Founded in 2018, boutique firm Del Castillo y Castro Abogados has quickly become one of the first names that comes to mind when talking about bankruptcy, debt restructuring and associated litigation in Mexico, so it is not surprising to find its team regularly acting for both creditors and insolvent companies on major matters in this field. Founding partners Fernando Del Castillo and Alfonso Castro jointly head the team, bringing their combined talent and joint experience to the practice. Del Castillo, who is regarded by peers as a leading expert in contentious bankruptcy mandates, handles that side of the practice - closely supported by noted associate Karla Gabriela Silva - while Castro focuses on non-litigious matters, adding to the practice his strong corporate and financial background. The firm has offices in Mexico City and Monterrey.
Bankruptcy and restructuring in Mexico
Del Castillo y Castro Abogados
Fernando del Castillo; Alfonso Castro
‘Tailor-made, in-depth understanding of the company’s situation. In-depth and detailed understanding of the company’s needs’
‘I would highlight Alfonso Castro and José Carlos Vera for their attention and service ready to meet the needs of the client, with extensive experience and knowledge of their field’
Banco Mercantil del Norte
Posadas Bond Holders Committee
Grupo Radio Centro
Hipotecaria Su Casita
Servicios Auxiliares de Administración
- Representing Abengoa and its subsidiaries in the restructuring of its debt with several stakeholders; the value of the matter is over €100m.
- Representing Corporación Geo in its approximately $1bn liquidation procedure.
- Advised Hipotecaria Su Casita regarding an agreement with its creditors to restructure a $3bn debt.
In 2020, the three founding partners of Guerra, Hidalgo y Mendoza (GHM) spun off from one of Mexico's powerhouses in the bankruptcy field, Guerra González y Asociados, S.C., to establish this notable boutique firm specialising in restructurings (both out-of-court and concurso mercantil), litigation, arbitration, and other dispute resolution methods. New in name only, the firm boasts proven experience defending distressed companies in insolvency proceedings, and the six-strong team benefits from solid experience assisting clients with disputes arising in the course of bankruptcy proceedings. The practice is led by partners Jesús Ángel Guerra Mendez, who garners praise for being ‘one of the most important litigators in Mexico’ and one of the ‘leading experts in insolvency proceedings’; and Elias Mendoza and Patricio Hidalgo, who are also highly regarded. They are supported by a second line of senior associates which includes Sandra Trejo, Adrián Villamil and Patricia Cervantes.
Jesús Ángel Guerra Mendez; Elias Mendoza and Patricio Hidalgo
‘Great team. Jesús Guerra is one of the leading experts in insolvency proceedings in Mexico. Patricio Hidalgo is also very good’
‘They have very technical lawyers and definitely some of the best trial lawyers in Mexico’
‘They are very good at working as a team, there is always one of the partners available’
‘They are very technical, user friendly, and business oriented. In particular, Jesús Guerra has become one of the most important litigators in Mexico, and Elías Mendoza is a promising youngster who will surely go very far’
‘They have very good communication with clients and you can see the good internal collaboration between them’
‘The best asset they bring to the table is their great experience’
‘In addition to their great experience and knowledge of the law and precedents, they have an excellent manner’
Nader, Hayaux y Goebel, SC houses a ‘very strong and capable team’ in the field of bankruptcy and restructuring, and is widely praised for its expertise in handling all aspects of restructuring and workout proceedings, and for its skills in cross-border insolvency issues. In 2020 and 2021, the team continued to act for its established and longstanding clients, as well as drawing new clients to the practice. The team, which acts for both creditors and debtors, is jointly led by Michell Nader, a market expert who is lauded by clients for his negotiation skills, and for providing them ‘peace of mind’ when handling matters; and Javier Arreola, who has a solid track record advising on restructurings and workouts. Fellow partner Adrián López, who 'brings to the table a lot of legal technique and experience’, offers key support to the team.
