Shawn Atkinson, a partner in the London office, is a member of the Private Equity, Mergers & Acquisitions and Technology Companies Group, which advises leading private equity, venture capital and growth funds and high growth technology companies.

Among the leading investment funds he has represented are Acton Capital Partners, ABRY Partners, Accel Partners, Apax Partners, Bain Capital, Balderton Capital, Battery Ventures, Beringea, Bessemer Venture Partners, Columbia Capital, CommerzVentures, Evolvence, Global Finance, Golden Gate Capital, Greenspring Associates, Headway Capital Partners, Innova Capital, KPS Capital Partners, Mangrove Capital Partners, M/C Partners, Piton Capital, Rho Ventures, Russia Partners, Salesforce Ventures, Summit Partners, Vostok New Ventures and Vostok Emerging Finance.

A cross-border transactional lawyer by trade, his experience includes UK multi-jurisdictional and complex corporate transactions for both public and private companies, including countless acquisitions and disposals, cross-border mergers, bankruptcy infused asset sales, recapitalisations and reorganisations.

He has a particular depth of experience in technology and IP rich businesses and is a recognised leader in late stage venture transactions and in early stage private equity transactions in Europe and the emerging markets.

  • Shawn also advises technology companies, from incubation through M&A exits, initial public offerings and other growth opportunities. His participation in the private equity and venture capital sector spans his entire career—with time spent in private practice, in-house and advising investors as well as investor-backed businesses—and affords him a deep knowledge and understanding of the industry and client needs and expectations.

    Shawn started his career at Linklaters, and subsequently practiced at Kirkland & Ellis. He has worked extensively throughout North America, Eastern Europe and Asia. In addition to London, Shawn has practiced corporate law in New York, Toronto and across Eastern Europe. Before his law career, Shawn was a musician and record producer, which culminated in a No. 8 chart listing in the Canadian national chart in 1994.

  • Shawn's recent representations include the following.

    Private Equity and Growth Capital

    • Advised Harbourvest, Columbia Capital, Oak Investment Partners, Innova Capital in respect of the $900 million sale of GTS Central Europe to Deutsche Telekom.
    • Advised Bain Capital on its $3.5 billion take private of the South African retailer, Edgars Consolidated stores (the largest ever South African LBO).
    • Advised ABRY Partners in the acquisition of a controlling interest in UK based software business, Thomsons Online.
    • Advised Battery Ventures on the successful take private transaction of Jeeves Information Systems, a global software company headquartered in Sweden.
    • Advised Amwins Group Inc, which is a PE backed global insurance company, in the recommended takeover, by way of a scheme of arrangement, of THB PLC.
    • Advised MVC Capital in the leveraged acquisition of Gibdock Limited, the holding company for the former Royal Navy dockyards situated in Gibraltar at the entrance to the Mediterranean.
    • Advised M/C Partners in the sale of Attenda, a UK hosting services provider (a provider of applications management and cloud hosting services) to Darwin Private Equity.
    • Advised Oaktree and Irving Place Capital on the successful acquisition out of the bankruptcy of the Chesapeake packaging business.
    • Advised a Golden Gate Capital related business on the acquisition and subsequent restructuring of a pan European modelling agency.
    • Advised the Evolvence group on the development and subsequent listing on AIM of its first fund of funds.
    • Advised Headway Capital on several undisclosed fund related corporate transactions.
    • Advised a CQS Management Ltd on the successful launch and listing of its credit arbitrage fund in Ireland.
    • Advised CVC Capital on its acquisition of Zabka Polska.

    Venture Capital

    • Advised Bessemer Venture Partners (and certain other shareholders) on both the Series C and D investment rounds in French online business, Criteo SA.
    • Advised Accel Partners on its successful investment in Vinted.com.
    • Advised JD.com on its successful US$397 million Series G1 financing of online retailer Farfetch.
    • Advised Swoop.com, Inc, a Delaware incorporated online advertising business, in respect of their venture capital backed financing rounds.
    • Advised Rho Ventures in respect of an undisclosed European investment.
    • Advised Braemar Energy Ventures on the Series A financing of a UK based cleantech business with global reach.
    • Advised Battery Ventures on the Series A financing of a globally minded online football fan website with operations across Europe.
    • Advised Greenspring Associates in its investment as part of a $136m financing round alongside New Enterprise Associates and Insight Venture Partners in Cvent, Inc, one of the world’s largest online event registration and management, e-mail marketing, and Web survey businesses.
    • Advised Bessemer Venture Partners on its successful investment in Russian online retailer, KupiVIP, which was Russia's largest ever venture capital investment round.
    • Advised JD.com on its US$397 million investment in Farfetch.

    Corporate, Infrastructure and telecom transactions

    • Advised GFT Technologies AG in respect of their acquisition of the Rule Financial Group.
    • Advised a Nigerian oil and gas logistics corporate on their potential acquisition of a certain warehousing and logistical assets.
    • Advised Orascom Telecom on its successful $18 billion LBO of the Italian mobile operator, WIND telecom (at the time Europe's largest ever LBO).
    • Advised a major U.S. private equity house on their bid for the privatization of Slovenian Telecom.
    • Advised the Government of Montenegro on the part privatization of Montenegro Telecom.
    • Advised American Electric Power on the sale of: (i) Fiddlers Ferry and Ferrybridge coal fired power plants in the UK and (ii) European utility assets.
    • Advised several U.S.-listed energy companies on the disposal of certain UK and Central and Eastern European utility assets.
    • Advised a leading U.S.-based energy company on the asset sale of its UK energy and freight trading business and trading book.
    • Advised an Eastern European government on the successful introduction of its first PPP project.
    • Advised a Middle Eastern conglomerate on the structuring and implementation of the first PPP project in Pakistan.
    • Advised a U.S.-based PE related construction business on the structuring of certain infrastructure work (including work related to the economic cities initiative in Saudi Arabia) in the Middle East.

    Central and Eastern Europe / Emerging Markets

    • Advised a U.S. based media company on the sale and acquisition of various telecommunications assets in Eastern Europe, including the acquisition of TV Nova in the Czech Republic.
    • Advised a major Polish bank in respect of its outsourcing arrangements in relation to its structural software credit trading platform.
    • Advised a leading U.S. based telecommunications business on the acquisition of several Romanian television assets.
    • Advised a major Czech power company in relation to its bid for two U.S.-owned power plants in Poland.
    • Advised a U.S.-based investment fund in respect of their potential acquisition of a Romanian software developer.
    • Advised a Vienna based private equity fund in relation to the acquisition of numerous portfolio assets in Eastern Europe.
    • Advised a U.S.-based private equity fund on its investment in a manufacturing business in Vietnam.
    • Advised a U.S.-based investment fund on its investment in a Ukraine based cruise line.
    • Advised a Middle Eastern conglomerate in respect of its North African railway investments.
    • Advised a Nigerian privately held company on its global acquisition plans.

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