NEW YORK, October 23, 2012 – In a move showcasing the vitality of South America’s retail sector, Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy has represented Chile’s largest retail company Cencosud S.A. (NYSE: CNCO) in a $2.6 billion financing for the acquisition of all of the Colombian assets of French multinational retailer Carrefour S.A.
Finance partner Eric Moser led the Milbank team on the financing, which was entirely secured through JP Morgan Chase Bank. The deal brings to Cencosud a total of 92 prime shopping outlets in Colombia, including 72 hypermarkets formerly operated by Carrefour, along with a collection of smaller convenience stores and other outlets. The acquisition is expected to close by year’s end.
“This is a significant move by one of South America’s preeminent retailers to acquire a large portfolio of prime assets in a country with a dynamic economy and a growing middle class with strong consumer demand,” Mr. Moser said. “We’re pleased to help Cencosud continue its growth and acquisition strategy within Latin America after its US IPO this past June. That such a large financing is coming from a single commercial lender in JP Morgan Chase is obviously a great testament to Cencosud’s business model and to the potential for continued expansion in Colombia.”
Other Milbank attorneys involved in this transaction included Securities of counsel Frank Vivero and associate Regina Gromen.
Milbank and Cencosud have previously worked together in advancing the retailer’s considerable market presence in the largest economies of South America. In June a Milbank team headed by securities partner Marcelo Mottesi represented Cencosud in its U.S. IPO on the New York Stock Exchange, part of a global offering that raised $1.3 billion – it was the largest initial public offering on record by a Chilean company. Cencosud operates a popular mix of large department stores, home improvement and hardware stores, financial service outlets, and supermarkets primarily in Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Peru, and Colombia.
This latest Cencosud financing continues Milbank’s role helping leading South American companies access global debt and equity markets. Among some of the firm’s notable LatAm representations in 2012:
- International lender group as initial purchasers of a $350 million offering of 6.50% senior notes by Peruvian beverage company Ajecorp B.V.
- Underwriters of three separate debt offerings by Mexican state oil/gas company Pemex totaling $1.2 billion
- Lender group in a $325 million private placement debt offering by Coazucar, Peru’s largest sugar producer
- Lenders in the $250 million sale of 10-year notes by Colombian bank Banco GNB Sudameris;
- Underwriters in $146 million private placement debt offering by Arcos Dorados Holdings, Latin America’s largest fast-food restaurant operator;
- Lender group in a $466 million offering by Chilean construction/investment firm Inversiones La Construccion S.A.
Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP is a leading international law firm providing innovative legal solutions to clients throughout the world for more than 140 years. Milbank is headquartered in New York and has offices in Beijing, Frankfurt, Hong Kong, London, Los Angeles, Munich, São Paulo, Singapore, Tokyo and Washington, DC.
Milbank's Latin America Practice Group is one of the most successful and diverse in the region. The group’s attorneys have advised clients on some of the largest and most innovative transactions across the Americas. Attorneys in the group specialize in securities, M&A, project finance, private placements, litigation & arbitration.