Corporate Finance/M&A, Ropes & Gray LLP updates

USA

Contributed by Ropes & Gray LLP
In Delaware, notices and deadlines matter
  • USA
  • 03 July 2019

A recent Delaware Court of Chancery decision is illustrative of the principle that merger partners should not assume that anything less than strict compliance with notice requirements (particularly when they relate to termination rights) and deadlines in a merger agreement will be enforced. The case is also a cautionary tale of why one merger partner should never assume that the other merger partner still wants to do the deal as much as it does.

DOJ commentary underscores importance of pre-acquisition diligence
  • USA
  • 15 May 2019

In a July 2018 conference speech the Department of Justice (DOJ) deputy assistant attorney general (DAAG) for the Criminal Division underscored the importance of pre-acquisition Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) diligence. The DAAG's remarks reinforced FCPA enforcement as a DOJ priority and provided a disclosure roadmap for buyers that uncover FCPA-related misconduct both pre and post-acquisition.

Chancery Court revisits fair value analysis in AOL appraisal action
  • USA
  • 10 April 2019

The Delaware Court of Chancery has issued its original opinion in a consolidated appraisal action arising out of Verizon Communications Inc's 2015 acquisition of AOL Inc. In contrast to a recent string of Delaware appraisal decisions, the court determined that reliance on the $50 per share merger price for determining AOL's statutory fair value was not warranted.

Delaware's amendments apply market-out exception to appraisal rights for Section 251(h) mergers
  • USA
  • 03 April 2019

Delaware Governor John Carney recently signed into law amendments to the Delaware Limited Liability Company Act and the Delaware General Corporation Law. Notably, the amendments expand the application of the market-out exception to appraisal rights, which has long been applicable to 'long-form mergers', to also include 'medium-form mergers'.

Court provides guidance on applicability of transaction price as measure of fair value
  • USA
  • 27 March 2019

Two Delaware appraisal decisions issued in 2018 illustrate that, following the Delaware Supreme Court's decisions in Dell and DFC, the Delaware courts remain willing to give substantial evidentiary weight to a deal price as an indicator of fair value where the underlying transaction is the product of an open process characterised by the objective indicia of reliability.


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