support from Fernando Aguirre. Especially strong on the lender-side, it has a strong pedigree in cross-border financing transactions, and is also noted for its capital markets capabilities, where it assists clients with bond issuances and debt restructuring. Project finance and operational finance for project companies are particular strengths; the team recently acted for Incofin on around $4m-worth of development loans to several small agro-industrial companies. The department also advised Accion International, the majority shareholder of leading local microfinance bank, Banco Sol, on various shareholder compliance issues.

The ‘attentive, knowledgeable and multidisciplinary’ team at Ferrere acts for lenders and borrowers in equal measure; the bulk of its work is for large foreign clients. Carlos Pinto is the key contact for transactions, and has a particularly strong line in loan agreements for foreign lenders: he acted for Deutsche Bank on a futures and options agreement entered into with the Central Bank of Bolivia, and also advised Northstar Trade & Finance on a $6m loan to logistics company Inbolpack. Lindsay Sykes leads on the regulatory side; clients here include VISA and Bank of America. The department’s recently won clients include BNDES and Société Générale. Regulatory expert Mattias Garrón joined the Santa Cruz office as senior associate in June 2016 from the Bolivian Attorney General’s office.

Guevara & Gutiérrez S.C’s team handles a broad range of banking and finance work but is especially strong in project finance, share purchase agreements and syndicated loan agreements; it has also been increasingly busy in the mining sector. The practice acts primarily on lender-side mandates, where clients include Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), China Development Bank (CDB), International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Citibank. The Santa Cruz-based Enrique Barrios has been advising Simmons & Simmons on banking, securities and investment fund-related regulatory matters. In La Paz, practice head Ramiro Guevara counts banking law, project finance and capital markets among his key strengths.

Security re-purchase transactions, loan agreements and insurance and reinsurance matters are particular strengths of Moreno Baldivieso Estudio De Abogados’ finance department. Ramiro Moreno leads the team with support from senior associate Miguel Angel Jemio, who is particularly strong on securities and financial instruments. Moreno acted for Credit Suisse on security re-purchase transactions with Banco Union and Banco Mercantil Santa Cruz. On the insurance side, Ramiro Moreno and Andrés Moreno advised a group of London market reinsurers on the Bolivian-insurance aspects of the LaMia Flight 2933 crash of November 2016. Lender clients include Banco do Brasil Sucursal Bolivia and Global Partnerships; Samsung C&T is a sponsor-side project finance client.

Sergio Pantoja Navajas is the key partner at Bolsa, Banca y Comercio, a banking and finance boutique based in La Paz. The team acts for local and international clients in a range of areas, including securities, investment banking and real estate leases.

Formerly known as Criales, Urcullo & Antezana, what is now Criales & Urcullo approaches its twentieth anniversary next year; María Eugenia Antezana has moved to of counsel. Increasingly a specialised boutique focusing on high-end and complex work, much of its work comes from referrals. In the finance sector, as well as handling loan agreements for lenders and borrowers, the team covers acquisition finance, commodities finance, asset financing, and insurance matters for large corporations. Its capabilities in capital markets and bond issuances are particularly noted by peers. José Criales and finance and capital markets expert Javier Urcullo are the partners to contact. Andrea Urcullo, who specialises in financial transactions and corporate and commercial law, is also recommended, as is Rubén Acuña on the regulatory side.

Mariana Pereira leads Indacochea & Asociados’ ‘multidisciplinary’, ‘responsive’ and ‘very professional’ practice, which is particularly active on bond issuances, debt restructuring and loan agreements. Recent matters saw Pereira and Andere Indacochea assist Industrias de Aceite with a $100m bond issuance and two financial promissory notes; the pair also advised Tienda Amiga on raising funds via the Bolivian Stock Exchange for operational purposes. In the project finance sub-sector, the ‘very proactive and committed’ Alonso Indacochea advised Riverfront Inversiones on drafting an investment agreement for both public and private investors regarding the $20m financing of an international clinic. The team also often assists clients with regulatory and governance matters.

Though predominantly active on the lender side, Quintanilla, Soria & Nishizawa Soc. Civ. largely acts for sponsors in project finance matters. Eduardo Quintanilla and Santiago Nishizawa head the practice; Nishizawa advised Inter-American Investment Corporation on a senior loan agreement to one company to increase its loans to small-scale grocery stores in Bolivia. He also assisted responsAbility Investments with various regulatory matters. Julio Quintanilla acted for Panamerican SAFI on the issuance, through its subsidiary PyME Progreso Fondo de Inversión Cerrado, of preferred shares in a paper company and a printing company to finance the companies’ working capital.

Led by Mauricio Becerra de la Roca, the practice group at Becerra de la Roca Donoso & Asociados S.R.L. has a strong profile for loans relating to the energy, natural resources and agribusiness sectors. Recent matters include advising Root Capital on financing of projects for companies including Jacha Inti Industrial, Asociación de Caficultores de Taipiplaya and Ecologic Coffee. Other key clients include Archer Daniels Midland and YPFB Refinación. While senior associate Ibling Chavarria left in June 2016, the firm moved rapidly, hiring senior associate José Antonio Callaú, who arrived from labour law boutique RZ Consultores. Miami-based former consultant Patricia Salinas joined as of counsel in January 2017; she will continue to work from Florida.

The team at C.R. & F. Rojas – Abogados is best known for acquisition and aircraft finance, capital raising and insurance matters. Based in La Paz, Maria del Carmen Ballivián is the key contact for aviation and insurance matters, where she advises clients including BUPA Insurance and Clínica Foianini, and assisted Avmax Aircraft Leasing with reviewing and registering several lease and insurance agreements. Also in La Paz, Sandra Salinas and Ariel Morales advised Volvo Construction Equipment on the financing of its $6.8m acquisition of heavy machinery, as well as on the transaction itself; while in Santa Cruz, Elizabeth Landivar acted for Compañía Cervecerías Unidas on a $4.2m capital increase for its subsidiary Bebidas Bolivianas.

Fernando Bedoya and Karla Würth are the key contacts at Würth Bedoya Costa Du Rels Abogados, where clients include ANNONA Sustainable Investment, BTG Pactual Chile, Penta Las Americas and Banco Nacional de Bolivia. Würth is experienced in project finance and capital markets, while Bedoya has considerable banking expertise; senior associate María Pía is also noted for her experience in capital markets and corporate finance. Particularly active in the hydrocarbons sector, the practice is known for its handling of project asset-purchase financings and loan agreement work.

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