Juan Manuel González Bernal

Juan Manuel González Bernal

Shareholder

Juan Manuel González Bernal has over 20 years of experience handling complex project finance transactions representing sponsors, developers, structuring agents and lenders across all sectors (airports, transportation, water, energy and waste management, among others), and has extensively focused on public procurement and the legal regime applicable to public works and services, and public-private partnerships in Mexico.

Juan Manuel is a founding member of Greenberg Traurig’s Mexico City office, and since then has assembled a 15-strong team of attorneys dedicating their time to all matters related to infrastructure and energy project development with deep capabilities in both the regulatory and transactional arena, as well as in alternative dispute resolution mechanisms including proceedings before the Secretaría de la Función Pública and the Auditoría Superior de la Federación in landmark cases like Túnel Emisor Oriente and the Durango-Mazatlán and Nuevo Necaxa-Tihuatlán highways.

Areas of Concentration

  • Infrastructure
  • Cross-border transactions
  • Global energy and infrastructure 
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Capabilities

Experience

Acted as legal advisors to Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BAML), financial advisor to the Mexican Ministry of Communications and Transportation (Secretaría de Comunicaciones y Transportes) in the structuring and coordination of the international public bid to build, operate and update the mobile broadband services known as “Shared Network” for 20 years, said broadband will operate at 90 megahertz over the spectrum of a 700 Mhz band, under the legal structure of a Public-Private Partnership (Asociación Público-Privada). Our services also included providing legal advisement in the planning and design of the financing by the development bank, advising in antitrust matters, among others. The investment for this project during the following 10 years is estimated in US$7,500 million.
Represented ICA in its partnership with the airport of Paris and Societé Génerale, in the preparation of its bid proposal and participation in the bidding process for the privatization of the Grupo Aeroportuario Centro Norte and we provided legal advice to the airport operator, commonly known by its corporate name “OMA”, in the initial public offering (IPO) for more than MX$376 million (it was the only IPO registered in the Mexican Stock Exchange in 2006 and was also listed in NASDAQ); furthermore, we provide legal advice in corporate and stock market matters.
  • Representation of Empresas ICA, S.A.B. de C.V. (BMV: ICA*/ NYSE: ICA) in the formation of a joint venture with CDPQ (Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec) one of the most relevant institutional managers of pension funds in Canada, through an operational platform that owns four companies which hold concession titles in ICA’s operational tollroads and highways (Kantunil – Cancún tollroad, Rio Verde – Ciudad Valles highway, Libramiento La Piedad and Acapulco Tunnel).
  • Represented two subsidiaries of Empresas ICA, S.A.B. de C.V. (NYSE: ICA) holding contracts with the Mexican government for the construction, maintenance, operation and exploitation of two federal toll roads on the shelf registration of preferred bonds for an aggregate amount of MXN$10 billion and the first two offerings thereunder for an aggregate amount of approximately MXN$ 4 billion represented by bonds denominated in inflation-linked units (UDIs). The deal is considered a ground breaking transaction since it is the first bond offering that captures different risks through a same issuing trust which, at the same time, isolates the underlying assets backing-up the different series of bonds issued by such trust. In this particular case, the issuing trust captured (i) cash flows paid by the federal government under a P3 agreement; and (ii) toll road fees paid by toll-road users under two government concession titles, and issued two series of preferred bonds each backed by one of the aforementioned assets. The bonds were placed by Casa de Bolsa BBVA Bancomer, S.A. de C.V., Grupo Financiero BBVA Bancomer, Morgan Stanley México, S.A. de C.V., Casa de Bolsa, Casa de Bolsa Santander, S.A. de C.V., Grupo Financiero Santander México, and Deutsche Securities, S.A. de C.V., Casa de Bolsa and Deutsche Bank México, S.A., Institución de Banca Múltiple.
  • Advised Autovía Necaxa – Tihuatlán, S.A. de C.V. in a financing through syndicated loans for approximately US$581 Million, which represents to date the largest investment for greenfield projects in the Mexican highway industry. The financing will be used for a project committed under a concession and long-term services agreement awarded by the SCT to build, operate and maintain a high way of more than 36 km, as well as to operate and maintain a toll road of more than 48 km.
  • Advised Ingenieros Civiles Asociados (ICA) on the development and financing of the 750 MW Hydroelectric Project El Cajón - Project tendered by the Federal Energy Commission and awarded to Constructora Internacional de Infraestructura, S.A. de C.V. (company formed by ICA, La Nacional and Energo). The most relevant activities included the negotiation of the contracts required to obtain financing, as well as the structuring of financial guarantee schemes and review of the construction, supply and electro-mechanic installation agreements.
  • Advised Empresas ICA (NYSE: ICA) in its 2007 and 2009 public share offerings in domestic and foreign markets with total proceeds from the placement of approximately US$550 and US$350 million, respectively, as well as in the 2007 financing (US$1 billion) of the "La Yesca" hydroelectric plant with a power generation capacity of 750 MW to be located in the State of Jalisco, Mexico.
  • Representation of Mexico Infrastructure Partners in a seller financed acquisition, through the issuing trust which issued the infrastructure bonds (CKDs) listed in the Mexican Stock Exchange under ticker symbol “EXICK14” (“EXI”), of an indirect participation of 16.25% in Energía Mayakán, S. de R.L. de C.V., the entity which currently operates a gas pipeline of approximately 775 kilometers of length, which purpose is to transport natural gas, and which runs from Tabasco to Yucatan (the “Project”). Our engagement included drafting and negotiating the deal documents (under New York and Mexican Law), conduct due diligence over the Project and the SPVs, setting up EXI’s corporate structure for the purchase and obtaining the regulatory authorizations (COFECE and CFE).
  • Participated as counsel to Empresas ICA and subsidiaries in the financing of the construction of, and provision of non-penitentiary services to, two Mexican federal penitentiaries through preferred and subordinated debt offerings for an aggregate amount of approximately US$650 million.
  • Representation of a Mexican technology company in an unsecured syndicated loan, guaranteed by the borrower's subsidiaries in Mexico, Spain, Colombia and Chile.
  • Part of the Mexican negotiating team for the North American Free Trade Agreement, participating in the chapter relating to investment and financial services.
  • Represented Banco BTG Pactual in all matters related to the licensing, incorporation and commencement of operations of a Mexican broker-dealer subsidiary, the first of Brazilian capital to be incorporated in Mexico.

