Freshfields, Fenwick & West advise on Johnson & Johnson’s $13.1bn acquisition of Shockwave

Purchase of heart tech-maker Shockwave Medical is latest in series of deals to bolster J&J’s cardiac health division

A Johnson & Johnson MedTech office in California Michael Vi /

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Fenwick & West are advising on Johnson & Johnson’s acquisition of heart-focused medtech company Shockwave Medical in a deal valued at $13.1bn.

Freshfields is advising Johnson & Johnson, while Fenwick & West is advising Shockwave. The transaction is the latest in a string of similar acquisitions for the pharma and medtech giant’s cardiac health division, including a $16.6bn purchase of heart failure and recovery medtech developer Abiomed in 2022. Johnson & Johnson was repped by Cravath Swaine & Moore while Sullivan & Cromwell advised Abiomed. In November, it also bought heart-tech maker Laminar for $400m upfront plus potential add ons.

In the latest deal, Johnson & Johnson agreed to buy all outstanding Shockwave shares for $335 per share in cash, a 17% premium to the stock’s closing price in March when the deal was first announced, Reuters said. Reuters valued the deal at $12.5bn, based on London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG) data. Santa Clara, California-based Shockwave makes intravascular lithotripsy (IVL) technology designed to treat cardiovascular disease caused by calcified arteries.

Joaquin Duato, chairman and CEO of Johnson & Johnson, said: “The acquisition of Shockwave and its leading IVL technology provides a unique opportunity to accelerate our impact in cardiovascular intervention and drive greater value for patients, shareholders and health systems.”

The Freshfields team is being led by M&A partners Damien Zoubek, Jenny Hochenberg and Sanjay Murti, and includes partners Nicole Foster and Sarah Ghulamhussain on executive compensation and benefits matters; partner Claude Stansbury on tax matters; partner Vinita Kailasanath on intellectual property matters; partners Daniel Cendan and Nabeel Yousef on regulatory matters; partners Christine Lyon and Brock Dahl on data privacy matters; and counsel Jeremiah Nelson on real estate matters.  

The Fenwick team included corporate partners Doug Cogen and Bomi Lee, technology transactions partner Stefano Quintini and executive compensation partner Matt Cantor.

Freshfields was the top ranked non-US firm in LSEG’s M&A global legal advisor league tables in the first quarter of the year, working on 43 deals worth almost $41bn, elevating it to 14th spot. Healthcare-related transactions accounted for $85.3bn of deals in the opening three months, which saw overall global deal value clock in at $797.6bn, a 38% jump on the same period in 2023.

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