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July 18, 2011 1:18 PM

Three Firms Hitch Ride on Hertz's $930 Million Donlen Buy

Posted by Brian Baxter

Three Am Law 100 firms have picked up the keys for advisory roles on Hertz's $930 million acquisition of vehicle leasing and management company Donlen, which includes the payment of $250 million in cash and the assumption of $680 million in debt.

Hertz's acquisition of Donlen--which provides fleet leasing, management, and maintenance services for more than 144,000 vehicles to client companies throughout North America and Europe--allows the world's largest publicly traded rental car company to expand its car, truck, and equipment leasing services. 

SEC filings by Hertz show that Jenner & Block M&A cochair partner Thomas Monson is serving as lead M&A counsel to the company on its proposed acquisition of Donlen.

Hertz is also receiving structured finance counsel from Weil, Gotshal & Manges, which is fielding a team that includes corporate partner Jason Smith, tax partner Larry Gelbfish, business finance and restructuring partner Jacqueline Marcus, corporate counsel Brian Waldbaum, and associate Matthew Schwartz.

Both firms have handled previous matters for Park Ridge, N.J.-based Hertz. Weil's work for the company has included several asset-backed notes offerings. Hertz's general counsel, J. Jeffrey Zimmerman, is a former Jenner partner.

Privately held, Northbrook, Ill.-based Donlen has turned to Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom M&A partner Rodd Schreiber, tax partner David Levy, and structured finance partner David Midvidy for counsel on the Hertz transaction. Donlen's general counsel is Carla Garfinkle.

Hertz's proposed acquisition of Donlen comes amid the car rental giant's renewed effort to acquire Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group; Hertz revived its push to snag Dollar Thrifty in May with a new offer meant to counter a competing bid by rental car rival Avis. (According to our previous reports, Hertz is being advised by Cravath, Swaine & Moore, Debevoise & Plimpton, and Jones Day in its latest effort to take control of Dollar Thrifty.)

Avis, which last month paid $1 billion to acquire its former European affiliate, has not yet responded to the latest Hertz offer for Dollar Thrify. Hertz has said publicly that its pursuit of Dollar Thrifty--the company filed a Hart-Scott-Rodino notification on Thursday--will not be affected by its purchase of Donlen.

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