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Clifford Chance advises Goldman Sachs on Ecuador's landmark social bond

February 6, 2020

Clifford Chance advises Goldman Sachs on Ecuador's landmark social bond

Leading global law firm Clifford Chance has brought together a cross-border, cross-practice team to advise Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC as Global Coordinator, Bookrunner and Social Bond Structuring Agent in connection with Ecuador's issuance of a US$400 million social bond and as Placement Agent and Initial Purchaser in connection with its repackaging. Proceeds from the social bond will be used to boost Casa para Todos, Ecuador's social housing project.

Casa para Todos provides affordable housing for medium- to low-income families. The proceeds of the social bond will help provide affordable housing to more than 24,000 families and an anticipated US$1.35 billion in investments to Ecuador.

The Inter-American Development Bank (IADB), has provided a partial guarantee for the bond, for US$300 million. This is the first time the IADB has provided a credit guarantee for a bond and only the second time a multilateral development bank has provided such a guarantee for a sovereign bond.

London-based partner Deborah Zandstra, who co-led the Clifford Chance team along with New York partner Jon Zonis commented, "we are proud to have advised Goldman Sachs on this first-of-its-kind deal as Latin America pivots toward sustainable investments across the region."

"It's exciting not just to guide our long-time client on this landmark transaction, which is the first ever social bond issued by a sovereign, but to also see the positive impact of responsible investing play out in the region," said Jon.

Working with Deborah and Jon on this deal were the following:

  • London: senior associates Azam Taiyeb and Charles Wakiwaka, associates Phoebe Bower, Tanner Phaovibul and James Kelton and trainees Domenico Cullura and Alice Odolant
  • New York: partners Gareth Old and Avrohom Gelber, associates Andrés Berry, Mariana Estévez and Jason Sacks
  • Luxembourg: partners Marc Mehlen and Geoffrey Scardoni, and senior associates Eimear O'Dwyer and Josselin Badoc
  • Amsterdam: partner Michiel Sunderman and associates Robin Houtveen and Nolan Groenland

Clifford Chance has been recognized for decades as a preeminent law firm in Latin America. The Firm has led the way in developing successful, novel financing structures for a diverse client-base, and is constantly innovating its service offering, such as with a dedicated Latin America group specialized in capital markets, bank and project financing structures representing initial purchasers, underwriters, issuers and investors. The Firm's lawyers have extensive experience in the region's distinct business, legal and regulatory landscapes. They provide expertise that cuts across a full range of relevant practices, while aligning pioneering solutions with the unique characteristics of the Latin American market and the changing needs of clients.