Akin Gump announced the addition of a four-partner financial restructuring and global debt finance team. Thomas F. O’Connor, Renée M. Dailey, Christopher E. Lawrence and Chester L. (“Chip”) Fisher all joined Akin Gump from Morgan Lewis. Mr. O’Connor will reside in Akin Gump’s London office, while Ms. Dailey and Messrs. Fisher and Lawrence will launch the firm’s new Hartford, Connecticut office.
The team focuses on the institutional debt private placement market across the globe, with a practice encompassing a wide range of private placement financing transactions and financial restructuring matters. Their arrival significantly enhances the firm’s capabilities and strengths advising institutional private placement investors on financings and restructurings worldwide, and reunites former colleagues who have significant experience in representing the institutional investor market in all aspects of their investments.
On the front-end finance side, the team represents institutional investors in a wide variety of private placement debt and equity financings, ranging from investment-grade unsecured note placements to secured structured financings to below-investment-grade mezzanine and acquisition financings.
The incoming team’s financial restructuring practice primarily represents private placement noteholders from the institutional private placement community in complex financial restructuring and amendment and modification transactions.
About Thomas F. O’Connor
Mr. O’Connor, who was the London office practice group leader of Morgan Lewis’ transactional finance practice, represents institutional investors, insurance companies, investment funds and other institutional lenders in connection with the acquisition of privately placed debt and equity securities and in connection with other financing transactions throughout Europe, North and South America and Australia. His representation of institutional investors includes investment-grade and below-investment-grade secured and unsecured financings, mezzanine financings, and leveraged and acquisition finance transactions. In addition, he has represented investors in connection with private equity co-investment transactions and debt to equity conversions. Mr. O’Connor is experienced in the complex corporate law and intercreditor aspects of those transactions, as well as in connection with the modifications and restructurings of such investments at other points in the business cycle.
About Renée M. Dailey
Ms. Dailey, who was co-head of the restructuring and bankruptcy practice at Morgan Lewis, advises institutional investors in U.S. and cross-border financial restructuring matters, with a particular focus on Australian investments. She frequently represents public and private noteholder groups and other creditor groups in amendment and consent requests, complex out-of-court restructurings and in-court proceedings in the United States and internationally. She also advises clients on general investment activities and proposed investment structures, with a focus on the mitigation of financial risk. Ms. Dailey’s experience includes matters across multiple industries, including oil and gas, power, engineering and construction, real estate, mining and retail.
About Christopher E. Lawrence
Mr. Lawrence’s practice focuses on the representation of insurance companies, banks, investment funds and other lenders in a wide range of secured and unsecured debt and equity financing transactions. This includes private placement financings, mezzanine financings, first and second lien debt financings, “one-stop” and unitranche financings, private equity fund investments and private securities offerings. In the past, he has represented lenders in connection with leveraged buyout, cash flow and asset-based lending transactions; project financings; maritime financings; and cross-border financings. Mr. Lawrence also represents lenders in out-of-court workouts, reorganizations and debt restructurings and advises clients in the purchase and sale of distressed loans and other debt instruments.
About Chip Fisher
Mr. Fisher has focused throughout his career on the representation of institutional purchasers of privately placed debt and equity securities, including project financing, secured and unsecured lending transactions, and mezzanine and other subordinated debt and equity investments. He has also represented these investors in a number of high-profile financial restructurings.