Banking and finance in El Salvador
The eight-strong banking, finance and insurance team at Arias handles complex matters across the region, including traditional loans, syndicated loans, capital markets and local issues. Practice head Zygmunt Brett and highly-regarded associate Mariana Nóchez assisted private-investment promotion agency Proparco in two recent highlights, namely granting a $15m loan to Banco Promerica for SME financing, and assisting the same institution, as part of a senior lender syndicate which also included Dutch development bank FMO, the Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC) and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), in a loan agreement to Capella Solar for a solar photovoltaic power plant. Post publication, in December 2019, Brett, Nóchez and associate Antonella Imbers departed the firm, subsequently joining BLP in mid-February 2020.
Consortium Legal's banking and finance department advises local, regional and international clients on a wide array of matters such as note issuances and loan agreements. Key figures Oscar Samour and associate Felipe Aragón acted as local Salvadoran counsel for Credit Suisse's Cayman Island branch in granting a loan of $74m to Western Energy Inc Transport for the construction of a liquified petroleum gas carrier. The team's client base also includes the OPEC Fund for International Development and investment company Symbiotics.
The banking and finance team at BLP advises regional and international companies from the financial services and technology sectors, among others. Department head Ricardo Cevallos, who is dual-qualified in El Salvador and Texas, and key associate Luis Vega are currently assisting FMO on a loan of $90m to be granted to public development bank Fedecrédito. Cevallos also acted for WorldBusiness Capital in the first Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) credit facility to be handled in El Salvador, which required negotiating with the government on tax matters in co-operation with the firm's tax department. Since publication, and in a notable coup for the firm's Salvadoran operation, it hired leading individual Zygmunt Brett and rising star Mariana Nóchez, as partners, and Antonella Imbers as a senior associate, effective February 2020; all three were formerly at Arias.
LatamLex | Guandique Segovia Quintanilla (GSQ)
The banking and finance team at LatamLex | Guandique Segovia Quintanilla (GSQ)’s San Salvador office regularly participates in bond issuances by Salvadoran companies or the Republic of El Salvador. Recent work highlights include partner Ana Reyes and associates Irene Trujillo and Miguel Medina acting as local counsel to CrediQ, CrediQ Inversiones and Inversiones CrediQ Business regarding a financing provided by OPIC and Citibank for SMEs in co-operation with the firm's offices in Costa Rica and Panama. Managing partner Carlos Quintanilla is also a key contact.
Lexincorp's banking and finance team regularly advises clients from the energy industry. Highlights included Enrique Escobar and Antonio Guirola, who was recently promoted to junior partner, acting for Urbano Express on a debt restructuring with Logisgroup. The department also advised Banco General and BlueOrchard Microfincance Fund on a number of matters, including a loan agreement and its guarantees.
Romero Pineda assists clients from an impressive range of industry sectors, including education, energy and insurance, with their banking and finance matters. OPIC, FMO, Copa Airlines and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) are on the client list of the department, which is led by associate Daisy Martinez. In a recent highlight, Martinez assisted SAC Integral with obtaining its first-ever financing of $3m from the International Cooperation and Development Fund of Taiwan. José Roberto Romero is also a key member of the team.
Managing partner José Adolfo Torres and his five-strong team at LatinAlliance El Salvador regularly advise local and regional financial institutions such as Banco G&T Continental, Grupo Prival and Grupo Coinpro. Senior associate Norma Villalobos provided the latter with advice on the legal documentation for a financial lease between the client and Compañía Salvadoreña de Maquinaria and Compañía Guatemalteca de Maquinaria.
Manuel Telles leads the banking and finance team of Guatemalan heavyweight Mayora & Mayora, S.C.'s El Salvador office. In this role, he advised Capella Solar, the local Salvadoran entity of French renewable energy company Neoen, on acquiring a credit from the IDB for a photovoltaic project and an internal restructuring related to the deal. Associate Alejandra Sanchez departed from the firm, while senior associate Jennifer Rodríguez de Arteaga joined the team in her place.