Changes in the economy over recent years have presented significant challenges and opportunities in the global structured finance market. With the return to economic growth, the experiences learned during the credit crisis have enabled the market to develop new financing arrangements and structures to take account of constantly evolving circumstances.
New issuance volumes are increasing and the post-crisis securitisation environment enjoys increasing political and regulatory support, particularly for "high quality" transactions which are "simple, transparent and standardised". There is increased recognition at the highest levels in government that banks and real economy borrowers alike will benefit from the liquidity and funding advantages of a well-functioning securitisation market.
Alongside new issuance, a significant part of our activity over the last few years has related to non - or under-performing assets, affecting all types of structured and securitised transactions. We have advised on the restructuring and unwinding of existing transactions, in addition to dealing with the consequences of rating downgrades, defaults and disputes arising under transaction documents. We have also advised purchasers and sellers of loan and property portfolios, and the related financings, which have arisen out of bank deleveraging programmes.
Our current practice focuses on the next generation of structured finance arrangements. Most recently, we have advised on publicly and privately placed commercial and residential mortgage-backed financing arrangements. We also regularly advise on how the implementation of new regulation impacts upon structured finance transactions and on the amendments to transactions that may need to be undertaken.
We consistently work for a broad range of participants in structured finance transactions, including investors, issuers, originators, account banks, swap providers, liquidity providers, trustees, arrangers and asset managers. Our experience means we have an extensive understanding of issues that may affect market participants. We advise on a wide range of structured finance transactions, including RMBS, CMBS (both cash and synthetic), other ABS, CDOs and CLOs. We cover multiple jurisdictions, including the UK, Europe, the USA and Canada.
We pride ourselves on our expertise in developing innovative approaches to traditional structured finance transactions. For new transactions, we can help ensure that clients take advantage of the most sophisticated and up-to-date structures available.
Legal 500 UK 2014 describes our securitisation and structured finance team as ‘responsive, knowledgeable and commercial'.
Notable deals / highlights
Advising a leading UK building society on a £650m public RMBS transaction.
Advising an SPV note issuer in connection with the establishment of two privately placed warehouse RMBS with a total value of £340 m.
- Acting for a trustee on a note default, noteholder consent solicitation process and underlying asset sale for a USD90 m corporate note transaction.
- Advising the holder of credit-linked notes on the defence and ultimate settlement of a USD 90m claim brought by a Lehman entity over its entitlement to collateral securing the notes.
- Acting for a global investment bank as swap provider on a series of auto loan ABS issuances, including on the engagement of a fronting swap provider into the structure on a back-to-back basis due to credit rating issues.
- Acting for SPV note issuers on the implication of rating downgrades in respect to asset-backed transactions totalling more than £10 bn in aggregate.
- Acting for a building society in relation to its issuance of tier 2 capital.