Firm Profile > Milbank > New York, United States
55 HUDSON YARDS
NEW YORK, NY 10001
Milbank > The Legal 500 Rankings
Commercial lending Tier 1
Milbank has 'a very high quality' lender-facing practice that enjoys huge respect throughout the market. Practice group leader Marc Hanrahan is one of the best known and most experienced leveraged finance lawyers in the market, and his team is packed with star names including Marcus Dougherty, Lauren Hanrahan, Michael Bellucci, Jerome McCluskey, and the recently promoted Charles Stern. The firm was involved in several major deals, which included advising Goldman Sachs, Barclays, Credit Suisse, and Jefferies as lead arrangers on the financing of Cerberus Capital Management's acquisition of Subsea Communications. The firm also advised the lenders, including Goldman Sachs, Jefferies and Macquarie Capital on KKR's multibillion-dollar acquisition of BMC Software. In another standout highlights, the team advised the lenders on The Carlyle Group and GIC's multibillion-dollar buyout of AkzoNobel Specialty Chemicals.
Milbank assists debt and equity investors, private sponsors and government lenders in the development, financing, acquisition and disposal of renewable energy projects. New York-based Daniel Bartfeld and Roland Estevez advised a syndicate of lenders on the $435m project financing of Aela Energía’s wind portfolio, which includes the 129MW Aurora project and the 170MW Sarco project located in Chile. Other contacts in the global projects, energy and infrastructure finance department include Jonathan Green and Eric Silverman, both of whom are based in the firm's New York office. Goldman Sachs, Pattern Energy and Onyx Renewable Partners are also among the team's clients.
‘Strong in court and in negotiating out-of-court resolutions’, Milbank is ‘extremely experienced, sophisticated and able to help clients navigate a very difficult and complicated negotiation’. In Chapter 11 cases, across a variety of industries, the firm is recommended ‘if you are facing a restructuring and you want the right lawyers at your side’. The group assists distressed debtors, official and ad hoc committees of creditors, leading financial institutions and hedge funds. The New York-based Dennis Dunne is ‘the best at what he does’ and is practice co-head with Paul Aronzon, who works from the Los Angeles office. They lead a ‘very commercial and practical’ team which includes the well-regarded Samuel Khalil, finance and restructuring expert Tyson Lomazow, and ‘trustworthy negotiator’ Gerald Uzzi, as well as experienced associate Matthew Brod - all based in New York. The practice represented the official committee of unsecured creditors in the Chapter 11 cases of TK Holdings and its affiliated debtors, which was one of the world’s largest producers of automobile safety products; after the company became distressed due to issues around malfunctioning airbags, the firm was able to negotiate for almost full recovery for creditors with non-contingent, liquidated claims. In another highlight, the department is representing Westinghouse, a global presence in nuclear technology design and construction, which filed for Chapter 11 protection in 2017 with reported assets in the amount of $4bn and liabilities in the amount of $9bn; the firm is advising on the the day-to-day operations of the company, as well as overseeing the process of marketing it for a sale and negotiating the terms of the transaction.
‘Always prepared’, the ‘creative’ team at Milbank is known for ‘providing solutions - not problems’. The team handles a range of aviation-related transactions, with expertise across acquisition and warehouse financing, secured portfolio financing, ABS, EETCs, private placements, structured financing, AFIC and ECA financing, as well as, aviation M&A deals, IPOs, JVs and aircraft portfolio acquisitions and disposals. Global head of the transportation and space group Drew Fine, Helfried Schwarz, London-based Mark Stamp and Dean Sattler advised Terra Firma on the sale of AWAS, a $7.5bn Dublin-based aircraft leasing company to Dubai Aerospace Enterprise. Fine and London-based James Cameron advised Citi and BNP Paribas, as structuring agents and bookrunners, on the $722.5m ABS for KDAC Aviation Finance. Fine also advised Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) on its JV agreement with GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS) to create a new global aircraft financing platform. Elsewhere, James Pascale acted for the note purchasers and lenders in a $306m private placement and loan transaction for Atlas/Titan Aviation to finance six converted Boeing 767 freighters on lease to Amazon. Special counsel Freyda Mechlowicz is also a key figure. Named individuals are based in the firm’s New York office otherwise stated.
