Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP > San Francisco, United States > Firm Profile

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP
580 CALIFORNIA STREET
SUITE 1500
SAN FRANCISCO CA 94104 1036
United States

Finance > Restructuring (including bankruptcy): corporate Tier 1

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP offers a sizeable team, well versed in out-of-court restructurings, strategic transactions and distressed and special situations. Clients range from official and informal creditors’ committees and companies to institutional investors. The practice is led by the experienced Ira Dizengoff, renowned for his representation of bondholders, noteholders and hedge funds, across an array of sectors including media and entertainment, gaming, hospitality and health care. The team leverages its international offices, furthering its expertise on cross-border insolvency, restructurings and disputes.  The combination of knowledge from both the New York and London offices broadens its cross-border creditor side expertise. It represents clients such as Brooks Brothers, CEC Entertainment, Nordic Aviation and Dean Foods. Notable work includes its representation of Intelsat Jackson Ad Hoc Croup within the Chapter 11 cases of Intelsat S.A. and its affiliated debtors and debtors-in-possession relating to a total of $14.7bn in debt. Notable individuals assisting the case, alongside Dizengoff, include Scott AlberinoAbid Qureshi, Brad Kahn, Kate Doorley, Ben Taylor and Alex Antypas. All lawyers mentioned are in New York.

Practice head(s):

Ira Dizengoff

Other key lawyers:

Philip Dublin; Abid Qureshi; Michael Stamer; Meredith Lahaie; Brad Kahn; Edan Lisovicz; Zachary Lanier

Key clients

GTT Communications, Inc.

The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Purdue Pharma L.P.

An Ad Hoc Group of Unsecured Noteholders issued by Frontier Communications Corp

An Ad Hoc Group of Creditors of Intelsat Jackson Holdings S.A.

Franklin Advisers, Inc., as investment manager

The Official Committee of Opioid Related Claimants of Mallinckrodt plc

The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Sears Holdings Corporation

The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Diamond Offshore Drilling, Inc.

An Ad Hoc Group of Unsecured Noteholders of CBL & Associates Properties, Inc. and its subsidiaries

The First Lien Minority Group of J.C. Penney Co. Inc.

An Ad Hoc Group of First Lien Lenders of CEC Entertainment, Inc.

Ad Hoc Group of Secured Noteholders of Pacific Drilling S.A.

The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Brooks Brothers

The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Global Eagle Entertainment, Inc

The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Southern Foods Group, LLC formerly d/b/a Dean Foods

Ad Hoc Group of First Lien Lenders of Frontera Holdings LLC

Ad Hoc Group of Holders of 7.000% Senior Notes due 2025 of Aerovías de México, S.A. de C.V.

An Ad Hoc Group of First Lien Term Lenders of Limetree Bay Refining LLC

An Ad Hoc Group of Noteholders of HighPoint Resources Corporation

Restructuring Committee of the Board of Directors of Remington Outdoor Company, Inc.

Work highlights

  • Represented GTT Communications Inc in connection with the comprehensive restructuring of its businesses; including representation in negotiations with ad hoc groups of its secured lenders and unsecured bondholders.
  • Represented the official committee of unsecured creditors of Purdue Pharma, L.P. in building consensus regarding creditor allocations and abating the opioid crisis through a chapter 11 plan, overseeing structures for allocating value between litigation claimants, including issues regarding the use of class claims in bankruptcy cases.
  • Represented the ad hoc group of unsecured noteholders issued by Frontier Communications Corp. in the company’s $17bn chapter 11 cases.

Government > Government relations Tier 1

A leader in the lobbying and public policy spaces, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP maintains one of the country’s largest and diverse bipartisan practices in the market. The Washington DC-based team fields expertise from both lawyers and advisers who have both experience in elected offices, as senior staff members of Congress, and in the executive branch of the government. The public law and policy practice at the firm also maintains close relationships with regulators and lawmakers, offering clients a full wrap-around service encompassing legal support, strategy, and lobbying. Tax, trade, health, and financial services are a key areas of expertise for the team, as well as Native American law, energy, and environment. The practice is co-led by intellectual property and and international trade dispute expert Brian Pomper; and transport, tax, and technology specialist Hunter Bates. The team has seen continued growth during 2021, adding international trade, and health and food policy expertise to the already deep bench of individuals. The firm was active in assisting clients in the healthcare sector during and post COVID-19 pandemic, and a destination for companies navigating US/China international trade matters. Arshi Siddiqui has extensive political, private-sector, and policy experience, acting as counsel for both members of the House, and corporate clients before Congress. Ed Pagano is notable for their communications, technology, antitrust, and immigration reform expertise.

Practice head(s):

Hunter Bates; Brian Pomper

Other key lawyers:

Arshi Siddiqui; Ed Pagano; Jeff McMillen

Testimonials

‘Akin Gump’s regulatory affairs team is fantastic. They have close relationships with relevant lawmakers/regulators and are razor sharp. They have found great success on our behalf.’

‘Brian Pomper is super responsive, very smart and has excellent intuition.’

Key clients

Southeastern Conference (SEC)

National Independent Venue Association

National Thoroughbred Racing Association

NCTA – The Internet & Television Association

University of Louisville

Alliance for Automotive Innovation

Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO)

Innovation Alliance

Association of Mexican Tomato Growers

U.S. Chamber of Commerce

National Association of Theatre Owners

Business Roundtable

Keidanren

Work highlights

  • Advised the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA) in the introduction of the bipartisan bicameral Save Our Stages Act signed into law in December 2020 allocating $16bn in funding live music venues and theaters.
  • Representing a premier American college athletic conference in developing federal legislation to address the issue of compensation for student-athletes for issues including name, image, and likeness.
  • Advising a U.S. trade association that represents large racetracks, horse owners, breeders, trainers and affiliated equine associations in its advocacy efforts involving horse safety and track maintenance legislation via The Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act (“HISA”) (H. R. 1754).

Dispute resolution > International trade Tier 2

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP 'handles all trade matters with tremendous expertise and insight'. A worldwide force in international trade law, the US group forms part of an enviably broad global network that leans on well-staffed platforms in Beijing, Dubai, Geneva, Hong Kong, London and Singapore. Sources also reserve praise for its 'unusually strong depth of expertise', which is evidenced by its ability to cover the waterfront on trade issues, from trade policy and remedy matters, through to export controls and CFIUS work. Matthew Nicely is a go-to expert for trade remedies and policy and is leading the firm's representation of HMTX Industries, and over 6000 additional plaintiffs, in a marquee challenge to the US government's Section 301 tariffs on Chinese goods. Former Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Administration Kevin Wolf specializes in export controls and national security issues; he is highlighted by sources for his 'keen practical insights on how the government makes decisions'. Department head Thomas J McCarthy is 'a seasoned practitioner' and has an emphasis on export controls, CFIUS work and sanctions programs. CFIUS practice head Christian C Davis, customs lead Lars-Erik A Hjelm and trade litigator Bernd Janzen are also experienced names. Suzanne Kane, who sits in the customs practice, is an impressive up-and-coming partner. Named attorneys are based in Washington DC.

Practice head(s):

Testimonials

‘Deep knowledge of US Customs laws based on first-hand experience and successful resolution.’

‘The team that I work with is extremely responsive and hands on. Given their long-standing working relationship with our company, they know when to provide guidance and when to defer to our business team. It’s a real time and money saver.’

‘They work well together and with other law firms when I employ more than one firm on important projects/cases.’

I am working with specific partners and I am very happy with them, especially that they are constantly thinking and adjusting to get the best result.’

‘The practice handles all trade matters with tremendous expertise and insight. We have asked for assistance on Sec. 301 duties on Chinese parts imports, Sec. 232 steel tariffs and filing exclusion requests, USMCA matters, and Sec. 337 disputes. Akin Gump is largely responsible for a successful resolution of a Sec. 337 dispute between two South Korean battery manufacturers.’

‘The team has an unusually strong depth of expertise. It has Kevin Wolf, a former government official who literally “wrote the rules” for export controls and has keen practical insights on how the government makes decisions. It is supplemented by a deep team, including those who have worked the most challenging problems like State Department Consent Agreements.’

