Weil Gotshal lawyer inks four mergers in a day amid deal wave

Credit: REUTERS/Kacper Pempel

By Greg Roumeliotis

July 15 (Reuters) - It was a record Merger Monday this week for Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP lawyer Michael Aiello.

Such days are milestones for deal negotiators who work over the weekend to unveil a merger at the start of the work week.

But Aiello outdid himself by advising on four deals announced on Monday, a personal record.

These included semiconductor maker Analog Devices Inc's ADI.O $21 billion acquisition of rival Maxim Integrated Products Inc MXIM.O, and healthcare services provider MultiPlan's $11 billion deal to go public by merging with blank-check company Churchill Capital Corp III CCXX.N.

Aiello also advised on buyout firm Madison Dearborn Partners LLC's $450 million deal to buy health insurance technology company Benefytt Technologies Inc BFYT.O, and Sirius XM Holdings Inc's SIRI.O purchase of E.W. Scripps Co's SSP.O podcast business Stitcher for up to $325 million.

Aiello, who chairs Weil's 600-lawyer corporate department, said he had to juggle board meetings and telephone calls while working on four deals over the weekend. Working from home during the coronavirus outbreak turned out to be easier in some respects and harder in others.

"It is easier to communicate with people, you can get together on Zoom with a few minutes notice and share documents," he said. "But, not having my colleagues around physically makes it more difficult, both personally and professionally."

Weil is up against Kirkland & Ellis for the No. 1 spot in U.S. mergers and acquisitions (M&A) legal advisory league tables, according to data provider Refinitiv.

Kirkland & Ellis has advised on $85.5 billion worth of U.S. deals year to date, while Weil has advised on $83 billion, according to Refinitiv. This time last year, Weil was No. 7 while Kirkland & Ellis was No. 2.

"In my world of M&A, a lot of advisers know each other, which makes it easier to work under more difficult circumstances," Aiello said.

(Reporting by Greg Roumeliotis in New York; Editing by Richard Chang)

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