Energy transactions: conventional power in United States
Combining market-leading private equity, capital markets, project finance and restructuring practice area strength with a heightened focus on mandates within the energy sector (precipitated by the opening of the firm's office in Houston in 2014), Kirkland & Ellis LLP has successfully positioned itself as one of the leaders within the conventional power space. On the M&A front, the team is best-known for its work on behalf of private equity sponsors and infrastructure funds on buy and sell-side mandates throughout the value chain, including as it relates to the power and transmission, infrastructure and utilities sectors. The 'excellent' Houston-based partner Andrew Calder excels in handling corporate transactional and corporate governance mandates within the conventional power space. Calder heads up a team that also includes Rhett Van Syoc - whose wide-ranging energy and natural resources corporate practice includes a significant amount of private equity-driven domestic and international M&A within the power generation space. On the finance side, the 'fantastic' Washington DC-based partner Rohit Chaudhry regularly advises lenders on power-related project development and acquisition finance mandates.
Rohit Chaudhry is fantastic.
Andrew Calder has an excellent reputation.
Allianz Global Investors
ArcLight Capital Partners
Cleco Corporate Holdings
GenOn Energy, Inc.
Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co
Macquarie Infrastructure Partners
Nomura Securities International, Inc.
NRG Wholesale Generation
Sithe Global Power
The Blackstone Group
True Green Capital Management
- Advised NRG Wholesale Generation, a wholly owned indirect subsidiary of GenOn Energy, Inc., and GenOn Energy, Inc. (collectively with NRGWG, as GenOn), as guarantor, on its asset purchase agreement with Entergy Mississippi, Inc.
- Represented Macquarie Infrastructure Partners funds in the sale of a 10% and 5% interest in CEF-L Holding, LLC, indirect owner of the Lordstown Energy Center, a 940 MW natural gas-fired combined-cycle power plant under construction in Ohio, to subsidiaries of Sumitomo Corporation and Development Bank of Japan, respectively.
- Advised the lenders, led by Investec Bank, on the financing for the approximately 1,875 MW Guernsey natural-gas-fueled electric generation facility in Ohio.
- Represented the lenders, led by Investec, Nomura, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China and China Merchants Bank, on the financing for Red Oak Power LLC, a gas-fired power project in the EMAAC Zone of the PJM power market.
- Represented Investec Bank in a holdco financing for a subsidiary of Ares EIF to finance their equity contributions for the Hill Top gas fired power project in PJM.
The 'excellent' team at Latham & Watkins LLP advises clients across the spectrum of power mandates, from M&A transactions and joint ventures, through to advice on development projects and development finance-related matters. The firm has particularly strong coverage out of New York on the corporate front and handles a slew of instructions for both strategic investors and private equity sponsors on M&A mandates in the power space, typically at a later stage in the value chain. David Kurzweil is global co-chair of the power group and combines expert industry knowledge with corporate structuring prowess. Kurzweil is frequently at the forefront of the most significant power M&A mandates handled by the team, including his work for Vistra Energy on its $475m acquisition of Ambit Energy. Washington DC-based partner David Schwartz co-heads the global power offering alongside Kurzweil and is able to parlay his strong regulatory knowledge within the power sector to provide a 'very comprehensive offering' to electric generation-related clients, including as it relates to work on complex event-driven corporate transactions, the negotiation and drafting of commercial agreements and representation on standalone regulatory matters. New York-based partner Paul Kukish regularly handles power-related M&A as part of his broad-ranging private equity practice, and is another key member of the team that also includes Los Angeles-based partner Jeffrey Greenberg, who regularly handles project finance and M&A-related power mandates.
The team is excellent and delivers flawless transaction execution.
David Schwartz provides a very comprehensive offering.
Jonathan Rod ensures that transactions run smoothly.
Energy Capital Partners
Wheelabrator Technologies, Inc.
D.E. Shaw Renewable Investments
ContourGlobal Power Holdings S.A.
Ares Management Limited
Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets
ArcLight Capital Partners LLC
Mizuho Securities USA LLC
LS Power, LLC
Innergex Renewable Energy, Inc.
Vivint Solar, Inc.
Platinum Equity, LLC
Vistra Energy Corp.
Avenue Capital Group
MUFG Union Bank, N.A.
General Electric (GE) Capital Corporation
- Advised Vistra Energy on its $475m acquisition of Ambit Energy.
- Advised Energy Capital Partners on its $90m acquisition of Convergent Energy + Power, a developer of large-scale energy storage assets for industrial customers and utilities.
- Advised the sponsor, LS Power, in the term loan B refinancing of the West Deptford Energy Project, an approximately 744 MW combined‑cycle natural gas‑fired power generation facility in West Deptford, New Jersey.
- Advising investment funds managed by Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets of their 44% interest in Puget Holdings, a provider of electric and natural gas services and indirect parent entity of Puget Sound Energy, to a consortium of investors including OMERS Infrastructure and PGGM.
- Advised Heartland Generation, a subsidiary of Energy Capital Partners, in its acquisition of ATCO Power Canada, a fossil fuel-based electricity generation portfolio of Canadian Utilities Limited (CU) located in Alberta, British Columbia, and Ontario.
Co-headed out of Washington DC and New York by Elaine Walsh and Michael Didriksen, respectively, and also able to tap into significant resources from the firm's Texas heartland, Baker Botts L.L.P. represents utilities, independent power producers/developers, financial institutions and private equity funds across a broad range of power-related projects, including renewables, conventional generation, transmission, battery storage, and LNG-to-power. Walsh has vast experience handling corporate transactional work within the power sector, with work spanning M&A for leading domestic power companies including NRG Energy (which she recently advised on the $175m sale of the Canal 3 gas-fired power generating facility under development in Massachusetts), as well as advice to clients relating to the development of electric generation and fuel transportation and storage projects. Houston-based senior counsel William Lamb regularly advises utilities companies on their most strategically important M&A work, including his recent representation of Westar Energy on its $14bn stock-for-stock merger of equals with Great Plains Energy. Austin-based partner Courtney Fore was also involved in the aforementioned transaction and has a growing reputation within the power space for corporate and private equity-led M&A, as well as on debt and equity capital raisings.
