Sidley’s top-ranked Shareholder Activism practice is led by Kai Haakon Liekefett and Derek Zaba, two of the very few lawyers in corporate America who devote 100 percent of their time to activism and proxy fights. Since 2016, our team members have led more than 50 proxy contest defenses and have negotiated more than 30 settlement agreements for issuers, more than any other law firm in the world. Sidley was ranked as #1 law firm by Bloomberg and FactSet SharkRepellent for company representations in activist campaigns in 2020. In 2019, Kai was named “Dealmaker of the Year” by The American Lawyer for the Wynn Resorts proxy contest and has been recognized for the past four years as one of only eight leading takeover defense attorneys by Chambers USA. Both Kai and Derek are sought after speakers for panels, are frequently quoted and frequently teach classes on the topic of shareholder activism, including at Harvard and Stanford.
Sidley’s Shareholder Activism practice integrates top corporate lawyers, litigators and former SEC staff attorneys, which leverages Sidley’s traditional strengths in adjacent areas such as corporate governance, employment, compensation, antitrust, other regulatory areas and D&O insurance. We understand that activism defense is a team sport. Our team works collaboratively with other leading activism professionals such as investment bankers, public relations firms, proxy solicitors and private investigators.