McCullough Robertson advised Excel Coal in its takeover through a scheme of arrangement for $2 billion by US-based Peabody Energy Corporation.
Corporate advisory partner Jim Peterson, described the merger — which was approved by the Federal Court last month — as the “deal of the year” for his firm.
“We have thoroughly enjoyed the challenge of implementing the merger by a scheme of arrangement. McCullough Robertson has been privileged to lead this transaction for Excel Coal.”
McCulloughs has been advising Excel Coal since it began in 1993. “We have travelled the company’s lifecycle together, from mine acquisitions, disposals and restructures, to project development and then to its listing on the ASX, float and finally takeover,” said project manager and business partner, Damien Clarke.
Former Excel’s managing director, Tony Haggarty, said it was the “most exciting deal in Excel’s history and one of the larger deals in the history of the Australian coal industry”.
Some of the company’s milestones included: the purchase of Wambo in 2001, Metropolitan and Chain Valley in 2002, the winning of the Wilpinjong tender in 2003 and the IPO of Excel Coal in 2004.
As well as Peterson and Clarke McCulloughs 15-strong team that advised Excel Coal included corporate advisory partner Derek Pocock and commercial and mining law specialist Kristen Grover.
Freehills advised counsel for Peabody Energy in the Federal Court.