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April 15, 2011 3:11 PM

IPO Roundup: Boston Hires Help Latham Ride Along with Zipcar

Posted by Brian Baxter

Latham & Watkins is already reaping the benefits from opening its doors in Boston.

The firm's new Beantown office opened last month after Latham made a series of lateral hires, including four lawyers from Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr. Among those joining the firm were John Chory, the former chair of Wilmer's venture capital group, and corporate partner Susan Mazur.

Those two lawyers had portables--work on an initial public offering for car-sharing service Zipcar. When Zipcar initially filed its plan with the SEC last year to raise $75 million through an IPO, we noted that Chory and Mazur had taken the lead advising the Cambridge, Mass.-based company.

Zipcar finally went public this week, and as of Friday, had raised more than $174 million through its public listing. Chory and Mazur, now at Latham, remain counsel to the company. SEC filings by Zipcar show that the company estimates its legal fees and expenses related to the IPO to be $1.6 million. (Zipcar's general counsel is Dean Breda; Wilmer still handles corporate work for the company.)

Ropes & Gray corporate partner Keith Higgins is leading a team from the firm representing underwriters led by Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan Chase on Zipcar's IPO.

Zipcar wasn't the only IPO to take the market by storm this week.

Another IPO coming to market on Thursday was Buenos Aires-based Arcos Dorados, the largest South American franchisee of fast food chain McDonald's. The Argentine company raised $1.25 billion as its shares priced above their proposed range in their debut.

Davis Polk & Wardwell corporate partners Andrés Gil and Maurico Blanco are advising Arcos Dorados on its IPO, along with offshore firm Maples and Calder. SEC filings show that Arcos Dorados estimates legal fees and expenses related to its IPO at $2.5 million.

Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy and offshore firm Walkers are advising underwriters on the IPO led by JPMorgan, Morgan Stanley, and Bank of America/Merrill Lynch.

Last week, a newly formed royalty trust for Oklahoma City-based Sandridge Energy raised $315 million in an IPO. Covington & Burling corporate partner David Engvall led a team from the firm advising on the IPO for Sandridge Mississippian Trust I, which will own 37 producing oil and gas well and 123 development wells. (Royalty trusts are used in oil and gas production and mining to avoid corporate taxes on profits in a structure similar to that of a real estate investment trust.)

Covington advised Sandridge a year ago on its $1.6 billion acquisition of oil and gas rival Arena Resources, a deal which saw M&A partner Scott Smith nab our Dealmaker of the Week honors.

Sandridge is also being advised on the IPO for its royalty trust by Delaware firm Richards, Layton & Finger. SEC filings by Sandridge show that the company estimates the fees and expenses of legal counsel to be $1.3 million.

Vinson & Elkins corporate partners David Oelman and Matthew Pacey are advising underwriters on the IPO led by Morgan Stanley and Raymond James. Sandridge general counsel Philip Warman is a Vinson alum.

The Am Law Daily reported on Thursday on the trio of firms advising various parties on the IPO for Swiss commodities trader Glencore International, which expects to raise $12.1 billion through its public listing.

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