Pinsent Masons advises Fortescue Metals Group on £164m acquisition of Williams Advanced Engineering Ltd

26 Jan 2022 | 10:39 am | 1 min. read

Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons has advised Fortescue Metals Group Ltd (Fortescue, ASX: FMG) on the £164m acquisition of Williams Advanced Engineering Limited (WAE) from private equity firm EMK Capital and Williams Grand Prix Engineering Limited

Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons has advised Fortescue Metals Group Ltd (Fortescue, ASX: FMG) on the £164m acquisition of Williams Advanced Engineering Limited (WAE) from private equity firm EMK Capital and Williams Grand Prix Engineering Limited.

The acquisition of WAE will provide critical technology and expertise in high performance battery systems and electrification, enabling Fortescue to accelerate and support the decarbonisation of its mining operations. They have worked closely with WAE since early 2021, designing and building a prototype battery system to power an electric mining haul truck – an important first step in the decarbonisation of their mining haul fleet.

The Pinsent Masons team acting on the transaction was led by Andrew Hornigold and Lisa Early and comprised a multidisciplinary team, including advice on complex intellectual property issues from Gina Bicknell and George Campbell. The team worked closely with Fortescue’s in-house legal team to undertake detailed due diligence and lead on the acquisition negotiations.

It is one of the first the first transactions to be conditional on clearance under the new National Security and Investment Act 2021.

Commenting on the deal Andrew Hornigold said:

“This transaction, Fortescue’s first acquisition in the UK, showcases our ability to bring together cross border, multidisciplinary teams working with critical technologies in the highly topical field of electric vehicle battery research and development. It is very rewarding to be supporting our clients around the world in their drive for decarbonisation and to be working with some of the leading engineers in this important field. Given the cutting-edge nature of the WAE business, the transaction required cross sectoral collaboration between the specialists in our technology and energy teams. We look forward to seeing where this acquisition takes Fortescue in the future.”

The transaction is expected to conclude by the end of March 2022, subject to the satisfaction of customary conditions precedent including United Kingdom foreign investment approval.

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Andrew Hornigold

Andrew Hornigold

Partner, Head of Client Relationships - Technology, Science & Industry

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