Other key lawyers:
El Paso Electric Company
- Representation of NRG Energy across a range of matters, including on the $1.8bn restructuring of its former subsidiary, GenOn.
- Advising Crius Energy on its $378m acquisition by Vistra Energy.
- Advised Westar Energy on its stock-for-stock merger of equals with Great Plains Energy.
- Advising CenterPoint Energy on all aspects of the completion of its concurrent underwritten public offerings of circa $1.9bn of shares of its common stock and 19,550,000 depositary shares.
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP
Co-chaired from New York by Peter Hanlon and Nicholas Politan, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP's power and renewables group has a particularly strong reputation advising strategic and financial investors on big-ticket power M&A transactions across the generation, transmission and distribution value chain. Hanlon has a longstanding relationship with Berkshire Hathaway and regularly handles M&A work for its energy holding company, Berkshire Hathaway Energy, in both the renewables and conventional power sectors. The practice continues to grow, with the arrival in January 2019 of Denver-based partner Gerald Farano from Jones Day, the latest in a series of notable hires, including New York-based partner George Stamas from Kirkland & Ellis LLP, which have further bolstered the firm's strength in relation to energy utilities M&A. The team is rounded out by a strong regulatory offering out of the firm's Washington DC office.
Berkshire Hathaway Energy Company
Sojitz Corporation of America
Carlyle Power Partners
Avista Terna Energy
Northern Natural Gas
Vestas Wind Systems
Algonquin Power and Utilities Corp.
I Squared Capital
NRG Energy, Inc.
- Represents WGL Holdings on its $6.4bn sale to AltaGas.
- Represents Southern Company as FERC and antitrust counsel in connection with its approximately $6.47bn sale of Gulf Power Company, Florida City Gas and the entities holding Southern Power’s interests in Plant Oleander and Plant Stanton to NextEra Energy.
- Representing Guggenheim Securities in connection with several major electricity transactions, including as financial advisor to Crius Energy Trust, a provider of electricity and natural gas products, on its sale to Vistra Energy, a residential electricity provider.
- Representing Morgan Stanley, in its role as advisor to SCANA in connection with SCANA’s $14.6bn sale to Dominion Energy.
- Represented Berkshire Hathaway Energy Company in connection with two multibillion-dollar note offerings and two related registered exchange offers.
Primarily based out of the firm's New York headquarters and also benefiting from a significant West Coast presence in Los Angeles, Milbank is active across all aspects of project development and finance, power generation and energy restructurings, and greenfield development matters. Leveraging a strong overarching project and acquisition finance capability, the firm regularly advises creditor-side clients on domestic and international new money financings and restructurings, where in addition to its product expertise across the capital structure, the firm also benefits from knowledge of the complex linkages between legal, regulatory and economic issues as they relate to the power and energy industry. Daniel Bartfeld co-heads the firm's project, energy and infrastructure finance team alongside Jonathan Green and regularly handles work for lenders and borrowers in relation to financings and restructurings involving conventional power. As well as domestic work, Bartfeld also excels at multi-source financings involving a Latin American nexus; notably he has been involved in many project financed gas and oil/commodity pipelines projects running from the US to Mexico, and within Mexico itself. William Bice is another core member of the team and has expertise across the development, financing, acquisition, disposition and restructuring of power generation (conventional and renewable) and transmission projects. Special counsel Richard Hillman is also recommended. All named practitioners are based in New York.
Other key lawyers:
ArcLight Capital Partners
Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp.
The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ
Toyota Tsusho Corporation
- Advised the lenders on the refinancing of the senior indebtedness of Sentinel Energy Center, owner of an 800 MW natural gas-fired electric generation facility in Riverside, California.
- Acting as designated counsel to the institutional investors in connection with the Rockland Capital Gridflex portfolio.
- Acted as designated counsel to the institutional investors in connection with Citizens Sycamore Transmission USPP.
- Represented the administrative agent and lenders in the upsizing of existing credit facilities for Lackawanna Energy Center, a 1500 MW natural gas-fired combined cycle power plant located in Jessup Borough, Lackawanna County, Pennsylvania.
- Advised the seller, a portfolio company LS Power, in connection with the sale of Carville Energy Center (516 MW natural gas-fired combined cycle facility in St. Gabriel, LA) and the Oneta Energy Center.
Co-headed by 'tax equity guru' Keith Martin and financing lawyer Benjamin Koenigsberg out of Washington DC and New York, respectively, and also able to draw upon the expertise of transactional energy lawyers situated throughout the firm's vast international network, Norton Rose Fulbright's projects group is well-versed across both renewables and conventional power projects, both from a domestic and international perspective. At the vanguard of the development of the US independent power sector since its inception in the 1970s, the firm maintains strong sponsor relationships but has also successfully diversified its client roster over time to include investor and lender clients. The scope of the firm's work is broad across corporate, financing, regulatory and restructuring matters, and it is therefore well-placed to advise on deals throughout the life-cycle, from inception of the development of a project, on the operational needs thereafter and in relation to any pursuant M&A.
Cleco Corporate Holdings
Enel Green Power
American Infrastructure Funds
Starwood Energy Group
- Represented Cleco Corporate Holdings, owner of regulated electric utility Cleco Power LLC, and the Macquarie Group on the $1bn acquisition of NRG South Central Generating LLC (South Central).
- Represented insurance and investment firm Ullico in connection with numerous acquisitions including on a minority stake in Southern Star Central Corporation.
