Legal Business Blogs

Cooley to gain $11.5m worth of shares following Snap float

Palo Alto trailblazer Cooley is the holder of shares worth more than $11.5m following the float of Snap on the New York Stock Exchange yesterday.

Initial public offering (IPO) documents stated the firm’s partners and associates own, through the firm’s investment vehicle GC&H Investments, 239,800 shares of Class A stock in the tech company and 239,800 Class B stock.

After Snap’s float gave a closing price of $24 a share, Cooley’s stock is valued at $11.5m. The float of 200 million shares on Thursday gave SNAP an overall valuation of $28bn.

Tech-focused firms in the Silicon Valley market like Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati and Cooley have been known for taking equity in deference of fees in fast growth start-ups.

Snap was founded in 2011 by chief executive Evan Spiegel, who developed the picture messaging app Snapchat.

Cooley advised Snap on the IPO, while Boston firm Goodwin Procter won the mandate to advise the underwriters.

Cooley corporate and securities partner Eric Jensen led the advice for Snap. Cooley global co-head of capital markets David Peinsipp and partner Seth Gottlieb also advised on the deal.

Goodwin’s team was led by partners Richard Kline, An-Yen Hu and Anthony McCusker.

Snap’s San Francisco in-house team was led by general counsel Chris Handman and associate general counsel Atul Porwal. Handman, who was previously a litigation partner at Hogan Lovells until 2014, was revealed to receive $475,000 as his 2016 base salary in the IPO documents.

Snap also uses US law firm Munger, Tolles & Olson for legal advice, where Evan Spiegel’s father, John Spiegel, is a partner, although not the company’s legal adviser. The tech company paid Munger $305,000 in 2014, $50,000 in 2015 and $294,000 in 2016 respectively.

The float represents the biggest tech IPO since Chinese ecommerce giant Alibaba, which raised $25bn in 2014. While legal fees have not yet been revealed for Snap, Alibaba’s IPO netted advisers Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and Sullivan & Cromwell $15.8m.