Private Equity

Ever since its beginnings in the late 1990s, Gilbert + Tobin has been at the forefront of developments with private equity and financial sponsors. We have deep experience dealing with the key issues that drive financial sponsors’ businesses: funds management and fiduciary concerns; a dominant focus on cash and efficient capital structures; financial and operational leverage; close working relationships with portfolio company managers and superior transaction execution. In the structures, advice, diligence and agreements we prepare, we maintain a clear focus on these key commercial issues.

Regarded as one of the leading advisers to private equity funds and other financial buyers and funds managers in Australia, our team has been involved in many of the market-shaping private equity transactions in Australia in the last 10 years.

Our team works seamlessly with regulated M&A experts to help solve complex public to private transactions as well as our banking & finance experts who look at the strategic and financial needs of our clients. We bring disciplined, effective and experienced management to large structured deals, while remaining flexible and open to novel opportunities.

Our services

  • Providing highly developed governing documents and advising on the establishment of private equity, infrastructure and other funds.
  • Advising Limited Partners on investments in Australian funds (and relevant offshore parallel fund vehicles).
  • Negotiating and documenting a range of investment transactions and subsequent divestment transactions (LBOs, MBOs, trade sales, mergers or floats). We have particular expertise in follow-on transactions and the legal and commercial issues they raise, including where follow-on investment comes from different funds within the financial sponsor’s franchise.
  • Acting for both financial sponsors and lending banks on leveraged acquisitions and leveraged joint ventures.
  • Advising the boards of portfolio companies, sponsors and banks on recapitalisations and refinancings of leveraged transactions.
  • Advising on the full range of public market transactions including PIPES, P2Ps and joint ventures with publicly listed companies.
  • Structuring Management Equity Plans.
  • Foreign investment advice and clearances.
  • Providing best of breed, market-accepted transaction documentation.
  • Undertaking vendor and acquisition legal due diligence with a focus on financial sponsor’s issues including the range of issues of typical concern for acquisition financiers.

Our experience 

Our experience includes advising:

  • BGH Capital Consortium (including BGH, AustralianSuper, GIC, OTPP, CPPIB) on its proposed $2.3 billion acquisition of Navitas by scheme of arrangement.
  • KKR on the $2 billion takeover of MYOB Limited.
  • TPG Capital on its $1 billion (enterprise value) acquisition of Greencross Limited.
  • Pacific Equity Partners on the $950 million sale of Allied Pinnacle to Nisshin Seifun Group.
  • Carlyle International Energy Partners on Australian aspects of the acquisition of the EnerMech Group.
  • Harbour Energy on its $14.4 billion proposed acquisition of Santos Limited.
  • CHAMP Private Equity on its $1 billion sale of Accolade Wines.
  • Quadrant Private Equity on its $1 billion sale of the Real Pet Food Co.
  • Pemba Capital Partners on the approximately $700 million sale of Device Technologies to Navis Capital Partners.
  • Blackstone Investa Commercial Property Fund on the $3.35 billion battle for the ASX listed Investa Office Fund between Oxford Properties & Blackstone.
  • Graincorp on the $3.3 billion (enterprise value) approach by Long Term Asset Partners.
  • LifeHealthcare Group Limited on the acquisition by Pacific Health Supplies BidCo Pty Limited (an entity wholly-owned by funds managed or advised by Pacific Equity Partners) by way of a scheme of arrangement.
  • Blackstone on the acquisition (as part of a consortium including Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and GIC) of a controlling interest in a new entity housing the Financial and Risk business in JV with the previous owner Thomson Reuters, at an overall valuation of US$20 billion.
  • Platinum Equity on the Australian aspects of its US$2.5 billion acquisition of Multi-Colour Corporation.
  • Crescent Capital Partners on its acquisition of the Viridian Glass group from CSR Limited.
Awards and Recognition
  • Best Lawyers 2020 named us Law Firm of the Year for Private Equity Law and for Corporate Law.
  • Gilbert + Tobin's Private Equity team is ranked Band 1 by Chambers Asia-Pacific 2019.

I have enjoyed nothing but first-class service and outcomes from Gilbert + Tobin in the private equity space; the entire team has significant depth and quality.

Chambers Asia-Pacific, 2019