Banking & Finance

Banking & Finance - California


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What the team is known for Retains its position as one of the most prominent banking and finance groups in the market. Recognized for the strength and depth of its team, which is well equipped to provide a comprehensive service to both borrower and lender clients. The West Coast practice makes use of the firm's substantial geographic footprint, working with other offices both in the USA and overseas.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Latham is superb in a broad range of subject areas. The service is excellent."

"They're top notch, professional and have good knowledge of the market. They're just one of the best law firms out there - they know their stuff."  

Work highlights Acted for a group of arrangers, including Citigroup, in relation to $2.375 billion of financing for Crestwood Midstream Partners, for the acquisition of the partnership interests of Inergy Midstream and Inergy.

Advised lead arranger Goldman Sachs in connection with a secured $2.25 billion term loan facility for J.C. Penney.

Notable practitioners  

John Jameson "does excellent work," according to sources who also describe him as "smart and practical." Of recent note, he advised Alliance Healthcare Services in connection with a new $470 million credit agreement.

According to commentators Gregory Robins is "a creative and balanced lawyer who understands the breadth of finance practice and can bring that experience to bear constructively on a wide range of deals." He acted for a syndicate of banks as the arrangers of a $600 million secured acquisition financing for American Greetings.

Glen Collyer acts for a mix of borrowers, sponsors and lenders. He is a "very good technical lawyer," who interviewees appreciate is "very knowledgeable of industry trends and deal terms, and very responsive to all requests."

The "excellent" John Mendez is highly respected within the industry. He splits his time between the firm's Los Angeles and New York offices, and maintains a stellar transactional practice that is international in scope. Of late he represented Village Roadshow Films with regards to its complex $1.125 billion refinancing.

Significant clients Credit Suisse, GE Capital, Macquarie Capital, UBS, Deutsche Bank AG.

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What the team is known for Continues to be seen as a preeminent player in the California market, maintaining a balance of expertise on both the lender and borrower sides. Demonstrates particular capability in leveraged finance, often acting for leading private equity funds, institutional investors and financial institutions in complex transactions. Offers strength across a wide spectrum of industries, including retail, real estate and hospitality.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Excellent in every respect."  

"A great issuer practice."  

Work highlights Represented Hillshire Brands with regard to $3.2 billion of financing, including a senior unsecured credit facility, a senior unsecured bridge loan and a private placement.

Acted on behalf of Visa in relation to a $3 billion unsecured revolving credit facility.

Notable practitioners  

David Reamer is valued by clients for his effective advocacy skills in difficult situations. Commentators also note that he possesses a "tremendously broad knowledge of current industry trends as well as the applicable law, which he can utilize to be a very effective negotiator." He represented Penn National Gaming with regard to a refinancing, and the spin-off of real estate properties into a public REIT, involving $4.75 billion of debt.

The "excellent" Kristine Dunn acted for Harbor Freight Tools in relation to a $1 billion covenant-lite term loan. She is experienced in a wide array of finance transactions, such as leveraged buyouts, asset-based loans and bridge loans, and her clients include investors, borrowers and corporations.  

Sources view David Kitchen as "an incredible asset to the firm," highlighting his vast subject knowledge, as well as the fact that he is "incredibly responsive and always manages to take the time to thoroughly explain matters." His recent work includes acting for Credit Suisse in connection with $325 million of senior secured credit facilities for Atlas Iron.

Significant clients American Apparel, Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, Alexander & Baldwin, Hoyts Group Holdings.

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What the team is known for Remains a highly regarded banking and finance team, adept at advising across the full scale of loan transactions. Recognized for its skill acting for issuers and borrowers, but has also developed significant capability on the lender side of late. Offers substantial expertise in acquisition financings.  

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Gibson is very good, both at the law and also at giving good practical advice."

"They are extremely knowledgeable and very thorough. You get the sense that they would painstakingly go through the 150-page agreement." 

Work highlights Represented AECOM Technology in relation to a $1.05 billion amended unsecured revolving credit facility.

Advised on an amended and restated $1.07 billion credit agreement on behalf of Bally Technologies.

Notable practitioners  

The "excellent" Cromwell Montgomery is well respected in the market, and wins praise from sources for being "very professional and very good to work with." Of recent note he represented Bally Technologies with regard to a $1.07 billion credit agreement that was amended and restated.

The "fantastic" Linda Curtis is commended for her "wealth of experience and dedication," with interviewees particularly highlighting that she "understands the market and pays attention to every detail." She recently acted for Neustar in connection with a $525 million credit agreement.  

