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Michael Kaplan


Davis Polk Management Committee member and Corporate Department head. Named a Law360 “Capital Markets MVP of the Year” and an American Lawyer “Dealmaker of the Year.”

Michael is a member of Davis Polk’s three-person Management Committee and head of the firm’s Corporate Department. He is ranked as one of only two “Star Individuals” in capital markets by Chambers USA, where clients describe him as “superb,” a “brilliant lawyer who is very responsive and understands business issues very well,” and “very practical when it comes to finding solutions.” He has been named a Law360 “Capital Markets MVP of the Year” and an American Lawyer “Dealmaker of the Year.”

Michael advises issuers and underwriters on a wide range of U.S. and international capital markets and leveraged finance transactions, including IPOs, other equity offerings, and convertible and high-yield debt issuance. He has worked on transactions in sectors ranging from technology and telecommunications to basic industry. He also advises corporate clients in areas including corporate governance and SEC and Sarbanes-Oxley matters, and advises investment banks on securities-law-related matters.

Experience highlights

Recent Transactions
  • IPOs for Bausch + Lomb, Excelerate Energy, P10, Inc. Life Time Group, a.k.a Brands, On Running, Thoughtworks, Sportradar, Weber, Ryan Specialty Group, Kaltura, Integral Ad Science, Nayax, Aveanna Healthcare, Sun Country Airlines, Hayward Holdings, loanDepot, Apria, Home Point Capital, ZIM Integrated Shipping Services, Shoals Technologies Group, Dream Finders Home, Array Technologies, American Well Corporation, Max Stores Ltd, Oak Street Health, Rocket Companies, Rackspace, Jamf Holdings, Warner Music Group, TFI International, Silvergate Capital Corporation, Tradeweb, Chewy’s and Hilton Hotels
  • High-yield debt offerings for, Brookfield Asset Management, Lannett Company, Macy’s, Uber, Uniti Group, iHeartMedia, YUM! Brands, Energizer Holdings, XPO Logistics, Clear Channel Outdoors, Quicken Loans, GameStop, Hilton Hotels, Bausch Health, LyondellBasell, Spectrum Brands, Zebra Technologies, Nuance Communications, Hexion, Dun & Bradstreet, McGraw Hill Education, Seagate, Hovnanian, Western Refining, Digicel Group and NXP B.V.
Capital Markets
  • Primary partner for ExxonMobil, Ford Motor Company, PPL Corporation, Weber, On Running, Uniti Group Inc., Aptiv PLC, Bausch Health, ICL Group, among others
  • Michael has represented major investment banks, including Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan and Morgan Stanley, as underwriter’s counsel.
  • As co-head of our Israel practice, Michael has advised clients including American Well (Amwell), Max Stock, Nayax, Perion, Taboola and Valens.
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SEC adopts final SPAC rules



Chambers USA – Capital Markets: Debt & Equity: Eastern United States, Star Individual

Chambers Global – Capital Markets (Expertise Based Abroad), Israel

IFLR1000 – Capital Markets, United States, Market Leader

Legal 500 U.S. – Capital Markets (Debt Offerings and Equity Offerings), Hall of Fame

Legal 500 U.S. – Capital Markets: High-Yield Debt Offerings

IsraelDesks Legally Israel 100 – Leading Individual

Best Lawyers – “Lawyer of the Year,” Securities/Capital Markets Law, New York City, 2022 and 2024

Law360 – “Capital Markets MVP of the Year,” 2015

American Lawyer – “Dealmaker of the Year,” 2012

Who’s Who Legal – Capital Markets: Lawyer of the Year, 2021

J.D., Harvard Law School
  • magna cum laude
A.B., Harvard University
  • summa cum laude
Law Clerk, Hon. Marie L. Garibaldi, Supreme Court of New Jersey, 1995-1996
Professional history
  • Davis Polk since 1996
Qualifications and admissions
  • State of New York
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