‘Thomas McCarthy is a seasoned practitioner who provides practical advice on navigating the DDTC and Anne Borkovic has strong technical chops in IT and other areas essential to export controls.’

‘Stand-out partners include Stephen Kho, Sarah Kirwin, and Suzanne Kane. Stephen, Sarah and Suzanne are our 24/7 team on all matters USMCA and lead the successful effort to resolve the Sec. 337 dispute. Their strategy led to the best possible outcome, saving jobs and production plans for our flagship product.’

Key clients

Advanced Drainage Systems (ADS)

Alimentary Group DCOOP S. COOP. (DCOOP)

Associations of Mexican Tomato Growers

Blueberry Coalition for Progress and Health

Business Roundtable

Cornerstone Building Brands

Datasite

Eastman Chemical Company

Gilead Sciences, Inc.

Government of British Columbia

HEB Grocery Company, LP.

HMTX Industries LLC

Johnson & Johnson

Maersk, Inc.

MSC Mediterranean Shipping Company SA

NIKE, Inc.

Raytheon Technologies Corporation

Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA)

Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd.

UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation

United Parcel Service Co.

Volkswagen Group of America

World Wide Packaging

Work highlights

  • Represented HMTX Industries, and more than 6000 additional plaintiffs, in challenging the US government’s Section 301 tariffs on Chinese goods — constituting one of the largest groups of related cases ever brought before the US Court of International Trade.
  • Secured three wins regarding solar panel imports at the US Department of Commerce and the US Court of International Trade on behalf of NextEra, Solar Energy Industries Association and Invenergy.

Industry focus > Education Tier 2

At Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, the education practice is now led by Michael Vernick and has a strong dispute resolution background across Title IX matters and misconduct issues. Based in Washington, DC, the practice works closely with its global investigations and compliance group on complex litigation and internal investigations for universities and healthcare sector clients. The team is also active in cyber security and data issues. Counsel Marta Thompson, who joined the team from Hogan Lovells US LLP in July 2021, has a specialism representing higher education institutions in foreign influence investigations. In New York, Estela Diaz handles investigations in relation to misconduct and is a credited Title IX investigator.

Practice head(s):

Michael Vernick

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

Tulane University

Rice University

Southern Methodist University

Southeastern Conference

Work highlights

  • Represented Tulane University in federal court against a putative class of students seeking tuition and fee refunds due a shift to online learning caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Advising Southeastern Conference, a top collegiate athletic conference, to develop and pass federal legislation addressing the high-profile issue of compensation for student-athletes based upon name, image and likeness.

Industry focus > Energy transactions: oil and gas Tier 2

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP’s oil-and-gas transactional practice is led by the experienced John Goodgame, who is well regarded for strategic and capital-raising transactions in the energy sector. The firm’s broad engagement in the area includes matters involving oil and gas, petrochemicals, liquefied natural gas, coal, utilities, renewables and energy transition matters on behalf of public and private companies, sponsors, portfolio companies and management teams and investors from upstream to down. A key name in the team is David H. Sweeney, whose expertise ranges from exploration, production and processing to infrastructure and monetization; both he and Goodgame are based in Houston.

Practice head(s):

John Goodgame

Other key lawyers:

David Sweeney

Key clients

Diamondback Energy, Inc.

Yorktown Partners LLC

7-Eleven, Inc.

Golar LNG Partners LP

Genesis Energy L.P.

Laredo Petroleum, Inc.

Viper Energy Partners LP

Pacific Drilling

Amberjack Capital Partners LLC

EP Energy

PJSC LUKOIL

Crestwood Equity Partners LP

Rattler Midstream LP

Schlumberger / Schlumberger New Energy

HighPoint Resources Corporation noteholders

Apache Corporation

Approach Resources Inc.

Tailwater Capital LLC

ENR Partners II LP

San Isidro Energy Company II, LLC

Grenadier Energy III, LLC

Tapstone Energy Holdings, LLC

Viper Energy Partners LP

Work highlights

  • Represented long-time client Diamondback Energy, an independent oil and natural gas company, in various M&A, capital markets and finance transactions over the past year; aggregate value approixmately $10bn.
  • Represented funds managed by Yorktown Partners in connection with the $2.7bn merger of one of its portfolio companies, Indigo Natural Resources, with Southwestern Energy Company.
  • Represented the conflicts committee of the board of directors of midstream-operator Golar LNG Partners, in its $1.9bn sale to global energy-infrastructure company, New Fortress Energy.

Industry focus > Native American law Tier 2

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP has great experience in acting for tribes, and is overseen by Donald R Pongrace  in Washington, DC. An experienced group of practitioners who previously served in federal agencies including the Interior Department and the National Indian Gaming Commission, the team advises tribal governments on sovereignty issues, economic development, and has a specialism in land and water rights settlements. Allison Binney, who previously served as chief counsel to the U.S Senate Committe on Indian Affairs is the key contact for defending tribal government before tribal courts and federal agencies on land, tax, and gaming matters. Senior counsel Katie Brossy  is also recommended, as is Merrill Godfrey, who handles high-stakes litigation for Indian tribes across the United States. The practice also focuses on assisting tribal clients on diversifying their business away from casinos to renewable energy projects and accessing emerging markets in South America. For economic issues, Jason Hauter is the name for development on American Indian lands, particularly water resource and management. Brette Pena joined the group from the U.S District Court- Oklahoma Northern Circuit.

Practice head(s):

Donald R Pongrace

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

Gila River Indian Community

Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians

Penobscot Nation

Ho-Chunk, Inc.

AMERIND Risk

San Manuel Band of Mission Indians

Gila River Telecommunications, Inc.

Work highlights

  • Advising the Gila River Indian Community on addressing the ongoing drought in the Colorado River Basin through the development of unique, innovative water use agreements and arrangements that benefit the entire region and the Gila River Indian Community.
  • Advising the Pechanga Band with respect to the acquisition of access to an increased water supply to support development on tribally owned land. The engagement has included representation of the Band before federal, state and local entities.
  • Represented the Gila River Indian Community in protecting the Arizona gaming compact for all tribes from an effort by a single Arizona tribe to violate the compact by creating an off-reservation gaming casino in the Phoenix metropolitan area.

Media, technology and telecoms > Media and entertainment: transactional Tier 2

A go-to firm in Los Angeles for financial investors in film, television, and digital media, the team at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP advises its clients on complex transactions including M&A and joint ventures. Chris Spicer leads the practice, counselling companies additionally on distribution and production matters in the US, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East. His colleague Marissa Román Griffith guides both established and new market players through complicated transactions. With Vanessa Roman the team includes a specialist on single project loans and credit facilities in the entertainment sector. Additionally, Alissa Miller is an expert on transactions between independent movie production companies and financial institutions. Further recommended for his expertise in digital distribution is associate Christopher Maddox. John Burke has retired from the firm.

Practice head(s):

Christopher Spicer

Other key lawyers:

Marissa Roman Griffith; Alissa Miller; Vanessa Roman; Christopher Maddox

Key clients

American Film Institute

Bank of America, N.A.

CIT Bank

City National Bank

Comerica Bank

Content Partners

East West Bank

JPMorgan Chase Securities

Media Rights Capital

MUFG Union Bank, N.A.

Portfolio Funding Company

Truist Bank f/k/a SunTrust Banks

XYZ Films

Work highlights

  • Advised PFC in its January 2021 bankruptcy court approved settlement with the creditors committee and the estate of The Weinstein Company LLC.
  • Advised JPMorgan in the refinancing of Amblin Partners’ JPMorgan-led revolving credit facility, in connection with Amblin Partners’ renewed multiyear partnership with Universal Pictures, and the ongoing administration of such new facility.
  • Advised Quorn Foods in negotiating a multiyear business partnership spokesperson agreement with the globally recognized entertainer Drew Barrymore who will serve as the brand’s first-ever “Chief Mom Officer” (CMO).

