7 October 2004 LAWFUEL – Law news, legal, attorney, law marketing, law firm newsDLA has expanded its project finance team in London with two lateral hires from magic circle firms and two senior associates. Debbie Barbour is a highly experienced project finance lawyer from Clifford Chance who joined DLA as a partner last month having worked for her previous firm for over seven years, two of which years were as head of project finance in Dubai. She has advised on project finance issues in Australasia, Africa, the Middle East and the UK.
Debbie specialises in advising lead arrangers of debt and project borrowers on deals across a range of sectors, including oil, gas and transport and has also worked in-house during periods of secondment with Barclays Capital project finance transactional team and for International Power.
In November, Anil Mehta will also join DLA’s project finance team in London. Anil joins DLA from Allen & Overy and will be focusing on deals in the healthcare, prison and education sectors as well as the secondary markets sector.
Anil, a senior associate at Allen & Overy prior to joining DLA, has advised lenders, bond arrangers, monolines and private equity investors across all sectors, particularly on large PFI deals in the healthcare sector. High profile deals that he has been involved in include the £1.1 billion Barts and Royal London Hospital’s PPP project – the largest PPP healthcare project to date.
Anil will start on 1 November as a partner.
Morris Blumenthal is also joining DLA as an associate, having spent the last five years working in Clifford Chance’s project finance team. He has previously advised both lenders and sponsors on a wide range of matters in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, including UK PPP work, energy-related asset acquisitions, oil-backed prepayment financings and Islamic finance. Morris also spent nine months on secondment to ABN AMRO’s in-house legal team. He will be working closely with Debbie and Anil.
Harry Brunt joins DLA as an associate from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and specialises in defence projects finance transactions. He spent five years at Simmons & Simmons advising the Ministry of Defence, followed by three years at Freshfields in Korea, advising international clients on projects in Asia. Harry will start on 6 December.
DLA’s infrastructure and project finance team is extremely active in the UK market, having completed 127 projects with a capital value in excess of £9 billion in the past five years and is currently working on a further 86 projects with a capital value of nearly £17 billion. The team also advises funders and consortiums on projects in Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Italy and Norway and has an established capability in France, Germany, Hungary, the Netherlands and Spain.
Mark Swindell, head of the Commercial & Projects Group said: “Infrastructure project finance work is one of the firm’s core strengths in the UK. We have good relationships with international funders and contractors and intend to maximise opportunities to undertake infrastructure and project finance transactions across Europe. Debbie, Anil, Morris and Harry are significant additions to the team and we expect to announce further appointments soon.”