Alemán, Cordero, Galindo & Lee has ‘extensive experience‘ in capital markets matters, with a particular emphasis on the debt capital markets space. Besides its strength in international Rule 144A/Regulation S transactions, the team is frequently involved in large domestic corporate bond issuances. The practice predominantly acts for leading Panamanian and international investment banks and financial institutions, although it also advises issuers on bond offerings, listings and regulatory issues. Managing partner Arturo Gerbaud, who has a wealth of experience in acting for both underwriters and issuers in significant bond offerings, oversees the practice. Other notable contacts include Eloy Alfaro, who excels in structured finance and complex securitisations, and newly promoted partners Rita de la Guardia and Rafael Marquínez, both of whom are seasoned in international securities offerings.
Capital markets in Panama
Alemán, Cordero, Galindo & Lee
‘They have excellent knowledge of broker-dealers, brokerage houses and the stock market in general.’
‘The lawyers have extensive experience in the field of capital markets.’
‘Alcogal has always shown an exceptional willingness to deal with our inquiries, calls and meetings. They are extremely respectful of the caps negotiated with clients, despite the fact that transactions may be delayed for any reason unrelated to the firm.’
‘A young and close-knit team with great experience and a good relationship with the stock market regulator. I have a high opinion of Rita de la Guardia and Rafael Marquinez.’
‘High degree of knowledge of the capital markets area. Strength in regulatory matters.’
‘Very committed and available.’
Bank of America
AES Panama Generation Holdings
Global Bank Corporation
Citigroup Global Markets
BAC International Bank
The Bank of Nova Scotia
Aeropuerto Internacional de Tocumen
Celsia/Bahía Las Minas/Alternegy
- Advised BofA Securities, Citigroup Global Markets and Banco General, as initial purchasers, in connection with a Rule 144A/Reg S secured bond offering by Aeropuerto Internacional de Tocumen (AITSA) for $1.85bn.
- Acted as Panamanian counsel to Bank of America, JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs & Co, as the initial purchasers, in connection with a Rule 144A/Reg S bond issuance by Banco General of $400m to strengthen its primary capital.
- Advised Banco General, as arranger and administrative agent, on the structuring and registration of a $70m corporate bonds issuance by Petróleos Delta.
Arias, Fábrega & Fábrega
The capital markets practice at Arias, Fábrega & Fábrega advises major international financial institutions and domestic banks on high-profile, cross-border and local debt offerings and securities regulation. The firm is highly regarded for its strong track record in sovereign bond issuances and initial public offerings by Panamanian corporations. Practice head Estif Aparicio has notable experience in complex financial structures, including bond offerings, to finance major infrastructure and construction projects, while co-managing partner Ricardo Arango is particularly recommended for structured finance, securitisations and initial public offerings (IPOs). Other key team members include international senior associates Donald Canavaggio and Cedric Kinschots.
Galindo, Arias & López
Highlighted for its ‘superior knowledge‘ of capital markets matters, Galindo, Arias & López advises a wide range of domestic and international banks and corporations on high-profile debt and equity security offerings in Panama and abroad. In addition to its notable expertise in public offerings, the team is well known for advising on banking and securities regulatory and compliance matters, and assisting with registrations on the local stock market and the New York Stock Exchange. Regulatory issues and capital markets transactions in the aviation sector are among department head Cristina Lewis de la Guardia's core areas of expertise. Roberto De Araujo López stands out for his in-depth knowledge of securities regulation, whereas associate Carla López is particularly noted for debt capital markets mandates.
Cristina Lewis de la Guardia
‘The practice of Galindo, Arias and Lopez stands out for its superior knowledge in the field of capital markets. The main difference is in the ability of the people.’
‘The two lawyers who stand out the most are Cristina Lewis and Carla López, who are probably the best lawyers for local capital markets matters. Our level of confidence in their advice is extremely high. We have worked on multiple matters together and they have guided us successfully through the process, with excellent results.’
BAC Valores Panamá
Mercantil Servicios Financieros
BAC International Bank
Corporación de Finanzas del País (Panacredit)
- Advised Copa Holdings on a $350m bond offering, guaranteed by the Export-Import Bank of the United States, to finance seven of its MAX aircraft.
- Advised BAC International Bank on the public offering of commercial notes of up to $100m.
- Acted as Panamanian counsel to Cable Onda in connection with the pre-payment of $75m in corporate bonds to complete the payment of its $200m public offering of 2015.
Morgan & Morgan
Morgan & Morgan brings its ‘vast experience‘ in capital markets matters to bear when advising on high-profile public and private offerings, including both local transactions and international Rule 144A/Reg. S offerings. In addition, the team is singled out for its niche expertise in the incorporation of real estate investment funds, where Ricardo Arias, who recently took on the role of practice co-head, is highly experienced. Its impressive client roster spans domestic and international banks, financial institutions and major corporations, particularly in the real estate sector. Francisco Arias, a key contact for capital markets transactions and regulatory matters, spearheads the group, which also features senior associate Ana Carolina Castillo and international associate Miguel Arias. Since publication, Castillo has been raised to the partnership – effective as of January 2023.
Francisco Arias; Ricardo Arias
‘Its extensive knowledge of capital markets allows Morgan & Morgan to speed up the process of preparing the documentation to submit to regulatory entities, banks and the stock market.’
‘Ana Carolina Castillo and Ricardo Arias always go the extra mile, which allows them to deliver the necessary documentation. In addition, their knowledge of the sector and the financing processes makes our communications smoother and takes us directly to actions and solutions.’
‘They are the firm in Panama that is most familiar with the subject of real estate investment companies.’
