Wake Up Call: CVS Clinches Court Approval for $68 Billion Aetna Deal

Sept. 5, 2019, 11:53 AM
  • CVS Health Corp. won a skeptical federal judge’s approval for its $68 billion takeover of Aetna Inc., removing the last obstacle to a deal that adds a huge health-insurance business to its nationwide network of pharmacies and prescription-drug benefit programs. Judge Richard Leon, the same judge who cleared AT&T’s $85 billion merger with Time Warner in 2018, signed off on a settlement agreement reached last year with U.S. antitrust enforcers. Opponents of the merger argued the combination would harm competition. (BN via BLAW) The two companies were represented by attorneys from Williams & Connolly, Dechert, and Davis Polk & Wardwell, among other firms. (National Law Journal)

  • Former Skadden Arps partner Greg Craig was acquitted of charges that he misled federal officials about his work for a Russia-aligned regime of Ukraine’s government while at the firm. The ruling is a setback for the justice department’s crackdown on unreported foreign lobbying. (BLAW via BLB)

  • The U.S. government is asking a federal judge disqualify Sidley Austin partner James Cole from representing Chinese telecommunications company Huawei in a lawsuit, because, as a former federal prosecutor, he had access to classified information related to their case. (BN via BLAW)

  • Dechert hired former Chicago federal prosecutor Andrew Boutros as regional chair of its U.S. white-collar practice. He arrives from Seyfarth Shaw, where he was national co-chair of the white-collar, internal investigations and false claims team, based in Chicago and Washington. Boutros led prosecution of the “largest food fraud in history” and helped prosecute cases related to the “Silk Road,” a site known as the Amazon of the dark web. (Dechert) Boutros said he shares at least one large client with Dechert, but declined to name it. (American Lawyer)

  • Six more LeClairRyan attorneys found new homes after leaving their former firm, which filed for bankruptcy this week. Fox Rothschild said litigation partners Robert P. Fletcher and Brian W. Stolarz, litigation counsel Kristen W. Broz, and labor & employment associate Ashleigh R. Eames joined in Washington. Labor and Employment partner William E. Hammel joined in Dallas. Corporate partner Christopher L. Pizzo joined in Morristown, New Jersey. (FoxRothschild.com)

  • Dentons, already the world’s largest law firm by headcount, is adding two South American firms to its sprawling Swiss Verein-based network. (Law.com)

  • O’Melveny & Myers is representing Ariana Grande in the pop star’s California lawsuit accusing Forever 21 of misappropriating her likeness by using a look-alike model in its advertising. (BLAW)

Lawyers, Law Firms

  • “If you build it, they will come.” Above The Law inventoried the top construction law firms in the country. (Above The Law)

  • Baker McKenzie is getting back executive compensation lawyer Jennifer Kirk, who for the last eight years has been at Google parent company Alphabet Inc., where she was director of global equity management. Kirk, who was at Baker McKenzie from 2001 to 2011, returns to the firm as a partner. (The Recorder)

  • Morrison & Foerster and other attorneys representing Georgia voters and an election transparency organization battling state election officials for a return to paper ballots have asked a federal judge to award them an estimated $5.6 million in legal fees and expenses. (Daily Report)

  • Morgan, Lewis & Bockius added a three-partner financial team that works in New York and Hartford, Connecticut, getting corporate restructuring lawyers Kurt Mayr and Jennifer Feldsher from Bracewell, and transactional finance lawyer Kristen Campana from Proskauer Rose. All three used to practice together at Bracewell, from which several more team members are expected to follow. (BLAW via BLB)


  • Cooley advised The Carlyle Group on its agreement to invest in AI-powered hiring firm HireVue as its new majority investor. (BN)

  • Morrison & Foerster is advising cybersecurity company Palo Alto Networks, Inc. on its $75 million acquisition of Zingbox, an Internet of Things security platform. (MoFo.com) (ZDNet.com)

  • DLA Piper represented Spur Energy Partners LLC, a Houston-based oil and gas exploration firm, in its $925 million acquisition of oil and gas properties in New Mexico from Concho Resources. (DLAPiper.com) (HoustonChronicle.com)

Laterals, Moves, Promotions

  • Former Treasury official Brian Jenn joined McDermott Will & Emery’s tax practice as a partner in Chicago. Meanwhile, Shearman & Sterling hired away McDermott tax lawyer Jay Singer as a partner in Washington. (BLAW via BLB)

  • New York-based Moses & Singer hired former Jenner & Block NYC bankruptcy and restructuring practice chair, Patrick Trostle, as a partner and chair of the firm’s new high yield & distressed debt group. Trostle arrives most recently from Thompson & Knight. (MosesSinger.com)

  • Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies added three Illinois government relations pros from McGuireWoods, including former AT&T senior attorney John F. Dunn. As a partner at McGuireWoods Dunn led that firm’s Illinois government relations group. He joins Cozen O’Connor as a member and managing director of its government relations unit. Darren Collier, a former deputy general counsel at the Illinois Housing Development Authority, arrives from the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, joining Cozen O’Connor as a member and the government relations unit as a principal. Patrick L. Carey joins as a principal. (Cozen.com)

  • Cooley added Goodwin Procter compensation and benefits partner Alessandra Murata as a partner in its Palo Alto office. (Cooley.com)

  • Katten Muchin Rosenman tax and real estate finance special counsel Cynthia Langelier Paine jumped to Blank Rome as a partner in its tax, benefits, and private client group in Washington. (BlankRome.com)

  • Sullivan & Worcester added its 10th lateral partner this year, getting Skadden corporate lawyer Angela Gomes in Boston. (SullivanLaw.com)

  • Fenwick & West added intellectual property and technology transactions lawyer Andrew Klungness as the first partner in its new Santa Monica office. He arrives from Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner. (Fenwick.com)

  • Seyfarth Shaw added real estate litigator Ingrid C. Manevitz as a partner in New York. She joins from Schwartz Sladkus Reich Greenberg Atlas. (Seyfarth.com)

  • North Carolina Central University counsel Benita Jones joined Womble Bond Dickinson as a member of the firm’s education and school law team. (WombleBondDickinson.com)

Legal Actions

  • A San Francisco-based firm has filed 13 sexual harassment suits against Lyft and plans to file more against the ride-hailing company. (The Recorder)

To contact the correspondent on this story: Rick Mitchell in Paris at rMitchell@correspondent.bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Rebekah Mintzer at rmintzer@bloomberglaw.com; Molly Ward at mward@bloomberglaw.com

To read more articles log in.

Learn more about a Bloomberg Law subscription.