Erika B. Paulino
Partner, Corporate and Commercial Group
Head, Data Compliance & Cyber Security
Co-Head, Projects & Energy
Co-Head, Restructuring & Insolvency
- University of the Philippines, Bachelor of Laws (2004)
- Ateneo de Manila University, A.B. Social Sciences (2000)
- Admission to Bar (2005)
Erika is a member of Martinez Vergara & Gonzalez Sociedad’s Corporate and Commercial Group, with special focus on Banking & Finance, Projects & Energy, M&A, Business Formation and Foreign Investment, Real Estate & Construction, and General Corporate. She co-heads the Firm’s Projects & Energy Practice Group, and heads the Firm’s specialized practices areas in Data Privacy & Security and Restructuring & Insolvency.
Erika has contributed most valuable work in the Firm’s recent transactions in the field of corporate and project finance. Having been exposed to this field since the start of her practice, she has represented arrangers, lenders, borrowers or project proponents in numerous high-value loan syndications, project financing, and corporate bonds and notes issuances. She has also been particularly active in the financing of renewable energy projects, acting as counsel to various proponents for their hydropower and solar power projects across the country.
In the field of Real Estate and Construction, Erika handled the real asset portfolio divestment of one of the largest global banks, and advised on the funding of projects to construct hotels, casinos, and residential subdivision developments.
Another practice focus is in M&A. Erika has advised on structuring, modes of investment and doing business in the Philippines, and post-acquisition transition/integration matters, involving specialized industries such as banking and financial services, and renewable energy. While acting as internal counsel to a major player in the Philippine oil and gas industry, she handled the completion activities relating to the company’s offshore acquisition, which involved the conduct of an offshore tender offer, acquisition financing, integration and transition.
Erika also has significant experience in the area of securities, where she handles debt and equity transactions, including private placements, initial public offerings, follow-on offerings, and placing and subscription transactions. She likewise regularly deals with equity-based employee benefit plans, from stock options and stock appreciation rights, to stock purchase plans, restricted stock units and other capital accumulation programs, especially those involving multinational corporations in respect of their Philippine legal vehicles.
Banking and Project Finance
- Acting as counsel to a special purpose company undertaking the development, construction, commissioning and operation of a 150MW solar plant in Northern Philippines for its Php4 billion senior secured notes facility, one of the first project financing transactions through the issuance of ASEAN Green Bonds by an issuer engaged in renewable energy exploration and development.
- Acting as counsel to the lead arranger and syndicate of banks for the financing extended to one of the largest water utility company operating in Southern Philippines to fund the modernisation of its nationwide water district projects in partnership with local government units.
- Represented a Japan-based investment bank in financing Inspire Brand Asia’s multi-jurisdictional acquisition of the Anytime Fitness Asia franchise.
- Advised Farallon Capital in the grant of up to US$210 million mezzanine facilities for the acquisition of Chevron Malampaya LLC.
- Acted as counsel to Udenna Corporation and its subsidiaries in the US$690 million facility granted to finance their acquisition of 100% of Global Gateway corporation, holder of the coveted leasehold right to the prime property development in Clark Global City.
- On-going acquisition of box and printing assets in the country owned and being operated by a multinational corporation.
- Acquisition of solar power companies in the Philippines by a Singapore-headquartered independent developer and manager of power and infrastructure projects.
Projects & Energy
- Acted as counsel to Citicore-Megawide Consortium, Inc. and Megawide Construction Corporation (PLC) under the limited recourse receivables discounting (LRRD) facility granted by The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation – Philippine Branch (HSBC), for its sale of up to Php1.2 billion receivables generated from its Build-Lease-Transfer contracts with the Philippine Department of Education.
- Acted as counsel to the syndicate of lender financial institutions in the Php400 million top-up by Land Registration Systems, Incorporated (LARES) under the Php8 billion syndicated credit facility granted to LARES for the purpose of refinancing its outstanding loan obligations incurred for the development, capacity expansion and augmentation of the computerization and modernization project of the Philippine Land Registration Authority.
Real Estate & Construction
- Advised on the funding of projects to construct hotels, casinos, and residential subdivision developments, acting as counsel to arrangers and lenders for the financing of the construction and development of a two-tower, 233-room four-star hotel and casino complex located in Clark Freeport Zone, Clark, Pampanga, Philippines, and to P.A. Alvarez Properties and Development Corporation, a real property development firm, in its maiden issuance of perpetual notes in the aggregate amount of P0 billion to fund the construction of its subdivision projects and land banking initiatives.
The Asia Pacific Legal 500
Banking & Finance 2021 – Next Generation Partner for 2 consecutive years (2020 - 2021)
Banking & Finance – Recommended Lawyer for 4 consecutive years since 2018
Real Estate and Construction 2021 – Recommended Lawyer for 2 consecutive years (2020 - 2021)
IFLR 1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms
- ‘Good quality work for a reasonable price.’ – IFLR1000 2021
- Member, Integrated Bar of the Philippines
- Member, UP Women's Law Circle
- Co-contributor, “Protecting Minority Investors in Philippines”, World Bank Group, Doing Business (2021 edition).
- Co-author, “Legal 500 Doing Business: Philippines Chapter” (2020 edition).
- Co-author, “LexisNexis Foreign Investment Law Guide: Philippines Chapter” (2017-2018 edition).