Real estate finance in Germany

Allen & Overy LLP

While Allen & Overy LLP is predominantly known for its advice to banks, the team's workload also includes an increasing amount of instructions from borrowers with several high-calibre mandates, which is not least due to its strong cooperation with the firm's real estate and M&A teams. The team led by Olaf Meisen specialises in specialist and commercial properties, most notably logistics and hotels, but also covers other asset classes and advises on the full range of financing structures. During the research period, the focus has been on secured financing in particular. Christoph Enderstein is the main contact for financing structures based on bonds, while Stefan Henkelmann advises on securitised products and John Coburn on English law matters. Counsel Stefan Kuhm, who provides extensive advice on national and international real estate financing and restructuring, is another key member of the team.

Practice head(s):

Olaf Meisen

Other key lawyers:

Peter Hoegen; Christoph Enderstein; Stefan Henkelmann; John Coburn; Stefan Kuhm

Testimonials

We trust and value Allen & Overy’s work in real estate finance.

Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance has a very good reputation in the market and is a regular fixture on prominent real estate financings. The team regularly acts for borrowers, including investors, project developers and private equity firms, and covers the full range of asset classes. In addition to office, logistics and residential properties, this also includes specialist properties such as clinics, data centres and hotels. Team head Beda Wortmann and real estate investment specialist Tobias Schulten are frequently recommended by competitors.

Practice head(s):

Beda Wortmann

Other key lawyers:

Tobias Schulten

Ashurst LLP

Ashurst LLP handles all asset classes in real estate financing and refinancing but puts significant emphasis on the logistics and hotel sectors, while also handling project developments. Its clients include national and international investors, financial institutions, project developers, insurance companies and asset management companies. Liane Muschter heads the real estate team, which includes Derk Opitz and Filip Kurkowski, who are the main contacts for financing matters. Bernd Bäumer joined the team as counsel from Noerr in November 2018. As well as his real estate financing expertise, he also advises on real estate transactions and project developments.

Practice head(s):

Liane Muschter

Key clients

EQT Real Estate

Warburg-HIH Invest Real Estate

GEG German Real Estate Group

UniCredit Bank AG

Flins Capital Partners GmbH

Deutsche Bank AG

Société Générale

Hamburg Commercial Bank AG

Landesbank Baden-Württemberg (LBBW)

Bayerische Versorgungskammer (BVK)

Hannover Leasing

Corestate Capital Holding S.A.

NATIXIS Pfandbriefbank AG

DLA Piper

'As well as its excellent technical know-how', DLA Piper also stands out for its 'very good international cooperation between individual teams'. The team focuses on lenders work, but also acts for borrowers, and puts emphasis on the asset classes logistics, hotels, offices and shopping centres as well as project developments. Much of this work pertains to mezzanine financings, which are frequently provided by debt funds, while the team is also experienced in senior financings and refinancings. The 'level-headed, attentive and very precise' Torsten Pokropp heads the practice together with 'honest, straightforward and extremely strong negotiatorFrank Schwem.

Practice head(s):

Torsten Pokropp; Frank Schwem

Testimonials

Sehr gute grenzüberschreitende Kooperation mit einem hohen Maß an Professionalität.

Perfekt aufeinander eingespieltes Team.

Short distances and a constant good atmosphere are some of the advantages.

‘Very accurate and specific knowledge.

Torsten Pokropp has excellent expertise and the ability to differentiate between essential and unnecessary matters in negotiations.

‘Torsten Pokropp follows a solution-oriented approach.

Frank Schwem is reliable, quick, precise and prescient.

Key clients

Aareal Bank AG

pbb Deutsche Pfandbriefbank

Landesbank Hessen-Thüringen Girozentrale (Helaba)

Landesbank Baden-Württemberg (LBBW)

Collmezzo Investment GmbH & Co. KG

CAERUS Debt Investments

Allianz Real Estate GmbH

Work highlights

  • Advice to the Aareal Bank AG on the provision of a senior financing with a value of €447 million for the refinancing of a European hotel portfolio via the Swedish hotel-real estate company Pandox AB.
  • Advice to a vehicle managed by Collineo Asset Management GmbH & Co. KG on the mezzanine financing of a project development of a multi-use property in Vienna.
  • Advice to the Landesbank Hessen-Thüringen (Helaba) on the financing of a purchase of an office building-portfolio via Corpus Sireo Real Estate GmbH for Swiss Life from an international investor.

