Morrison & Foerster has represented Japan’s SoftBank on a $13 billion merger between OneWeb, a U.S. satellite startup that it backs, and Luxembourg-based operator Intelsat, which turned to Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz for advice.
SoftBank announced a $1 billion investment in OneWeb late last year, while Intelsat was an initial investor in OneWeb and took a minority equity stake in 2015.
Luxembourg’s Arendt & Medernach and offshore firm Mourant Ozannes also acted for SoftBank in the deal. Along with MoFo, the firms likewise advised the Tokyo-headquartered telecoms giant in its plan to purchase a 39.9 percent voting stake in the combined company for $1.7 billion.
Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy and Boston-based Choate Hall & Stewart provided guidance to OneWeb, while Elvinger Hoss Prussen handled matters related to Luxembourg law for Intelsat. The Goldman Sachs Group, Intelsat’s financial adviser, tapped Sullivan & Cromwell as its legal counsel.
According to Reuters, the merger would eventually create a combined network of hundreds or even thousands of satellites in around Earth. The deal comes as SoftBank, which has traditionally focused on telecoms and technology, zeroes in on more cutting-edge tech investments as telecom services markets mature.
MoFo, a longtime adviser to SoftBank, was led by partners Robert Townsend, Lauren Bellerjeau, David Slotkin, Bernie Pistillo and Paul Jahn in the U.S., together with Kenneth Siegel and Leo Aguilar in Tokyo.
The Wachtell team was headed by partners Steven Cohen, Victor Goldfeld and Joshua Feltman. Partner Stephen Kotran oversaw the transaction for S&C.