Press Release

Cooley Launches Chicago Office

Leading partners from three global law firms combine to transform the legal landscape for Midwest innovators, companies and investors
May 17, 2021

Chicago – May 17, 2021 – Cooley has launched in Chicago, uniting an array of preeminent Chicago-based lawyers from three major law firms. For the first time, an elite Silicon Valley law firm is opening an office to serve the thriving Midwest ecosystem, home to high-growth, disruptive companies, a burgeoning venture capital community, and some of the largest and most sophisticated companies, including many of the most recognizable tech and life sciences brands in the nation. The addition of this group of top legal talent to Cooley’s unique platform, which is widely recognized as a leader in venture capital financings, M&A, IPOs and fund formations in the new economy, brings an unmatched combination of prowess and scale to the market.

The 10-partner launch team – including nine lateral partner arrivals from DLA Piper, Latham & Watkins and Winston & Strawn – creates Cooley’s 17th office worldwide and allows Cooley to attract additional prestigious legal talent in building a full-service Chicago office, including a bench of elite litigators expected to join in the next few months. This high-profile group embodies Cooley’s entrepreneurial brand and ethos, which is focused on providing deep counsel to companies and investors from startup to IPO and beyond. By partnering with market leaders and visionaries, Cooley will continue to foster innovation and exceptional growth of new-economy companies in Chicago and the Midwest.

“Chicago and Cooley align perfectly,” said Joe Conroy, Cooley’s chairman and CEO. “As the financial and innovation hub of the Midwest and home to many of our game-changing clients, including high-growth, disruptive companies, venture capitalists fueling the market and established Fortune 500 companies, we look forward to opening an office in a city and region where we have loved to work for decades.”

The office launch team includes Chicago’s top-tier legal advisers to emerging, high-growth and new-economy companies, counseling clients throughout their life cycle – from formation to financings to their most strategic transactions, including IPOs and mergers and acquisitions. These founding partners have decades of collective experience advising a wide range of clients, both in the Midwest and around the globe, and are recognized as leading lawyers within Chicago’s legal and business communities.

“Cooley’s unique platform allows us to guide our clients holistically and collaboratively in a transformative way that we believe no other firm can match,” said Yvan-Claude Pierre, a corporate and capital markets partner at Cooley who led the expansion and will split his time between Chicago and New York. Cooley vice chair Mike Lincoln, who led the expansion alongside Pierre, added: “Expect continued and substantial growth following this launch.”

The founding partners include Rick Ginsberg, Laurie Bauer and Greg Grossman, who focus on emerging companies and venture capital; Christina Roupas and Courtney Tygesson, who specialize in capital markets and public companies; M&A partner Erin Kirchner; fund formation partner Zach Robert; employment partner Ryan Vann; and New York-based executive compensation and benefits partner Nyron Persaud.

According to Ginsberg, who arrives from Winston & Strawn, “Cooley has a long history of being at the forefront of the intersection of law and business in working with innovative entrepreneurs and investors to build companies. Each of my fellow founding partners feels fortunate to be part of the launch team, which is dedicated to representing Cooley as the premier, distinctive and inclusive law firm of the next generation and building something truly impactful for the community.”

“Chicago’s creative, diverse and entrepreneurial spirit reflects Cooley’s collaborative culture and our mutual decision to unite and create something with truly limitless potential,” added Bauer, who arrives from Latham & Watkins. Grossman, who joins from DLA Piper, said, “We believe that the launch of Cooley in Chicago represents an inflection point and the opportunity to bring to bear a style and approach that will benefit the ecosystem in our region for high-growth, disruptive companies.”

Founded in 1920 in San Francisco, Cooley has grown nationally and globally and now works with 6,000+ innovative, high-growth private company clients, from pre-formation founder teams to many of the largest and most sophisticated companies in the world, including more than 35% of the US-based unicorns. Cooley has been the #1 law firm advising companies going public across all industries since 2014 and the #1 law firm for venture-backed IPOs across all industries for 15+ years, according to IPO Vital Signs and PitchBook, and has established itself as a go-to destination for SPAC and deSPAC transactions. Cooley is a trusted boardroom insider to public companies, their boards and board committees on high-stakes and complex matters, serving as principal corporate governance and securities counsel for 190+ public companies.

About Cooley LLP

Clients partner with Cooley on transformative deals, complex IP and regulatory matters, and high-stakes litigation, where innovation meets the law.

Cooley has 1,200 lawyers across 17 offices in the United States, Asia and Europe.

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