Bloomberg Law
Free Newsletter Sign Up
Bloomberg Law
Advanced Search Go
Free Newsletter Sign Up

$26 Billion LinkedIn Sale To Microsoft Handled By These Law Firms

June 13, 2016, 7:58 PM

Microsoft announced plans for a $26 billion purchase of social networking website LinkedIn on Monday, a big win for the two law firms involved in the purchase.

Microsoft is advised by a team from Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, led by Alan Klein, co-head of the firm’s M&A practice. LinkedIn is represented by lawyers from Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati.

Monday’s purchase, $196 per LinkedIn share, paid for by Microsoft in cash, will reportedly be the largest acquisition in the computing company’s history.

The deal is expected to close by the end of 2016, according to a statement from Simpson Thacher.

Simpson Thacher’s Klein has been a trusted adviser to Microsoft, having advised on its acquisitions of Nokia, Skype, and Barnes & Noble’s Nook business, according to his firm bio.

In 2016, he has also helped close ChemChina’s $43 billion acquisition of Syngenta, Tyco’s $20 billion merger with Johnson Controls, Inc., and Apollo Group Management’s $15 billion purchase of the ADT Corporation, according to the firm’s website.

The team from Simpson Thacher also included Anthony Vernace, William Allen, Grady Chang, Kathryn Crumbaugh, and William Brentani, and more than a dozen other attorneys.

LinkedIn was represented by a team from Wilson Sonsini, including Martin Korman, who heads the firm’s M&A practice, as well as Bradley Finkelstein and Douglas Schnell.

According to Wilson Sonsini’s website, in the last two years the firm has advised on over 285 M&A transactions valued at more than $68 billion, including Intel’s $16.7 billion acquisition of Altera, and SunEdison’s $2.2 billion purchase of Vivint Solar.

According to a statement from Microsoft, the deal is still subject to approval by LinkedIn’s shareholders and certain regulatory approvals.

Representatives for the two law firms were not immediately available for comment on Monday.

The Street also reported that Microsoft’s chief legal officer Brad Smith and deputy general counsel Keith Dolliver took the lead in-house managing the deal, while LinkedIn’s general counsel Michael Callahan and Laura Blum took the internal lead for the career networking site.