Bakers ally seals $200m Egyptian PPP deal

Baker & McKenzie alliance firm Helmy Hamza and Partners secured the lead role acting for the ­sponsor on the first ­Egyptian public private partnership (PPP) to reach financial close.

M&A partner Mohamad Talaat advised Orasqualia on the $200m (£133.73m) New Cairo waste water treatment plant, which reached financial close last month.

Cairo firm Zulficar & Partners advised the group of banks acting as lenders to the project, headed by CIB and Société Générale. The Zulficar team was led by founding partner Mona Zulficar.
The Orasqualia consortium that landed the 20-year contract comprises Egyptian contractor Orascom Construction Industries (OCI) and Spanish contractor Aqualia.

The project is one of a number of pilot PPPs under development in Egypt and marks a significant step in the modernisation of the country’s infrastructure.

Talaat said: “It’s a landmark deal for the ­country as it’s the first to close and we hope that ­others will follow. It’s ­essential for the government as this is the way they want to continue to develop the country.”

The London office of ­Bakers also has experience of working in the Egyptian market, last year advising on the establishment of a $100m turnaround fund in the country.

The fund, run by Sphinx Private Equity, secured investment from the European Investment Bank (EIB), the International Finance ­Corporation (IFC) and Citadel Capital (The Lawyer, 27 April 2009).