Walkers Legal Internship Programme nurtures future talent

Walkers is delighted to announce that its Legal Internship Programme ran for three weeks, from 17 July to 4 August.  Hosting 10 students this summer, the programme was designed to provide these aspiring legal professionals with an opportunity to gain hands-on experience in a leading global law firm.

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Jan Golaszewski joins Walkers team in London as Insolvency & Dispute Resolution partner

Leading offshore Insolvency & Dispute Resolution lawyer Jan Golaszewski has joined Walkers team in London in a lateral partner hire from another offshore law firm in the City.

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What can we learn from recent enforcement actions in the Cayman Islands?

Walkers' regulatory partners Lucy Frew and Ian Mason consider the learning points for financial services providers (FSPs) from recent enforcement actions by Cayman regulatory bodies.

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Walkers announces 29 senior legal and professional services promotions

Walkers, the international financial services firm, is boosting its legal and professional services teams with 28 senior promotions effective from 1 July.

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Walkers (Cayman) acts on Vector Acquisition Corporation's business combination with Rocket Lab to create a publicly traded end-to-end space company

Walkers' Cayman Islands office is pleased to have acted as Cayman Islands counsel to Vector Capital in connection with Vector Acquisition Corporation's business combination with Rocket Lab, a leader in end-to-end space services spanning launch, spacecraft manufacture and on-orbit spacecraft management, which has commenced trading on the Nasdaq under the ticker "RKLB".  Gross proceeds to Rocket Lab totalled $777 million, combining funds held in Vector Acquisition Corporation's trust account and concurrent PIPE financing.

Walkers was instructed by Kirkland & Ellis LLP and was led by Cayman Islands partner Melissa Lim and senior counsel Matt Bernardo, with assistance from associates Jennifer Sangaroonthong and Aoife Murphy.

Walkers Advises Kitopi on US$415 Million Series C Funding Round

Walkers acted as British Virgin Islands counsel to leading managed cloud kitchen platform Kitopi on its US$415 million Series C funding round. The round was led by Softbank Vision Fund 2, with participation from Chimera, DisruptAD, B. Riley, Dogus Group, Next Play Capital, and Nordstar.

Kitopi, which stands for Kitchen Utopia, is headquartered in Dubai with over 2,500 staff.  Kitopi will channel the new funding to fuel its continued expansion within the Middle East and support entry to new markets such as Southeast Asia.  Kitopi will also continue to innovate and expand its tech stack, grow its strategic restaurant partnerships and build a best-in-class team across the organization.

Walkers' team was led by Associate Yannick Whorms with support from Partners Daniel Wood and Tom Cochrane.

Mahmoud Awad, Chief Legal Officer at Kitopi, commented: "With parties in various time zones around the world, Walkers went above and beyond to make themselves available - working odd hours and long weekends. The team, in particular Yannick Whorms and Daniel Wood, provided sound and practical advice which proved to be instrumental in getting the deal over the finish line. We felt we were in safe hands throughout the entire process."

Walkers advises on Blackbird II's $745m asset-backed notes issuance

Walkers acted as Cayman Islands legal counsel in Air Lease Corporation's ("ALC") recent $745m asset-backed notes offering in collaboration with Blackbird Capital II LLC ("Blackbird II"), the joint venture established by ALC and Napier Park Global Capital. 

The transaction included the issuance by Blackbird Capital II Aircraft Lease Limited (“BBIRD Cayman”, a Cayman Islands exempted company) and Blackbird Capital II Aircraft Lease US LLC (“BBIRD USA”, a Delaware LLC, together with BBIRD Cayman the "Issuers") of $745,000,000 of Fixed Rate Notes, comprised of US$630,000,000 2.443% Series A Fixed Rate Notes and US$115,000,000 3.446% Series B Fixed Rate Notes and equity in the form of an E Note. The Notes are backed by a portfolio of 18 aircraft, comprising a mix of narrowbody and widebody jet aircraft which, as of 31 May 2021, had an average age of 2.9 years and were leased or expected to be leased to 12 lessees based in 11 countries.

Walkers are providing registered office and share trustee services to BBIRD Cayman and acted as both Cayman legal counsel and counsel with respect to the listing of the Notes on the Cayman Islands Stock Exchange.

Walkers, led in the Cayman Islands by partners James Burch and Joanne Ziegler and assisted by associate Liam Woodward, was instructed by Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP, US counsel to Air Lease Corporation and the Issuers.

Walkers (Ireland) LLP advises Hertz on successful financial restructuring

Walkers (Ireland) LLP is delighted to have acted as Irish legal and tax counsel to Hertz Global Holdings Inc, the world's largest rental car company, in relation to its successful restructuring of $19 billion of debt and return of $1 billion of value to shareholders. Walkers acted alongside White & Case, who provided US and European counsel to Hertz.

Following the successful completion of a Chapter 11 restructuring in the US last month, Hertz has emerged as a financially and operationally stronger company that is well-positioned for the future.

Under the Hertz reorganization plan, new investors provided c. US$5.9 billion of new equity capital and the company raised US$2.8 billion of new corporate financing on favourable terms including an undrawn US$1.25 billion revolver and successfully placed US$7 billion of new ABS financing with an all-in yield of less than 2 percent. The complex transaction results in a materially strengthened business with the global liquidity needed to fuel its future growth, while reducing corporate debt by c. US$5 billion. All creditors are being paid in full, in cash, and shareholders are receiving a mix of cash, stock and warrants.

As described by Judge Mary Walrath in the Bankruptcy Court of Delaware, the outcome is a "fantastic result" that "surpasses any result that I've seen in any Chapter 11 case that I've faced in my 20-plus years."

The Walkers Ireland multi-disciplinary team was led by Partners William Greensmyth (Restructuring), Jonathan Sheehan (Tax), Andrew Traynor (Finance and Capital Markets) and Brendan O'Brien (Corporate).

Walkers is recognised as having a market-leading restructuring, insolvency and corporate recovery team amongst Ireland's international financial services law firms.

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Walkers Advises Yili Group on its Privatization of China ZhongDi

Walkers acted as Cayman Islands counsel to Wholesome Harvest Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Inner Mongolia Yili Industrial Group Company Limited, in its US$213 million privatization of the Hong Kong-listed China ZhongDi Dairy Holdings. Wholesome Harvest Limited made the mandatory conditional cash offer through CLSA Limited.

Walkers' team was led by Hong Kong partner Jo Lit and assisted by legal manager Beverly Lui.

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