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Chile > Energy and natural resources > Electricity/oil and gas > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

Index of tables

  1. Energy and natural resources: electricity
  2. Energy and natural resources: oil and gas
  3. Leading lawyers
  4. Next generation lawyers

Leading lawyers

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Carey’s ‘does an outstanding job across the board; the team always ensures the right lawyers are available to answer clients’ questions and provides a very high level of Chilean legal knowledge’. The firm’s broad practice covers oil and gas, transmission and distribution matters, and energy project development, including tender processes for power supply and transmission infrastructure, and litigious and regulatory matters. Other areas of strength include land rights, electric and maritime concessions, indigenous affairs and water rights. Recent transactional highlights include advising Masisa on the $15m sale of its CoGen power plant to Neoelectra, which included both biomass and water supply agreements; and acting for Sonnedix Chile Holding on the $11.8m acquisition of a majority stake in Cox Energy Chile. Juan Francisco Mackenna, JosĂ© Miguel Bustamante, and water law specialist Alberto Cardemil are the names to note.

Widely respected for its energy-sector capabilities, Claro & Cia.’s practice typically represents clients in the development, construction, operation, acquisition and financing of energy and infrastructure projects. Recent mandates saw Rodrigo OchagavĂ­a and Ariel Mihovilovic lead advice AES Corporation subsidiary Alto Maipo, and AES Gener (as sponsor), on all aspects of the development and $2.2bn refinancing of a 531MW hydropower plant and related interconnection and transmission assets; and JosĂ© Luis Ambrosy and NicolĂĄs Eyzaguirre act for Elecnor-affiliate Celeo Redes OperaciĂłn Chile in a $600m project bond issue. Ambrosy’s ‘strengths include great knowledge of all the issues involved in the financing of infrastructure projects’. Luisa NĂșñez and senior associate Gerardo Otero are also highly regarded.

Prieto has longstanding experience in the energy (including renewable energy), gas and water and sewage sectors. The firm also fields lawyers with regulatory and litigation experience, including administrative procedures, and handles the full range of disputes and arbitration in the energy sector. A team led by Jaime RĂ­os advised Portuguese electricity and natural gas transport-infrastructure operator, Redes Energeticas Nacionais (REN Portugal), on its $180m acquisition of a 42.5% stake in Electrogas’ share capital. Juan Tagle led advice to Brookfield Asset Management PICA on a complete due diligence of the Chilean assets of TerraForm Power; while Fernando Bravo and JosĂ© AndrĂ©s Pascual are advising Engie EnergĂ­a Chile on the $10m EPC contract and all necessary permitting for the development of an ash deposit project dubbed "Cerro Gris". Senior partner Claudio Undurraga is also a key contact.

Barros & Erråzuriz advises on energy contracts, regulatory issues, project finance and dispute resolution. The team has particular expertise in acting for generation and transmission companies and is also noted for its experience in the renewables sector, where it has advised on a range of hydroelectric, wind and solar-energy projects. Headline matters saw Fernando Garrido lead a team advising Interconexión Eléctrica (ISA) on all aspects - regualtory, contractual, electrical, environmental etc.- of the development of the $1.2bn Cardones-Polpaico transmission line. Name partner José Tomås Erråzuriz is also a key contact, and Cristóbal Pellegrini is a well-regarded senior associate.

CMS Carey & Allende fields lawyers who are specialists in generation, distribution and transmission matters. In a highlight mandate, Luis Felipe Arze led advice to ElĂ©ctricas de MedellĂ­n (IngenierĂ­a y Servicios) on the construction of the $1.2bn Cardones-Polpaico transmission line, which will help connect Chile’s northern and central energy grids. Jorge Allende Z, Aldo Poblete and Fernando de CĂĄrcer are also key advisers.

