Energy and infrastructure in Israel
Specialising in the energy sector, Agmon & Co. Rosenberg Hacohen & Co. has 'in-depth legal knowledge', which it pairs with 'a practical understanding of how the legal framework factors into a client's day to day'. Led by Dan Hacohen, the team has particular expertise in financing transactions in the energy sector. Of particular note, Hacohen is acting for the two consortiums operating the Tamar and Leviathan natural gas fields - Israel's two largest natural gas reserves; he advises the consortiums, which include names such as Noble Energy and Delek Drilling, on all of their financing and domestic and international gas sales agreements. In one matter, Hacohen and Uri Rosenberg advised Delek Drilling on a transaction led by JP Morgan and HSBC for a limited recourse financing, which was backed by the company's interest in the Leviathan gas field; at roughly $2bn, this is the largest such financing ever completed in Israel. As a complement to its energy-sector expertise, the firm has considerable strength in securities law and capital markets transactions. As an example, Ran Shalom advised Navitas Buckskin Financing, a financing entity for the Buckskin oil project in the Gulf of Mexico, on two series of project bonds, which raised a total of NIS720m. Eddie Ashkenazi is also recommended.
Fischer Behar Chen Well Orion & Co is strong across a range of legal disciplines and is well positioned to advise various market participants throughout the full life cycle of an energy or infrastructure project. The firm has an especially active lender side practice, which regularly acts for institutional lenders and domestic and international banks in relation to large project financing transactions. Gilad Winkler and Hagit Horowitz advised Harel Insurance Company and Migdal Insurance Company on the NIS800m financing for a 120MW PV power plant in Zeelim, and are advising Clal Insurance on the provision of a mezzanine loan to the concessionaire of the Carmel Tunnels project. The team is also engaged by active project companies, and the pair are advising a subsidiary of Shikun & Binui Renewable Energy on the preparation of contract documents for the construction, operation and maintenance of the first-ever privately owned gas-based peak power plant in Israel. Also of note, the team is advising a bidding consortium comprising Miridiam, Shikun & Binui and Egged Holding on its participation in a tender for the financing, design, construction, operation and maintenance of the J-Net system on the Jerusalem Metropolitan Light Rail.
Acting for project companies, contractors and financiers, Goldfarb Seligman & Co. has 'extensive knowledge of commercial law and domestic regulations', and also has 'the international relationships needed to draw repeat work in mega infrastructure projects'. In the infrastructure space, Rami Sofer is acting for Ayalon Highways in relation to dozens of planned and ongoing projects. In just two examples, Sofer is advising on the NIS4bn Fast Lanes project aimed at reducing congestion through the use of shuttle transport, and is advising on the NIS3bn Rapid City project, which involves the creation of dedicated public transport routes with the cooperation of 17 different local municipalities. Another key figure in the team is Orit Farkash-Hacohen, who has expertise in commercial, financing and regulatory matters in the energy sector. Farkash-Hacohen advised Triple-R Energy on the sale to the Noy Fund of its shares in a pumped storage project in Kochav Hayarden. Additionally, on the lender side, Farkash-Hacohen advised an underwriting consortium including Morgan Stanley and Citibank on the IPO of Energean Oil & Gas on the LSE. The team is also acting for a major international contractor in relation to one of the country's most high-profile transport infrastructure projects.
The team at Gornitzky & Co. is 'responsive, professional and very business oriented', and with strengths in finance, litigation and project development, 'the group's ability to provide a comprehensive legal service is a great plus'. A key contact in the team is Jack Smith, who advises clients including Israel Chemicals and OPC Rotem on the execution of long-term gas sale and purchase agreements with Energean Israel. Smith is also assisting IPM Beer Tuvia and Reindeer Energy with the development of power plants in various stages. Also recommended are Itay Geffen and Ronit Rosenstein-Barel, who are acting for Zero Waste, an SPC held by Shikun & Binui and a subsidiary of Azrieli Group, in relation to the development of a municipal solid waste treatment facility Rishon Le Zion. Geffen also advised Shikun & Binui - Renewable Energy on the financial closing of six high-voltage photovoltaic power plants in the south of Israel. In addition, the team has experience in transport infrastructure and is advising a consortium comprising Alstom Transport, Dan Public Transportation Company and Electra Concession on the pre-qualification process in a PPP tender for the design, finance, construction, operation and maintenance of the Green Line in Jerusalem.
