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Paul Hastings LatAm Push Continues with Energy and Project Finance Partner Addition in Proposed New Office in Brazil

December 01, 2015

NEW YORK -- Paul Hastings LLP, a leading global law firm, announced today that Roberta Bassegio, a New York and Brazil qualified energy and infrastructure lawyer, will join the firm as a partner and chair of Paul Hastings proposed new office in São Paulo, Brazil, which is subject to regulatory approval. Ms. Bassegio was previously a partner with leading Brazilian law firm Veirano Advogados, where she focused on energy and infrastructure-related project development and finance in Brazil.

“We took a big step forward in broadening our footprint in Latin America when we added finance lawyers Robert Kartheiser and Cathleen McLaughlin in March and bringing on Roberta-who is one of a select group of Finance and Projects lawyers with experience in both Brazil and New York- builds on that momentum,” said Michael Fitzgerald, chair of the Latin America practice group. “We’ve had an active Brazilian bench, which Taisa Markus, a partner with the Latin America practice with two decades of experience in Brazil, has helped to lead. The combination of our existing bench, our newer laterals and now Roberta, catapults our practice to another height,” he added.  

“While Brazil’s economy has cooled recently, the country and its blue-chip players still present major opportunities – bottom line, it remains a key market with regional and global importance for our clients. We have brought together a broad and deep pool of lawyers fluent in Portuguese and with many decades of Brazilian experience across  M&A, finance, energy and infrastructure, anti-corruption and other areas. Opening our office in São Paulo is a natural outgrowth of our commitment to, and investment in, the country and the region,” said Robert Kartheiser, chair of the Project Finance practice and a practitioner in the Brazilian space for 25 years. “Our proposed office along with Roberta’s arrival will propel our leading transactional, disputes, and compliance-focused practice areas, and make them more accessible to our Brazil-based clients. In short, we are taking Paul Hastings in Brazil, and in Latin America, to the next level,” he added.

Ms. Bassegio specializes in the areas of project development and finance, focusing on infrastructure and natural resources. She has represented sponsors, investors, financial institutions, construction conglomerates, and suppliers in some of the most prominent infrastructure projects in Brazil. Her experience also encompasses project structuring, mergers and acquisitions, regulatory and corporate advice, as well as construction and equipment supply agreements. In addition, Ms. Bassegio has substantial expertise in the power industry, including renewables, in both traditional and green field projects.

Among other projects, Ms. Bassegio has assisted high-profile clients in several acquisitions and energy auctions for wind, hydro and thermal power plants, as well as large power consumers within a variety of industries in their power purchase strategies and self-producing power projects. She represented different construction conglomerates in the investment structuring and negotiation of the construction contracts for the Teles Pires and the Belo Monte power plants. She also assisted clients in the logistics sector in the project development and construction of an ethanol pipeline designed to bring ethanol to major consumer centers and ports for export, and in the development of a major port complex in the State of Rio de Janeiro.

The lawyers with the Paul Hastings Latin America and Project Finance practices have advised clients in nearly every industry on some of the largest, most complex, and “first-ever” transactions throughout Latin America. They have worked on several of the most notable deals in the region in 2015, which include : the $4 billion bank financing for the new International Airport in Mexico City, the third busiest airport in the world; the $850 million revolving credit facility to Fibra Uno, the largest bank loan ever to a Latin American real estate company; the $3 billion loan that financed Blackstone’s acquisition of GE’s Mexican commercial mortgage portfolio in Mexico, the largest of its kind in Mexico, making the deal one of the largest real estate financings ever in Latin America; and the Government of Jamaica’s $2 billion SEC registered bond, which was used in part to pay back debt to Venezuelan oil company PDVSA, and marked Jamaica’s largest-ever issuance of debt.

At Paul Hastings, our purpose is clear — to help our clients and people navigate new paths to growth. With a strong presence throughout Asia, Europe, Latin America, and the U.S., Paul Hastings is recognized as one of the world’s most innovative global law firms.