Squire Sanders acted as lead legal advisers on the acquisition by a UK/China consortium of the entire issued share capital of Covpress International Holdings. The deal was lead out of the firm’s Birmingham office and involved a team of over 20 Squire Sanders lawyers based across its Birmingham and Shanghai offices.
The deal comes a week after Squire Sanders gained a top 10 ranking within legal newswire Law360’s annual “Global 20” list identifying the 20 global law firms involved in the biggest, most complex and most diverse array of cross-border matters over the past year.
Coventry based Covpress, whose biggest clients include Jaguar Land Rover, Nissan and Renault, makes body panels for many of the major automotive producers. It is also a major supplier of new generation of gas meters for the European market and of specialist exhaust systems for Caterpillar equipment. With over 450 employees it reported annual sales of £67 million in the year ended 31 December 2012
The deal is a major inward investment in the UK’s re-emerging manufacturing sector. The buying consortium consists of Telford based TIA (GB) Ltd (trading as ‘Treadsetters’), one of the principal UK and European tyre wholesalers of truck and bus, car and earthmover tyres, and Shandong Yongtai Chemical Group, a major tyre manufacturer based in Northern China.
TIA’s Chairman Peter Smith commented, “This is a massive sea change for Covpress. It will help cement relationships for our customers and create further opportunities in China. In bringing this important deal to fruition the industry sector expertise and Chinese outbound investment experience of our advisers, Squire Sanders was invaluable”.
Squire Sanders’ legal team was led by corporate partner, Ed Dawes and included Birmingham-based partners Geoff Perry (corporate) and David Adams (banking) and Shanghai-based partner Dan Roules.
Ed Dawes said: “We’re delighted to have advised on this important acquisition which called for a combination of sector expertise, local knowledge and access, as well as knowledge and experience of complex China outbound investment arrangements.”