DLA Piper BAZ|NLD ‘has strong and excellent technical knowledge’ and provides ‘accurate advice’. The practice is particularly noted for the development of power plants and associated infrastructure matters and has been heavily involved in transactional activity in the solar generation sub-sector, of late. The practice also participates in cross-border and regional energy transactions and disputes as part of the firm’s regional network. Department head Felipe Bahamondez is a well-known specialist in natural resources and regulatory matters. Diego Peña and Paulina FarĂ­as are notable senior associates.

Regularly advising large local and international energy companies in Chile, Guerrero Olivos fields ‘a very good team of lawyers’ who are experts in energy (including non-conventional renewable energy and carbon credit deals), environmental matters (including land and mining rights) electricity and water law, regulatory issues and project finance. Hernán Felipe Errázuriz is highly rated and Sebastián Abogabir ‘knows how to solve problems’.

Larrain y Asociados ‘provides good-quality work that is precise and delivered on time for a reasonable cost’. The firm’s energy and natural resources expertise includes mining, oil and gas, electricity and water and the practice recently acted for Sonnedix on the development of several solar plants in northern Chile, including associated regulatory matters. Jorge Granic is widely respected, particularly on the finance-side; CristĂłbal MorandĂ© is ‘serious and available’; of counsel Ricardo Peña is also a key member of the practice.

Morales & Besa’s Carlos Silva advises several infrastructure and energy project developers on the structuring and financing of their projects; managing partner Eugenio Besa is also a primary contact for energy matters. Recent matters include advising WPD Chile on structuring wind farm projects; and acting for X-Elio (formerly known as Gestamp Solar) on the negotiation and drafting of interconnection agreements for a photovoltaic (PV) project.

Allende Bascuñån & Cía assists with water rights, electricity and power matters, particularly regarding transmission and interconnection issues. The team also advises on PV projects and power purchase agreements (PPAs); clients include Electroconsultores, which it advises on negotiations and contractual issues on an ongoing basis. Felipe Bascuñån is team head and Mauricio Viñuela is also well regarded. Key support comes from associate Daniel Gallardo B, Luis Fernando López C and Agustín Alessandri B.

Aninat Schwencke & Cia’s practice covers energy-related transactions and regulatory issues, as well as energy disputes. The team’s representative experience includes advising on the development of PV projects. Nicolás Atkinson is the name to note.

Arteaga Gorziglia & Cia Abogados is recommended for EPC contracts, transmission issues, energy project financing, greenfield energy matters, and PPAs, as well as project development and project-acquisition agreements and LNG sector issues. The team advised Acciona Energia on the negotiation of a PPA to supply renewable energy to Chilean retailer Falabella. The names to note are Ignacio Arteaga E, Luciano Cruz and MarĂ­a Fernanda Brahm M, along with associate Ignacio DĂ­az S. Ricardo IrarrĂĄzabal left the firm to become Undersecretary at the Ministry of the Environment.

Bofill, Mir & Álvarez Jana is recommended for renewable energy and transmission matters; and the practice is supported by the firm’s regulatory, dispute resolution and mining law groups. Working in conjunction with an Australian law firm, the team advised Pacific Hydro on the implementation of an international banking consortium’s $500m global funding for a portfolio of renewable energy assets throughout Chile and Australia. Pablo Mir, Rony Zimerman and of counsel María Paz Cerda are the recommended advisers; Jorge Lembeye exited to found Lembeye & Cía.

Cariola Díez Pérez-Cotapos acts on an ongoing basis for private equity fund Southern Cross Group, which as part of its portfolio undertakes greenfield thermal power plant development in Chile. The practice is increasingly active advising both foreign and local companies on developing greenfield renewable energy projects, such as mini-hydro, solar and wind farms. Gonzalo Jiménez and Martín Astorga are experienced practitioners.

