ABP adds Slaughters to panel for Goldman takeover bid

Slaughter and May has strengthened its corporate ties with Associated British Ports (ABP), with the firm all set to advise ABP on a possible bid by a consortium led by Goldman Sachs.

The investment bank has confirmed that it has been working on a potential bid with Canadian and Singaporean investors, that could value the British Ports group at more than £2bn.

ABP’s general counsel Andrew Garner said Slaughter and May had been appointed to the company’s panel as corporate advisers and would be asked to act if a bid presented itself.

Slaughter and May corporate financing partner Richard de Carle is the relationship partner for ABP.

ABP, the UK’s biggest ports operator, has opened its doors to a takeover bid and requested the consortium put its intentions in writing before talks can begin.

Goldman Sachs has indicated it is looking for a recommended offer. The investment bank uses a number of firms including Linklaters, Clifford Chance and Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy. Goldman Sachs declined to comment.

Another buyer thought to be interested in ABP is Hong Kong conglomerate Cheung Kong Infrstructure Holdings which is owned by Hutchison Whampoa – a lonstanding client of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer.

If a bid materialises, it will be the first major corporate deal ABP’s general counsel Andrew Garner has worked on since taking up the new role in October last year.