Melissa Sawyer: Lawyer with Sullivan & Cromwell LLP

Melissa Sawyer

Melissa Sawyer
New York,  NY  U.S.A.

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Experience & Credentials

Practice Areas

  • Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Private Equity
  • Consumer & Retail
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • Corporate Governance
Contact InfoTelephone: 212-558-4243
Fax: 212-558-3588
University Washington and Lee University, B.A., 1997
Law SchoolUniversity of Virginia School of Law, J.D., 2000
Admitted2001, New York

Recognized byChambers USA2014 as a Corporate M&A Up and Coming lawyer, Melissa Sawyer is a partner in the Firm's Mergers & Acquisitions Group, focusing her practice on a variety of corporate governance, M&A and private equity matters in the United States and abroad. Among other things, she is experienced in dealing with activist shareholders, takeover offense and defense, poison pills, carve-out transactions and joint ventures. Her experience spans multiple industries, including consumer and retail, healthcare and life sciences, insurance and industrials. Melissa is currently a Lecturer in Law at Columbia Law School and a fellow of the American Bar Foundation and often speaks on corporate governance and M&A matters.

Recent Publications

•Are consumer and retail companies more vulnerable to activism?The Deal Pipeline(July 2014)

•The Way Way Back: 2013 In Review and What To Expect in 2014,The M&A Lawyer(November/December 2013)

•Lexis Practice Advisor series,LexisNexis(contributing author) (published quarterly)

•Deal Protections in Tender Offers,The Review of Securities & Commodities Regulation(co-author) (October 2013)

•Corporate Governance Feature: 10b5-1 Plans and M&A Transactions,The M&A Lawyer(July/August 2013)

•Speed Reading: Checklist For New Directors,LexisNexis Emerging Issues Analysis(co-author) (July 2013)

•ISS's Declining Influence in Shareholder Votes, (June 2013)

•Speed Reading: Top 10 Issues with Consortium Bids,Lexis-Nexis Emerging Issues Analysis(co-author) (January 2013)

•Chronicle: 2012 in Review and What to Expect in 2013,The M&A Lawyer(co-author) (November/December 2012)

•Speed Reading: Top 10 Ways to Address Antitrust Risk in M&A Transactions,Lexis-Nexis Emerging Issues Analysis(co-author) (September 2012)

•Advising Buyers in Controlling Stockholder Transactions,The Review of Securities & Commodities Regulation(May 2012)

•Speed Reading: Top 10 Issues to Consider When Advising a Special Committee in a Going Private Transaction,Lexis-Nexis Emerging Issues Analysis(co-author) (February 2012)


•Empire State Counsel Honoree (New York State Bar Association, 2013)

•Recognized as a Rising Star byIFLR1000. (IFLR1000, 2014)

•Recognized in 40 Under 40 ranking of top professionals under the age of 40 who have reached a significant level of success in their careers. (M&A Advisor, March 2012)

•Recognized as a Rising Star for Mergers & Acquisitions, Corporate Governance and Compliance, and Business/Corporate. (New York Super Lawyers2011, 2012 and 2013)

Reported CasesSELECTED REPRESENTATIONS; Alcon's independent directors committee in Novartis's $12.9 billion acquisition of the remaining publicly-held minority interest in Alcon; CONMED in its announced settlement agreement with shareholder Coppersmith Capital Management and its $22.5 million acquisition of Viking Systems; Cytec Industries in the $1.15 billion divestment of its Coating Resins business to Advent International and its $1.797 billion acquisition of UCB's Surface Specialties business; Diageo in numerous transactions, including its acquisition of a 50% stake in the Zacapa rum business of Industrias Licoreras de Guatemala, its sale of Barton & Guestier to Castel Freres, its $224 million acquisition of The Chalone Wine Group and its $8.2 billion acquisition of the Seagram spirits and wines business with Pernod Ricard; Dr. Thomas Frist in connection with the $33 billion leveraged buy-out of HCA by a consortium of private equity investors; Express and the Special Committee of its board in connection with Sycamore Partners' interest in acquiring Express; IntercontinentalExchange in its $10 billion offer to acquire the Chicago Board of Trade and its $1.79 billion acquisition of the New York Board of Trade; IPC Holdings in its announced $3 billion business combination with Max Capital Group, which was terminated, and IPC's subsequent acquisition by Validus Holdings; Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group in its $3.5 billion going private acquisition of UnionBanCal Corporation; NewPage Corporation in its pending $1.4 billion agreement to be acquired by Verso Paper Corp. Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan Board in its $2.4 billion acquisition of four North American container terminals of Orient Overseas (International) Limited; Popular in its pending definitive agreements to sell its regional operations, including 41 branches, approximately $1.8 billion in related loan portfolios, and approximately $2.1 billion in deposits, to three different buyers; The St. Joe Company in its definitive agreement to sell approximately 382,834 acres of non-strategic rural timberland in the Florida panhandle, along with related assets, to AgReserves, Inc. for $565 million; SunTx Capital Partners in its acquisition of a majority stake in Carolina Beer & Beverage; Tokio Marine Holdings in its $2.7 billion acquisition of Delphi Financial Group and $4.7 billion acquisition of Philadelphia Consolidated Holding Corp. UnitedHealth Group in its acquisition of XLHealth Corp., its $2.7 billion acquisition of Sierra Health Services and its $500 million acquisition of the insurance subsidiaries of John Deere; World Color Press in its $1.4 billion acquisition by Quad/Graphics
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Office Information

Melissa Sawyer

125 Broad Street
New YorkNY 10004-2498


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