Michael V. Gisser
Mergers and Acquisitions, Technology and International
Michael Gisser leads the firm’s Asia Pacific practice and is the firm’s senior M&A partner in Greater China. He has been continuously active in cross-border control transactions for more than 20 years. Mr. Gisser advises clients throughout the world in a range of industries with respect to corporate and international transactions, representing major firm clients in the real estate, technology and entertainment industries, among others.
As a result of his extensive cross-border experience, Chambers Global 2013 and 2014 profiled Mr. Gisser as a "leading lawyer" in both China and the United States. In addition, he has been recognized in Corporate/M&A by Chambers USA and Chambers Asia-Pacific. The Los Angeles Daily Journal consistently has listed Mr. Gisser as one of California’s top "Rainmakers." He teaches at the Stanford Directors’ College in China.
Selected representations include:
- Youku Inc. in its US$1.1 billion merger, via a stock swap, with Tudou Holdings Limited. Both parties are PRC online video websites;
- a number of going-private transactions involving U.S.-listed PRC businesses, including representing: the management of Harbin Electric (named a “Deal of the Year” by China Business Law Journal and Asia- MENA Counsel Magazine); the chairman of Focus Media Holding Limited (the largest-ever delisting of a New York-listed PRC company and “Take Private Deal of the Year,” China Business Law Journal); China Security & Surveillance Technology (“Deal of the Year,” China Business Law Journal); Chemspec International (“Deal of the Year,” China Business Law Journal); Fushi Copperweld; the independent committee of FunTalk China (“Deal of the Year,” China Business Law Journal); and the founding shareholder of AsiaInfo-Linkage;
a series of change-of-control transactions involving Skype, the global Internet communications company, including representing:
- an investor in Skype in connection with Microsoft’s purchase of Skype from current investors for US$8.5 billion in cash;
- Niklas Zennström and Janus Friis, founders of Skype, along with a consortium of private equity and venture capital firms led by Silver Lake Partners, in their US$2.8 billion acquisition of Skype from eBay Inc. in 2009; and
- Skype in its acquisition by eBay for US$3.6 billion (“2005 Breakthrough Telecom/Technology Deal”, according to Investment Dealers’ Digest), including the largest earnout payment ever made;
- Centro Properties Group (Australia), a real estate investment trust and a developer and manager of shopping malls, in its US$9.5 billion sale via an auction of its U.S. shopping centers to Blackstone Group;
- The Walt Disney Company in its acquisition of the Club Penguin children’s website for up to US$700 million (including an earnout);
- Pulmuone Holdings (South Korea) in its acquisition by a tender offer of Monterey Gourmet Foods. Both companies are food producers. This deal marked only the second successful acquisition of a U.S. public company by a Korean company by means of a tender offer;
- Pacific Century CyberWorks Japan, a developer of online games and entertainment, in its acquisition of the entertainment businesses of Circadence Corporation, a provider of solutions and services that enhance website performance;
- Goldman, Sachs & Co. as sole underwriter in a US$251 million offering of common stock by Activision, Inc., a publisher of entertainment software products;
- Plethico Pharmaceuticals, an Indian manufacturer of nutraceuticals, in its acquisition of Natrol, a U.S. public manufacturer of nutritional supplements, via a tender offer and merger;
- Juicy Couture, a designer and seller of women’s wear, in its sale to Liz Claiborne; and
- NatSteel Electronics Corporation of Singapore in its US$1.4 billion acquisition by Solectron, Inc.
J.D., Stanford Law School, 1982 (Order of the Coif; senior articles editor, Stanford Law Review)
A.B., Harvard College, 1978 (cum laude)
Executive Committee Member, Asia Society Southern California
Board of Visitors Member, Stanford Law School