|Allen & Gledhill has advised DBS Bank Ltd and The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Ltd as the arrangers; DBS Bank Ltd, DNB Bank ASA Singapore Branch and The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Ltd as dealers; DBS Bank Ltd as the issuing and paying agent, the agent bank and the paying agent; and DBS Trustee Ltd as the trustee of the holders of the notes, in respect of Odfjell Asia II Pte Ltd’s establishment of a S$500 million (US$409.6m) guaranteed multicurrency medium term note programme unconditionally and irrevocably guaranteed by Odfjell SE under which Odfjell Asia may issue notes from time to time. Partners Margaret Chin, Sunit Chhabra and Ong Kangxin led the transaction.
Allens has advised the sponsors, led by INPEX Corporation and Total, in respect of the US$20 billion project financing for the US$34 billion Ichthys Project. Located in Darwin, the Ichthys Project is a world-class LNG project and one of the largest projects being undertaken in Australia. The 8.4 million tonnes per year venture, operated and majority owned by INPEX, got the go-ahead for construction from its owners in January 2012 and is due to start LNG shipments to Japan and Taiwan in late 2016. Partners Tim Lester and Stephen Spargo led the transaction whilst Allen & Overy acted as global counsel. Latham & Watkins acted as global counsel to lenders whilst Herbert Smith Freehills acted as Australian local finance counsel.
Allens has also advised Perth-based Tangiers Petroleum in respect of a transaction that saw the ASX-listed exploration company farm out a 50 percent interest in eight exploration permits in offshore Morocco. Portuguese energy company Galp Energia will provide up to A$41 million (US43m) funding for exploration activities and will assume the role of operator to earn an interest in the eight exploration permits. Partner Anthony Patten led the transaction whilst Linklaters assisted in providing and arranging local law advice.
Allens and Linklaters have advised a wholly-owned subsidiary of major electricity grid operator State Grid Corporation of China in respect of its acquisition of a 41.11 percent interest in South Australian electricity transmission business, ElectraNet Pty Ltd, from the Queensland Government-owned Powerlink. The deal marks the first significant investment in an Australian utility by a Chinese entity. Linklaters partners Judie Ng Shortell and Thomas Ng and Allens partners Grant Anderson and Wendy Rae led the combined team that advised on a number of aspects of the acquisition, including negotiation of the transaction documents, due diligence, obtaining FIRB approval and Hong Kong corporate law issues.
Amarchand & Mangaldas & Suresh A Shroff Co has advised RRB Group Private Co Ltd (RRB), a Thailand-based hospitality company which operates luxury hotels in Thailand and New Zealand under the brand name ‘lebua’, in respect of entering into three separate hotel management agreements with Boutique Hotels India Private Ltd for managing and operating three luxury hotels in India, namely Devi Garh at Udaipur and Devi Ratn and Rasa at Jaipur. The transaction also involved execution of trademark license agreements pursuant to which lebua Hotels & Resorts Co Ltd will license use of the ‘lebua’ brand name and associated trademarks to Boutique Hotels India Private Ltd for use in relation to the hotels; and marketing service agreements pursuant to which RRB will provide marketing and advisory services to Boutique Hotels India Private Ltd in relation to the three hotels. The definitive agreements were executed on 21 December 2012. The handover of management and operation of the three hotels is expected to take place by January-February 2013. Partner Akila Agrawal led the transaction. AZB and Partners advised Boutique Hotels India Private Ltd.
AZB & Partners has advised Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) in respect of providing a buyer’s credit facility amounting to about ¥3.3 billion (US$37.9m) as its portion for GAIL (India) Ltd. This loan is co-financed with The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ Ltd (BTMU), with Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (NEXI) providing buyer’s credit insurance for the portion co-financed by BTMU. The overall co-financing amount is about ¥5.4 billion (US$62m). The loan will finance GAIL for procurement of plant-related equipment from Japanese companies in order for GAIL to increase the capacities of its petrochemical plants. Partner Ashwin Ramanathan led the transaction.