Herzog Fox & Neeman is hailed as 'the go-to Israeli address for project financing transactions involving domestic and international components'. 'The team has unrivalled experience acting for international financing institutions', but also advises project companies and developers in large energy and infrastructure projects. The department is jointly headed by Adam Eytan and Mark Phillips, the latter of whom advised Deutsche Bank and Bank Hapoalim on the provision of financing for a 430MW power plant in Beer Tuvia, and acted for a consortium of international lenders in relation to the financing of two natural gas reservoirs in Israel. Phillips is also advising Hutchinson Water Israel on its bid process for the finance, design, construction and maintenance of a water desalination plant in Cyprus. Additionally, Eytan has advised prominent project companies on bids for high-profile infrastructure projects in the transport and defence sectors. The team is also acting for a large consortium in relation to its participation in a tender for the design, finance, build, operation and maintenance of the Green Line of the Jerusalem Light Rail. Other key clients include Noy Fund and Star Pumped Storage.
Meitar Liquornik Geva Leshem Tal Law Offices is 'highly respected in the domestic and international project finance community', and by some clients' reckoning, the firm has 'the market-leading practice in the oil and gas sector'. Adv Renelle Joffe, who leads the oil and gas practice, acted for Energean Israel in relation to the acquisition from Delek Group of rights in the Karish and Tanin gas fields. The project finance team is headed by Adv Jonathan Finklestone and includes Guy Kles and Adv Tani Zahavi, all of whom are advising a consortium of financial institutions including Bank Leumi on the provision of financing for the the new IDF Technology Campus. Additionally, the team is advising Megalim Solar Power on the development of a solar power plant in in Ashalim, and is acting for Shapir Engineering Cross Israel North, as BOT concessionaire, in relation to the Cross Israel Northern Highway No 6. Further, Joffee and Finklestone are assisting an independent power producer with the construction of new power plants overseas. Also recommended is associate Elad Sharabani and litigator Adv Israel Leshem, the latter of whom has experience representing energy companies and infrastructure developers in commercial disputes.
'By any measure', Tadmor Levy & Co. 'has one of the best projects teams in Israel'. Led by the 'hugely experienced and highly respected' Noa Meidan, the department is best known for advising government parties on large-scale infrastructure projects, though the team is also engaged by domestic lenders, and has experience advising international project companies. In the transport infrastructure space, Meidan is advising the State of Israel on the full tender process for the financing, construction, operation and maintenance of the newest extension of the Jerusalem Light Rail; she is also acting for the governmental company responsible for facilitating the development of the Tel Aviv Light Rail, NTA - Metropolitan Mass Transit System, in relation to the most recent tenders for the development of the Green Line and Purple Line. Also of note, Meidan is acting for the State of Israel in relation to the Red Sea-Dead Sea water project; an international PFI project involving the Kingdom of Jordan, which is one of the largest global PFI projects to date. On the lender side, the team has advised Bank Hapoalim, Israel Discount Bank and Bank Leumi on financing transactions for the development of various energy projects, road developments and defence infrastructure. Additionally, Ziv Wassercug is representing Shanghai International Port Group in negotiations with Israel Ports Development & Asset Company for the EPC and O&M agreements for the development of a new port terminal. Other key contacts include Asher Bichoonski and Idan Hirshberg.