Latin America is a key focus of Milbank’s global capital markets practice, which also brings to bear significant experience in Europe and Asia-related offerings. The New York-based group, noted for its ‘stellar bank relationships’, is widely acknowledged as a leader in debt-related transactions for both managers and issuers; it is also well versed in equity matters. Global capital markets head Marcelo Mottesi attracts praise for his ‘great Latin America practice’ and recently advised the initial purchasers on Hunt Oil Company of Peru’s inaugural $600m bond offering. On the equity side, Carlos Albarracin advised Grupo Energía Bogotá and its controlling shareholder, the District of Bogota, on a $669m secondary offering of common stock. The firm has also recently undertaken work for issuers such as Cometa Energia and Transportadora de Gas Internacional, as well as underwriters such as Deutsche Bank Securities and Goldman Sachs.
Milbank acts for debt and equity investors, private-sector project sponsors and government lenders in a variety of conventional power projects. The New York-based energy, infrastructure and finance group is jointly led by Daniel Bartfeld, Jonathan Green and Eric Silverman, and includes senior associate is Richard Hillman, who advises lenders and sponsors on a range of US and international project and structured finance transactions. The team recently advised Actis on its acquisition of InterGen’s Mexican portfolio of businesses for a consolidated enterprise value of $1.3bn. Other key clients include Credit Agricole, Entegra and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking.
Milbank has a deep bench of securities litigators in New York and climbs the ranking this year. The firm has a stellar roster of financial services clients and it is regarded as a leading firm for investment advisers and mutual funds. Firm chair Scott Edelman, litigation and arbitration group leader Daniel Perry and global head of litigation and arbitration George Canellos are the key names in the practice, along with highly-rated litigator Sean Murphy. Canellos is highly recommended for enforcement matters and his recent work includes acting for the founder of Canyon Bridge Capital Partners in connection with a federal government investigation of trading activity in the securities of Lattice Semiconductor Corp. Katherine Goldstein is also recommended for enforcement matters. Murphy, Robert Hora and James Cavoli acted for insurer AXA in a $1bn excessive-fees case. Edelman and Perry successfully defended a securities fraud class action for the former CEO and CIO of Embraer SA.
Noted for its 'extensive knowledge of the CLO market', Milbank was ranked in multiple league tables as the number one legal adviser for collateral managers in the US CLO space. Moreover, the CLO team was further strengthened by the hire of 'best-in-class' Sean Solis, who handled several reset and new-issue CLOs for Wellfleet Credit Partners. Jay Grushkin heads the practice group and acts for some of the team's most active clients, including BlueMountain Capital, PGIM, BlackRock and ICG Debt Advisors. Similarly, Deborah Festa, who divides her time between Los Angeles and New York, is engaged by GSO Capital Partners, KKR Credit Advisors and Credit Suisse Asset Management, the last of which is among the market's largest CLO managers by assets under management. In addition to CLOs, the team also has experience in esoteric ABS, where Blair Tyson advised Goldman Sachs & Co, Mizuho Securities and JP Morgan as underwriters on a first-of-its-kind large-scale securitization of FCC spectrum licenses.
Milbank's team comprises numerous former federal prosecutors and SEC attorneys, and has a strong focus on the financial services industry. New York-based global chair George Canellos has significant experience in investigations and at trial and, together with Katherine Goldstein, defended Benjamin Chow, founder and managing partner of Canyon Bridge Capital Partners, against a 14-count indictment, including securities fraud and conspiracy to commit securities fraud, in the Southern District of New York; the client was found not guilty on six counts after a two-week jury trial. In another highlight, the group led all aspects of a multi-jurisdictional investigation into potential manipulation of Libor and Euribor for Rabobank Coöperatieve, advising the client on remedial measures, communications strategy and representation before global regulators. New York's Daniel Perry, Scott Edelman and Antonia Apps are also names to note.
