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Winston & Strawn LLP

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Allen Miller

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Winston & Strawn

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Latin America: International firms

Banking and finance

Within: Banking and finance

Winston & Strawn LLP significantly enhanced its Latin America credentials in 2017, by hiring a team of prominent Latin America specialists from Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP, the group being part of legacy Chadbourne & Parke’s well-reputed Latin America practice. The team is known for its Latin American corporate client base and its connections to a number of Latin America-focused private equity houses. It provides ‘an excellent service, permanent support, knowledge and command of the required topics, agility and responsiveness’. One client also highlights its ‘warmth, disposition and availability at all times’. The team advised Pampa Energía and its subsidiaries Central Térmica Loma de la Lata and Greenwind on the proposed senior corporate loan to the latter for the financing of the construction, operation, and maintenance of the El Cortí wind farm (and associated transmission facilities), located near Bahía Blanca, Argentina. It also advised Enel Chile on a $2bn dual currency term loan facility. Talbert Navia and Los Angeles partner Francisco Flores are both ‘excellent professionals, with extensive knowledge and experience in the clauses of credit agreements, with international commercial banks, development banks and multilateral banks’. Both demonstrate ‘high commitment and dedication during the negotiation process’ and ‘agility in the supply of required answers’. Claude Serfilippi and Allen Miller are also well regarded.

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Capital markets

Within: Capital markets

Winston & Strawn LLP bolstered its standing in Latin America with the hire of an experienced group of Latin America specialists from Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP in 2017. The firm has wide geographic coverage, advising on deals from Mexico to Argentina. Recent mandates include advising Mexican media company TV Azteca on its $400m senior notes offering on the Singapore Stock Exchange, and it also advised Argentina’s YPF on a series of transactions, including a $750m fixed-rate notes offering. The team provides ‘outstanding overall service’ and has ‘outstanding access to the SEC’ thanks to a ‘relationship built on trust and a long track record of reliability’, making it easier for foreign registrants to go through long and complex processes, according to clients, several of which highlight the group’s SEC-registered transactional experience. More generally, the department is ‘really impressive in terms of availability, responsiveness, depth of knowledge and practical advice’ and its ‘partners are completely involved and are always the main contact in all the transactions’. Allen Miller is an ‘outstanding attorney’ who ‘has an excellent sense of balance, with a broad and strategic perspective, but a mind which can also focus on details, if needed’; he is ‘very reliable, intelligent and trustworthy and has outstanding negotiation skills’. Clients also recognise his ability bridge cultural gaps thanks to his understanding of the Latin America market and the characteristics of businesses that are based there. Claude Serfilippi is ‘exceptionally diligent’, provides ‘quick response times’ and is commended for his ability to engage with local counsel to ensure that key steps are understood and executed correctly. Sey-Hyo Lee is ‘an extraordinary advisor’, ‘always understands the whole picture and never misses the important details’; ‘extremely collaborative’, he ensures that ‘everyone understands the key issues and solutions’. Talbert Navia is ‘the best’, ‘a most experienced lawyer’ and ‘a great leader of a team of lawyers’, according to one client. Clients are also impressed with associate Tae Sang Yoo, who has ‘a very promising future’ and is ‘extremely meticulous, reliable and knowledgeable about securities law and complex SEC forms’. All named individuals are New York based unless stated otherwise.

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Corporate and M&A

Within: Corporate and M&A

Winston & Strawn LLP established a strong Latin America M&A practice with the recruitment of an experienced team of Latin America specialists from Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP in 2017; the group was part of Chadbourne & Parke prior to its merger Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP earlier the same year. The new team has given the firm genuine credibility in both M&A and private equity and is praised for its ‘very high levels of service’, its ‘knowledgeable, responsive and loyal’ approach, and its ‘adeptness at working with private equity firms and their needs’. Moreover, its ‘vision for business’ and ‘broad, concrete and professional advice’, continue to impress clients who regard it, in particular, as ‘among the most prominent, well-known and involved firms with Colombian companies’. Recent work saw Latin America practice co-chair Allen Miller and fellow partner Sey-Hyo Lee continue to advise Enel Américas on its corporate reorganisation, involving $22bn of assets in Latin America. Private equity is another strength of the group, which advised Southern Cross Group on its $464m acquisition of gas station, fuel distribution and other related businesses in Chile from Petrobras. Miller’s fellow practice co-chair, Talbert Navia is ‘very experienced, knowledgeable and practical’ and is noted for his private equity experience. Morton Grosz and Kevin Smith are also experienced M&A and private equity specialists.

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United States: Finance

Capital markets: debt offerings

Within: Capital markets: debt offerings

Winston & Strawn LLP continues to invest in strengthening its capital markets team and new arrivals in 2017 include former Locke Lord LLP partners Bryan Goolsby and Kenneth Betts, who joined the firm’s new Dallas office, and a group of international capital markets partners led by Allen Miller and Talbert Navia, who joined in New York from Chadbourne & Parke. Underwriter-side mandates are the mainstay of the practice and Chicago-based key partner Cab Morris acted for the joint book-running managers on a $1bn offering of first mortgage bonds by Commonwealth Edison. An increased profile on the issuer side saw several company-side highlights, including assisting Silgan Holdings with its private offerings of senior unsecured notes totaling $986.9m. New York-based Joel Rubinstein chairs the department. Since publication, Robert Rawn has moved to Jenner & Block LLP.

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United States: M&A/corporate and commercial

M&A: middle-market ($500m-999m)

Within: Leading lawyers

Allen Miller - Winston & Strawn LLP

Within: M&A: middle-market ($500m-999m)

Winston & Strawn LLP grew the New York practice with the hires of Chadbourne & Parke LLP’s former Latin American group chairs Allen Miller - who has extensive experience in power, infrastructure and renewable energy deals - and corporate and investment funds expert Talbert Navia, as well as private equity attorney Kevin Smith and Morton Grosz, who acts for multinational corporate clients and investment funds. Other key hires included public and private company M&A specialist Thomas Hughes in Dallas from Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP, and Jared Manes in New York from Jenner & Block LLP. The practice fields lawyers with deal expertise in highly regulated industries, such as energy and financial services, and its scope of work includes cross-border transactions, take-private transactions, carve-outs, and distressed acquisitions. In New York, Joel Rubinstein advised special purpose acquisition company CF Corporation on its announced acquisition of insurance company Fidelity & Guaranty Life. Matthew Bergmann in Chicago and Washington DC-based Christopher Zochowski lead the M&A practice; Zochowski advised Weinberg Partners on the sale of Northpoint Commercial Finance. The team also includes Chicago-based former corporate practice chair Steven Gavin, whose clients include Groupon, Morningstar and Luxottica, Robert Wall, who acts for corporations, successful entrepreneurs, investment banking firms and special board committees, and James Junewicz, who divides time between Chicago and New York and is a former assistant general counsel of the SEC. Other highly rated Chicago practitioners are former M&A, securities and corporate governance practice chair Oscar David; Gregory Bynan, whose clients include Norwest Equity Partners, Guggenheim Partners and Wynnchurch Capital; Matthew Costigan, who is recommended for M&A, joint ventures and advice to private equity and venture capital funds; Bruce Toth; and Brian Schafer. Richard Wynne is a key Houston contact. Since publication, Robert Rawn has moved to Jenner & Block LLP.

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