Energy & Natural Resources - Chile
THE FIRM This celebrated firm provides legal advice to a wide range of clients in connection with all areas of natural resources. The team recently represented Origin Energy as it acquired a 51% stake in Energía Austral from Xstrata Copper, assisting with a due diligence report as well as with the deal negotiations. The firm also advised Hydrowac y Cía on the sale of a call option to acquire key water rights and other related assets to Cedicor.
Sources say: "We chose them because they give us personalised attention, are quick to respond and know the energy field extremely well."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Juan Francisco Mackenna is singled out by sources for his strong negotiating skills and long-standing experience in the hydropower field.
Clients laud Alberto Cardemil for his high level of expertise in water rights, adding: "He is a great adviser with strong business acumen."
Associate José Miguel Bustamante "is experienced and well informed, and has a strong understanding of the sector," according to sources.
Partner María Fernanda Carvajal "is efficient and dedicated to her clients, and has impressive knowledge of her field," according to clients. She co-heads the firm's coal, oil and gas practice.
THE FIRM The pre-eminent energy team at this acclaimed Chilean firm provides clients with comprehensive advice on energy, oil, gas and water matters. The firm recently acted for First Solar in connection with the US company's acquisition of local power developer Solar Chile. The team benefits from the support of the firm's broad pool of experts in the corporate, litigation and financing arenas.
Sources say: "The firm has intricate knowledge of the local energy market as well as expertise in related areas such as project development and environmental law."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Sources praise financing expert Rodrigo Ochagavía for his capabilities in the corporate arena and for his intelligent and agile working manner.
Clients single out respected litigator Nicolás Luco for his in-depth knowledge of the electricity field.
THE FIRM This renowned practice benefits from the firm's broad experience in the projects, corporate and financing arenas to provide a comprehensive legal service for energy matters. The team routinely assists clients with a wide range of queries spanning concessions and bidding processes, funding, project development and M&A. The firm is also well placed to represent clients in related litigation and arbitration proceedings.
Sources say: "This is clearly a top firm for energy matters and one that always bargains hard to protect the interests of its clients."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Department head Jorge Granic attracts strong praise from clients: "He is an extraordinary lawyer and knows the area extremely well." Peers also comment on his collaborative approach to negotiations.
Of counsel Ricardo Peña is an "intelligent and experienced energy specialist," according to sources.
THE FIRM This acclaimed corporate firm serves a high-profile client roster in connection with its energy needs, and has a strong name in the local market for its expert advice on power purchase agreements, EPC contracts and construction contracts. The team is regularly instructed by Colbún, Repsol and Goldcorp, and recently acted for GDF SUEZ with respect to an LNG terminal user agreement with major mining companies such as BHP Billiton, Codelco and Minera Elabra. The team has also represented Spanish oil company Repsol in the cross-border sale of Repsol Butano Chile for USD540 million.
Sources say: "The firm really stands out for its knowledge of the power, water and gas markets, as well as its support in related areas such as corporate, labour, disputes and tax."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Key partner Jaime Ríos "is straightforward and has the ability to see the big picture when discussing a case," according to clients.
Sources are full of praise for lead partner Juan Tagle: "He is committed to understanding our problems in depth and his client service is excellent."
Founding partner Claudio Undurraga is hailed by clients as an extraordinary lawyer who understands technical problems and the impact that legal options may have on their business.
THE FIRM This boutique firm is well placed to assist clients with the full catalogue of corporate, tax, environmental and litigation needs stemming from their energy projects in Chile. The energy practice has Sun Edison, Transelec and Andes Generación among its clients, and recently represented AES Gener in the drafting, negotiation and management of a number of EPC contracts relating to its local thermoelectric power plants. Clients consider the firm's compact size to be key to its rapid and personalised client care.
Sources say: "The firm offers an excellent service in terms of the quality and depth to its advice and its ability to meet deadlines."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Sources laud head of department Ignacio Arteaga for his "quick reactions, knowledge of the sector and flexibility to adapt to the client's needs."
Key partner Luciano Cruz comes recommended by clients for his pragmatic approach and transactional know-how. Sources note his particular strength in EPC contracts.
THE FIRM The energy and natural resources practice at this full-service firm assists clients with a wide range of needs stemming from their local projects in this area. It has a strong focus on the corporate and financing aspects of conventional and renewable energy operations, but is also regularly instructed in connection with related infrastructure concessions and EPC contracts. Representative clients to date include HydroChile, BCI, BBVA and Solarpack, and the team recently advised Solairedirect on a power purchase agreement with gold mining company Compañía Minera Dayton. Clients praise the firm's commercial outlook and its ability to meet deadlines.
