Banking and finance in Honduras

Aguilar Castillo Love

Project finance is a key area of expertise for the experienced banking and finance team at regional firm Aguilar Castillo Love, which has advised financial institutions and developers on the funding of significant recent projects in the renewable energy sector. In addition to assisting regional and international banks, financial institutions and corporate borrowers with corporate finance and commercial investments, the team has also developed its practice in the growing systems payment and e-money sectors. Managing partner Enrique Rodríguez Burchard leads the team with Juan José Alcerro Milla, who is noted for his expertise in the financing of energy, infrastructure and real estate projects; Carolina Aguirre Larios also specialises in project finance. Another notable team member is associate Ondina María Santos, who is particularly experienced in fintech matters.

Practice head(s):

Enrique Rodríguez Burchard; Juan José Alcerro Milla

Testimonials

‘Juan José Alcerro Milla is a person of integrity, with an admirable work ethic. His colleagues follow his example.’

Key clients

The Provident Bank

Grupo Financiero Ficohsa

Aura Minerals

Inversiones de Generación Eléctricas (INGELSA)

Astra Honduras

Work highlights

  • Advised Canadian mining conglomerate Aura Minerals on a $150m IPO and follow-on offering on Brazil’s B3 stock exchange.
  • Assisted renewable energy investment fund Deetken Impact Sustainable Energy with the financing and acquisition of the 7.5MW Betulia hydroelectric project on the north coast of Honduras.
  • Advised US bank Provident Bank on the provision of financing of $8m to  snack food manufacturing company Corporación Dinant for the purchase of tortilla manufacturing equipment.

Arias

Central American firm Arias is highly experienced in multi-jurisdictional financial transactions, particularly between clients in Honduras and the US. The team predominantly advises lender-side clients, acting for banks, financial institutions and financial services companies, both domestic and international. Notable areas of strength include aviation finance and project finance; among a number of highlights, the team advised a Canadian fund on the financing of a submarine telecoms network between La Ceiba on the northern coast of Honduras and the island of Roatán. Managing partner Evangelina Lardizábal leads the team alongside Mario Agüero, who has notable experience in cross-border transactions, as well as in financial matters in regulated sectors including energy and telecoms.

Practice head(s):

Evangelina Lardizábal; Mario Agüero

Key clients

Tegra

CASEIF III

Leader Global Solutions

1st Source Bank

Cordaid

International Development Bank

Work highlights

  • Advised Tegra, as debtor, and its local subsidiaries, New Holland Lingerie de Honduras and Hew Holland Apparel de Nicaragua, as guarantors, on the amendment of a financing agreement entered into with several creditors, collateral securities agent and administrative agents.
  • Advised Canadian fund CASEIF III on the provision of funds to a local Honduran corporation, Bay Islands Telecommunication (BITEL), for the construction, operation and development of a submarine fibre optic communications network between La Ceiba and the island of Roatán.
  • Assisted 1st Source Bank in Honduras with the review of all guaranty agreements, the preparation of a Honduran note and issue of a capacity and legality legal opinion in regards to an aircraft financing agreement.

Consortium Legal

Highlighted for its 'commitment and professionalism', the banking team at Consortium Legal is experienced in a wide range of financial matters, including corporate and consumer financing, M&A transactions in the financial services sector, securities issuances, electronic banking, and regulatory and compliance issues. The regional firm is also well placed to advise local and foreign banks on cross-border financial transactions in Central America, recently advising Cerberus Business Finance on financing Lowell Acquisition's purchase of a series of companies in Honduras, El Salvador and Nicaragua. Managing partner José Ramón Paz Padilla, Gustavo Leon-Gómez, whose broad practice covers project finance and regulatory matters, and banking, capital markets and insurance specialist José Ramón Paz Morales jointly lead the sizeable team, which also includes the experienced José Rafael Rivera.

Practice head(s):

José Ramón Paz Padilla; Gustavo León-Gómez; José Ramón Paz Morales

Testimonials

‘One of the assets of Consortium is that it has a multi-disciplinary team, which gives it a competitive advantage compared to other firms.’

