COVID-19 INSIGHTS SERIES
Shearman & Sterling is hosting a series of podcasts to answer your COVID-19 questions, including the government’s responses, industry trends and the legal and business implications to the pandemic.
Regulators and law enforcement agencies are clear that businesses must maintain effective measures to prevent and detect financial crime even when faced with challenging circumstances. While the current pandemic may be a once in a lifetime event, many of the issues that organizations are grappling with can arise in a wide variety of situations. It has never been more important for businesses to implement robust policies and procedures that allow them to continue to meet their legal and regulatory obligations during periods of disruption and uncertainty.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) has impacted the UK and EU financial regulatory landscape, with regulators, central banks and supervisory authorities announcing quick and decisive measures in response to the pandemic.
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought Asia’s economic growth to a halt for the first time in 60 years, with different parts of the region experiencing different stages of the pandemic. This multifaceted discussion featured panelists Lorna Chen (Hong Kong-Investment Funds), Anna Chung (Seoul-Project Development & Finance) and Toshiro Mochizuki (Tokyo-Capital Market), as they addressed how Asian businesses are responding to present challenges and the outlook for recovery. Anthony Patten (Singapore-Project Development & Finance) moderated the panel, which took place at 8:30 am ET on April 30, 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected Latin America on every level imaginable, creating not only social ramifications, but also altering how business will be conducted in the region moving forward. We had a multifaceted discussion featuring panelists Antonia Stolper (New York – Capital Markets), Alexandro M. Padrés (New York – Project Development & Finance), Ximena Herrera-Bernal (London – International Arbitration) and Roberta Berliner Cherman (São Paulo – Capital Markets) as they addressed how the pandemic has affected Latin America within the context of their respective practice areas.
President Trump issued an Executive Order on March 27 requiring the General Motors Company to accept and perform contracts and fulfill orders for the manufacture and production of ventilators to treat patients afflicted with the COVID-19 virus. This action represents a departure from the most common use of the Defense Production Act (DPA), which involves government contractors that are well versed in the strict deadlines and other requirements imposed under these types of contracts and bid for these contracts on that basis. This action expands the normal application of the DPA to US businesses operating in sectors not normally considered subject to DPA authority.
COVID-19 has disrupted businesses around the world. Notwithstanding the impact to business suffering from the pandemic, do these events amount to a “material adverse change” for purposes of financing and M&A transactions? On this call, partners Michael Chernick (New York-Finance), Peter Hayes (London-Finance), Daniel Litowitz (New York-Mergers & Acquisitions) and Alan Goudiss (New York-Litigation) discussed the concept of material adverse change, as applied in financing and acquisitions transactions.
The CARES Act allocated $349 billion for the SBA to guarantee loans to small businesses under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). The PPP utilizes the existing framework of the SBA’s 7(a) loan program to make loans to businesses to incentive near-term employment. The U.S. Department of the Treasury and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) have released limited guidance on the PPP in the form of summaries, interim final rules and frequently asked questions.
On this call, partners Michael Chernick (New York-Finance), Marwa Elborai (London-Capital Markets), Peter Hayes (London-Finance) and Merritt Johnson (New York-Capital Markets) will discuss the state of the European and U.S. leveraged finance markets from both bank lending and capital markets perspectives.
For those with capital to spend, low commodity prices and market unrest has created opportunities to acquire assets and distressed companies, including acquisitions of asset packages, acquisitions of companies, and take-private transactions. On this call, Nathan Meredith (Dallas-Mergers & Acquisitions), Jeremy Kennedy (Houston-Project Development & Finance), Rob Freedman (New York-Project Development & Finance), John Beahn (Washington, D.C.-CFIUS) discussed considerations involved in these transactions.
On April 7, partners Barney Reynolds (London, FIA & FR) and Reena Agrawal Sahni (New York, FIA & FR) discussed financial regulatory impact of COVID-19 on the anking sector and developments across the United States, the United Kingdom and EU.
On April 2 at 8:30 a.m. ET, partners Gregory Tan (New York-Project Development & Finance), Iain Elder (London-Project Development & Finance), and Robert Freedman (New York-Project Development & Finance), along with Daniel Reich (New York-International Arbitration), discussed practical implications for projects, arising from the various government announcements, regarding supply chain disruptions, lock down and consequential actions to mitigate the current pandemic.
On this call, partners Doreen E. Lilienfeld (Compensation, Governance & ERISA-New York), Global Head of the Governance & Advisory Group, and Kristina Trauger (Capital Markets-New York) discussed key legal issues affecting public companies across all industries as a result of the pandemic.
On March 31, partners Jay M. Singer (Washington, D.C.-Tax) and Gillian Emmett Moldowan (New York-Compensation, Governance & ERISA) will discuss corporate tax and employee and executive compensation topics arising under the newly enacted CARES Act and related issues.