Michell Nader; Javier Arreola
‘Very strong and capable team led by Michell Nader. Well known in the area domestically. Lots of experience representing financial investors, both domestic and foreign, looking to work out of troubled situations. They are creative and pro-active. Their approach is always constructive’
‘Extremely responsive, very articulate; lots of international experience. Skilled when dealing with non-Mexican financial investors’
‘Very experienced team in this kind of matter, what distinguishes them is that a partner is always available to any issue. They have also invested a lot in technology to adapt to changes’
‘Michel Nader is an excellent negotiator and knowing that he is on the case gives a lot of peace of mind. Adrián López brings to the table a lot of legal technique and experience’
Monex Casa de Bolsa
Ad Hoc Group of Senior Noteholders of Aeromexico
Argentem Creek Partners (formerly Black River Asset Management)
Bank of America
PGIM Real Estate (formerly known as Prudential Real Estate Investors – PREI)
LandAmerica Financial Group
Sumitomo Mitsui Bank Corporation
Seguros Azteca Daños
- Advised the holders of the bonds (certificados bursátiles) issued by Grupo Radio Centro with ticker symbols RCENTRO 16, RCENTRO 17 and RCENTRO 17-2, in the process of restructuring the issuer’s debt under the bonds.
- Advising the Ad Hoc Group of Holders of 7.000% senior notes due 2025, as lenders in Aeromexico’s DIP financing, as part of its Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings.
- Representing the group of creditors in the insolvency and workout of AHMSA.
Sainz Abogados (formerly Cervantes Sainz, S.C.) is a revered heavyweight in the market, with over 20 years of experience, highlighted for its expertise in insolvency, restructuring and bankruptcy proceedings, both in-court and out-of-court. Boasting ‘unique skills and reputation’, the 13-strong team, which is a constant presence in large concursos mercantiles advising both creditors and debtors, is ‘comprised of highly skilled individuals offering exemplary service in multiple fields‘. The department is headed by founding partner Alejandro Sainz, a ‘true market leader’ with notable cross-border skills. Clients from a wide range of industries, both nationally and internationally, benefit from the firm’s ‘client-oriented’ mindset. Other key members of the practice include Santiago Alessio (‘a young but experienced and hardworking partner’), and associate Rodrigo Guaida. Gabriela Avendaño is another contact at the associate level.
‘Their work has consistently placed them in the highest regard in their field. Their specific knowledge and know-how is leading in their field’
‘Alejandro Sainz is meticulous and has not only a great sense of what is possible, but also a unique sense of humour. His firm is young, but has very valuable lawyers such as Santiago Alessio. They know how to recognise what is possible in a restructuring and always think about the preservation of the company’
‘Alejandro Sainz is a true market leader, and a great guy. Santiago Alessio is a young but experienced and hardworking partner, one of the best I have seen. Rodrigo Guaida is a solid lawyer’
‘They have all the experience and willingness to provide specialised professional advice on restructuring and insolvency proceedings for global companies’
‘The collaboration has been timely and strategic for the current times and the circumstances involved in a massive restructuring of a global company, along with the optimisation of resources’
‘Alejandro Sainz brings his expertise, attention, sense of empathy and collaboration at all times with the company, providing a personalised, professional and specialised service in accordance with the legal and financial reality of the company’
‘The team has unique skills and reputation in insolvency matters. Their attitude is always practical and client-oriented. Their ability to navigate cultural differences is also terrific’
‘The practice is comprised of highly skilled individuals offering exemplary service in multiple fields. The team works efficiently and provides great communication. They are prompt and dedicated to their craft’
Ad Hoc Group of Bondholders of Oro Negro
Ad Hoc Group of bondholders of Grupo Idesa
Grupo Alyp-US Shoes
Noteholders of Grupo Cozumel Caribe
Isolux de México
Medley Capital Corporation
M&G Polímeros México
Hipotecaria Su Casita
Ad Hoc Group of Bondholders of Maxcom
- Representing Grupo Aeroméxico and its subsidiaries in all the Mexican law aspects of its restructuring proceedings in Mexico and under a Chapter 11 proceeding.
- Representing the Ad Hoc Group of Bondholders of Oro Negro, including in relation to Oro Negro’s entering into five drilling contracts with Pemex.
- Advised Empresas ICA and certain relevant subsidiaries in their restructuring by means of a concurso mercantil proceeding, including legal advice to five companies in obtaining a rescue financing of $215m.
