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John E. Estes


John E. Estes

New York +1-212-558-4349+1-212-558-4349 +1-212-558-3588+1-212-558-3588
[email protected]

John Estes joined Sullivan & Cromwell in New York in 1995 and became a partner of the Firm in 2002. Mr. Estes focuses his practice on leveraged finance transactions and cross-border financing.

Mr. Estes has particular expertise in debt and equity capital markets transactions (SEC-registered and Rule 144A), acquisition finance, both for private equity and strategic, leveraged financings, secured and unsecured credit agreements, including revolvers, ABL and bridges, and high yield financings. His capital markets experience includes a variety of structured debt instruments, hybrid capital, convertibles and preferred stock, initial public offerings, secondary offerings and government privatizations. He has represented issuer and borrower clients in a variety of industries, including mining and oil & gas, telecommunications, financial institutions and industrial, as well as a number of underwriter and lender clients. Mr. Estes also has experience in private mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures and natural resource-based project finance.

Mr. Estes was resident in the Firm’s Melbourne, Australia office for more than 10 years and was the managing partner of the Firm’s Australian practice from 2005 to 2010. He returned to New York in 2010, and is co-head of the Firm's Credit and Leveraged Finance practice.


Mr. Estes has received recognition for his work by:

  • Best Lawyers in America
  • Chambers Global – U.S. and Australia
  • IFLR1000
  • The Legal 500 United States
  • The Legal 500 Latin America
  • Best Lawyers Australia
  • PLC Cross-border Capital Markets Handbook
  • PLC Which Lawyer? Yearbook
  • Asia Law & Practice: AsiaLaw Leading Lawyers


Acquisition Finance Mandates
  • Telstra Corporation Limited in its sale of a 70% stake in its directories business, Sensis Pty Ltd, to the U.S.-based private equity firm Platinum Equity for A$454 million (US$411 million) (2014)
  • Anheuser-Busch InBev in its $20.1 billion acquisition of the remaining stake in Grupo Modelo that it does not already own (2013)
  • GETCO Holding Company LLC in its $305 million notes offering and acquisition of Knight Capital Group under the new holding company, KCG Holdings Inc. (2013)
  • Rhône Capital in its financings related to its €1.05 billion acquisition of CSM NV’s bakery supplies business (2013)
  • Praxair, Inc. in its acquisition of NuCO2 Inc. from Aurora Capital Group for $1.1 billion (2013)
  • IntercontinentalExchange, Inc. (ICE) in its acquisition of NYSE Euronext for cash and stock valued at a total of approximately $8.2 billion (pending, 2013)
  • Veritas Capital in its $1.25 billion acquisition of the healthcare business of Thomson Reuters (2012)
  • United Rentals in its $4.2 billion acquisition of RSC Holdings Inc. (2012)
  • Barrick Gold Corporation in its C$7.3 billion acquisition of Equinox Minerals Limited (2011)
  • BHP Billiton on financing matters in connection with its $12.1 billion acquisition of Petrohawk Energy Corporation (2011)
  • The special committee of Southern Union Company on financing matters in connection with its $9.4 billion merger with Energy Transfer Equity, L.P. (2012)
  • Lightyear Capital in connection with financing its acquisition of Paradigm Management Services LLC (2012)
  • Billabong International Ltd. in connection with financing matters on its pending divestiture of Nixon Inc. (2012)
  • Tinicum Capital Partners and AMI Doduco in connection with its $140 million precious metals consignment facility used in connection with Tinicum’s acquisition of AMI Doduco (2010)
  • NRG Commerce on a vendor financing in connection with its acquisition by eBay (2011)
Leveraged Finance Mandates
  • Aurora Oil & Gas in its debut $200 million Rule 144A offering of high yield notes to finance development activities (2012) and subsequent $300 million Rule 144A/Reg S senior notes offering (2013)
  • HudBay Minerals Inc. in its unregistered $150 offering of unsecured senior notes (2013)
  • Minsur S.A., a Peruvian mining company, in its $200 million unsecured loan agreement (2013)
  • Vulcan Materials Company in its $800 million asset backed revolving credit facility (2011)
  • Fortescue Metals Group in over $12.0 billion of multiple high yield notes offerings to refinance outstanding debt and fund expansion initiatives (2006-2019)
  • CIT Group in its $15.8 billion exchange offer and consent solicitation of new Series C Second Lien Notes for outstanding Series A Second Lien Notes, the amend/extend transaction of its $4 billion First Lien Credit Facility and other refinancing matters, and several Series C Notes offerings to refinance outstanding debt (2010-2012)
  • JP Morgan in CEMEX’s multi-tranche exchange offer of $1.3 billion of secured high yield bonds for outstanding perpetual capital securities and its pending exchange offer of senior secured high yield bonds for outstanding Euro bonds and perpetual capital securities (2010, 2012)
Other Mandates
  • Representing Morgan Stanley and other initial purchasers in a $530.8 million senior secured notes offering and Credit Agricole and other lenders in a $500 million senior secured credit facility, each in connection with KKR’s acquisition and leaseback of certain PEMEX oil and gas infrastructure assets (2016) (LatinFinance Private Equity Deal of the Year, 2016; IJGlobal Latin America M&A Deal of the Year, 2016)
  • Representing the sponsors in connection with the $14 billion project financing of the Papua New Guinea LNG project (2010)
  • Representing a number of issuers and underwriters in connection with equity, debt, hybrid capital and privatization transactions, involving ANZ Bank, Asciano, Incitec Pivot, National Australia Bank, Myers and Woodside Petroleum
  • The lenders, led by Société Générale, Citibanamex and BBVA, in a $150 million credit facility provided to Servicios y Terminales de Tuxpan, S.A. de C.V. (Servitux) to fund in part the development of a liquid fuel storage terminal project to be constructed and operated by a KKR portfolio company, Monterra Energy, near the port of Tuxpan, Mexico (2019)