HFW advises Nordea Bank on US$750 million facility for Euronav
A team of HFW lawyers in London and Paris, led by London ship finance Partner John Forrester, has advised Nordea Bank Norge ASA as facility agent on a US$750 million senior secured facility for Belgian and New York listed tanker owner Euronav NV.
The deal involves a syndicate of 11 lenders led by Nordea Bank Norge ASA and DNB Bank ASA as mandated lead arrangers, bookrunners and co-ordinators with ABN AMRO Bank N.V., ING Bank N.V. and Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken AB (publ) as other mandated lead arrangers. Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank acted as lead arranger and KBC Bank NV, Scotiabank Europe plc and Societe Generale acted as co-arrangers. The other lenders were Belfius Bank NV/SA and HSBC Bank plc.
The facility will be used to refinance Euronav's remaining debt in respect of 21 vessels, finance four newbuilding VLCCs recently acquired by the company, and also for Euronav's general corporate and working capital purposes.
The security package at initial drawdown included ship mortgages over 21 of the wholly-owned vessels in Euronav's fleet, comprising 1 ULCC, 6 VLCCs and 14 Suezmaxes, and will include a ship mortgage over each new VLCC as and when they are delivered. The vessels are registered variously in France, Belgium and Greece. HFW Paris advised on the French mortgages. Advice on Belgian law and Greek law was provided respectively by Fransen Luyten and Theo V. Sioufas & Co. Advice was also taken on Norwegian law from BA-HR in respect of security over bank accounts in Norway. Euronav was represented by its own in-house legal team.
The HFW team consisted of John Forrester (Partner), Katherine Noble (Associate) and Guy Robson (Associate) in London and Jean-Marc Zampa (Partner) and Serge Rastorgoueff (Associate) in Paris.