Amidst the global COVID-19 pandemic, Baker McKenzie, leading global law firm, successfully negotiated Empresas Públicas de Medellín’s (EPM) acquisition of Electricaribe in April of this year. This monumental deal has been the largest energy sector transaction of the year. The Firm's success in facilitating this complex transaction relied on multiple practice groups including the leading M&A team, with the support of the labor and competition groups.

Baker McKenzie's work, which lasted about eight months, faced numerous challenges due to the public auction for the liquidation of company shares, conducted by the Colombian government. According to Andrés Crump, leader of Baker McKenzie's M&A Practice Area, "the complex situation of Electricaribe, the decision of the National Government to divide Electricaribe's assets into two companies, as well as the inherent challenge in participating in an auction, made it a particularly complex process".

This deal has been one of the most important initiatives for EPM, as it has allowed the company to reach a total of 1.5 million new users, expanding its services to a total population of 19 million people, as well as increasing its share of the national energy market to 35 percent. Closing is still subject to satisfaction of various conditions precedent.

Despite the challenges presented during the COVID-19 pandemic, the quality and professionalism of the teams involved were key in this monumental achievement. "The depth of Baker McKenzie’s M&A practice, both in Colombia and regionally, all contributed to the project’s success. As a Firm, we were committed to supporting EPM through this transaction and securing what was best for them as a client. Overall, we’re extremely content with the result of the deal and are optimistic about facilitating other large-scale M&A deals in the future," added Crump.

This deal represents a major win for Baker McKenzie Latin America’s M&A practice group, while also demonstrating the depth of knowledge and expertise on a national and regional level. Baker McKenzie has also been instrumental in the recent historic sale of Colombian electric company Empresa de Energía de Boyacá deal.
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