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Year in Review: Banking and Finance

2019 has been a hectic and exciting year for our Banking and Finance team, its success timely sealed by Legal500's recognition as a Tier 1 team. In this article we share some of the highlights.

We have seen new financings in most sectors with shipping, renewable energy and aviation being the prime areas in addition to general acquisition financings. As predicted, we have also seen significantly more untraditional types of lending structures than before, including direct lending from various types of equity funds, insurers and leasing houses.

We have also in the second half of the year seen a new wave of restructurings which we expect will continue in 2020.

It is also worth mentioning that the recent changes to the Norwegian financial assistance restrictions, which will come into effect on 1 January 2020, may affect the security structures for acquisition financings in 2020. This is especially relevant for real estate transactions which at the same time will lose its current exception to these restrictions (see our newsletter (in Norwegian) for more information).

As you will see from their separate overview for 2019, a lot has also happened on the regulatory side, including for our Tier 1 FinTech team.

Some highlights from our practice in 2019:

  • We are proud to have been granted a renewed framework agreement with Eksportkreditt Norge AS.
  • Wide range of aviation finance transactions, including the financing and delivery of 150 aircraft currently operated by the Norwegian airline Norwegian Air Shuttle ASA and for their firm order of 100 Airbus 320 neo aircraft, 22 Boing 737-800 aircraft and 100 Boeing 737 max aircraft, with an aggregated value at list price of approximately NOK 127 billion.
  • Numerous vessel financings for borrowers such as Klaveness, Golden Ocean, DHT, Frontline, Oslo Bulk, MPC and SFL.
  • Multiple direct lendings from private equity funds, insurance companies and other finance providers as well as various acquisition financings.
  • Continued focus within renewable energy and project financings, including relating to wind farms such as Raggovidda, Midtfjellet, Kvitfjell and Raudfjell, Stavro and Havøygavlen. We have additionally assisted GIEK with guaranteeing the power purchase agreements for several wind farms.
  • Several new bond loans, including on behalf of AKA, Ragde Eiendom and Njord Securities.
  • Numerous helicopter transactions, e.g. Norsk Luftambulanse AS with the sale of ten search and rescue helicopters to the Hungarian government.

SVW’s Banking and Finance team is one of the biggest and most experienced teams in Norway with seven partners and more than twenty dedicated lawyers in total.

We are looking forward to 2020, which we already see will be another busy year.

This article is part of a series of articles where the different practice groups in SVW will summarize the most important regulatory happenings in Norway in 2019.