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$10bn mega-deal secured

$10bn mega-deal secured

Philip Podzebenko, Herbert Smith Freehills

Multiple firms advised on the acquisition of the TransGrid high-voltage electricity transmission network from the NSW Government.

Firms: Herbert Smith Freehills (NSW Electricity Networks); Allens (NSW Government); Gilbert + Tobin (banking syndicate)

Deal: NSW Electricity Networks acquired TransGrid from the NSW Government

Value: $10.258 billion

Area: M&A

Key players: The Herbert Smith Freehills corporate team was led by partners Simon Haddy, David Ryan and Philip Podzebenko (pictured). They were assisted by partner Philippa Stone, special counsel Rob Finlay and executive counsel Peter Davis. The finance team was led by partners Joel Rennie and Erin Wakelin, assisted by senior associate Amelia Fleming.

The Gilbert + Tobin team was led by partner John Schembri and senior lawyer David Kirkland, with assistance from special counsel Caroline Mathie, and lawyers, Gwynn Thurlow, Adela Smith and Rob Scutella.

The Allens team consisted of partners John Greig, Andrew Mansour, Kylie Brown, Kate Towey, Anna Collyer, Ian McGill, Rob Watt, Veronica Siow, Jodi Reinmuth and Charles Armitage, managing associates Chris Blane and Scott McCoy, senior associates Damien Hughes, Sikeli Ratu and Charles Ashton, associates Will Coote and Chris Travers, and overseas consultant Dan Ireland.

Deal significance: NSW Electricity Networks is a consortium comprising Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, Hastings (as manager of Utilities Trust of Australia), Tawreed Investments Limited, Wren House Infrastructure and Spark Infrastructure Group.

NSW Electricity Networks acquired the TransGrid high-voltage electricity transmission network from the NSW Government for $10.258 billion.

The acquisition was financed with a $5.5 billion limited recourse financing package provided by a syndicate of 12 domestic and international lenders.

NSW Electricity Networks acquired the TransGrid assets by way of a 99-year lease from the NSW Government.

The NSW Government ran a competitive auction process, which declared NSW Electricity Networks the successful bidder for the TransGrid assets on 25 November with binding documents signed on 26 November.

Allens partner John Greig said: “The transaction has been complex and demanding. The work builds our electricity transaction and reform experience for government in every participating state in the National Electricity Market.”

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