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How to Prepare an Initial Public Offering 2013

Author(s): Laird H. Simons III, Deanna L. Kirkpatrick
Practice Area: Accounting, Corporate & Securities, Litigation
Published: Apr 2013
PLI Item #: 41419
CHB Spine #: B2016

Ms. Kirkpatrick is a partner in Davis Polk’s Corporate Department. As a senior member of the firm’s Capital Markets Group, her practice includes public equity, equity-linked, debt and other securities offerings by U.S. issuers. She has regularly worked for issuers and underwriters in connection with capital markets transactions, including initial public offerings, as well as convertible and exchangeable securities offerings.

Ms. Kirkpatrick has worked on offerings for issuers over a broad spectrum of industries, including financial institutions, health care, oil and gas, retail, media, utilities and special-purpose acquisition companies.

Work Highlights

Ms. Kirkpatrick has represented issuers such as Comcast in recent securities offerings and has advised issuers such as BATS Global Markets and Limited Brands on corporate governance and securities law matters. 

She has also represented major investment banks, including JPMorgan Chase, Citi, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley as underwriters’ counsel in equity offerings and convertible and exchangeable offerings, and regularly advises investment banking clients on securities law-related matters.


Ms. Kirkpatrick is consistently recognized for her work in the legal industry:

  • Euromoney LMG Americas Women in Business Law Awards – “Best in Capital Markets,” 2013
  • Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business

Of Note

  • Finance Partner, Davis Polk & Wardwell, responsible for overseeing the firm’s finances
  • Regularly participates as a speaker on various PLI panels


  • Committee on Financial Reporting, New York City Bar


  • Co-Author, “Role of the Law Firm” in Nasdaq’s Going Public: A Guide for North American Companies to Listing on the U.S. Securities Markets

Laird H. Simons III
Partner, Securities Group

Former Chair
Securities Group

Laird Simons was Chair of the Securities Group for 18 years, member of the Executive Committee for eight years and Managing Partner for four years at Fenwick & West LLP. The firm specializes in a full array of services to high technology companies, including Internet companies, computer software and electronics corporations, telecommunications companies, semiconductor manufacturers and medical device and life sciences companies. Laird concentrates his practice in initial public offerings (for both domestic and foreign corporations), follow-on offerings for already public companies and ongoing securities advice and counseling for public companies.

Laird has worked on more than 80 initial public offerings for a wide range of high technology companies, including:

  • @Home Corporation
  • Alliance Semiconductor Corporation
  •, Inc.
  • Broadbase Software, Inc.
  • Cadence Design Systems, Inc.
  • CardioGenesis Corporation
  • Cooper & Chyan Technology, Inc.
  • eBay Inc.
  • Edify Corporation
  • Elantec Semiconductor, Inc.
  • Electronic Arts
  • ESS Technology, Inc.
  • Exodus Communications, Inc.
  • Genelabs Technologies, Inc.
  • Glu Mobile Inc.
  • GoRemote Internet Communications, Inc.
  • Green Dot Corporation
  • HNC Software, Inc.
  • Information Storage Devices, Inc. ? Insignia Solutions Inc.
  • Integrated Systems, Inc.
  • Infoblox Inc.
  • Intuit Inc.
  • Macromedia, Inc.
  • Macrovision Corporation
  • NetScreen Technologies, Inc.
  • Oak Technology, Inc.
  • Ocular Sciences, Inc.
  • ONSALE, Inc.
  • Oracle Systems Corporation
  • Prism Solutions, Inc.
  • Sierra On-Line, Inc.
  • Symantec Corporation
  • Talarian Corporation
  • Technology Modeling Associates, Inc.
  • The 3DO Company
  • VeriSign, Inc.
  • VERITAS Software Corporation
  • Versant Object Technology Corporation

He has also worked on more than 40 follow-on offerings for the above and other companies.

Laird has represented a number of underwriters, including Cowen & Company, Credit Suisse First Boston, Deutsche Banc Alex. Brown, Deutsche Bank Securities, Deutsche Morgan Grenfell, Goldman Sachs & Co., Hambrecht & Quist, J. P. Morgan Securities Inc., Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch & Co., Morgan Stanley & Co. Incorporated, NationsBanc Montgomery Securities, Needham & Company, Piper Jaffray & Co., RBC Capital Markets and Robertson Stephens, in initial public offerings and follow-on offerings for companies such as DemandTec, Omniture, O2Micro, Pixar and SolarWinds.

Laird is a member of the State Bar of California. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree with honors in 1970 from Haverford College, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. He received his J.D. and his M.B.A. with distinction in 1974 from Harvard Law School and Harvard Business School.

He has co-chaired the Practising Law Institute’s multi-city program on initial public offerings for 20 years and is a regular speaker on a variety of securities topics.

Laird's accolades include:

  • Silicon Valley “Lawyer of the Year” in Securities/ Capital Markets Law, Best Lawyers, 2013
  • Top Securities Attorney, Best Lawyers, 2006-2014
  • Northern California Super Lawyer, Securities and Corporate Finance, 2004, 2006-2013
  • America's Leading Lawyers for Business, Chambers USA, 2001, 2003-2006
  • Best Corporate Lawyers in America, Corporate Counsel, 2006
  • Silicon Valley's Top Lawyers, San Jose Magazine, 2003
  • One of 12 Dealmakers of the Year, The American Lawyer, 1999