Milbank Represents Energy Investors Funds in Acquisition of a Majority Interest in Tierra Energy LLC
Private Equity Firm Invests in Texas-Based Developer of Natural Gas-Fired Generation Facilities and Wind Energy Projects
NEW YORK, NY, December 15, 2005 – Further extending its strength in acquisition finance and power & energy into the private equity arena and leveraging its expertise in the renewable energy field, the international law firm Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP, led by partner Eric Silverman, has successfully closed Energy Investors Funds’ acquisition of a majority interest in Tierra Energy LLC. Milbank represented Energy Investors Funds Group in negotiating and structuring the transaction on behalf of its United States Power Fund II, L.P. The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Eric Silverman, head of Milbank’s Global Project Finance Group, noted, “This transaction enabled us to leverage our expertise in power and energy as well as private equity while working closely with Energy Investors Funds to negotiate and structure the terms of its investment in Tierra Energy. We are particularly pleased to represent Energy Investors Funds, having previously worked with the financing parties in connection with transactions relating to its investments in the Neptune Regional Transmission System undersea cable project and the Crockett Cogeneration gas-fired cogeneration facility.”
Energy Investors Funds (EIF) is a private equity fund manager focusing exclusively on the independent power and electric utility industry. With more than $1.75 billion in capital, EIF manages six private equity funds and is one of the world’s leaders in private power projects and companies. EIF’s portfolio of over 65 diversified investments has a combined underlying asset value exceeding $5 billion.
-Tierra Energy is an Austin, Texas-based aggregator of natural gas-fired generation facilities and developer of wind farms. The company was formed in 2005 through a management buyout of Texas American Power. Tierra Energy is pursuing wind projects in Texas, Idaho and the Northeast, and owns and continues to develop a portfolio of natural gas-fired generation facilities.
The Milbank team representing Energy Investors Funds was led by partners Eric Silverman (Global Project Finance), John Franchini (Global Corporate) and Mark Regante (Tax), all in the firm’s New York office.
Milbank’s Global Project Finance Group is one of the largest and most experienced among the world’s major law firms. Renowned for its leadership, Milbank has pioneered some of the most innovative leveraged finance techniques, and consistently ranks among the top law international law firms. The Firm received the “2005 CHAMBERS AWARDS FOR USA PROJECTS” awarded by UK legal publisher Chambers & Partners for USA project financings closed in 2004. In 2005 Milbank closed more than $31 billion of deals, including more than 35 transactions in the power and energy, infrastructure, natural resources and space sectors. With more than 100 dedicated project finance attorneys in the firm’s offices worldwide, Milbank provides legal advice under both U.S. and English law. As the project finance marketplace has evolved, Milbank’s Global Project Finance Team has expanded the range of products and services by working in conjunction with attorneys from other practice areas to encompass restructuring, securities offerings, mergers & acquisitions, development and finance and regulation.
The depth of Milbank’s project finance expertise ranges from power generation, power transmission and distribution, pipelines, oil and gas and petrochemicals, telecommunications and space, waste disposal and recycling, water treatment, mining and natural resources, pulp/paper, transportation, to other types of infrastructure.
Significant recent representations include:
- Credit Suisse in the $1.3 billion recapitalization of Boston Generating LLC, which involved a complex financing package involving a new management team and a consortium of hedge funds.
- The sellers, a creditor group that included financial institutions and hedge funds, in the $580 million sale of La Paloma Generating Company, LLC to Complete Energy Holdings, LLC. The deal is one of the largest cash sales of a power generating asset owned by a creditor group.
- The institutional investors and bank lenders in the $602 million financing of the Neptune RTSTM Project to construct a 65 mile undersea transmission line connecting New Jersey interconnection site with LIPA’s grid in Long Island.
- The lenders in the $278 million financing for the Cheyenne Plains Gas Pipeline Project, the largest gas pipeline non-recourse financing in the United States in recent years.
- KGen LLC in its $475 million refinancing, a complex transaction completed within a tight transaction timetable and involving a number of counterparties and Duke Energy as the holder of seller financing.
- The lenders in the $822 million financing for Cheniere Energy’s Sabine Pass LNG project, the largest LNG financing ever in the United States.
- The project sponsors and equity investors Mitsubishi Corporation and Marubeni Corporation of Japan in the $910 million financing for Petrobras’ PDET oil project in the Campos Basin off Brazil.
- Hamma Water Desalination Company in the landmark financing of the largest desalination plant in Africa and the first PPP in Algeria.
- The lenders on the S$525 million financing for Keppel Merlimau, the first project financing of a green-field power plant in Singapore’s recently established electricity market.
- Various parties in numerous Wind Power Projects including Padoma Wind Power, Sea West, Kumeyaay, Caprock, Top Deer, Kaheawa, Sweetwater II, Sweetwater III, Bear Creek, ACUA, Buffalo Gap and Shiloh.
- The lenders in a non-recourse $500 million financing for Brascan Corporation of Canada to refinance portions of its $874 million purchase of power generating stations from Reliant Energy, Inc.
Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP is a global law firm headquartered in New York, with offices in Washington, DC, Los Angeles, Palo Alto, London, Frankfurt, Munich, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Singapore. Named Legal Week’s “INTERNATIONAL FIRM OF THE YEAR” for 2004, Milbank is a recognized leader in mergers and acquisitions, capital markets and corporate finance, project finance, acquisition finance and other major fields of legal practice. Milbank has English, German and U.S. law capabilities, and provides a full range of services to many of the world’s leading financial, industrial and commercial enterprises, as well as governments, institutions and individuals.