AZB & Partners has also advised Deutsche Bank AG Hong Kong Branch as dealer manager in respect of 3i Infotech Ltd’s US$126 million offering of 5 percent convertible bonds due 2017 which are convertible into ordinary shares. The offering was part of the restructuring of two series of foreign currency convertible bonds issued by 3i Infotech Ltd in 2007 for an aggregate principal amount of US$100 million and €30 million (US$39.5m), respectively. Partner Varoon Chandra led the transaction.
Baker & McKenzie has advised Mizuho Corporate Bank Ltd, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ Ltd and Deutsche Bank AG Tokyo Branch as the mandated lead arrangers in respect of their ¥1.65 trillion (US$18.94b) loan facility for SOFTBANK CORP. With these loan proceeds, SOFTBANK plans to invest approximately US$20.1 billion for the acquisition of Sprint Nextel Corporation. The acquisition is scheduled to be completed in mid-2013 and gives SOFTBANK a platform to establish an operating base as one of the largest mobile internet companies in the world. It will also provide Sprint with new capital for its mobile network and will enhance its competitiveness in the US. Partners Gavin Raftery and Shinichiro Kitamura led the transaction.
Baker & McKenzie.Wong & Leow, Baker & McKenzie International’s member firm in Singapore, has advised the Park Hotel Group (PHG) in respect of a hotel management agreement with CEL-Alexandra Pte Ltd, the property and development arm of Singapore-listed construction and property group Chip Eng Seng Corporation Ltd. PHG is a Singapore-based hospitality group that manages, owns and develops Park branded hotels around the Asia-Pacific. The new Park Hotel will be located on the Alexandra Road. Partner Kelvin Poa led the transaction.
Clifford Chance has advised China Longyuan Power Group Corporation Ltd in respect of its H share placement of 572.1 million new H Shares raising approximately US$375 million. China Longyuan is a leading wind power generation company in the PRC. It ranks first in the PRC and Asia Pacific in terms of total installed wind power capacity. UBS AG Hong Kong Branch and Morgan Stanley & Co International Plc acted as placing agents. Partner Tim Wang led the transaction.
Clifford Chance has also advised Mitsui & Co Ltd and Mitsui Sugar Co Ltd in respect of its investment in Thailand’s Khonburi Sugar Public Company Ltd, a sugar manufacturer and distributer listed on the Stock Exchange of Thailand. The investment, which remains conditional on shareholder approval (expected to take place in February 2013) will see Mitsui and Mitsui Sugar acquiring an aggregate 16.7 percent holding in Khonburi. Further to the agreement, Mitsui and Mitsui Sugar have also entered into a strategic alliance with Khonburi to expand the scale of Khonburi’s operations and grow its overseas business. Partner Andrew Whan led the transaction.
Conyers Dill & Pearman has advised the consortium of Alfa Group, Access Industries and Renova (AAR) in respect of the sale to Rosneft of its 50 percent stake in TNK-BP, its joint venture with BP. TNK-BP is Russia’s third-largest oil producer. AAR signed a sale and purchase agreement with Rosneft on 12 December 2012. Completion of the transaction is expected in the first half of 2013 following approval by Russian and EU competition authorities. The firm, which worked alongside Skadden, Weil, Gotshal & Manges and White & Case on the transaction, also advised AAR in relation to BP’s separately negotiated sale to Rosneft of its 50 percent stake in TNK-BP. The acquisition of TNK-BP by Rosneft will result in it becoming one of the world’s largest oil producers, matching the output of Exxon. Partner Robert Briant led the transaction.
Davis Polk & Wardwell is advising DLF Global Hospitality Ltd in respect of its sale of Silverlink Resorts Ltd, the holding company for Amanresorts. Under the terms of the definitive agreement, Amanresorts founder and chairman Adrian Zecha will purchase the entire shareholding in Silverlink Resorts Ltd. The enterprise value of the transaction is approximately US$300 million, excluding the Aman property in New Delhi, India. The transaction is expected to close by the end of February 2013, subject to customary closing conditions. Amanresorts is a luxury hotel group which currently owns and manages approximately 25 luxury hotels and resorts across the world. DLF Global is a subsidiary of DLF Ltd, the largest commercial real estate developer in India by sales. Partners Mark Lehmkuhler and Kirtee Kapoor led the transaction.
