Asset management giant The Carlyle Group is being advised by longtime outside counsel Latham & Watkins on the sale of commercial flight systems company Arinc to defense contractor Rockwell Collins.

The $1.39 billion deal, announced Sunday, is the largest-ever acquisition by Rockwell Collins, which specializes in making aviation electronics and communications equipment for military and commercial aircraft.
Carlyle, which initially acquired Annapolis-based Arinc in 2007 from a group of six U.S. airlines for an undisclosed sum, cancelled a previous plan to unload the portfolio company in 2010 after failing to find a buyer willing to put up the $1 billion purchase price.
David Brown, the cochair of Latham’s private equity practice, is currently leading a team from the firm advising Carlyle on its exit from Arinc that includes tax partner David Raab, employee benefits partner David Della Rocca, antitrust partner Marc Williamson, and associates Marc Granger, Adam Kestenbaum, Eugene Kim, and Sydney Smith.
Jeffrey Ferguson, a former Latham associate, serves as managing director and general counsel for Carlyle, whose cofounder and co-CEO David Rubenstein once worked at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison and a predecessor firm of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman. Reuters reported earlier this year that each of Carlyle's three founders received $57.6 million in 2012.
Former Latham partner and executive committee member Bruce Rosenblum is a managing director at Carlyle, where he also serves as a member of the operating committee for the Washington, D.C.–based private equity firm, which recently posted $155.8 million in quarterly profits.
Carlyle has also recently been reducing its stake in Valencia, California–based aerospace parts supplier Wesco Aircraft Holdings, which recently inked a contract to supply European aircraft manufacturing giant Airbus. When Wesco went public in 2011, it was Latham that advised the company on its $315 million initial public offering. (While Latham has been a go-to firm for Carlyle, it was Simpson Thacher & Bartlett that picked up the work for the asset manager’s $671 million IPO last year.)
Cedar Rapids, Iowa–based Rockwell Collins has tapped Chadbourne & Parke for deal counsel on its acquisition of Arinc from Carlyle. Steptoe & Johnson partner Edward Schwartz is serving as antitrust counsel to Rockwell Collins, whose general counsel is Gary Chadick. Arinc’s general counsel is John “Jack” Smith.
U.S. Senate records show that Arinc has paid $45,000 to The Artemis Group for lobbying work through the first half of 2013. Rockwell Collins has spent $429,426 during that same time on its own lobbying efforts led by former acting Federal Aviation Administration administer-turned-senior vice president of Washington operations Robert Sturgell, senior director of government relations Timothy Peterson, director of government relations Megan Rosia, and government relations professional Laurie Bertenthal, according to Senate filings.
Rockwell Collins hopes to finalize its purchase of Arinc within 90 days, pending regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.