‘The service provided by Francisco Arias, Ricardo Arias and Miguel Arias was of a very good technical and professional level. They were timely and diligent at all times.’
‘Vast experience across the board.’
‘They think not only legally but also commercially.’
Banco La Hipotecaria
Cirsa Gaming Corporation
CM Realty (Cochez y Cia)
Corporación Finanzas del País (Panacredit)
MMG Bank Corporation
Morgan Stanley & Co
Global Bank Corporation
Urban Development Group
Sustainable Urban Revitalization Fund
Prima Sociedad de Inversion Inmobiliaria
MMG Fixed Income Fund
- Advised Banco La Hipotecaria on its $112.5m public offering of mortgage loans notes.
- Advised Marevalley Corporation on its $150m public offering of corporate bonds.
- Advised Supermercados Xtra on a $250m bond issuance.
Alfaro, Ferrer & Ramírez
Alfaro, Ferrer & Ramírez‘s ‘excellent‘ capital markets team is highly experienced in public and private securities offerings, showcasing particular strength in debt transactions in the financial and real estate sectors. The team, whose broad service offering also covers securities regulation and compliance matters, provides support to clients ranging from leading domestic and international banks, to brokerage firms and investment advisers. María Cargiulo, who has considerable strength in complex securitisations, public and private offerings, and investment fund structuring, leads the practice with senior partner Luis López Alfaro, a regulatory and compliance specialist. Associate Ana Raquel Sedda provides key support in an array of capital markets transactions.
Luis López Alfaro; Maria Alejandra Cargiulo
‘The team stands out for its high level of commitment to keeping up to date in form and substance with new trends and to providing support and immediate responses throughout the process.’
‘Maria Alejandra Cargiulo and Ana Raquel Sedda demonstrate confidence and empathy, and put themselves in the client’s position to seek immediate and effective solutions.’
‘Luis López is always aware of our case and available for any questions.’
‘Maria Alejandra Cargiulo gives us an excellent service and keeps us up to date with everything that is happening in the local market.’
‘Excellent firm with specialised knowledge of this area of law.’
Global Bank Corporation
Lifeinvest Asset Management
J Safra Sarasin Group
Caribbean Financial Group
- Advised Lifeinvest Asset Management on the structuring of an $18m multi-class umbrella private investment fund (Avila Recovery Fund), as well as the notification to the Superintendency of Capital Markets of Panama.
- Advised Credicorp Bank on the securitisation of $300m-worth of personal consumer loans originated by the client and sold to an insolvency remote Panamanian SPV.
- Advised Inversiones Inmobiliarias Arrocha on the restructuring of its $100m revolving corporate bond programme.
Icaza, González-Ruiz & Alemán
With considerable experience in public and private capital markets offerings, Icaza, González-Ruiz & Alemán offers advice to a diverse client roster comprising banks, multilateral agencies and corporations. Regulatory matters and licenses issues also feature on the team’s portfolio. Gabriel González-Ruiz jointly leads the practice with Michelle O de de la Guardia, who has longstanding experience in the structuring and issuance of public offerings. Luis Chalhoub is also a key contact; he marries expertise in corporate and banking law.
Quijano & Associates
Quijano & Associates is particularly active in local capital markets transactions, with a recent focus on issuances in the tourism and real estate sectors, but also handles matters with a cross-border component. The team advises at each stage of a transaction, from registration at the Superintendency of the Securities Market to the listing of bonds on Panama’s stock exchange, and the restructuring of securities offerings. Oliver Muñoz leads the practice, with support from associate Luis Miguel Rojer.
‘Quijano & Associates has proven to have the specific skills to be able to perform as securities lawyers. They are very clear about the regulations in place and the procedures to follow, as required by the regulator.’
‘Luis Miguel Rojer and Oliver Muñoz are accessible people with whom it is easy to communicate in order to get their input on the projects to be developed and how to design the legal strategy.’
SIGMA International and Global Market Attorneys
Financial services-focused boutique SIGMA International and Global Market Attorneys stands out for its advice on complex, cross-border capital markets transactions. The team is particularly well versed in the structuring of notes offerings to finance major energy projects; a recent highlight involved advising on the first green project bond issuance by a private company in Central America. Cecilio Castillero, who was previously at Arias, Fábrega & Fábrega and Milbank in New York, manages the practice, supported by senior associate Mónica Moreno and associate Eric Carles.
BG Trust Inc
- Acted as Panamanian counsel to Glenfarne Group in connection with a $1.76bn debt raise consisting of a $710m senior secured notes offering and an oversubscribed five-year $1.05bn pari-passu loan facility with eight joint lead arrangers.
- Acted as Panamanian counsel to InterEnergy Group in connection with the $262.7m green bond offering by its subsidiary UEP Penonomé II, which was the first green project bond issuance by a private company in Central America.
- Acted as Panamanian counsel to BG Trust, as guaranty trustee, in connection with the issuance by Banco La Hipotecaria of $112.5m principal number of mortgage-backed notes.
Virtù Atelier Legal
The capital markets practice at financial services boutique Virtù Atelier Legal received a significant boost in July 2021 with the addition of Marelissa Quintero, who has extensive past experience at the Panamanian securities regulator, and was the first woman to hold the position of Superintendent of the Securities Market. The team advises a range of corporations and financial institutions on the registration and structuring of public and private securities offerings. Practice head Ana Lucrecia Tovar has longstanding expertise in both regulatory and transactional matters, while Melissa Cortizo is noted for her advice to hospitality and tourism groups.
Ana Lucrecia Tovar