Sources say: "They are experts in energy and EPC contracts, and are very knowledgeable of the area as a whole."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Sources highlight partner Pedro García as "smart and solution-driven," adding that he maintains a close relationship with his clients.
Associate and energy specialist Sebastián Leyton "stays on the pulse," according to clients, who also note his strong technical background.
THE FIRM This boutique firm has solid expertise in the energy and water fields which is complemented by its distinguished name in mining matters. Representative clients include Antofagasta Minerals, BHP Billiton and HydroChile, with the firm providing permanent legal counsel to the latter on energy and water matters relating to its hydroelectric projects in Chile. The firm is also well equipped to advise clients on related matters such as environment, public law and dispute resolution.
Sources say: "The firm is excellent - it demonstrates a high level of commitment to its clients and combines personalised service with effective legal advice."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Water, energy and mining expert Alejandro Vergara is routinely consulted by clients on their regulatory needs in this sector.
Gonzalo Arévalo Cunich is an acclaimed mining lawyer who is also celebrated for his specialised know-how of water rights.
THE FIRM The energy practice at this well-reputed firm is well placed to assist clients with project planning, development and litigation, and also advises on regulatory matters stemming from the electricity sector. The team serves the likes of Metrogas, Solarpack and the Chilean Ministry of Energy, but is best known for its relationship with long-standing client Colbún. The team recently advised Colombian energy company Interconexión Eléctrica on its bid to win the expansion project targeting parts of Chile's transmission system.
KEY INDIVIDUALS According to sources, department head José Tomás Errázuriz is a true problem solver who stands out for his strong understanding of the energy sector.
Sources highlight associate Sebastián Donoso Rodriguez for his knowledge of water rights as well as his practice in mining and indigenous law.
Associate Fernando Garrido Capdevila is singled out by clients and peers alike for his energy expertise and served as part of the team advising Interconexión Eléctrica on its recent bidding process.
THE FIRM This full-service firm is routinely retained by clients to advise on conventional and renewable energy-related matters such as the financing, negotiation and execution of projects in this area. Enel, Elecnor and Solarpack all feature among the group's clients, and the team recently acted as legal counsel to Endesa regarding the company's thermoelectric plant in Punta Alcalde. It enjoys the support of the firm's broad experience in areas such as corporate, disputes and mining.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Partner Jorge Allende Z is an expert in EPC contracts and has extensive experience in project finance. Sources note his strong working connections in Chile as well as his business understanding.
THE FIRM This full-service firm has amassed a wealth of energy and natural resources expertise over the years, and has an accomplished name in mining matters. The energy practice stands out for its experience in greenfield projects as well as its work in related areas such as M&A and financing. The team typically represents market heavyweights such as Unilever and IBM, and works in close conjunction with the firm's environmental practice in order to defend challenged projects before the Chilean courts, recently acting for long-term client Southern Cross in this regard.
Sources say: "This is an efficient firm that knows the system inside out."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Sources laud energy and environment specialist Gonzalo Jiménez for his accessibility and knowledge of the regulatory ambit.
Gerardo Varela is singled out for his direct client contact and corporate know-how.
THE FIRM This energy and natural resources team draws on the support of the firm's full-service capabilities in order to provide clients with an integrated service that spans environment, finance, corporate and dispute resolution. Recent highlights in this area include working with Idroenergía on the development of the company's Paloma hydropower plant, and assisting Indian company NSL Renewable Power with its acquisition and development of three wind farms located in the south of Chile. Clients underscore the firm's commitment to its clients and its transactional prowess.
Sources say: "They have a strong multidisciplinary team and can provide us with a comprehensive service from start to finish."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Sources hail partner and environment expert Clemente Pérez as an "excellent lawyer with global vision."
Clients value senior associate Sebastián Abogabir for his expertise in project development. He served as part of the team advising NSL Renewable Power in connection with the purchase and development of three wind farms.
THE FIRM Sources recognise this distinguished Chilean all-rounder as a key player in the energy market, and are quick to highlight the group's regulatory know-how. Notable names in the team's client portfolio include Elementos Resources, South American Iron Steel and Cleveland Mining, and the firm was recently retained by Spanish renewables company Norvento in order to provide legal advice on its Caleta Sarco project. The practice is supported by the firm's complementary divisions in corporate, finance, environment and mining.
Sources say: "The firm really stands out for energy matters and the team works hard to find solutions."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Senior partner Juan Irarrázabal has a respected name in the local market and focuses his practice on natural resources, corporate and infrastructure issues.
