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Kirkland & Ellis, Clifford Chance (CC) and Morrison & Foerster (MoFo) are among a line-up of firms advising on the $11.6bn (£8.9bn) takeover of Singapore-based warehouse operator Global Logistic Properties (GLP) by a consortium of Chinese investors.
The consortium – led by Chinese private equity firms Hopu Investment Management and Hillhouse Capital Group, property developer China Vanke, Bank of China Group Investment and GLP chief executive Ming Mei – is set to privatise Singapore Exchange-listed GLP in what will represent one of the largest buyout deals in Asia.
GLP was co-founded in 2007 by Mei and Jeffrey Schwartz and focuses on the e-commerce-fuelled growth of the logistics sector in China. The company manages $41bn in assets in China, Japan, Brazil and the US.
Kirkland is advising the consortium with a Hong Kong-based team led by corporate partner Nicholas Norris, finance partner David Irvine and investment funds partners Justin Dolling and Jonathan Tadd.
Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom is acting for the consortium on regulatory matters regarding Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, antitrust, and securities law as well as Japanese law matters. The team includes London partners John Adebiyi and Danny Tricot, alongside colleagues in Singapore, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Washington DC, Brussels, Los Angeles, Munich, Palo Alto and Paris.
Davis Polk Hong Kong partner Paul Chow and Beijing partner He Li are advising China Vanke, while CC is representing Bank of China Group Investment with a team led by Hong Kong partner Fang Liu, alongside Beijing finance partner Timothy Democratis, Singapore corporate partner Lee Taylor and New York regulatory partner Jeff Berman.
MoFo, a longstanding adviser to GLP, is once again acting for the warehouse company on the privatisation proposal. The US firm’s team is led by Singapore-based Asia managing partner Eric Piesner (pictured) and fellow Singapore partner Shirin Tang, supported by funds partner Kenneth Muller in San Francisco and corporate partner Marcia Ellis in Hong Kong.
Singapore firm Allen & Gledhill is serving as legal adviser to a special committee at GLP.
Hopu and Bank of China first bought into GLP in 2014 when they jointly took a minority stake through GLP’s Chinese subsidiary. MoFo’s Piesner and Ellis both advised GLP on that deal. The pair, alongside Muller, also represented the company on setting up a $7bn China-focused fund in 2015.
GLP started a strategic review in November at the request of shareholder GIC, the Singaporean sovereign wealth fund, and in January began reaching out to potential bidders. The winning consortium trumped a group led by Warburg Pincus and its logistics subsidiary e-Shang Redwood Group.
The deal, which has already obtained approval from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the US, is expected to complete in April 2018.
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