‘The standout feature of the firm is that they follow up on matters and seek out the opinions of colleagues when necessary.’

‘In our experience, the lawyers at Consortium demonstrate, first and foremost, commitment and professionalism. In addition, they have a clear perspective of the strategy in every case, technical knowledge, and the ability to manage difficult counter-parties and high-pressure situations, focusing first of all on mitigating risks, planning for contingencies and the orderly planning and execution of the matter.’

‘The following lawyers stand out for their professionalism and sense of ethics, technical knowledge, team work and collaboration with the client, and ability to achieve successful outcomes and work well under pressure – Gustavo León Gómez, José Rafael Rivera and José Ramón Paz Morales.’

Key clients

Banco de Honduras

Cerberus

Credit Suisse

Confianza

CABEI

Work highlights

  • Acting as Honduran counsel to Credit Suisse Securities (USA), Itau BBA USA Securities, Safra Securities and XP Investments US as the agents of the initial primary and secondary public offering of $155m of Brazilian depository receipts by Aura Minerals on the B3.
  • Acting as Honduran counsel to Credit Suisse, Cayman Islands Branch on a $15m TBMA/ISMA global master repurchase agreement with Financiera Comercial Hondureña (Bank Ficohsa).
  • Advised Cerberus Business Finance on granting a syndicated loan of $90m to Lowell Acquisition to finance the acquisition of a series of New Holland companies in Central America.

BLP

Regional firm BLP is active in a range of financial matters, with a strong track record in assisting clients in the energy and environmental sectors; the team recently advised impact investment fund eco.business Fund on a $20m loan to Banco Atlántida Honduras to expand access to finance for sustainable businesses in the country. The team is also experienced in advising banks, financial institutions and aviation and consumer goods companies, both local and international, on financial transactions. Project finance is an additional area of strength; practice head José Miguel Álvarez has advised on the financing of wind, hydroelectric and solar power projects in the country, as has energy sector specialist Karla Aguilar.

Practice head(s):

José Miguel Alvarez

Key clients

BID Invest

Banco Financiera Comercial Hondureña

Eco.business Fund

Energía Eólica de Honduras

Avianca

Quala

Unilever

Walmart

PepsiCo

Boquitas Fiesta

Producción de Energía Solar y Demás Renovables (PRODERSSA)

Work highlights

  • Advised BID Invest on the granting of a credit facility of $96m to Elcatex and San Juan Textiles, textile enterprises located in Honduras.
  • Assisted Banco Ficohsa in the granting of a syndicated loan of $43.5m to Inmobiliaria Hondureña del Valle (INHDELVA), a textile company owned by Grupo Kattan, for the construction and operation of an industrial plant.
  • Advised Avianca on the subscription of a senior secured convertible term loan agreement for $250m entered into by Avianca Holdings and guaranteed by Isleña de Inversiones, a subsidiary of Avianca Holdings.

García & Bodán

Cross-border financial transactions make up a significant part of the workload at regional firm García & Bodán, which offers services throughout Central America, acting for both international and local financial institutions. The team also has notable strength in capital markets matters, recently advising the government of Honduras on a $600m sovereign bond issuance on the international capital markets, and in August 2021 the firm launched a dedicated regional capital markets practice. Project finance and banking regulation are other areas of expertise. Managing partner Vanessa Oquelí leads the team, bringing additional experience in tax issues to the table, and also acts as regional director of the capital markets practice. Godofredo Siercke is noted for his knowledge of financial regulatory matters and the financing of projects, particularly in the energy sector.

Practice head(s):

Vanessa Oquelí

Work highlights

  • Assisted the Secretary of Finance of the Republic of Honduras with the placement of $600m sovereign bonds on the international capital markets.
  • Advised Régimen de Aportaciones Privadas (RAP), a private financial institution of social interest in Honduras, on the possibility of setting up a portfolio management trust to finance the acquisition of homes.