US and Dutch firms advise on Carlyle's €10bn acquisition of Akzo Nobel's chemicals business

Latham & Watkins and Proskauer Rose are among a clutch of law firms to have taken roles on the Carlyle Group’s €10.1bn (£8.9bn) acquisition of Akzo Nobel’s speciality chemicals business.

The Dutch paints and chemicals multinational announced today (27 March) that it had reached agreement with the US private equity firm and its longstanding investment partner GIC, the sovereign wealth fund of Singapore.

Akzo first announced plans to sell the business in April last year in a bid to evade a takeover from rival PPG Industries.

Latham is advising Carlyle with a corporate deal team led by London partner Michael Bond and Washington DC partner David Dantzic. It also includes Washington partner Marc Granger and New York partner Steven Betensky.

The US firm is also providing finance advice with a Washington DC-based team comprising capital markets partners Patrick Shannon and Jason Licht, and leveraged finance partners Jeffrey Chenard and Manu Gayatrinath.

It is understood that Carlyle has also instructed Dutch firm Loyens & Loeff, which is fielding a team led by senior corporate partners Bas Vletter and Harmen Holtrop.

Proskauer is acting for GIC with a team led by corporate partner Matt Rees that also included co-head of M&A Ronald Papa in New York.

Meanwhile, Akzo is being advised by Slaughter and May’s Dutch best friend firm De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek. Slaughters also has a relationship with Akzo, and advised on its 2008 takeover of Imperial Chemical Industries.

The deal is subject to regulatory approvals and is expected to be concluded before the end of the year.

In 2015, Latham acted alongside Allen & Overy and Alston & Bird on Carlyle’s $8bn purchase of Veritas following the software company’s split from Symantec. On that deal, Latham advised on the debt financing aspects, while A&O acted for Carlyle on the non-US aspects of the deal. Symantec turned to Baker McKenzie and Fenwick & West.