Latham, Skadden and Paul Weiss among firms advising on $6.9bn Squarespace take private

Private equity firm Permira is leading the deal, with support from General Atlantic and Accel

Latham & Watkins, Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom, Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison and Cooley are among the legal advisors on private equity firm Permira’s acquisition of website building and hosting business Squarespace in a take-private deal valued at roughly $6.9bn.

Skadden is advising Squarespace on the transaction, while Latham & Watkins is advising Permira. Paul Weiss is advising long-time Squarespace investor General Atlantic, which is re-investing as part of the go-private agreement. Cooley is also advising Squarespace shareholder Accel, which will re-invest in the latest deal. Meantime, Squarespace CEO and shareholder Anthony Casalena is being advised by Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, while Richards Layton & Finger is advising a Squarespace committee of board members.

Under the terms of the deal, Squarespace equity holders will receive $44 per share, a 15% premium over Squarespace’s closing price on 10 May. Casalena will rollover the majority of his existing equity and continue to be one of the company’s largest shareholders. He will also remain as CEO.

David Erlong, a partner at Permira, said: “Squarespace has built a globally recognised creative brand and a design-driven platform of tools that enables entrepreneurs and small businesses to establish and scale their online presence. As a firm with a history of backing leading internet platforms and technologies that enable SMBs to compete globally, we are excited to partner with Anthony and his team to support the company in unlocking its full potential.”

The Skadden team on the deal includes M&A partners Christopher Barlow, Allison Schneirov and Daniel Luks, and associate Lilybelle Davis, as well as capital markets partner Ryan Dzierniejko. All attorneys are located in New York.

The Latham & Watkins team advising Permira include corporate partners Brian Mangino and Mariclaire Petty Brewer in Washington DC and Amber Banks in New York. Private equity financing advice was provided by Washington DC partners Manu Gayatrinath, Katherine Putnam and Melissa Frankel Fabian and counsel Jonathan Shih. There was also support from partners Katharine Moir (tax), David Della Rocca (benefits and compensation), Morgan Brubaker (intellectual property), Amanda Reeves, Katherine Rocco and Héctor Armengod (antitrust), among others.

The Wilson Sonsini team representing Casalena in the transaction included Marty Korman, Todd Cleary, Megan Baier, Amy Simmerman, Catherine Riley Tzipori and Derek Wallace.

The Cooley team was led by partners Ben Beerle, Amelia Runyan Davis, Jamie Leigh and Patrick Gibbs.

And the Paul Weiss team was led by Ellen Ching and Matthew Abbott.

Skadden topped the global M&A legal advisor rankings in the first quarter of the year by deal value, having worked on 45 deals worth $145bn. Paul Weiss was third, working on 33 deals worth almost $147.8bn. Latham was third in the rankings by deal volume, working on 129 deals worth almost $85bn.

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