Davis Polk & Wardwell has also advised the People’s Insurance Company (Group) of China Ltd (PICC), a leading large-scale integrated insurance financial group in China, in respect of its cornerstone investment in the US$477 million IPO of the China Machinery Engineering Corporation on the HKSE. PICC has agreed to invest US$50 million in the H shares of China Machinery, whose H shares were listed in Hong Kong on 21 December 2012. Partner Antony Dapiran led the transaction. King & Wood Mallesons, led by partner Larry Kwok, advised China Machinery.
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer is advising the Hong Leong Company (Malaysia) in respect of its offer for Guoco Group Ltd. The cash offer is valued at approximately HK$8.25 billion (US$1.06b), making it the second largest privatisation of an HKSE-listed company since 2000. The Hong Leong Group is a Malaysian company engaged in financial services, manufacturing and distribution, property development and investment, and hospitality and leisure. Guoco Group Ltd is engaged in principal investment, property development and investment, hospitality and leisure and financial services. Partner Robert Ashworth led the transaction.
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer is also advising GCS Capital, a Hong Kong-based global strategic investment firm, in respect of its acquisition of Dexia Asset Management from Dexia SA, a Brussels-based banking group, for approximately €380 million (US$500.5m). On 4 December 2012, the companies announced they had entered into exclusive negotiations and a share purchase agreement was signed on 12 December 2012. The transaction is expected to close in 2013, subject to legal and regulatory approvals. Partner Vincent Macq led the transaction.
Gide Loyrette Nouel has advised the joint lead managers, composed of Coöperatieve Centrale Raiffeisen-Boerenleenbank BA (Rabobank International), Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank, HSBC Bank plc, ING Bank NV London Branch, Natixis and The Royal Bank of Scotland plc, in respect of Air France-KLM’s issue of €500 million (US$658.6m) 6.25 percent notes due 2018 unconditionally and irrevocably guaranteed by Société Air France and KLM. Settlement and delivery of, as well as admission to trading of the notes on the regulated market of NYSE Euronext in Paris, took place on 14 December 2012. Partner Hubert du Vignaux led the transaction. Air France-KLM, Société Air France and KLM were advised by Linklaters.
Herbert Smith Freehills has advised Stelux Holdings International Ltd, one of the largest mid-end watch and optical retailers in Asia, in respect of the strategic investment and subscription of convertible bonds in an aggregate principal amount of approximately HK$371 million (US$47.7m) by Boyu Capital. Stelux intends to use the proceeds for further expansion of its retail store networks, promotion of in-house brands and potential business expansion. HKSE-listed Stelux is principally engaged in the retailing, trading and wholesale of watches and optical products through its “CITY CHAIN” and “OPTICAL 88” retail chain stores which have over 600 outlets. Boyu is a leading China-focused private investment firm with more than US$1 billion under management. Partners Jason Sung and Austin Sweeney led the transaction.
Hogan Lovells has advised SIM Technology Group Ltd in respect of its one for two rights issue to raise US$22 million. The rights issue is fully underwritten by Toman Investments Ltd, a company controlled by the controlling shareholders of SIM Technology. The controlling shareholders owned 45.5 percent of the issued share capital of SIM Technology before completion of the rights issue. Upon completion of the rights issue, the controlling shareholders own approximately 46.2 percent of the enlarged issued share capital. A whitewash waiver of the obligation of the controlling shareholders to make a mandatory general offer was approved by the independent shareholders and was granted by the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong on 19 November 2012. SIM Technology is the first Hong Kong listed company with depositary receipts listed on the Taiwan Stock Exchange that underwent a rights issue. Partner Terence Lau led the transaction.
