Wachovia's announced sale to Wells Fargo today could prove to be a boon for BigLaw staples and a salvation for vulnerable local firms. Four days after Wachovia agreed to sell its banking operations to Citigroup for roughly $2.2 billion, Wells Fargo reportedly ponied up $15.1 billion in stock for the whole shebang—banking arm included. Citi’s now demanding that Wachovia call off the Wells Fargo deal while simultaneously considering increasing its original offer for Wachovia’s banking assets. Barring the success of either of these strategies, Citi will surely turn to its lawyers, who would be armed with the fact that Wachovia entered into an exclusivity agreement at the time of the original deal. Davis Polk and Skadden, which advised Citi in the now-shunned agreement, wait in the wings as the company’s execs weigh their options. Sullivan & Cromwell represented Wachovia in today’s deal (though September Subprime Superhero H. Rodgin Cohen was apparently not responsible this time), while Wachtell sat down on Wells Fargo’s behalf.
- posted by ben fuchs
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