This is reportedly the first mining project financing in Russia to be funded by commercial banks and not solely by multilateral lenders.
Mayer Brown & Platt acted for the lenders and lead arrangers after winning the work advising Standard Bank London back in 1996. Now an established client relationship for the office, this was the first deal the firm was instructed on after the South African bank moved into London four years ago.
Office managing partner and mining and project finance specialist Ian Coles led the deal along with three associates in London – Michael Pabst, Sally Mills and Morgan Carroll. The project was hit by the Russian crisis and then a crisis about the price of gold and did not really get off the ground until the end of last year.
The $40m (£27.8m) syndicated project financing in the Magadan region of eastern Siberia was also the first Russian mining project loan guaranteed by political risk insurance from the World Bank’s Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency.
Since starting the deal, the London office has worked on gold mining projects for Standard Bank London in Ghana and Uruguay, and the firm has picked up more mining instructions from Bayerische Hypo und Vereinsbank AG, which only came in as lender on the deal late last year.