Maria Juliana Saa

Senior Counsel
Maria Juliana Saa

Overview

Maria Juliana Saa Hoyos is an attorney in Holland & Knight's Bogotá office. Ms. Saa Hoyos focuses her practice on the areas of corporate services, financial law, capital markets, bank investment and commercial law.

Ms. Saa Hoyos is involved in important financial transactions in Colombia, including designing and structuring new financial products and standard market products as mutual funds and private funds. She has extensive experience in drafting, negotiating and reviewing contracts, including loan agreements, share purchase agreements, factoring agreements, shareholder agreements and other corporate documents.

Prior to joining Holland & Knight as an associate, Ms. Saa Hoyos practiced as an associate in a law firm in Colombia and as a legal director for a brokerage firm.

Representative Experience

  • Advised Colombia's infrastructure development bank, Financiera de Desarrollo Nacional (FDN), and two other international banks as lead arrangers for the US$650 million financing of the Mar 2 project, part of Colombia's fourth generation (4G) road infrastructure plan; the financing included two tranches of 500 billion Colombian pesos and US$501.7 million; the Mar 2 project is a 254-kilometer toll road in Antioquia, Colombia, which includes the construction of 11 tunnels and 59 bridges
  • Advised FDN on the financing of the Costera Cartagena-Barranquilla project, part of Colombia's 4G road infrastructure plan, which included five tranches of debt totaling US$1.45 billion, including two series of international project bonds
  • Advised, under Colombian and New York law, FDN as provider of credit enhancement facilities in connection with the financing of the Alto Magdalena project, part of Colombia's 4G road infrastructure program
  • Advised FDN on the financing of the Perimetral Oriental de Bogotá project, a perimeter road corridor in eastern Cundinamarca, part of Colombia's 4G road infrastructure program; the debt financing package included a principal amount of US$156 million, a senior credit facility of $870 billion Colombian pesos and a subordinated liquidity facility of $45 billion Colombian pesos
  • Advised FDN on the financing of the Conexión Norte project, part of Colombia's 4G road infrastructure program; the project concessionaire received financing in two tranches, including a US$250 million credit facility, $520 billion Colombian pesos in the second tranche and an additional liquidity facility of $80 billion Colombian pesos
  • Advised, under Colombian and New York law, FDN as provider of a credit enhancement facility as part of the financing of the Ruta del Cacao project, part of Colombia's 4G road infrastructure program
  • Advised, under Colombian law, FDN as provider of a credit enhancement facility in connection with the financing of the Transversal del Sisga project, part of Colombia's 4G road infrastructure program
  • Advised, under Colombian and New York law, FDN on the financing of the Pacific 3 project; this was the first 4G financing to close, the first transaction with a liquidity facility granted by the FDN and one of the first international project bond issues in Colombia; the final structure included seven senior secured debt tranches; LatinFinance named the transaction "Best Road Financing" and "Best Infrastructure Financing" for the Andes region in 2016 and recognized Holland & Knight for its work
  • Advised a global investment manager focused on infrastructure and real estate on the sale and purchase agreement to secure a 50 percent interest in the 34-year Ruta Al Mar concession, which includes the design, construction, financing, operation and maintenance of a 491-kilometer highway in Colombia; the remaining 50 percent of the equity is held by the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor for the project, which is being developed as a private initiative 4G project, within the Colombian government's 4G program

  • Currently advising senior lenders in connection with the financing of a power transmission line, part of Colombia's Regional Transmission System
  • Currently advising a foreign investment bank in the refinancing of debt on two power transmission lines of the National Transmission System, to be structured through a private placement under New York law
  • Advised, under Colombian law, MUFG Bank Ltd. (MUFG) in the US$163.5 million long-term financing granted for the La Virginia - Nueva Esperanza national transmission line project; MUFG acted as lead arranger, lender, agent and hedging provider
  • Advised Financiera de Desarrollo Nacional (FDN) and Banco Davivienda S.A. in the financing of the Bosques de los Llanos 1 project, a 19.9 megawatt (MW) solar photovoltaic plant located in Puerto Gaitán, Meta

  • Currently advising the lenders that will grant a long-term credit facility to a reputable company in the education sector in Colombia to, among others, grow inorganically through the acquisition of new schools
  • Advised Tecnoglass under Colombian law in the financing granted by BBVA USA for approximately US$300 million to, among others, refinance its existing debt
  • Advised JPMorgan Chase and a group of 14 lenders in a US$200 million unsecured syndicated loan granted to Promigas S.A. and Gases del Pacífico S.A.C
  • Advised private energy developer Stoneway Capital Corp. on the structuring and placement of a $500 million bond under Rule 144A/RegS; the transaction was one of the first greenfield project bonds in the power generation sector to be issued in Argentina in more than 25 years; the transaction included a US$115 million loan from Siemens Finance for the financing of the structure (Siemens is the builder of the four financed projects) and an equity injection from the shareholders
  • Representation of a lender under Colombian law and New York law in connection with the financing of Regional Transmission System project to be developed in the Atlántico region in Colombia
  • Representation of Banco Davivienda S.A. in connection with New York aspects of the project financing for the power transmission line operated by Elecnorte S.A.
  • Representation of Infrared Capital Partners Ltd, a global investment manager focused on infrastructure and real estate, in the purchase and sale agreement to ensure a 50 percent stake in the Ruta al Mar concession, a 34-year concession for the design, construction, financing, operation and maintenance of a highway in Colombia; the remaining 50 percent of the capital is held by El Condor, the EPC contractor for the project; the Project is a 491-kilometer (km) road that is being developed as a 4G private initiative project within the 4G program of the government of Colombia; the purpose of the IP is to develop a fast and efficient primary route that connects two important economic centers in Colombia; the advice of Holland & Knight included the negotiation and the draft of the agreement to purchase shares and auxiliary documents
  • Representation of JP Morgan in the refinancing via private placement of the indebtedness of two transmission lines in Colombia developed by Grupo Ethuss

Credentials

Education
  • Universidad de los Andes, Specialization, Financial Legislation
  • Universidad de los Andes, Specialization, International Business Law
  • Universidad de los Andes, J.D.
Bar Admissions/Licenses
  • Colombia
Honors & Awards
  • The Legal 500 Latin America, Rising Star, Banking and Finance, 2021
  • The Legal 500 Latin America, Banking and Finance, 2019
  • Best Road Financing, Project & Infrastructure Awards, LatinFinance, 2016, 2017
  • Best Local Currency Finance, Project & Infrastructure Awards, LatinFinance, 2017
  • Best Infrastructure Financing for the Andes Region, Project & Infrastructure Awards, LatinFinance, 2016
  • Deal of the Year, Project Finance, Latin Lawyer, 2016
Spoken Languages
  • English
  • Spanish

Publications

Speaking Engagements

News