Greenberg Traurig Germany

The 'all-round professional appearance' of Greenberg Traurig Germany's team and its 'high-quality professional advice', which is based on the team's close cooperation with the real estate law practice, leads to regular instructions on structurings, fiancings, refinancings and restructurings from borrowers and lenders, including alternative lenders. During the research period, the team has been particularly active in project developments, which were often based on forward sales and multi-level financing structures of senior and mezzanine loans. As another key strength, the team also advises on share deal variations. Team head Claudia Hard 'impresses with her ability to analyse complex matters with legal precision and to implement them rigorously'. Anika Mitzkait handles national and international financings in all asset classes, while Kati Beckmann is the main contact for investment law issues.

Practice head(s):

Claudia Hard

Other key lawyers:

Anika Mitzkait; Kati Beckmann; Henning Sieber; Christian Schede

Testimonials

Pragmatic and solution-oriented.

Enormously high devotedness and extremely good market knowledge.

High devotedness and nearly unlimited availability makes the team an invaluable asset in transactions.

The conduct of negotiations is factual and solution-oriented.

The flexible use of resources enables the team to successfully conclude even surprisingly complex transactions in the shortest amount of time.

Key clients

pbb Deutsche Pfandbriefbank

Landesbank Baden-Württemberg (LBBW)

Berlin Hyp AG

Tristan Capital Partners LLP

Oxford Properties

Benson Elliot Capital Management LLP

Linus Capital

EDGE Technologies

Velero Partners GmbH

Dream Global REIT

Swiss Life

Work highlights

  • Advice to Ares Management Limited on the financing of the purchase of the IKB Deutsche Industriebank headquarters in Düsseldorf by the Landesbank Hessen-Thüringen (Helaba).
  • Advice to the debtor Brookfield on the financing of the purchase of the SI-Centrum in Stuttgart.
  • Advice to Linus Capital on a bridging loan of a Berlin development of two residential towers (Max und Moritz Wohntürme).

Hengeler Mueller

Hengeler Mueller regularly acts for borrowers in financing individual property and portfolio transactions, project developments and heritable building rights as well as in refinancing matters. The team covers commercial, logistics, hotel and residential work. Real estate financing and refinancing expert Martin Geiger, who divides his time between Frankfurt and London, and M&A and financing transactions specialist Daniel Kress are the main contacts.

Other key lawyers:

Georg Frowein; Martin Geiger; Daniel Kress; Heinrich Knepper

Key clients

QUINCAP Investment PartnersGmbH & Co.KG

J.P. Morgan Asset Management

Aermont Capital LLP

BGP Investment S.à.r.l

Asia Pacific Land (APL)

Work highlights

  • Advice to BGP Investment S.à.r.l on the financing of the purchase of heritable building rights from the Vivacon insolvency estate.
  • Advice to Aermont Capital LLP on a development financing, which was a condition for the legal reorganisation of the building.
  • Advice to Blackstone Group International Partners LLP on the € 319 million-refinancing of a commercial property in Frankfurt.

Noerr

Noerr's team is best known for its work for banks but it also acts for borrowers and covers all asset classes. Its workload includes the financing of individual properties, portfolios and project developments as well as M&A-driven financings. Andreas Naujoks heads the banking and finance group and frequently takes the lead in real estate financing work together with Karsten Fink and Sebastian Bock. Senior associate Doreen Pape regularly assists with national and international financing transactions and is also well versed in financial supervisory law.

Practice head(s):

Andreas Naujoks

Other key lawyers:

Sebastian Bock; Karsten Fink; Tom Beckerhoff; Doreen Pape

White & Case LLP

White & Case LLP's client portfolio includes several well-known financial institutions as well as corporates, which regularly instruct the team to assist with financing and refinancing matters covering various asset classes. The team has particular expertise in sale-and-lease-back structures, syndicated loans and commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS). Thomas Flatten heads the practice.

