"His flexibility and imagination were key factors in the success of the transactions."Chambers Latin America
Christopher has built an active practice representing sponsors and financial institutions in corporate financings, project financings, and other financing and restructuring transactions. Christopher also has significant experience in representing buyers, sellers, and financing parties in acquisition and divestiture transactions.
Christopher’s experience includes a broad range of financing structures, including those provided by commercial banks, multilateral agencies, export and other official creditors, and capital markets (through 144A/Reg S issuances as well as traditional private placements). Christopher’s practice includes a particular emphasis on energy and infrastructure-related work – having advised on the financing, development, and restructuring of more than 10,000 MW of conventional and renewable power generation and groundbreaking transactions in water and transport sectors. His experience within the power sector includes generation, transmission and distribution, and he frequently provides counsel on a broad array of other infrastructure and industrial matters, including rigs, LNG facilities, gas pipelines, water treatment facilities, toll roads, port infrastructure, and manufacturing facilities.
Christopher has extensive experience in Latin America, where his fluency in Portuguese and Spanish, in addition to English, enables him to negotiate and review contracts in all three languages. He has represented clients in several of the most innovative and noteworthy transactions in the region, having led more than a dozen “Deals of the Year” and having led transactions in the United States, Brazil, Mexico, Chile, Peru, Colombia, Argentina, the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and elsewhere around the globe.
Law 360 has named Christopher as an MVP in the Project Finance category in 2012, 2014 and 2016—the only lawyer so recognized three times. Upon his being awarded the honor in 2014, the publication cited him for “establishing himself once more as the go-to Latin America lawyer” with his work on three recent “highly complex” infrastructure deals in Latin America. Chambers Global notes that Christopher is a “detail-oriented attorney who excels at structuring his way around problems, and is a nice guy to work with.” He is also highlighted by Chambers Latin America 2018 as one of the leading lawyers in Latin America, where he “represents both borrowers and lenders in project financings, with additional expertise in M&A transactions related to infrastructure projects.” The publication notes that he is held in high esteem by clients, with one particularly highlighting that his he has a “detail-oriented approach and ability to deal simultaneously with many complicated issues and many different parties.” Christopher is also a finalist for the American Lawyer’s 2018 Legal Services Innovation Award. The Legal 500 includes Christopher as one of the ten leading individuals in Latin American project finance and Latin Lawyer 250 names Christopher as a key project finance practitioner. Christopher has also been listed among the top international trade and finance lawyers in The Best Lawyers in America, The International Who's Who of Project Finance Lawyers, The International Who's Who of Business Lawyers and the Project Finance section of the Guide to the World's Leading Banking Finance and Transactional.
- Represented a consortium in connection with a bid for the PPP contract of six road corridors in Argentina under the country’s “Safe Highways and Roads Network” program.
- Represented a leading European infrastructure company in connection with the proposed financing of a Paraguayan PPP water project with a publicly reported capital cost of some US$600 million.
- Represented a group of leading U.S. institutional investors as noteholders in connection with the 4(a)(2) private placement by Campo Palomas Finance, Ltd. of US$136 million in 5.33% Senior Notes due 2036. The proceeds of this green bond were applied to fund a B loan participation through Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC) to refinance the 70 MW Campo Palomas wind farm and associated transmission line infrastructure in Uruguay. Named 2017 Project Finance Deal of the Year, Bonds & Loans Latin America.
- Represented Celeo Redes Operación Chile S.A. in connection with the issuance of dollar-denominated and local currency-denominated notes to finance electricity transmission projects and circuit lines, either in operation or under construction. This was the first portfolio project bond in Chile, the first time for simultaneous non-insured project bond issuances in the 144A/Reg S market and in the registered local bond market; and the transaction with the longest tenor of any project bond ever issued in Latin America. Named Latin America Refinancing Deal of the Year 2017 by IJ Global, Best Power Financing, Best Bond and Best Infrastructure Financing (Andes), LatinFinance 2017.
- Represented Interchile S.A. as borrower on a senior secured loan arranged by a club international banks and a VAT facility arranged by Chilean banks. The project comprises the design, construction, development, ownership and operation of several transmission lines in the Central Interconnected Grid (SIC) and the Northern Interconnected Grid (SING) of Chile and has a publicly reported estimated project cost of US$1.3 billion. This transaction was named Best Power Deal 2016 by LatinFinance.
- Represented Goldman, Sachs & Co., BBVA, Credicorp Capital and Banco de Crédito del Peru as underwriters and loan arrangers on the mixed senior secured bond and senior secured loan for the US$1 billion Rutas de Lima project, a public-private partnership (PPP) toll road project in Lima, Peru. The project comprises the maintenance, expansion and operation of 98 kilometers of existing roads and the construction, operation and maintenance of 19 kilometers of new roads, intended to reduce traffic congestion and increase efficiency of the commercial exchange among Lima, the port of Callao and provinces located to the north, center and south of Peru. The transaction was awarded a Project & Infrastructure Finance Deal of the Year Award 2015 by Latin Finance magazine and was named PPP Deal of the Year by World Finance magazine. It represents one of the largest and most sophisticated project financings in 2014, as it combines financing from commercial banks as well as funding from local and international investors in a Rule 144A/Regulation S project bond and is the largest Peruvian-currency financing to date for any non-sovereign debtor.
