Cayman Islands: Cayman Islands Firm Walkers Acts on Largest Ever Japanese Leveraged Acquisition.
Last Updated: 14 October 2003

Leading Cayman Islands based law firm Walkers advised Ripplewood Holdings L.L.C. on all Cayman law aspects of its US$ 2.21 billion (¥ 261.3 billion) leveraged acquisition of the fixed line business of Japan Telecom from Vodafone Plc. The transaction closed on 7 October 2003.

Under the terms of the agreement, Japan Telecom Holdings will receive US$ 2.21 billion (¥261.3 billion), of which US$ 275.4 million (¥32.5 billion) will be in redeemable preferred equities and the rest in cash. The deal is the largest leveraged acquisition in Japan to date.

Ripplewood Holdings L.L.C is a New York based private equity firm established in 1995. It manages approximately US$4 billion of committed capital through four institutional private equity funds, focusing primarily on investments in the United States and Japan. Ripplewood is the pioneer of the "Industrial Partnership" investment philosophy, in which the firm forms partnerships with world-class operating executives to acquire businesses in targeted industries and pursue pre-defined strategies to enhance the value of these businesses. The acquisition of Japan Telecom is being funded principally by RHJ Industrial Partners, a Cayman Islands registered Ripplewood fund dedicated to making investments in Japan.

Walkers Corporate partner Iain McMurdo supported by associates Phillip Millward, Ingrid Pierce and Morven McMillan advised Ripplewood on the transaction, together with Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and Nagashima Ohno & Tsunematsu.

Linklaters and Anderson Mori acted for Vodafone Plc and Clifford Chance and Mitsui Yasuda Wani & Maeda acted as legal advisers to the banks.

Iain McMurdo stated "We have advised Ripplewood since its formation and we were delighted to assist on the funding, acquisition and leverage aspects of this complex deal"

This is the latest in a series of significant transactions for Walkers' M&A and Private Equity group, which have included advising on all aspects of Cayman law (private equity funding and acquisition structuring) for Madison Dearborn Partners' Euro 4.0 billion leveraged buyout of Jefferson Smurfit Group plc, one of the largest transactions of its kind in Europe and on the formation of private equity house MidOcean Partners, a US$1.6bn spin-off from Deutsche Bank both led by Walkers partner Iain McMurdo.

For further information please contact:

Iain McMurdo, Partner

Direct line: 345 914 4217


Sheree Harrison, Marketing & PR Manager

Direct line: 1 345 814 4652


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