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November 18, 2010 2:32 PM

A Big Day for GM, And Its Lawyers

Posted by Brian Baxter

Almost a year-and-a-half after exiting bankruptcy, General Motors increased the number of shares it plans to sell in an initial public offering by 31 percent, helping the Detroit-based automaker raise $23.1 billion in what could be the largest IPO ever. And GM's lawyers at Jenner & Block in Chicago are reaping some of the benefits.

According to a prospectus filed with the SEC, GM states that Jenner has received $6.5 million for its work on the IPO. As reported by The Am Law Daily in August, Jenner corporate partners Joseph Gromacki, William Tolbert, Jr., and Brian Boch are serving as lead issuer's counsel for GM. Gromacki, who chairs the firm's corporate practice, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

GM is a longtime Jenner client and Gromacki advised the embattled automaker a year ago when it sought to restructure its operations through a 40-day pit stop in bankruptcy court. The process yielded roughly $16.5 million in legal fees and expenses for Jenner. As a result of its IPO, GM will see the stake held by the U.S. Treasury Department slashed from 61 percent to 26 percent, as the company begins the process of returning to profitability.

The Associated Press reports that GM's main joint venture partner in China, SAIC Motor Corp., announced on Thursday that it had bought a 1 percent stake in the automaker for nearly $500 million by paying $33 a share.

Linklaters corporate partners Scott Sonnenblick and Jeffrey Schmidt are advising SAIC on the transaction along with corporate counsel Richard Gu and Jeff Zhang. SAIC, which is a longtime client of the firm, is partnered with GM in China and India.

GEN Investment Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the government of Canada, sold 35 million GM shares to raise roughly $1.15 billion, according to Pensions & Investments. Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison corporate partners Edwin "Ted" Maynard, Matthew Abbott, and Andrew Foley advised GEN on the share sale.

Davis Polk & Wardwell corporate partners Richard Drucker and Sarah Beshar are advising underwriters on the IPO led by Bank of America/Merrill Lynch, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, and Morgan Stanley. The New York Times's Dealbook has a breakdown of the underwriting fees.

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