find the latest legal job
Corporate Counsel and Company Secretary
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Newcastle, Maitland & Hunter NSW
· Highly-respected, innovative and entrepreneurial Not-for-Profit · Competency based Board
View details
Chief Counsel and Company Secretary
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Newcastle, Maitland & Hunter NSW
· Dynamic, high growth organisation · ASX listed market leader
View details
In-house Projects Lawyer | Renewables / Solar | 2-5 Years PQE
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: All Australia
· Help design the future · NASDAQ Listed
View details
Insurance Lawyer (3-5 PAE)
Category: Insurance and Superannuation Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Dynamic organisation ·
View details
Legal Counsel
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: North Sydney NSW 2060
· 18 month fixed term contract · 3-5 years PQE with TMT exposure
View details
Minters on largest banking takeover

Minters on largest banking takeover

MINTER ELLISON has worked on the largest ever banking takeover in a six-month battle for the Royal Bank of Scotland’s bid to take over Dutch banking group ABN AMRO.The Royal Bank of Scotland…

MINTER ELLISON has worked on the largest ever banking takeover in a six-month battle for the Royal Bank of Scotland’s bid to take over Dutch banking group ABN AMRO.

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has won its €71.1 billion ($112 billion) bid to take over ABN AMRO. The cross-border, hostile merger was unprecedented in scale and complexity, Minter Ellison said. Success came when the bank’s consortium declared its bid unconditional.

The firm’s lead partner Ron Forster, who works in the Sydney office, said the fact that it was a contested takeover made the deal an unusual one. Barclays had also made an offer, he said.

“Not only was it the largest but it happened to be unsolicited. Usually mergers in this sector are done on a friendly basis,” he said.

Minter Ellison acted for RBS on all Australian law aspects of the acquisition, both nationally and internationally. This included obtaining all necessary pre-bid approvals.

“From Minter Ellison’s perspective, our role required getting regulatory approval from APRA ... Also to deal with issues relating to ASIC relief from the Corporations Act, which arose because of emerging very large entities offshore. There was a syndicate of three offshore banks, with ABN AMRO, which has extensive existing operations in Australia,” he said.

The firm’s London and Hong Kong offices were involved in the deal. With the office of RBS that was managing Asia-Pacific handling it out of Hong Kong, and the syndicate being driven out of London, these offices had a sizeable role to play.

Forster highlighted the usefulness of having a Hong Kong office for larger international deals. “This is not the first of these sorts of deals. I acted for British Airport Authority when it was taken over. The international offices in that case were also critical. It’s is helpful having the London office and the Hong Kong office. From our perspective as a large firm, we are trying to make the most of our international connections and service these sorts of transactions when we can,” he said.

Linklaters was RBS’s main acquisition counsel focused in London. But Minter Ellison said have the various offices helped it manage the timeline and fit into the time zones offshore.

“For a large transaction like this, you need to get the approvals done in a timely fashion so they can fit in with the offer timetable which is regulated by, in this case, Dutch takeover law. So there was some pressure on us to make sure we didn’t delay the overall acquisition timetable,” Forster said.

Pressed as to whether his practice could expect more of this type of work, Forster told Lawyers Weekly that after the subprime downturn the market quietened down for a short period. “But I believe what we are seeing with the work in the pipeline, is that the market has quickly turned around. We are expecting more M&A activity towards Christmas and the new year.”

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Minters on largest banking takeover
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
LCA president Fiona McLeod SC
Aug 17 2017
Where social fault lines meet the justice gap in Aus
After just returning from a tour of the Northern Territory, LCA president Fiona McLeod SC speaks wit...
Marriage equality flag
Aug 17 2017
ALHR backs High Court challenge to marriage equality postal vote
Australian Lawyers for Human Rights (ALHR) has voiced its support for a constitutional challenge to ...
Give advice
Aug 17 2017
A-G issues advice on judiciary’s public presence
Commonwealth Attorney-General George Brandis QC has offered his advice on the public presence of jud...
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...