Practice head(s):

Thomas Flatten

Other key lawyers:

Florian Degenhardt

Testimonials

For years we have been working intensively and trustingly together with Dr Thomas Flatten. Both regarding pure real estate finance and classic corporate finance. We particularly appreciate the efficiency and interdisciplinary strength at the intersection between real estate and corporate finance. This is where, in our opinion, Dr Flatten has a competitive edge compared to other firms whose partners do not have the same breadth of expertise.’

It is the broad practice of Dr Flatten and his team which distinguishes the firm from others, where each partner is responsible for a different product.’

Key clients

Commerzbank AG

Consus Real Estate AG

Tishman Speyer

Deutsche Pfandbriefbank AG

Work highlights

  • Advice to the Commerzbank AG as coordinator, bookrunner and mandated lead arranger on the provision of a funding line for Vonovia Finance B.V. with a loan volume of €1 billion.
  • Advice to the Deutsche Pfandbriefbank AG on the financing of a property portfolio of the Vonovia SE in East-Germany.

CMS

CMS is experienced in acquisition and refinancing transactions, including associated corporate matters, and applies this expertise particularly in mandates pertaining to project developments, office, logistics and commercial properties. Markus Pfaff and Marc Seibold jointly head the team.

Practice head(s):

Markus Pfaff; Marc Seibold

Other key lawyers:

Axel Dippmann; Jens Moraht; Peter Ruby; Herbert Wiehe

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer advises national and international investors on financing matters pertaining to real estate transactions and project developments and covers all asset classes. Johannes Conradi heads the real estate practice from Hamburg, which includes main contact for real estate financing Frank Laudenklos.

Practice head(s):

Johannes Conradi

Other key lawyers:

Frank Laudenklos

Gleiss Lutz

Gleiss Lutz's real estate financing practice works hand in hand with its colleagues from the real estate and M&A practices and therefore regularly assists with financing matters arising from real estate transactions and project developments, which span various asset classes. The team led by Tim Weber frequently acts for banks but also counts investors and project developers among its clients. Real estate and project finance expert Burkhard Jäkel is another key member of the team.

Practice head(s):

Tim Weber

Other key lawyers:

Burkhard Jäkel; Johannes Niewerth; Christian Steinke

Goodwin

The 'very competent and experienced team' at Goodwin has 'established itself in the market within a very short period of time' and is considered a good contact for project development and portfolio transaction financings, acting for both lenders and borrowers. Team head Stephan Kock is praised for his 'outstanding knowledge of the market' and counsel Andreas Mallin is also recommended and handles a wide range of real estate financing work.

Practice head(s):

Stephan Kock

Other key lawyers:

Andreas Mallin

Testimonials

Excellent quality throughout.

Stephan Kock conducts negotiations prudently, and is therefore able to lead even confrontationally led negotiations to a compromise that is accepted by all.

Key clients

Hamburg Commercial Bank AG

NATIXIS

Landesbank Baden-Württemberg (LBBW)

GreenOak Real Estate

Berlin Hyp AG

Slate Asset Management L.P.

Medical Properties Trust, Inc. (MPT)

Work highlights

  • Advice to Ekistics Property Advisors LLP on the partial financing of the takeover and development of a property at the Industriepark Nord in Fritzlar by the project developer Hellmann Investment in the course of a Share Deal.
  • Advised the Landesbank Baden-Württemberg (LBBW) on the construction financing of the properties ensemble Track close to the main train station in Berlin.
  • Ongoing advice to Slate Asset Management L.P. on the financing of portfolio acquisitions.

GSK Stockmann

With a firm-wide focus on real estate, GSK Stockmann is considered a good contact for lenders and borrowers, including banks, investment and asset management companies, project developers and real estate investment managers, for various transaction and construction-related financing issues, such as mezzanine financings, which are a particular strength of the team. It advises on all asset classes, but with Alma Franke co-heading the practice with Stefan Koser, the group has particular expertise in the hotel segment, while also handling regular instructions on residential project developments. Financing structures under Luxembourg law are regularly dealt with in conjunction with the firm's Luxembourg office.