Cubillos Evans Abogados’ department heads are JosĂ© Miguel HernĂĄndez, Eugenio Evans, Arturo UrzĂșa and Aurelio de Diego. The practice group’s workload includes electricity transmission and energy generation projects. Other representative areas are project finance, bidding procedures, energy-related disputes and regulatory issues, and PPAs. Ongoing mandates include advising WPD Chile on its energy matters, particularly regarding electricity concessions and easement negotiations. Gonzalo Cubillos is also highly rated.

Philippi Prietocarrizosa Ferrero DU & Uría’s energy practice covers M&A transactions, project finance, off-take agreements, onshore and offshore engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contracts, and operation and maintenance agreements, as well as energy regulatory matters. Recent matters include advising EDF Energies Nouvelles and Parque Eólico Cabo Leones I on the financing for a wind farm. Carlos Alberto Reyes and Eduardo Escalona are the key advisers.

Urenda, Rencoret, Orrego y Dörr advises on project finance, obtaining permits, administrative procedures, and power plant construction agreements. Other areas of note include water rights related to the development of projects and contentious energy matters. Recent mandates include advising Empresa Eléctrica Perquilauquén on the development of a hydroelectric project. Managing partner Sergio Orrego is highly regarded, and Sebastiån García and Javiera Vicuña are notable associates.

Baraona Fischer Spiess advises energy producers and distributors, engineering companies and lenders on M&A, project finance and structured finance deals; the team has been particularly active in clean energy matters. Federico RodrĂ­guez is experienced in energy-related regulatory and transactional matters.

Garrigues Chile’s Luis Felipe Merino has extensive experience in advising energy companies on corporate issues and the development of high-profile, high-value projects; and Pedro García, who ‘consistently displays a solid grasp of strategic dimensions’, is experienced in the financing of energy projects. The team recently advised Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation and Natixis on a loan to Glenfarne Group subsidiary Prime Energía, for the expansion of a thermal power project. Senior associate Eduardo Diez is highly regarded.

Grasty Quintana Majlis & Cia. provides ongoing advice to Joule Chile on the constitution and development of water use rights for the development of hydroelectric projects in Chile. In the electricity sector, the practice advises on hydroelectric and thermo-electric plants, wind farms, and natural gas projects. Hugo Prieto and managing partner Juan Turner are the principal contacts.

Honorato Delaveau is experienced in advising on the development, construction, operation and maintenance of energy projects, including solar generation. The practice also handles energy-M&A, finance and regulatory matters. The key names are Gonzalo Delaveau and of counsel Rodrigo Delaveau.

The recently formed Jara Del Favero & Ried Fabres Abogados is highly regarded for the establishment of water rights, obtaining Water Code-related permits, and acting before courts and governmental agencies. The team also assists with the creation of water user organisations and agreements for water use rights for hydroelectric power generation. Gabriel Del Favero and senior associate Hipólito Zañartu are experienced advisers.

Quintanilla & Busel Niedmann’s ‘provides a good, valuable service’. The firm’s energy law expertise includes projects, regulatory matters, corporate issues, and litigation. The practice is assisting Andes Power (on an ongoing basis) with the development of a hydroelectric plant in southern Chile. Bernardo Busel Niedmann is ‘attentive to clients’ needs and adapts to their requirements’; Daniela MartĂ­nez GutiĂ©rrez ‘knows the regulations well and identifies the key issues for clients’; and Jorge Quintanilla HernĂĄndez is also an experienced practitioner.

Rodriguez Rosende Abogados recently assisted DERCO with the negotiation and execution of a PPA with Enel DistribuciĂłn Chile. The team also acts in energy-related disputes. Eduardo RodrĂ­guez del RĂ­o, Hugo Rosende HernĂĄndez and Eduardo RodrĂ­guez Ugarte are the names to note.

Vergara y Cia fields energy law practitioners whose expertise includes solar plant development and transactional energy matters. The firm is also noted for water law issues and regulatory matters. The principal advisers are Alejandro Vergara Blanco, Daniela Rivera Bravo and Gonzalo Muñoz Escudero.

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