January 15, 2020
Weil was recently profiled by Law360 as a 2019 Real Estate “Practice Group of the Year” for its role in closing some of the year’s blockbuster transactions.
The profile highlighted the team’s role guiding SoftBank Group Corp.’s $9.5 billion investment in WeWork, the real estate and co-working space company with approximately 850 locations in 123 cities worldwide. The article also highlighted Weil’s work advising Sears in the $5.2 billion sale of 425 retail locations to ESL Investments Inc.
Law360 noted Weil’s leadership in “bet the company” transactions, complex and transformative deals that require a breadth and depth of expertise. “While we do traditional real estate deals if there is such a thing anymore, many of the deals we work on are multidisciplinary,” said W. Michael Bond, Co-Head of Weil’s Real Estate practice. “We are able to be not just service providers, but the leaders of the transaction.”
The article also noted the group’s role advising Brookfield Asset Management and related entities on transactions that are milestones in the industry. Weil recently advised Brookfield on nearly $100 billion in transactions, including the two largest real estate deals of 2018: the $14.4 billion acquisition of GGP Inc. and the $11.4 billion acquisition of Forest City Realty Trust.
“The GGP deal raised eyebrows because it gave Brookfield control of one of the two largest and most successful retail REITs which gives it enormous power in the real estate sector,” said Philip Rosen, Co-Head of the Real Estate practice. “The Forest City deal was considered by many to be a very good transaction … They got control of one of the creams of the crop in the real estate sector.”
The success of Weil’s Real Estate group is due in part to the fact that its attorneys work closely with their colleagues in the Mergers & Acquisitions, Private Equity and Business Finance & Restructuring practices, Law360 reported. This interdisciplinary reach allows Weil to take the lead on a variety of large-scale and many-sided transactions.
Partner Evan Levy said: “Our core strength is being able to take these multidimensional problems, challenges and opportunities and trying to find innovative but simple solutions to help our clients reach their commercial objective.”