Bankruptcy and restructuring has been one of Martínez, Algaba, de Haro y Curiel's core practices since its foundation over 50 years ago. Recognised for its expertise and track record in bankruptcy cases and out-of-court restructurings, where it primarily represents creditors, the nine-strong department acts as a one-stop-shop, offering an impressive balance between litigation and corporate skills. The department fields a solid mix of experienced and younger partners, including seasoned litigator Jorge De Haro; Javier Curiel Obscura, who has a strong background in corporate law; and Alejandro Legaspi, who focuses on bankruptcy, finance, insurance and banking regulation-related disputes. Senior associate Sergio Grande is another noted and active member of the team.
Jorge de Haro; Javier Curiel Obscura; Diego Gutiérrez Martínez; Alejandro Legaspi Lanz; Mauricio Mendoza Cuenca
Banco Nacional de Comercio Exterior
Banco Nacional de México
Banco Santander México
Pérez Correa González launched in the Mexican market at the beginning of 2021, after the dissolution of SOLCARGO, maintaining all the strength and experience in the bankruptcy area of its predecessor. Three partners front the team, which is lauded for its ‘cross-cutting knowledge of Mexican restructuring laws and for its international capabilities’: Fernando Pérez Correa, who makes clients feel ‘protected in litigation matters’, and has been appointed by the Federal Institute of Insolvency Specialists (IFECOM) as an insolvency trustee in several bankruptcies; José Covarrubias, who complements his practice with his considerable dispute resolution and arbitration experience; and the ‘young and very talented’ Zulima González, who was promoted to the partnership in January 2021.
Fernando Pérez Correa; José Covarrubias
‘It is a highly sophisticated team with cross-cutting knowledge of Mexican restructuring laws. They have good international capabilities’
‘Jose Covarrubias and Arturo Lara are very knowledgeable in their field and extremely practical in dispute resolution, seeking not only the best litigation strategies but also giving the opportunity for a favourable conciliation for the client. Their attention is always prompt and thorough’
‘Jose Covarrubias is highly competent, agile and an excellent negotiator; giving a fast and complete service that provokes confidence and peace of mind. Fernando Perez is one of the best lawyers in the country’
‘We have observed a great capacity of the firm to provide us with legal services, specifically with regard to litigation matters’
‘The personal attention from partners Fernando Perez and Zulima Gonzalez has given us a lot of peace of mind. Fernando is an expert in what he does and we feel totally protected in litigation matters with him. In addition, he has great human qualities. Zulima is young and very talented, her work and performance are excellent. She is also honest about what can and cannot be achieved, so she never gives us false expectations’
‘The team has always been inclusive, attentive and proficient in restructuring knowledge’
‘They are very formal and committed. Fernando Perez-Correa engages in a very professional manner, as well as José Covarrubias who is very fast and efficient in the way he works. Arturo Lara and Patricia Cervantes are very responsible lawyers and execute their work well’
Turbo Limited (formerly Biciclo)
Perforadora Oro Negro
Integradora de Servicios Petroleros Oro Negro
Servicios Petroleros San Antonio
Soluciones Integrales Almos
Servicios Integrales Técnicos y Ecológicos
- Represented Paclease Mexicana, as creditor, within the insolvency proceeding of Transportes Suri.
- Appointed conciliator in the Perforadora Oro Negro and Integradora de Servicios Petroleros Oro Negro bankruptcies.
- Appointed as conciliator in the bankruptcies of Grupo Almos and Soluciones Integrales Almos.
Ritch, Mueller y Nicolau, S.C.‘s bankruptcy and restructuring department has a solid track record advising on large national and cross-border restructurings and insolvencies that have arisen in the market. Experienced partner duo Jean Paul Farah Chajín and Pablo Perezalonso head the department and bring their considerable expertise from the corporate and finance fields. Key support comes from senior associate Adriana Padilla, an experienced litigation and restructuring lawyer, and a very active part of the team. In January 2021, the practice had to cope with the significant departure of former department head Thomas Header. Since publication, Padilla has been raised to the partnership - effective January 2022.
