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Eduardo Fernandez is a partner in Willkie's Corporate & Financial Services Department and Managing Partner of the Paris office. Eduardo focuses primarily on mergers and acquisitions and private equity transactions.

A native New Yorker, Eduardo commenced his career as an associate in Willkie's New York office and has been based in Willkie’s Paris office for over 25 years.  

Eduardo has extensive experience advising European companies on cross border M&A (notably involving North American targets or acquirers). He regularly represents some of Europe's most prominent private equity sponsors and other capital providers on leveraged buy-outs, non-control investments, hybrid capital investments and late stage growth capital investments and has acted on several of the most prominent LBO and growth capital transactions in recent years on the French market.

Eduardo also advises family-owned professional long term investors on a variety of matters.

Chambers Europe (2023), Chambers Global (2023) and several other professional guides, including IFLR and Legal 500, rank Eduardo among the elite individuals practicing in Private Equity (High End Capability) and Corporate/M&A in France.  

Eduardo was notably ranked in Band 2 by Chambers Europe 2023 for Private Equity and recognized as “Lawyer of the Year” by Best Lawyers 2024 in Corporate and Venture Capital. 

 

Experience

Private Equity 

Representations of:

  • Ardian on
    • the sale of Solina, the leading European manufacturer of ingredient and seasoning blends for the food industry, to Astorg
    • its acquisition of a majority stake in AD Education, a European education platform specialized in arts, digital and audiovisual, and bolt on acquisitions of Oktogone Group and the European operations of SAE Institute
  • Eurazeo and IK Partners on the acquisition by portfolio company Questel, an end-to-end intellectual property technology based solutions provider, of NovumIP
  • IK Partners on numerous transactions (across different investment strategies), including most recently
    • the acquisition of Eurofeu Group, a leading French fire safety company, from CAPZA
    • the sale of Exxelia, a global leader in the design, manufacture and sale of high-reliability ("Hi-Rel"), complex, passive electronic components and rotary joint assemblies for mostly aerospace and defense applications, to HEICO Corporation
    • the sale of Linxis Group, a leading global supplier of industrial equipment and automation solutions for the food, pharma and cosmetic industries, to Hillenbrand, Inc.
    • (in consortium with Five Arrows Principal Investments) the sale of a minority stake in i@d, a leading French digital network of real estate agents, to Insight Partners
    • the sale of a significant stake in Questel, a major worldwide technology player in the area of intellectual property management, to Eurazeo
    • its acquisition of a majority stake in Batisanté, a leading compliance and safety services provider, primarily servicing residential buildings and professional customers in France, from LGT Capital
    • its acquisition of a majority stake in Kersia, a global leader in biosecurity and food safety from Ardian
    • its acquisition of a majority stake in LSA Courtage, a platform for acquiring, distributing and managing non-life insurance policies for individuals and professionals
    • its investment in Vivalto Santé, a leading provider of private hospital services in France
    • its investment in IM Global, a worldwide asset management network providing access to high-quality investment firms
    • its investment in Safic-Alcan, an independent distributor of specialty chemicals
  • Intermediate Capital Group (ICG) on
    • the sale of Etanco, the leading European designer, manufacturer and distributor of building fasteners and fixing systems, to Simpson Strong-Tie Company, Inc.
    • its acquisition of a controlling stake in Circet, the leading telecommunications network service provider in Europe, from Advent
    • its investment in Biogroup, a leading French operator of medical diagnostic laboratories
  • PAI Partners on numerous transactions, including most recently
    • the contemplated sale of ELITech Group, a global manufacturer of in-vitro diagnostics, to Bruker Corporation
    • the sale of Novastep, a subsidiary of portfolio company Amplitude Surgical, to Enovis Corporation
    • its acquisition of a majority stake in La Compagnie de Desserts, a leading producer of frozen desserts and ice cream for the B2B channel, from Argos Wityu and Credit Mutuel Equity
    • its acquisition of a majority stake in Euronext listed Amplitude Surgical, a French leader on the global surgical technology market for lower-limb orthopedics, from Apax Partners
    • the sale of a majority stake in leading retirement and nursing home operator DomusVi to Intermediate Capital Group and Sagesse Retraite Santé
  • TA Associates on its acquisition of a 25% stake in Foncia, a major provider of residential property management services in Europe, majority owned by Partners Group

Family Owned Investor Transactions:

Representations of: 

  • Compagnie Nationale à Portefeuille, on its acquisition of a majority stake in CLS, a global leader in satellite based monitoring and surveillance solutions 
  • Mousse Partners, on its investment in a consortium led by Concordia, holding company of the Rothschild family, in furtherance of the simplified tender offer and delisting of Rothschild & Cie 

M&A

Representations of: 

  • A world-renowned luxury brand and fashion house on 
    • its acquisition of Orlebar Brown, a clothing brand specializing in tailored men's swim short 
    • its acquisition of a minority stake in, and strategic commercial alliance with, Farfetch, an online luxury fashion retail platform, and
    • the sale of its historic cosmetics business, Bourjois, to Coty Inc.
  • Bonduelle on numerous transactions, including most recently
    • the sale of a 65% stake in Bonduelle Americas Long Life to Fonds de solidarité FTQ and Caisse de Depot et placement du Québec (CDPQ)
    • its acquisition of Ready Pac Foods, the U.S. market leader in single-serve salad bowls, from H.I.G. Capital
  • Cérélia on numerous transactions, including
    • a number of acquisitions, notably: of General Mills' Knack & Back brand dough business, US Waffle, Wewalka's North American pizza dough business, English Bay Batter Inc. and De Bioderij
    • the sale of certain assets comprising its North American Canned Refrigerated Dough and Pie Crust business to TreeHouse
  • ISS A/S on numerous transactions, including 
    • the contemplated sale of its French activities (ISS France) to Onet SA
    • the sale of its "ISS Hygiène et Prévention" subsidiary to Weinberg Capital Partners 
    • the sale of its French waste management business unit, ISS Environnement, to Paprec Group
    • the sale of its French landscaping business subsidiary, Espaces Verts, to Chequers Capital
  • La Martinière Groupe and its main shareholders in connection with the combination with Média-Participations creating the third-largest publishing group in France 
  • Mailjet and its shareholders, including Alven Capital, Iris Capital, Seventure Partners, on its acquisition by Mailgun, a leading email delivery platform backed by Thoma Bravo 
  • Plan B Entertainment, an award-winning production company co-founded and led by Brad Pitt, on the sale of a significant stake therein to Mediawan, a leading independent premium content studio in Europe 
  • Technip Energies (and predecessor companies) on numerous transactions, including
    • an investment in McPhy Energy's €180 million capital increase, to fund global scale-up of zero-carbon hydrogen
    • the sale of Technip Benelux NV to Ludancom
    • the sale of Technip Germany GmbH to ATOP 
    • its acquisition of the Zimmer polymer technology business of Air Liquide
  • Unipex, a leading French life science ingredients distributor, and its founders and management team, on its spin-off from Lucas Meyer Cosmetics and subsequently in the sale thereof to Barentz International
  • Vilmorin & Cie, one of the world’s leading seed companies, on numerous transactions, including most recently 
    • on the successful simplified public tender offer from Limagrain
    • the acquisitions of two independent South American seed companies, Sursem (Argentina) and Geneze (Brazil) 
 

Credentials

Education


New York University School of Law, J.D., 1996 Dartmouth College, A.B., 1993

Bar Admissions


Paris, 2004 New York, 1997 New Jersey, 1996

Court Admissions


United States District Court, District of New Jersey, 1996

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