Westlaw News

Grab's record $40 bln blank-check deal keeps law firm quartet busy

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom and Hughes Hubbard & Reed are advising Grab Holdings Inc, the largest ride-hailing and food delivery firm in Southeast Asia, in its merger with special purpose acquisition company Altimeter Growth Corp. The deal, announced Monday, is set to be the biggest SPAC merger ever, valuing the company at $40 billion.

Ropes & Gray is advising Altimeter, while Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr is representing Altimeter Capital Management and Altimeter Capital Markets.

The record-breaking transaction comes as the momentum for SPACs has refused to slow, providing nonstop work for law firms that have latched on to the blank-check IPO pipeline. According to data from Refinitiv, there have been 121 SPAC deals announced so far this year, compared to 16 during the same time in 2020.

Skadden’s Hong Kong and Singapore-based team advising Grab is led by M&A partners Jonathan Stone and Rajeev Duggal.

Other members of the team include corporate partners Andrew Cohn, Zachary Levine, In Ho Kim, Arthur Chan, Michael Marietta and Crystal Kim; regulatory partners Steve Kwok, Michael Leiter and Eytan Fisch in Hong Kong and Washington, D.C.; antitrust partner Andrew Foster; tax partner Victor Hollender in New York; Securities and Exchange Commission compliance partners Brian Breheny and Raquel Fox and of counsel Andrew Brady in Washington, D.C.

Duggal previously worked with Grab when his client JPMorgan Chase & Co served as the leading bookrunner closing the delivery app’s first senior secured term loan facility earlier this year. Skadden also advised Grab in 2019 when it was in talks to merge with OVO, an Indonesian digital payments firm.

The Hughes Hubbard team is led by Ken Lefkowitz and Gerold Niggemann. Lefkowitz has represented Grab on a number of matters including the company’s $2 billion funding round in 2017, its $1 billion stake sale to Toyota Motor Corp in 2018 and its acquisition of Uber’s Southeast Asia business the same year.

M&A partner Paul Scrivano and counsel Sarah Davis are leading Ropes & Gray’s deal team. The firm advised Altimeter Growth on its $500 million initial public offering.

The WilmerHale team advising Altimeter Capital Management and Altimeter Capital Markets includes investment management partners Leonard Pierce and Timothy Silva; corporate partners Glenn Pollner and David Westenberg; and investment management senior counsel Phillip Gillespie and counsel Seth Davis.

As part of Singapore-based Grab’s agreement with the Altimeter SPAC, investors such as Temasek Holdings Ltd, BlackRock Inc, Fidelity International Ltd, Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Investment Co and Malaysia’s Permodalan Nasional Bhd will participate in a $4 billion private investment in public equity offering.

Funds managed by Altimeter Capital will lead the investment with $750 million.

The deal is expected to close this year.