Freshfields, US duo advise on €4.2bn debt restructure for Germany’s IVG

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Kirkland & Ellis and Kaye Scholer are advising on the multi-billion debt restructuring of German real estate group IVG Immobilien, expected to be the largest such case in the country this year.

Lars Westpfahl
Lars Westpfahl

The Bonn-based company had amassed debt of €4.2bn (£3.6bn) as of 31 March and is working on restructuring it with lenders and bondholders.

Two sets of bondholders have instructed Kaye Scholer and Luther, while the company is being advised by a Freshfields team led by Hamburg partner Lars Westpfahl and Frankfurt partner Jochen Wilkens.

Investors in IVG’s €400m (£343m) 1.75 per cent unsecured convertible 2017 notes, reportedly comprising mostly hedge funds based in London and New York, instructed a Kaye Scholer team headed by London and Frankfurt restructuring partner David von Saucken, who led a pitch against three other firms in early May. He was joined on the deal by London partner Paul Atherton and associate Tanyel Serpemen.

Another group of bondholders, reportedly buyers of a €400m 8 per cent unsecured perpetual hybrid notes, have turned to German independent Luther.

Meanwhile, the ad hoc committee of creditors including Cerberus, Marathon and Varde Partners is being advised by Kirkland, with Munich restructuring partners Leo Planck and Sacha Lürken leading. Linklaters partner Kolja von Bismarck is also advising the creditors, according the German legal website JuVe.

Background to this deal:

Freshfields is a longstanding adviser to IVG, while Kaye Scholer’s successful pitch came after von Saucken worked with members of the investor group at the firm and prior to leaving Ashurst in 2011.