KAREN A. DEWIS has over 30 years of experience representing corporate, sponsor and financial institution clients in mergers and acquisitions, strategic alliances, capital raising transactions, corporate governance, compliance and general corporate matters. She also advises on complex joint ventures, internal restructuring and separation/spinoff transactions. As a leader of Sidley's Washington, D.C. M&A and Private Equity group, her clients include Fortune 100 and 1000 companies, leading private equity, infrastructure and hedge funds and global financial institutions across a variety of industries, including financial services, energy, real estate and technology.
Through her early experience advising risk arbitrageurs on fiduciary duty and securities law aspects of publicly announced merger transactions, Karen learned to efficiently identify and apply relevant legal principles to different fact patterns in order to provide real time practical legal advice regarding transactional risks. These skills, combined with perspective gained from exposure to a wide variety of matters over the years, have allowed her to advise clients in successfully navigating a multitude of complex situations, often involving the potential for conflicting interests, including take private transactions, externally managed structures, large-scale spin off transactions, establishment of joint control entities, and other matters requiring nuanced, commercially-minded legal advice.
In the energy and commodities sector, Karen advises a wide variety of market participants on M&A and corporate governance related matters, including entities involved in upstream power generation (conventional and renewable), midstream natural gas transportation (natural gas pipelines, gas storage) and downstream power and natural gas marketing and distribution (energy and commodities trading and logistics, retail energy supply, natural gas distribution).
In the financial services sector, Karen’s transactional experience spans a variety of asset classes, having represented commercial banks, insurance companies and specialty finance companies in M&A and other commercial transactions involving commercial and residential mortgage origination and servicing, commercial loan origination and servicing, equipment leasing and consumer banking.
In the technology sector, Karen’s practice has focused on technology transfers in the context of merger and acquisition and spin off transactions, both in connection with enterprise sales of technology companies and in the context of licenses as part of asset sales or transition services arrangements.
Through this practice mix, Karen has gained a deep understanding of the value drivers underlying transactions across a broad cross-section of the economy, with particular emphasis on regulated industries, and in the full gamut of structures designed to transfer benefits and allocate risks among buyers, sellers, lenders, traders and other market participants. She also regularly serves as an external sounding board for clients on matters of corporate governance and securities regulation.
Karen has been recognized by numerous independent commentators as a leading corporate advisor, including being named by Chambers USA as a leader in the field of Corporate Mergers & Acquisitions and by SmartCEO Magazine as among the Legal Elite in the Washington, D.C. area.