Australia/New Zealand

King & Wood Mallesons and Allens are advising on a proposed $820 million copper and gold mining deal in Australia. British-Australian mining giant Rio Tinto Group has agreed to sell its 80 percent stake in Northparkes, a copper and gold project located in New South Wales, to China Molybdenum Co. Ltd. The Henan-based company is one of the world’s largest producers of steel-making ingredients such as molybdenum and tungsten. King & Wood Mallesons Beijing partner Susan Ning and Sydney Paul Schroder are acting for the buyer. Allens Sydney partners Richard Malcolmson and Richard Kriedemann are representing Rio Tinto. [ Read full story]
Chapman Tripp has the lead role on the expected $726 million initial public offering of New Zealand oil company Z Energy Ltd. Wellington partner Geof Shirtcliffe is leading the firm's team on the deal. Minter Ellison Wellington partners Paul Foley, Patricia Green, and Rachel Devine are also advising on New Zealand law issues. Minter Ellison Sydney partner Michael Barr-David is serving as counsel on Australian law matters and the proposed Australian Securities Exchange listing. Belly Gully is acting for arrangers First NZ Capital Group Ltd., Goldman Sachs New Zealand Ltd., Craigs Investment Partners Ltd. Deutsche Bank AG, and Forsyth Barr Ltd. [ Read full story]
DLA Piper is representing U.S. car dealer Penske Automotive Group Inc. on its proposed $203 million acquisition of Western Star Trucks Australia from Australian Transpacific Industries Group Ltd., the country’s largest waste-management company. Western Star primarily distributes heavy and medium-duty trucks through a network of 81 dealers across Australia and New Zealand. The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter. DLA Piper's team includes Brisbane partner Jim Holding, Leeds partner John Gallon, and London partner Alexander Griffith. Ashurst Sydney partner Phil Breden is acting for the seller.

Southeast Asia

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Baker & McKenzie have the lead roles on Meiji Yasuda Life Insurance Co.’s proposed $715 million purchase of a 15 percent stake in Thai Life Insurance Pcl. Meiji Yasuda, one of Japan’s largest life insurers, said it is buying the stake in order to capture the demand for insurance from Thailand’s growing middle class. Freshfields Tokyo partners Junzaburo Kiuchi and Ed Cole are acting for Meiji Yasuda. Richmond, Virginia–based Hunton & Williams’s team in Bangkok is advising the Japanese insurer on Thai law. Baker & McKenzie is representing Thai Life, with the firm’s team being led by Bangkok partners Sorachon Boonsong and Preeda Meksrisuwan. [ Read full story]
Ali Budiardjo Nugroho Reksodiputro Jakarta partner Freddy Karyadi is acting for French tire maker Compagnie Financière Groupe Michelin on its $435 million joint venture with Indonesia’s PT Petrokimia Butadiene Indonesia to build and operate a synthetic rubber plant. The latter company, which is a subsidiary of PT Chandra Asri Petrochemical Tbk, produces butadiene, a key ingredient in making synthetic rubber. The joint venture will be 55 percent owned by Michelin, with the plant operational by early 2017. Assegaf Hamzah & Partners is advising PT Petrokimia Butadiene Indonesia.
Allen & Gledhill has advised Keppel Land Ltd. on the sale of its 51 percent interest in Jakarta Garden City to its joint venture partner, PT Modernland Realty Tbk, for $228 million. The joint venture had been formed in 2004 to develop the city, a 270-hectare residential and commercial real estate project located in East Jakarta. To date, 93 percent of the homes and shophouses in Jakarta Garden City have been sold. Partner Penny Goh acted for Keppel Land Ltd. Singaporean firm Wong Tan & Molly Lim is acting for Modernland Realty.
Hadiputranto, Hadinoto & Partners, a member firm of Baker & McKenzie in Indonesia, advised oil and gas company PT Apexindo Pratama Duta Tbk on a proposed relisting of its stock on the Indonesian Stock Exchange. The public offering is expected to raise $132 million. Jakarta partner Indah Respati is leading the advisory team. Underwriters and their counsel were not available at press time.

