Weil secures Houston energy partner from Simpson Thacher

Chris Bennett replenishes Texas energy ranks following departure of partner duo in Dallas

Chris Bennett Image courtesy of Weil Gotshal & Manges

Weil Gotshal & Manges has boosted its energy and infrastructure bench in Houston with the hire of a prominent partner from Simpson Thacher & Bartlett. 

Chris Bennett has joined the firm after a little more than 18 months at Simpson Thacher, which he joined from Latham & Watkins.

His hire replenishes Weil’s energy bench in Texas following the departure of partners Rodney Moore and Sam Peca for Winston & Strawn in Dallas last month and follows the hire of fellow energy dealmaker Omar Samji in Houston in April from Shearman & Sterling. 

“Chris’s experience advising on M&A transactions across the upstream and midstream oil and gas markets and related infrastructure projects will be an excellent complement to our energy practice,” said Michael Aiello, chairman of Weil’s global corporate department. 

Bennett advises public and private companies, private equity sponsors and other investors on corporate transactions across the energy and infrastructure industries, with a focus on the upstream and midstream oil and gas sectors. He counsels clients on high-profile M&A, dispositions and joint ventures and on the development and negotiation of related partnership, operating, processing and services agreements. He also advises on infrastructure projects and M&A adjacent to the energy industry and works with traditional energy companies and investors as they look to transition their business and reduce carbon emissions.

At Simpson Thacher, Bennett worked with clients including Angelo Gordon & Co and IMTT, with Bennett leading the team that advised the latter in the sale of its bulk liquids storage terminal in Gretna, Louisiana to BWC Terminals earlier this year. 

At Weil, Bennett has joined an energy team noted by legal directory Chambers and Partners for its work advising major upstream and mid-stream companies, portfolio companies and financial institutions on M&A, as well as its work handling joint venture agreements and bankruptcy proceedings in the sector. Standout work for the team includes advising Apergy Corporation in a Reverse Morris Trust acquisition of ChampionX from Ecolab, a deal that created an entity with a combined $7.4bn enterprise value.

“Weil has a sterling reputation,” Chris said. “I’m excited about the opportunity to work with some of our industry’s finest dealmakers helping to advise our global clients in the evolving energy and infrastructure sectors.”

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