Site Sections to Include

Thomas A. Cole

Partner

THOMAS A. COLE is a partner in Sidley’s Chicago office. He became a partner of the firm in 1981, a member of the firm’s Executive Committee in 1987 and a member of its Management Committee in 1988. For 15 years ended in April 2013, he served as Chair of the firm’s Executive Committee, the committee that exercises general authority over the affairs of the firm.

Mr. Cole has maintained a substantial practice in public company mergers and acquisitions and corporate governance, along with his firm management responsibilities. Mr. Cole is consistently recognized by Chambers USA and Chambers Global, including in their most recent editions. In 2001, Mr. Cole was recognized by Chambers Global as one of the 26 U.S. lawyers included in its list of the “Global 100 Lawyers”—“lawyers who stand out from their colleagues and are recognized internationally.” He was designated an M&A “Dealmaker of the Year” for 2007 by The American Lawyer. He was selected to BTI Consulting’s “Client Service All-Star” team for 2008, 2011 and 2014. In 2010 and 2013, he was named to “The Directorship 100”, the NACD’s list of “the most influential people in the boardroom community.”

Corporate governance assignments have included advising public company boards, standing committees and special litigation, transactions, succession and investigative committees. For the five years ended 1998 and beginning again in 2013, he has taught the seminar on corporate governance at The University of Chicago Law School.

While a partner in the firm, Mr. Cole was also vice president-law of Northwest Industries, Inc. from 1982 through 1985.

He has been involved in dozens of public company mergers and spin-offs, including the following that were each valued at more than $1 billion:

  • Beam/Suntory (pending)
  • MidAmerican Energy/NVEnergy (pending)
  • Commercial Metals (successful defense against lcahn)
  • Fortune Brands spin-off of Home and Security Business
  • Alberto-Culver/Unilever
  • AGL/Nicor (represented independent directors)
  • Aon/Hewitt
  • EOP/Blackstone
  • Clear Channel/THLee and Bain (represented special committee)
  • Exelon/PSEG (terminated)
  • Exelon/NRG (terminated unsolicited merger proposal)
  • Pulte/Centex
  • Tribune/ESOP-Zell
  • Corn Products/Bunge (terminated)
  • Nationwide Financial/Nationwide Mutual (represented special committee) 
  • ServiceMaster/Clayton Dubilier
  • CDW/Madison Dearborn
  • CNL Hotels/Morgan Stanley
  • Ventana Medical/Roche (began as hostile defense)
  • Sally Beauty/Clayton Dubilier
  • Tellabs/AFC
  • Maverick Tube/Tenaris
  • IMC/Cargill
  • Williams/Barrett (including the successful defense against Shell)
  • Kimberly-Clark/Scott Paper
  • Monsanto/DeKalb Genetics
  • Jefferson Smurfit/Stone Container
  • Interpublic Group/True North
  • Wolters Kluwer/CCH
  • Fred Meyer/QFC
  • Aon/Alexander & Alexander
  • IMC Global/Vigoro
  • Tribune/Renaissance Communications
  • Northwest Industries/Farley
  • Ohio Mattress/Gibbons Green

His other significant public company merger transactions include:

  • Central Vermont Public Service/Gaz Met
  • Renaissance Learning/Permira (represented independent directors)
  • Midwest Air Group/TPG (including the successful defense against Air Tran)
  • Sun Capital/ShopKo Stores
  • Goldner Hawn/ShopKo Stores (topped by Sun Capital)
  • Lyphomed/Fujisawa
  • Unilever/Helene Curtis
  • Mercantile/Mark Twain
  • True North/Bozell (including the successful defense against Publicis)
  • Humana/Emphesys
  • GE Medical/Marquette
  • Stone Container/Southwest Forest
  • Barrett/Plains
  • SFN/Warburg Pincus (represented special committee)
  • Ideal Basic/Holderbank (represented special committee)
  • Aon/Frank B. Hall
  • BWAY/Kelso (represented special committee)
  • Berisford/Scotsman

2 5 2 5 2 5