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Finance and Projects

Our finance and projects lawyers advise on all aspects of financing, across borders, sectors and financial products. 

We share knowledge and skills in deals involving, for example, lending and borrowing, debt securities, derivatives, funds, portfolios and fintech solutions, as well as energy, infrastructure, transport matters and other projects. 

With an established presence in Africa through DLA Piper Africa, we help our clients to realize and develop their financial strategies and projects in whichever markets they do business.

Our lawyers have experience advising in regards to asset based lending and receivables financing. 

We advise banks, finance houses, sponsors and corporates globally on a range of finance transactions, including asset-based lending, receivables financing, supply chain finance, consignment and title finance, distribution and transit finance and non-recourse structures, among others.

Key contacts

Our lawyers have experience in advising on a wide variety of asset and structured finance projects including the procurement, financing and leasing of aircraft, ships, heavy and light rolling stock, rail infrastructure, film productions and tax-based leasing. 

Our client base includes banks and arrangers, major airlines, ship owners and operators, train operating companies, and lessors and manufacturers of a variety of assets.

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Our debt capital markets lawyers advise on complex, innovative and high-profile transactions. 

We advise issuers, underwriters, selling shareholders, sponsors, arrangers, lead managers, originators, dealers, trustees and depositaries on a broad range of capital markets offerings, including equity, equity-linked and debt securities, structured and project financings and securitizations.

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Our lawyers regularly advise senior lenders, mezzanine lenders, equity investors, investment funds and companies on all aspects of syndicated and bilateral debt financing, including all aspects of the financing of public and private company acquisitions, MBOs, MBIs and other institutional buyouts in Africa and beyond.

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Our derivatives lawyers have experience in a wide array of mainstream and specialist derivatives and structured finance products, including stand-alone hedging products and hedging in connection with larger financing transactions. 

We advise the full spectrum of derivatives users, ranging from leading financial institutions to corporates and investment and pensions funds, and have experience acting in a transaction management role or advising compliance in an increasingly challenging regulatory environment.

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Our financial services regulatory lawyers advise financial institutions of all sizes as well as national and international companies that offer financial products. 

We advise clients on a wide-range of issues, from regulatory issues affecting the viability of the institution, permissibility of activities and investments, to anti-money laundering compliance, restructuring of boards and senior executive responsibilities, examination criticisms and regulatory investigations and enforcement actions, among others.

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Our structured finance and securitization lawyers deliver integrated advice and support across a range of transactions in Africa and beyond. 

We have substantial experience in a wide array of ABS as well as securitization of esoteric assets such as renewable energy and energy efficiency assets, tobacco fees, small business loans, ships, IP and aircraft, and whole business securitizations and project finance securitizations.

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Our structured trade and commodity finance lawyers combine a comprehensive knowledge of the law with a pragmatic approach to the commercial realities of structured trade finance. 

We are adept at structuring transactions to mitigate risk in challenging markets, whatever commodities or technologies are involved, and are experienced in providing tailored financing solutions and cutting-edge security packages designed for our clients’ specific commercial needs.

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Our lawyers have experience in the infrastructure market and act for both sponsors and lenders in a wide range of limited recourse financing transactions. 

We have broad experience of PPP transactions and thorough knowledge of several market sectors, including power (thermal and renewable), transport (roads, airports and shipping), oil, gas, commodities and water.

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Our lawyers advise on the purchase and sale of existing power assets, as well as on the siting, development, permitting and financing of power projects, both thermal and renewable. 

We act for governments, sponsors and lenders across a range of matters, from the development, construction and financing of power projects to issues related to transmission and distribution networks.

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Our lawyers have experience regarding PPP, delivering sound and innovative solutions to clients on all aspects of projects, from their procurement and financing, including secondary market acquisitions and subsequent refinancing, through variations and operational issues. 

We advise on every legal aspect from procurement strategy, tax structuring, contractual documentation and risk allocation to finance structuring.

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Our lawyers have experience in the renewable energy market, advising sponsors, developers, financiers and regulatory bodies, among others, on transactions across the spectrum of renewable energy technologies, including hydro, solar, onshore and offshore wind, energy-from-waste, biomass and biofuels. 

We have hands-on, practical experience of delivering each stage of a project, including planning, permitting, joint ventures and other corporate matters, structuring equity investment, developing project documents (such as PPAs, turbine supply agreements, EPC and O&M arrangements), project finance and M&A.

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Our lawyers advise clients in the transportation sector on transactions across many legal disciplines. 

We provide legal services to support clients in industries including aviation, highways, bus, rail, ports and shipping, as well as international trade issues, acting on behalf of funders, consortia, authorities, vehicle suppliers and operators.

Key contacts

Experience has included advising:

  • A Mauritian subsidiary of the Libyan Investment Fund which is itself a subsidiary of the Libyan Sovereign Fund in its restructuring.
  • China Development Bank Corporation as to matters of Mauritian Law in connection with the financing of a wind power project in Pakistan.
  • Agence Française de Developpment in connection with an issue of shares and share exchange involving the African Guarantee Fund Ltd.
  • Tier 1 in Project Development (IFLR1000 2019)

The FSC issues consultation paper on the regulatory framework for Robotic and Artificial Intelligence Enabled Advisory Services

The Financial Services Commission (FSC) has issued a Consultation Paper in relation to the introduction of a regulatory framework for Robotic and Artificial Intelligence Enabled Advisory Services (hereinafter RAIEAS). RAIEAS was coined in the National Budget of 2019/2020 and the Finance (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2020 added RAIEAS as a financial business activity in Schedule 2 of the Financial Services Act requiring a licence from the FSC. The aim of the Consultation Paper, which is inspired from approaches and models implemented by other jurisdictions, is to invite views and comments from relevant professionals, the industry and the public at large.

The FSC issues Peer to Peer (P2P) Lending Rules

P2P lending has, worldwide, been hailed as an innovative solution that democratises financing. Start-ups and small entrepreneurs have typically relied on bank finance to grow. But they present risks that banks are not always prepared to take — at least not cheaply. Online platforms that connect borrowers directly with investors bypass the problem of getting bank financing.

Powers of directors of a company which is placed in administration

The Court of Civil Appeal of the Supreme Court of Mauritius has recently opined in the case of Essar Steel Ltd v Arcelormittal USA LLC [2020 SCJ 191] that the directors of a company, which has been placed in administration retain no residual power to initiate proceedings on behalf of the company.

The FSC issues guidance notes on security token offerings and security token trading systems

The Financial Services Commission (“FSC”), the integrated regulator for non-banking financial services and global business sectors, which is highly supportive of Fintech-related initiatives, issued on 15 June 2020, pursuant to section 7(1)(a) of the Financial Services Act 2007, guidance notes on a common set of standards for Security Token Offerings and the licensing of Security Token Trading Systems.