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Vinson & Elkins Renewables Leader Relocates to Austin

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Vinson & Elkins LLP announced today that Kaam Sahely, head of the firm’s Renewable and Sustainable Energy and Infrastructure practices, will relocate to Austin, Texas, enhancing the group’s capabilities to serve clients in one of the nation’s clean technology centers.

“V&E closely follows prevailing market trends in energy and infrastructure and has been focused for a number of  years on our key clients in these areas. As a result, we have built a wide-ranging, market-leading renewable, clean energy and infrastructure practice,” Sahely said. “As a firm, we are helping forge the energy evolution. Based in Austin, I will continue to closely collaborate with clients and colleagues around the country and internationally.”

Sahely has deep experience in renewable and sustainable energy assets, power generation, traditional hydrocarbons and infrastructure assets. He has a nationally recognized renewables practice and regularly represents Goldman Sachs, the Carlyle Group (including its Renewable & Sustainable Energy Fund), Macquarie Group Limited, Sixth Street Partners and other investors in renewable energy and clean technology, energy and infrastructure matters. He is also working on landmark large-scale energy and infrastructure projects, such as the Dallas/Houston high-speed rail project and multiple multi-billion dollar gas monetization projects.

“Across the firm we are working with sophisticated investors, dynamic companies and gifted innovators to help them achieve their missions as they adapt to changes in market dynamics,” said Keith Fullenweider, co-head of V&E’s Corporate department. “The energy evolution provides V&E with an opportunity for growth, one that we are uniquely positioned to capitalize on with our experience spanning multiple practices.”

Sahely, who is ranked by Chambers USA 2020 as a Band 1 lawyer nationally in Projects: Power & Renewables and by Legal 500 U.S. 2020 in Project Finance, joins an already deep bench of Austin corporate and technology lawyers that includes office co-managing partner Milam Newby as well as partners Wes Jones, Paul Tobias and Wes Watts.

“We are excited about our position at the forefront of the energy evolution and the role that Austin plays in that,” Newby said. “Kaam brings a unique skillset to our team here that will help us seize additional opportunities in the market.”

V&E’s Renewable and Sustainable Energy practice has experience advising clients on the full life cycle of a renewables transaction, including initial fund formation, project development and financing, acquisition and sale of renewable assets and entities, the IPO of a renewable energy company, and environmental, labor and tax advice along the way. The firm has also established an Energy Evolution task force, which includes attorneys in the Austin, Dallas, Houston, New York, Washington, D.C. and London offices from the Energy Transactions & Projects, M&A/Capital Markets, Environmental, Tax and Finance practice groups, as well as individuals in firm management, to lead the charge toward a more sustainable future.

V&E also is a founding sponsor of Greentown Labs Houston. Greentown Labs, based in Boston, is the largest cleantech startup incubator in North America. More than 250 companies have gone through the Greentown Labs program, which provides promising cleantech startups with office space, lab space, mentoring and a variety of resources to establish and expand their companies. Greentown Labs recently announced it is opening a second location in Houston. V&E will serve as the go-to legal counsel and resource for Greentown Houston, providing pro bono legal services on a variety of corporate matters as well as matters associated with intellectual property, commercial contracts, tax, employment, and real estate. In addition, V&E will offer pro bono legal advice to each Greentown Houston member company.

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