Willkie Paris attorneys were named “European Private Equity Team of the Year” for their overall excellence in the area of private equity at the 2012 IFLR Europe Awards. The firm was also part of the team honored at the awards ceremony in London in the category of “Private Equity Deal of the Year” for its representation of PAI partners in the $1.1 billion sale of its 50 percent stake in Yoplait, the second largest yogurt maker in the world, to U.S.-based General Mills, one of the world’s largest food companies. Willkie advised on three out of the five deals nominated in this category.
In addition to the Yoplait deal, the Paris office advised PAI on several other major transactions in 2011 including its €2.1 billion sale of SPIE, $1 billion sale of Kwik-Fit, €535 million acquisition of Kiloutou and the sale of its controlling stake in Compagnie Européenne de Prévoyance SAS (CEP). The SPIE and CEP deals were also nominated for “Private Equity Deal of the Year.”
The PAI/Yoplait/General Mills deal team, led by partners Daniel Payan and Cédric Hajage, included partners Jacques-Philippe Gunther and Marie-Hélène Raffin; national partner Paul Lombard; special European counsel Jeffrey Fouts and Faustine Viala and associate Elise Carrera.
The International Financial Law Review (IFLR), based in the U.K., is a leading publisher for the financial legal community.