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Even though a $1 billion investment in a brand-new Bermuda insurance company was handled by Valley lawyers, it was not a standard Valley deal. Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom represented a group of investors led by Fremont Partners, a San Francisco private equity firm, on a huge investment in Ironshore Inc., a new catastrophic insurance business. The large group of investors, including Bear Stearns Merchant Banking, Corporate Partners, TowerBrook Capital Partners and Greenhill Capital Partners, made for an unusual transaction. “In Silicon Valley, you rarely see a large group of major banks and private equity funds come together to put these kinds of dollars toward a new company,” said Leif King, the Skadden corporate partner in Palo Alto who advised on the deal. “It was an exceptional amount of work,” said King, who completed the deal from his in-laws’ home in Atlanta over the holidays. The workload was especially heavy because all the parties involved had to agree on the terms of the deal and because the terms had to be in line with foreign laws � the parent company is located in the Cayman Islands and the insurance company is located in Bermuda. “All of the shareholder rights and corporate governance rules are run by Cayman law and since we’re representing investors, they’re keenly interested in how they’ll be able to control their investment post-closing,” King said. “We would have huge conference calls with 30 or 40 representatives from various parties on the line.” Fremont Partners is a longtime Skadden client, but early on in the negotiations the whole group decided Skadden would serve its joint purpose. “The consortium thought it would make the most sense to have one counsel for all of the investors,” King said. The Skadden team also included corporate partner Kenton King (no relation to Leif King), also from the Palo Alto office; Los Angeles employee and benefits partner Michael Lawson; plus New York partners specializing in labor and employment, corporate law, banking and taxes; and a Boston investment management partner. Ironshore was represented by New York-based Cahill Gordon & Reindel.

Zusha Elinson

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