Expanding our M&A/Private Equity and Securities practice is among the top strategic priorities for Ballard Spahr, a national law firm with more than 500 attorneys representing leading clients across industries. The Denver Front Range is a significant part of that effort.

When Ballard Spahr opened our Denver office in 1981, we were one of the first national law firms to lay down roots in the city. It is now one of our most successful offices. The corporate landscape of the area dovetails almost perfectly with the skills and experience of our more than 70-lawyer team, making it a natural area for growth. Our clients span the life sciences, technology, health care, energy, and natural products industries and include venture capital and private equity investors in those areas. In many cases, those client relationships began when the companies were newly formed and continued as they evolved into market leaders.

The Denver-Boulder region is a hub for the industries we know best—and also for the emerging growth companies we have advised through every stage of development. For that reason, we’ve been actively recruiting skilled transactional lawyers who want the support structure of a large, national firm coupled with the agility and personalized client service approach that defines our Denver and Boulder offices.

In February, Ballard Spahr welcomed three noted M&A/Private Equity and Securities partners—Carin M. Cutler, Nathan E. Seiler, and Steven N. Dupont—and opened a new office in Boulder. The office is our 15th in North America and our seventh in the West. Last year, the firm expanded its roster of transactional lawyers with Stephen W. Donelson, Damon O. Barry, and Shawn L. McIntire, lawyers with deep roots in Denver and decades of experience in middle market M&A deals. They join a team that includes well-known attorneys Michele J. Rowland and John L. Ruppert.

Our M&A team is part of a well-diversified corporate department of nearly 200 attorneys. We focus primarily on the representation of strategic and financial buyers and sellers of middle market companies, locally and nationally. We are known for our creative, pragmatic approach to structuring and negotiating transactions, and our ability to customize strategies that address the specific needs of each client.

Our M&A lawyers provide in-depth deal coverage—from initial structuring through due diligence and documentation to closing and post-closing integration. That includes helping clients navigate rapidly evolving and increasingly complex regulatory regimes, structure enterprises, raise capital, negotiate transactions, maintain compliance in day-to-day operations, and formulate successful exit strategies.

The team provides comprehensive counsel on:

  • Corporate governance
  • Employee benefits and executive compensation
  • Entity formation, structuring, and strategic partnerships
  • Lending and borrowing capital
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Privacy, data security, and cybersecurity
  • Product design and commercialization
  • Project finance
  • Public and private offerings
  • Structured finance
  • Tax issues
  • Exit strategies

A recent study by Deloitte predicts that the pace of deal activity will remain brisk. Seventy-one percent of corporate respondents and 86 percent of private equity investors said they expect an increase in M&A transactions this year. Software and technology companies are particularly attractive to Colorado investors. The market is evolving by the minute and investments in this area have produced enviable returns. We also represent a range of clients in the food and beverage industry, another sector poised for growth as strategic investors seek to expand their product offerings.

In this changing environment, it’s not enough to be a great deal lawyer. Being a strategic partner to clients means taking the time to understand their business and the industry-specific challenges they face—and then applying that knowledge to help them manage risk, identify opportunity, and move ahead of the competition.

We adopted an industry-focused approach rooted in collaboration, supported by business intelligence, and designed to expand our industry and market knowledge across the firm. We formed internal teams to analyze various industry sectors so that we can understand and anticipate the business, competitive, and regulatory challenges faced by our clients and develop a holistic understanding of their needs.

These teams are made up of professionals across practice areas and offices, resulting in a multi-dimensional approach that enables us to leverage the considerable skill and experience of lawyers throughout the firm to deliver exceptional value. Transactional lawyers meet with litigators, who help them recognize patterns in our nation’s courts that might assist in litigation avoidance. They work with intellectual property attorneys to avoid due diligence pitfalls in the acquisition of life sciences or tech companies. The goal—always—is to understand what keeps our clients up at night and develop a library of knowledge that can help them arrive at their goals in the most efficient and effective way possible.