General commercial disputes Tier 3
2018 was another busy year for the litigation group at Milbank; the firm is particularly strong in the financial services sector – and is regularly engaged by well-known banks and insurance companies – although its client base extends beyond the financial industry to include corporates from a range of sectors. Sean Murphy and Robert Hora's trial victory for Hartford Funds (as defendant) in a mutual fund ‘excessive fee’ lawsuit was affirmed in 2018 when the case was appealed to the Third Circuit. Another success came in the form of a Second Circuit win for client BMI against the DOJ in a closely watched case concerning fractional licensing; Scott Edelman, Atara Miller and Fiona Schaeffer led the team. Grant Mainland made partner in 2018. George Canellos is the global head of litigation and arbitration, and Daniel Perry is the practice group leader.
Focusing heavily on telecom financing, as well as space and satellite work, the team at Milbank is also notable for its strong cross-border capabilities. The team is jointly led by space and satellite experts Dara Panahy and Peter Nesgos, based in Washington DC and New York respectively. Among recent work, the firm handles financing for WorldVu (d/b/a/ OneWeb), securing $2bn of equity investments along with $3bn of debt financing for the company's non-geostationary satellite constellation; advised Qatari satellite operator Es'hailSat on the full acquisition of a satellite previously operated as joint venture with Eutelsat; and advised Iridium on a $360m note issue. Indonesian satellite operator Pasifik Satelit Nusantara retained the firm in connection with $168m of project financing for its PSN VI satellite project, as well as negotiating procurement and launch agreements. In addition to its representation of satellite companies, the firm also acts for financial clients, and recently advised ING Group on the development of an industry-first financing arrangement for MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates, using future receivables from satellite sales as collateral. Following the publication of the guide, Patrick Campbell joined the firm from Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP. A significant hire for the team, Campbell has a wealth of experience across the telecoms space, working with wireline, wireless and satellite companies as well as private equity clients.
US taxes: non-contentious Tier 3
Milbank's New York team focuses on developing tax-efficient structures and advising on the tax implications of various transactions in the telecoms, private equity, infrastructure and renewable energy sectors. The firm also handles executive and employee benefits taxation and restructuring matters. Drew Batkin has experience of the tax aspects of complex partnerships, joint ventures and M&A transactions in the energy and infrastructure space, and practice head Russell Kestenbaum is a key contact for the tax aspects of IPOs, debt issuances and fund structuring. Max Goodman and Michael Duff are key figures in Los Angeles.
Capital markets: debt Tier 4
Milbank’s debt capital markets practice handles a diverse range of acquisition finance-related matters, project bond deals and sovereign bond transactions. Highlighted by sources for its ‘stellar financial institution relationships’, the group continues to be weighted towards underwriter-side mandates, although it also handles a significant volume of issuer-side work particularly in the aviation, infrastructure and energy spheres. Highlights included Brett Nadritch and James Pascale advising a group of investment banks, led by Credit Suisse Securities (USA) and Citigroup Global Markets, on United Airlines’ $935m offering of enhanced equipment trust certificates. Nadritch also advised the underwriters on two offerings of senior notes by ITC Holdings totaling $1bn. Among its work for issuers, Paul Denaro acted for the Government of Bermuda in its $620m bond offering. The New York-based group also includes global capital markets head Marcelo Mottesi and US securities lead Rod Miller.
‘A great firm for global offerings’, Milbank distinguishes itself by its ‘close banking relationships’ and its ‘international-facing practice’. The New York-centered group, which routinely handles work for both issuers and underwriters, has a diverse sector focus, but is particularly experienced in the infrastructure, energy and transportation areas. Rod Miller heads the US securities practice and, together with Paul Denaro, advised the managers on Brookfield Infrastructure Partners’ $700m offering of limited partnership units. On the issuer side, Miller advised MGM Growth Properties on its $386.6m follow-on offering. Also recommended is Latin America specialist Marcelo Mottesi, who heads the global capital markets practice.
