Carlos Urrutia > Brigard Urrutia > Bogota, Colombia > Lawyer Profile

Brigard Urrutia
CALLE 70A #4-41
BOGOTA
Colombia

Work Department

Banking and Financial Services; Natural Resources and Environmental Law

Position

Partner

Career

Senior Partner at Brigard Urrutia. Mr. Urrutia attended the Johns Hopkins University for two years of undergraduate studies, and then transferred to the Universidad de los Andes, in Bogotá Colombia, to pursue his legal education; he graduated in 1974 and obtained a Doctor at Law degree.

Between 1975 and 1977, Mr. Urrutia was appointed Secretary General of the Governorship of the State of Cundinamarca, and subsequently Secretary of Finance. In 1977, Mr. Urrutia joined Brigard Urrutia and was made a Partner in 1981. Mr. Urrutia served as the firm’s Managing Partner between 2000 and 2012. From August 2012 to November 2013, Mr. Urrutia was Ambassador of Colombia to the United States of America.

In 2014, he returned to Brigard Urrutia as Senior Partner.

During his 41 years career at the firm, Mr. Urrutia has advised clients in a wide variety of matters, concentrating in natural resources, aviation law, commercial law, banking, international financial transactions, arbitration and litigation, particularly in the context of complex cost overrun claims arising under construction contracts.

Brigard Urrutia has been involved in many of the most important transactions that have taken place in the past six years and has represented clients in landmark cases involving disputes before the courts and arbitration panels (national and international).

Mr. Urrutia’s clients are some of the world’s leading national and multinational companies, as well as banks and financial institutions with interests in Colombia.

In addition to Spanish, Mr. Urrutia is fluent in English and French.

Languages

Spanish, English and French

Memberships

American Bar Association (ABA) and International Bar Association (IBA)

Education

Lawyer from Universidad de los Andes.

Lawyer Rankings

Colombia > Energy and natural resources

Brigard Urrutia finds favour for its ability to ‘very effectively integrate the different disciplines that can contribute to the solution of a particular problem‘, with sources attesting that this ensures ‘decisions always have the benefit of having been built holistically’. The firm houses a deep and broad energy and natural resources practice, which routinely advises key industry participants on the full life cycle of matters, from regulatory issues, through to finance and corporate transactions. Among the names to note, managing partner Carlos Umaña is recognised for his specialist focus on infrastructure, procurement, utility and natural resources law, while senior partner Carlos Urrutia is sought after for his broad commercial practice that spans regulatory, contentious and transactional work. The department also draws on the senior experience of energy regulation expert Claudia Navarro, who is well versed in both the electric and natural gas spheres, transactional specialist Jaime Robledo and associate director Marianna Boza, who spearheads the firm’s mining and oil and gas group. The practice also leans on a talented band of more junior lawyers, including senior associate Juan Carlos Padilla, who joined in June 2021 from Transportadora de Gas Internacional.

Colombia > Banking and finance

According to satisfied clients, Brigard Urrutia ‘focuses on providing a quality service‘. A longstanding heavyweight in the banking and finance arena, the firm houses one of the most comprehensive practices in the market and routinely advises on the full spread of related issues, from syndicated loans and project financings, through to fintech and regulatory-related matters. Among the names to note, infrastructure specialist César Felipe Rodríguez is commended for his ‘exceptional knowledge in project financing‘. Rodríguez also shines in acquisition finance; he notably acted as Colombian deal counsel to AT&T Services, Open Plaza Corp and the guarantor subsidiaries on a $506.1m financing from AT&T to Open Plaza, as part of the LBO of AT&T-owned Vrio Corp. High-profile name Carlos Fradique-Méndez handles a mix of transactional and regulatory matters, with strong skill sets in banking, finance, capital markets and private equity. Felipe Alarcón, a former Deputy Director at the Financial Superintendence, is particularly sought after for his expertise in financial regulation. Dual-qualified (Colombia/New York) María Fernanda Diago is well versed in advising both borrowers and lenders on cross-border transactions — as is senior partner Carlos Urrutia, who enjoys a strong international profile both due to his premier banking experience and his background as a former Ambassador of Colombia to the US. At the associate level, María Fernanda Sánchez and Juan Eduardo Gómez are recommended.

Colombia > Corporate and M&A

According to satisfied clients, Brigard Urrutia is distinguished by ‘its quality of work, efficiency and agility‘. A transactional powerhouse, the firm leverages its full-service model to pack a punch in advising major national and multinational companies on the full spread of corporate and M&A matters — across all business sectors. The group demonstrates adroit handling of headline-grabbing deals for both sellers and acquirers, and it is also well-equipped to advise on compliance and non-transactional matters. High-profile M&A co-head Sergio Michelsen Jaramillo is an instantly recognisable name for corporate deals and brings to bear over three decades of experience on sophisticated transactions. Michelsen recently teamed up with dual-qualified (Colombia/New York) corporate heavyweight Jaime Robledo and up-and-coming specialist Tomás Holguín to advise former shareholders of Productos Familia (including Valores Industriales, Reforestadora y Manufacturera los Retiros and members of the Gómez family) on one of the year’s marquee deals: Essity’s $1.5bn acquisition of approximately 44% of Productos Familia through a tender offer. In another cross-border highlight, Darío Laguado Giraldo teamed up with corporate finance expert Carlos Fradique-Méndez to act as local counsel to Alpha Capital CFG on its acquisition, out of bankruptcy, of the payroll loan portfolio of Alpha Latam Management and its subsidiaries in Colombia. Other key partners include Álvaro Cala, who specialises in the aviation and real estate sectors, Fernando Alfredo Castillo, who has a good record in cross-border work, as well as managing partner Carlos Umaña and senior partner Carlos Urrutia. The department also benefits from a deep bench of associates, including dual-qualified Paola Ordoñez (M&A), Laura Ricardo Ayerbe (M&A, corporate and commercial) and Barranquilla-based Andrea Camila Cruz (M&A, corporate and commercial). Two changes in September 2021 saw Ángela García Páez promoted to director within the corporate and M&A team, while former senior associate Daniel Moncaleano left to join Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP in the US.