Tag: Trends

Americas Antitrust Review 2021

Covid-19 has made 2020 into a year like no other with ‘stay at home’ orders and working from home the new normal. Nonetheless, the tech and pharma industries continued to attract immense antitrust scrutiny, with daily reports in the media and pressure from politicians to address what some perceive to […]

IRS Releases Guidance on PPP Loans and Employee Retention Tax Credits

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has issued several items of new guidance relating to loans under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), including two new FAQs addressing the interaction of PPP loans and employee retention tax credits (ERTCs) in M&A transactions, a Revenue Ruling holding that expenses funded by PPP loans […]

Highlights from Cooley’s M&A Dealmakers Roundtable: SPACs!

On September 24, Cooley M&A partner, Garth Osterman, moderated a webinar on the current trend in going public: SPACs! Dave Peinsipp, co-chair of Cooley’s capital markets practice group and Rama Padmanabhan, a Cooley M&A partner participated in the webinar which focused on the current wave of SPAC activity and how […]

DOJ Issues Merger Remedies Manual as Both DOJ and FTC Step Up Efforts to Enforce Consent Decrees

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Antitrust Division issued a new Merger Remedies Manual on September 3, clarifying the analytical framework it is using to evaluate remedies that may address competitive harms stemming from proposed mergers and acquisitions, as well as from consummated mergers. In announcing the modernized Manual, Assistant […]

SBA Issues Guidance for Borrower Changes of Ownership

Over the last few months, dealmakers have worked creatively in M&A transactions to give borrowers of PPP loans the benefit of their bargain with the government—forgiveness of the loan—rather than treat the PPP loan as outstanding debt requiring discharge at closing (which would typically result in a further reduction in […]

Investment Funds Beware: Proposed HSR Amendments Would Increase Reporting Obligations

The US Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice announced proposed changes to the rules governing Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) filings that, if implemented, would significantly increase the number of transactions that must be reported to the antitrust agencies – primarily by private equity, venture capital and other investment funds – as […]

Drinks with the Deal: Cooley’s Jamie Leigh

Jamie Leigh, partner and co-chair of the M&A practice group, discusses advising tech and life sciences companies, her work for Mirror on its agreement to sell to Lululemon and how she’s staying sane in the pandemic on this installment of Drinks With The Deal, a podcast series hosted by David […]

10 Key Considerations for Going Public with a SPAC

It is a reasonable extrapolation – and we are nothing at Cooley if not wildly reasonable – that more operating companies are considering going public through a merger with a SPAC (commonly referred to as a backdoor IPO) since the beginning of time. There have been some great examples of […]

SEC Amendments to Financial Disclosure Requirements Provide a Welcome Reprieve for Carve-Out Transactions

As previously reported in this Cooley PubCo post, on May 21, the SEC adopted final amendments to the financial disclosure requirements for the acquisition and disposition of businesses. One change relating to the use of abbreviated financial statements stands out as a welcome reform for public or pre-public biopharma and […]

SEC Adopts Final Amendments for M&A Financial Statement Disclosure

Yesterday, once again without an open meeting, the SEC voted (with a dissent from Commissioner Allison Lee) to adopt amendments to the requirements for financial statements relating to acquisitions and dispositions of businesses.  According to the press release, the amendments are intended to improve disclosure of financial information, facilitate more […]

Social Distancing From a (Supposed) Life Partner: Early Lessons From Deals Terminated and On the Rocks in the COVID-19 Era

In “La La Land,” Damien Chazelle’s Oscar winning film, the audience thinks it has a formulaic Hollywood love story on its hands: boy and girl meet; boy and girl fall in love; boy and girl break up; and boy and girl get back together. But in a twist on the […]

Long-Term Focus: Preparing for Activism + Takeovers Amid COVID-19 Risks

Last week we cautioned that market volatility resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic could lead to increasing levels of shareholder activism and unsolicited takeover offers. Although the pandemic has raised countless new risks, companies remain vulnerable to activism attacks that focus on short-term objectives and opportunistic takeover bids stemming from the […]

Navigating Today: Public Company Hot Spots and M&A Negotiations with the Impact of COVID-19

