JONATHAN K. LAYNE, 58
FIRM: Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP
LAW SCHOOL: Emory University School of Law
SELECTED CLIENTS: Aecom Technology Corp., Ameristar Casinos Inc., Centerview Partners LLC, Charter Communications Inc., CityCenter Holdings LLC, Dole Food Co. Inc., Goldman Sachs & Co., Herbalife Ltd., K-Swiss Inc., Lazard Freres & Co., Macquarie Securities (USA) Inc., Moelis & Co. Holdings LLC, Ryland Group Inc.
YEARS IN PRACTICE: 32
Biggest Case: Representation of Goldman Sachs & Co. as adviser to Yahoo in defense of a $44.6 billion hostile takeover attempt by Microsoft.
Most Difficult Deal: Counsel to a board committee of Hollywood Entertainment Corp., the second largest movie rental company, in connection with the company’s eventual sale. The transaction, which lasted more than 15 months and involved selling Hollywood Entertainment three times, included a number of complexities including multiple transaction renegotiations, hostile offers, class-action lawsuits and more. The deal ended with a terrific result for Hollywood Entertainment shareholders. It was great fun.
Highlight of Past Year: Completing a three-year, $2.2 billion transaction for Ameristar Casinos Inc. The transaction involved working closely with the company’s independent disinterested directors in structuring and executing the redemption of a large block of shares from the estate of the company’s founder and the refinancing of the company’s entire balance sheet.
The Secret to Closing a Deal: Constantly staying on top of transaction details on a real-time basis and remaining flexible where appropriate.