- Represented Starwood Energy Group and Ares EIF on the sale of their respective interests in Hudson Transmission Partners to Argo Infrastructure Partners, LLC.
- Represented GS EPS in connection with its purchase of a 5% interest in the Linden Cogeneration Complex, a 972 MW natural gas-fired plant in New Jersey.
- Represented American Infrastructure Funds in connection with the acquisition of a controlling interest in Unison Energy.
Benefiting from energy focused M&A and finance lawyers based in Houston and New York, in particular, and also able to tap into significant regulatory capacity out of Washington DC, Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP is well-placed to advise a balanced roster of stakeholders, including independent power producers, investors, and producers, across a myriad of mandates relating to the development, financing, sale and purchase of assets in the electricity space. Houston-based global head of the firm's energy and infrastructure group Blake Winburne has significant experience in the electric power sector (including fossil fuel-fired, simple and combined cycle and cogeneration generating facilities) and regularly handles work for large energy companies and private equity firms on M&A transactions, running the gamut from development stage assets through to fully operational facilities. Former co-head of the power group Tara Higgins joined Sidley Austin LLP in March 2019.
Energy Investors Funds / EIF United States Power Fund, IV, LP / Ares Capital Corporation
ArcLight Capital Partners
NRG Energy, Inc.
Carlyle Investment Management
ENGIE North America (formerly GDF Suez)
Tennessee Valley Authority
General Electric, including GE Energy Financial Services and General Electric Capital Corporation
Sempra U.S. Gas & Power
- ARDIAN on its acquisition of a 41.9% stake in the 620 MW Hill Top natural gas power project in Pennsylvania from funds managed by Ares Management.
- Advised France-based Veolia on the $1.25bn sale of its US district energy assets to private equity firm Antin Infrastructure Partners.
- Represented ArcLight Capital in the acquisition, project financing and sale, by auction, of the 625MW Mesquite power plant.
- Represented Wellhead Energy in the financing for the development of the 99.3MW Stanton Energy Reliability Center in Stanton, California, a simple-cycle, natural gas-fired power plant and battery energy storage system.
- Advising Global Infrastructure Management on the financing through a holdco loan of the peaking 600MW Carlsbad Gas-Fired Energy Center located near San Diego, California.
Able to marshal the resources of lawyers within the firm's broad-based market-leading private equity and banking practices, the energy and infrastructure practice group at New York powerhouse Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP, which is headed by David Lieberman, provides a 'strong and highly competent service' to funds, utilities, banks and independent power producers across the spectrum of power-related corporate and financing work. Work includes financing and M&A mandates relating to electric power and transmission, pipelines and infrastructure. The firm is, however, best-known for its ability to handle big-ticket utility consolidations, as well as later stage private equity acquisitions. Brian Chisling is a key member of the team and provides M&A, capital markets and banking expertise to a wide range of stakeholders in the power sector.
Other key lawyers:
The firm provides a strong and highly competent service.
Alinda Capital Partners
American Electric Power
Blackstone Capital Partners VI, L.P.
Energy Capital Partners
First Reserve Corporation
Goldman Sachs Lending Partners LLC
ITC Holdings Corp.
KeyBank National Association
Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.
Michigan Electric Transmission Company
MUFG Union Bank
Mizuho Corporate Bank
Ohio Valley Electric Corporation
Talen Energy Corporation
- Representation of Dixie Electric, and its affiliates, in its Chapter 11 restructuring.
- Representation of JPMorgan Chase Bank, as administrative agent, in connection with the fourth amended and restated $6bn revolving credit agreement entered into by Dominion Energy.
- Representation of Citibank, as administrative agent, in connection with Edison International’s $1bn 364-day term loan credit agreement.
- Representation of MUFG as lender in connection with DesertLink LLC’s $103m term loan and $7m revolving credit facility.
- Representation of JPMorgan Chase Bank as administrative agent, in connection with Southern California Edison’s $750m term loan credit agreement.
At the cutting-edge of project and acquisition finance techniques within the power industry for an impressive roster of commercial banks, including BNP Paribas and Credit Agricole, and also very active on the M&A front for sponsor clients, including Carlyle Power Partners and I Squared Capital, White & Case LLP appears with great regularity on many of the most significant transactions in the sector. Nandan Nelivigi heads up the firm's energy, infrastructure and project finance team and has an excellent pedigree handling financing and M&A mandates, both domestically and internationally, particularly on matters with an Indian nexus. The 'very experienced and commercial' Arthur Scavone is a well-known figure in the project finance space and as part of his broad-ranging practice has a particular niche advising lead arrangers in term loan B transactions in the US power sector. Michael Shenberg has a strong reputation among financial and strategic investors on M&A mandates within the electricity sector, both in relation to the acquisition/sale of large portfolios and single-asset deals. All named practitioners are based out of New York.
Arthur Scavone is very experienced and commercial.
Antin Infrastructure Partners
Carlyle Power Partners
I Squared Capital
Osaka Gas Co.
- Representation of Antin Infrastructure Partners on the $1.25bn acquisition of Veolia Group’s district energy assets in the US.
- Representation of I Squared Capital, through its ISQ Global Infrastructure Fund I, on the sale of its interests in Kendall Green Energy to Veolia Energy North America.
- Representation of Carlyle Power Partners on its $590m acquisition of three natural gas-fired generation facilities in New England, known as Bridgeport Energy, Tiverton Power and Rumford Power.
- Representation of Japanese gas and energy service provider Osaka Gas Co on the acquisition of a 25% equity interest in CPV Towantic, LLC, which owns and operates the CPV Towantic Energy Center, a 785MW dual-fuel combined cycle electric generation facility located in Oxford, Connecticut.
- Representation of BNP Paribas in the proposed financing for the 955 MW natural gas-fired combined cycle power project in Oregon, Ohio.
