Debt finance

Overview

Our debt finance team is strategically positioned to focus on the finance needs of Australian corporate borrowers.

We are unique in having top tier finance capability without the constraints imposed through panel relationships with Australia’s major trading banks. While bank panel commitments can give rise to conflicts of interest which may affect the willingness of panel firms to act assertively in commercial negotiations with banks, we are not constrained by:

  • contractual or commercial restrictions on acting against banks in contentious or potentially contentious matters
  • having previously advised banks to insist on or reject particular facility provisions, or
  • a bank-centric view of market practice.

Our clients include significant entities listed on the ASX or other major international stock exchanges, as well as large private or unlisted companies and trusts. The breadth of our borrower focussed practice ensures we are cognisant of current market practices and the expectations of major lenders.

Highly professional, diligent and practical in their approach.
Chambers Asia-Pacific

Our clients include significant entities listed on the ASX or other major international stock exchanges, as well as large private or unlisted companies and trusts. The breadth of our borrower focussed practice ensures we are cognisant of current market practices and the expectations of major lenders.

Our experience covers the full spectrum of debt finance work, including:

  • bilateral and syndicated bank debt facilities
  • debt capital markets
  • project and infrastructure finance
  • property finance
  • leveraged and acquisition finance
  • securitisation and structured products
  • derivatives
  • receivables financing
  • convertible and hybrid securities
  • restructuring, insolvency and workouts.

We are experienced in major bank debt and capital markets raisings in the Australian, US and European markets, and have strong relationships with leading firms in those jurisdictions.

In workouts and restructurings, our debt finance partners work closely with our specialist insolvency and restructuring partners to provide an integrated, cross-disciplinary team with the full range of skills which may be required.

Experience

Recent matters

ALE Property Group

Advising on its A$335 million Australian Medium Term Note Program, involving the issue by the ALE Direct Property Trust (a wholly owned subsidiary of ALE Property Group) of unsecured notes, while leaving in place an outstanding tranche of long dated, secured commercial mortgaged back securities under ALE’s CMBS program.

Arrium

Advising on its senior debt and hedging facilities, including various interest rate and commodities trading hedges, and advice and documentation for Arrium’s senior debt facilities.

Australian Gas Networks (AGN)

Acted for AGN on all aspects of its $1.9 billion secured debt program, which includes credit wrapped notes, MTN’s, syndicated and bilateral facilities and FX and interest rate hedging.

Beach Energy

Acted for Beach Energy and its subsidiaries on its recent A$320 million refinancing, including due diligence and the negotiation of all facility and security documentation.

McAleese

Advised on the restructuring of the McAleese Group’s financing structure in connection with its IPO involving a move from a private equity style leveraged finance facility to a A$325 million syndicated, secured multi-option facility appropriate for an entity listed on ASX.

Recognition

David Beckett, Jim Hunwick, Matthew Allchurch and Man Loi are recommended in Banking and Finance law.
Asia Pacific Legal 500, 2018
Matthew Allchurch and Jim Hunwick are ranked as leading lawyers in Banking & Finance: Corporate Finance law.
Chambers Asia-Pacific, 2018
David Beckett is ranked as a leading lawyer in Banking & Finance: Acquisition Finance law.
Chambers Asia-Pacific, 2018
David Beckett and Craig Wappett are listed as leading lawyers in Project Finance & Development Practice.
Best Lawyers Australia, 2019
Matthew Allchurch is listed as a leading lawyer in Debt Capital Markets Law.
Best Lawyers Australia, 2019
Matthew Allchurch and David Beckett are listed as leading lawyers in Structured Finance Law.
Best Lawyers Australia, 2019
David Beckett, Jim Hunwick, Deborah Overstead and Craig Wappett are listed as leading lawyers in Banking & Finance.
Best Lawyers Australia, 2019
"The firm has exceptional capabilities in the loan refinancings sphere. I think, overall, Johnson Winter & Slattery were very professional and assisted us to achieve a highly unlikely but very desired outcome. I was very impressed with the quality of their advice and service."
Chambers Asia-Pacific, 2017
David Beckett is praised by clients for his "experience and wealth of technical knowledge" as well as his ability to "verbalise complicated technical issues and convey them in an easily digestible manner."
Chambers Asia-Pacific, 2017
Matthew Allchurch is singled out by clients for being "outstandingly knowledgeable, extremely personable and a great negotiator." Clients also appreciate his "hands-on approach" and his "commercial acumen."
Chambers Asia-Pacific, 2017
Clients note that financing is Jim Hunwick's "bread and butter" and that he is "very measured and able to help us reach an acceptable position when handling difficult counterparties."
Chambers Asia-Pacific, 2017
"Exceptional expertise in acting for borrower clients."
Asia Pacific Legal 500, 2016
"They've been great and have met all our expectations. Their fantastic consistency and depth of knowledge have allowed us to work with them as if they were in-house."
Chambers Asia-Pacific, 2015

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