The leader of the Corporate Group in Skadden’s Los Angeles office, Jeffrey H. Cohen is recognized consistently as one of the leading private equity and M&A lawyers in Southern California. His broad transactional practice focuses on private equity and strategic mergers and acquisitions around the world.
Mr. Cohen has represented both buyers and sellers in numerous large and middle-market mergers and acquisitions. He often represents private equity funds and their portfolio companies in a full investment cycle, including acquisitions, financings and dispositions, as well as entrepreneurs and family businesses. In addition, he has counseled clients on numerous investments in distressed debt and acquisitions of distressed businesses.
Mr. Cohen’s representations have included clients in an array of industries, such as apparel, energy, food, consumer products, retail, gaming, banking, sports and media, among others. In addition, he routinely counsels corporations and their officers and directors on securities and corporate governance matters.
Mr. Cohen’s extensive experience, creativity and background in finance enable him to effectively address clients’ business needs. For example, Mr. Cohen’s work advising an investor group in SKBHC’s acquisition and recapitalization of AmericanWest Bank received the Financial Times’ highest ranking in its 2011 “U.S. Innovative Lawyers” report.
Mr. Cohen has been recognized repeatedly for his work, most notably by Chambers USA, in which sources note that he “is admired for his ‘thoughtful, experienced approach.’” His achievements also have been noted by The Best Lawyers in America, The Legal 500 U.S., IFLR1000 and the Los Angeles Business Journal, which included him among the “Who’s Who in L.A. Law” and the top 40 “Most Influential M&A Advisors” in Los Angeles. The Daily Journal profiled Mr. Cohen in a cover story documenting Skadden’s success in building a substantial corporate practice in Los Angeles and, in 2013, recognized him as one of the top 10 private equity lawyers in California.
Mr. Cohen is a frequent speaker, including at the Los Angeles County Bar Association’s 43rd Annual Securities Regulation Seminar, where he provided insight into current developments in private equity transactions and deal protection provisions.
Tengram Capital and its portfolio company, Robert Graham, in connection with the proposed combination of Robert Graham with Joe’s Jeans;
- Oaktree Capital Management and its co-investors in connection with the proposed sale of a majority of the stock of Alliance Healthcare Services, a publicly listed company, to Fujian Thai Hot Investment Company;
- Infrastructure Investing Group of Oaktree Capital Management (formerly Highstar Capital) in connection with an investment in an energy transmission project;
Z Gallerie in its strategic partnership with Brentwood Associates, Inc.;
Serge Azria and Dutch, LLC in a majority investment by TA Associates in Dutch, the global fashion company behind the JOIE, Equipment and Current/Elliott brands;
New Cotai Holdings, an entity owned by funds managed by Silver Point Capital, L.P. and Oaktree Capital Management, L.P., in the negotiation of a joint venture with Melco Crown Entertainment Limited for the development and construction of an integrated casino resort in Macau;
an investor group led by Goldman Sachs Capital Partners and Oaktree Capital Management, L.P. in the formation and structuring of SKBHC Holdings, LLC, a new bank holding company, and in SKBHC Holdings’ acquisition and recapitalization of AmericanWest Bank. The transaction was the first of its kind, involving the bankruptcy of a bank holding company and the sale of its subsidiary bank in a court-supervised Section 363 sale. The transaction also received the highest ranking in the Financial Times’ 2011 “U.S. Innovative Lawyers” report, and won the “Chapter 11 Reorganization of the Year (Upper Middle Market)” at M&A Advisor’s 6th Annual Turnaround Awards;
Oaktree Capital Management, L.P. in an investment in First BanCorp, the NYSE-publicly traded bank holding company for FirstBank Puerto Rico; in the acquisition of Pierre Foods, Inc. and certain of its affiliates as part of their Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases; and, with MTS Health Investors, the acquisition of a controlling interest in Alliance Imaging, Inc.;
a consortium of private equity investors in the organization of AloStar Bank of Commerce and its simultaneous acquisition of the operations of Nexity Bank from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation;
Crimson SV, LLC in the acquisition of Tyden Group, Inc. and Tyden Group in the acquisitions of E.J. Brooks Co., Inc. and Stoffel Holding Company;
the GFI Energy Group of Oaktree Capital Management, L.P. in the acquisitions of Recon Services, Energy Solutions Holdings, L.P. and InfraSource Incorporated, and in the acquisition and subsequent sale of Sheehan Pipeline Construction Company; Snelson Companies, Inc.; Elgar Electronics Corporation; and UtiliQuest Holdings Corp.; and
Apollo Management, L.P. in the acquisitions of General Nutrition Centers, Inc. and the K-12 education business of Sylvan Learning Systems, Inc.
Strategic Mergers and Acquisitions
AdvancePierre Foods in connection with the acquisition of substantially all of the assets of the Landshire Inc. sandwich business and of Better Bakery, LLC;
GLAMGLOW and its owners in the sale of substantially all of its assets to The Estée Lauder Companies Inc.;
OPI Products, Inc. and its owners in connection with the sale of the company to Coty Inc.;
Oakley, Inc. in the sale of the company to Luxottica Group S.p.A (Italy);
Pierre Foods, Inc. in the acquisition of Advance Foods Company and Advance Brands;
American Apparel Inc. in the sale of the company to a special purpose acquisition company and in various other matters;
the negotiation committee of the board of directors of Educate, Inc. in a going-private transaction;
The News Corporation Limited and Fox Entertainment Group, Inc. in the purchase and subsequent sale of the Los Angeles Dodgers and investments in other sports assets, including the Staples Center; and
Los Angeles County Museum of Art in connection with an acquisition.
J.D., University of California at Los Angeles School of Law, 1988
B.S., Economics, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, 1985
Member, Board of Directors, Mattel Children’s Hospital UCLA
Member, Board of Directors, UCLA Law Alumni Association
Chairman, Penn Fund Executive Board, and Member, Penn Parents’ Council, University of Pennsylvania
Southern California Regional Advisory Board of the University of Pennsylvania
Vice Chair of Annual Giving, Harvard-Westlake School