Yigal Arnon & Co is engaged by government bodies, project companies and contractors, and international lenders in the financing and development of some of the largest energy and infrastructure projects in Israel. Among the most active government-side counsel, the team, which includes Doron Tamir, is acting for the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Transportation and the Municipality of Jerusalem in relation to all aspects of the Jerusalem Light Rail network. In addition, Tamir and Oren Roth are advising NTA Metropolitan Mass Transit System on the tendering for the design and construction of the Light Rail Transit project in Tel Aviv. On the lender side, Shiri Shaham and Simon Weintraub acted for JP Morgan and HSBC in relation to the provision of a $1.75bn term loan to finance the development of the Leviathan gas field. The team also advised JP Morgan Securities, CitiGroup Global Markets and HSBC Securities USA, as underwriters, on a series of project bond issuances in connection with the Tamar gas field, with an aggregate value of $2bn. Also recommended are Micha Tollman and David Schapiro, who are advising a consortium led by Shapir Civil & Marine Engineering on the construction of a new port in Haifa. The government-focused group was further strengthened in 2019 by its merger with Weinstock-Zecler & Co, which brought Ayelet Simon-Vekslar to the practice group.
Given its international pedigree, the team at Barnea Jaffa Lande & Co. is an attractive firm for multinational contractors and project companies seeking development contracts in Israel. Moreover, the projects team also has experience in advising contractors and project companies on their activities abroad. In this context, Simon Jaffa is acting for a client in relation to various infrastructure developments in Africa, and Inon Yogev is assisting a project company with the pre-qualification process for a major bridge project in Western Asia. In the domestic market, Jaffa is instructed by multinationals such as GE, which he is representing in EPC and O&M negotiations for multiple energy production and supply projects. The team is also acting for a host of major international project companies and contractors throughout the bidding process for high-profile transport, port, energy and defence infrastructure projects in Israel. Also in the domestic market, Yogev is acting for Mabat Lanegev, the successful bidder for the development of the new IDF training facility in the Negev Desert. The team is also active in the renewable energy space.
Erdinast, Ben Nathan, Toledano & Co. provides 'one-of-a-kind service for companies in the renewable energy sector', where it showcases 'exceptional knowledge of the regulatory and commercial aspects of the market'. Department head Uri Noy is advising BrightSource Energy, as EPC contractor, on a contract for the finance, design, construction and operation of a 120MW solar power plant in Ashalim, and has also assisted OPC Solar with the development of a number of PV projects throughout Israel. Also of note, Noy assisted US-based Invenergy with its entry into the Israeli commercial energy market, which has seen the team involved in the development of several large-scale PV projects, thermal power plants, and desalination facilities. In the transport infrastructure space, Noy is acting for CAF Investment Projects in relation to its participation in a bidding consortium for the construction, operation and maintenance of the Green Line of the Jerusalem Light Rail.
The team at Gross, Kleinhendler, Hodak, Halevy, Greenberg, Shenhav & Co. was significantly strengthened in 2018 by its merger with Shenhav & Co, which brought to the firm a project finance team led by Tal Danon Shenhav. Danon Shenhav has acted for government-side clients in the execution of major transport infrastructure projects including the Cross Israel Highway and the Fast Lanes project. The existing energy and infrastructure group is headed by Anat Klein, who is most active in midstream and downstream energy mandates, where she acts for utility companies, corporate purchasers and power plants. Klein advised Dalia Power Plants on its first natural gas purchase agreement with Energean, and is acting for Tnuva in relation to the development of a power plant at its factory in Alon Tavor. Klein has also negotiated natural gas purchase agreements for clients such as Tapugan Industries and Cargal Group. Also of note, the team is acting for the State of Israel in relation to the tender process for the construction of a new hospital in Ashdod, which marks the first entirely new hospital in Israel in 40 years.
Leveraging 'deep commercial understanding and great market recognition', M. Firon & Co Advocates and Notaries is regularly engaged by project companies and EPC contractors in mega infrastructure projects. In a standout example, department head Tamar Firon-Smorodinsky is advising the Carmelton Group on all aspects of the financing, planning, operation and maintenance of the Carmel Tunnels project. She also acted for an international EPC contractor, SinoHydro, in relation to tunnelling works at a 340MW pumped storage power plant in Kochav Hayarden. Further, the team is advising Ashtrom Group and Shapir Civil and Marine Engineering on all aspects of the construction of the new NIS4bn port in Haifa. Also recommended is Timor Pesso, who is acting alongside Firon-Smorodinsky to advise Electra Infrastructure on its bid preparation for the construction of the Green Line of the Jerusalem Light Rail. Pesso has also been involved in project finance and development mandates in the renewable energy sector. In addition, the team is involved in large-scale real estate projects, where it acts for lenders and project developers.