Led out of Houston by Ryan Holcomb and also able to call upon the transactional expertise of practitioners based out of New York and Washington DC, Bracewell LLP's power group is well-placed to advise utilities, independent power producers, retail and wholesale power companies on corporate and financing transactions throughout the value chain. In addition to the firm's transactional prowess, clients also benefit from a high degree of regulatory expertise, adding value on standalone issues as well as M&A transactions in the regulated utilities sphere. The team also has a niche advising on power trading matters, where it is able to deploy the expertise of numerous practitioners with former in-house experience at commodities trading businesses.
Other key lawyers:
Upper Bay Infrastructure Partners
Rockland Capital, LLC and its affiliates
Marubeni Power International
AP Energy Holdings
- Represented AP Energy Holdings Inc., an affiliate of Advanced Power AG, and South Field Energy LLC (South Field) in the successful closing of financing and equity arrangements for the construction of the $1.3bn South Field Energy project.
- Represented Upper Bay Infrastructure Partners, as lead investor, on its acquisition of Tidewater Transportation & Terminals from Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners.
- Represented Rockland Capital and its affiliate, Wolverine Power Holdings on the sale of 100% of the equity interests in Michigan Power Limited Partnership (Michigan Power) to Osaka Gas Michigan Power, a subsidiary of Osaka Gas USA Corporation.
- Representing Entergy Mississippi in connection with its proposed acquisition of the Choctaw Energy Facility.
- Represented an affiliate of Upper Bay Infrastructure Partners in a joint venture with 8minutenergy Renewables, LLC and J.P. Morgan Asset Management to provide equity capital to support the company’s 10.7 gigawatt pipeline of utility solar and storage projects.
Benefiting from longstanding relationships with several energy utilities, including Dominion Energy, McGuireWoods LLP provides 'practical and knowledgeable' advice on some high-profile M&A in the sector. 'Very dynamic' Richmond-based partner Joanne Katsantonis is well-versed at handling M&A and financing work for a range of stakeholders, including utilities, independent power producers and infrastructure funds. Katsantonis handles a significant volume of work for core client Dominion Energy, including her recent representation of it on its $13.4bn merger with South Carolina-based SCANA Corporation. Baltimore-based partner Brian Kelly co-heads the firm's power transactions team and provides 'strong leadership and great advice' across a range of M&A and finance transactions, including in relation to hedging and trading activities.
Other key lawyers:
The lawyers are dynamic and fun, categories often missing in law firm practice.
The firm provides strong project management capabilities in addition to expertise on legal issues.
From a technical perspective, their advice is always practical, commercially-minded, and well-reasoned.
Joanne Katsantonis is a dynamic partner, who has exceptional people skills, insights and ability to get things done.
Brian Kelly has done an incredible job providing project oversight, strong leadership, and great advice. He helps us at the granular level to understand the minutia, and adds a seasoned voice to look ahead at big issues.
GDF Suez Energy Resources
- Advised Dominion Energy on its $13.4bn merger with South Carolina-based SCANA Corporation.
- Advised Dominion Energy in a recapitalization of the company’s Cove Point LNG facility in Lusby, Maryland, by an affiliate of Brookfield Asset Management.
- Represented Dominion Energy on its $1.32bn divestiture of interests in three merchant electric generation assets, including the Fairless Power Station, Manchester Street Power Station and Catalyst Old River Hydroelectric Limited Partnership to Starwood Energy Group.
- Advising KeyBank National Association on numerous financings to developers of wind farms and solar plants, including in relation to $30m refinancing for a 25 MW wind farm located in Idaho.
- Advising Fifth Third Bank on numerous solar project financings.
Strengthened in April 2019 by the arrival of a three-partner energy transactions team, led by the 'extremely knowledgeable' John Klauberg , from Bracewell LLP, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP has an increasingly compelling offering in the conventional power sector. The arrival of Klauberg, who is praised for his 'incomparable understanding of the issues and complexities' associated with power and utilities M&A, enhances the firm's existing strong project development finance offering for a primarily developer aligned client base. Boston-based partner Richard Filosa co-heads the firm's project finance, infrastructure and natural resources team alongside Klauberg and has a strong reputation across the project life cycle, from initial project structuring, development, and permitting through to the negotiation and closing of construction and permanent financing arrangements. Also based in Boston, Michael Müller has a growing reputation in the market for lenders, funds, developers and equity investors across a range of conventional power project financings.
Other key lawyers:
The power and utilities M&A team is top notch.
The firm’s power deal team is excellent, from top to bottom.
The extremely knowledgeable John Klauberg is the pre-eminent regulated utility M&A lawyer in the US and has an incomparable understanding of the issues, complexities and catalogue of lessons learned from multiple deals in multiple jurisdictions.
John Klauberg is practical, very responsive and has an excellent work ethic and demeanour. His team members – Daniel Nelson and Charles Vandenburgh were also a delight to work with and provided excellent legal advice.
Jonathan Morris has top notch power industry knowledge (which is critical to being a deal lawyer in the sector) and of course has a significant level of experience doing power deals.
Jonathan Morris’ dedication he has for his clients, his ability to navigate difficult situations, his intuitive deal skills and his never quit until the job is done work ethic ensures that he is a truly exceptional lawyer.
Indeck Energy Services
Carroll County Energy
- Represented Indeck Energy Services and its subsidiaries in raising more than $1bn to finance the Niles Energy Center, a new 1,085-megawatt, combined-cycle natural gas electrical generation facility in Cass County, Michigan.
- Representation of regulated Canadian utility ENMAX Corporation on its $959m acquisition of Emera Maine, a regulated electric transmission and distribution company.
- Represented Abatis and funds managed by Ares EIF in connection with the development and project financing of a 620 MW combined cycle gas-fired facility in Greene County, Pennsylvania.
- Represented Carroll County Energy on its refinancing of the project debt for the Carroll County Energy project.