With last Wednesday’s categorization by the World Health Organization of COVID-19 as a pandemic, schools, places of business and other venues throughout the United States quickly closed in-person locations and moved to remote connectivity as efficiently as possible. On Sunday, the governor of California called for all bars and nightclubs […]

CFIUS Update: Final Regulations Implement FIRRMA

The US Department of the Treasury has issued two final regulations implementing the Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernization Act of 2018. The final regulations broadly expand the jurisdiction of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States to review foreign investment transactions that implicate US national security concerns and […]

Cooley’s 2019 Tech M&A Year in Review

In the wake of record-setting volume and value metrics in 2018, practitioners eyed the 2019 deal market with healthy skepticism.  Despite a slight downward tick in momentum and overall deal statistics, 2019 remained a robust, dynamic and competitive market with tech deals outpacing other sectors in both volume and critical […]

Cooley’s 2019 Life Sciences M&A Year in Review

2019 was a banner year for billion-dollar life sciences M&A transactions. A wave of big-ticket transactions by global pharmaceutical companies drove life sciences M&A activity to its fourth-largest year on record in 2019, with aggregate deal value in the pharmaceutical, medical and biotech industry reaching $234.2 billion – almost double […]

Representation & Warranty (R&W) Insurance – Current Market Trends

Over the last decade the use of R&W insurance in merger and acquisition transactions has grown exponentially. From 2008 to 2018, the total R&W policies bound per year in North America rose from 40 deals, providing $541 million of coverage to 1500+ R&W insurance transactions, providing aggregate coverage of $38.6 […]

Taking a Play out of the Financial Acquirer’s Playbook

As the NFL season gets underway, it is interesting to see how certain plays go from fringe status to near-universal. A recent example is the “run-pass option” that, before finding a home in every NFL team’s playbook, was used only in high school and college football games. [1] Coaches survey plays […]

Use of Earn-Outs to “Bridge” the Valuation Gap

There’s an old saying, probably at some point attributed to Abraham Lincoln or Einstein, that a bridge shows no allegiance to either side. It’s a wonderful metaphor and one that dealmakers would be wise to remember when working to construct agreements to solve for divergent views on value. What two […]

Inadequate Cybersecurity and Data Privacy Due Diligence Alleged in Starwood Deal as UK ICO Fines Marriott $125M for GDPR Violations

On July 9, 2019, the UK Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) publicly announced its intent to impose a £99M (approximately $123M) GDPR fine on Marriott as a result of its acquisition of Starwood and the subsequent discovery and notification of a data breach at Starwood. While some may view this as […]

Dual-Track Processes: How to Turbocharge Your Exit

Exiting an investment is an inherently uncertain process. Even for a thriving business with a viable equity story, committed stakeholders and the right advisers, the final deal terms and valuation are typically guided by factors beyond a company’s control. These include prevailing market sentiment, current appetite for acquisitions in a […]

Top 10 Cross-Border M&A Trends across the Pond

In spite of a general environment of political and economic uncertainty and a daily sprinkling of stock market volatility, trade wars, sanctions, the U.S. government shutdown disrupting the market for IPOs, Brexit uncertainty, natural disasters and various other crises, cross-border M&A activity momentum continues. New records were attained in the […]

Breaking multiple records across the board

Cooley M&A partner Michal Berkner comments in Acquisition Daily on the active year in M&A dealflow. “Conditions continue to be ripe for high levels of cross border M&A activity in the months ahead – cash rich corporates, Private Equity and funds with unprecedented levels of dry power and ticking investment […]

The Cooley Outlook for 2018 M&A

What’s on tap for 2018 M&A? A recap of 2017 trends and the Cooley outlook on this year’s dealmaking: Buying Innovation: Retention and Non-Competes. For both old-line companies and tech giants, innovation is the name of the game. It is often difficult for large companies to foster innovation organically for […]

TechCrunch Equity Podcast: 2017’s Top Tech Acquisitions and What’s in Store for 2018

