More than a year has elapsed since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has had a devastating impact on our economy. Due to the extraordinary measures of the Hungarian government to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, numerous services were suspended, many shops were closed, and travel is still restricted. Companies affected by these restrictions suffered huge losses, which may result in their insolvency.
Schoenherr has advised Ventus LLC and Sky Logistica on the acquisition of Skyport, a cargo operator based in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, from the Czechoslovak Group, a.s.. In a parallel transaction, Schoenherr also advised Elite Partners Capital on the acquisition of the Skyport RE cargo property company from the Czechoslovak Group. Dentons advised the Czechoslovak Group on the parallel deals.
Unsurprisingly, 2020 saw a reduction in the A-listers on the Bulgarian real estate market, including investors in office, retail, and hospitality properties. The lockdown sent IT companies, which had been dictating the local office space market, into home office. The future of commercial and entertainment properties like shopping malls, cinemas, concert venues, and sports arenas remains uncertain – but tourism remains the hardest hit.
Schoenherr has advised Twisto FinCo s.r.o. and Twisto payments a.s. on its EUR 25 million debt refinancing, including a senior stream provided by J&T Banka of approximately EUR 17.3 million and a mezzanine stream provided jointly by Orbit Capital and Growth Finance of approximately EUR 7.7 million). Kocian Solc Balastik represented J&T Banka and CMS advising Orbit Capital and Growth Finance.
On 4 May, the detailed debate has been closed in the Hungarian Parliament in relation to the legislative proposal, which aims to implement Directive 2019/1023, also known as the restructuring directive, providing debtors with a pre-insolvency tool to rescue their viable but struggling enterprises. Restructuring proceedings fill a gap in the Hungarian legal environment and may also help enterprises recover financially from the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Schoenherr has advised Raiffeisen Bank International as arranger on a true sale securitization of a EUR 538 million portfolio of vehicle leasing receivables by Raiffeisen Leasing Group. Clifford Chance advised RBI on German law aspects of the transaction, and anchor investors, which include the European Investment Bank and the European Investment Fund, were advised by Linklaters and Binder Groesswang.
In December 2020 the Higher Administrative Court issued an interesting ruling regarding the party status of environmental organisations (EOs). Until now, the scope of EOs' participation rights in Austrian nature conservation proceedings was unclear. The court's ruling clarifies that EOs' party status is to be interpreted broadly.
Binder Groesswang and White & Case advised Verbund AG on their issuance of innovative green and sustainability-linked notes with a volume of EUR 500 million. Schoenherr and Linklaters advised BofA Securities and J.P. Morgan in their capacities as joint ESG structuring agents and joint bookrunners, as well as Erste Group, Morgan Stanley, and Societe Generale in their capacities as Joint Bookrunners.