Milbank’s institutional relationships with major lenders marks it as a solid manager-side firm; however, its increasingly prominent work for issuers was also a driving force of the practice during 2018, with particularly impressive transactions for energy and gaming companies. Most notably, US securities lead Rod Miller advised MGM Resorts International on its $1bn senior notes offering, while Brett Nadritch advised Nabors Industries on a $800m high-yield offering. On the manager front, Miller and Benjamin Miles acted alongside the firm’s leveraged finance team to advise the initial purchasers for the euro and dollar-denominated senior unsecured notes in connection with KKR’s acquisition of BMC software — the bond portion of the transaction was worth $1.8bn. The New York-based Paul Denaro is another key figure.
Based in the New York office, the team at Milbank advises debt and equity investors, private sponsors and government lenders in various types of oil and gas projects, including exploration, production, refining, transmission and transportation, and storage facilities. In one matter, Daniel Michalchuk acted for a group of lenders in connection with the $3bn financing for Dominion’s Cove Point LNG import and export facility, which includes related gas storage and pipeline facilities. Other contacts in the global projects, energy and infrastructure finance group include Daniel Bartfeld, Jonathan Green and Eric Silverman. Société Générale and EIG Global Energy Partners are among the department's key clients.
The alternative investment group at Milbank has been engaged by prominent swap dealers and industry associations in credit derivative transactions and strategic regulatory matters. John Williams and Eric Moser are key contacts in the department. Clients have included Bank of America, Goldman Sachs and Credit Suisse.
M&A: large deals ($1bn+) Tier 5
Milbank has an extensive record in big-ticket M&A with strong teams on both the East and West coasts. The firm is also noted for its frequent engagements as counsel to financial advisors to M&A transactions. It is 'what a great law firm should aspire to' with 'partners that are loyal and dedicated to the firm, their clients, and fellow partners'. Team members 'hit it out of the park day-in and day-out' and the department 'proves its value on every deal it works on' and 'always thinks a few steps ahead, which avoids unnecessary surprises'. The team is increasingly active in private equity and advised Actis on its $1.25bn acquisition of the power generation assets of InterGen Servicios Mexico; the firm is a recognized leader in cross-border transactions involving Latin America. It also advised Advent International on its $3.25bn acquisition of General Electric’s distributed power unit; this is just one example of the firm's immense record in energy-sector deals. John Franchini leads the global corporate group and 'is highly available and engaged on all the transactions'. Scott Golenbock and Dean Sattler are also key names in the team; the latter advised AirAsia, Asia’s largest low-cost airline, on its agreement to sell its aircraft leasing operations to BBAM, one of the world's biggest investors in commercial jet aircraft. M&A specialist and former managing partner of the Los Angeles office Kenneth Baronsky joined Sidley Austin LLP.
Real estate2 Tier 5
Milbank focuses on the finance side of real estate matters including transactions, debt, preferred equity investments, fund and joint venture structures, construction, bridge and term mortgage loans, commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS), mezzanine loans, non-performing loan acquisitions and sales. The firm also handles inbound and outbound cross-border transactions in the US, Asia, Europe, Canada and the Middle East. The three-partner team is headed by Kevin O’Shea, who recently advised Eldorado Resorts on its $1.85bn acquisition of Tropicana Entertainment. Another highlight included acting for Sahara on the $600m sale of its controlling 75% stake in the Plaza Hotel in New York. Yaakov Sheinfeld advised a joint venture of TPG Real Estate and Gramercy Property Trust, a publicly traded REIT, on a mortgage and mezzanine financing facility from Acore Capital to acquire single-tenant office buildings across the US. Erwin Dweck has advised Oxford Properties Group on multiple transactions, while other clients include Pacific Investment Management Company, JP Morgan Chase, State General Reserve Fund of the Sultanate of Oman, SL Green Realty and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation. All partners are based in New York.
