Trio of firms advise on London South Bank finance deal

Norton Rose, King & Spalding and Jones Day have advised on the £400m Shariah-compliant financing of the redevelopment of King’s Reach Tower on London’s South Bank.

Saudi investor Mohammed Al Subeaei & Sons Investment Company (MASIC), which provided a £145m mezzanine tranche, was advised by a team from King & Spalding led by partners Mike Rainey (Islamic finance), Nigel Heilpern (real estate) and Kevin Conway (tax), following a referral from the firm’s Dubai office.

Heilpern joined King & Spalding from Fried Frank in July to launch a London real estate practice for the US firm.

Rainey commented: “As Gulf investors remain very active in the UK real estate market, we were able to utilise both our local Islamic finance expertise and our new real estate capacity in London to great effect.”

Corporate and Saudi law aspects were handled by partner Benjamin Newland in Dubai and independent counsel Mohammad Al-Ammar in Riyadh. Jones Day acted for the borrower, King’s Reach Estates, with partners Neil Ferguson, Andrew Barker and David Smith advising. King’s Reach Estates is a joint venture between private equity real estate firm CIT and Saudi Arabia’s Jadwa Investment.

The additional lenders – ABC International Bank, Bank of London and the Middle East, National Bank of Kuwait and Boubyan Bank – were advised by a Norton Rose team headed up by Dubai partner Mohammed Paracha. London partners Wasim Khan, Chris Hill and John Challoner advised on property, construction and tax aspects respectively.

The currently vacant site is to be redeveloped as a 30-storey building.