Jean Paul Farah; Pablo Perezalonso
‘The innovation they bring to legal strategies, I have not seen in other firms’
‘I would highlight the implementation of novel strategies that are out of the ordinary in these types of proceedings’
Geo Hogares Ideales
International Finance Corporation (IFC)
Banco Mercantil del Norte
- Completed the additional restructuring of Geo Hogares Ideales, which involved indebtedness of over $400m.
- Representing Gerald Metals as a secured creditor regarding a certain term loan facility granted to Minerales Libertad.
- Represented IFC, a creditor of Construcciones Metálicas Mexicanas (COMEMSA), in its bankruptcy process.
Thomas Heather, a recognised reference in the market for bankruptcy matters, who has undertaken the role of conciliator (insolvency trustee) in several insolvency proceedings, joined Creel, García-Cuéllar, Aiza y Enríquez, S.C. in 2021, providing a major boost to the firm's practice in this area. Led by partner Carlos Aiza, the department focuses on all non-contentious mandates related to corporate restructurings, financial restructurings, and bankruptcy and insolvency proceedings, including those involving complex financial situations and banking and finance structures. Key support comes from a talented group of finance and capital markets experts, including Pedro Velasco and Rodrigo Castelazo.
Apollo Global Management
JPMorgan Chase Bank
Corporación Tapatía de Televisión
Banco do Brasil
Grupo Financiero Banorte
- Acted as Mexican counsel to Apollo in securing a multi-tranche debtor-in-possession term loan facility (the DIP facility).
- Acted as Mexican counsel to the recognised creditors under the insolvency proceeding of Abengoa.
- Advising CTT (Corporación Tapatía de Televisión) on its financial restructuring with regards to publicly placed notes (certificados bursátiles) identified with ticker TV5 15 on the Mexican securities market.
Guerra González y Asociados, S.C.
Guerra González y Asociados, S.C. endured a significant blow with the departure of key partners, who went on to establish Guerra, Hidalgo y Mendoza (GHM). Nevertheless, the firm maintains a solid reputation within the bankruptcy sphere, thanks in large part to managing partner Jaime Guerra who is highly regarded in the market.
Housing a good mix of financial lawyers and litigation practitioners, the Mexican office of full-service firm Hogan Lovells advises both creditors and debtors on restructuring transactions, voluntary and involuntary bankruptcy proceedings, and on judicial and out-of-court reorganisation plans and separation of assets claims. Boasting excellent cross-border capabilities thanks to the firm's extensive global network, the practice acts for domestic and international companies in a range of sectors. The department includes noted practitioners such as Federico de Noriega, and accomplished litigators Omar Guerrero and Jorge Francisco Valdés, among others.
Federico de Noriega Olea; René Arce Lozano; Omar Guerrero Rodríguez; Jorge Valdés King; Luis Ernesto Peón Barriga
Alloy Merchant Finance
- Represented Alloy Merchant Finance as lessor of power equipment to Grupo Famsa in Grupo Famsa’s insolvency proceeding (concurso mercantil).
Bankruptcy and restructuring is one of the core areas for litigation boutique Mañón Quintana Abogados, which has a team of eight people handling a wide range of insolvency proceedings. Founded in 2013, initially the firm represented mainly creditors, although it has been opening up and now participates in matters on behalf of debtors. Antonio Mañón and Gerardo Quintana lead the team, which, in addition to this focus on litigation, also offers insolvency consultancy support. The department, which operates from the firm's offices in Mexico City and Tijuana, was reinforced in October 2020 with the arrival of counsel Antonio Barrera, who joined from the former Cervantes Saínz, and brings arbitration and energy expertise to the bankruptcy practice. Additionally, as a significant development in 2021, the firm has launched a Latin American practice, which will be headed by counsel Julio Copo Terrés, who will be accompanied by a team of four people.
Antonio Mañón; Gerardo Quintana
‘Gerardo Quintana and Dario Jandette are recommended’
Telecomunicaciones Modernas y Servicios Avanzados
Monex Casa de Bolsa
NR Finance México
CHG Meridian Mexico
Almacenadora Inter Americana
- Advising and representing debtor Dentimex on the first Mexican bankruptcy procedure (with the Business Bankruptcy and Insolvency Law) regarding a non–commercial entity.
- Representing debtor TEMSA in the drafting and performance of the restructuring agreement, as well as in the negotiation with all its creditors, including banks.
