Mayer Brown announced today that Carl von Merz has joined the firm as a partner in its Corporate & Securities practice in Houston, where he will serve as the head of the US Upstream Oil & Gas group. Mr. von Merz’s arrival further solidifies the firm’s commitment to strategic expansion in the energy sector. Mr. von Merz was previously an oil and gas transactional partner at Bracewell LLP.
“Carl is a widely recognized and highly respected energy lawyer, who has built a robust practice in M&A and private equity investments in the energy industry,” said Alex Chequer, the global leader of the Oil & Gas group at Mayer Brown. ”Thanks to his deep roots in Houston and past work advising clients on their US and international oil and gas matters, including as lead in-house counsel at a major international energy company, Carl will be instrumental in representing companies conducting business locally and globally. This experience, combined with his fluency in Spanish, will help us meet increased client demand for industry-specific advice that is unique to the energy sector in Latin America, including in Brazil and Mexico. The arrival of a lawyer of Carl’s caliber reinforces Mayer Brown’s commitment to investing in top-tier talent to deliver full-service excellence.”
Mr. von Merz represents public and private companies in M&A, divestitures and joint ventures, with a focus on upstream M&A, oil and gas and private equity transactions. In particular, Mr. von Merz works on transactions covering a range of upstream interests, including operated and non-operated working interests and minerals, royalties and other non-cost bearing interests. He has significant experience negotiating and drafting many other types of agreements crucial to upstream operators, such as joint development agreements, participation and farm-out agreements, master service agreements, joint operating agreements, and contracts for the gathering and purchasing of hydrocarbons. Additionally, Mr. von Merz works with private equity funds and management teams on the formation of partnerships, limited liability companies, and other entities for investments related to the energy industry.
“Mayer Brown’s commitment to the growth of its oil and gas capabilities and the opportunity to work with an impressive domestic and international team that includes Dale Smith and Philip Lau, who recently joined the Corporate & Securities practice in Houston, were significant factors in my decision to join the firm,“ said Mr. von Merz. “I look forward to working alongside an outstanding group of colleagues, both in the US and globally, to further enhance Mayer Brown’s core competency in energy transactions and the energy private equity space.”
“Due to the pandemic and separate turbulence in the oil market, we have seen a wave of US energy bankruptcies and out-of-court restructurings,” said Neil Wasserstrom, the managing partner of Mayer Brown’s Houston office. “Carl’s experience and knowledge will play a pivotal role in assisting clients as they navigate the evolving US oil and gas landscape and broader energy landscape. His proven ability to lead on major deals makes him a perfect addition as we continue to build upon our capabilities to meet market demands.”
Mr. von Merz is the latest addition to Mayer Brown’s Corporate & Securities practice, which includes a multidisciplinary global network of lawyers focused on serving the energy, restructuring, private equity, regulatory and cross-border needs of clients. Mr. von Merz’s arrival follows that of Dale Smith, Mark Williams, Philip Lau, James Schell and Vera de Gyarfas, who recently joined as partners in Houston, Washington DC and New York.