George Weston is a partner in our Corporate practice group and advises on all aspects of BVI corporate and commercial law, including mergers and acquisitions, takeovers, downstream private equity investments, joint ventures, public and private share offerings, capital raisings, SPACs and business combinations, and corporate reorganisations. Although he works with clients in a wide range of industry sectors across the globe, George has particular expertise working with leading law firms and private equity investors on cross-border corporate acquisitions and joint ventures with a technology or real estate element, and leads our BVI hospitality sector group.
Prior to joining Harneys, George spent seven years in the London office of Paul Hastings, where he worked on a number of high profile corporate transactions and completed a secondment at JP Morgan Chase.
George's recent experience includes:
- Representing DXC Technology Company (NYSE: DXC) on its US$2 billion merger acquisition of Luxoft (NYSE: LXFT), the largest ever takeover of a publicly listed BVI company by transaction value.
- Acting as BVI legal counsel on the January 2016 merger of third-party logistics companies UTi Worldwide Inc and DSV in a US$1.2 billion public takeover of a listed BVI company.
- Advised a group of private investors on the reorganisation of their holdings in a UK PLC through the establishment of a new BVI joint venture company holding equity assets valued in excess of $1.5 billion.
- Advising a BVI incorporated e-commerce firm on its sale for approximately US$600 million.
- Representing the existing owner of a hotel chain on the disposal of majority ownership (through the issue of notes convertible into 51 per cent of its shares) to create a BVI joint venture with a potential value of more than US$1.2 billion.
- Acted for SOCAR and its wholly owned subsidiary Sermaye Investments Limited (SIL) on the repayment of a US$1.3 billion loan from Goldman Sachs International (GSI) to SIL, the repurchase acquisition of shares by SIL from GSI, and a corporate restructuring and refinancing with a new US$1.3 billion secured debt from a portfolio of lenders.
- Advising on a US$1.1 billion SPAC transaction involving a Latin American healthcare company and its business combination with a Cayman incorporated and Nasdaq listed SPAC.
- Advising Hyatt Hotels Corporation, the internationally renowned hotel chain, on the BVI aspects of its takeover of Two Roads Hospitality for US$480 million.
- Advised the global private investment firm Starwood Capital Group on BVI aspects of its US$250 million strategic investment in the hotel chain YOTEL.
- Advising LeniGas Cuba Limited on its reverse takeover of Knowlton Capital Inc by way of a BVI scheme of arrangement.
- Advised Road Town Wholesale Trading Ltd, a BVI-based retail and wholesale conglomerate, on the acquisition of 76.1 per cent of its issued shares by a wholly owned subsidiary of The North West Company Inc. The deal is believed to be the largest-ever M&A transaction involving a company operating and trading domestically in the BVI.
- Advised a hotel owner/operator on the disposal of a hotel chain held through several BVI vehicles for a consideration of approximately US$350 million.
- Advised Hyatt Hotels Corporation in relation to the acquisition of preferred shares (and related joint venture arrangements) in a BVI company owning a major hotel and resort in Latin America in a transaction valued at more than US$100 million.
- Representing an investor on a series of portfolio investments and divestments of UK property held through BVI companies and related financing arrangements for a total value of more than £200 million.
- Represented Polaris Infrastructure Inc., a Toronto-based company engaged in the operation, acquisition and development of renewable energy projects in Latin America, on its acquisition of 100 per cent of the issued and outstanding shares of Union Energy Group Corp., which is incorporated in the BVI in 2018 and on its 2020 refinancing through a facility provided by the Brookfield Infrastructure Debt Fund, a global credit-focused fund managed by Brookfield Asset Management Inc (NYSE: BAM).
- Advised iSmash, a high street technology repair service, on several fundraising rounds through its BVI incorporated holding company iSmash Group Limited, including on a significant investment from, and a commercial joint venture with, Sky in 2019.
George has authored a number of articles published in the specialist press, including in the Asian Business Law Review, Business Law Today, Practical Law Company Magazine, the British Tax Review and the International Financial Law Review. George is a member of the International Bar Association and the American Bar Association, and he serves as a director of BVI Finance (an industry group).
George is ranked as an up and coming lawyer for his BVI Corporate & Finance expertise. Clients say "his corporate and capital markets knowledge is fantastic and we can always expect thoughtful responses from him to any complex problems that arise."Chambers and Partners, 2021
George is recognised as a “next generation partner” in the British Virgin Islands Corporate and Commercial rankings. Clients describe George as "responsive, easy to deal with, and extremely knowledgeable on corporate matters."Legal 500, 2021
George is recognised as a “rising star” in the British Virgin Islands Corporate and Commercial rankings. Sources have said he is “a responsive and thoughtful lawyer who digs in and takes the time to understand and solve complex cross-border legal questions”.Legal 500, 2020
George is ranked as a “rising star”.IFLR 1000, 2020
George has been ranked for his BVI Corporate & Finance expertise. Peers agree he is an up-and-coming figure in the jurisdiction and "quite highly thought of" in the legal community.Chambers and Partners, 2020
- England and Wales (not practising)
- British Virgin Islands
- College of Law of England & Wales (LPC)
- Southampton Solent University (GDL)
- University of Southampton (BA)