The January 12, 2018, edition of TechCrunch’s weekly venture capital-focused podcast, Equity, looks back at the past year’s M&A transactions and evaluates what’s in store for 2018. Cooley partner and co-chair of the firm’s M&A practice, Jamie Leigh, discusses 2017’s market uncertainty while predicting a more competitive and bold M&A […]

The Art of Drafting Milestones for an Earn-Out

Former stockholders of SARcode Bioscience were recently denied a claim that they were entitled to be paid $425 million in milestone payments under a merger agreement. The decision provides an anecdotal lesson in drafting milestones and suggests that the more technically prescribed milestones may be more difficult to meet, even […]

Non-Competes for California Employees in M&A Deals: Don’t Fudge It

Post-employment non-compete covenants are generally invalid in California, with certain limited but important exceptions like when a business or associated goodwill is sold and the buyer – as part of the deal – wants to prohibit certain sellers from competing with their former business. Consequently, buyers of California-based businesses generally […]

Martha Stewart Decision Draws Roadmap for Controller Sales to Third Parties

A transaction involving a controlling stockholder on both sides of the deal presents a clear conflict of interest that will result in heightened scrutiny under the “entire fairness” standard of review if later challenged. However, there is not always a conflict when the controller stands on just one side of […]

Chicago Bridge Reversal Reiterates Need for Consistent Accounting in Working Capital True-Up

The vast majority of private company acquisitions contain some type of purchase price adjustment to account for any changes in certain financial metrics (including working capital) of the target between a specified reference date (or target) and the closing date. For a variety of reasons (including the inability to predict […]

Monetizing an Earn-Out – Does That Make It a “Security?”

In life sciences/medical technology transactions, buyers and sellers often use milestone-based and sometimes royalty-based contingent consideration to compensate sellers for assets that are in various stages of development from clinical- to development-stage to product commercialization.[1]  In licensing transactions, there is an established secondary market through which licensors may monetize their […]

New Pubcos Should Consider Defensive Health in Light of ISS/GL Recommendations

ISS and Glass Lewis are continuing to apply special scrutiny to certain corporate governance provisions of “newly public” companies (generally, companies that have gone public in 2014 or later). See our December 2016 client alert. In short, the latest policies (which have evolved over the last few years) provide that […]

When Approval for a Drug “Indication” Gets Murky: Drafting Milestones to Avoid Disputes

According to a recent study by SRS of recent private life sciences deals, disputes over earn-outs arose in about one-third (36%) of all milestones that were expected to be hit by September 2016.[1] While most disputes were not about contract interpretation issues regarding whether an event triggered the milestone or […]

$2 Billion Purchase Price Dispute Over GAAP Compliance Highlights Need for Careful Drafting

Purchase price adjustments are common features (2015 SRS study: 77% of deals) of private merger agreements that are generally intended to ensure that the acquired company will have the same level of cash or working capital to operate the business post closing that it had at signing. However, if not […]

2017 M&A Trends Series: Negotiating Anti-Reliance Language

So far this year, deal parties are approaching M&A with cautious optimism. This series of Cooley M&A blog posts include some brief observations that offer some M&A highlights over the past year and our thoughts for the year to come. Negotiating Anti-Reliance Language Buyers continued to assert fraud claims in private […]

2017 M&A Trends Series: Appraisal Risks Factor High

So far this year, deal parties are approaching M&A with cautious optimism. This series of Cooley M&A blog posts include some brief observations that offer some M&A highlights over the past year and our thoughts for the year to come. Appraisal Risks Factor High In deals where stockholders have the right […]

2017 M&A Trends Series: Delaware Confronts M&A Litigation

So far this year, deal parties are approaching M&A with cautious optimism. This series of Cooley M&A blog posts include some brief observations that offer some M&A highlights over the past year and our thoughts for the year to come. Delaware Confronts M&A Litigation M&A deal litigation continues to plague most […]

SEC Announces Enforcement Action for Failure to Disclose Banker Fee Arrangements

On February 14, 2016, the SEC settled an enforcement action against CVR Energy for providing misleading disclosure about the fees payable to CVR’s two financial advisors in connection with CVR’s defense of a hostile tender offer by affiliates of Carl Icahn in 2012. The SEC did not impose any civil […]