S. Horowitz & Co has experience acting for project companies and bidding consortiums in some of Israel's largest infrastructure projects, and is regularly involved in the market's largest commercial and administrative disputes including tender litigation and contractor disputes. In particular, the team is involved in the largest transport infrastructure projects on both sides of the country. Benjamin Sheffer and Shai Avnieli are acting for SC Western Segment's Construction in relation to the construction of the Red Line on the Tel Aviv Light Rail, and Anthony Bloch and Amit Steinman are advising a consortium on its bid for the financing, design, construction, operation and maintenance of the extensions to the Jerusalem Light Rail, which would also involve taking over maintenance of the existing Red Line. Sheffer also acts for IVM Minrav Sadyt in its role as EPC contractor in relation to a water desalination facility in Ashdod. On the lender side, Bloch and Michelle Liberman are advising Bank Leumi and Bank Hapoalim on all financing and refinancing issues associated with the operational leg of the Jerusalem Light Rail. In addition to its non-contentious work, the practice has market-leading litigation capabilities. Yehoshua Horesh and Eran Bezalel are representing CRRC Changchun Railway Vehicle in a dispute concerning its successful bid for the planning, production, supply and maintenance of railway cars for the light rail lines in Central Israel.
Yehuda Raveh & Co. is well known in the project finance and development space, where it acts for bank lenders and project companies in relation to major energy and infrastructure projects. Department head Ron Vered is especially active in the renewables sector; he advises Enlight Renewable Energy on the development of a litany of PV projects, and recently advised Enlight and the Noy Fund on the acquisition of two solar projects from SunPower Israel Corporation. On the lender side, Vered has been involved in financing transactions for a variety of wind and solar projects, and also advised a lending consortium of domestic banks and institutional lenders on the financial close of a multibillion-shekel power project. Also of note, the team is acting for Electra in relation to a variety of infrastructure projects, including the development of the new IDF training city, which is the largest PPP project in Israel to date.
The project finance, energy and infrastructure department at Yossi Levy & Co is engaged by project companies, funders, government companies and rights holders in relation to infrastructure, power and real estate projects. Department head Uri Mandel is acting for an international company in its participation in a bidding consortium for the construction of new extensions of the Jerusalem Light Rail. Mandel is also acting for PSP Investment, as a license holder, in the execution of a 300MW pumped storage plant in Maale Gilboa. Also recommended is Gal Shani, who is advising the Israel Airport Authority on the tender process for the construction of Timna Airport, the new international airport planned in the south of Israel. Further, the team has advised institutional lenders and domestic banks on financing transactions for a number of BOT housing projects, and is also acting for Electra Concessions in relation to the construction and operation of two dormitory buildings at Bar Ilan University.
Amit, Pollak, Matalon & Co. Advocates and Notary is noted for its 'deep experience in the Israeli infrastructure market', where it acts for project companies and bidding consortiums in relation to transport, defence, port, energy and telecoms projects. Led by Nadia Davidzon, the team is acting for a large international bidding consortium in relation to the pre-qualification process for the design, finance, construction, operation and maintenance of the Jerusalem Light Rail Transit Network. Davidzon is also advising Oron Investment & Holdings Group and Seldat Distribution on the bid preparation for the development of the IDF Unified Supply Center, which carries an estimated value of NIS15bn. Additionally, the team is engaged by IBI Group, the design contractor for ten underground stations and tunnel networks for the Tel Aviv Light Rail. In the clean energy space, Davidzon has acted for Yam Pro Energy in relation to the establishment of sea-wave energy production plants in Australia and Ghana.