- Represented National Grid in its agreement to purchase clean energy company and renewables developer Geronimo Energy.
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP
Co-headed out of Washington DC by Lance Brasher and Pankaj Sinha , Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP's energy M&A practice handles a significant flow of power-related acquisitions and disposals for utilities, independent power producers and private equity sponsors. As part of his broad portfolio of conventional power-related M&A matters, Sinha has recently acted for Entergy Corporation in numerous disposals of nuclear power plants throughout the country.
- Advised Emera Inc. on its $590m sale of three natural gas-fired generation facilities in New England to The Carlyle Group.
- Acted for Emera Inc. in the $959m sale of Emera Maine, its regulated electric transmission and distribution company in Maine, to ENMAX Corporation.
- Advised Entergy Corporation in connection with its sale and license transfer of Entergy Nuclear Vermont Yankee, the owner of the shut-down Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Station, to NorthStar Holdings, a dismantling and remediation company.
- Advised Entergy Corporation on the sale of its subsidiaries that own the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station in Plymouth, Massachusetts and the Palisades Power Plant in Covert, Michigan to a subsidiary of Holtec International, Inc. The sales include the transfer of the licenses, spent fuel and Nuclear Decommissioning Trusts.
- Advised Infrastructure Investments Fund on its $4.3bn acquisition of El Paso Electric.
Combining industry and product knowledge, Vinson & Elkins LLP's multi-disciplinary offering - which utilizes experts from across the firm's M&A, project development and finance, regulatory and tax groups - provides a very comprehensive service to a wide range of clients, including electric generating, transmission, and distribution utilities, independent power producers, financial institutions, power traders, and private equity and venture capital investors. Houston-based team head Trina Chandler is the cornerstone of the firm's power transactional practice and is regularly at the forefront of the most significant M&A, joint ventures and finance transactions in the space, including her recent work for Riverstone Holdings on the formation of a new European independent power producer, Onyx Strategic Investment Management I BV, and its subsequent acquisition of a fleet of coal-and biomass-fired power stations from affiliates of ENGIE. Kaam Sahely is also based in Houston and regularly handles conventional power work as part of his broad-ranging transactional energy practice.
Ares Capital Corporation
Arroyo Energy Investment Partners
The Carlyle Group
Clean Line Energy Partners
Global Atlantic Financial Group
Goldman Sachs and Co.
GSO Capital Partners
Oncor Electric Delivery Company
Quantum Utility Generation
Sundevil Power Holdings
Talen Energy Corporation
TPG Special Situations Partners (TPG Capital Management, LP)
Wayzata Investment Partners
- Advised Riverstone Holdings in connection with the formation of Onyx Strategic Investment Management I BV, a newly formed European independent power producer, and its signing of an agreement to acquire a fleet of coal-and biomass-fired power stations from affiliates of ENGIE S.A.
- Advised affiliates of Global Atlantic Financial Group in the $1.175bn acquisition from Southern Power of a minority interest in its solar portfolio.
- Advised AltaGas Power Holdings (U.S.) Inc. in connection with its entry into a purchase and sale agreement with Middle River Power III, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Avenue Capital, relating to the $300m sale of AltaGas’ non-core power assets including the Tracy, Hanford and Henrietta power plants in California.
- Advised Enviva Development Holdings in connection with its new joint venture, Enviva JV Development Company (with affiliates of The John Hancock Life Insurance Company) to acquire, develop and construct wood pellet production plants and deep-water marine terminals in the Southeastern US.
- Advised AltaGas Power Holdings in the execution of an agreement whereby Atlantic Power Corporation will acquire the equity ownership interests held by AltaGas in two contracted biomass plants in North Carolina and Michigan.
Led from Chicago and New York by James O’Brien and Clyde Rankin respectively, Baker McKenzie LLP's projects team has a strong reputation in the market for the development and financing of power projects, including advice on corporate structures regarding power plant ownership and operation. Although the team handles a significant amount of purely domestic work, for a primarily developer focused client base, its sweet-spot is in relation to handling big-ticket international power projects, where it is effectively able to collaborate with lawyers from across the firm's extensive global network of offices.
Ohio Valley Electric Corporation
PT UPC Sidrap Bayu Energi
EDF Renewable Energy, Inc.
Macquarie Development Corporation
Hannon Armstrong Sustainable Capital Infrastructure, Inc.
J-POWER USA Generation Capital, LLC
- Representing Acciona Energía in connection with the financing to be provided by the International Finance Corporation to AE’s subsidiary in Egypt, Alsubh Solar Power SAE, for two PV solar projects under the Egypt Round 2 Feed in Tariff Program.
- Acting for J-POWER in the 1100 MW combined cycle Jackson Generation project in Elwood, Illinois.
- Acting for Elwood Energy LLC in connection with the negotiation and execution of the construction of a natural gas-fired electric generating facility.
- Advising Siemens Financial Services, Inc. in connection with its investment in a joint venture with SOO Green Renewable Rail and Copenhagen Infrastructure Fund to build and operate a 349 mile-long electrical transmission line to carry wind and solar energy from Iowa to the Chicago area (connecting to the PJM interconnect).
- Advising EDF Renewable Energy in negotiating the sale of five US development-stage renewable energy projects.
Eversheds Sutherland's transactional energy offering is primarily based out of Houston and Atlanta, with ancillary tax and regulatory competences drawn from its Washington DC office. The firm's varied client base, which includes banks, independent power producers, electric utilities, international energy holding companies and private equity funds, ensures that it has an excellent perspective of the power market, with which it deploys to good effect in relation to M&A mandates, joint ventures, development, construction and financing. A notable niche for the firm is its expertise in relation to handling work for electric cooperatives. By virtue of a longstanding specialism in this area and a keen awareness of developments in this unique segment of the market, the firm is able to effectively advise these cooperatives across a wide spectrum of matters, including in relation to the development of nuclear, coal, gas and hydro-electric generation facilities, their financing needs and on commercial matters (including advice on long-term wholesale power purchases and power marketing arrangements). Atlanta-based partner Herbert Short leads the energy and infrastructure group in the US and has a strong reputation in the market across energy-related capital markets and corporate governance matters.