2017 M&A Trends Series: Rep & Warranty (R&W) Insurance is Here

So far this year, deal parties are approaching M&A with cautious optimism. This series of Cooley M&A blog posts include some brief observations that offer some M&A highlights over the past year and our thoughts for the year to come. Rep & Warranty (R&W) Insurance is Here Previously, transaction insurance (or […]

2017 M&A Trends Series: Uncertain Times Cast Focus on Deal Certainty

So far this year, deal parties are approaching M&A with cautious optimism. This series of Cooley M&A blog posts include some brief observations that offer some M&A highlights over the past year and our thoughts for the year to come. Uncertain Times Cast Focus on Deal Certainty Public-target M&A deals and […]

2017 M&A Trends Series: Innovation Pressures Fuel M&A

So far this year, deal parties are approaching M&A with cautious optimism. This series of Cooley M&A blog posts include some brief observations that offer some M&A highlights over the past year and our thoughts for the year to come. Innovation Pressures Fuel M&A The WSJ has written about the rise […]

2017 M&A Trends Series: The Trump Effect

So far this year, deal parties are approaching M&A with cautious optimism. This series of Cooley M&A blog posts include some brief observations that offer some M&A highlights over the past year and our thoughts for the year to come. The Trump Effect How President Donald Trump will shape the regulatory […]

2017 M&A Trends Series: Cautious Optimism in the New Year

So far this year, deal parties are approaching M&A with cautious optimism. Over the next few days, we will run a series of Cooley M&A blog posts with some brief observations that offer some M&A highlights over the past year and our thoughts for the year to come. Cautious Optimism […]

Allergan Fined for Failure to Disclose Merger Negotiations with Third Parties During Hostile Bid

At what point do “discussions” with a friendly merger party become “negotiations” that are required to be publicly disclosed under the tender offer rules in response to a hostile bid? In a recent settlement of cease and desist proceedings against Allergan in connection with Valeant and Pershing Square’s well-publicized hostile […]

Why we Expect Private Equity to Invest More in Tech in 2017

With all the analysis on domestic and international political events and their potential impact on M&A trends, it’s easy to miss that 2016 represented the continuation of a meaningful paradigm shift in private equity. With increasing frequency, traditional private equity investors are focusing on tech. Even in the relatively slow […]

ISS and Glass Lewis Update 2017 Proxy Voting Policies

Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) and Glass Lewis (GL), the two most influential proxy advisory firms to stockholders of public companies, recently released updates to their voting policies in 2017, including updates to their policies on “newly public” companies that have adopted anti-takeover protection measures considered “adverse to shareholder rights.” Our […]

Corp. Fin. Posts New Guidance on Banker Fee Disclosure of Alternative Fees for Tender Offers

On November 18, 2016, the Staff of the Division of Corporation Finance issued two new C&DIs that address banker fee disclosures for tender offers on Schedule 14D-9. The new C&DIs clarify that disclosure is required of “all” material terms for compensation including the types of fees payable to the financial […]

Cybersecurity Diligence in M&A Transactions

Recently, in the midst of an M&A transaction involving Verizon and Yahoo!, news broke of a Yahoo! cybersecurity breach that had occurred approximately two years earlier. This event raised a lot of speculation around what effect the breach may have on the deal, including by how much it might change […]

Private Market Trends Snapshot 2016

M&A deal terms will almost always vary based on the specific context of the transaction, including the deal price, structure and each party’s negotiating leverage. Although no amount of data can replace context-specific analysis, data-driven decision-making continues to make its way into negotiations and can, under the right circumstances, provide […]

Options to Acquire: How these Creative Acquisition Strategies Differ from a Traditional Purchase

Creative acquisition strategies are offering both buyers and targets additional opportunities to grow their businesses through M&A. One strategy that we are seeing parties use is the “option to acquire” structure, which addresses both the needs of a target company to develop a product or business on the one hand […]

Top 10 M&A Developments and Trends for 2016

Here is a look back at the top M&A developments that affected deal-making last year and a look forward to our expectations for 2016.