Carlos Viana > White & Case LLP > Miami, United States > Lawyer Profile

White & Case LLP
Southeast Financial Center
200 South Biscayne Boulevard, Suite 4900
Miami, Florida 33131-2352
United States
Carlos Viana photo

Work Department

Project Development and Finance, Power, Oil & Gas, Mining & Metals, Latin America, Infrastructure




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Lawyer Rankings

Latin America: International firms > Banking and finance

(Leading individuals)

Carlos VianaWhite & Case LLP

White & Case LLP ‘s deep commitment to Latin America has resulted in an especially loyal and ever-expanding client base. While the international firm has an outstanding reputation among global banks, the Latin America team has also managed to build a hugely impressive borrower client base in the region. It is unique in being a New York-headquartered firm with a substantial presence in Miami, Mexico City and Sao Paulo, along with a growing practice in Houston. It is also one of few international firms to have significant financing expertise in Sao Paulo. The practice represents a range of major borrowers in Brazil and the Andean region, particularly in the energy, infrastructure and financial institutions sectors. It advised major client Petrobras (and subsidiary Petrobras Global Trading) on a $4.35bn revolving credit facility provided by 17 international banks. The firm is also gaining ground in Mexico where it advised a syndicate of lenders to Petrolera Cárdenas Mora, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Egypt-based Cheiron Petroleum Corporation, on the first-ever reserve-based lending transaction in the upstream oil-and-gas assets sector in Mexico; the bank syndicate was led by Natixis and the transaction was jointly led by the firm’s Mexico City, Houston and London offices. In another landmark deal it advised the lead banks on the $640m project financing to Techgen, for a natural gas-fired combined-cycle 900MW electric power plant in the Pesquería area of the State of Nuevo León, Mexico. Other clients include Atlas Renewable Energy, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Central Puerto, Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, Fibria Cellulose and Wells Fargo. The team ‘has the knowledge and experience to provide an accurate service for transactions in Latin America‘, is ‘always available to support and provide any legal advice while in the middle of a negotiation and transaction‘, is commended for its language skills and its Miami office, which is ‘an excellent venue to schedule meetings between all the parties involved in the transactions‘. It is also praised for its ‘reliability‘, ‘availability‘ and ‘control of every single step of the negotiation/transaction‘. Miami partner Carlos Viana has an outstanding reputation in Latin America finance, while New York’s Sabrena Silver has helped to cement connections to New York-based banks. Sao Paulo leader Donald Baker has played a pivotal role in developing the firm’s esteemed Brazilian client base and is ‘an extremely good and effective lawyer and marketer‘, while fellow Sao Paulo partner John Anderson is winning many market allocades; ‘practical and pragmatic‘, he is ‘very good, nice to deal with‘ and ‘is good at telling his clients what they should be asking for and knows when to rein people in for their own good‘. Washington DC partner Victor DeSantisknows his way around a transaction‘ and ‘has a lot of respect from his clients who will trust him when he tells them to do something‘. Miami’s Christian Hansen is a key name in aviation finance, while emerging names Jeannine Acevedo and newly-elected partner Thomas Pate split their time between New York and Miami. Miami counsel Anna Andreeva and associate Ana Maria Arias are ‘outstanding professionals‘.

Latin America: International firms > City focus: Miami

White & Case LLP has a highly prestigious team in Miami, which forms a central component in its esteemed Latin America practice. The Miami office has an immense record in acquisition, structured and project finance, with noted projects specialist Carlos Viana leading the firm’s Latin America practice group. He and Washington DC project finance partner Victor DeSantis advised the lead banks on the $640m project financing to Techgen, for a natural gas-fired combined-cycle 900MW electric power plant in the Pesquería area of the state of Nuevo León, Mexico. Viana also led the team that advised Atlas Renewable Energy, the Latin America-focused renewable energy business, on its $114m long-term financing for two solar power projects in Uruguay. Christian Hansen is noted for aviation finance, while Jeannine Acevedo and newly-minted partner Thomas Pate divide their time between New York and Miami, focusing on power and infrastructure finance throughout Latin America. Miami capital markets partner Mark Bagnall has a number of key corporate issuer relationships in Latin America, including Brazilian clients such as Oi, which he advised on its recent $20bn debt restructuring. Miami counsel Anna Andreeva is also highly rated.

Latin America: International firms > Projects and energy

(Leading individuals)

Carlos VianaWhite & Case LLP

White & Case LLP has impressed in power sector financings, notably in Argentina, Chile, Peru and Uruguay, while it is building up its profile in Mexico. As a global firm, it might be closely associated with the world’s leading lenders, but its eminence in Latin America has also attracted a wealth of sponsor and borrower clients. It has a burgeoning presence in project development, construction and equity investments, and is noted for its transport infrastructure expertise and its experience in project bonds. Its growing team in Houston is also bringing it even further closer to the region, particularly in renewables and oil and gas. Recent mandates include advising Goldman Sachs, IDB Invest, IFC and Swiss Export Risk Insurance (SERV) on the $1.8bn financing for the design, construction and operation of a 1,516MW thermoelectric power plant in Sergipe, Brazil – the financing involved an investment-grade, senior secured notes and loan to a Luxembourg special purpose vehicle; and Atlas Renewable Energy, on its $114m long-term financing for two solar power projects in Uruguay. According to one client, ‘the team adds value to the analysis of a transaction by way of combining its knowledge, its negotiation skills and its flexibility for last minute calls or communications‘. It is praised for its ‘combination of different levels of expertise‘ and ‘lawyers who speak various languages‘ which contributes to successful drafting, negotiating and closing. Overall, the ‘team is hard-working, skillful and attentive to lenders’ needs‘, ‘has an enviable experience in the project finance sphere, particularly in power and involving ECAs and development banks‘. Head of the Latin America group Carlos Viana is based in Miami and is praised for his ‘availability‘, ‘deep knowledge and experience in project finance‘, and his ‘broad industry network‘. Sao Paulo’s John Anderson is widely acclaimed, particularly for projects in Brazil and Peru, including hybrid loan and bond financings. Mexico City partner Sean Goldstein is helping the firm to build its standing in Mexico and Brazil. Houston partner Steven Otillar has played a key role in developing the firm’s Latin America oil-and-gas practice throughout the upstream, midstream and downstream segments; and the recent arrivals of William Parish, Rodrigo Dominguez and counsel Emilio Grandio-Urrea to the Houston office from Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP have served to further heighten the firm’s standing in Latin America oil-and-gas and renewables projects. In Washington DC, Victor DeSantis is another prominent name in the market; while in Miami, Jeannine Acevedo has ‘deep knowledge and experience in Latin America project finance‘, and Thomas Pate is ‘always available and very professional‘ and ‘cognisant of clients’ needs‘. Also in Miami, counsel Anna Andreevahas shown outstanding negotiation capacities, with a superior talent for bringing the right arguments to the table and articulating her client’s wishes to the counterparty‘. In New York, the increasingly energy and infrastructure-focused corporate practitioner Armando Rivera Jacobo arrived from Debevoise & Plimpton LLP  in July 2019.