Hogan Lovells Advises Ford of Britain in Relation to its £1.5 billion CO2 Reduction Project Financing

PARIS, 13 September 2010 - Hogan Lovells has advised Ford of Britain in relation to a £450 million loan to support Ford's planned £1.5 billion investment in low-carbon and environmentally friendly engine and vehicle technology investment over the next five years.  The loan was financed by the European Investment Bank ("EIB") and guaranteed in part by the UK Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills ("BIS").

This deal comes at a critical time for Ford and after a turbulent period for the automotive industry as a whole. The £450 million loan, part of the EIB's long-term economic development and clean transport investments, will allow Ford to invest in the research and development projects that improve fuel efficiency and reduce emissions with the manufacture of a new generation of low‑carbon engines for cars and commercial vehicles.

Ford's four UK engineering and manufacturing sites at Dunton, Dagenham, Southampton and Bridgend will benefit from the investment.  Currently, 25% of all Ford engines worldwide and over half of all Ford diesel engines are made in the UK.  Ford of Britain is the UK's biggest motor company, directly employing over 35,000 people around the country.

In support of the EIB loan, Ford has secured a £360 million guarantee through the UK government's Automotive Assistance Programme which comes under the European Commission’s temporary framework for State aid measures, which gives Member States additional scope to facilitate access to financing in the current economic and financial climate.

The Hogan Lovells team was led by partner Sharon Lewis, worldwide head of International Debt Capital Markets Practice Area, with senior associate Reza Mulligan and associate David Postlethwaite in Paris. The Hogan Lovells team in London was led by partner Paul Oldman, with senior associate Salam Bassilli. White & Case LLP's London office advised the EIB and Herbert Smith LLP in London advised BIS.

Commenting on the deal, Sharon Lewis said:

"Following the successful completion of the Ford of Romania financing, we are delighted to advise Ford of Britain, one of our long-standing clients, in relation to this innovative financing which forms part of Ford's ongoing European investment strategy. This deal showcases our recently-merged firm's capacity for delivering top quality advice and support on complex cross‑border transactions".


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