Melissa Barshop is well liked by sources, who find her "very good to work with." She is experienced in private placements, exchange offers and debt restructurings.

Significant clients Actian, Ameristar Casinos, CityCenter Holdings, Wells Fargo.

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What the team is known for Represents a number of prominent banks, funds and companies in a wide range of finance transactions, with particular strength in asset-based and cash flow lending. Utilizes the firm's broad overseas network to advise clients on both a domestic and international level. Also offers industry-specific experience in healthcare, software and technology.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They're an outstanding team. They're really good at taking the most complex issues and breaking them down for us. They understand the issues and both sides of the argument."

"Excellent service. The team is very knowledgeable, very resourceful and they have a firm grasp of both the legal and the business issues." 

Work highlights Acted on behalf of Barclays Private Credit Partners, in relation to a $187 million senior secured financing, comprising a term loan facility, a revolving credit facility and a settlement facility.

Represented City National Bank in a range of matters, including a $400 million revolving credit facility for a real estate fund.

Notable practitioners  

Practice chair John Hilson is widely considered "a powerhouse in this area," with one source noting: "He's one of the most knowledgeable lawyers I've ever worked with." His broad expertise includes a focus on representing lenders in complex cross-border transactions. Commentators highlight that he "understands how to get the deal done as well as the legal issues," and also admire that he is "very charismatic, very polished and genuine." 

The "very knowledgeable" Peter Burke receives plaudits for being a "smart, practical, efficient" practitioner, who "knows how to cut right to the chase." Sources especially appreciate that he "knows the right leverage points to hit when we are involved in a challenging negotiation."

Katherine Bell is experienced in a range of commercial and corporate transactions, including subordinated debt financings, and cash flow and asset-based lending. Commentators describe her as "a great lawyer," who is "very smart, detail-oriented, hard-working, doesn't cut corners and is a pleasure to work with."

According to interviewees Jennifer Hildebrandt possesses a "strong grasp of the issues, is extremely capable and has strong command and presence." They also admire that she is "able to come in and work under tight time constraints to get the transaction done."

Jennifer Yount is known for her expertise advising on intercreditor agreements, and recently represented Wells Fargo with regard to a $230 million revolving credit facility for Quiksilver. Sources admire her "vast knowledge base" and highlight that she is "really good at leading the team and understanding the complex issues."

Significant clients Carlyle, Kayne Anderson, Dole/Murdock Holdings, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase.

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What the team is known for Respected regional firm that is equipped to advise on banking and finance matters that are national in scope. Notable areas of expertise include aircraft finance, equipment leasing and healthcare finance. Also maintains a strong focus on asset-based lending.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They're a good partner. They're good at explaining things to the staff and they're responsive."

"Very knowledgeable, user-friendly, fair and reasonable."  

Work highlights Represented Wells Fargo in relation to a $75 million revolving credit facility for a global toy company.

Advised Wells Fargo Capital Finance in connection with its provision of debtor-in-possession financing for video game developer THQ's high-profile bankruptcy. 

Notable practitioners  

Bank and finance practice group chair Anthony Callobre is described as "professional, efficient and straightforward." His experience with finance transactions spans a range of industries, including retail, transportation and engineering. Sources also note that "he's very easygoing and easy to work with."

Robert Davidson is "a good problem solver" according to interviewees. He represents both borrowers and lenders in a variety of financial transactions, such as leveraged acquisitions, cross-border financings and loan workouts.

Sources admire that Ariel Berrios "brings a lot of passion to his work, and is relationship focused." Commentators have also been impressed by his broad experience in the field, which encompasses cash-flow lending, bridge financing and asset-based lending.

William Schoenholz is noted for his excellent grasp of inter-creditor agreements and his ability to protect client interests in complicated negotiations. He acts for funds, banks and finance companies in a range of finance transactions, on both a national and international level.

Significant clients Bank of the West, East West Bank, Silicon Valley Bank, HSBC Bank, US Bank.

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What the team is known for Continues to establish a substantial presence in the California market with significant borrower-side expertise. Represents a wealth of private equity funds, offering skill across a wide array of debt financing transactions such as dividend recapitalizations, leveraged financings, opportunistic investments and restructurings.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Excellent - the thing I'm most pleased with is the availability and the very quick and accurate work."

"Their turnaround is very quick, they're really good at coordinating a lot of groups - they've got everybody covered."