The 'highly engaged' and 'very knowledgeable' team at Milbank impresses clients with its 'great team spirit' and 'high quality of work'. Despite its compact size, the group has a breadth of sector strength that is comparable to many bigger firms in the market. Pharmaceutical specialists Errol Taylor and Fredrick Zullow obtained a favourable and precedential Federal Circuit decision for plaintiff Orexo, which had filed for patent infringement against Actavis after it had filed an Abbreviated New Drug Application for a generic version of Orexo's opioid drug medication Zubsolv. Christopher Gaspar, who specializes in electrical-, semiconductor-, computer-, financial-services-, and medical device-related cases, and Los Angeles-based practice head Mark Scarsi successfully defended Fujitsu Network Communications against a suit filed by Capella Photonics regarding optical telecommunication patents, obtaining favourable decisions from the PTAB and the Federal Circuit before the plaintiff petitioned for a writ of certiorari in the Supreme Court. Google, Knickerbocker Bed and Emeram Capital Partners also feature on the client roster.
Cross-border project finance mandates are a key area of expertise for the team at Milbank, which is active across lender and sponsor-side mandates. In an example of its cross-border expertise, Carolina Walther-Meade and Daniel Bartfeld, who heads the project, energy and infrastructure finance group, advised EIG Global Energy Partners and its subsidiary Cerro Dominador on the financing of a 110MW concentrated solar thermal power plant in addition to a 100MW photovoltaic solar power plant in the Antofagasta region in Chile. Bartfeld also acted for Centrais Eléctricas de Sergipe (CELSE) in connection with the development and greenfield project financing of Porto de Sergipe I Thermoelectric Complex in Porto de Sergipe, Brazil. In the domestic market, Allan Marks in Los Angeles advised Onyx Renewable Partners on its tax equity partnership with RBC Capital Markets for the financing of 16 solar PV projects across six states. Jonathan Green and Eric Silverman, who co-chair of the project, energy and infrastructure finance practice, are also recommended, as are Roland Estevez, Daniel Michalchuk, William Bice, Jaime Ramirez and Alec Borisoff, who is noted for his mining-sector expertise. Karen Wong and Timothy Wendling in Los Angeles are also key figures, as are senior associate Richard Hillman and associate Jeffrey Leider. Named individuals are based in New York unless otherwise stated.
Milbank > Firm Profile
THE FIRM: For over 150 years, Milbank has provided innovative legal solutions in many of the world’s largest, most complex, “first-ever” corporate transactions and disputes. Milbank’s clients are prominent multinational financial, industrial and commercial enterprises, governments, institutions and individuals. In the US, Milbank has a headquarters office in New York as well as offices in Los Angeles and Washington, DC.
TYPES OF WORK UNDERTAKEN
Capital Markets/Securities: Milbank represents sellers, purchasers and financial intermediaries in international debt/equity offerings, derivatives/synthetic products, public utility financings, financial institution financings, project financing in capital markets, and domestic and foreign government financings.
Corporate/M&A/Private Equity: Milbank counsels clients on negotiated and hostile transactions in mergers and consolidations, stock/asset acquisitions and dispositions, strategic alliances, joint ventures, proxy contests/tender offers, leveraged/management buyouts, restructurings/bankruptcy reorganizations, and corporate governance and executive compensation matters. The firm represents participants in private equity investing, structuring, negotiating, executing and financing private equity, ‘going-private’, recapitalizations and exit transactions.
Executive Compensation & Benefits: Milbank advises on corporate transactions and financial restructurings, including advising the boards of directors and compensation committees on the design and implementation of compensation and change-in-control programs.
Financial Restructuring: Milbank is recognized for its expertise in connection with the largest, most complex bankruptcies and reorganizations. The firm represents companies needing financial restructuring, creditor committees, financial institutions and hedge funds, lenders, equity security holders, acquirers, trustees and receivers.