Singapore

Allen & Gledhill advised real estate company Overseas Union Enterprise Ltd. on the $476 million initial public offering of its OUE Hospitality Trust. The parent company operates a chain of hotels in Singapore, Malaysia, and China, and used part of the proceeds to pay for its acquisition of luxury hotel Mandarin Orchard Singapore and shopping complex Mandarin Gallery. Partners Jerry Koh, Ho Kin San, and Chua Bor Jern led the Allen & Gledhill team. Allen & Overy and Singaporean firm TSMP Law Corp. acted for underwriters Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, Standard Chartered Bank, Merrill Lynch, Deutsche Bank, and Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp. Ltd. on U.S. and local law, respectively.
Rajah & Tann and WongPartnership are advising on the $157 million take-private of Armstrong Industrial Corp. Ltd., a Singaporean foam and rubber component manufacturer/., by AGP Asia Holding Pte. Ltd. AGP is a special investment vehicle created by Gilbert Investment Corp. Pte. Ltd. and Polyfoam Asia Pte. Ltd., which will hold 65 percent and 35 percent of shares in Armstrong, respectively. WongPartnership partners Andrew Ang and Kenneth Leong are acting for AGP. Polyfoam has also instructed Rajah & Tann partners Evelyn Wee and Lorena Pang. Singaporean firm Tan Peng Chin is representing Armstrong.
WongPartnership represented oil exploration company Rex International Holding Ltd. on its $85 million initial public offering on the Singapore Exchange. The company plans to use the money in order to fund active drilling in the Middle East and Norway, as well as fund new projects. Partner Pong Chen Yih led the WongPartnership team. Arntzen de Besche Advokatfirma A acted as Norwegian counsel and Pepper Hamilton as U.S. counsel. Appleby also advised the company on British Virgin Islands law, led by Hong Kong partner Jeffrey Kirk.
Rajah & Tann partner Howard Cheam acted for Tosei Corp., a Tokyo-based real estate developer, in raising $26 million through a private placement on the Singapore Exchange. The company is using the funds raised in order to purchase new properties and land, as well as upgrade some of its current real estate holdings. Mori Hamada & Matsumoto acted as Japanese counsel for Tosei. Underwriter Daiwa Capital Markets Singapore Ltd did not retain a legal adviser for the placement.

Hong Kong/China

Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson advised a consortium of investors in the delisting of Hong Kong–based gemstone jeweler LJ International Inc. from the Nasdaq stock exchange for $64 million. The buyer group includes LJ International chief executive Yu Chuan Yih and other private equity investors. Hong Kong partners Doug Freeman and Victor Chen led the Fried Frank team, with Conyers Dill & Pearman Hong Kong partner David Lamb advising on British Virgin Islands law. Sidley Austin Shanghai partner Joseph Chan advised Yu Chuan Yih on U.S. law. Colorado-based firm Andrew Bernstein and Beijing-based Han Kun Law Offices advised LJ International on U.S. and Chinese law, respectively. Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld represented LJ International’s board of directors on U.S. law, led by Hong Kong partners Greg Puff and Zach Wittenberg. Maples and Calder advised the board on British Virgin Islands law.
Robertsons advised television and film production company ChinaVision Media Group on a $34.4 million share placement in Hong Kong. The money is being raised to fund general working capital. Herbert Smith Freehills Hong Kong partners Matt Emsley, Kevin Roy, and Michelle Chan acted for placing agent Goldman Sachs.

India

Khaitan & Co. Mumbai partner Shishir Mehta represented a group of lenders including the State Bank of India on a $108 million loan to conglomerate Aditya Birla Group. The company operates in the telecommunications, financial services, mining, retail, and power sectors, among others. The money will be used to expand Aditya Birla’s chain of supermarkets and department stores in India. The conglomerate did not retain counsel for the transaction.
Amarchand & Mangaldas & Suresh A. Shroff Co. acted for the Ministry of Mines on its 4 percent stake sale in state-owned India copper producer Hindustan Copper Ltd. for $42.8 million. New Delhi partner Prashant Gupta led the Amarchand team. Axis Capital Ltd., ICICI Securities Ltd., Kotak Securities Ltd., SBICAP Securities Ltd., and UBS Securities India Private Ltd. were appointed as brokers, which did not have legal representation on the deal. Amarchand had previously acted for the government when it raised $145 million from the sale of a 5.6 percent stake in Hindustan Copper last November.
Email: qleung@alm.com.