Dispute resolution > Appellate: courts of appeals / Appellate: supreme courts (states and federal)

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP‘s group consistently appears before the US Supreme Court as well as state and federal courts of appeal. At the Supreme Court level, the firm is recognized for its presence in human rights-related matters, demonstrated by its recent involvement in cases dealing with immigrant communities, Native Americans and LBGTQ+ rights. The group is additionally well known for its strength in IP, health, labor and restructuring-related issues. Pratik Shah has argued 15 cases before the Supreme Court and is noted for his specialist expertise in IP, regulatory and Native American law matters. James E. Tysse is also a senior name; in a high-profile win in the Eleventh Circuit, he acted alongside co-counsel at Harvard Law School and the Center for Constitutional Rights to successfully represent the families of eight members of the Indigenous community in Bolivia who were among unarmed civilians massacred by military forces in 2003. Julius Chen is noted for his focus on administrative and constitutional law, financial restructuring, IP and Native American tribes. The group was bolstered in 2021 with the arrival of San Francisco-based senior counsel Aileen McGrath, who joined from the San Francisco City Attorney’s Office, where she served as co-chief of appellate litigation. Named attorneys are based in Washington DC unless stated otherwise.

Practice head(s):

Key clients

Starbucks Corporation

Google, Inc.

McDonald’s

Gila River Indian Community

The Coca-Cola Company

Comcast Cable Communications

FirstEnergy Solutions Corp.

America’s Health Insurance Plans

The Beer Institute

Janssen Pharmaceutica, N.V.

Space Exploration Holdings, LLC (SpaceX)

Chamber of Commerce of the United States

Sorenson Holdings

Seneca Nation

Inguran

Penobscot Nation

XY, LLC

National Football League (NFL)

Horseracing Safety & Integrity Association

Rand Construction Corp.

Work highlights

  • Successfully represented Bolivian families in groundbreaking and high-profile human rights appeal in the Eleventh Circuit that preserved a $10m jury verdict.
  • Secured a major patent law victory in the Federal Circuit for Janssen Pharmaceutica NV, which included fending off an inter partes review challenge to a Janssen patent associated with its multibillion-dollar schizophrenia treatment.
  • Represented Antonio Arteaga-Martinez, a noncitizen who fled to the US and sought withholding to escape gang persecution in his home country, before the US Supreme Court.

Dispute resolution > Corporate investigations and white-collar criminal defense

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP’s white-collar defense and government investigations department acts for financial institutions, broker-dealers and private investment funds, as well as senior executives. It has particular experience in securities and commodities matters, and in investigations and enforcement issues. Washington DC’s Charles Connolly is a name to note for financial fraud, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) issues, Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) matters, corruption and anti-money laundering; he heads the team alongside Michael Asaro and James J Benjamin, Jr. Ian McGinley joined from the US Attorney’s Office for the SDNY in September 2021, whilst Doug Maynard left for an in-house role at GTT Communications. Attorneys are based in New York unless otherwise stated.

Practice head(s):

Charles Connolly; Michael Asaro; James Benjamin

Other key lawyers:

Claudius Modesti; Paul Butler; Karen Christian; Katherine Goldstein

Key clients

Morgan Stanley

Deutsche Bank

Eastman Kodak Company

BlueCrest Capital Management

Cobra Acquisition LLC/Mammoth Energy

Christopher Jordan

Arthur Hayes

Christophe Rivoire

Morgan Stanley

Deutsche Bank

Eastman Kodak Company

BlueCrest Capital Management

Cobra Acquisition LLC/Mammoth Energy

Morgan Stanley

Deutsche Bank

Eastman Kodak Company

BlueCrest Capital Management

Cobra Acquisition LLC/Mammoth Energy

Work highlights

  • Represented the Special Committee of Eastman Kodak Company’s board of directors in connection with the recent investigations related to trading and stock options grants in advance of a public news announcement.
  • Represented BlueCrest Capital Management in investigations by the SEC and CFTC regarding alleged conflicts of interest, disclosure and related alleged misconduct in the management of client assets.
  • Representing Cobra Acquisition LLC/Mammoth Energy and its senior executives in a criminal investigation by the US Attorney’s Office for the District of Puerto Rico and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) relating to $900m worth of contracts awarded to the company for the restoration of electricity in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria.

Government > Government contracts Tier 3

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP stands out for its high-end transactional work. In particular, the firm excels at advising infrastructure, project development and public-private partnerships for domestic and international public and private sector clients in public procurements and contract negotiations. Representing large contractors in the technology, aerospace, and defense sectors, the team is adept at representing clients in False Claims Act matters and investigations, as well as providing due diligence and compliance counselling. The team is under the new leadership of Michael Vernick, who is notable for his education sector expertise, particularly in FCA litigation and internal investigations. Policy specialist Angela B Styles and private equity specialist Scott Heimberg are key members of the team. Marta Thompson joined the team in 2022 from Hogan Lovells US LLP, and regularly represents clients in government investigations involving federal grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements. Susan H. Lent is also a name of note in the team, particularly for infrastructure projects. All practitioners are based in Washington DC.

Practice head(s):

Michael Vernick

Other key lawyers:

Angela Styles; Scott Heimberg; Susan H. Lent; Elise Farrell; Thomas McLish; Marta Thompson

Key clients

Al Sahraa General Transport and Clearance

Allegiant Air

American International Contractors, Inc.

Ampere Computing

Apollo Global Management

Bahrain Maritime & Mercantile International (BMMI)

Brightline Holdings LLC

Carlyle Investment Management

City of Houston

CoreCivic

Elliott Investment Management

Ericsson

Gojo Industries

Houston Airport System

HPI

Keolis

KEWA Financial Inc.

Mammoth Energy

Maryland-National Capital Park & Planning Commission

NEOM

New Castle County Government

Nordam Group

North American Transit Alliance

Owl Rock Capital Partners

Philips Electronics North America

Port of Long Beach

Primeflight Aviation Services

Raytheon Technologies Corporation

Rochester-Genesee Regional Transportation Authority

Solano Transportation Agency

Toshiba International Corporation

Transportation Corridor Agencies

Workhorse Group, Inc

Work highlights

  • Represented Workhorse Group in protesting a $3.1 billion contract that the U.S. Postal Service awarded for the manufacture of Next Generation Delivery Vehicles.
  • Representing Al Sahraa General Transport & Clearance (ASG) in a litigation against the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) arising from a termination for default.
  • Advised Mammoth Energy in a Congressional inquiry into the restoration of Puerto Rico’s electrical grid following Hurricane Maria.

Industry focus > Energy: renewable/alternative power Tier 3

Led from Houston by Matt Kapinos, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP has a strong reputation acting on behalf of sponsors, commercial and investment banks and other financial institutions, private equity funds, contractors and developers on the development, financing, and M&A work associated with domestic and international renewable power projects throughout the value chain. Renewable energy tax credit advice and alternative power project acquisition and finance deals are the core areas of activity for the department, which is based between Texas and California. Kapinos primarily focuses in the energy and infrastructure sectors, handling a range of project development, M&A and strategic joint ventures in the renewable power space. Based in Los Angeles, Dan Lynch is best known for his experience in project finance matters. The department was impacted by the recent departure of a number of key partners including John Marciano to Allen & Overy LLP.

Practice head(s):

Matt Kapinos

Other key lawyers:

Dan Lynch; Shariff Barakat

Key clients

Excelsior Renewable Energy Management Co.

Tennessee Valley Infrastructure

Tokyo Gas America Ltd.

JERA

NextPower

The Stream Companies

Investment fund formation and management > Alternative/hedge funds Tier 3

With seasoned practitioners Stephen Vine and Prakash Mehta at the helm, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP remains a go-to advisor for innovative start-ups in the hedge fund space; in conjunction such clients, the firm recently established Fund in-Formation – a comprehensive, online resource which provides investment managers with a platform and structure for intelligent decision making and increased efficiency. The group is also noted for representing private fund managers focused on credit investing and creating cutting-edge structures to address liquidity and tax issues. The spring and summer of 2021 marked a period of growth for the team, with Brian Daly (formerly of Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP), John Hamilton (formerly of Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young, LLP) and Terence Rozier-Byrd (formerly of Baker Botts L.L.P.) arriving to join the practice heads at the New York office.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Vine; Prakash Mehta

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘Overall, a highly knowledgeable results-oriented team that gets the job done well and in a timely fashion.’