Hogan Lovells has also advised the underwriters, including Morgan Stanley Asia Ltd, Citigroup Global Markets Asia Ltd, Standard Chartered Securities (Hong Kong) Ltd, BOCOM International Securities Ltd, First Shanghai Securities Ltd and CCB International Capital Ltd, in respect of the Hong Kong IPO and Rule 144A placing of PRC real estate developer CIFI Holdings (Group) Co Ltd. The IPO raised approximately US$214 million. CIFI was listed on the HKSE on 23 November 2012. Founded in 2000, CIFI is a Shanghai-based company with a total of 43 property projects in 11 mainland cities across the Yangtze River Delta Region, the Bohai Economic Rim and the Central Western Region. Partners Terence Lau and Man Chiu Lee led the transaction.
J Sagar Associates has advised Info Edge (India) Ltd in respect of an investment of approximately INR50 million (US$919,794.00) in Happily Unmarried Marketing Private Ltd, a company operating the web portal www.happilyunmarried.com and engaged in designing and developing fun and quirky products and selling such products under its brand name. The investment is for a 25 percent stake on a fully-diluted and as-converted basis and has been made through optionally convertible cumulative redeemable preference shares. Proceeds will be used to expand its online business through its website. Listed on the BSE, Info Edge runs popular web portals recruitment site Naukri.com and real estate site 99Acres.com. Partner Rohitashwa Prasad led the transaction.
J Sagar Associates has also advised Info Edge (India) Ltd in respect of its acquisition of Toostep Consultancy Private Ltd, a company that has developed a SaaS (software as a service) platform which enables recruiters to propagate jobs in social networking sites and search engines and manage all the responses as well. With this acquisition, Info Edge plans to integrate these features into Naukri.com over a period of time. The team of Toostep has also joined Info Edge. Partner Rohitashwa Prasad also led the transaction.
Khaitan & Co has advised BTMC Bidco Ltd, which is backed by ICG Group, in respect of the Indian leg of the transaction in relation to new private equity partnership to complete a tertiary management buy-out of ATPI Cayman Ltd UK from Equistone Partners Europe. Founded in 1989, ICG is a specialist investment firm and asset manager providing mezzanine finance, leveraged credit and partnership equity, managing over €11 billion (US$14.5b) assets in proprietary capital and third party funds. Partner Rabindra Jhunjhunwala advised client on the transaction.
Khaitan & Co has also advised Calcom Cement India Ltd, Bawri Group and Dalmia Cement (Bharat) Ltd in respect of further acquisition by Dalmia Cement (Bharat) Ltd of 26 percent stake of Calcom held by Bawri Group for a total consideration of US$14.15 million. Partners Haigreve Khaitan and Aakash Choubey led the transaction with assistance from executive director Daksha Baxi.
Ogier acted as BVI legal adviser to luxury international jeweller Graff Diamonds in respect of a US$450 million refinancing loan from a consortium of banks consisting of Standard Chartered, Barclays and the Royal Bank of Scotland. Partner Nathan Powell led the transaction. The firm worked alongside Linklaters and Graff’s general counsel Alex Molla. Hogan Lovells acted for the banks.
Paul Hastings is representing CLSA Capital Partners, the alternative asset management arm of Asia’s leading independent brokerage and investment group CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets, in respect of its sale of Everlife Co Ltd, a Japanese direct marketing company of health supplement products, to Korean public company LG Household & Healthcare. This cross-border stock purchase transaction is valued at US$310 million and the deal is expected to close late January 2013. Partners Hajime Kanagawa and Ted Johnson are leading the transaction.
Paul Hastings has also represented Ayala Corporation, one of the Philippines’ largest conglomerates, in respect of its execution of a definitive agreement to acquire approximately 17.1 percent ownership interest in GNPower Mariveles Coal Plant Ltd Co and its 2 x 300 MW coal-fired generating plant in Bataan province, Philippines. The acquisition is priced at approximately US$155 million and the closing of the acquisition is subject to the lender’s consent and other customary closing conditions. The interests are currently held by an affiliate of a fund managed by Denham Capital. Ayala has a growing portfolio of energy projects and is looking to invest up to US$1 billion over the next five years in the transport infrastructure and power generation sectors in the Philippines. Partners Patricia Tan Openshaw and Derek Roth led the transaction.
