Corporate and finance in Dominican Republic

Headrick Rizik Alvarez & Fernández

Especially active in transactional and finance matters, Headrick Rizik Alvarez & Fernández's practice is also very strong across the spectrum of corporate work. Mary Fernández and Jaime Senior share leadership of the finance practice: recent mandates saw Fernández advise the Blackstone Group on its acquisition of Spanish company Grupo Cirsa, while Senior assisted Banco BHD León with a loan to HES Group for the acquisition of the Silver Sun Gallery and the Embassy Suites Hotel in Santo Domingo. Eileen Jiménez and Sarah De León acted as local counsel to Grupo Diesco on a $73m loan from Goldman Sachs Specialty Lending Group. De León and Roberto Rizik, who is well known for his expertise in M&A and project finance, jointly head the corporate practice.

OMG

OMG's department provides 'practical and timely advice' to investor and lender clients, and is well known for assisting international banks and private equity firms with a broad range of financing matters. Recent mandates include Leonel Melo and Esperanza Cabral advising Banco Dominicano del Progreso on its partial acquisition by the Bank of Nova Scotia; the bank purchased a 97% stake in the client, with an aggregate value of $350m. The pair also advised Altice Dominicana on the $168m sale of its telecoms towers to Phoenix Tower International. Melo and Manuel Troncoso assisted CIFI with structuring a $285m infrastructure investment fund. International practice director Juan Alcalde is very experienced in domestic and cross-border mergers, joint ventures and acquisitions.

Pellerano & Herrera

Commended for its 'professionalism', Pellerano & Herrera’s practice handles a wide spectrum of corporate work and is especially strong in financing mandates. The firm reports an uptick in instructions from the technology and telecoms industries, and in this space, Mariángela Pellerano and Carolina Léon, now a partner, assisted Tofane Global with its acquisition of the international voice carrier business of Altice Europe in France, Portugal and the Dominican Republic. Ricardo Pellerano's recent mandates include advising Grupo Magna on acquiring the distribution rights for BMW in the Dominican Republic. Joanna Bonnelly, who was promoted to partner in 2018, is 'a great leader'; she assisted Uber with its launch of Uber Eats in the country. In 2018, Luis Pellerano left the firm to set up Pellerano Nadal, and in 2019 Alessandra Di Carlo was promoted to partner.

Squire Patton Boggs

Noted for its excellent capabilities in large-scale M&A and regulatory compliance work, Squire Patton Boggs’ Dominican office is also highly regarded for its expertise in project finance, debt capital markets, and asset-based financing; civil aviation and energy are notable sector strengths for the practice. Recent mandates saw Alejandro Peña-Prieto and Awilda Alcántara-Bourdier assist HES Real Estate with its purchase of the Silver Sun Gallery and the Embassy Suites Hotel in Santo Domingo from RDC. In the civil aviation sector, Pedro Gamundi and Rhina Martinez Brea are acting as counsel to Brazilian airline Gol Transportes Aéreos on compliance, corporate and contractual matters relating to the Dominican Republic's aviation regulations. Senior associates Miguel Cano and Joey Núñez Aybar are also active in this sector.

Biaggi Abogados

Biaggi Abogados' practice is noted for its strong capabilities in corporate restructuring, M&A, project finance, contracts, and regulatory compliance matters, among other areas. Name partner Gustavo Biaggi and Rosa María Mena acted as local counsel to Grupo Cirsa on its $2bn acquisition by the Blackstone Group, which included the purchase of the client's assets in the Dominican Republic. Mena also teamed up with Edward Piña to advise Grupo IEMCA on an engineering, procurement and construction contract with Marriott International for the construction of a $20m hotel in Haiti. In the energy sector, Biaggi, Piña, and Mena are assisting Soventix with an $80m joint venture agreement to develop a 1000MW solar power plant. Brenda Morales is also noted.

