Cases & Deals

Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations participates in €1 billion (US$1.4 billion) French Pentagon PPP agreement

Client(s) Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations

Jones Day advised Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations in connection with the negotiation of a public-private-partnership (PPP) agreement with the French Ministry of Defense for a project considered to be the most important "building oriented" PPP ever developed in France. The 30-year partnership agreement between the French Ministry of Defense and Opale Défense SAS involves the financing, design, construction, operation, and maintenance of a 13.5 hectare site that will house the staff (Etats-Majors) and central services of the French Armed Forces.

Upon its completion in 2014, the "French Pentagon" complex will accommodate 9,300 employees on a single modernized site of 320,000 square meters. The complex will integrate the French Armed Forces' operational centers, IT networks, and catering services, and will provide residential space for 900 people, as well as facilities for press and conferences, childcare, and recreation.

Opale Défense SAS is jointly owned by Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations (34%), Bouygues Bâtiment Ile-de-France (16%), Exprimm (2.9%), Thalès Communications SA (6%), Sodexo France (6%), Dalkia France (2%), FIDEPPP (16.5%), SEIEF (16.5%), and OFI Infravia (0.1%).

The project also includes a transaction for the valuation of a real property referred to as "Corne Ouest", located at the Western end of the site, comprising approximately 90,000 square meters of office space. The principal investor of this aspect of the project is investment fund Development Venture III, managed by AXA REIM.

Project financing for the complex is insured, in addition to the shareholders' contributions, by a banking debt of €806 million contributed by Natixis, Dexia, BBVA, Société Générale, and CIC.

In addition to public law representation, Jones Day advised Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations on the antitrust, corporate, finance, and tax aspects of this project.