- Advising and representing Banjercito in the first banking insolvency procedure in terms of the amended Credit Institutions Law.
Quijano, Cortina y de la Torre Abogados
Boutique firm Quijano, Cortina y de la Torre Abogados has been a presence in the bankruptcy market in Mexico for over 30 years, where it offers a strong practice in insolvency matters. Particularly well known for its litigation capabilities, the department handles civil and commercial disputes as well as out-of-court settlements. Regularly sought out by creditors, the department includes standout practitioners including Javier Quijano, a recognised market figure, and Xavier Cortina, both of whom excel in contentious mandates.
Renowned for its expertise in domestic and cross-border bankruptcy litigation, as well as out-of-court restructurings, the ‘creative, honest and very diligent’ practice at Von Wobeser y Sierra, SC is a solid choice for both creditors and debtors. The team, which according to a client remains ‘at the forefront in the development of insolvency matters’, is led by partner Diego Sierra, who has a dual qualification to practice both in Mexico and the US, and has notable experience representing creditors securing their collection rights against insolvent companies. He also heads the firm’s anti-corruption and compliance practices, while additionally remaining active in arbitration and commercial litigation. In recent developments, the firm promoted Raymundo Soberanis to partner and Jessika Rocha to counsel in 2021. Since publication, Rocha has been raised to the partnership - effective December 2021.
‘A firm that, far from having slowed down its practice due to the pandemic, has intensified and modernised it, always with a view to satisfying the client’
‘They are a phenomenal team. Creative, honest and very diligent. Diego Sierra, undoubtedly the most outstanding’
‘I would highlight their dynamism, cooperation and teamwork’
‘They show at all times that they are attentive and working to the needs of our company, they send us memos and reports as soon as possible and they update us at all times on our matters’
‘I would highlight the human quality and the excellent attention and service to the client; the deep and highly specialised knowledge of their practice areas, and -very specially- the integral vision they have, between law and the economic life of the companies. Especially Diego Sierra and Alejandro González’
‘They are always at the forefront in the development of insolvency matters. Excellent legal and negotiation skills to obtain an adequate result in insolvency proceedings’
‘A great team with a great focus on the business side, they understand perfectly how a company works’
‘Diego Sierra is the perfect example of a leader in practice. He is brilliant and hard working. His methods are impeccable’
Marinsa de México
NTT Data Services Mexico Operations
Burger King Corporation
DF Deutsche Forfait
Landesbank Hessen-Thüringen Girozentrale (Helaba)
- Advising Marinsa on an insolvency claim filed by two alleged creditors before a District Court in the state of Campeche, Mexico.
- Representing Navistar (as creditor) in the insolvency proceeding of the Grupo Senda Autotransporte entities.
- Advising Cinépolis on strategic preventive litigation analysis of its restructuring of more than $1bn of debt with multiple banks.
International powerhouse White & Case S.C. is a firm of choice for several important banks and financial institutions acting as creditors to insolvent companies in the country. Working seamlessly with other areas of the Mexican office, as well as the firm’s global network, the practice includes notable partners such as Vicente Corta, highly regarded for his work on the creditor side and skills in bankruptcy and corporate restructurings; and Enrique Espejel, a go-to litigator for creditors involved in high-profile bankruptcies, lauded for his ability to ‘synthesise and explain legal issues in simple terms accessible to non-lawyers’.
Vicente Corta; Enrique Espejel
‘The team has excellent response times, plus all their responses are of excellent quality’
‘They have legal knowledge regarding jurisdictions (Chapter 11 for example) and are able to provide comparisons with other regulations, which is much appreciated by the business’
‘Enrique Espejel is outstanding, extremely agile in his response times and the follow up he gives to matters is exceptional. He is fluent in English and is able to synthesise and explain legal issues in simple terms accessible to non-lawyers’
Banco Mercantil del Norte
Banco Nacional de México
Capital I Reserva
York Credit Opportunities Fund
Grupo Financiero Afirme
- Advised Bancomext in connection with the restructuring of the M&G Mexican Companies, producers and sellers of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) resins for packaging applications worldwide.
- Acting as receiver in the liquidation of Banco Bicentenario.
