Kevin M. Schmidt is a corporate partner in the Mergers & Acquisitions Group and is Co-Head of the firm’s Private Equity Group. He has worked extensively on acquisitions, divestitures and joint ventures, including cross-border transactions for both private equity and corporate clients. Mr. Schmidt is recognized as a leading lawyer for mergers and acquisitions in the private equity sector by Chambers USA, where he has drawn praise for his “candid feedback and negotiating prowess” and as “a great negotiator” who is “pragmatic” and gets “right to the point.” Sources commend his “solid business understanding of commercial issues” and “great ability to fundamentally grasp the legal issues around a transaction.”
He is also recommended for private equity buyouts by Chambers Global, where clients have said he “thinks like a business person and manages risk with sound commercial judgment,” and is viewed as “an incredible negotiator who, more often than not, wins the argument.” Mr. Schmidt is also recommended by The Legal 500 US, which has noted that he “stands out in his peer group” for his “responsive, commercially minded approach” and as someone “clients look to for leadership.”
He is ranked as a leading M&A lawyer by IFLR1000 and was named “Dealmaker of the Week” by The AmLaw Daily (2015) for his leading role in advising Canada Pension Plan Investment Board in its $12 billion acquisition of GE Capital’s sponsor lending business, including Antares Capital, the leading lender to middle market private equity sponsors in the United States.
Mr. Schmidt has spoken at a variety of seminars regarding recurring M&A issues and is a regular speaker at the International Bar Association’s Annual M&A Conference in New York (2016-2017).
He is a contributing author of The Private Equity Primer: The Best of the Debevoise & Plimpton Private Equity Report and the Debevoise & Plimpton Private Equity Report. He is also the author of various articles on M&A issues in M&A Lawyer, The Deal and The Corporate Governance Advisor. Mr. Schmidt has also been a regular contributor to programs at the Practicing Law Institute.
Mr. Schmidt joined Debevoise in 1994 and became a partner in 2002. He received his J.D. with high honors from Rutgers School of Law in 1994, where he was Order of the Coif, and his B.A. summa cum laude from Jersey City State College in 1989.
- Elliott Management in a $450 million equity rights offering of Roadrunner Transportation Systems, resulting in Elliott acquiring 90% of Roadrunner.
- Sirius Computer Solutions, a leading IT solutions integrator, and its majority owner, Kelso & Company, in the sale of a majority equity interest in Sirius to Clayton, Dubilier & Rice.
- Blackstone’s Tactical Opportunities Group in its strategic minority investment in Annexus, a leading designer of annuities and insurance-based retirement products.
- 4Refuel and its equityholders, including Kelso & Company and Penske Truck Leasing, in the sale of 4Refuel, the leading mobile on-site refueling company in Canada, to Finning International.
- Kelso & Company in its sale of PowerTeam Services to Clayton, Dubilier & Rice.
- SunSource, a Clayton, Dubilier & Rice portfolio company, in its acquisition of United Distribution Group, one of the largest distributors of industrial components and assemblies in North America.
- HarbourVest Partners as lead investor in Lime Rock Partners IV AF, L.P., a $1.9 billion acquisition fund which acquired the remaining assets of Lime Rock Partners IV, L.P.
- Citizens Financial in its acquisition of Franklin American Mortgage.
- Ullico, a labor-owned insurance and investment company, in the $1.2 billion cross-border take private acquisition of Student Transportation.
- Nationstar Mortgage, a leading mortgage servicer and originator, in its $3.8 billion merger with WMIH.
- HarbourVest Partners in its role as a lead investor in the restructuring of Eos Capital Partners III and Eos Capital Partners IV.
- Kelso & Company in its equity investment in Zenith Energy U.S.
- Cornell Capital as a leading investor in the $2.05 billion acquisition of Talcott Resolution, The Hartford’s run-off life and annuity businesses.
- Elliott Management in its equity investment in Emergent Cold Storage, a global cold storage chain business.
- Temasek in its strategic investment in BluJay Solutions, a leading provider of supply chain software and services.
- Access Industries as a lead consortium investor in the $5.6 billion acquisition of Calpine.
