BOQ taps KWM on $1.35bn capital raising and acquisition

The firm offered its expertise in various practice areas, including M&A, IP and ECM

BOQ taps KWM on $1.35bn capital raising and acquisition

Bank of Queensland (BOQ) has tapped King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) to guide it in a $1.35bn capital raising linked to the bank’s acquisition of ME Bank.

The “transformative” acquisition provides BOQ with numerous benefits, with “ME Bank’s business delivering material scale, doubling BOQ’s retail bank and providing geographic diversification to the benefit of BOQ, its shareholders, customers and people,” the firm said.

“This is an exciting deal for BOQ.  The future of banking is increasingly digital, so the opportunity to leverage ME Bank’s digital assets and their potential to accelerate BOQ’s strategic objectives was pretty compelling,” said KWM lead partner Rhys Casey.

In line with the acquisition, BOQ is looking to raise about $1bn through an underwritten accelerated pro-rata non-renounceable entitlement offer. The raising also includes an underwritten $350m institutional placement.

The deal is subject to required approvals but is set to be completed by August, which marks the close of the bank’s financial year.

KWM leveraged its expertise in several practice areas for this transaction, including &A, banking, insurance, IT/IP, competition and ECM. Casey led the multidisciplinary team alongside partner David Friedlander, who heads up the firm’s public M&A group in Australia.

The partners received support from senior associates Jo Ruitenberg and Matt McKeown, as well as solicitors Tamara Akl, Samantha McDonald, Caroline Paskevich and Astrid Sugden. Competition law specialist and partner Simon Cooke covered the competition aspects of the deal, while financial services regulation veteran Kate Jackson-Maynes assisted on the regulatory aspects alongside Sam Farrell.

IP specialist partner Kirsten Bowe, who works with the M&A team, guided the client on the IT/IP aspects, while special counsel Mandy Tsang advised on the insurance aspects.

BOQ is a long-standing client of KWM, with the firm successfully advising the bank on capital notes offers and capital raisings in previous years.

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