- Advising Bancomext, as creditor, in connection with the bankruptcy proceedings of developer Desarrolladora Homex.
Galicia Abogados S.C.’s restructuring and insolvency practice is led by Monterrey-based partner Eugenio Sepúlveda, an experienced practitioner who tackles mandates through the provision of advice that covers tax, contracts, international law and other areas to assist in out-of-court workouts and bankruptcy litigation. The department is mostly active on the creditor side, with a track record in major bankruptcy proceedings in various sectors, including aviation, real estate and manufacturing.
Garza Tello-Clyde & Co Mexico
Garza Tello-Clyde & Co Mexico's local team has found a strong foothold in bankruptcy and insolvency matters in the energy sector, and is particularly active in the maritime industry, especially offshore. The practice, which is mostly focused on creditor-side work, is led by partner Vicente Bañuelos, who specialises in commercial litigation, bankruptcy and arbitration. He is closely supported by key senior associate Gabriela Ángel Navarro.
Erkal Uluslararasi Nakliyat ve Tic
García González y Barradas
Navarro Offshore (formerly Ranger Offshore)
Nordic Trustee AS
- Represented Nordic Trustee in the bankruptcy proceedings of Oro Negro.
- Representing Perforadora Central, owner of a fleet of drilling platforms, in seeking bankruptcy proceedings against one of its lessees.
- Advised Paragon in the filing of a voluntary bankruptcy request in federal court, which was resolved in the client’s favour declaring the bankruptcy of Paragon.
López Melih y Estrada S.C.
Full-service firm Mijares, Angoitia, Cortés y Fuentes S.C. fields a team of ‘highly skilled individuals’ in bankruptcy and insolvency, headed by 'excellent lawyer' Everardo Espino, an experienced practitioner in this field. The team draws on its expertise in complex and cross-border insolvency proceedings and financial restructurings, offering advisory and litigation services to creditors, insolvency practitioners, corporate debtors and their directors. Regular advisors to national and international banking institutions, as well as companies, the department also has a solid second line of associates, including Ramiro Cota.
‘They are very knowledgeable and technical. Good legal planning and strategy as well as personal attention’
‘Everardo Espino is an excellent lawyer, good attention and friendly treatment. He always has availability in his agenda to attend to urgent matters. He has an excellent background’
‘The practice is comprised of highly skilled individuals. Their specific knowledge and know-how is leading in their field’
‘Knowledge of the issues and ability to solve problems and alternatives for the situations that arise’
‘Everardo Espino and Ramiro Cota – knowledge, attention, treatment, ability to resolve issues’
‘It is an excellent firm’
‘The service is excellent, the billing is on time and the response times are immediate’
Estudios y Servicios Ecológicos y Ambientales de Tabasco
Grupo Aeroportuario Centro Norte (OMA)
Octaedro Constructora and Ingeniería para la Infraestructura Camino
- Represented Grupo Famsa in the launching of a restructuring of its 7.250% senior notes due June 1, 2020, for the aggregate principal amount of $59.1m.
- Advised and represented a subsidiary of Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex) in connection with the insolvency proceedings of Oro Negro.
- Advised the Mexican airport operator Grupo Aeroportuario Centro Norte (OMA) in Aeromexico’s Chapter 11 proceedings.
Ramirez Ornelas Abogados
Boutique firm Ramirez Ornelas Abogados is highly regarded within the bankruptcy sphere, mainly thanks to the expertise of founding partner and seasoned litigator Gerardo Ramírez Ornelas. The team, which includes key practitioners such as Luis Robles Santamarina regularly advises financial institutions in a wide range of bankruptcy-related mandates.
Managing partner Alonso Rivera Gaxiola, a widely renowned practitioner in the market with notable expertise in bankruptcy disputes, heads the practice at boutique firm Rivera Gaxiola, Carrasco y Kálloi, S.C. Operating from its offices in Mexico City and Monterrey, the department has a specific focus on mandates related to the financial services sector, representing both creditors and government entities on the contentious side of bankruptcy and restructuring matters. Key support comes from José Luis Carrasco, who handles a broad range of corporate conflicts including asset recovery, bankruptcy proceedings and shareholder conflicts.