Work highlights Represented Blum Capital and Golden Gate Capital in connection with $555 million of committed senior secured financing used to part fund the acquisition of Collective Brands' Payless ShoeSource business.

Acted on behalf of Insight Pharmaceuticals and Swander Pace Capital with regards to its £310 million senior secured dividend recapitalization financing.

Notable practitioners  

Samantha Good offers a broad range of experience that covers exit financings, workouts and subordinated debt and mezzanine financing. Sources find her "super responsive," and admire the fact that "she isn't afraid to push on behalf of the client," and note that "it feels good to have her on your side."

David Nemecek advises on recapitalizations, leveraged buyouts and other sophisticated finance transactions on behalf of hedge funds, corporate borrowers and private equity sponsors. Interviewees highlight that he is "a very smart and talented lawyer."

The "extremely commercial" Christopher Kirkham wins praise for the fact that he does not "get bogged down in the minutiae." Of recent note he represented Insight Pharmaceuticals and Swander Pace Capital in relation to its $310 million dividend recapitalization financing.

Significant clients Thorna Bravo, Francisco Partners, Vista Equity Partners, Vector Capital, H.I.G. Capital.

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What the team is known for Represents a diverse client base, comprising prominent borrowers, banks and non-bank lenders. Demonstrates capability across a broad spectrum of transactions, including asset-based and cash-flow lending, syndicated finance and private note placements. Well positioned to advise on cross-border matters.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)

"They bring the resources of a mega firm, but also give us the attention like we are the most important client that they have. They make themselves available at all hours of the night and turn out a consistent quality work product."

"The Bingham team treats us with respect and harbors a culture of excellence that appeals to my firm. Bingham is always consistent."

What's new? Morgan Lewis was recently bolstered by the addition of a respected group of finance attorneys from Bingham McCutchen, including the Los Angeles-based Mark Spitzer.

Work highlights Acted for Union Bank in financing its acquisition of PNC Bank's SmartStreet division, with $1 billion worth of accounts.

Represented Endeavour Structured Equity and Mezzanine Fund in relation to its $18 million multi-draw senior subordinated credit investment in an Altamont Capital Partners affiliate.

Notable practitioners  

Marshall Stoddard comes highly recommended for his expertise in asset-based lending. According to interviewees, "he is astute at handling large complex credit facilities, including those with international components. His legal skill in drafting and negotiating sophisticated legal documents is exceptional."

Mark Spitzer's "knowledge base and depth of experience, particularly when negotiating inter-creditor agreements," stand out to sources. They also note that he brings a level of credibility to transactions, and is "able to defuse any tense situations." He focuses on representing creditors in a wide range of lending transactions.

Significant clients Prudential Capital, GE Antares Capital, Bank of America, Ares Capital, Platinum Equity.

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What the team is known for Regularly acts for prominent banks as well as borrower clients. Operates in some niche areas of finance, such as gaming for Native American tribes. Also acts for a raft of energy clients, and is adept at acquisition financing.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"The senior lawyers have the ability to take the legal issues and boil them down for a banker to understand. They can easily lay out the risk and give us what our options are."

"They're extremely responsive and definitely mindful of areas where we could run into problems because they know the company so well and they know the kind of things we do."  

Work highlights Represented Wells Fargo in connection with $600 million of senior financing for Mashantucket Pequot Tribe, as part of its $2.3 billion debt restructuring.

Acted for Equinix with regards to $750 million of senior secured syndicated multi-currency financing, consisting of a term loan and a revolving credit facility.

Notable practitioners  

Alan Benjamin is held in high regard by sources who describe him as a "very thoughtful, practical and results-oriented partner." He is an expert in lending to Native American tribes, and recently acted for Wells Fargo with regard to $600 million of financing for the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe. Interviewees add that "you really feel like you can rely on his guidance." 

Dolph Hellman is admired for bringing "a lot of good, practical advice" to matters. He is cochair of the private investment funds group at the firm, and largely focuses on private debt transactions, fund formation and the representation of private equity investors.

Zachary Finley is considered a "partner-caliber associate" who "goes above and beyond to provide good service." Commentators also highlight that he is very easy to work with, and "brings a very good business sense."

Significant clients Barclays, Bank of Nova Scotia, Banco Santander, Deutsche Bank, Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria.

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What the team is known for Noted for its proficiency acting for sponsors, and offers a full-service capability advising on the placing, issuing and underwriting of high-yield and bank debt bonds. Works closely with the firm's overseas offices to offer a seamless service on multi-jurisdictional matters.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They have a great presence in the US as well as international connections. To be able to have the consistency of talent that we encounter with them is one of their great strengths." 