Bank of America Merrill Lynch
KeyBanc Capital Markets
PNC Capital Markets
Consolidated Edison Clean Energy Businesses
Kaua’i Island Utility Cooperative
- Represented longstanding client Oglethorpe Power Corporation on the registration of $500m of exchange bonds with the SEC, and an exchange offer for the bonds.
- Advising Consolidated Edison Transmission on a joint venture with Ørsted, the Denmark-based wind energy developer and Eversource, New England’s largest energy company, in connection with the Bay State Wind project.
- Underwriters’ counsel to Goldman Sachs, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and JPMorgan on the $114m financing and issuance of tax-exempt bonds for Florida-based, Seminole Electric Cooperative.
- Advising US-based electrical energy transmission utility holding company GridLiance on its joint ownership arrangements with municipal utilities and electrical energy co-operatives.
- Advised Plum Point Energy Associates on the $100m remarketing of tax-exempt bonds and on the negotiations regarding the replacement of the credit provider for the bonds.
Led out of Washington DC by Jeffrey Schroeder and aided by a strong domestic footprint, which includes key offices in Houston, Richmond and New York, Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP's energy and infrastructure practice has the strength-in-depth to handle a significant volume of mandates relating to the financing, development and acquisition of conventional energy projects and portfolios. A balanced roster of clients, including commercial banks, institutional lenders, export credit agencies, end-users and strategic investors, ensures that the firm has a 360 degree view of the commercial realities of any given deal. As well as its prowess on the financing and M&A front, the firm is also able to tap into the expertise of environmental, tax, real estate, litigation and regulatory lawyers, ensuring that it is able to provide a holistic service across the life cycle of any given project.
Other key lawyers:
Allianz Renewable Energy Partners of America
Bank of America
De Lage Landen Financial Services
DTE Power and Industrial
Duke Energy Corporation
GE Energy Financial Services, Inc.
JPMorgan Chase & Co.
- Advised DTE Energy Services, Inc. as lead sponsor’s counsel in connection with the Dearborn Campus Energy Infrastructure Project.
- Advised DTE Energy in connection with drafting and negotiating project documents for the $1bn development of the Blue Water Energy Center.
- Advising EmberClear as lead developer’s counsel in connection with the development of the Harrison Power Plant, a 1,050 MW natural gas-fired combined-cycle electric generating facility in Harrison County, Ohio
- Represented Duke Energy with respect to its sale of a minority interest in its commercial renewable energy portfolio to John Hancock.
'Very experienced across all facets of energy transactions', K&L Gates provides 'proactive and practical advice' across the spectrum of M&A, project development, financing and joint venture structuring relating to both conventional and renewable sources of energy. The team also has an 'excellent insight into where markets are trending', and perhaps most notably this manifests itself in its leading edge work for numerous large corporate end users in relation to their increasing willingness to step directly into the energy supply stream. David Hattery and William Keyser co-head the power practice out of Seattle and Washington DC, respectively, with Hattery appreciated by clients for his 'experience and knowledge in both the renewable and thermal energy industry'.
Other key lawyers:
The firm is very experienced in all facets of energy transactions.
The team provides proactive and practical advice and has an excellent insight into where markets are trending.
The very attentive and responsive David Benson is one of the best in the industry.
Eric Freedman is in a class of his own.
Jeff Cohen has deep industry experience and provides practical advice.
Municipality of Anchorage, Alaska
ENGIE Cofely Inc.
TransAlta Renewables Inc.
Enel Green Power North America Inc.
Jerome Resources, LLC
MDU Resources Group
- Advising the Municipality of Anchorage on the sale of the assets of its Municipal Light & Power utility to Chugach Electric Association, an Alaska not-for-profit electric co-operative corporation.
- Advised the Microsoft Corporation on the long-term purchase of carbon-free energy to serve Microsoft’s world headquarters in Redmond, Washington.
- Advised ENGIE in the purchase of Systecon, a provider of energy services to customers across the US.
- Advised TransAlta Renewables on its acquisition from Walden Green Energy of the Big Level wind project in Pennsylvania and the Antrim wind project in New Hampshire.
- Advised Enel Green Power North America on the sale of a large portfolio of solar energy development-stage projects.
Combining 'best in class FERC knowledge and experience' with corporate, capital markets and commercial expertise, Paul Hastings LLP provides a very rounded service to a range of clients, including private equity firms, sovereign wealth funds and public corporations. 'Efficient and knowledgeable' Washington DC-based corporate partner William DeGrandis personifies the firm's strength at the overlap between regulatory and transactional work, and regularly advises clients on regulatory and transactional matters relating to restructuring and open access transmission matters, including Regional Transmission Organization and Exempt Wholesale Generator issues.
The firm has best in class FERC knowledge and experience.
Energy sector experience; strong bench; excellent working relationship.
William DeGrandis is efficient and knowledgeable.
William DeGrandis: knowledge, contacts, experience; ability to site other applicable cases.
Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
Able to draw upon the expertise of numerous practitioners with a focus on corporate and finance work within the power sector and also able to leverage the expertise of lawyers from across the broader M&A, banking, capital markets and restructuring teams, in particular, New York-based Sullivan & Cromwell LLP is regularly involved in significant power transactions. Clients include a mix of lenders, independent power producers, project sponsors and private equity funds. Special counsel Tia Barancik and Audra Cohen co-head the power and utility group that includes of-counsel Joseph Frumkin, who as part of his broad-ranging M&A practice has handled a significant number of high-profile energy mandates for buyers and sellers.
