Kristin Davis advises clients on executive compensation and employee benefits issues in connection with complex corporate transactions, including mergers and acquisitions, sales, spin-offs, and other private and public business combinations.


Ms. Davis has extensive experience in the design, modification and negotiation of compensation arrangements, including employment agreements, and equity- and cash-based incentive plans and separation agreements.

Ms. Davis also advises clients on corporate governance matters and SEC guidelines governing executive compensation disclosure and reporting. She counsels on tax planning with respect to golden parachute excise tax issues, limitations on the deductibility of executive compensation, and the tax rules and consequences relating to nonqualified deferred compensation.

She has provided executive compensation advice in connection with the following transactions, among others:

  • Apex Technology Co., Ltd. (China) as a member of a buyer consortium in its pending $4 billion acquisition of Lexmark International Inc., one of the largest outbound acquisitions in the technology sector ever done by a Chinese investor;
  • Broadcom Corporation in numerous matters, including its $37 billion sale to Avago Technologies Limited (Ms. Davis was a member of the deal team recognized by the Daily Journal with a 2016 California Lawyer Attorneys of the Year Award for innovative work on this deal); its $3.7 billion acquisition of NetLogic Microsystems, Inc.; and its $164 million acquisition of LTE-related assets from affiliates of Renesas Electronics;
  • Cadence Design Systems Inc. in its $170 million acquisition of Jasper Design Automation, Inc.;
  • Cavium, Inc. in its $1.4 billion acquisition of QLogic Corp.;
  • Evercore Partners, Inc. as financial advisor to Brocade Communications Systems Inc. in its $1.2 billion acquisition of Ruckus Wireless, Inc.
  • Hillshire Brands Company (formerly Sara Lee Corporation) in its $8.6 billion unsolicited acquisition by Tyson Foods, Inc.;
  • Nokia Corporation in the $7.1 billion sale of its devices and services business to Microsoft Corporation;
  • Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. in its $886 million acquisition of Astex Pharmaceuticals, Inc.;
  • PMC-Sierra, Inc. in several matters, including its $2.5 billion acquisition by Microsemi Corporation and its $34 million acquisition of the channel storage business of Adaptec, Inc.;
  • RPX Corporation in its $232 million acquisition of Inventus Solutions, Inc. from investors led by Clearlake Capital Group, LP;
  • SanDisk Corporation in several transactions, including its $19 billion acquisition by Western Digital and its $1.1 billion acquisition of Fusion-io, Inc.;
  • Solo Cup Company in its $1 billion acquisition by Dart Container Corporation;
  • Stryker Corporation in its $1.7 billion acquisition of MAKO Surgical Corp.;
  • SurveyMonkey in its $800 million debt and equity recapitalization;
  • TiVo Inc. in its $1.1 billion acquisition by Rovi Corporation; and
  • Yahoo! Inc. in its pending $4.8 billion sale of its operating business to Verizon Communications Inc.



  • J.D., Santa Clara University School of Law, 2003 (magna cum laude; Order of the Coif; Articles Editor, Santa Clara Law Review)
  • B.S., California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, 2000


  • California

Kristin M. Davis

Counsel, Executive Compensation and Benefits