Work highlights Advised Ares Management on several complex matters, including $870 million in financing for the acquisition of warehouse retailer Smart & Final.

Represented SolarCity in relation to $100 million of secured solar panel lease financing.

Notable practitioners  

The "fantastic" Steven Weise is seen as "a legend" of the industry. According to interviewees he is "able to look around the corner to anticipate problems or issues, and is always ready with terrific solutions." He offers a wealth of experience advising on letters of credit, equipment leasing and structured financing, and in a recent highlight acted for SolarCity in relation to $100 million of solar panel lease financing.  

Clients consider Neil Cummings "a true business partner," and describe him as "very smart, calm and thoughtful." His clients include investors, lead arrangers and private equity firms; he recently represented MarketAxess Holdings in connection with a $50 million working capital credit facility.

Glen Lim is recognized as "a solid, knowledgeable lawyer." He concentrates on representing both borrowers and lenders in a wide range of national and international financing transactions.

"Fantastic attorney" Sandra Lee Montgomery is praised for her commercial approach and ability to "not get bogged down on items that are not important." According to interviewees, she is also "articulate with her thoughts and precise in her responses." She recently moved from Bingham McCutchen LLP to Proskauer Rose LLP.

Significant clients General Nutrition Centers, Credit Suisse, The Gores Group, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America.

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What the team is known for Largely concentrates on advising on transactions in the middle and upper middle market, where it demonstrates capability acting on both the borrower and lender sides. Key areas of expertise include corporate finance, asset-based lending and mezzanine lending. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Everyone I have dealt with at McDermott Will & Emery over the years has been professional, knowledgeable and solid in their understanding of our needs and how to protect us." 

"They're responsive, able and willing to provide us resources on our timeline."

Work highlights Acted on behalf of Prime Healthcare Services in relation to the amendment of $500 million credit facilities, and a $130 million sale-leaseback transaction with Medical Properties Trust.

Advised GE Capital with regards $300 million of senior secured financing, made up of term loan, revolving credit and capital expenditures facilities.

Notable practitioners  

Gary Rosenbaum has experience of advising on leveraged finance transactions involving a wide variety of sectors, such as life sciences, telecommunications and manufacturing. Sources find him "great to deal with at all times," and particularly admire that he "understands the balance between informing and protecting his clients, and when to hold back and not push."

Significant clients Advantage Capital Partners, Bayside Capital, H.I.G. Growth Partners, Prime Healthcare Management, Union Bank.

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What the team is known for Recognized for its strength in energy and clean tech lending, where it has built up a substantial base of experience. Adopts a multidisciplinary approach to matters and works together with the firm's real estate, fund and tax experts to offer a comprehensive service to clients.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"They're excellent lawyers, very well versed and very cooperative." 

Work highlights Acted for SoftBank advising on all of the debt financing aspects involved in its acquisition of Sprint Nextel.

Represented The Campbell Group's affiliates in several matters, including updates to $1.2 billion of debt facilities.

Notable practitioners  

Daniel Leventhal maintains a good reputation in the market. He is adept at advising on a variety of secured and unsecured finance transactions, including asset-based lending, project finance and restructurings.

Significant clients American Pacific, CleanEnergy Fuels, Capricorn Investment Group, Mega International Commercial Bank, Global Cash Access.

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What the team is known for Expertise in the niche area of affordable housing financing, offering advice on term and construction loans on behalf of credit enhancers and financial institutions. Also proficient across a wider range of commercial transactions, including mezzanine lending and workouts.

Work highlights Acted for Bank of America with regard to $200 million of revolving credit and term facilities to an Indian tribe for the purpose of refinancing a hotel and casino's existing debt.  

Advised on the $10.3 million refinancing of the Northern Arapaho Tribe's existing credit facility on behalf of CIT Finance.

Notable practitioners  

Peter Carson offers significant experience advising across a broad spectrum of banking and finance transactions, such as mezzanine, asset-based, bridge and senior syndicated financings. He has a successful track record handling matters that involve a variety of industries including sports, healthcare, agriculture and resorts.

Significant clients California Bank & Trust, Low Income Investment Fund, Wells Fargo, Comerica Bank, Capital One.

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What the team is known for Acts as counsel to borrowers, agents and lenders in a wide range of structured finance transactions, such as mortgage and asset-backed securitizations, repurchase agreements and conduit transactions. Also offers experience in secured financing.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients)
"Extremely responsive, efficient and high quality. We rely on Sidley for advice all the time because they're experts in so many aspects of the legal field." 

