Firm: DLA Piper (Transport for NSW); Herbert Smith Freehills (Momentum Trains Consortium), King & Wood Mallesons (debt financiers), Pinsent Masons (Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles), Corrs (UGL), MinterEllison (COB Contractors), Allens (CAF Investments Projects, S.A)
Deal: Transport for NSW has financial close on a deal that will see the deliverance of a regional rail project for the state.
Area: Infrastructure, Transport
Key players: DLA Piper’s team was led by Ian Bendell, David Harley and Kate Papailiou, with support from Alex Regan, former partner Alex Guy, senior foreign legal associate Rachel Crosier and senior counsel Jose de Ponte.
Herbert Smith Freehills’ team was led by partners Andrew Griffiths, Erin Wakelin, Nick Baker, and Erin Wyeth. Support was provided by senior associates Rupert Baker, Joseph Varghese, and Samantha de la Cruz, with solicitors Lan Wei, Yun Yong, Christina Wheeler, and Josh Singer.
Allens’ team advising on the deal involved joint-lead partner and head of infrastructure and transport David Donnelly, with managing associate Paul Telford.
Deal significance: Transport for NSW achieved contract close on the Regional Rail Project, which will see a fleet of new trains delivering safer, more comfortable and more reliable journeys across the state, a DLA Piper statement said.
The project is a ‘Design, Build, Finance, Maintain’ procurement to replace the ageing XPT, XPLORER and Endeavour diesel fleets, as well as provide a new purpose built maintenance facility in Dubbo, with ongoing maintenance of the new fleet for at least 15 years, it was noted.
For lead partner on the Transport for NSW side, Ian Blendell said “DLA Piper is proud to have helped Transport for NSW deliver this critical new infrastructure”.
“It has been an innovative and challenging project, which has demanded the very highest levels of expertise and dedication,” he continued.
“We are very happy to have been part of the extraordinary TfNSW team that has worked tirelessly to achieve this milestone.”
The Momentum Trains consortium achieved the winning bid, and comprised of CIMIC Group companies Pacific Partnerships, UGL and CPB Contractors, DIF, CAF Investment Projects, and Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles, according to Herbert Smith Freehills.
The firm said the project is expected to commence this year, with the first trains to enter service progressively from 2023.
Lead partner Andrew Griffiths said the team was “delighted to have advised Momentum Trains on this important project delivering great outcomes for regional communities and more broadly for rail passengers in NSW”.
He said that “the consortium members should be congratulated for their commitment to delivering an outstanding project.”
CAF Investment Projects, S.A. participated in the successful Momentum Trains consortium bid, with Allens providing CAF IP on its equity participation in the project, which the firm said “included a number of bespoke end-of-term and debt repayment features designed to maximise flexibility and value for money for the state”.
“We were excited to work with CAF IP on its first transaction in the Australian PPP market, and grateful for the insights we gained from its international perspective,” said Allens’ Mr Donnelly.
“This project builds on our broad experience advising on vital infrastructure investment in Australia, particularly in the PPP market and we are looking forward to working with the CAF IP team and other market participants on the broad range of PPPs expected to come to market in Australia as a number of jurisdictions move out of election years,” he continued.