Rapidly plummeting oil prices dominated coverage of the energy sector in 2015 and continue to do so. The drop has reversed the fortunes of oil producers and exporters, but improved the position of importers. However, the broader energy picture continues to evolve. There are clear signals of major restructurings ahead, as the supply/demand relationship remains weak. This turmoil could also present some interesting M&A activity. On the alternatives side, there was strong growth last year to a new record of one-third of a trillion dollars. This came despite economic headwinds, lower input costs, and the strong dollar and weaker European economy, which had been a leader in renewable investment until now. Wind power installations are expected to be about level with 2015's record.
We represented the conflicts committee of Crestwood Midstream Partners LP in the merger of Crestwood Midstream and Crestwood Equity Partners LP into a single publicly traded partnership with a consolidated enterprise value of US$7.5B.
We advised Tall Oak Midstream, LLC on the sale of its subsidiaries TOM-STACK, LLC and TOMPC, LLC to a subsidiary of EnLink Midstream Partners, LP and EnLink Midstream, LLC for approximately US$1.55B. The two subsidiaries hold most of Tall Oak's Oklahoma assets.
We advised Hanwha Solar Holdings Co., Ltd. and Hanwha Q CELLS Investment Co., Ltd. on their acquisition of and merger with U.S.-listed Hanwha SolarOne Co., Ltd. to create a new global leader in solar power. The all-stock transaction was valued at approximately US$1.2B.
Our lawyers have represented Parker Drilling Company in a series of matters arising out of a Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) investigation into company practices. In 2010, purported shareholders filed a series of shareholder derivative cases against the company and its current and former officers and directors in state and federal court, alleging the officers and directors had breached their fiduciary duties by failing to ensure Parker's FCPA compliance. We secured dismissals in all of the cases. Following the dismissal, one of the original plaintiff shareholders sought books and records—including a privileged special committee report—from the company. The shareholder's stated purpose was to evaluate a claim to bring a further lawsuit in light of the ultimate resolution of the FCPA investigation by the company. Our client refused to provide any books and records and was ultimately sued in Delaware Chancery Court. In a precedent-setting result, the court denied the shareholder plaintiff access to all records and issued an estoppel order, preventing the shareholder from pursuing further litigation or records requests against the company.