 

Key clients

Blackstone Alternative Asset Management LP

Aksia LLC

Strategic Value Partners

Venor Capital Management LP

Summit Rock Advisors

Work highlights

    Investment fund formation and management > Private equity funds (including venture capital) Tier 3

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP is known as a destination firm for emerging market funds work; Prakash Mehta has been instrumental in the firm’s expansion into Asia, and currently oversees the India practice, as well as acting as joint leader of the investment management group. His counterpart, Stephen Vine, focuses exclusively on private investment funds and their managers, and provides expert advice on the gamut of fund formation and capital raising issues. Both co-heads are based in the New York office, which saw significant team growth in the spring and summer of 2021 following the arrival of of seasoned attorneys Brian Daly from Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP and Terence Rozier-Byrd from Baker Botts L.L.P., bringing additional transactional, regulatory and operational expertise to the offering. Dennis P. Pereira  is another key member of the team, with particularly strong fundraising expertise. Other areas of strength for the offering include credit funds, secondaries and institutional investor representations.

    Practice head(s):

    Stephen Vine; Prakash Mehta

    Other key lawyers:

    Fadi Samman; Eliot Raffkind; Blayne Grady; James Deeken; Ann Tadajweski; Brian Daly; Dennis P. Pereira; Terence Rozier-Byrd

    Testimonials

    ‘Overall, a highly knowledgeable results-oriented team that gets the job done well and in a timely fashion.’

     

    Key clients

    BentallGreenOak

    Brightwood Capital Advisors

    Crossplane Capital

    BlackRock

    Crestline Management, L.P.

    PAAMCO Prisma

    BHMS Investments, LLC

    Angelo, Gordon & Co.

    Crayhill Capital Management

    Work highlights

    • Advised Crossplane Capital – a Dallas-based private equity firm which targets control investments in niche manufacturing, value-added distribution and industrial business services companies – on the closing of its inaugural fund, Crossplane Capital Fund, at its $275m hard cap.
    • Represented BlackRock in the backing of a new $1.1bn Kohlberg & Company secondaries fund.

    Labor and employment > Labor and employment disputes (including collective actions): defense Tier 3

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP has notable experience in class and collective actions, often representing large corporations from the retail, food and drink, sports and services industries. The team, which is led by Washington DC-based Bob Lian, acts in wage and hour class actions, labor issues and Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) disputes. Supporting these efforts is Daniel L Nash, a recognized litigation lawyer, with arbitration and litigation specialists Stacey Eisenstein and Esther G Lander also noted in Washington DC. In charge of the Los Angeles office is Gregory W. Knopp, who has experience in PAGA claims. Donna Mezias in San Francisco is a key contact for California labor and employment matters. Gary McLaughlin departed in September 2021 to Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp LLP.

    Practice head(s):

    Bob Lian

    Other key lawyers:

    Key clients

    National Football League

    Walmart Inc.

    Starbucks Coffee Company

    The Home Depot

    Vallourec Star, LP

    Deloitte Consulting LLP

    Work highlights

    • Secured the denial of a class certification on behalf of the NFL in a nationwide putative class action.
    • Successfully defended Starbucks in claims for unpaid work.
    • Successfully defended Home Depot against a wage and hour class action.

    Labor and employment > Workplace and employment counseling Tier 3

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP handles complex and sensitive legal problems, from nationwide wage and hour class actions and equal employment opportunity (EEO) disputes to complex labor controversies and high-profile arbitration proceedings. The team is led by Washington DC–based partner Bob Lian, who deals with complex employment litigation, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) matters and whistleblower work. Lauren Leyden in New York has represented hedge funds, food producers and private equity funds in high-value acquisitions and restructurings.

    Practice head(s):

    Bob Lian

    Other key lawyers:

    Lauren Leyden; Richard Rabin; Daniel Nash

    Key clients

    Marvell Semiconductor

    The Michaels Companies, Inc.

    National Football League

    Starbucks Coffee Company

    The Home Depot

    Vallourec Star, LP

    Quanta Services, Inc.

    Work highlights

    • Representing Marvell Semiconductor, Inc. in connection with all employment aspects of multiple recent acquisition and sale transactions, among other matters.
    • Advised the Dean Foods Official Committee on the employment aspects of the chapter 11 cases of Southern Foods Group, LLC formerly d/b/a Dean Foods and its affiliated debtors and debtors-in-possession.
    • Advised the Frontier Ad Hoc Group on employment aspects of the chapter 11 cases of Frontier Communications Corp. in the Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

    M&A/corporate and commercial > Corporate governance Tier 3

    M&A/corporate and commercial > Shareholder activism Tier 3

    Based in New York, the experienced team at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP assists high-profile investment funds and large companies with a wide range of matters, such as takeover preparedness, campaigns and activism-related litigation and investigations. Practitioners also handle activism defense for public companies. Kerry E Berchem leads the team, which includes key litigator Douglas A. Rappaport. Jeff Kochian and Gerald Brant joined Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP in late 2021.

    Practice head(s):

    Kerry E Berchem

    Other key lawyers:

    Key clients

    Alden Global Capital LLC

    Baker Bros. Advisors LP

    Indaba Capital Management, LP

    Scopia Capital

    Starboard Value, LP

    Inclusive Capital Partners

    Ides Capital

    Media, technology and telecoms > Cyber law (including data privacy and data protection) Tier 3

    Based in San Francisco and Dallas, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP‘s cybersecurity, privacy and data protection practice particularly stands out for its breadth, and is regularly sought out by companies needing to update their privacy policies in connection to the California Consumer Privacy Act, seeking representation in privacy and cybersecurity disputes, including data breach class actions as well as assistance in government and internal investigations. Regulatory advice and compliance are also strong areas, alongside transactional work. Natasha Kohne in San Francisco is an expert in the retail, health, financial services and energy sectors and co-heads the department together with Michelle Reed in Dallas, who specializes in privacy and security risk assessments and procedures to mitigate privacy and cybersecurity threats. Jo-Ellyn S. Klein is a key contact in Washington DC.

    Practice head(s):

    Natasha Kohne; Michelle Reed

    Other key lawyers:

    Jo-Ellyn Sakowitz Klein

    Key clients

    Altice

    Apollo Global Management

    Principal and co-founder of BitMEX

    BentallGreenOak

    CenterPoint Energy

    ClearBalance

    Eastman Kodak Company

    Endava plc

    FireEye Inc.

    Franciscan Health

    Helen of Troy Limited

    Hydro Flask

    Metro New York

    NTT Global Data Centers

    RagingWire

    Starboard Value Acquisition Corp.

    The Vanguard Group

    USA Waste-Management Resources, LLC

    Vivial

    VIZIO

    Work highlights

    • Representing Altice USA, Inc. in a putative class action in the Southern District of New York arising from a November 2019 data security incident.
    • Representing ClearBalance in multiple consumer class actions in California state and district courts related to a recent data breach that occurred in March 2021.
    • Representing a national cotton association to assist in the launch of its U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol.

    Antitrust > Merger control Tier 4

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP focuses on securing merger clearance for complex, multi-stage transactions, including those requiring regulatory and antitrust clearance in multiple jurisdictions. The practice handles merger review and investigations by the DOJ and FTC, and also litigates effectively, notably representing Peabody Energy in the FTC’s case against its merger with Arch, a high-level involvement for accomplished antitrust litigator Gorav Jindal. Areas of strength for the firm include energy, financial services, electronics, and retail. Practice head Corey Roush  has litigated before the DOJ and FTC, and continues to lead on high-value deal clearances, representing 7-Eleven in securing FTC clearance for its $21bn acquisition Speedway, as well as notably securing clearance without a Second Request for Kingston Technology’s sale of its HyperX division to HP. Former FTC official Haidee L. Schwartz offers significant insight to clients on the agency’s strategies as well as providing support on merger clearances and investigations. Counsel Brian Rafkin joined from Dechert LLP in June 2021 and specializes in defending companies in litigated merger challenges. All attorneys mentioned are in Washington DC.