- Represented Corporación Andina de Fomento in its capacity as subordinated lender in each of the Marcona and Tres Hermanas financings, and represented an institutional investor in two additional subordinated loan facilities for those same projects. These complex financings involved export credit agencies, multilateral agencies, a bilateral agency and, now, institutional investor funds for what is—at 129.25 MW—now Peru's largest wind farm by installed capacity. This transaction was named Best Renewable Energy Financing 2015 by LatinFinance magazine.
- Represented BNP Paribas Securities Corp. and another leading bank as underwriters on the US$432 million issuance of a senior secured project bond by Abengoa Transmisión Sur (ATS). The project comprises the design, construction, development, ownership and operation of a transmission line that will provide power connectivity from Lima to south-western Peru. The ATS project spans 885 kilometers—more than half the length of the country—and is a fundamental part of the Peruvian government’s plan to increase the reliability of the national electric grid. For that project, we first represented lenders in the mini-financing which provided the construction period financing that ultimately led to the successful project bond refinancing. This project bond is significant because it represents one of the very few international placements of a project bond for a Latin American project and the first to be issued with a 29-year tenor. The bond is the largest dollar-denominated project bond ever issued for a Peruvian project. This transaction was named the 2014 Americas Bond Deal of the Year by Project Finance International (PFI) as part of the publication’s annual PFI Awards, which recognize deal innovation, best practice, problem solving, risk mitigation, value for money and speed of delivery in the financing of infrastructure projects.
- Represented the arranger, commercial bank lenders and placement agent in the US$527.2 million financing for the construction of the Vía Parque Rímac (formerly known as Línea Amarilla) toll road in Lima, Peru. This mixed project bond and commercial bank financing represented, prior to the Rutas de Lima project, the largest Peruvian-currency financing to date for any non-sovereign debtor. This transaction was named Project Finance’s Latin America PPP Deal of the Year 2012 and Americas Capital Markets Tax Deal of the Year—High Yield Issuance at the 2013 Americas Tax Awards.
- Represented Acciona in the US$148.5 million 144A/Reg S project bond financing of the Oaxaca II wind power project and the US$150.2 million 144A/Reg S project bond financing of the Oaxaca IV wind power project in Mexico. These were two of the first Latin American project bonds to receive international investment grade ratings. These transactions were named as the Latin America Project Bond Deal of the Year 2012 by Project Finance magazine and Best Renewable Energy Financing 2013 by Latin Finance magazine.
- Represented the structuring banks in the US$700 million, 300 MW Nuevo Pemex cogeneration facility in Tabasco, Mexico being constructed by Spanish infrastructure company Abengoa in partnership with GE. This facility is the first of a planned series of nine similar cogeneration projects to be developed to provide electricity to Pemex. This transaction was named Latin America Power Deal of the Year 2010 and Overall Latin America Deal of the Year 2010 by Project Finance magazine.
- Represented a leading international energy company in connection with the financing of the GNL Quintero Project, a major LNG facility in Chile and the subsequent expansion of the project. Named Americas Oil and Gas Deal of the Year for 2008by Project Finance International and 2008 Latin American Oil & Gas Deal of the Year by Project Finance magazine.
- Represented NRG Energy in the two-stage acquisition of a majority stake in a Brazilian company that owned the Itiquira Hydroelectric Project, an approximately 150 MW hydroelectric generation facility then in construction and in its subsequent US$280 million disposition of that stake; in connection with this mandate, assisted the acquirer in restructuring the shareholder arrangements and multiple financing and refinancing transactions. Named Project Finance’s 2008 Latin American Renewables Deal of the Year.
- Represented the arrangers and lenders in the US$990 million financing of the 750 MW La Yesca Hydroelectric Project in Mexico (and subsequent additional facilities in excess of US$200 million); this transaction was named Americas Power Deal of the Year for 2007 by Project Finance International and is the largest financing to date in the Mexican power sector. The underlying contract with the national utility company is a Pidiregas transaction, which served as one of the models for the construction agreement for this Project.
- Represented the arranger and lenders in US$100 million bridge and the US$680 million mixed bank and project bond construction financing for the 750 MW El Cajón Hydroelectric Project in Mexico; this transaction had been the largest financing to date in the Mexican power sector and was named Latin American Deal of the Year for 2004 by Project Finance International and Latin America Renewables Deal of the Year for 2004 by Project Finance. Like La Yesca, the underlying contract with the national utility company is a Pidiregas transaction, which served as one of the models for the construction agreement for this Project.
- Advised a multilateral lender in connection with its first partial risk guarantee, issued in connection with US$100 million capital market financing of a wastewater facility in Bogota, Colombia. Named Deal of the Year by both Project Finance International and Project Finance.
- Represented the lender in the project financing of the Mayakan Pipeline, an approximately 700 kilometer natural gas pipeline that was Mexico’s first privately owned gas pipeline. Named Deal of the Year by Institutional Investor.
- Represented a multilateral lender in the project financing of the Aguaytia Project, an integrated natural gas and merchant generation facility and the related 400 km transmission line that was Latin America’s first project financing of a greenfield merchant plant. Named Deal of the Year by both Project Finance International and Project Finance.
Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar
Oglethorpe University, BA, magna cum laude