- Kelso & Company in its investment in Oasis Outsourcing, the nation’s largest privately held professional employer organization.
- The CF Corporation and The Blackstone Group in the $1.835 billion acquisition of Fidelity & Guaranty Life.
- Elliott Management in its $540 million redeemable preferred stock investment in Roadrunner Transportation Systems, a leading asset-right transportation and asset-light logistics service provider.
- Kelso & Company in its investment in Premia Holdings, a newly-formed property and casualty insurance and reinsurance group focused on providing runoff solutions.
- Littlejohn & Co. in the sale of a minority interest in the firm’s management companies and general partners to Goldman Sachs Alternative Investments & Manager Selection (AIMS) Group.
- Canada Pension Plan Investment Board in its investment in convertible preferred equity securities of an affiliate of Advanced Disposal Services.
- Evercore in the transfer of control of its Mexican private equity business, Evercore Mexico Capital Partners, to Glisco Partners.
- Affiliates of Rank Group in the $230 million sale of Prestone Products to Centerbridge Partners.
- One Equity Partners in its concurrent acquisitions of two call center operators, TLK Group and The Results Companies.
- Kelso & Company in its acquisition of Sirius Computer Solutions, a leading national IT solutions integrator.
- Kelso & Company in its $376 million acquisition, with Ajax Resources, of W&T Offshore’s interest in the Yellow Rose field in the Permian Basin of West Texas.
- Canada Pension Plan Investment Board in its $12 billion acquisition of GE Capital’s sponsor lending business, including Antares Capital, the leading lender to middle market private equity sponsors in the U.S.
- UCI in the $257 million sale of its Wells vehicle electronics business to NGK Spark Plug Co.
- TPG Growth in its investment in Big River Steel.
- Syniverse, a Carlyle Group portfolio company, in its $290 million acquisition of Aicent.
- Traxys Group in its agreement to sell a majority interest to The Carlyle Group and Louis Bacon.
- Kelso & Company in its acquisition of Power Holdings, comprised of sister companies T&D Solutions and Associated Diversified Services, which offers a full range of outsourced maintenance and construction services to the electric utility industry, from Huntsman Gay.
- Oceana Therapeutics in its sale to Salix Pharmaceuticals.
- Reynolds Group in its $4.5 billion acquisition of Graham Packaging Company.
- HarbourVest Partners and Paul Capital Advisors, as part of a consortium providing equity financing for the formation of NewQuest Asia Fund and its acquisition of Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s non-real estate private equity portfolio in Asia.
- Reynolds Group in its acquisition of Dopaco, a food service packaging company.
- Rank Group in its $980 million acquisition of UCI International, a North American automotive products business.
- Reynolds Group in its $6 billion acquisition of Pactiv, a NYSE-listed global manufacturer and supplier of consumer food and beverage packaging and storage products.
- BWAY Holding Company in its $915 million sale to Madison Dearborn Partners.
- A consortium that includes CAI Capital Partners, Goldman Sachs Capital Partners, Kelso & Company and Vestar Capital Partners, in its $3.3 billion going private acquisition of CCS Income Trust, a Canadian company providing waste management services to the oil industry.
- Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, The Carlyle Group and Merrill Lynch Private Equity in the senior credit and high yield financings of the $15 billion acquisition of The Hertz Corporation.
- The sale and subsequent reacquisition of The Jim Henson Company and the subsequent sale of the Muppets characters to The Walt Disney Company.
- General Electric in the repurchase of Vivendi’s stock of NBC Universal for $5.8 billion along with advice to NBC Universal on certain corporate matters related to the formation of the NBC Universal – Comcast joint venture valued at $37.5 billion.
- HarbourVest Partners in its equity investment in Granite Growth, supporting Granite’s acquisition of a portfolio of four health service companies.
- Canada Pension Plan Investment Board in its acquisition of equity in Enstar Group Limited from First Reserve.
- Power Holdings in its acquisition of PowerTeam Services from CIVC Partners and in subsequent follow on acquisitions.
- Rutgers School of Law – Newark, 1994, J.D.
- Jersey City State College, 1989, B.A.
- New York
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