    Practice head(s):

    Corey Roush

    Key clients

    7-Eleven, Inc.

    Peabody Energy Corp.

    Services Group, Inc.

    US Concrete, Inc.

    Kingston Technology Company, Inc.

    MNG Enterprises, Inc.

    Work highlights

    • Represented 7-Eleven in its $21 billion acquisition of Speedway from Marathon.
    • Advising Services Group, Inc. in its $240 million sale to Superior Plus Propane, a subsidiary of Superior Plus Corp.
    • Represented US Concrete in the company’s $1.3 billion sale to Vulcan Materials.

    Dispute resolution > General commercial disputes Tier 4

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP is well versed in disputes in connection with investment funds, hedge funds and financial restructuring. Its client portfolio further sees a range of national corporations, which the firm can support from several offices. Team leader Stephen M. Baldini in New York also is a key contact for private equity and hedge funds in their contentious matters, while the Dallas-based M. Scott Barnard takes on business torts, fraud actions, and commercial contract disputes. Los Angeles’ Neal Ross Marder is noted for his consumer class action know-how. Anthony T. Pierce from the Washington DC and Seamus C Duffy in Philadelphia are also highlighted.

    Practice head(s):

    Stephen Baldini

    Other key lawyers:

    Key clients

    American Medical Response, Inc. (AMR)

    Eastman Kodak Company

    Integra Connect, LLC

    Comcast Cable Communications

    USA Waste-Management Resources, LLC

    Antech Diagnostics, Inc.

    Transportation Corridor Agencies

    Washington Metropolitan Area Transit (WMATA)

    Tulane University

    Altice USA

    AT&T Corp.

    National Football League

    Mammoth Energy

    Space Exploration Technologies Corp.

    Talos Energy

    Work highlights

    • Defeated a motion for class certification filed by leading plaintiffs’ firm Lieff Cabraser on behalf of California Comcast customers, challenging Comcast’s Broadcast TV and Regional Sports Fees as deceptive and unfair, and seeking classwide damages estimated at over $1bn for the seven-year proposed class period.
    • Secured a critical victory for AMR in successfully opposing class certification in a high-stakes matter with more than $100m in potential exposure.
    • Secured a significant victory for AT&T following a decade-long battle in Delaware Chancery Court involving lawsuits relating to 13 AT&T partnerships when the Court issued an opinion denying most of one partnership plaintiffs’ material breach claims and awarding them less than $40,000 of the $260m in damages that they sought.

    Dispute resolution > Securities litigation: defense Tier 4

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP is highly regarded for representing leading financial institutions and public companies, including private investment funds, broker dealers, and public accounting firms, in private litigation arising under the federal securities and commodities laws, as well as related investigations and enforcement proceedings. The firm’s securities litigators regularly collaborate with its market-leading hedge fund and private equity fund advisory practice to handle cutting-edge litigation issues, such as short-swing trading claims for investment funds. Practice head Stephen M. Baldini in New York led the defense of a special committee of Eastman Kodak directors in investigations related to trading and stock options grants in advance of a public news announcement that the company had entered into a letter of interest concerning a loan from the United States Development Finance Corporation (DFC). M. Scott Barnard and Michelle Reed in Dallas also play key roles in the practice.

    Practice head(s):

    Stephen Baldini

    Other key lawyers:

    Scott Barnard; Michelle Reed

    Key clients

    Eastman Kodak Company

    Talos Energy, Inc.

    Martha Carnes And John W. Somerhalder II (ongoing)

    MFA

    Arthur Hayes

    Cyrus Capital Partners

    Jeffrey Smith, the CEO of Starboard Value LP

    Kennedy Lewis Investment Management LP

    Domenic J. Dell’Osso, Jr. and Bryan J. Lemmerman

    Cimarex Energy Co. / Resolute Energy Corp.

    Centerbridge Partners, L.P.

    Diamondback Energy, Inc.

    Conflicts Committee of Regency Energy

    Tandy Leather Factory

    Fred’s Inc.

    The Energy & Minerals Group

    Brenda R. Schroer

    Work highlights

    • Represented the Special Committee of Eastman Kodak Company’s board of directors in connection with investigations related to trading and stock options grants in advance of a public news announcement that the company had entered into a letter of interest concerning a loan from the United States Development Finance Corporation (DFC).
    • Representing Talos Energy Inc. and its board of directors in connection with a stockholder derivative and class action complaint filed on May 29, 2020, in the Delaware Court of Chancery.
    • Representing directors in a putative securities class action in connection with SunCoke Energy Partners, L.P.’s (SXCP) merger with SunCoke Energy, Inc. (SXC). SXC and its sponsored master limited partnership subsidiary, SXCP, supply high-quality coke for the blast furnace production of steel under long-term, take-or-pay contracts that pass through commodity and certain operating costs to customers.

    Finance > Capital markets: debt offerings Tier 4

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP remains best known for its work in the energy sector with strong capital markets specialists in Houston and Dallas, though with the further growth of the New York office it is developing its spread of engagements across a number of industries, most notably through New York partner Rosa A. Testani. The capital markets group has a particularly strong record in high-yield debt and in transactions linked to refinancings, liability management and corporate restructuring exercises. Houston partner John Goodgame is co-head of the securities practice and an experienced figure in energy sector capital markets offerings, including those by master limited partnerships (MLPs). Dallas partners Garrett DeVries and Seth Molay are also key names, along with Christine B LaFollette in Houston.

    Practice head(s):

    John Goodgame; Zach Wittenberg

    Other key lawyers:

    Rosa Testani; Garrett DeVries; Seth Molay; Christine B LaFollette

    Key clients

    Diamondback Energy, Inc.

    Genesis Energy L.P.

    Cinemark USA, Inc.

    CEC Entertainment, Inc.

    Cinemark Holdings Inc.

    Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC

    7-Eleven, Inc.

    Laredo Petroleum, Inc.

    El Paso Electric Company

    Fossil Group, Inc.

    Fortress Transportation and Infrastructure Investors

    Work highlights

    • Represented Diamondback Energy, an independent oil and natural gas company, in several senior notes offerings totalling $4.6bn.
    • Represented 7-Eleven, Inc., in a series of transactions, including its $10.95bn senior notes.
    • Represented CEC Entertainment, Inc. in connection with its $650m offering of 6.750% senior secured notes due 2026.

    Finance > Capital markets: high-yield debt offerings Tier 4

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP is noted for high-yield debt offerings linked to acquisition financings for M&A and private equity transactions. The firm’s traditions in the energy sector also bring it a number of high-yield debt engagements, as does its prominence in restructurings. Entertainment is another key sector for the team. Houston partner Christopher Centrich is experienced in high-yield debt offerings in the energy sector. Dallas partners Garrett DeVries and Alan Laves are also key names, along with New York’s Rosa A. Testani.

    Practice head(s):

    John Goodgame; Zach Wittenberg

    Other key lawyers:

    Christopher Centrich; Garrett DeVries; Rosa Testani; Alan Laves; Katie Dinett

    Testimonials

    ‘Insight, understanding and knowledge of capital markets instruments distinguishes Akin Gump. I have done many HY capital markets transactions and would consider the folks at Akin to be among the best.’

    ‘Responsiveness and detailed understanding and knowledge of the specifics of each instrument and interaction with the other instruments we have in place is what distinguished Alan Laves and Katie Dinett from the others I have worked with in the past. They were fantastic to work with, making my job easier, and giving me comfort that we were addressing all the issues related to each instrument.’

     

    Key clients

    Genesis Energy L.P.

    Cinemark USA, Inc.

    CEC Entertainment, Inc.

    Laredo Petroleum, Inc.

    Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC

    Fossil Group, Inc.

    Work highlights

    • Represented Genesis Energy L.P., a diversified midstream master limited partnership, in a series of senior unsecured notes offerings cumulatively valued at $1bn.
    • Represented Cinemark USA, Inc., a leader in the motion picture exhibition industry, in a series of high-yield debt offerings cumulatively valued at $1.5bn.
    • Represented CEC Entertainment, Inc., the family dining business, in its $650m offering of 6.750% senior secured notes due 2026.