Some of the above representations were handled by Mr. González prior to his joining Greenberg Traurig, S.C.

Recognition & Leadership

  • Listed, IFLR 1000 Mexico, "Leading Lawyers – Capital Markets, Banking, Project Finance," 2017
  • Listed, Chambers Global
    • Projects (Mexico), 2012-2016
    • Banking & Finance (Mexico), 2016
  • Listed, Chambers Latin America, Projects, 2013-2014
  • Member, Winning Team, IJGlobal Americas’ Awards, “Latin American Project Bond Deal of the Year,” 2014
  • Team Member, "Corporate/M&A – Law Firm of the Year," Chambers Latin America Awards, 2014
  • Listed, The Legal 500 Latin America, Energy and Natural Resources, 2012
  • Member, Winning Team, Acquisition International magazine, "Overall Law Firm of the Year – Mexico," 2013
  • Member, Winning Team, Acquisition International magazine, "Most Trusted Law Firm of the Year – Mexico," 2013
  • Member, Winning Team, InterContinental Finance, "Mergers & Acquisitions Firm of the Year – Mexico," 2013
  • Member, Winning Team, Lawyers World Law Awards, "Mergers & Acquisitions Firm of the Year – Mexico," 2013
  • Member, Winning Team, DealMakers, "Law Firm of the Year - Mergers & Acquisitions - Mexico," 2012-2013
  • Team Member, Winning Team, Euromoney, "Deal of the Year - Project Finance" Award, 2012

Credentials

Education
  • LL.M., Harvard Law School, 1995
  • Law Degree, Escuela Libre de Derecho, Mexico City, D.F., Mexico, 1992
Admissions
  • Mexico
Languages
  • Spanish, Native
  • English