Allen & Overy wins US Ex-Im Bank’s 2013 Deal of the Year award for ABS-2 Satellite

Allen & Overy has been presented with the 2013 Deal of the Year award by the Export-Import Bank of the US (US Ex-Im) at the bank’s 39th Annual Conference in Washington DC. 

The firm advised US Ex-Im as lender in the $471m (£280m) debt financing to Kingsbridge, the holding company of Asia Broadcast Satellite’s (ABS’s) group of operating companies, for the procurement, construction, launch and operation of three new satellites.

Bermuda’s Kingsbridge, the head of company of ABS Group, signed the three-tranche credit facility, worth $471m, with a tenor of 12.5 + 8.5 years with US Ex-Im and achieved financial close in February 2014.

According to Allen & Overy, the hybrid corporate and project financing structure features a unique part-export refinancing feature for an existing $215m bank loan as well as a substantial new capex financing, allowing the company to fund construction, launch and insurance of three new-built satellites into a single long-term committed debt package.

With a security package spanning across multiple jurisdictions, including the US, Bermuda, Singapore, Hong Kong, Indonesia, the UK and the Philippines, the innovative financing offers a number of firsts.

The transaction was the first time US Ex-Im had supported launch services from SpaceX, the world’s first privately held launch services provider, and the first time the ECA had supported Boeing’s new 702SP all-electric propulsion satellite platform. The ABS deal will support approximately 3,700 high-tech jobs in the US.

The core Allen & Overy team was led by projects partner Kent Rowey (New York), with support from New York projects partner Dolly Mirchandani and associates Claire Watson, Andrew Lin, Derek Poon and Molly Watters.

The transaction was also awarded 2013 Trade Finance Deal of the Year by Trade Finance Magazine.