Chile

Reviews

Practice area

IFLR1000 Reviews

Overview

Competition authority: National Economic Prosecutor & Tribunal for the Defense of Free Competition

Financial regulator: Superintendency of Securities and Insurance (SVS) 

IFLR1000 ranking categories in this jurisdiction: 

Banking, Capital markets, M&A, Project development

Jurisdiction overview

Chile’s legal system is derived from the Civil law model. The Chilean Civil Code was enacted in December 1855 and put into practice January 1857.

Lawyers in Chile are licensed by the supreme court. Lawyers can be a part of the Colegio de Abogados de Chile. Foreign lawyers cannot practise Chilean law, but they can advise on public international law. Foreign lawyers do not need to register in Chile. Foreign lawyers do have the option of re-qualifying in order to practice Chilean law.

Some global firms such as Baker & McKenzie have a presence in Chile, but the market is mainly populated with local firms some of whom have an international presence through networks and alliances.  

In January 2015, the market saw its first international merger when Chilean firm Philippi Yrarrázaval Pulido & Brunner and Colombian firm Prietocarrizosa, in association with Iberian law firm Uría Menéndez merged to create Philippi Prietocarrizosa & Uría. 

Financial and corporate
Barros & Errázuriz Abogados

Strong in all areas of work covered by the rankings, Barros & Errázuriz Abogados is particularly well known for its transactional work in the energy and infrastructure space. In addition to work in this sector, the firm works across industries including agribusiness (including fisheries) and healthcare.

In the research period the firm was active for clients in the bond markets where most its work was for issuers.

Banking and finance partner Gonzalo Molina retired.

Recent Deal Data highlights

•                      Agrosuper $850 million acquisition of Aquachile

•                      Cerro Dominador 210 MW photovoltaic power plant

•                      CMPC $126 million 1.77% and $210 million 2.55% inflation-linked bond issue

•                      Inmobiliaria Manquehue Santiago Stock Exchange IPO

•                      Marubeni and Toesca $300 million acquisition of GasValpo

Client feedback

“A law firm with talented senior associates and partners.” -  Capital markets: debt

“Excellent advice and good delivery.” – Capital markets: debt

“The firm has been capable of understanding our sector and providing accurate, tailor-made documents to appeal to the market and protect the company.” – Capital markets: debt

“Very good work. Technically high-level advice. Always ready to solve problems and negotiate difficult clauses with the counterpart.”  - M&A

“Absolutely perfect, from negotiation to execution.” – M&A

“We’d highly evaluate the firm for its due diligence support, preparation and negotiation of the finance contract and daily advice for local legal activities.”  - Project finance

“The firm has a wide range of resources and is efficient.” – Real estate

Francisco de la Barra

“Francisco de la Barra personally committed to the project. Was always available, and showed good knowledge of the construction industry.”

“High evaluation of the knowledge, experience and support to develop all the matter we need for project financing and other relates topics.”

Victor Barros

“Expert in his field and willing to go the extra mile for the client.”

Pablo Guerrero

“Smart, business oriented, and practical. Absolutely outstanding.’

Luis Alberto Letelier

“[A strength was the] knowledge of the Chilean capital markets.”

Emilio Vazquez

“He is very good and thorough and knows how to marshal the right resources to get the job done.”

Bofill Mir & Alvarez Jana Abogados

Bofill Mir & Álvarez Jana Abogados is especially strong in the financing, M&A and development of mining projects, though also active in other industries as well.

Recently, in addition to its work in mining, the firm has also worked on transmission line, wind power and desalination projects.

Recent Deal Data highlights

•Clínica Las Condes $140 million 3.95% notes issue

•EMR Capital acquisition of Cerro Colorado mine 

•Enjoy $46 million financing 

•Patria Investment $35 million acquisition of Grupo O Dos

•Sociedad de Inversiones Pampa Calichera $275 million 4.5% inflation-linked bonds issue

 

Carey

As the largest firm in Chile, Carey can often be seen on the leading banking, capital markets, M&A and project deals in the market.

During the research period the firm’s banking team advised on a mix of corporate, project and acquisition finance, working for both borrowers and lenders.

The M&A team has advised on some particularly notable deals in the banking, energy and healthcare sectors recently.

Recent Deal Data highlights

•                      Bank of Nova Scotia $2.2 billion acquisition of BBVA Chile

•                      BCI $150 million acquisition of Walmart Chile’s financial services and credit card business

•                      Cencosud $100 million financing

•                      Falabella $550 secondary share offer

•                      Transelec Concesiones 2x220 kV and 2x500 kV transmission lines

Cariola Díez Pérez-Cotapos & Cía

Cariola Díez Pérez-Cotapos & Cía has a leading M&A practice and has strong financing and project development teams.

The firm works across various sectors but has seen a few notable deals in the fisheries industry this research period.

Recent Deal Data highlights

•                      Accor and Algeciras $365 million acquisition of Atton Hoteles

•                      AquaChile $225 million acquisition of Aquaculture Services Acuimag and Pesquera Edén

•                      ATCO $340 million acquisition of Neltume Ports

•                      Central Hidroeléctrica Digua 20MW hydropower plant

•                      Joyvio Group $880 million acquisition of Australis Seafoods

Claro & Cia

Claro & Cia is a leading local firm and is top of the market for banking, M&A and capital markets.  

Renewable energy has been a particularly active sector for the firm’s banking team this research period.

The firm’s capital markets team advises clients on both debt and equity issues, and most deals over the research period saw it advising issuers.

