Clifford Chance joins roster of US firms on Securitas financing

A raft of US firms lined up alongside Clifford Chance to advise on a €393.5m mezzanine loan issued by Swedish alarm maker Securitas Direct to fund its buyout by two private equity houses.

The financing, the largest European mezzanine loan of 2011, replaces an unsecured high-yield bridge loan from six banks including lead arranger Morgan Stanley as well as Goldman Sachs and Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

In the latest financing, Ropes & Gray acted for the five mezzanine lenders, which include MezzVest and Partners Group. The team consisted of London co-managing partner Maurice Allen and partners Tania Bedi and Jonathan Bloom.

Clifford Chance fielded a finance team led by senior partner Malcolm Sweeting and associate Lorraine Vaz advising the six-bank consortium on English law matters. Clifford Chance partner Charles Cochrane also advised.

US firm Cravath Swaine & Moore gave high-yield financing advice to the same arrangers, with a team led by London managing partner Philip Boeckman.

Kirkland & Ellis advised sponsors Bain and Hellman & Friedman. Latham & Watkins is among firms that have previously acted for Hellman & Friedman on financing, but Kirkland won the role through its longstanding relationship with Bain and snatched the latest financing instruction without the need for a competitive tender.

The deal was led by Kirkland finance partner Neel Sachdev as well as high-yield partner Ward McKimm, who joined the firm from Shearman & Sterling earlier this year.

Hellman & Friedman Europe general counsel Stuart Banks advised in-house, as did Bain European general counsel Bart Gombert.

Bain Capital and Hellman & Friedman acquired Securitas Direct from EQT in June for SEK21 (£2.04m). Bain and Hellman & Friedman were advised by Kirkland & Ellis London partners Sam Pakbaz, Ross Allardice and James Learner on the deal, while EQT turned to White & Case partner Ulf Johansson in Stockholm and senior associate Tuula Tallavaara (4 July 2011).