NEW YORK (August 2, 2011) — International law firm McDermott Will & Emery LLP represented Fila Korea Ltd., the owner of the Fila® brand globally, and Mirae Asset Private Equity, the largest private equity firm in Korea, in the acquisition of the Acushnet golf business from Fortune Brands, Inc. (NYSE:FO).
McDermott also advised on the acquisition financing, which included equity financing from Fila Korea, Mirae Asset, and other co-investors, as well as a senior bridge facility and a revolving credit facility from Korea Development Bank.
Established in Italy in 1911, Fila is a leading sport and leisure footwear and apparel brand that is distributed worldwide. Mirae Asset is the leading private equity firm in Korea and is responsible for introducing the first Korean private equity fund in 2004. Acushnet is the leading golf equipment company in the world; its portfolio of brands includes Titleist, the number one ball in golf and a leader in high-performance golf clubs, as well as FootJoy, the number one shoe, glove and performance outerwear brand in golf.
“We’re delighted to have advised on this landmark deal,” said McDermott partner Tom Conaghan. “We were able to bring forward the best that McDermott has to offer – global reach and broad substantive expertise – to assist two world class enterprises, Fila Korea and Mirae Assets, in acquiring the world’s number one golf equipment company, Acushnet.
“McDermott is honored to have been chosen to advise on a transaction of such significance,” said Paul Kim, co-head of the McDermott Korean Practice. “The transaction represents the first time a Korean private equity firm has acquired a leading global brand and the largest acquisition of a global consumer brand by any Korean company to date. We believe that this transaction is likely signals an acceleration in Korean-led M&A activity and will transform how Korean buyers are viewed by Wall Street and financial institutions worldwide.”
“This was also a significant transaction for the golf industry as a whole. We’re pleased that the McDermott team, with deep roots in Korea, was able to work successfully with our clients, Korean businesses and Korean government agencies to get this deal done on time,” said David Goldman, head of the McDermott Corporate Department. “As the global M&A market continues to expand, we believe McDermott is strategically, and geographically, well positioned to offer best-in-class corporate advisory services to our clients.”
McDermott’s Mergers & Acquisitions Practice Group represents a wide spectrum of publicly and privately held businesses, from Global 50 companies to venture backed start-ups, as well as private equity funds and investment banks. As a globally integrated team, the Firm’s lawyers manage complex transactions with components in multiple jurisdictions throughout the world. McDermott’s Korean Practice Group, co-led by In-Young Lee and Paul Kim, has for many years represented Korean and U.S.-based organizations and institutions in their inbound and outbound commercial activities worldwide. Members of the group have studied and trained in Korea and, accordingly, have a substantial knowledge of the legal and business culture of Korea.
The McDermott M&A team was led by Tom Conaghan, David Goldman and Paul Kim. The acquisition financing was led by partners Michael Boykins, John Hammond, Paul Kim and Seth Goldsamt. Lawyers from the Firm’s corporate, anti-trust, intellectual property, environmental, employee benefits and labor groups from the Firm’s Chicago, New York, London, Boston, Orange County, Washington, D.C., Brussels, Paris, Munich, Milan and Rome offices. Additionally, lawyers from MWE China Law Offices in Shanghai served as part of the deal team.
About McDermott Will & Emery
McDermott Will & Emery is a premier international law firm with a diversified business practice. Numbering more than 1,000 lawyers, the Firm has offices in Boston, Brussels, Chicago, Düsseldorf, Houston, London, Los Angeles, Miami, Milan, Munich, New York, Orange County, Paris, Rome, Silicon Valley and Washington, D.C., and a close strategic alliance with MWE China Law Offices in Shanghai.