    Industry focus > Sport Tier 4

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP is particularly known for its strong expertise in assisting professional sports teams, leagues and organisations with complex labor and employment issues and litigation. In a recent highlight, the group represented the NFL in a nationwide putative class action brought by retired players for injuries allegedly caused by the use of painkillers and other prescription drugs during their playing careers. Washington DC-based Daniel L Nash, who is especially sought after to represent professional sports clients in high-profile arbitration and court cases, leads the practice.

    Practice head(s):

    Daniel Nash

    Key clients

    National Football League

    Major League Soccer

    Monumental Sports

    Harris Blitzer Sports and Entertainment

    Southeastern Conference

    National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA)

    Coalition of Professional Minor Hockey Leagues

    Minor League Baseball (MiLB) Clubs

    San Francisco 49ers

    Work highlights

    • Assisted the NFL with the defeat of a class certification in a nationwide putative class action brought by retired players for injuries allegedly caused by their use of painkillers and other prescription drugs during their playing careers.
    • Assisted the NFL in securing a victory in the 5th Circuit, which agreed that a state-law tortious-interference claim brought against the NFL was preempted by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act 1974.
    • Represented the NTRA and affiliated horse racing associations in securing passage of the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act, which passed the House unanimously in 2020.

    Intellectual property > Patents: litigation (International Trade Commission) Tier 4

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP‘s ITC practice operates as an integral part of the firm’s wider patent litigation service, making the group an interesting choice for clients seeking one-stop-shop representation. The group is able to secure favorable verdicts and appellate wins at the ITC, PTAB as well as in federal court. Its bench of practitioners offers technical and scientific backgrounds which keep attracting renowned players from the technology, manufacturing and electronics sectors. The firm’s main ITC experts are Washington DC duo Cono Carrano and David Vondle.

    Practice head(s):

    Other key lawyers:

    Key clients

    3M Company

    Green Tank Technologies Corp.

    PMI Global Services

    Synaptics Incorporated

    Work highlights

    • Representing 3M as a third party in an ITC Investigation
    • Assisting Phillip Morris International as a respondent in an ITC investigation in briefing to the Commission and the Presidential Review Period.
    • Representing Greentank Technologies Corporation, who was named as a respondent in a Section 337 complaint filed at the ITC by Shenzhen Smoore Technology Limited.

    Antitrust > Civil litigation/class actions: defense Tier 5

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP sports an antitrust and competition practice that encompasses the representation of companies from a variety of industries in both class actions and multi-district litigation. Corey Roush heads the department with extensive experience in the antitrust space with regular involvement in bet-the-company cases. Pharmaceuticals, chemicals, energy, technology, and consumer goods are among the sectors handled by Haidee L. Schwartz, while the expertise of C. Fairley Spillman extends to the intersection of antitrust with intellectual property. All mentioned attorneys are based in Washington DC.

    Practice head(s):

    Corey Roush

    Key clients

    Peabody Energy Corp.

    Houchens Industries, Inc.

    Mars, Inc./Antech Diagnostics, Inc.

    NTT Global Data Centers Americas, Inc. f/k/a RagingWire Data Centers, Inc.

    Norwegian Seafood Council (NSC)

    Gucci

    Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation

    7-Eleven

    Work highlights

    • Secured a successful result for Antech Diagnostics, Inc., the reference laboratory division of VCA Inc. (which is part of Mars Inc.), in a putative antitrust class action that spanned nearly three years.

    Finance > Commercial lending Tier 5

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP has a solid debt finance practice, which works closely with its restructuring and bankruptcy practice assist with debtor-in-possession financings and Chapter 11 cases. On the lender side, the firm focuses on assisting alternative lenders such as investment funds, while the borrower practice has a client portfolio that includes numerous energy and construction companies. The New York office is home to corporate practice co-head Zachary Wittenberg, in addition to Scott Welkis and Meng Ru. John Goodgame leads the Houston team.

    Practice head(s):

    Zach Wittenberg; John Goodgame

    Other key lawyers:

    Key clients

    True Religion and its debtor and non-debtor affiliates

    Certain funds managed by GSO Capital Partners LP and certain funds managed by Blackstone Tactical Opportunities

    Advisors L.L.C.

    New Mountain Capital, LLC

    Global Eagle Entertainment, Inc. Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors

    Kennedy Lewis Investment Management

    Francisco Partners Management, LLC

    CEC Entertainment

    GoldenTree Asset Management

    Intelsat Jackson Ad Hoc Group

    Goldman Sachs

    The Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Purdue Pharma LP.

    Diamondback Energy, Inc.

    Viper Energy Partners LP

    U.S. Concrete, Inc.

    Genesis Energy L.P.

    Laredo Petroleum, Inc.

    The ad hoc committee of Weatherford International plc

    Oaktree Capital Management

    Ad Hoc Group of First Lien Lenders of Foresight Energy LP

    Vista Credit Partners

    Blue Water Industries LLC

    Work highlights

    • Represented Kennedy Lewis Investment Management in a series of financial transactions.
    • Represented long-time client Diamondback Energy, Inc. as a borrower in its $1.6bn revolving credit facility.
    • Represented U.S. Concrete, Inc. as borrower in a $300m ABL facility.

    Intellectual property > Patents: litigation (full coverage) Tier 5

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP offers a prominent patent litigation practice, which shows particular strength in the life sciences, representing both plaintiffs and defendants, and advising big names in the industry such as Johnson & Johnson, Boston Scientific, and 3M. In addition, the group also represents major technology and electronics companies, maintaining a steady activity in federal courts, the ITC and the PTAB. Philadelphia’s Steve Maslowski steers the practice, which also operates from its patent hubs in Washington DC with Cono Carrano and Brandon Rash; New York with Michael Kahn; and Irvine with Kevin McBride. This last office was reinforced in 2021 with the arrival of Paul Tripodi from Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati. Texas-based associate Andy Rosbrook is another name to note.

    Practice head(s):

    Key clients

    3M Company

    Amneal Pharmaceuticals

    AT&T

    Boston Scientific Corporation

    Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.

    Cytonome/ST, LLC

    Depuy Synthes

    DIRECTV

    Ethicon Endo-Surgery, Inc.

    Falcon Solutions

    George Strait Productions, Inc.

    Google

    Helen of Troy

    Inguran d/b/a STgenetics (formerly Sexing Technologies)

    Janssen Pharmaceuticals

    Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc.

    Kaz Inc.

    Kingston Technologies

    LG Electronics

    Merck & Co., Inc.

    Microsoft

    Minerva Surgical, Inc.

    Newfield Exploration Company

    Ono Pharmaceutical, Ltd.

    Oxo International

    Pfizer

    Pioneer Energy

    Pratt & Whitney

    Raytheon Technologies (formerly United Technologies Corporation)

    Sesen Bio

    Signify Holding B.V.

    Silver Ventures

    Sorenson Communications

    Synaptics Incorporated

    Unified Patents

    VIZIO, Inc.

    XY, LLC

    Work highlights

    • Representing Boston Scientific in a patent infringement and trade secret misappropriation case against Nevro Corp. in the District of Delaware.
    • Representing XY, LLC in a patent infringement suit against their competitor Trans Ova in the US District Court for District of Colorado arisen from alleged infringement of five patents relating to mammalian gender selection and flow cytometry.
    • Achieved a victory at the PTAB for Janssen Pharmaceutica NV (a unit of J&J), which denied institution of an inter partes review (IPR) petition brought by Mylan against Janssen.

    Real estate Tier 5

    Based in Texas, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP represents prominent investment funds REITs and private equity houses, in connection with development and leasing of data centers, hotels, office and industrial properties. Firmwide, it is also experienced in handling retail, education, senior living and multifamily properties. Fort Worth’s Marc Epstein  and Dallas’ John Bain are they key contacts.

