Top-tier firms help fund $4.6bn deal

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Herbert Smith Freehills (HSF) and King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) have lent their legal expertise as an Australian engineering services giant funds a billion-dollar acquisition in the US.

HSF confirmed to Australasian Lawyer that they advised WorleyParsons on the company’s $2.9bn pro rata accelerated non-renounceable entitlement offer (ANREO) of new ordinary shares to existing shareholders.

KWM acted for the joint lead managers of the raising, which is intended to help fund the Sydney-based company’s $4.6bn acquisition of the energy, resources, and chemicals business of US-based Jacobs Engineering.

HSF’s deal team included partners Philippa Stone and Philip Hart; solicitors Christian Bourke, Elizabeth Cameron, Lucinda Bradshaw, and Daniel Stathis; and graduate Shananne Joyce from the firm’s equity capital markets team. The ECM team was supported by senior associate Garth Riddell from the firm’s head office advisory team. Partner Siddhartha Sivaramakrishnan and senior associate Jin Kong from the firm’s US capital markets team also provided expert advice.

The KWM team consisted of partner David Friedlander, special counsel Amanda Isouard and solicitor Gemma McMahon.

Friedlander said that KWM has repeatedly acted for lead managers on WorleyParsons’ major equity raisings. The top-tier firm previously acted on WorleyParsons’ $322m ANREO in 2017, as well as other capital raisings in the last decade.

The new deal is transformative for WorleyParsons, Friedlander said.