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Debt Finance

Today’s lenders face fierce competition and borrowers find difficulty in managing moving market terms. At Barnes & Thornburg, we excel in helping clients overcome the current debt market's lending and borrowing challenges. The hallmark of our debt finance practice is the combination of our breadth and depth of experience, which allows us to serve clients across the full spectrum of financing transactions available in today’s ever-changing market.

Our Debt Finance group consists of more than 35 finance and restructuring attorneys with deep experience representing banks, non-bank lenders, borrowers and private equity sponsors across all types of debt finance transactions. Our deep understanding of the market and commitment to efficiency and responsiveness enables us to provide streamlined solutions and quick execution tailored to the specific needs of our clients across four main verticals: Private Credit, Bank Finance, Venture Debt, and Specialty Finance.

Private Credit

Our exceptional skillset in private credit and direct lending is built on a foundation of thought leadership and experience. We work closely with a diverse range of clients, including lenders, investment funds, sponsors and borrowers (from small-scale startups to large, public companies), guiding them through every stage of their transactions. Our Private Credit team is comprised of frequent authors and speakers in their areas of expertise, and we are regularly contacted by the media to advise on trends in the space.

We assist our clients as they navigate the complexities of various loan structures, including first and second lien loans, unitranche financing, mezzanine facilities, annual recurring revenue loans, asset-backed financing, convertible debt, preferred equity investments, structured equity and beyond. We craft capital solutions customized to the needs of the parties, assisting lenders and borrowers in managing risks and addressing regulatory concerns. Whether we're representing borrowers or lenders, our comprehensive understanding of the private debt landscape ensures that we bring valuable insights to the table.  

Bank Finance

Our firm actively engages in traditional bank financing transactions, offering guidance to international, national and regional financial institutions across nearly all debt products, including asset-based lending (ABL). We advise banks on bilateral and syndicated credit facilities and ABL transactions spanning a wide variety of industries, asset classes and geographies. Our experience ranges from initial structuring to documentation, administration and refinancing.

Venture Debt

The Venture Debt team at Barnes & Thornburg is best-in-class in the industry. We primarily represent banks and non-bank lenders in various venture debt and growth capital transactions, demonstrating our role as thought innovators at the forefront of this specialized discipline.

Specialty Finance

Our Specialty Finance team brings keen finance skills to film, television and other media finance, franchisee finance, convenience and gas station finance, restaurant finance, fitness finance, hospitality finance, aviation finance, hospital finance, real estate finance, tax credit and tax incentive finance, equipment finance, Islamic finance, litigation funding, municipal bonds and public finance transactions, among others. We are well-versed in the challenges and opportunities encountered by banks, private investors and funds.

We are a single, integrated team across multiple disciplines delivering thoughtful solutions and market-driven knowledge to clients at every stage of the lifecycle of a debt transaction. Lenders turn to us for guidance on loan defaults and on how to protect their portfolios. Sponsors seek our assistance in special situations, credit bidding, debt-for-equity swaps and loan-to-own transactions, among others. We provide support to borrowers and other market participants during work-outs, “work-throughs”, forbearances, in- and out-of-court restructurings, bankruptcies and exits. 

Our team is consistently engaged in a wide variety of deals due to our ability to deliver right-sized work product on time and on budget. We also maintain strong relationships with industry leaders and keep a pulse on market trends across all our verticals. We offer tailored solutions that align with each client's goals and transaction objectives. Frequently we connect companies with capital providers, and introduce lenders to companies seeking financing.

Practice Leaders

Mushfique Shams Billah

M. Shams Billah

Private Credit Chair, Debt Finance Co-Chair

New York

P 646-746-2037

F 646-746-2001

Carolyn Hunt, Los Angeles Lawyer

Carolyn Hunt

Debt Finance Co-Chair

Los Angeles

P 310-284-3869

F 310-284-3894


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