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WFW advises Societe Generale on financing and delivery of vessel “Lech Kaczyński”4 April 2023

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Watson Farley & Williams (“WFW”) has advised Societe Generale on the financing and delivery of the 174,000 cbm Class LNG vessel “Lech Kaczyński” (the “vessel”) built and completed in December 2022 by Hyundai Heavy Industry Co., Ltd., South Korea.

The vessel is subject to financing by way of crédit-bail, partially backed by Export Credit Agency K-SURE (Korea Trade Insurance Corporation). The vessel is bareboat chartered to an affiliate of the Knutsen Group and sub-time chartered to a subsidiary of Polish multi-energy company PKN Orlen.

Societe Generale is one of the leading European financial services groups. Based on a diversified and integrated banking model, the group combines financial strength and proven expertise in innovation with a strategy of sustainable growth. Committed to the positive transformations of the world’s societies and economies, the bank is committed to supporting its clients in their sustainability transitions through dedicated solutions, and a commitment to contribute to sustainable finance with €300bn by 2025.

The cross-border WFW Finance team that advised Societe Generale was led by Paris Partners Philippe Monfort and Laurence Martinez-Bellet, supported by Associates Hugues Hounkpati, Lisa Tavlaridis and Vincent Cossavella. London Finance Partner Richard Smith assisted on the English law aspects of the transaction.

Philippe commented: “We are privileged to have advised Societe Generale on this complex cross-border transaction. It highlights their expertise in the shipping and energy sectors and their important role in promoting the global energy transition”.

Paul Taylor, Global Head of Maritime Industries at Societe Generale, commented: “We really appreciate the advice from Philippe, Laurence and the rest of the team at WFW on what was a highly complex and structured transaction. Societe Generale is happy to support a core client of the bank in the Knutsen Group and Poland in their shift towards alternative energy source in the current climate”.

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