Practice head(s):

Alma Franke; Stefan Koser

Key clients

AXA Investment Managers

Westbrook Partners LLC

Groß & Partner Grundstücksentwicklungsgesellschaft mbH

Brookfield Europe Asset Management Limited

HANSAINVEST Real Assets GmbH

Art-Invest Real Estate

LaSalle Investment Management

Aberdeen Standard Investments Deutschland AG

Work highlights

  • Advice to AXA Investment Managers on the financing of the acquisition of the office building Techno Campus Berlin at the Berlin Siemensstadt from Caleus Capital Investors.
  • Advised Groß & Partner Grundstücksentwicklungsgesellschaft mbH on the sale of the Aqua Tower in the high-rise building district FOUR to the investment company Union Investment.
  • Advice to an office fund managed by Art-Invest Real Estate on the purchase of a multi-tenant-office building in the Frankfurt Ostend from Generali Real Estate S.p.A.

Hogan Lovells International LLP

As an integral part of the banking and finance practice, Hogan Lovells International LLP's real estate finance team specialises in national and international real estate financings and refinancings. Recently the team has been particularly active in hotel financings and developments but it also handles other asset classes and demonstrates particular expertise in sale-and-lease-back structures. Its interdisciplinary work as well as its close cooperation with the firm's Luxembourg office constitutes an attractive offering for banks and non-bank lenders, such as insurance companies and debt capital funds, as well as for borrowers including project developers and real estate investors. Katlen Blöcker and Roland Bomhard co-head the practice, which lost Patrick Mittmann to Baker McKenzie in August 2018, but, with the appointment of Martin Haase in January 2019, the team now includes an experienced partner for specialist real estate work (holiday parks) as well as for commercial and industrial properties.

Practice head(s):

Katlen Blöcker; Roland Bomhard

Other key lawyers:

Christian Herweg; Marc Werner; Martin Günther; Stefanie Kern; Martin Haase

Key clients

Berlin Hyp AG

BNP Paribas Asset Management

CapitaLand Commercial Trust

Deutsche Pfandbriefbank AG

DZ Bank AG

Union Investment

Work highlights

  • Advice to the Berlin Hyp AG on the refinancing of the Ku’Damm Eck in Berlin.
  • Advice to the Olbos Group and Trimelon on the purchase and financing of several portfolios of heritable building plots.
  • Advice to the Deutsche Pfandbriefbank AG as creditor on different cases of property financing, in particular on transactions and share deals with a foreign reference.

Taylor Wessing

Working in close conjunction with various other offices and practice groups enables Taylor Wessing's team to advise a broad client base, including real estate financiers, sponsors and investors, on a wide range of real estate financing issues covering all asset classes. This leads to a steady stream of instructions on real estate acquisition and development financings, sale-and-lease-back transactions, senior, mezzanine, CMBS and RMBS financings as well as the restructuring of such financings. Peter Seemann heads the team, which includes the recommended Jens Wiesner, who provides wide-ranging advice on banking and finance law.

Practice head(s):

Peter Seemann

Other key lawyers:

Hauke Bornschein; Jens Wiesner; Claus Goedecke

Testimonials

Has very good communication and moderating skills.

Key clients

Bayerische Landesbank (BayernLB)

Deutsche Hypothekenbank AG

DZ HYP AG

Hamburg Commercial Bank AG

Landesbank Hessen-Thüringen Girozentrale (Helaba)

Investec Bank PLC

Natixis Pfandbriefbank AG

Raiffeisen Bank International AG

Sparkasse Holstein

PGIM Real Estate

Solidare Real Estate Group

Summit Real Estate

Tristan Capital Partners LLP

Vonovia SE

Work highlights

  • Advice to the Hamburg Commercial Bank AG on the partial financing of the acquisition of property price for the project Koryfeum in Unterschleißheim; the buyer was the investment manager and project developer FREO Group.
  • Advised the Hamburg Commercial Bank AG on the long-term refinancing of the properties of the Luxembourgish fund Greenman OPEN.
  • Advice to a banking consortium centered around the Sparkasse Holstein as documentation centre on the €56-million financing of the construction project Berger Feld II and the extension of the sports facility of the FC Gelsenkirchen-Schalke 04 e.V.