Gaming & Hospitality: Milbank has represented the world’s most well-known names in gaming and hospitality, private equity, restructuring, bankruptcy, private/public financings, joint ventures and long-term management deals. The firm represents lenders, bondholders, opportunity funds, private equity funds, management companies, institutional investors and owners of hotel, resort and gaming properties.
Global Leveraged Finance: Milbank advises financial institutions, companies and private equity clients on leveraged transactions, including senior, subordinated/mezzanine debt transactions, bridge financings and high yield bond offerings. This group has experience structuring complex debt instruments used in multi-jurisdictional transactions, including financings for cross-border acquisitions and multi-currency credit facilities.
Latin America: Milbank has extensive experience in project financing, capital markets, privatizations, mergers and acquisitions, debt-for-equity conversions, corporate and public sector restructurings, and banking and financial services in Latin America.
Litigation & Arbitration: Milbank’s litigators serve as lead counsel in some of the largest, most high profile disputes in the world. The firm represents clients in multi-jurisdiction securities litigations, white-collar/regulatory investigations, and complex disputes involving intellectual property, insurance, mergers/acquisitions, antitrust, and commercial litigation. Cases involve federal securities laws, patent infringement, corporate control contests, accounting fraud, and financial restructurings. Unrivalled in mutual fund class action and derivative litigation, the team has been involved in more 1940 Act cases than any other law firm in the US.
Project, Energy & Infrastructure Finance: Milbank represents leading players, such as debt and equity investors, private sponsors and government lenders, in the financing and development of the world’s most critical and pioneering infrastructure projects. In the past three years, the group has acted as legal advisor in over 175 energy and infrastructure-related matters worldwide and raised more than $90 billion of capital for a wide variety of transactions, including power (renewable and conventional), oil/gas, energy, transportation (roads, airports, subways, ports) and other infrastructure projects.
Real Estate: Milbank’s real estate group advises leading financial institutions, investment banks, private equity funds, hedge funds, pension funds, REITS and sovereign wealth funds. The group has extensive experience with complex deals including structuring, negotiating and closing all varieties of equity and debt transactions.
Structured Credit: Milbank represents both lenders and borrowers in debt financings involving distressed credits, asset-based loans secured by illiquid pools of collateral and loans to private investment funds secured by specified investments and/or capital commitments.
Structured Finance & Securitizations: Milbank advises on an array of non-traditional financial investments, products and strategies: specialty finance (including distressed and special situations investment), structured finance, derivatives/commodities, credit arbitrage, fund formation and institutional finance/private placements.
Tax: Milbank’s tax lawyers are leaders in developing innovative financial products and arrangements for corporations raising and investing funds in the international capital markets and structures for mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures and both majority and minority equity investments.
Technology & Outsourcing: A leader in information technology and outsourcing transactions, Milbank has advised in more than 600 transactions in over 90 countries, with a combined deal value exceeding $150 billion.
Transportation & Space: As a premier provider of advice to the aviation and space industries, Milbank’s transportation finance group’s transactions are routinely singled out for originality and prominence.
Trusts, Estates & Exempt Organizations: Milbank serves prominent individuals and institutions in estate planning, trust and estate administration and litigation, and charitable giving. This group advises institutional fiduciaries and exempt organizations.
Top Tier Firm Rankings
- Commercial lending
- Energy: renewable/alternative power
- Restructuring (including bankruptcy): corporate
- Transport: aviation and air travel - finance
- Capital markets: global offerings
- Energy: transactions: conventional power
- Securities litigation - defense
- Structured finance: securitization
- Corporate investigations and white-collar criminal defense
- General commercial disputes
- Telecoms and broadcast: transactional
- US taxes: non-contentious
- Capital markets: debt
- Capital markets: equity offerings
- Capital markets: high-yield debt offerings
- Energy: transactions: oil and gas
- Structured finance: derivatives and structured products
- M&A: large deals ($1bn+)
- Real estate
- Real estate2
- Patents: litigation (full coverage)
- Project finance