Manufacturing & Industrial
Manufacturing and industrial companies across many sectors constantly face challenges in pursuit of their growth targets and business goals. Global pressure on profit margins, ever-evolving tax regimes and shifting business and legal landscapes are only a few of the factors at play.
Whether forming a new business entity, expanding, integrating, divesting or optimizing operations, companies turn to us to provide the legal guidance they need. Clients benefit from our depth of understanding in individual sectors, strong local connections, global perspective and cross-practice strength. We bring together knowledge and experience from across the Firm in areas including subcontracting, outsourcing, trade practices, supply and distribution chains, antitrust, M&A, technology, IP, product liability, tax, employment law, and others. Our strong connections to regulatory agencies and governmental authorities throughout the world benefit clients as they navigate regulatory demands and local environments.
We advise clients on their day-to-day operational issues as well as sophisticated transactions that are critical to their success. We have worked on many "first-ever" transactions, reflecting our creativity and innovation as well as our commitment to finding a way through for our clients, no matter what the circumstance.
Our technical legal knowledge is underscored by our desire to always understand the business from our clients' point of view. This distinguished commercial awareness constantly shapes our legal perspective. Throughout fluctuating business and economic cycles, we watch and interpret market movements, helping our clients deal with the challenges of doing business in a rapidly changing world.
Toshiba cartel investigations
We represent Toshiba Corporation in major cartel investigations, including:
- An appeal to the Court of Justice of the European Union against a EU Commission decision fining Toshiba €61.4 million for participating in a global cartel in gas-insulated switchgear
- A successful appeal to the General Court of the EU against the EU Commission decision finding that Toshiba should bear direct liability (and a €28 million fine) for participating in a global cartel in TV and computer monitor tubes. Toshiba was ultimately found liable for some conduct through the actions of a JV in which Toshiba had a minority shareholding. We are now representing Toshiba in civil actions filed in response to the EU Commission decision.
Suzhou Dongshan Precision Manufacturing
We advised Suzhou Dongshan Precision Manufacturing Co., Ltd., one of the largest suppliers of precision sheet metal components headquartered in Suzhou, China, in its $610 million acquisition of Multi-Fineline Electronix, Inc., an Irvine, CA based global provider of high-quality, technologically advanced flexible printed circuits and assemblies.
Greenbrier joint venture with Astra Rail
We advised US-listed The Greenbrier Companies, Inc. on a joint venture with Astra Rail Management GmbH. Greenbrier and Astra Rail merged their operational units in Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Germany into the newly formed company Greenbrier-Astra Rail, combining the manufacturing, engineering and sale of railcars as well as extensive service capabilities to strengthen and expand the business in Europe, the Gulf Cooperation Council nations and Eurasia.
Financing of Synthos S.A.
We advised Synthos S.A., Europe's leading manufacturer of emulsion rubbers, and a leading producer of high quality expandable polystyrene for the building, construction and packaging industries, on a €220 million revolving credit facility that will finance its current activities and those of specific group companies.
Panasonic's acquisition of Hussmann Corporation
We represented Panasonic in its US$1.545 billion acquisition of Hussmann Corporation, a manufacturer of refrigerated display cases and systems. This was the largest strategic acquisition Panasonic has done in the past decade.
Mercedes-Benz France (Daimler AG)
We represented German car manufacturer Daimler and its French subsidiary, Mercedes-Benz France, in a major case before the Conseil d'État, the highest French administrative court, marking the end of their dispute against the French authorities. The dispute concerned a French government order that prevented the registration of several car models. Daimler and Mercedes-Benz France had been accused of not complying with EU rules regarding air conditioning refrigerant. Although the German automobile authority, KBA, allowed the sale of the new Mercedes-Benz models, the French administration blocked their registration. In its final ruling in 2014, the Conseil d'État confirmed all of the manufacturer's arguments and ordered the permanent lifting of the government's order.