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Michael Davis

Mr. Davis is a partner in Davis Polk’s Corporate Department, practicing in the Mergers and Acquisitions Group. He advises U.S. and international corporate and private equity clients on a full range of transactions, both domestic and cross-border, including mergers, acquisitions, investments, joint ventures and collaborations, spinoffs and restructurings, special committee representations and defensive and corporate governance advice.

Work Highlights


U.S./International Mergers and Acquisitions Transactions
  • Baker Hughes on its combination with GE Oil & Gas
  • ABB on its pending $2.6 billion acquisition of GE Industrial Solutions
  • Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma on its pending acquisition of NeuroDerm
  • Bertelsmann on its investment in Penguin Random House to increase its stake to 75%
  • Anacor Pharmaceuticals on its acquisition by Pfizer
  • Biotie Therapies on its sale to Acorda Therapeutics

  • Charles River Laboratories on its acquisition of WIL Research

  • Brinker International on its acquisition of Pepper Dining Holding
  • Prosensa on its acquisition by BioMarin

  • Baker Hughes on its proposed merger with Halliburton

  • Daiichi Sankyo on the merger between Ranbaxy and Sun Pharmaceuticals
  • Smith & Nephew on its acquisition of Arthrocare
  • Maidenform on its acquisition by Hanesbrands

  • Warner Chilcott on its acquisition by Actavis

  • Heinz on its acquisition by Berkshire Hathaway and 3G Capital

  • Bertelsmann on various transactions including the formation of Penguin Random House

  • Penguin Random House on the sale of Author Solutions
  • RTL Group on various transactions
  • Dai-ichi Life on its strategic alliance with Janus

  • Thomas & Betts on its sale to ABB

  • Cigna on its acquisition of HealthSpring

  • Citigroup on various transactions

  • Private equity sponsor clients on various transactions

  • Various Japan-U.S. cross-border transactions, including Daikin on its acquisition of Goodman Global, NEC on its acquisition of Convergys' Information Management business, Toyo Seikan on its acquisition of Stolle Machinery Company and Shionogi on its acquisition of Sciele Pharma and its strategic collaboration with Egalet

  • Various other private equity and venture capital transactions


Mr. Davis is consistently recognized as a leader in the legal industry:

  • Chambers USA – Corporate/M&A, Leading Individual
  • IFLR1000 – “Rising Star” 
  • Legal 500 Latin America

Of Note

  • Member, Committee on Mergers, Acquisitions & Proxy Contests, New York City Bar
  • Speaks regularly as a panelist on a variety of topics, including most recently at:
    • Practising Law Institute’s 16th Annual Private Equity Forum
    • "The Future of Global-Style Governance and Shareholder Activism in Japan," co-hosted with Mergermarket
    • Japan Society’s seminar on "Activism, Independence, Stewardship – Current Trends in U.S. and Japanese Corporate Governance"
    • The Trout Group’s Private Company Showcase
    • 9th Annual Wall Street Unplugged seminar for life science companies

Professional History

  • Partner, 2007-present
  • London office, 2003-2004 
  • Associate, Davis Polk, 1999-2007 
  • Associate, Mallesons Stephen Jaques, 1998


  • 450 Lexington Avenue
    New York, NY
    P: +1 212 450 4184
    F: +1 212 701 5184

Bar Admissions

  • State of New York


  • LL.B., University of Tokyo, Faculty of Law, 1996
  • LL.B., Sydney Law School, 1997
    • First Class Honours
    • University Medal
  • LL.M., Harvard Law School, 1999


  • Japanese