Allen & Overy and DLA among advisers on $47bn Qualcomm-NXP mega-deal


Allen & Overy (A&O), DLA Piper and Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison are among a raft of firms to have picked up roles on mobile phone chipmaker Qualcomm’s proposed $47bn (£38.6bn) acquisition of NXP Semiconductors.

The transaction, which has been described as the largest semiconductor deal in history, is the first major deal that M&A heavyweight Scott Barshay has advised on since leaving Cravath Swaine & Moore in April to join Paul Weiss. Barshay’s role on the deal represents the first time that Paul Weiss has advised Qualcomm, a San Diego-based producer of semiconductors and other equipment used in the telecoms sector.

Qualcomm has been a Cravath client for years. Before he left the firm, Barshay advised the company on its $3.1bn (£2.5bn) acquisition in 2011 of chipmaker Atheros Communications.

Cravath was not excluded from the NXP deal, with a firm taking a role for Qualcomm on financing and antitrust matters, with corporate head George Zobitz, finance partner Scott Bennett, litigation partner Yonatan Even and antitrust partner Christine Varney taking lead roles.

Besides Barshay, Paul Weiss’s deal team for Qualcomm includes corporate partner Steven Williams and tax co-chair Jeffrey Samuels.

DLA Piper’s US co-chair Cameron Rains is representing Qualcomm’s board of directors along with public company and corporate governance chair Douglas Rein and corporate and technology partner Jeff Baglio. Alex Rogers, a former partner at DLA Piper predecessor firm Gray Cary Ware & Friedenrich, was promoted earlier this month to serve as executive vice-president of technology and licensing at Qualcomm.

A&O is advising Qualcomm on Dutch legal matters with a team led by corporate partner Christiaan de Brauw and tax partner Godfried Kinnegim, while Shearman & Sterling handled European competition law aspects of the deal for Qualcomm with a team led by Brussels partners Miguel Rato and Stephen Mavroghenis.

Meanwhile, NXP is being advised by a team of lawyers from Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom, which includes M&A partners Allison Schneirov, Kenton King and Alexandra McCormack; antitrust partners Steven Sunshine, Ingrid Vandenborre and Maria Raptis; executive compensation partner Regina Olshan; tax partner Gavin White; and corporate finance partner Laura Belkhayat. Dutch firm De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek also has a role for NXP.

Jones Day is counseling Qatalyst Partners in its role as financial adviser to NXP, with a team including M&A partners Ferdinand Mason, James Dougherty and Daniel Mitz, and litigation partner Stephen Hibbard.

Despite losing Barshay earlier this year, Cravath has recently grabbed lead roles on several notable M&A deals, including counseling Time Warner on its proposed acquisition by AT&T and advising British American Tobacco on its $47bn (£38.6bn) cash-and-stock bid to buy the remaining 57.8% stake of Reynolds American that it does not already own.