Epstein Rosenblum Maoz (ERM) has experience acting for project companies and contractors, as well as project lenders, in relation to infrastructure and energy projects, particularly in the renewables sector. The department is led by Amnon Epstein, who acted for Tahal Water Energy, Noy Fund and Hutchison Water International in relation to the financial close of a NIS2bn 344MW pumped storage project in the Jordan Valley. Epstein is also assisting Veridis and a strategic investment fund with their participation in a BOT tender for the construction of a new desalination plant in Israel, which will be among the largest such plants in the world. On the lender side, Epstein has advised an international lending consortium on the security documentation for the financing of the country's largest natural gas project. The team is also acting for NTA - Metropolitan Mass Transit System with regards to the entire tender process for the Green Line and the Purple Line on the Tel Aviv Light Rail. Additional contacts include Asaf Rimon and Lior Aharon.
Founded in 2018 by former leading partners of one of Israel's largest full-service firms, Krispin Rubinstein Blecher Law Offices has experience in a full range of commercial and regulatory matters in the power and energy sector. Of particular note, department head Amit Krispin and Sagit Chen advise 12 private power stations, some of which are among the largest power plants in Israel, on all agreements for power sales and project developments. In this capacity, the duo has handled natural gas supply agreements with some of Israel's largest corporates. The team also represented Nesher Pumped Storage in regulatory proceedings for the grant of its generation license. Also in the pumped storage space, Krispin and Chen are acting for Austria-based Andritz Group in relation to the construction and maintenance of a pumped storage plant in Manara. Moreover, Chen is assisting an international joint venture with its efforts to enter Israel's power development market through a series of bids for several solar projects throughout the country.
Lipa Meir & Co is engaged by public and private sector clients in relation to major energy and infrastructure developments, including wind, solar, desalination, defence and natural gas projects. In a standout matter, Zuriel Lavie and Uzi Mor are acting for Dalia Power Energies in relation to the construction of the largest privately owned natural gas power station in Israel; at 870MW, the power station is expected to supply nearly 7% of Israel's nationwide electricity consumption. Additionally, Lavie and Michal Schwartz are advising the Israeli Ministry of Defense on the NIS9bn City of Training Bases PPP project, and are also advising the client on its NIS7bn Technology Campus project. The team is also an adviser to the kibbutzim in the initiation of renewable energy projects throughout Israel. Of note, David Weinstein is advising several kibbutzim on negotiations to establish a solar project in a politically sensitive area of the country. Other key clients include the Israeli Water Desalination Administration, the Ministry of Internal Security, and bank lenders including Bank Hapoalim.
Shenhav Konforti Rotem & Co.
Shenhav Konforti Rotem & Co. is especially active in the renewable energy sector, where it has particular expertise advising kibbutzim on the development of wind and solar projects. Further, department head Omry Rotem is acting for a project company in relation to the development of a large-scale wind energy project in the Negev Desert, and Amos Konforti is acting for a prominent Israeli development group in relation to its participation in an international tender for a transport infrastructure project overseas.
From project consortiums to lenders to EPC and SPC contractors, Shibolet & Co. with Raved, Magriso, Benkel & Co. acts for nearly every type of project participant in domestic and international infrastructure, clean energy and power projects. A key contact in the team is Alon Ziv, who is advising a prominent Israeli corporate on the development of a high-value infrastructure project in Africa, and is acting for a well-known multinational engineering company in relation to the finance, construction and operation of a power project in Israel. Ziv is also active on the lender side, where he advised Clal Insurance Company on its provision of financing for the development of a photovoltaic project developed by the Kibbutz Economies Group. Further, Revital Ben-Artzi is acting for Telemenia Worldwide Projects in relation to power projects in Europe, Africa and South America. Also recommended is David Magriso, who is acting for a multinational bidding consortium in relation to the pre-qualification for the finance, design, construction, operation and maintenance of the Jerusalem Light Rail Transit Network. Other key figures in the team include Orit Marom-Albeck and Eyal Ron.