August 13, 2015

Cross-border Willkie team represents French airport shop operator Lagardère Travel Retail in its deal to acquire Paradies, a leading airport travel retailer in North America, creating the second-largest travel retailer in North America. 

On August 11, Willkie client Lagardère Travel Retail announced the signing of its $530 million deal to acquire Paradies, an airport travel retail leader in North America, from private equity firm Freeman Spogli & Co, the Paradies family and other shareholders.  The combination of the activities of Lagardère in North America and Paradies is expected to create the second-largest travel retailer in North America, a large and expanding market.

Paradies, a recognized market leader, currently operates through long-term concessions in more than 76 U.S. and Canadian airports, including the top 10 airports: Atlanta, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas-Fort Worth, Denver, New York-JFK, San Francisco, Charlotte, Las Vegas and Phoenix. Its nationwide coverage is complementary with that of Lagardère, which has a stronger presence in Canada and a number of international U.S. airports including New York-JFK and Los Angeles.  Sales at the newly combined company are expected to be close to $800 million (€730 million).

The cross-border, multidisciplinary Willkie deal team was led by partners Thomas Cerabino, Annette Péron and Adam Turteltaub, and included partners Eugene Chang, Matthew Freimuth, Mark Holdsworth, Hillel Jacobson and Paul Lombard, of counsel Daniel Backer, special counsel Jonathan Konoff and associates Elizabeth Case, Patrick Horan, Zelda Ferguson, Jacob Kleinman, Dorna Mohaghegh, Carly Glover Saviano, Helen Skinner, Ryan Stott and Edward Torres.