Rajah & Tann has advised Doreen Koh Ching Kim and Low See Ching in respect of their sale of 100 percent of the issued share capital of TFS Singapore Private Ltd to The Face Shop Co Ltd, a member of LG Household & Health Care Ltd, for a cash consideration of S$19.5 million (US$16m). TFS Singapore Private Ltd is the franchisee of the brands “TheFaceShop” and “belif” in Singapore and manages approximately 20 stores in Singapore. Partners Goh Kian Hwee, Cynthia Goh, Soh Chai Lih, Lim Mei Ann and Rajesh Sreenivasan acted on the transaction which was announced on 17 December 2012 and is yet to be completed. Kim & Chang acted as Korean lawyers whilst WongPartnership acted as Singapore lawyers to The Face Shop Co Ltd.
Rajah & Tann has also advised EDB Investments Pte Ltd in respect of its S$19 million (US$15.57m) subscription for shares in SGX-ST listed Ezion Holdings Ltd. The Ezion group specializes in the development, ownership and chartering of strategic offshore assets and the provision of offshore marine logistics and support services to the offshore oil and gas industries. Partners Chia Kim Huat and Danny Lim led the transaction which was announced on 18 December 2012 and is yet to be completed. Stamford Law advised Ezion Holdings Ltd.
Shearman & Sterling has represented the sole sponsor BOCI Asia Ltd and the underwriters, composed of BOCI Asia Ltd, ICBC International Capital Ltd, ICBC International Securities Ltd, CIMB Securities Ltd and ABCI Securities Company Ltd, in respect of the approximately HK$3.88 billion (US$436m) primary listing on the HKSE and global offering of the H shares of PRC-incorporated leading international engineering contractor and service provider China Machinery Engineering Corporation (CMEC). CMEC’s public offering is, as year-to-date, the most over-subscribed in 2012, with its H shares being over-subscribed for 57.93 times. An over-allotment option has been granted to the international underwriters. The company plans to use a majority of the IPO proceeds to finance its international engineering contracting projects in the power and transportation sectors. Partners Colin Law and Alan Seem led the transaction.
Shearman & Sterling has also represented Concord Medical Services Holdings Ltd in respect of the acquisition of an indirect interest of 19.98 percent in The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center Proton Therapy Center. Upon completion of the acquisition, Concord Medical is now the second largest owner of the MD Anderson Proton Therapy Center, behind MD Anderson Cancer Center. NYSE-listed Concord Medical is a leading specialty hospital management solution provider and operator of the largest network of radiotherapy and diagnostic imaging centers in China. Partners Shuang Zhao and Lorna Chen led the transaction.
Shook Lin & Bok has acted for NYSE-listed Pulse Electronics Corporation and its Singapore subsidiaries in respect of the recapitalisation investment of approximately US$102.7 million in the Pulse group of companies by certain affiliates of investment funds managed by private investment firm Oaktree Capital Management LP. Pulse received US$75 million in cash under a new Term Loan A and issued to Oaktree shares of Pulse’s common stock and a warrant to purchase shares of a subsidiary that will terminate upon issuance of shares of a new class of Pulse non-voting preferred stock. Additionally, Oaktree exchanged approximately US$27.7 million of the company’s US$50 million in outstanding 7 percent senior convertible notes due in 2014 for a new Term Loan B. Partners Stanley Lim and Teo Yi Jing led the transaction.
Simpson Thacher is representing Xiabuxiabu Catering Management (China) Holdings Co Ltd (Xiabu Xiabu) in respect of the sale of Xiabu Xiabu shares by Actis to General Atlantic. Xiabu Xiabu is the largest individual, bar-style hotpot restaurant chain in China with more than 300 restaurants in a number of cities. Chris Lin, Liang Wang and Duan Fu led the transaction.
