Firms: King & Wood Mallesons (Melbourne Stadiums Group); DLA Piper (AFL)
Deal: The AFL has purchased Etihad Stadium in Melbourne from Melbourne Stadiums Group.
Key players: The team advising Melbourne Stadiums Group was led by M&A partner Evie Bruce (pictured), with assistance from special counsel Andrew Phillipson, and solicitors Luke Mulcahy and John Arthur.
Partner Claire Rogers and senior associate Chris Allfrey advised on the financing arrangements.
Partner Simone Menz and senior associate Kate George advised on real estate matters, and partner Darren McClafferty and senior associate Greg Protektor advised on the tax aspects of the transaction.
Deal significance: The Etihad Stadium is located in the heart of Melbourne, Victoria.
It opened its doors in 2000 and has hosted national sporting events such as the AFL, A-League and Big Bash League, as well as international sporting events such as the UFC 193, soccer World Cup qualifiers and International Rugby Union tests.
The stadium has also hosted many concerts, featuring big names such as Taylor Swift, Justin Timberlake and Eminem.
Every year, some 35 million people pass through Etihad Stadium’s gates.
“We are delighted to have assisted our client on the sale of this landmark asset,” KWM M&A partner Evie Bruce said.
“The sale process involved complex commercial and legal issues which concerned a range of stakeholders.
“Throughout the process we were able to leverage our market-leading capabilities and experience across a range of practice groups to help execute the transaction and deliver a positive outcome for our client and the future of the stadium.”