Rita Ferreira dos Santos
“I am considered to be quick on my feet, with a wide spectrum approach to cases and ease in embracing new markets and business & practice areas, motivated by the needs of our clients and the market.”
Education and qualifications
Rita Ferreira dos Santos is a Consultant in the Lisbon office Banking & Projects department. She has over 20 years of experience providing legal advice on the full range of strategic development and financing of projects and deals, particularly in the infrastructure, energy, transport and health sectors.
Rita gained solid expertise in commercial contracts, concessions & public procurement, project financing, public-private partnerships, M&A and regulatory know-how.
She regularly provides legal advice to sponsors, lenders and awarding authorities in a wide variety of large projects, successfully and effectively serving domestic and international clients, both in Portugal and in cross-border projects involving Portuguese speaking African countries, such as Angola and Mozambique.
Rita has also gained relevant experience in bank lending across a variety of product areas and in pre-contractual administrative litigation.
In addition to transactional work, Rita advises foreign clients on a regular basis in matters of house-keeping and provides general advice on investment in Portugal.
Rita Ferreira dos Santos is recommended by Legal 500 in Projects and Project Finance and Energy and Natural Resources, and a recognised practitioner by Chambers in Project Financing & Energy.
Rita has advised clients in major, high-profile deals. These include advising or representing:
- Project Viriato – Advising on the vendor financing regarding the sale of the largest REO portfolio in the Portuguese market, including real estate assets located in Portugal and in Spain. Landmark deal in the Portuguese market due to its dimension (number of real estate assets involved) and multi-jurisdictional nature (2018)
- The Navigator Company Group - advising on the negotiation of commercial contracts with multinational contractors (Italy, Germany, Portugal, USA, Finland, UK) for a new tissue paper mill to be erected in Cacia, Portugal (2015/2018). Deal follows from advising on the negotiation of supply contracts for biomass plants in Cacia and Setúbal (2007/2008) and advising on the negotiation of an EPC contract and a maintenance contract with a Consortium formed by Portuguese and North American companies, for a CHP Plant which now forms part of the Group's new paper mill erected in Setúbal, Portugal (2007)
- Corredor de Nacala – Advising the international consortium of banks (African multilateral development bank; Japanese public financial institution, export credit agency and commercial bank; international financial institution member of the World Bank Group headquartered in Washington, DC; South African export credit agency and commercial bank) on the "Nacala Corridor" project, consisting in a railway line of 912 kilometers running through Mozambique and Malawi and a new coal port terminal in Nacala-a-Velha (Mozambique). The different sections of the corridor are developed by four different concessionaires, through five concession agreements in Malawi and Mozambique (2014/2018)
- BNP Paribas Clean Energy Fund / Glenmont Partners - Advising the sponsors (one of Europe’s largest fund managers focusing exclusively on investment in clean energy infrastructure, headquartered in London) on the acquisition of several photovoltaic power plants (46 MW) in Portugal, including advice on the licensing and negotiation of EPC, O&M and development agreements (since 2011)
- Refinancing of Iberwing wind Portfolio – Advising Iberwind on the refinancing of one of the largest wind portfolios in Portugal (2018)
- Refinancing of Neoen’s solar Portfolio in Portugal – Advising Neoen on the refinancing of its solar Portfolio in Portugal with a consortium of international banks (2017/18)
- Luz Saúde - Advising the sellers on the IPO of one of the largest private groups of integrated health services operating in the Portuguese market (2013/2014); advice on various operations of M&A involving the purchase / sale of healthcare units and / or corporates (2011/2014); advising the winning bidder on the tender for the award of the new PPP Loures Hospital Management Agreement (2003/2009) and afterwards advising the Concessionaires of the Loures Hospital on various aspects of implementation of the PPP project (2009/2012)
She started her legal career in 1999 as trainee-lawyer at a renowned law firm in Lisbon, subsequently working in the local law firm that then became the Lisbon office of Linklaters in 2002, as Associate. After a secondment in the Projects and Finance group of Linklaters London, she became Managing Associate in 2010 at Linklaters Lisbon. Since 2014 she acts in the capacity of Consultant in the Banking and Projects department of the Lisbon office.
Having developed her career in a leading global law firm, Rita has gained a profound understanding of cultural and business practices around the world.
Education and qualifications
Rita holds a Law Degree of the Faculty of Law of the Lisbon University. She then did an Advanced Postgraduate Course in Corporate Governance & Finance, followed by a Postgraduate Course in Health Law, promoted by the School of Law and the Institute of Health Sciences of the Catholic University of Portugal. She furthermore attended the Accounting and Finance Course for lawyers from the Catholic University of Lisbon.
She is a Member of the Portuguese Bar Association since 2001.
Furthermore, Rita is a Member of the Board of a public interest not for profit association, engaged in education and social support for children and the elderly.
She speaks Portuguese, English and German.
Topic: “Contractual structure of a PPP”