Mayer Brown handles new client Green Property sale

Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw may be selling off one of its newest clients as it advises Green Property on the sale of its UK portfolio to Burford Holdings.
It is the first major deal that Mayer Brown has handled for the Irish property company since Peter Sugden brought it with him when he joined the firm from Manches last October.
Lehman Brothers-backed Burford Holdings, advised by Clifford Chance, is thought to be paying around £600m for the portfolio.
The work for Green Property has, in recent years, been jointly shared by Sugden and Olswang property head Tim Westhead. It is thought that Westhead won the client from now defunct firm Forsyte Saunders Kerman, and was doing most of the client’s work. However, when Sugden, a former Forsyte lawyer, became a partner at Manches, he won some of the work back.
What will happen to further work from the portfolio once the deal is completed is unknown, but Burford is understood to have very strong ties with its regular adviser Clifford Chance.
Green Property is well known to both Lehman Brothers and to Clifford Chance. The magic circle firm acted for Rodinheights, the investment vehicle backed by Merrill Lynch and Royal Bank of Scotland that was used by Green Property chief executive Stephen Vernon to take the company private in August last year. On that deal, Green Property was represented by its regular Irish adviser Arthur Cox.
Lehman Brothers backed fellow Irish property company Treasury Holdings on its bid for Green Property last year. Although Treasury tabled a higher bid than Rodinheights, the deal between the two parties fell through.
Clifford Chance and Mayer Brown declined to comment. Olswang did not return The Lawyer’s calls.