Latham hire makes mark on European aerospace transaction

Private equity star Graeme Sloan has completed his biggest deal to date since joining Latham & Watkins in May.

Sloan, who joined Latham from Maclay Murray & Spens, was part of the Latham team advising on the E2.57bn (£1.73bn) sale of aerospace engine-maker Avio to Cinven.

The sale is Europe’s largest-ever aerospace deal and Italy’s biggest-ever single-fund private equity transaction.

Sloan worked alongside London corporate partner Michael Immordino, who led the Latham team advising The Carlyle Group, which owns 70 per cent of Avio.

Italian defence group Finmeccanica, which was advised in-house, sold the remaining 30 per cent for E430m (£289.85m). As part of the deal Finmeccanica has agreed to reinvest in Avio alongside Cinven.

Latham has a longstanding relationship with Carlyle, and advised the private equity house when it first acquired its 70 per cent stake in Avio from Fiat in 2003.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer advised UK private equity house Cinven, the buyers in the current deal, led by London corporate partner David Sonter. This is Cinven’s first acquisition in Italy since opening in Milan earlier this year.

Freshfields has advised Cinven for more than a decade, including on Cinven’s E4.3bn (£2.9bn) acquisition of air-flight booking system Amadeus in July 2005.

Chiomenti Studio Legale advised Carlyle on Italian law.

Bonelli Erede Pappalardo advised Cinven on Italian corporate law and Gianni Origoni Grippo & Partners advised on Italian financial law.