Castillo y Castillo

Práxedes Castillo Báez leads the corporate practice at Castillo y Castillo, which handles debt capital markets, M&A, regulatory matters, and financing mandates, particularly for clients drawn from the energy, banking, and telecoms sectors. Recent work includes Báez leading the advice to Altice Financing on entering a €93m credit facility agreement. Corporate and finance expert Práxedes Castillo Pérez and banking contracts specialist Luis Pimentel are other names to note. Sebastián Jiménez made partner in March 2019. Other clients include Banco Popular Dominicano, Credit Suisse and Agence Française de Développement.

Jiménez Cruz Peña

Jiménez Cruz Peña reports an uptick in instructions from energy sector clients, and is especially active in high-value fund structuring, cross-border M&A, corporate and financial restructuring, and lender-side financing matters. Katherine Rosa and Marcos Peña Rodríguez, who is noted for his expertise in project finance matters, assisted a prominent financial institution with its $80m financing of the 50MW Guanillo wind farm renewable energy project in the Montecristi province. Vilma Veras is advising Celuisma on the $15m sale of a hotel in Puerto Plata to a local tourism group. Corporate and project finance expert Luis Julio Jimenez is also noted. Other clients include Citibank and Accor.

Medina Garrigó Abogados

Name partner Marielle Garrigó leads the corporate practice at Medina Garrigó Abogados, which counts M&A, project finance and corporate finance as key capabilities. The firm is also adept at acting as local counsel to US-based clients acquiring local entities, and assisting foreign and domestic companies with regulatory work. Recent mandates saw Garrigó and Laura Bobea advise Austrian company Doppelmayr on the public procurement procedure organised by La Barquita Development Unit for the design and construction of Santo Domingo's second cable car line. The pair also assisted Compañía de Electricidad de Puerto Plata (CEPP) with the development of a renewable energy park in the Dominican Republic.

Guzmán Ariza

Guzmán Ariza's department handles a broad spectrum of corporate and finance work from its seven offices across the Dominican Republic, including Santo Domingo, La Romana, Punta Cana and Puerto Plata. Fabio Guzmán Saladín leads the practice; he recently teamed up with La Romana-based Alfredo Guzmán and Christoph Sieger in Punta Cana to advise Hong Kong company Fosun International on its $428m IPO. Guzmán Saladín and associate Pamela Benzán  have also been advising Netflix on corporate and other aspects of the production of a television series project, The I-Land, which is being filmed in the Dominican Republic. Founding partner Fabio Guzmán Ariza is highly regarded for his expertise in real estate matters. Other clients include Deloitte and Ikea.

Pellerano Nadal

Six-strong boutique firm Pellerano Nadal opened its doors in November 2018 and counts transactional matters, finance, restructuring, capital markets and corporate governance among its key capabilities. Project finance is another area of strength and the team also has litigious ability. The firm acts for international and domestic clients, be they borrower or lender, purchaser or target; clients include the International Finance Corporation (IFC), Goldquest, Incoa, American Clothing Exchange, Unicomer, Embraer and Jet Blue. Managing partner Luis Rafael Pellerano's reputation precedes him; highly regarded for his M&A expertise, financings and capital markets, he recently led the local counsel to underwriters Bank of America and JP Morgan Securities on a $2.5bn sovereign bond offer by the Dominican Republic. Fellow founding partner Gustavo Mena acts for banks, financial institutions, and investment trusts; also a key contact, senior counsel Urania Paulino has over 20 years' experience of corporate, banking, capital markets and contractual matters, among others. clients in mandates.

Pereyra & Asociados

Pereyra & Asociados is especially strong in multi-jurisdictional M&A, although it also handles day-to-day corporate work, contractual matters and financing mandates; telecoms, energy, manufacturing, retail, and food and beverages are included in the practice's sector strengths. The 'incredibly knowledgeable and efficient' Luis Miguel Pereyra is 'an outstanding lawyer', and along with practice co-head Emma Mejía Batlle, advised Bank of Nova Scotia on all aspects of its acquisition of Banco del Progreso. Other clients include McDonald's, Starbucks, Mondelēz International, TransUnion, and Eaton Corporation.

