Sidley has been selected as “Activist Defense Law Firm of the Year (Large Cap)” by The Deal for the firm’s work in 2020.
The Deal Awards Research team said of Sidley’s win:
“During the awards review period Sidley Austin was a leading adviser to companies involved in or preparing to face activist investors. The firm worked on some of the most impactful and hotly contested deals over the last year, and their teams impressed The Deal’s judging panel across a range of disciplines. In 2020, Sidley successfully advised telecom infrastructure company Crown Castle to fend off Elliott Management. This firm also advised neuroscience and oncology company Alkermes in a dual battle with Elliott and Sarissa Capital Management that eventually led to a settlement and also worked with Big Lots in a settlement with Ancora and others. The firm represented Cubic in its activist defense and contested M&A battle with Elliott as well as Delek in its defense from Carl Icahn-controlled competitor CVR Energy.”
This award follows the No. 1 rankings for Sidley in the shareholder activism defense league tables of Bloomberg, FactSet, Refinitiv (formerly Thomson Reuters), and Activist Insights for 2020 and the first half of 2021. Additionally in 2021, the co-chairs of Sidley’s Shareholder Activism practice, Kai Liekefett and Derek Zaba, were ranked by Chambers USA as among the top five lawyers for takeover defense. Over the past five years, Mr. Liekefett and Mr. Zaba have represented companies in more than 90 proxy contests, several hundred other activist campaigns, and dozens of settlements — more than any other activism defense law firm in the world. Among many other matters in 2021, Sidley recently represented Box Inc. in its successful proxy contest against activist hedge fund Starboard Value.