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom is representing Jason Nanchun Jiang, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Focus Media Holding Ltd, in respect of Focus Media’s definitive agreement and plan of merger with Giovanna Parent Ltd and Giovanna Acquisition Ltd, pursuant to which Parent will acquire Focus Media. The deal values Focus Media’s equity at approximately US$3.7 billion, on a fully diluted basis. The transaction will be financed in part by US$1.525 billion in committed debt financing. Immediately after the completion of the transaction, Parent will be beneficially owned by Jiang; affiliates of and funds managed by Giovanna Investment Holdings Ltd; Gio2 Holdings Ltd; Power Star Holdings Ltd; State Success Ltd; and Fosun International Ltd and/or its affiliates. The company’s Board of Directors, acting upon the unanimous recommendation of an independent committee of the Board of Directors, approved the merger agreement and the transaction and resolved to recommend that the company’s shareholders vote to authorise and approve the merger agreement and the transaction. The transaction, which is currently expected to close during the second quarter of 2013, is subject to various closing conditions, including a condition that the merger agreement be authorised and approved by an affirmative vote of shareholders. The transaction is currently expected to close during the second quarter of 2013. If completed, this will be the largest ever leveraged buyout of a Chinese company. Partners Peter Huang and Michael Gisser led the transaction. Sullivan & Cromwell, led by partners Michael DeSombre, William Chua and Presley Warner, acted as lead counsel to the private equity sponsors on the financing. Kirkland & Ellis, led by partners David Zhang, Jesse Sheley and Stephanie Tang, is serving as US legal advisor to the independent committee whilst Maples and Calder and Fangda Partners are serving as Cayman Islands and PRC legal advisor, respectively. Simpson Thacher & Bartlett is serving as US legal advisor to the company. Shearman & Sterling is serving as US legal advisor to JP Morgan Securities (Asia Pacific) Ltd. Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson is serving as US legal advisors to the sponsors, Sullivan & Cromwell is advising on English law matters and Conyers Dill & Pearman and ZhongLun Law Firm are serving as Cayman Islands and PRC legal advisor to the sponsors, respectively. Clifford Chance is serving as US and English law legal advisor to the underwriters, book-runners and mandated lead arrangers of the debt financing whilst Walkers and Fangda Partners are serving as Cayman Islands legal advisor and PRC legal advisor, respectively. Weil, Gotshal & Manges, led by partner Akiko Mikumo, is acting as lead counsel to Citi and Credit Suisse as the financial advisors to the consortium. Davis Polk, led by partner Mark J Lehmkuhler, is advising CITIC Capital.
Stamford Law is representing FDS Networks Group Ltd in respect of its proposed acquisition of the entire issued and paid-up share capital of Delta Advanced Materials Ltd, an investment holding company incorporated in Hong Kong, for an aggregate consideration of up to a maximum of S$165 million (US$135.2m) to be satisfied in full by the issuance of new ordinary shares in the capital of the company. The proposed acquisition, if undertaken and completed, will result in a reverse take-over of the company as defined under Chapter 10 of the SGX-ST Listing Manual.
Sullivan & Cromwell has represented China Vanadium Titano-Magnetite Mining Company Ltd in respect of the proposed US$266 million buyback offer made by its parent, Keen Talent Holdings Ltd, announced on 21 December 2012. Partners Kay Ian Ng and Gwen Wong led the transaction.
Watson, Farley & Williams’ Singapore office has advised the lenders in respect of the US$356 million refinancing extended to Korea Gas Corporation (KOGAS) for three 2000 built LNG carriers, each of which are on bareboat charter to Hanjin Shipping Co Ltd, SK Shipping Co Ltd and Hyundai Merchant Marine Co Ltd. All three LNG carriers are operating under long term contracts of affreightment with KOGAS. The lead arrangers were Banc of America Leasing & Capital LLC, Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd, CréditIndustriel et Commercial Singapore Branch and The Bank of Nova Scotia Asia Ltd. Bank of America NA led the syndicate as agent and security trustee and boo-krunner. Partner Goh Mei Lin led the transaction.