Russin, Vecchi & Heredia Bonetti

Celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, Russin, Vecchi & Heredia Bonetti counts multi-jurisdictional corporate and finance work as a core strength. Managing partner Georges Santoni Recio assisted Platinum Equity with its $2.1bn acquisition of diagnostic systems manufacturer LifeScan from Johnson & Johnson. José Maldonado Stark garners praise for his 'great knowledge'; he is advising Siemens on all aspects of the Santo Domingo Metro transportation project, for which the client is the main supplier. Luis Heredia ValenzuelaRoman Medina Diplan in Puerto Plata, and Ariel Jaquez Nuñez  are also key contacts. Monica Villafaña left to join Ulises Cabrera Abogados in March 2019.

Bobadilla Abogados

Bobadilla Abogados' department is well known for its solid experience handling multi-jurisdictional M&A, distribution agreements and restructuring work, and assists domestic and international clients with, among other areas, banking, commercial, and debt capital markets matters. The firm is also recognised for its capabilities in electricity and private ports-related mandates. Andrés Emilio Bobadilla Fernández and María Del Mar Rodríguez are the practice heads. Senior associate Ernesto Bournigal is also noted.

DMK Abogados

Managing partner Enrique De Marchena and Patricia Read jointly head DMK Abogados' practice, which is very well known for its strength in real estate-related matters. Other areas of expertise for the department include cross-border foreign investment, financing and corporate mandates. Recent work includes De Marchena and Read advising Senator Hotels and Resorts on its acquisition of three hotels from RIU Hotels in Puerto Plata. Other clients include Nokia, the Punta Cana Group and Synthesia España.

DR&R Abogados y Consultores Fiscales

With offices in Santo Domingo and Punta Cana, DR&R Abogados y Consultores Fiscales' practice counts tax, labour, tourism and real estate among its sector strengths. Recent matters include assisting Montecristi Solar FV with financing the construction of a 57MW solar power plant. Key names in the team include managing partner Norman De Castro, noted for his expertise in labour, foreign investment, real estate, and international trade law, to name a few areas; Milcíades Rodríguez, who has extensive experience in tax mandates; and Laura Feliz, who is well known for handling corporate mergers, acquisitions, structuring and financing work. At associate level, Fernando Herrera, Cynthia Morales and Miguelina Rodríguez are noted. F&S Solar is another client.

ECIJA DVMS

Counting debt and equity capital markets work as a key capability, ECIJA DVMS is also well versed in high-value financing, international M&A, trust law and structuring mandates. The practice is jointly led by corporate specialist Gabriel Dejarden and Polibio Valenzuela, who is well known for his expertise in financing matters. The team recently assisted Inversiones Zahena with converting a $450m loan from its parent company into shares. Trust law expert Christian Molina is also noted. Other clients include several baseball clubs, Google, Bupa International and I-Med.

Cáceres Torres

Especially active in the construction and banking sectors, Cáceres Torres' team is particularly strong in handling contractual and restructuring work. Managing partner and corporate expert Juan Manuel Cáceres, working in conjunction with Rafael Cáceres and Gelda María Cáceres, is assisting a large group with the restructuring of its real estate assets. Senior associate Laura Consuegra is often active on corporate matters. Clients include the Bank of Nova Scotia, Hylcon and Glencore Canada.

EY Law Central America

EY Law Central America's department is jointly led by Thania Gómez and Julio César Muñoz, who both joined the firm from Proxies Leyes y Negocios in November 2018. The practice handles, among other areas, capital markets, syndicated loan agreements and foreign investment mandates; recent work includes Gómez assisting Consorcio Minero Dominicano with its $60m-bond issuance. Other clients include Ingeniería Estrella, Multimedios del Caribe and Constructora J Fortuna.

RAFUL SICARD POLANCO & FERNÁNDEZ

Raful Sicard & Polanco’s department is very well known for its capabilities in project finance, labour law (including industrial free zone-related issues), corporate real estate, maritime law, securities and aviation matters. María Esther Fernández assisted Aeroméxico Connect with the corporate aspects of implementing its first route between Mexico and the Dominican Republic. Sara Sicard, noted for her expertise in maritime law, telecoms expert Hilda Polanco  and director Sabrina Angulo are also key contacts. Other clients include Condor Airlines, Phillip Morris Dominicana and Delta Airlines.