Ritch Mueller has a history of working on some of the most important deals in Mexico, but this year was a particularly strong year for the firm.
While international law firms continue to expand their presence in Mexico, Ritch Mueller has responded by executing a large array of key transactions across its franchise.
“It was a very good year for us, particularly in capital markets, private equity, energy, restructuring and real estate,” says partner Thomas Mueller-Gastell.
That breadth, combined with Ritch Mueller’s involvement in three of this year’s winning deals, helped it win the award for Law Firm of the Year: Mexico.
Among the deals the firm worked on in the awards period were two transactions by state-owned oil company Pemex, the winner of LatinFinance’s Corporate Issuer of the Year award. In September, Pemex issued a $4 billion dual-tranche bond, using some of the new issue for debt swaps and buybacks across bonds maturing between 2018 and 2047.
The sale was part of the company’s moves to shore up its finances and manage its debt. Ritch Mueller was also involved in the company’s efforts to find ways ways to raise cash, including Pemex’s $1.2 billion sale and leaseback agreement with US private equity fund KKR, a transaction that won Private Equity Deal of the Year.
Adding to its collection of winning deals was the firm’s work on the debut in the euro bond market by Mexican beverage and retail company Femsa.
Mueller-Gastell expects the energy sector to remain a focus for the firm in the coming months. The recent drop in the Mexican peso, triggered by the US election and questions about the future of North American trade under President Donald Trump, could also mean more corporate restructuring work, he says.
“It certainly seems that way unless things miraculously turn around,” he says. LF
Winning deals: Femsa bond, Pemex/KKR sale & leaseback