"An excellent private equity practice ..."
IFLR 1000, 2013
Gleiss Lutz has one of Germany’s leading private equity practices. We support national and international financial investors through the entire lifecycle of an investment project. The spectrum of advice we offer covers acquisition, the development of a tax-efficient acquisition structure, acquisition financing, and the formulation of a management participation scheme. We also assist with equity syndication, standard post-closing or troubled company restructuring efforts, refinancing and recapitalisations, as well as add-on acquisitions and divestments. At the end of the investment lifecycle, we help clients evaluate exit options, such as private sales, IPOs, or dual-track processes. Gleiss Lutz’s full-service approach means that our private equity specialists can draw on the experience of recognised experts from across all the relevant practice areas and industry groups we cover to deliver tailored, seamless solutions for our clients.
Gleiss Lutz advises clients on all legal and tax aspects of the full array of acquisition strategies, from leveraged buy-outs, management buy-outs, management buy-ins, and similar structures, to public takeovers and take-private transactions. We also offer advice on the purchase of minority shareholdings. Although our focus is primarily on large-cap transactions, we also handle small- and mid-cap transactions.
A key focus of our practice is on acquisition financing. This includes senior and mezzanine syndicated bank loans, high-yield bonds and other obligations and forms of debt financing, as well as hybrid and equity capital financing. With a breadth of experience and market knowledge gained from working on both sides of the fence, our financing experts are uniquely placed to effectively and efficiently advise both financial investors as well as financing banks.
We mainly advise private equity firms – but also management teams – on the legal and tax implications of management and employee incentive plans. Our relevant expertise extends from stock option plans for senior executives, to models covering several management levels through to complex, global management and employee incentive programmes.
Our experience in this area ranges from “plain vanilla” post-closing equity syndications to other financial or strategic investors, to friends and family programmes, as well as special forms of equity syndication, such as club deals and equity bridges.
When it comes to tax-optimised or distressed post-acquisition restructuring efforts, our private equity team can draw on the expertise and experience of our restructuring practice, which has a longstanding reputation as one of the market leaders in Germany. We advise and support companies facing or in the midst of financial crisis, out-of-court restructurings or insolvency. During the recent economic crisis, our private equity and restructuring teams jointly advised a whole host of private equity portfolio companies on high-profile and highly complex restructuring cases.
Our integrated teams of private equity and financing specialists advise on the full spectrum of refinancing and recapitalisation measures – covering the development and implementation of all related tax, corporate and financing strategies.
We help investors choose an exit strategy for their private equity investment, be it an IPO, or the sale to another sponsor (e.g. in the form of a secondary or tertiary buy-out) or strategic investor. Our private equity specialists work closely with our capital markets team on floatations. And in connection with direct divestments to other financial or strategic investors, we handle all preparatory steps ahead of a sale, including vendor due diligence, tax structure planning, stapled financing, review of potential roll-over models, and the actual sale procedure and structuring of the distribution of proceeds. We also advise clients on dual-track processes and related special issue.
Virtually all private equity deals we advise on are cross-border in nature. Our global network of leading local law firms enables us to cover all major jurisdictions around the world. This gives us the flexibility to put together hand-picked, multi-jurisdictional teams best suited to the task at hand. And as an independent law firm, we are free to choose local advisers based on clients’ specific requirements – ensuring consistently high-quality advice and seamless service across borders.