Recent Deal Data highlights

•                      AES Gener $250 million financing

•                      Mallplaza Santiago Stock Exchange IPO

•                      Tianqi Lithium $5.2 billion acquisition of 32% stake in Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile

•                      Turner International Latin America $1.2 billion acquisition of Canal del Fútbol

•                      Vial Rutas del Loa toll road concession

Client feedback

“Best law firm in Chile.” – M&A

 “Great knowledge of the local market. Relevant law firm in the country. Pro-business.” – Project finance

“Detailed, well known, experienced, analytical.” – Project finance

“This law firm is very competent in project finance and finding solutions making finance viable.” – Project finance

Garrigues

Garrigues is best known for its banking and capital markets practices. The firm’s banking team tends to advise lenders and the firm maintains relationships with local and international banks. The firm’s capital markets team advises a mix of underwriters and issuers.

The firm advises on M&A deals in a range of sectors but energy, mining and telecommunications have been particularly active this research period. 

During the research period the firm hired Jaime de Larraechea as partner in its banking and M&A practices.

Recent Deal Data highlights

•                      Accor and Algeciras $365 million acquisition of Atton Hoteles

•                      Caitan desalination plant and pipeline

•                      EDF Energy and Andes Mining & Energy $300 million acquisition of  Sociedad Eléctrica Santiago

•                      ENAP $680 million 5.26% bond issue

•                      Sociedad de Inversiones Pampa Calichera $275 million 4.5% inflation-linked bond issue

Client feedback

“As to strengths, Garrigues' managing partner, Pedro Garcia, is one of the most hands-on and experienced lawyers in the Chilean market. In terms of weaknesses, I think the junior team needs further experience.” – Capital markets: debt

“Excellent work. Deep understanding of legal elements, but also of business implications.“ – M&A

“Very good. In-depth knowledge, client oriented.” – M&A

Guerrero Olivos

Guerrero Olivos is a strong finance and M&A firm.

The firm’s banking team has been active on syndicated loan, acquisition financing and refinancing deals in the research period. Energy and mining have been active sectors for the firm’s M&A team, and it has also worked on deals in the automotive, education and retail sectors.

Recent Deal Data highlights

•                      Algorta Norte $71 million financing

•                      Caja de Compensación de Asignación Familiar La Araucana $557 million financial restructuring

•                      China Southern Power Grid $1.3 billion acquisition of 27.8% stake in Transelec

•                      Mitsui acquisition of minority stake in Inversiones Mitta

•                      Tianqi Lithium Corporation acquisition of 23.7% stake in  Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile

Client feedback

“They have a very high professional knowledge and the necessary flexibility for closing an M&A transaction.” – M&A

They were very rigorous in the different topics related to the transaction, due diligence, etc. They were very efficient inmeeting our requirements.” – Project development

Larraín & Asociados

Larraín & Asociados is known for its financing, M&A and project development work in the energy and infrastructure sectors.

Enjoy, a casino operator, generated a lot of work for the firm this research period – many of its banking deals involved advising banks on granting financing to Enjoy. The banking team was also active on road financing.

Many of the firm’s recent M&A deals took place in the energy and mining sectors, but the firm also worked in the retail and agribusiness sectors.

Recently the project development team advised clients on bidding for tenders, EPC agreements, and on regulatory issues related to highways, transmission lines, and energy projects.

Recent Deal Data highlights

•                      Américo Vespucio Oriente toll road

•                      Costa Verde Aeronáutica $74 million financing

•                      Enjoy $46 million financing              

•                      Hospital del Salvador concession

•                      Punta del Cobre/Pacífico V Región merger

Morales & Besa

Morales & Besa is broadly strong in all areas of financial and corporate work.

The firm is a leader in the sovereign capital markets space and advises the Republic of Chile on its bond issues, of which there have been a number recently.

Renewable energy has been a particularly active area for the firm’s projects team in the research period, but the firm has also worked in sectors including healthcare and aviation.

Partner Matias Langevin left the firm over the research period.

Recent Deal Data highlights

•                      Cerro Dominador 210MW photovoltaic power plant (EIG Global Energy Partners)

•                      Mallplaza SSE IPO (JP Morgan Securities, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs)

•                      Marubeni and Toesca $110 million acquisition of Aguas Chañar (Aguas Chañar)

•                      Republic of Chile $1.41 billion 3.5% sovereign green bond issue (Republic of Chile)

•                     Salmones Austral $100 million refinancing (DNB Bank, Robofinance Chile)

Philippi Prietocarrizosa Ferrero DU & Uría

Philippi Prietocarrizosa Ferrero DU & Uría is a go-to firm for a variety of transactional and projects matters.

The firm represents a host of international banks as lenders or underwriters, and the capital markets team frequently advises the underwriters on the Republic of Chile’s sovereign bond issues.

The M&A team works in a range of sectors, including energy, mining and real estate, and has seen a couple of notable deals in the banking and financial services sectors recently. 

Recent Deal Data highlights

•                      Bank of Nova Scotia $2.2 billion acquisition of BBVA Chile

•                      BCI $150 million acquisition of Walmart Chile’s financial services and credit card business

•                      Codelco $300 million credit facility

•                      Red Electrica $117 million acquisition of Centinela Transmisión

•                      Republic of Chile $1.41 billion 3.5% sovereign green bond issue

 

Client feedback

“Extremely professional with a team of very good, highly skilled lawyers led by Marcelo Armas.” – Banking

“Excellent work. High standard.” – Banking

“Excellent knowledge of local implications of international issuances. Strong team.” – Capital markets: debt

“Firm was excellent, lead counsel was a results-based problem solver.” – M&A

“Focused, committed and experienced.” – M&A

Carlos Alberto Reyes

“Excellent. Very detailed and results based.”

Marcelo Armas

“Excellent knowledge of local and international aspects of these transactions. Very good access to international firms, highly respected and reputed, not only himself but his team.”

“The best. Highly skilled, has deep knowledge is and influential.”

Alberto Pulido

“Great client service and creative problem solving.”