Ferrere

Legal 500 Paraguay, 2015

BANKING AND FINANCE

Ferrere has expanded significantly in the past year, bringing in experienced lawyers at partner and associate level. The most notable arrival in Carlos Vasconsellos’ highly rated team was new partner Guillermo Jover, who joined from White & Case LLP in Miami. Jover has a strong track record advising on bilateral and syndicated credit facilities as well as on structured financings and aircraft finance. The firm acts for an impressive mix of domestic and international borrowers and lenders, including the IDB, Bank of America, ABN Amro, and Deutsche Bank. Recent highlights include advising the Netherlands Development Finance Company (FMO) on two syndicated loans with Banco Continental and Banco Regional, worth $50m and $40m respectively. The firm has also advised Oikocredit on loans of over $22m, including €6m worth of loans to Medalla Milagrosa and Capiata to support their respective microfinance portfolios. Another key client is the Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC), which the firm advised on several multimillion-dollar loans to local SMEs. Néstor Loizaga has been particularly active advising major international corporations on financing matters.

CORPORATE AND M&A

Ferrere has an ‘experienced and knowledgeable’ team with a ‘good sense of when a decision is purely legal, or when it rests with the businessmen’. Clients appreciate ‘very helpful and knowledgeable’ team head and managing partner Néstor Loizaga, as well as the ‘smart, capable and very responsive’ Carlos Vasconsellos, who has a ‘broad base of experience’. The associates in the team are also praised for ‘doing the little extra things that make a difference’. The practice received a significant boost with the arrival of Guillermo Jover, who joined as a partner from White & Case LLP in Miami. The firm advised US agro-industrial giant Cargill on the restructuring of its river transport and logistics operations in Paraguay; and, on the M&A side, advised US company Mosaic on the $350m acquisition of ADM’s fertilizer operations in Paraguay and Brazil, as well as acting for Abbot Laboratories on the acquisition of CFR Pharmaceuticals’ Paraguayan subsidiaries, which formed part of the company’s $2.9bn global takeover. Other key clients include Unilever, Vale, Leoni Wiring Systems, Schlumberger and Diageo.

LABOUR AND EMPLOYMENT

The ‘level of service is excellent’ at Ferrere, which ‘provides responses in a timely manner’ and presents advice ‘in a clear, commercial and direct fashion’. The team, which is led by recently promoted partner Marysol Estigarribia, has a strong track record acting for a wide range of international companies in both contentious and non-contentious matters. Senior associate Darío Capurro is very well regarded, and is singled out for his ‘responsiveness, availability and commercial advice’ as well as his ‘fluency in English, which is a definite plus’. The firm recently advised a major multinational on its negotiations with senior staff over the termination of their employment contracts. On the non-contentious side, the firm was involved in several due diligence exercises related to corporate acquisitions, as well as advising on the transfer of employees to their new employers. Major clients include Ericsson, Vale, Petrobras, Cargill and Unilever.

TAX

The well-regarded tax team at Ferrere is noted for its advice to international and domestic clients on tax structuring in Paraguay and related cross-border matters; however, the April 2015 departure of team head Anibal Pangrazio to establish his own firm is a particular loss. The firm recently advised Schlumberger on the tax issues involved in its establishment of a permanent presence in Paraguay; and oil-and-gas contractor Queiroz Galvão Óleo e Gás on the tax benefits available to contractors hired by oil concessionaires in Paraguay, as well as on customs issues and related matters such as the repatriation of dividends. Other matters include advising Edenred, a global leader in prepaid corporate services, in relation to the tax impact of its business in Paraguay, particularly in light of the recently introduced personal income-tax laws. Clients include Ericsson, Cargill, Petrobras and Unilever.

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