"strong dedication to cases, significant legal knowledge and hands-on approach."
Chambers Latin America

Overview

Leonardo Morato is a partner in the Litigation, and Restructuring, Bankruptcy & Insolvency practices of Tauil & Chequer Advogados in the São Paulo office. He leads sophisticated restructurings and handles highly complex litigation disputes, in court and in arbitrations, and counsels clients on how to prevent disputes.

Leonardo leads the Restructuring, Bankruptcy & Insolvency practice in Brazil and has strong experience in debt refinancing, distressed M&As, acquisition and sale of distressed assets, and the structuring/restructuring of securities. He has represented high profile clients in complex high-stakes cases such as OAS, Schahin, OGX, OSX, Inepar, Alumini, Independência, Imcopa, Infinity, Celpa, Rede Energia, Agrenco, Arantes, among others.

Clients who are active in the banking & finance, energy, mining, construction, and agriculture industries trust Leonardo’s knowledge, experience, and ability to measure risks and identify the best solutions in any given situation.

Spoken Languages

  • Portuguese
  • English

Experience

  • Represented The Bank of New York Mellon (trustee for twenty billion bond issuances), and several bond holders, in Oi Telecom judicial reorganization
  • Represented HSBC, the largest bank creditor to the bankruptcy of the OAS Group.
  • Represented Mizuho Bank, the largest bank creditor to the bankruptcy of the Schahin Group; and, later, in the same bankruptcy, representation of the three assignees, Deutsche Bank, and the funds VR and QVT.
  • Represented Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Consultores Ltda. (as Bankruptcy Trustee) in the bankruptcy case (Chapter 11) of various groups, such as the OGX and OSX Groups; the Inepar Group; the Delbrás Group; the Novoespaço Group; and the Alumini Group.
  • Represented Deutsche Bank Brazil as administrative and collateral agent in the debt restructuring of the Sampaio Group.
  • Represented HSBC in the debt restructuring of Eneva.
  • Represented HSBC as the main creditor of, and DIP lender to, the Imcopa Group and its investor, Cervejaria Petrópolis Group.
  • Represented HSBC in a civil lawsuit seeking to pierce the corporate veil of Imcopa and hold the Cervejaria Petrópolis Group liable for Imcopa’s indebtedness.
  • Represented a syndicate formed by four Banks (Credit Suisse, Santander, Banco Bradesco and Natixis) and two investment funds in the restructuring of an export prepayment and credit agreement within the scope of the Bankruptcy case (Chapter 11) of the Arantes Group.
  • Represented Portigon AG in the bankruptcy proceedings (Chapter 11 and subsequent Chapter 7) of the Agrenco Group. Portigon filed various lawsuits to enforce its security (provided by third parties), including agricultural warrants (CDA/WA) enforcement proceedings.
  • Represented Banco Banestes (a Brazilian public bank) in the Bankruptcy case (Chapter 11) of the Infinity Group. Banco Banestes adopted a number of measures within the scope of the court-assisted reorganization, including appealing against the decision that confirmed the Reorganization Plan.
  • Represented The Bank of New York Mellon Group as indenture trustee in the general composition with creditors of Lupatech Group, filed with a view to restructuring its bond debt.
  • Represented The Bank of New York Mellon as indenture trustee in the bankruptcy case of various groups, such as the Rede Energia Group and the Arantes Group.
  • Represented The Bank of New York Mellon as indenture trustee for bonds issued prior to the filing for court-assisted reorganization and the bonds issued in connection with the DIP Financing in the bankruptcy case of the Independência Group.
  • Represented The Bank of New York Mellon as collateral agent in the enforcement of the security package for the DIP Financing extended to the Independência Group.
  • Represented The Bank of New York Mellon as indenture trustee in the bankruptcy case of Centrais Elétricas do Pará – Celpa.
  • Represented The Bank of New York Mellon as indenture trustee in the bankruptcy case of the Imcopa Group.
  • Represented The Bank of New York Mellon as indenture trustee in the bankruptcy case of the Sifco Group.
  • Represented Banco de Sabadell – Miami Branch in the liquidation of Banco Cruzeiro do Sul S.A.
  • Represented LCC do Brasil Ltda. and Log-Star Navegação S.A. in their voluntary liquidation proceedings.
  • Represented Nestlé (DPA) as lessee of a major plant owned by LBR in the bankruptcy proceedings (Chapter 11) of the LBR Group.
  • Represented a major company in a domestic arbitration (ICC) that discussed the validity of a port terminal sale after WestLB enforced a share pledge agreement against a foreign affiliate of the Agrenco Group while the Brazilian bankruptcy proceedings were pending.

Education

Pontifícia Universidade Católica, Doctorate in Corporate Law

Pontifícia Universidade Católica, LLM, with honors

Pontifícia Universidade Católica, LLB

Admissions

  • Brazil

Memberships

  • Chairman of the Turnaround Management Association – TMA Brasil – from 2013 to 2015
  • Member of the board of Turnaround Management Association – TMA Brasil – since 2015
  • Director of the Board of Trustees of Turnaround Management Association – TMA Brasil
  • Director of the global board of INSOL International – from 2015 to 2017
  • Member of IBR – Instituto Brasileiro de Estudos de Recuperações de Empresas
  • Member of the Study Commission of Bankruptcy and Reorganization (Comissão de Direito Falimentar a Recuperacional) of IASP – Instituto dos Advogados de São Paulo.
  • Recognized at International Financial Law Review (IFLR)’s Americas Awards 2019, Global M&A Network’s 11th Annual Turnaround Atlas Awards and Latin Lawyer’s Deal of the Year Awards for advising on the Oi restructuring deal.
  • Recognized at Leaders League Brazil Best Counsel 2018 as Recommended and Highly Recommended in Bankruptcy and Litigation areas, in 2018 and 2019.
  • "He represents creditors and fights for their interests in a very forceful manner." - Chambers Latin America, ed. 2019
  • "Leonardo Morato, who is best known for insolvency expertise, but also does broader civil litigation too." Chambers Latin America 2018 - Litigation
  • "strong dedication to cases, significant legal knowledge and hands-on approach." Chambers Latin America 2018
  • "competes ferociously in proposals" Chambers Latin America 2017 - Bankruptcy
  • "very eloquent, clear and patient" Chambers Latin America 2017 - Bankruptcy
  • "experience, knowledge of the market and ability to explain Brazilian law and the most complicated cases to multinational banks" Chambers Latin America 2017 - Bankruptcy
  • "Tauil & Chequer now has a strong and busy restructuring practice after a large-scale lateral hire in early 2014" Latin Lawyer 250 2016 - Restructuring & Bankruptcy
  • "Litigation specialist with a notable track record" The Legal 500 2016 - Bankruptcy
  • "Morato is best known for insolvency expertise but also does broader civil litigation too." Latin Lawyer 250 2016 - Litigation
  • "tactical litigator" The Legal 500 2015 - Tax
  • Chambers & Partners Latin America - Bankruptcy/Restructuring - 2012, 2013, 2014
  • PLC Which Lawyer? Bankruptcy/Restructuring - 2012, 2013
  • INSOL International - 2013
  • Legal 500, Latin America - Bankruptcy and Restructuring - 2013