THE FIRM The energy and natural resources team at this long-standing player handles a sizeable workload for high-profile clients such as BHP Billiton and Petroquímica Dow. In recent times, the firm has assisted Energía de la Patagonia y Aysén as it acquired land and water rights worth USD100 million for its Perquilauquén hydroelectric plant. Clients highlight the team's availability and regulatory know-how as competitive advantages.
Sources say: "The firm is quick to respond and offers accurate and concrete advice."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Mining specialist Sergio Orrego leads the energy practice at the firm and is consistently singled out by clients for his knowledge of the area as well as his considerable commercial expertise.
THE FIRM The energy practice at this compact firm has carved out an important name in the local market, and sources are quick to note its particular expertise in energy litigation and contract matters. The team is particularly well known for its long-standing relationship with GasAtacama, and recently advised the company on the bidding process for floating LNG terminal services to be provided to Chile's Mejillones port. Clients cite the firm's size as being key to its strong service provision.
Sources say: "The firm has developed a great and specialised team in energy and electricity matters, and is well placed to respond to our needs."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Clients are effusive in their praise for Luis Felipe Merino and highlight his legal, commercial and technical knowledge of electricity law as being among his key strengths.
THE FIRM This global powerhouse acts for an array of international energy clients, including Origin Energy, Latin America Power and SK Corporation. The team regularly assists clients with project financing, supply and construction contracts and power purchase agreements, and provides related corporate and disputes counsel as required. The firm was recently retained by Sierra Gorda in connection with agreements undertaken with Abengoa Chile for the development of transmission lines for the company's local mining project.
Sources say: "The firm provides services across a wide spectrum of legal areas and puts a variety of specialists at its client's disposal."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Antonio Ortúzar is the key client contact.
THE FIRM Formerly Fermandois, Evans y Cia, this compact firm is steadily gaining traction in the energy sector, and enters the rankings this year following consistent market praise of its specialised knowledge of energy regulations and water rights. Notable names in the team's portfolio include Pacific Hydro, Abengoa and HidroAysén, with the practice serving as lead counsel to the latter on all queries relating to the project's power plants and transmission lines. Clients value the firm's strong partner involvement and fast delivery.
Sources say: "The firm has excellent knowledge of the electricity sector in Chile and is able to address problems from multiple perspectives."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Power specialist Eugenio Evans has "a practical vision of the market and knows how to solve problems," according to clients. Sources also note his academic contributions to the sector.
Key partner José Miguel Hernández stands out for his knowledge of water rights and his expert handling of the legislation in this area, according to sources.
THE FIRM This full-service firm has a strong focus on the energy sector and sources note its ability to handle the different facets of a project, including its tax, contract and contentious aspects. Recent highlights have seen the team retained by venture capital firm Integrity Partners in order to provide legal advice on its investment in the development of a number of hydroelectric power projects in Chile.
KEY INDIVIDUALS Since publication, Francisco Sánchez has left the firm. Michael Grasty is now the key client contact.
THE FIRM This firm is best known for its mining expertise but is also noted for its work in the field of energy. The team counts HydroChile, Energía Andina and Enorchile among its clients in this area, and recently served as counsel to Antofagasta Minerals in connection with the financing and environmental aspects of its local energy projects. Clients praise the lawyers' excellent written work and language skills.
Sources say: "The firm stands out for its thoroughness and timeliness, and always meets our deadlines."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Mining expert Patricia Núñez is considered a key player in the local energy market and is described by clients as "commercially aware and hard-working."
THE FIRM This celebrated mining firm demonstrates considerable expertise in renewable energy and water rights, and sources are quick to note its strong working relations with the authorities in this area. The firm is best known for its close relationship with long-standing client Barrick, but has developed a broad portfolio of clients across a range of energy sectors. A recent case in point saw the team advise Ingeniería Térmica Kaltemp on the day-to-day needs stemming from the company's solar project in the north of Chile. Clients highlight the team's availability as a competitive advantage.
Sources say: "They are extremely knowledgeable on energy matters and are well equipped to respond to the legal needs of our company."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Associate Pilar Bravo wins strong praise from clients and peers alike for her intimate knowledge of the sector and her ability to deal with the technical aspects of a case.
Sources acknowledge Gonzalo Cubillos of Cubillos, Campos y Molina Abogados as a hard-working and experienced lawyer in the field, and highlight his complementary know-how in urban and environmental matters.
According to clients, Eduardo Rodríguez del Rio of Rodríguez Rosende "is diligent and hard-working, and has vast knowledge of electricity law."
Energy and water specialist Winston Alburquenque of Vergara Galindo Correa Abogados is consistently singled out by clients for his vast expertise in this area.