Walkers Wins Four Finance Dublin Deals of the Year Awards 2020

Walkers is delighted to announce that together with a number of clients, it has won four Finance Dublin Deals of the Year Awards and that it has been shortlisted for an addition four Deal Awards. The annual Awards acknowledge excellence under six broad categories within the financial services sector in Ireland and these categories include: M&A; Debt Capital Markets; Equity Capital Markets; Loans & Financing; Financial Services and; FS Aviation Finance. The 2020 Awards have recognised the most innovative and complex deals across the capital markets. We set out below details of some of our winning and shortlisted awards, in addition to commentary from each of the lead partners.

Winning Deals:

  1. Debt Capital Markets: Synthetic CMBS - Syntotta 1 - Synthetic Portuguese CMBS (€181 million)

"We were delighted to partner with Santander, one of the most prolific and innovative issuers in the market taking full advantage of the utility of synthetic products for risk mitigation, risk sharing and private debt mobilisation, on this innovative and complex SRT which was governed by Irish law - a growing trend that we have seen over the last 12 - 18 months for numerous reasons."

Andrew Traynor, Partner, Finance & Capital Markets.

The team involved included: Andrew Traynor, Ian McNamee and Charlotte Chestnutt from the Finance and Capital Markets Group; Jonathan Sheehan, Eimear Burbridge and Niamh Pender from the Tax Group and; Therese Redmond and Ken Foley from Listings.


  1. Debt Capital Markets: Synthetic RMBS – Syon Securities 2019 – Synthetic UK RMBS (€164 million)

"Synthetic securitisations of residential mortgages are unusual, particularly outside of the US, in light of the risk weights that are usually applied to performing mortgages. As such, Syon 2019 was a landmark and highly successful mortgage risk transfer deal with a number of novel features. It is likely to be an excellent blueprint for others looking to implement similar risk management initiatives relating to higher LTV mortgage lending as property values continue to be impacted in the current economic climate."

Andrew Traynor, Partner, Finance & Capital Markets.

The team involved included: Andrew Traynor, Ian McNamee and Charlotte Chestnutt from the Finance and Capital Markets Group and; Jonathan Sheehan and Eimear Burbridge from the Tax Group. Walkers Jersey office also acted as listing agent for the notes that were listed on the official list of The International Stock Exchange in the Channel Islands. Walkers Professional Services acted as a corporate services provider to the Issuer.


  1. Mergers & Acquisitions: Aviation Finance, and Financial Services -  InterGlobe’s Acquisition of Airborne Capital

"This transaction demonstrates both the expertise of Walkers' corporate team in financial services and aviation M&A and corporate restructurings and their growing presence on such deals within the market. The deal will help Airborne accelerate its plans to have aircraft assets under management in excess of $5bn within the first five years of operations and its transformative effect was recently seen when Airborne completed a US$637 million asset back securitisation in respect of 17 aircraft."

Brendan O'Brien, Partner and Head of Corporate

The team involved included: Brendan O'Brien, Eoin Ryan and Cal Kane from the Corporate Group and; Killian McSharry from the Asset Finance Group.


  1. Financial Services: Aviation Finance, Innovative Financing -  SMBC Aviation, GAEL Aviation Equity Fund (€540 million)

"This transaction was noteworthy for its involvement of our client lender with SMBC Aviation Capital's inaugural aviation equity fund, providing an entry point into the aircraft leasing market for Japanese institutional investors that had not previously invested in aviation. Walkers was delighted to advise our client on the Irish and Cayman aspects of this innovative 8 aircraft transaction, which demonstrated our ability to bring transactions of this complexity to financial close and the confidence the market places in our market leading multi-jurisdictional offering, providing us with a distinct competitive advantage over other Irish domestic firms. Owing to the sophistication and experience of SMBC as arranger, the fund was fully deployed within a relatively short space of time."

David McGovern, Partner and Head of Asset Finance.

The Asset Finance team involved included: David McGovern, Killian McSharry, Michael Caulfield and Keith Hyland from the Ireland office and Sarah Humpleby and Richard Williams from the Cayman office.

Some of our Shortlisted Deals:

  1. Mergers & Acquisitions: Zeno Capital Limited -  Tesco Distribution Centre (€160 million)

"Alongside Ashurst LLP, Walkers were delighted to act for KTB Investments & Securities together with KTB Asset Management on the €160 million off-market acquisition of Ireland's largest building by way of share sale. The acquisition of the company holding the Tesco distribution centre in Donabate, Co Dublin, represents the largest single-asset logistics transaction to have taken place in Ireland. This deal involved a multi-disciplinary and cross-jurisdictional Walkers' team advising on the Irish and British Virgin Islands aspects of this transaction and the complex cross-border financing and capital stack arrangements."  Read more about this deal here: https://www.walkersglobal.com/index.php/legal-services/tax/87-legal-services/1811-walkers-have-advised-the-purchaser-of-ireland-s-largest-logistics-building

Rachel Rodgers, Partner and Head of Real Estate

The team involved included: Brendan O'Brien and Eoin Ryan from the Corporate Group; Rachel Rodgers and Robert Upton from the Real Estate Group; Jonathan Sheehan, Aisling Burke and Niamh Pender from the Tax Group; Jennifer Fox from the Investment Funds Group; Andrew Traynor from the Finance and Capital Markets Group and; Mark Galazzi and Dina Anastas in the London office who advised on the BVI aspects of this transaction.


  1. Mergers and Acquisitions: Elysian Capital's Acquisition of Mergon  

"This transaction involved Elysian Capital's acquisition of a majority stake in Mergon Group, the provider of innovative plastic moulding solutions to the automotive, healthcare and industrial sectors. This investment allows Mergon to enter a new growth phase with the goal of growing its business by 50% in the next three years. Mergon plans to accelerate its international expansion, building on its offering in China in particular, and to diversify into new products. Walkers is pleased to have acted as Bermuda counsel to Elysian Capital on its investment and Walkers' Bermuda office was instructed by Addleshaw Goddard LLP, in relation to the acquisition, and by an Irish based law firm in relation to the bank financing." Read more about this deal here: https://www.walkersglobal.com/index.php/matters/1819-walkers-acts-as-bermuda-counsel-on-mergon-group-acquisition

Jonathan Betts, Partner, Finance & Corporate and Funds

The team involved included: Jonathan Betts, Rachel Nightingale, Nathalie West, and Korin Knights from the Bermuda based Finance and Corporate and Funds Group.

*Note: due to confidentiality reasons and client permissions, we are unable to publish details of two of our shortlisted deals.  

To read more about these winning and shortlisted deals, you can view the Finance Dublin 2020 online Deals Booklet and deal commentary here - https://www.financedublin.com/


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