Benefiting from 'amazing touch points within the industry across all types of projects and counterparties', Winston & Strawn LLP provides 'tremendous knowledge' to funds, strategic investors, institutional investors and financial institutions in relation to M&A and financings associated with conventional power and generation matters. Spearheaded by Richard Shutran, the firm's New York office is the primary location for conventional power work, with Jonathan Birenbaum and Tara Greenberg particularly appreciated for their 'knowledge across all aspects of projects, from investing to contract review, debt and equity'. San Francisco-based partner Joe Karp co-heads the energy practice group alongside Shutran, and has more of a renewables focus to his work in the power space.
The team benefits from amazing touch points within the industry across all types of projects and counterparties.
Jonathan Birenbaum and Tara Greenberg have excellent knowledge across all aspects of projects, from investing to contract review, debt and equity.
SteelRiver Infrastructure Fund North America
Burns & McDonnell, Inc.
AxInfra US LP
Capital Power Corporation
- Advised SteelRiver Infrastructure Fund North America in connection with its $1bn sale of Trans Bay Cable .
- Representing Burns & McDonnell, Inc on the development, financing, and sale of the approximately 1,060 MW gas-fired Beech Hollow Power Station.
- Represented Axium Infrastructure in connection with the refinancing of Brooklyn Navy Yard Cogeneration Partners.
- Represented Twin Eagle in the sale of its West Book, which included power sales agreements, OTC hedges, and bilateral swaps.
- Advised Capital Power Corporation in connection with its $300m acquisition from Oaktree Capital Management and its co-investors of the Arlington Valley 580 MW power plant.
Led out of New York by Kent Rowey, and able to leverage a huge international network, as well as deeply entrenched firmwide lender relationships, Allen & Overy LLP's six-partner projects, energy, natural resources and energy group's core strength lies in its ability to resource large cross-border financing mandates in the conventional power sector. A significant amount of the financing work handled by the team in the power generation space is underwritten by export credit agencies and development banks, particularly as it relates to Latin America work. New York-based partner Dorina Yessios frequently takes the lead on conventional power-based project financings with a Latin American nexus, while the return of Jean Lee to the firm's Washington DC office, following a five-year stint in the firm's Seoul office, further bolsters the US team's strength in relation to export credit agency project finance work.
BNP Paribas Fortis
- Advised various banks, including Citibank and Deutsche Bank, as mandated lead arrangers on a $1.3bn guaranteed facility by CESCE for the Peruvian state-owned entity, Petróleos del Perú – Petroperú S.A. to be used in the modernization of an oil refinery located in Peru.
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton
Drawing on the expertise of lawyers with corporate and finance competence within the energy sector, New York-headquartered firm Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton advises a wide range of stakeholders on transactional work traversing the electric power business, including as it relates to power generation, distribution and transmission. Often working alongside colleagues out of Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo, the majority of the team's work in the power sector has a Latin American focus. Cross-border restructuring expert Roger Cooper is regularly engaged in distressed power-related mandates and alongside finance and M&A partner Chantal Kordula recently advised the government of Puerto Rico in connection with the sale of its electricity generating assets and the concession of its electricity transmission and distribution assets.
- Represented Comisión Federal de Electricidad on its $615m notes offering to be dual listed on the Taipei Exchange and the Luxembourg Stock Exchange.
- Represented Argentine energy company Petroquímica Comodoro Rivadavia in connection with the $108m secured project financing for the construction, operation and maintenance of Parque Eólico del Bicentenario, a 125.2 MWac wind farm in the Province of Santa Cruz, Argentina.
- Represented BlackRock on the refinancing of a project finance facility used for the construction and development of BlackRock’s 130MW La Bufa wind farm in Zacatecas, Mexico.
- Counsel to an ad hoc group of secured project finance lenders in connection with the proposed restructuring of more than $1.67bn in total indebtedness of Constellation Oil Services Holding S.A. and its subsidiaries.
- Representation of the government of Puerto Rico in connection with the sale of its electricity generating assets and the concession of its electricity transmission and distribution assets.
Combining a strong regulatory offering out of Washington DC with financing and corporate transactional strength throughout the firm's national and international network of offices, Dentons is well-positioned to advise a range of stakeholders, including electrical transmission/generation developers and operators, cooperatives, lenders, utilities and municipalities, on domestic and cross-border conventional power mandates. Washington DC-based partner Clint Vince heads the firm's overarching energy practice, and although he is best-known for his regulatory/legislative and litigation prowess, also regularly provides the regulatory overlay on commercial and transactional power work handled by the firm.
Other key lawyers:
City Council of the City of New Orleans
Anterix (formerly pdvWireless)
Colorado Springs Utilities
Tenaska Marketing Ventures
- Advising New York Power Authority in its arrangements with offshore wind farm developer and northeaster US utilities company in their joint bid to develop, construct, own and operate an offshore wind farm.
- Providing strategic advice to Anterix in connection with its efforts to play a key role in the modernization of communications infrastructure in the nation’s various critical infrastructure sectors, and particularly in the utility sector.
- Assisting Colorado Springs Utilities on the structuring, implementation and expansion of its renewal energy RFP program.
Led from Houston by Jeffrey Schlegel and aided by numerous M&A and finance lawyers diffused throughout the country, Jones Day's energy team advises electrical utility providers, transmission entities, independent power producers and developers across the full range of corporate and commercial contracts associated with conventional power projects. The firm's capacity in the area was, however, weakened somewhat by the departure in January 2019 of Gerald Farano to Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP.
Although Mayer Brown previously handled some power-related M&A and financing work by dint of its cross-sector transactional strength, its focus in the space was galvanized at the beginning of 2019 by the arrival of New York-based partners Elena Rubinov and the 'very commercial' Frederick Lark from Bracewell LLP. Both partners have an excellent track record and have handled a plethora of high-profile M&A mandates for utilities companies and infrastructure funds in the power sector.