Watson, Farley & Williams’ Singapore office has also advised NellanApS (Nellan) in respect of the acquisition of a Singapore-incorporated subsidiary of Nordic Tankers A/S. Nellan is a Danish-incorporated company controlled by private equity firm Triton. The acquisition is part of Triton’s purchase of Nordic Tankers’ entire chemical tanker business, which comprises a fleet of nine owned vessels, six chartered vessels and approximately 70 vessels under commercial and pool management, together with the full contract portfolio and approximately 140 employees, for a purchase price of US$30 million. Partner Peter Chean led the transaction.
Weil, Gotshal & Manges has acted as lead counsel for CCT Group, a global provider of dedicated, shared and hybrid contact center outsourcing solutions, and their majority owner, Headland Capital Partners Group, in respect of its acquisition by iQor, a global provider of intelligent customer interaction and outsourcing solutions. iQor is acquiring CCT free of its existing debt with the support of iQor’s equity owners, Huntsman Gay, CVCI and Starr Principal Holdings. The acquisition is part of iQor’s plan to apply its technology-enabled solutions and deep analytics capabilities to a broader platform. The acquisition also bolsters iQor’s technology offerings while expanding its global footprint in Latin America and the Philippines, allowing clients to take advantage of a broader set of skills and labour markets across the world. Partner Peter Feist led the transaction.
Weil, Gotshal & Manges has acted as lead counsel to AutoTrader Group, a portfolio company owned by Cox Enterprises and Providence Equity Partners, in respect of its recent investment in NYSE-listed Bitauto Holdings Ltd, a leading provider of internet content and marketing services for China’s automotive industry. AutoTrader Group, the operator of the largest digital automotive marketplace in the United States, has agreed to purchase 9 million ordinary shares representing approximately 21.8 percent stake in the company from the selling shareholders for US$58.5 million in a private transaction. Concurrently, Bitauto’s senior management team, namely chairman and CEO William Bin Li, president Jingning Shao, CFO Andy Xuan Zhang, and senior vice-president Weihai Qu, also entered into definitive agreements with a pre-IPO shareholder of the company to purchase approximately 2.4 percent stake in the company from the selling shareholder for US$6.5 million. Partner Anthony Wang led the transaction.
Wong & Partners, the Malaysian member firm of Baker & McKenzie International, has advised American International Assurance Company Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of AIA Group Ltd (AIA), in respect of the US$1.8 billion acquisition of ING Groep NV’s Malaysian insurance and Takaful business. The purchase includes ING’s life-insurance and employee-benefits businesses in Malaysia and a 60 percent stake in ING Public Takaful Ehsan Berhad, a Takaful business. The acquisition will combine ING’s Malaysian operations and AIA’s existing Malaysian business, currently the third and the fourth largest in Malaysia, respectively, to create the largest life insurer in the country. AIA’s market share will double to 25 percent in Malaysia, one of Southeast Asia’s most attractive and fastest growing life assurance markets. Partner Brian Chia led the transaction. Debevoise & Plimpton of Hong Kong acted as international counsel for AIA whilst Wong & Partners acted as local counsel. Allen & Overy acted as international counsel for ING Groep NV whilst Skrine acted as local counsel.
WongPartnership has acted for SGX-listed STX OSV Holdings Ltd and STX Europe AS in respect of the pre-conditional mandatory cash offer by Credit Suisse (Singapore) Ltd and Nomura Singapore Ltd, for and on behalf of Fincantieri Oil & Gas SpA, a direct wholly-owned subsidiary of Fincantieri–Cantieri Navali Italiani SpA, for all the issued ordinary shares in the capital of the STX OSV, pursuant to a sale by STX Europe AS to the offeror of shares representing approximately 50.75 percent of shares in STX OSV. Partners Mark Choy, Kenneth Leong and Dawn Law led the transaction.
WongPartnership has also acted for Mapletree Commerical Trust in respect of the S$680 million (US$557m) acquisition of Mapletree Anson, a 19-storey premium office building with Grade-A building specifications located in Tanjong Pagar, a micro-market of the central business district of Singapore. Partners Rachel Eng, Long Chee Shan, James Choo and Carol Anne Tan led the transaction.