William J. Rowe

Baker & McKenzie LLP


William J. Rowe is a partner in the Corporate and Securities Practice Group in Chicago. William assists clients ranging from public Fortune 100 companies to private start-ups with domestic and international mergers and acquisitions. He also leads Baker McKenzie’s North American corporate knowledge and training development program. From 2012 to 2018, he was selected by Illinois Super Lawyers as a Rising Star in Mergers and Acquisitions.

Practice Focus

William frequently acts as lead M&A counsel assisting clients with complex and development strategy driven mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures, including transactions involving venture capital or private equity backed businesses and start-ups, intellectual property driven transactions, carve out transactions and in-bound or outbound geographic expansions through acquisitions. His practice also includes public mergers and acquisition transactions, securities compliance, venture capital investments, co-development agreements and licensing arrangements.

Representative Legal Matters

  • Represented Crane Co., a US public company, on its USD 800 million acquisition of Crane & Co., Inc., a private company supplier of secure banknotes.
  • Represented FedEx in its USD 1.4 billion acquisition of Genco Distribution System.
  • Represented Safran in its USD 710 million sale of its Morpho Detection airport security business.
  • Represented FedEx in the US securities aspects of its USD 4.8 billion acquisition of TNT Express.
  • Represented Ecolab in its USD 8.1 billion merger with Nalco.
  • Represented Medtronic in connection with its USD 816 million acquisition of China Kanghui.
  • Represented the independent committee of the board of directors of Telvent with respect to Schneider Electric USD 2 billion tender offer for all outstanding shares of Telvent.
  • Represented Kao Corporation in its acquisition of Washing Systems, LLC from Gryphon Investors.
  • Represented McDonald’s in its flagship commercial and technology partnership with UberEats.
  • Represented Walgreens in its Specialty Pharmacy and Mail Service Pharmacy Joint Venture with Prime Therapeutics.


  • Illinois~United States (2007)


  • Georgetown University Law Center (J.D. Honors) (2007)
  • Northwestern University (B.A. Legal Studies Honors) (2004)


  • English


Co-author, "The Hidden Value Of Carveout-Specific Due Diligence," Law360, February 2019

Author, "A Small World After All: R&W Insurance in Cross-Border M&A," Deal Lawyers, May-June 2018 

Co-author, "Talent Retention: A Toolkit for M&A," Deal Lawyers, May-June 2016

Co-author, "A Road Map For Combined Acquisition and PAI Due Diligence," Law360, May 2016


Speaker/Faculty, "Closing Business Transactions - Practical Legal Considerations," Practicing Law Institute, November 2017 and 2018