Great industry knowledge and outstanding ability to drive a deal to its conclusion.
Frederick Lark is very commercial, has a great grasp of key deal points and is a pleasure to work with.
Argo Infrastructure Partners
La Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec
- Represented SCANA Corporation in its merger with Dominion Energy, Inc.
- Advised Argo Infrastructure Partners on the acquisition of interests in Hudson Transmission Partners, the owner of a 660 MW HVDC subsea electric transmission system connecting PJM to NYISO from Ares EIF and Starwood Energy Group Global.
- Advising Dutch asset manager, PGGM, on the acquisition of a minority equity interest in the holding company of an electric and gas utility.
Although it has less of a pure conventional power focus than many of the firms in the rankings, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, LLP has successfully carved out a niche for itself acting as designated underwriters' counsel for energy companies on their capital markets activity. Spearheaded by New York-based partners Jeffrey Delaney and David Baxter, the scope of the firm's energy-related capital markets activity is broad and includes securing a variety of commoditized and highly structured debt financing on behalf of many utility companies.
Ameren Services Company / Union Electric Company (underwriters)
Arizona Public Service Company / Pinnacle West Capital Corporation (underwriters)
BNY Mellon Capital Markets
BofA Merrill Lynch
Citigroup Capital Markets
Consumers Energy Company / CMS Energy Corporation (underwriters)
Deutsche Bank Securities
DTE Energy Company / DTE Electric Company (underwriters)
Entergy (Arkansas, Gulf States, Louisiana, New Orleans, Mississippi, Texas) / Entergy Corp. (underwriters)
Goldman, Sachs & Co
Great Plains Energy Incorporated / Kansas City Power & Light Company / Westar Energy, Inc. / Kansas Gas and Electric Company (underwriters)
Kentucky Utilities Company / PPL Corporation
KeyBanc Capital Markets Inc.
Louisville Gas & Electric Company / PPL Corporation
Mitsubishi UFJ Securities
Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC
PPL Corporation / PPL Electric Utilities Corporation
Portland General Electric Company
RBC Capital Markets
Sierra Pacific Power Company / NV Energy (underwriters)
Southern California Edison Company / Edison International (underwriters)
Spire Inc. (formerly The Laclede Group Inc.) (underwriters)
SunTrust Robinson Humphrey
UBS Investment Bank
Wells Fargo Securities
- Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO) in connection with the issuance of $75m of HECO’s senior notes.
- Advised the underwriters, agents and insurance company purchasers on a number of capital markets issuances across a wide variety of security and offering types by publicly-traded CMS Energy Corporation and its principal subsidiary Consumers Energy Company.
- Advised the underwriters on capital markets issuances of registered notes by utility company Arizona Public Service Company.
- Advised the underwriters on capital markets issuances of Floating Rate First Mortgage Bonds by Consumers Energy Company.
Schiff Hardin LLP
Enhanced on the transactional front in March 2018 by the arrival of 'thoughtful and creative' New York-based corporate and finance expert Sarah Fitts from Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, Schiff Hardin LLP's multi-disciplinary energy team (which also draws upon experts in the environmental, construction and real estate groups) provides a 'very knowledgeable' service to utilities, developers, independent power producers and electric co-operatives. Fluent in Japanese, the 'brilliant' Fitts has strong ties with Japanese energy entities on inbound US-based work and also has niche expertise advising on matters relating to the growth of the electric automotive sector and its impact on the power industry.
The firm is very knowledgeable and has expertise about the industry.
Sarah Fitts is brilliant.
Sarah Fitts is a thoughtful, creative and sound advisor.
Chugoku Electric Power America, LLC
- Represented Chugoku Electric Power Company in a transaction for a combined-cycle gas-fired power plant in Ohio.
- Advising Macquarie Capital on its investment in a natural gas plant in West Virginia that is under development.
- Assisted EDP Renewables with development issues at two wind energy facilities in Illinois’ McLean County and Douglas County.
- Represented Toyota Tsusho Power America in the refinancing of its CPV Shore facility.
Primarily based out of the firm's New York office and also able to leverage international resources from across the EMEA region, Shearman & Sterling LLP is well-placed to advise strategic investors, funds, and lenders across the spectrum of domestic and cross-border power projects from a finance, M&A and restructuring perspective. The firm is particularly strong at handling project finance-related work for commercial lenders, as well as development banks and multilateral institutions. New York-based partner Gregory Tan is one of the primary contacts.
Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP
Led out of New York by corporate partner Marvin Goldstein , Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP's niche focus in the conventional power space is in relation to structuring commodities and derivatives agreements tailored to the relevant energy clients' trading, financial and credit needs. The team advises a wide array of stakeholders, including trading firms, investment banks, funds or end-users (whether in their capacity as a dealer or participant) across a range of energy-related structured finance matters, including in relation to derivatives, physical commodity transactions, swaps, options and cash-settled hybrid securities.
Castleton Commodities International
Merrill Lynch Commodities
Goldman Sachs & Co.
J. Aron Company
JPMorgan Chase Bank
ABN AMRO Bank
- Represented Merrill Lynch in connection with the emergence of the Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery from bankruptcy.
- Represented Freepoint Commodities in the refinancing of a $2bn syndicated secured credit facility arranged by BNP Paribas, MUFG Bank and Natixis.
- Advised Mirae Asset Securities (USA) LLC on rights and remedies vis-à-vis a defaulting repo borrower as well as securities and bankruptcy law issues relating to alleged financial fraud committed by Live Well Financial.
- Advised J. Aron & Company LLC on maintaining secured hedges during pendency and after exit from Chapter 11 case of Halcon Resources Corporation.
- Represented Merrill Lynch in providing private equity firm One Rock Capital with $340m in financing for its acquisition of a crude oil refinery in Oahu, Hawaii from Chevron.