    Practice head(s):

    John Bain; Marc Epstein

    Key clients

    CorePoint Lodging

    Entertainment Properties Group

    IPI Data Center Partners Management, LLC

    Iron Point Partners

    Work highlights

    • Representing CorePoint Lodging Inc. in the execution of a national disposition program which is focused on strengthening CorePoint’s hospitality portfolio.
    • Advised a private equity fund in (i) the acquisition and leasing of six for-profit schools located in California, Virginia, New Jersey and Pennsylvania for approximately $140m; (ii) the financing of the properties for around $71m; and (iii) the negotiation of multiple joint venture agreements relating to the transaction.
    • Advising a private equity fund on a $150m raw land acquisition in Loudoun County, Virginia on which the fund plans to construct, finance and lease out a minimum of 6 additional data center facilities.

    M&A/corporate and commercial > M&A: large deals ($1bn+) Tier 6

    The corporate team at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP supports clients on major M&A deals, buyouts, private debt investment, distressed transactions, SPAC deals and shareholder activist affairs. New York-based Zachary Wittenberg co-leads the practice alongside John Goodgame, a Houston lawyer who is especially well-accomplished within the energy sector; their team serves as general counsel to a number of companies, boards and executives and is also reputed for its investment fund representation.

    Practice head(s):

    John Goodgame; Zach Wittenberg

    Other key lawyers:

    Wesley Williams; Thomas Yang; Jessica Hammons; Jesse Betts

    Key clients

    Diamondback Energy, Inc.

    The conflicts committee of the board of directors of Golar LNG Partners LP

    Yorktown Partners LLC

    7-Eleven, Inc.

    PJSC LUKOIL

    Starboard Value Acquisition Corp.

    890 5th Avenue Partners, Inc.

    GTT Infrastructure

    U.S. Concrete

    Work highlights

    • Represented 7-Eleven in its $21bn acquisition of approximately 3,900 Speedway stores located in 35 states from US oil refiner Marathon Petroleum Corp.
    • Represented Starboard Value Acquisition in its $3.4bn merger with Cyxtera Technologies.
    • Represented PJSC LUKOIL, one of the largest publicly traded, vertically integrated oil and gas companies in the world, in its $2.25bn acquisition of a 15.5% interest in the Shah Deniz natural gas project in the Azerbaijan sector of the Caspian Sea from Malaysia’s PETRONAS.

    Tax > US taxes: non-contentious Tier 6

    Fielding teams across several major regional hubs, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP is widely praised by clients for its capabilities in big-ticket corporate deals and restructurings, working with a diverse array of entities from the worlds of asset management, energy, entertainment, and consumer goods. In New York, practice co-heads Stuart E Leblang  and Patrick B Fenn are recommended for their respective expertise in regulatory frameworks and acquisition structuring, while Olivier De Moor is noted for his investment fund capabilities.  In Texas, Houston-based Alison Chen  anchors the firm’s MLP tax offering, working with various energy sector players on transactions and restructurings. Shariff Barakat, a domestic infrastructure and renewable energy tax specialist, joined the Washington DC office from Nixon Peabody LLP in September 2021. Ron Nardini and Stuart Sinclaire have left the practice.

    Practice head(s):

    Patrick B. Fenn; Stuart E. Leblang

    Other key lawyers:

    Olivier De Moor; Shariff Bakarat; Alison Chen

    Testimonials

    ‘Dan Micciche is a great attorney, controlled skilled and thorough. He knows his stuff and holds the line.’

    ‘I am in the biosciences sector. I have been a leader in my career in complex tax transactions involving global cash flows. My ability to be a leader in complex global tax driven taxations is entirely based on Akin Gump. This goes far beyond knowledge of the multi-faceted legal issues. They are the most creative partner in thinking through different approaches I have ever worked with. I deal with tax departments of most of the major global firms, Akin Gump is the best from many different perspectives.’

    ‘Stuart Leblang is not only genius has the most amazing infectious energy that gets whole teams thinking differently. In other words, he encourages and manages multiple viewpoints which always results in better structures and team buy in. I find that these are incredibly valuable in complex transactions. In addition, complex transactions are generally multi-party which require multi-firm collaboration. Stuart has immense respect from senior partners at the major firms which is incredibly important in developing large multi-party complex international financial transactions. He is a global standout (and, important!).’

    ‘The tax team works cohesively with an amazing leader, Patrick Fenn. We bring up numerous complicated tax situations and they step up each and every time. Each team member seems to understand the magnitude, complexity as well as simplicity of how the layers of tax rules/regulations/laws work and we are confident with Akin Gump’s conclusions every time.’

    ‘Patrick Fenn is the brain behind Akin Gump’s tax team. He is able to artistically solve the complex topics so that it not only works today, but for multiple future scenarios. There is nothing more wonderful than having a lawyer who not only understands the law but knows how to apply it to a real world situation and make it all work.’

    Key clients

    Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Purdue Pharma, L.P.

    Blackstone Alternative Asset Management LP

    Blackstone Credit (f/k/a GSO Capital Partners)

    Ad Hoc Group of Secured Noteholders of Pacific Drilling S.A.

    Ad Hoc Group of First Lien Lenders of Frontera Holdings LLC

    Diamondback Energy, Inc.

    Laredo Petroleum, Inc.

    Conflicts Committee of the Board of Directors of Golar LNG Partners

    Genesis Energy, L.P.

    Schlumberger Limited

    7-Eleven, Inc.

    Ad Hoc Group of Holdco Facility Lenders of Salt Creek Midstream

    Centerpoint Energy, Inc.

    Conflicts Committee of the Board of Directors of Summit Midstream GP

    Cinemark Holdings, Inc.

    CEC Entertainment, LLC

    Mannatech, Incorporated

    ApiJect Systems, Corp.

    United Arab Emirates > Dispute resolution: compliance and investigations

    Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP has a broad internal investigations practice that covers securities fraud, accounting irregularities, price-fixing, sanctions and export controls violations. Managing partner Mac Fadlallah heads the practice and is praised by clients for being ‘extremely knowledgeable‘ and ‘technically strong‘. Natasha Kohne is the co-managing partner of the Abu Dhabi office and has an extensive international cybersecurity and data breach investigations practice. Counsel Johann Strauss is also noted.

    Practice head(s):

    Mac Fadlallah; Natasha Kohne

    Other key lawyers:

    Testimonials

    ‘Mac Fadlallah is extremely knowledgeable, approachable and most of all pragmatic. He is real pleasure to work with.’

    ‘The team are genuine experts and are viewed as the “go to” team in the region for export controls and international sanctions work.’

    ‘Both partners and associates have excellent reputations and are creating impressive track records in these increasingly key sectors.’

    ‘They are well supported by their international offices and, unlike some other firms in the region, are able to leverage a strong integrated international team.’

    ‘Mac Fadlallah is excellent. Not only technically strong, but also very commercial, he puts his clients’ needs at the forefront of everything he does and is never not available.’

    Key clients

    Careem

    Work highlights

    • Successfully represented a Fortune 500 company in a highly complex, multi-jurisdictional investigation spanning three continents.
    • Acting as primary export controls and sanctions counsel for a leading global freight forwarding and logistics company.
    • Advised Careem on developing and enhancing its internal compliance framework.

    Firm overview: Akin Gump is a global law firm with more than 900 lawyers and advisors who pride themselves on dedication to their clients and their communities. With 20 offices worldwide, we are renowned for numerous market-leading practices; our strengths in complex transactions and restructurings, high-stakes litigation, and public policy and regulatory matters; and our unyielding pro bono commitment. We partner with clients from both established industries and cutting-edge markets to deliver creative solutions to business-critical issues, helping them seize opportunities and anticipate challenges. Driven by our forward-thinking leadership, we have built a strong culture of innovation and collaboration as well as a talented and diverse workforce committed to the success of our clients and each other. We are intentional about fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace where all employees are supported and given the tools to succeed. We are focused on recruiting and nurturing the next generation of exceptional legal talent and are proud that our recruitment and professional development efforts are recognized as among the best in the industry.

    Main Areas of Practice:
    Corporate:
    Akin Gump advises investment funds, public and private companies and their boards, management and entrepreneurs on their transactional and ongoing business needs. It advises on mergers and acquisitions, capital markets and other finance transactions, and special situations and distressed transactions.