Work highlights Acted for Bank of America in relation to a syndicated $150 million senior secured revolving credit facility for IXIA.

Represented R.O.M. in connection with $35 million in financing issued by NXT Capital, comprising both revolving credit and term facilities.

Notable practitioners  

The "terrific" Pamela Martinson wins praise from interviewees who say they "can rely on her to always do the right thing and the best thing from a legal standpoint." Her expertise covers structured finance, acquisition finance and securitizations. She is also recognized for being "extremely knowledgeable in technology lending."

Moshe Kupietzky acts as head of the firm's Los Angeles corporate and finance group and is known in the market as a "very smart lawyer." He focuses his practice on financing transactions, M&A and private investments.

Significant clients Blackstone, MetLife, Morgan Stanley, Fortress, Century Park Capital Partners.

Other Ranked Lawyers 其他上榜律师

Pauline Stevens of Allen Matkins Leck Gamble Mallory & Natsis LLP is described as "smart and thorough" by interviewees. Her substantial experience spans a wide range of matters, including credit enhancement, leveraged finance, exit financings and bridge loans.

Jill Matichak of Chapman and Cutler LLP offers vast experience in the banking and finance sector, with substantial expertise in second lien and mezzanine loans, leveraged acquisition financing and asset-based transactions. Commentators have been impressed by the fact that "she is very meticulous, pays a lot of attention to transactions and is very involved with clients."

The "very knowledgeable" Brian Kilb of Liner LLP advises on a range of secured and unsecured loan transactions, asset financings and leveraged acquisition financings for both borrowers and lenders. 

Brian Newhouse of Mayer Brown LLP advises on financing transactions involving a number of different industries, such as healthcare and construction, usually acting on behalf of financial institutions. 

Sources find Neil Rust of McGuireWoods LLP to be "dedicated, fully committed and actively engaged" in transactions, with the "mindset of how to get a deal done." Commentators also laud his practical approach. 

The "extremely knowledgeable" Gary Samson of McGuireWoods LLP offers capability in all aspects of commercial lending, including investment-grade, cash-flow and asset-based loans. He has substantial industry-specific expertise and advises on matters involving farming, healthcare and oil and gas companies.

Commentators describe Melainie Mansfield of Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP as a "wonderful attorney," whose "professionalism and knowledge in this area of law are fantastic." She is especially experienced in transactions involving the telecommunications and technology industries, and sources also admire that "she and her team are able to jump into a messy deal and effectively advocate for their client."

Tom Baxter of O'Melveny & Myers LLP is well regarded in the market, and particularly noted for his strength handling issuer-side finance work. His wide-ranging experience covers debt restructurings, CLOs, leveraged buyouts and securitizations.  

According to commentators, rising finance star Svetlana Attestatova of Reed Smith LLP has excellent attention to detail and technical expertise. She is also noted for her client service skills.

Bradley Crawford of Vedder Price regularly represents banks, mezzanine funds and insurance companies, advising on an array of equity and debt finance matters, such as asset-based and cash-flow credit facilities. He maintains a solid presence in the market, with sources noting that he is "a very capable lawyer."

Gabriel Gregson of Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP wins praise for being "technically strong, very client-service driven," and "super knowledgeable about the market." He concentrates on handling financings for corporate borrowers and private equity sponsors, and sources add that "he's a good guy to deal with." 

Susan Alker of Winston & Strawn LLP acts for funds, banks and other financial institutions on a variety of corporate loan transactions. Interviewees admire that she "is able to dissect complex topics and present them in a straightforward manner."

Foreign Experts

Foreign Experts are individuals with expertise in a different jurisdiction to the one they are based in. These individuals are particularly highly regarded for international and cross-border work. Usually, they will be identified in the jurisdiction in which they are based and in their country of expertise.

Senior Statesman

A 'Senior Statesman' is a lawyer who no longer works hands-on with the same intensity but who, by virtue of close links with major clients, remains pivotal to the firm’s success.

Eminent Practitioners

'Eminent Practitioners' are highly influential lawyers in a particular practice area who, due to managerial or client relationship commitments, are less active in day-to-day work but remain key players in the team.

Other Noted Practitioners

Other Noted Practitioners are individuals who have not yet been ranked but are seen to be active and accomplished in this area of law.

Other Noted Firms

Other Noted Firms are firms that have not yet been ranked but are seen to be active and accomplished in this area of law.