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Kocian Solc Balastik and Havel & Partners Advise on First Search Fund Acquisition in Czech Republic

Kocian Solc Balastik and Havel & Partners Advise on First Search Fund Acquisition in Czech Republic

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Kocian Solc Balastik has advised Continuum Search Fund on its acquisition of exhibition stand manufacturers Best Expo and IRE — the first acquisition by a search fund in the Czech Republic. The sellers — entrepreneurs Hellen Berends and Petr Kotvas — were advised by Havel & Partners.

Search funds are vehicles enabling investors to provide capital to promising managers. According to KSB Partner Christian Blatchford, “in essence, the concept involves managers searching for, managing the acquisition of, and then running target companies with funding from private investors. The managers can also invest their own money. The managers’ equity stake will increase over time, and on the basis of the financial performance of the acquired companies."

Blatchford explained that, “since this was the first Czech deal, we had to engineer the implementation of these concepts using Czech corporate and contract law. I’d like to think that we found innovative and efficient solutions."

The KSB team was led by Partner Christian Blatchford and included Senior Associates Jan Beres and Ivo Prusa and Associates Tomas Zach and Jakub Porod.

The Havel & Partners team included Partner Vaclav Audes, Associate Veronika Filipova, and Junior Associate Monika Hospudkova.

Czech Republic Knowledge Partner

HAVEL & PARTNERS, attorneys-at-law, with offices in Prague, Brno, Bratislava, Pilsen, Olomouc, and Ostrava, has a team of 220 lawyers, tax advisors and 500 employees in total, is the largest independent law firm in Central Europe.

Our clients include large international companies, leading Czech and Slovak firms, including strategic state-owned companies and public sector authorities, as well as medium-size businesses, individual entrepreneurs, and investors. We advise approximately 100 of the Fortune 500 companies, and almost 50 of the Czech Top 100 companies. HAVEL & PARTNERS currently provides its services to a total of 2,000 clients. We have the most comprehensive international support available to both Czech and Slovak law firms. We provide legal and tax advice in 12 world languages in more than 90 countries around the globe. Up to 70 % of the transactions we deal with involve an international aspect.

HAVEL & PARTNERS was named the best law firm operating in the Czech Republic by the prestigious British rating agencies Chambers and Partners (2020) and Who’s Who Legal (2018, 2019). It is also the most successful law firm, providing the most comprehensive legal services in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, based on the total number of all nominations and awards in all years of the Law Firm of the Year awards. The firm became the absolute winner of this competition four times in the last six years, receiving the main award Domestic Law Firm of the Year in the Czech Republic (2015, 2017, 2018, 2020) and ranking as one of the most recommended law firms in all categories of law. Our company is also a three-time winner of the Law Firm of the Year award for Best Client Services (2015, 2016, 2019). In the field of M&A, HAVEL & PARTNERS is the best law firm in the Czech Republic based on the annual International Advisory Experts awards (2018, 2019). In Slovakia, it also won the prestigious global M&A Today Awards (2013–2018) for Mergers & Acquisitions six times in a row, and repeatedly won first place in the ranking by Lawyer International Legal 100 (2017, 2018). Prestigious international rating agencies EMIS DealWatch and Mergermarket have ranked HAVEL & PARTNERS among the leading law firms by the number of transactions completed in the entire CEE region since 2009. Based on annual awards of the Acquisition International magazine, HAVEL & PARTNERS has become the Law Firm of the Year 2019 in the M&A category in the CEE region.

Firm's website: https://www.havelpartners.cz/en/

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