Azul Brazilian Airlines at Curitiba Airport (CWB) in Brazil.
Azul Brazilian Airlines at Curitiba Airport (CWB) in Brazil. (Photo: Mariordo Mario Roberto Duran Ortiz via Wikimedia Commons)

The once-booming Brazilian economy has fallen on hard times in recent years, but green shoots are starting to emerge, hinting at a potential rebound by the South American nation.

A long-dormant market for initial public offerings in Brazil began to revive earlier this year, and The New York Times reported last month on several companies from the country planning future floats in the U.S. Two of those companies went public this week, raising nearly $800 million in a pair of listings that generated millions in attorney fees.

Azul Linhas Aéreas Brasileiras SA, a Brazilian airline started in 1998 by David Neeleman, the São Paulo-born founder of JetBlue Airways Corp., raised $645 million this week through a dual listing on the New York Stock Exchange and São Paulo. Former Clifford Chance associate Joanna Portella succeeded Renato Covelo in December as general counsel for Azul.

Shearman & Sterling capital markets partner Stuart Fleischmann in New York and Brazilian firm Pinheiro Neto Advogados are advising Azul on its IPO, which has generated $1.63 million in legal fees and expenses, according to securities filings. Shearman & Sterling also represented underwriters back in 2002 on JetBlue’s IPO, a landmark listing in the U.S. aviation industry that securities filings show yielded $600,000 in legal fees for the Long Island City, New York-based airline’s lawyers at now-defunct Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison.

J. Mathias von Bernuth, a former capital markets partner at Shearman & Sterling partner who in 2013 defected from the firm’s São Paulo office to head the local arm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, is leading a team from the latter advising underwriters on Azul’s IPO. Skadden corporate finance partner Filipe Areno and Brazil’s Lefosse Advogados, which once had a cooperation agreement with Magic Circle firm Linklaters, are also working on the matter for underwriters, a group that includes Citigroup Inc., Deutsche Bank AG, JPMorgan Chase & Co. and several Brazilian financial services firms.

Also taking the plunge into the public markets this week is São Paulo-based NetShoes Ltd. The e-commerce company, a leading beauty, fashion and shoe retailer popular throughout Latin America, raised $148.5 million via an IPO on the NYSE.

S. Todd Crider, co-head of Simpson Thacher & Bartlett’s office São Paulo, is working with fellow corporate partner Grenfel Calheiros in advising NetShoes on its listing. Leading Brazilian firm Mattos Filho, Veiga Filho, Marrey Jr. e Quiroga Advogados and Cayman Islands firm Campbells are also representing NetShoes on its IPO, whose legal fees and expenses are estimated at $2 million, according to securities filings. Flavio Franco serves as NetShoes’ in-house legal chief.

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton capital markets partners Nicolas Grabar and Francesca Odell are working with Pinheiro Neto in counseling underwriters on the IPO led by The Goldman Sachs Group Inc., JPMorgan Chase, Banco Bradesco BBI SA, Jefferies LLC and Allen & Co. LLC.

Brazil, currently coping with an ongoing political corruption scandal, could see other large companies tap the public markets in future months. Reuters reported this week that Votorantim Metais Holdings SA, one of the largest producers of base metals in Latin America, is considering an IPO. The company is part of the São Paulo-based Votorantim industrial conglomerate, which saw its cement unit postpone a previous listing back in 2013.

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The once-booming Brazilian economy has fallen on hard times in recent years, but green shoots are starting to emerge, hinting at a potential rebound by the South American nation.

A long-dormant market for initial public offerings in Brazil began to revive earlier this year, and The New York Times reported last month on several companies from the country planning future floats in the U.S. Two of those companies went public this week, raising nearly $800 million in a pair of listings that generated millions in attorney fees.

Azul Linhas Aéreas Brasileiras SA, a Brazilian airline started in 1998 by David Neeleman, the São Paulo-born founder of JetBlue Airways Corp. , raised $645 million this week through a dual listing on the New York Stock Exchange and São Paulo. Former Clifford Chance associate Joanna Portella succeeded Renato Covelo in December as general counsel for Azul.

Shearman & Sterling capital markets partner Stuart Fleischmann in New York and Brazilian firm Pinheiro Neto Advogados are advising Azul on its IPO, which has generated $1.63 million in legal fees and expenses, according to securities filings. Shearman & Sterling also represented underwriters back in 2002 on JetBlue’s IPO, a landmark listing in the U.S. aviation industry that securities filings show yielded $600,000 in legal fees for the Long Island City, New York-based airline’s lawyers at now-defunct Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison.

J. Mathias von Bernuth, a former capital markets partner at Shearman & Sterling partner who in 2013 defected from the firm’s São Paulo office to head the local arm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom , is leading a team from the latter advising underwriters on Azul’s IPO. Skadden corporate finance partner Filipe Areno and Brazil’s Lefosse Advogados, which once had a cooperation agreement with Magic Circle firm Linklaters , are also working on the matter for underwriters, a group that includes Citigroup Inc. , Deutsche Bank AG , JPMorgan Chase & Co. and several Brazilian financial services firms.

Also taking the plunge into the public markets this week is São Paulo-based NetShoes Ltd. The e-commerce company, a leading beauty, fashion and shoe retailer popular throughout Latin America, raised $148.5 million via an IPO on the NYSE.

S. Todd Crider, co-head of Simpson Thacher & Bartlett ’s office São Paulo, is working with fellow corporate partner Grenfel Calheiros in advising NetShoes on its listing. Leading Brazilian firm Mattos Filho, Veiga Filho, Marrey Jr. e Quiroga Advogados and Cayman Islands firm Campbells are also representing NetShoes on its IPO, whose legal fees and expenses are estimated at $2 million, according to securities filings. Flavio Franco serves as NetShoes’ in-house legal chief.

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton capital markets partners Nicolas Grabar and Francesca Odell are working with Pinheiro Neto in counseling underwriters on the IPO led by The Goldman Sachs Group Inc. , JPMorgan Chase , Banco Bradesco BBI SA, Jefferies LLC and Allen & Co. LLC.

Brazil, currently coping with an ongoing political corruption scandal, could see other large companies tap the public markets in future months. Reuters reported this week that Votorantim Metais Holdings SA, one of the largest producers of base metals in Latin America, is considering an IPO. The company is part of the São Paulo-based Votorantim industrial conglomerate, which saw its cement unit postpone a previous listing back in 2013.

Copyright The American Lawyer. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.