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White & Case Advises Avon Rubber p.l.c. on Strategic Acquisition of 3M’s Ballistic-Protection Business

Global law firm White & Case LLP has advised Avon Rubber p.l.c., a UK-listed innovative technology group, specialising in chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) and respiratory protection systems, on its strategically important acquisition of 3M's ballistic-protection business in the United States (the Business) and the rights to the Ceradyne brand.

The Business is a leading provider of next generation armour, including ballistic helmets and body armour plates to the U.S. Department of Defense Soldier Protection System, as well as being a supplier of helmets and body armour to Rest of World Military and Law Enforcement customers. The transformational deal for Avon Rubber, and the largest in its 134 year history, is in line with the company's stated strategy to create shareholder value through, amongst other things, targeting value enhancing acquisitions to complement its existing businesses and add additional growth opportunities.

White & Case enlisted teams in its London, New York and Washington offices to deliver the trans-Atlantic deal, which is a Class 2 transaction for Avon Rubber under the UK Listing Rules. The transaction highlights the Firm's expertise in our US National Security/CFIUS (Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States) practice, relevant to the transaction given the Business' status as supplier to the U.S. Department of Defense.

"This transaction required closely integrated deal execution in the UK and US, demonstrating the unique footprint of White & Case's M&A practice on both sides of the Atlantic and our ability to offer a seamless service to UK plc clients who are looking to execute M&A in the US," said Patrick Sarch, Co-Head of the London M&A Corporate practice, who led the Firm's UK deal team.

"Few firms, if any, would have been able to pull together the full range of expertise in both the UK and the US to deliver this transaction for Avon Rubber. In addition to our strong corporate practices, our technology transactions practice and our leading National Security/CFIUS practice, which has more than 25 years of experience counselling clients on national security regulatory requirements and processes, were instrumental in securing the desired outcome for our client," said John Reiss, White & Case Global Head of Mergers & Acquisitions, who led the Firm's US deal team.

Closing of the transaction is subject to U.S. regulatory approvals.

The transaction was led by partners Patrick Sarch and Dominic Ross (both London) and John Reiss and Frank Lupinacci (both New York) and the team included partners Lindsey Canning (London), Arlene Hahn (New York), Farhad Jalinous, Karalyn Mildorf and Rebecca Farrington (all Washington, DC), counsel Margot Lindsay (London) and associate Mecaila Chapman (New York).

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