Stephen F. Arcano serves as a global head of the firm's transactions practices, advising companies, boards of directors and financial institutions on a wide range of corporate matters, including mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance, and other corporate and securities laws matters.


Mr. Arcano has worked on a variety of high-profile mergers and acquisitions representing acquirers, sellers and targets, with notable examples including Mobil Corporation in its merger with Exxon Corporation; the independent directors of Time Warner Cable in its acquisition by Charter Communications and in TWC’s terminated transaction with Comcast, as well as in connection with TWC’s separation from Time Warner; XTO Energy in its acquisition by Exxon Mobil Corporation; Gilead Sciences, Inc. in various transactions, including its acquisition of Kite Pharma, Inc. and its acquisition of Pharmasset, Inc., a transaction that was recognized in the 2012 Financial Times “US Innovative Lawyers” report; and Immunex Corporation in its acquisition by Amgen, Inc.

Mr. Arcano has represented a variety of clients in cross-border transactions, including Alcatel in its merger with Lucent Technologies Inc. and in its acquisition of DSC Communications Corporation; the Bertarelli family and Serono S.A. in connection with the acquisition of Serono by Merck KGaA; The WhiteWave Foods Company in its acquisition by Danone SA; Chattem Inc. in its sale to Sanofi-Aventis; Dean Foods in its acquisition of Alpro N.V.; MacMillan Bloedel Limited in its acquisition by Weyerhaeuser Company; BTR plc in the sale of its global packaging business to Owens-Illinois, Inc.; and VNU N.V. in its acquisition of Nielsen Media Research Inc.

Mr. Arcano’s experience in contested situations includes representation of Norfolk Southern Corporation in connection with an unsolicited offer and threatened proxy contest by Canadian Pacific Railway; The Washington Companies in its acquisition of Dominion Diamond Corporation; Pinnacle Entertainment in connection with the unsolicited offer by Gaming & Leisure Properties Inc. and subsequent agreement to merge with GLPI following a spin-off by Pinnacle’s operating business; Valeant Pharmaceuticals in its unsolicited offer for Allergan Inc.; ICN Pharmaceuticals, Inc. in its replacement of the board of, and subsequent acquisition of the publicly held shares of, Ribapharm Inc.; Validus Holdings, Limited in its unsolicited acquisition of IPC Holdings, Limited; and Transocean Limited in its proxy contest with Carl Icahn. Mr. Arcano also has counseled a number of client companies in connection with activist campaigns.

In leveraged buyout transactions, Mr. Arcano has represented sellers, buyout groups and management. Examples include representing Gardner Denver, Inc. in its acquisition by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.; Digital River in its sale to affiliates of Siris Capital; Compuware in its sale to affiliates of Thoma Bravo; the independent directors of Jones Group in Jones’ sale to affiliates of Sycamore Partners; Greenfield Partners in its acquisition of Clayton Holdings, Inc.; Jerry Moyes in his leveraged acquisition of Swift Transportation Co., Inc.; the special committee of Insight Communications Company, Inc. in Insight’s acquisition by affiliates of the Carlyle Group and founders Sidney Knafel and Michael Wilner; the management board of Celanese AG in the acquisition of Celanese by affiliates of the Blackstone Group; Vulcan Capital in its acquisition of Plains Resources Inc.; Dan Wassong in the acquisition of Del Laboratories by affiliates of Kelso & Co.; IMC Global, Inc. in the sale of its salt and related businesses to affiliates of Apollo Management; and Johns Manville Corporation in the sale of Riverwood International Corporation to affiliates of Clayton, Dubilier & Rice.

In addition, Mr. Arcano has represented major investment banking firms as financial advisors in a variety of significant transactions, including representation of Centerview Partners; Goldman, Sachs & Co.; Deutsche Bank Securities; Evercore; Greenhill & Co.; Morgan Stanley & Co.; and Moelis & Company.

Mr. Arcano is an adjunct professor of law at Georgetown University Law Center and has lectured at various other law schools and seminars.

He was named as one of The American Lawyer’s Dealmakers of the Year in 2017 and repeatedly has been selected for inclusion in Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business and Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business. Mr. Arcano also has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America, Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America and IFLR1000.



  • J.D., Georgetown University Law Center, 1988 (magna cum laude; Order of the Coif; The Tax Lawyer)
  • B.S.F.S., Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, 1984


  • New York


  • Georgetown University Law Center Board of Visitors
  • Georgetown University Alumni Association Board of Governors

Stephen F. Arcano

Partner, Mergers and Acquisitions