April 7 Puerto Rico's Government Development Bank, the U.S. commonwealth's financing arm, has hired Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, a New York-based law firm with a specialist practice in financial restructuring, the firm and bank said on Monday.
Cleary Gottlieb is the second restructuring expert retained by the development bank in the past month. In March, just days before a $3.5 billion bond sale that helped the island avert a looming cash crunch, the bank hired Millco Advisors LP, a Washington-based affiliate of the firm Millstein & Co.
"As fiscal agent to the Commonwealth and its instrumentalities, the GDB regularly solicits advice and counsel from a number of legal and financial advisors with respect to financing plans and other related matters," a bank spokesperson said. "Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP were engaged by the GDB as part of these ongoing efforts. As is customary, GDB does not comment on the nature or content of any legal advice."
The Cleary Gottlieb hiring was first reported by the Wall Street Journal. A spokesman for the firm confirmed it had been hired by Puerto Rico but declined to provide any other details. (Reporting by Luciana Lopez and Edward Krudy; Writing by Dan Burns; Editing by Jonathan Oatis)