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Herbert Smith Freehills advises Marubeni-backed fund on proposed acquisition of stake in AS Conexus Baltic Grid in Latvia

06 December 2019 | Asia
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Leading global law firm Herbert Smith Freehills has advised MM Capital Infrastructure Fund I (MMCIF) on its proposed acquisition of a 29.06% stake in AS Conexus Baltic Grid (CBG), a unified natural gas transmission and storage operator in Latvia, from the Marguerite Fund.

The transaction is subject to conditions in the Energy and National Security Laws of Latvia.

Managed by MM Capital Partners, MMCIF was formed in 2018 by Marubeni Corporation, Mizuho Bank, Ltd. and Asset Management One Co., Ltd. for the purpose of operating and managing funds specialised in equity investments in overseas infrastructure assets.

Marubeni Corporation is a Japanese trading and investment firm, engaged in a broad range of global business activities including infrastructure, energy, metals and mineral resources, chemicals and food.

MMCIF, after becoming a shareholder of CBG, intends to utilise Marubeni’s knowledge and expertise from existing investments in order to contribute to the successful operation of CBG. MM Capital Partners can also offer to support CBG in procuring a long-term financing by leveraging its relationship with Japanese financial institutions. 

Marguerite, established in 2010 with offices in Luxembourg and Paris, is an alternative investment fund manager licensed in Luxembourg.

The Herbert Smith Freehills team was led by the firm's global head of energy Lewis McDonald and corporate senior associate Eliza Eaton, both based in London, supported by Latvian local counsel Sorainen.  

Lewis said, "We are delighted to have supported MMCIF in its first acquisition in Europe since the recent establishment of the fund, which is strategically significant for MMCIF as it looks to invest in overseas infrastructure assets."

Andrew Blacoe, Herbert Smith Freehills' relationship partner for Marubeni Corporation said, "Marubeni is a long-standing client and so we are very pleased to have the opportunity to support its European growth ambitions, via its interest in MMCIF."

Marguerite was advised by a team from CMS in London, led by partner Charles Currier, together with Latvian local counsel Cobalt. 

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