Baker McKenzie advised the banking consortium on financing the acquisition of ista International GmbH, one of the world's leading energy efficiency providers, by a Chinese joint venture, CK Infrastructure Holdings Limited (CKI) and Cheung Kong Property Holdings Limited. The majority of the vendor is held by CVC Capital Partners Fund V, who had purchased the highly profitable heating and water meter specialists in 2013.
The acquisition is financed by a consortium of 13 European and Asian banks.
The transaction is one of the largest takeovers in Germany this year. The closing of the transaction is subject to the usual antitrust and regulatory approvals and is expected for Q4 of 2017.
Baker McKenzie provided extensive legal advice to the banking consortium on financing the acquisition and collateral orders. The ista Group is a company operating in a highly regulated area, which has different infrastructure characteristics. As the company operates in 24 countries, the regulatory requirements of a large number of jurisdictions had to be taken into account in the transaction, which is why acquisition financing is highly complex in such an environment.
"It was an exciting transaction, which involved the acquisition of one of the two market leaders in the area of energy management services in Germany. With our international positioning and our industry specialization and experience in the field of energy and infrastructure, we were in the position to assist the international banking consortium in this successful transaction in this complex and regulatory challenging arena", commented Dr. Tim Heitling, a partner of Baker McKenzie, who lead the team together with Dr. Thomas Dörmer, Kathrin Marchant and Lynn Rosell Rowley.
"This was a challenging transaction. We needed to work quickly to bring together multiple banks to agree a financing package that would optimise CKI's opportunity of securing this strategic investment. This demonstrates how we can combine the expertise of finance, corporate, tax and sector specialist teams in different jurisdictions to ensure that our clients have the advice they need to enable them to execute a transaction on a challenging timetable" said Lynn Rosell Rowley.
ista employs more than 5,400 people and provides energy services for more than twelve million apartments and commercial properties in 24 countries around the world.
The Energy & Infrastructure team of Baker McKenzie regularly advises on national and international transactions, financing and joint ventures. Most recently, it advised Chubu Electric Power Co., Inc. to acquire interests in German offshore network operators, the Bavarian State Bank and the Arab African International Bank as the lender of the USD 126 million project financing for Infinity 50 Renewable Energy S.A.E., ALBA Group, one of the world's leading recycling specialists and suppliers of raw materials, as a Chinese investor joined into two segments of the ALBA Group, RWE and E.ON, on the sale of their holdings in Enovos, the Luxembourg-based energy company.
Lead advisors to Bank Consortium:
Dr. Tim Heitling (M&A/Energy, Berlin, partner)
Dr. Thomas Dörmer (M&A/Energy, Berlin, partner)
Kathrin Marchant (Finance, Frankfurt, partner)
Lynn Rosell Rowley (Finance, London, partner)
M&A / Energy: Dr. Holger Ellers (M&A, Berlin, partner)
Dr. Daniel Neudecker (M&A / Energy, Berlin, senior associate))
Finance: Dr. Oliver Socher (Finance, Frankfurt, partner), Frieso Eilers (Finance, Frankfurt), Marc Fevre (Finance, London, partner), Sudhir Nair (Finance, London, senior associate) ,Max Calvin Jones (Finance, London, associate), Aksa Asad (Finance, London, associate) ,James Clarke (Finance, associate, London), Alexander Rickets (Finance, London), Nicola White (Finance, London), Laurent Fessmann (Finance, Luxembourg, partner), Alexis Bouvet (Finance, Luxembourg, associate), Martin Tam (Finance, Hong Kong, partner)
Frances Okosi (Finance, Johannesburg, partner)
IT: Dr. Holger Lutz (IT, Frankfurt, Partner), Yann Padova (IT, Paris, senior counsel), Elodie Roger (IT, Paris, associate)
Antitrust: Christian Burholt (Berlin, partner), Dr. Christian Horstkotte (Düsseldorf, partner)
Tax: James Smith (Tax, London, partner), Vadim Romanoff (Tax, London, senior associate), Amar Hamouche (Taxes, Luxembourg, partner), Matthew Legg (Tax, London, senior associate)
Capital Markets: Phung Pham (Capital Markets, London, Of counsel), Minjia Zhang (Capital Markets, London, associate)