Paul Hastings, a leading global law firm, announced today that the firm is representing Shuanghui International Holdings Limited, the owner of China’s largest publicly-traded meat processing enterprise, in a US$7.1 billion agreement to acquire Smithfield Foods, Inc. (NYSE: SFD), the largest U.S. publicly-traded pork processor and hog producer. The combination will create one of the largest global pork production, processing and packaged meat companies in the world.

Paul Hastings also advised Shuanghui on the financing associated with the transaction. The transaction will be financed through a combination of cash provided by Shuanghui, rollover of existing Smithfield debt, as well as debt financing that has been committed by Morgan Stanley Senior Funding, Inc. and a syndicate of banks. The global footprints of Shuanghui International and Smithfield Foods necessitated close coordination of a large multi-national team of Paul Hastings attorneys spanning many disciplines to structure and prosecute the transaction.

The Paul Hastings global team on this complex transaction was led by Raymond Li, Partner and Chair of Greater China, who ensured seamless coordination between Shuanghui and our multi-jurisdictional team of lawyers on legal issues relating to M&A, employment, finance, IP and tax.

Paul Hastings chair of Global Merger & Acquisitions Carl Sanchez, Finance partner Michael Chernick and Global Trade partner Scott Flicker led the Paul Hastings team in the US, which also included associates Elizabeth RazzanoLaura McGurtyMichael LaPlanteEllen Holmes and Dana Stepnowsky. The Hong Kong M&A team was led by partner Vivian Lam, with support from associates Fang PeiKatherine Watlington and Wilson Yiu.

Partners from the Washington D.C., New York, Los Angeles, London and Paris offices of Paul Hastings were also critical members of the overall effort, including Hamilton LoebThomas MounteerTodd DuffieldErika CollinsMario IppolitoJeff PellegrinoCharles PatriziaSteve HarrisAlexander Lee and Pierre KirchGarrett Hayes and C. Scott Hataway, and associates Edward HolmesFelicia Yen, Donald Boyajian, Devon Winkles and Morgan Heavener.

The closing of the transaction is expected in the second half of 2013. The closing is subject to customary closing conditions, including shareholder approval, and the receipt of antitrust approval under applicable anti-competition laws.

Paul Hastings previously advised Shuanghui International and its subsidiaries in a series of offshore shareholding restructurings and a highly complex asset restructuring and the resultant $2.5 billion general offer to acquire A-shares in Shuanghui Investment. This transaction was one of the largest public company M&A transactions in China and was awarded “M&A Deal of the Year 2012” by China Business Law Journal.


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