    Energy: Akin Gump is deeply rooted in all aspects of the energy industry in the United States and worldwide, including oil and gas, petrochemicals, liquefied natural gas, coal, utilities and renewables. The firm’s lawyers represent public and private companies, sponsors and portfolio companies, management teams and investors throughout the energy value chain in transactions, including M&A, securities, capital markets, finance, investments, restructuring, and project finance, development and operations.

    Financial Restructuring: The practice is widely recognized as one of the world’s leading restructuring groups with unparalleled bench depth and experience. With over 100 lawyers worldwide, our attorneys have a long track record of advising official and informal creditors’ committees, companies and institutional investors in formal and out-of-court restructurings, in financing and strategic transactions, and on distressed and special situations. It has played leading roles in some of the most complex and groundbreaking restructuring matters, including Chesapeake, Intelsat, Purdue Pharma, Sears, FirstEnergy Solutions, J.C. Penney, Mallinckrodt, Aeroméxico, Nordic Aviation, GTT Communications, Travelport, Frontier and PG&E.

    Intellectual Property: Akin Gump’s renowned IP trial team is sought out by Fortune 500 companies and multinational corporations for its achievements in litigating complex patent and trade secret disputes in federal courts around the country and before the International Trade Commission (ITC), the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) and United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. A majority of Akin Gump’s IP team holds technical degrees in various life sciences and engineering disciplines. They handle all aspects of IP litigation and counsel clients in transactional matters involving the licensing or transfer of IP rights, domestic or cross-border transactions which involve IP rights, and on the management of global IP portfolios.

    Investment Management: For over 40 years, the global investment management practice has been a recognized leader in the representation of large institutional and entrepreneurial fund sponsors and managers in the formation of private equity, hedge, credit and hybrid funds. The practice also serves as lead counsel to some of the world’s premier investors and has helped them access opportunities in markets around the world. The practice encompasses all aspects of fund formation and ongoing operations, from fund structuring, fund management, investor relations to portfolio company representation. Furthermore, our global private funds liquidity solutions team advises a range of premier secondaries funds, institutional investors and investment managers on their secondary market transactions around the world.

    Labor & Employment: The firm represents and advises employers regarding all aspects of employment law including handling complex wage-and-hour class actions and EEO litigation; high-stakes investigations and counseling matters; litigation related to contract disputes and restrictive covenants; and traditional labor matters such as collective bargaining, union corporate campaigns and grievance arbitrations. Lawyers advise on the labor aspects of major corporate reorganizations, acquisitions and bankruptcies and represent companies in OSHA matters.

    Litigation: With more than 200 lawyers, the litigation group includes attorneys who have clerked at every level of the federal and state court systems; veterans of the Solicitor General’s office and former Supreme Court clerks; former prosecutors; and former officials at the SEC, FTC, DOJ, PCAOB and many other federal agencies. Litigators are accustomed to handling matters of exceptional complexity, such as nationwide class actions, parallel civil and administrative proceedings, and nationwide and multi-district litigation.

    Public Law & Policy: Akin Gump has one of the world’s most sophisticated and diverse US and international government relations practices, representing corporations, individuals, nonprofits, foreign governments, coalitions and trade associations. The bipartisan practice comprises more than 70 lawyers and other professionals, including former members of Congress, high-ranking staffers and other former government officials who represent clients on legislative and policy matters.

    Regulatory: Akin Gump offers a suite of services to help clients address technical and often complex regulatory schemes across a broad span of compliance obligations based on industry, products and distribution, among others. Disciplines include antitrust/competition; communications and information technology; cybersecurity, privacy and data protection; energy; environment and natural resources; food and drug law; financial services; government contracts; health care and life sciences; international trade; and transportation. Work encompasses compliance counseling, investigations, enforcement, classification and licensing, transactional due diligence, and foreign investment, among other activities.

    Tax: The global tax practice offers multidisciplinary services, including guidance to US and international investors regarding the merit of tax issues facing entities doing business or making investments overseas; tax advantaged structuring during hedge and private equity fund formation; as well as counsel on M&A, international corporate restructuring, ERISA, bankruptcy reorganizations, capital markets, regulatory matters, project financings, tax controversies and private client services.

    DepartmentNameEmailTelephone
    Corporate Zach Wittenberg
    Corporate Dan Walsh
    Corporate Sebastian Rice
    Financial Restructuring Philip C Dublin
    Financial Restructuring Liz Osborne
    Intellectual Property Steven D Maslowski
    Investment Management Stephen M Vine
    Investment Management Prakash H Mehta
    Labor & Employment Robert G Lian Jr
    Litigation Steven M Baldini
    Public Law and Policy G Hunter Bates
    Public Law and Policy Brian Arthur Pomper
    Regulatory Hal S Shapiro
    Tax Patrick B Fenn
    Tax Stuart E Leblang
    PhotoNamePositionProfile
    Natasha Kohne photo Natasha KohneNatasha Kohne is a partner in Akin Gump’s San Francisco office and…
    Donna Mezias photo Donna MeziasDonna Mezias advises employers on a wide range of employment issues, including…
    Michael J. Stortz  photo Michael J. Stortz Partner; Litigation
    Number of lawyers : 900+

    At Akin Gump, we believe the various perspectives and experiences of our lawyers and staff help us achieve exceptional results for our clients and bring important insights into all aspects of the firm.

    Leadership Commitment

    To demonstrate the highest levels of leadership commitment, we restructured our long-standing firmwide DEI Council, which is now led by our firm Chair and Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer, and includes some of the most senior partners of the firm to drive leadership engagement and accountability.

    Firmwide Resource Groups

    We have eleven firmwide resource groups (FRGs) – for women, working parents and caregivers, people with disabilities, first generation lawyers, veterans and those who identify as Black, Latinx, Asian, MENA, Native American/American Indian and/or LGBTQ+. These FRGs complement the firm’s efforts related to recruiting, professional development, and fostering inclusive workplaces. They are voluntary and open to all lawyers and staff.

    Diversity Equity & Inclusion Councils

    Akin Gump has a firm-wide Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) Council to guide the execution of the firm’s DEI strategy. Our firmwide DEI Council includes some of the most senior partners of the firm, including members of the management committee, practice group leaders, office partners in charge, and leaders of our FRGs and local DEI councils to drive leadership engagement and accountability.

    We have local DEI councils in each U.S. office, London and our Asia offices. DEI councils offer lawyers and staff a chance to communicate ideas to firm management and to recommend additional initiatives to enhance diversity and inclusion at the firm.

    Recruiting and the Diversity Pipeline

    Akin Gump recruits exceptional and diverse talent at all levels. Our summer and year-round programs provide law students and aspiring lawyers immersive work experiences, mentorship and networking to build a foundation for the future. We are particularly proud of our Akin Gump/Robert S. Strauss Diversity & Inclusion Scholarship. Our signature two year program brings outstanding diverse law students to work at the firm and in-house with clients during their 1L and 2L summers, before they return to the firm as full-time associates. We also engage with law school student affinity groups, participate in diversity career fairs and collaborate with strategic external partners for lateral opportunities.

    Family Friendly Policies

    At Akin Gump, we support lawyers through policies and programmes that enable them to effectively manage and integrate work, family, and other responsibilities. The firm has a Reduced Work Schedule Policy, which allows lawyers to work reduced schedules and remain on partnership track. In particular, we have a significant track record of promotions of women who have availed themselves of the policy.

    We also have an Agile Work Programme that recognises that agile work arrangements play an important role in providing excellent client service at the highest levels while also providing flexibility for our lawyers. We know that many of our lawyers have caregiving responsibilities so the firm has also partnered with Bright Horizons to offer back up care to support our lawyers and staff who are parents and caregivers.

    Pro bono

    Our lawyers defend human rights by representing asylum seekers, victims of trafficking and the NGOs that assist them. Our pro bono matters include public interest litigation, legislative counselling, poverty law and transactions, in each of Akin Gump’s offices. The firm is also focused on leveraging our tremendous pro bono commitment to address injustice and pursue equality throughout our communities.