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Eric L. Schiele

Partner, Corporate

Eric Schiele is a partner in Cravath’s Corporate Department. His practice primarily encompasses public and private mergers and acquisitions and board advisory work, including hedge fund activism defense.

Mr. Schiele has been repeatedly recognized as a leading lawyer in mergers and acquisitions. He was recognized for his M&A work by Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business from 2015 through 2017 and by IFLR1000 from 2015 through 2018. Mr. Schiele was named to Lawdragon’s list of the “500 Leading Lawyers in America” in 2016 and 2017. He has also been recognized by The Legal 500 for his transactional work in the media and entertainment industry in 2017, for his transactional work in the telecoms and broadcast industry in 2014 and 2017, for his transactional work in the technology industry in 2015 and for his skill in the capital markets arena from 2011 through 2013.

Corporate clients that Mr. Schiele has represented include, among others, Time Warner, Heinz, Anheuser‑Busch InBev, Northrop Grumman, Yahoo, Honeywell, DreamWorks Animation, Johnson & Johnson, Zale Corporation, Graham Holdings (formerly The Washington Post Company), Cable ONE, Toll Brothers, IBM, Sapient and Xerox. Mr. Schiele has also represented a number of financial institutions, including J.P. Morgan, Goldman, Sachs & Co. and Centerview Partners. His representative M&A transactions include representing:

  • Time Warner on a number of M&A transactions, including its pending $109 billion sale to AT&T, the unsolicited proposal from 21st Century Fox to acquire Time Warner and its acquisition of 100% of truTV
  • Honeywell in its $90 billion proposal to acquire United Technologies and its $300 million sale of Honeywell Technology Solutions to KBR
  • Anheuser‑Busch InBev in its $123 billion acquisition of SABMiller and the $12 billion sale of SABMiller’s U.S. and global Miller branded businesses to Molson Coors
  • Northrop Grumman in its pending $9.2 billion acquisition of Orbital ATK
  • The Strategic Review Committee of the Board of Directors of Yahoo in the $4.48 billion acquisition of Yahoo’s operating business by Verizon
  • DreamWorks Animation in its $4.1 billion sale to Comcast, its acquisition of Classic Media and the formation of Oriental DreamWorks with China Media Capital and Shanghai Media Group
  • Cable ONE in its $735 million acquisition of NewWave Communications
  • Montpelier Re Holdings in its $1.83 billion acquisition by Endurance Specialty Holdings
  • H.J. Heinz and 3G Capital in Heinz’s $60 billion merger with Kraft Foods Group to form The Kraft Heinz Company
  • Sapient in its $3.7 billion acquisition by Publicis
  • The transaction committee of the board of directors of Norwegian Cruise Line in the $3.025 billion acquisition of Prestige Cruises International by Norwegian
  • Zale Corporation in its $1.46 billion sale to Signet Jewelers and its related successful proxy fight with TIG Advisors
  • Toll Brothers in its $1.6 billion acquisition of the home building business of Shapell Industries
  • The Washington Post Company in the $250 million sale of its newspaper publishing businesses, including The Washington Post newspaper, to Jeff Bezos
  • IBM in several public and private transactions, including its acquisitions of SoftLayer Technologies, Ascential and Micromuse and the sale of its worldwide customer care business process outsourcing services business to SYNNEX, as well as in the formation of Open Invention Network
  • Time Inc. in the sale of its Parenting Group, Time4 Media and Grupo Expansión businesses and in its acquisition of QSP
  • Starbucks Coffee in its $620 million acquisition of Teavana
  • Flagstone Reinsurance Holdings in its $623 million sale to Validus Holdings
  • Green Brick Partners (formerly BioFuel Energy) in its $275 million acquisition of the equity interests of JBGL Builder Finance and certain subsidiaries of JBGL Capital from Greenlight Capital and James R. Brickman
  • A collection of different companies in connection with merger and acquisition transactions in the pharmaceuticals industry, including Johnson & Johnson in its acquisition of Omrix Biopharmaceuticals, Millipore Corporation in its acquisition of Serologicals, Biovail Corporation in its financing in connection with its merger‑of‑equals with Valeant Pharmaceuticals and its acquisition of the worldwide tetrabenazine business of Cambridge Labs
  • Chevron Corporation in its contested acquisition of Unocal
  • The Board of Directors of MCI in connection with the contested acquisition of MCI by Verizon
  • Sprint in its merger with Nextel
  • The Brink’s Company in its sale of BAX Global
  • Overseas Shipholding Group in its acquisition of Maritrans

Mr. Schiele is a market leader in spin‑offs and other alternative separation and acquisition transactions, including representing:

  • Time Warner in its spin‑offs of Time Inc., AOL and Time Warner Cable
  • Honeywell in its spin‑off of its Resins and Chemicals business into a new independent public company, AdvanSix
  • Xerox in its spin‑off of Conduent
  • Graham Holdings in its spin‑off of Cable ONE and its $1.1 billion split‑off transaction with Berkshire Hathaway
  • Kraft in the spin‑off of its $30 billion North American grocery business
  • Turner Broadcasting in its split‑off of the Atlanta Braves
  • Various clients in PIPE transactions, including Zale Corporation in its PIPE financing with Golden Gate Capital and Jacobs Private Equity in its control‑PIPE acquisition of XPO Logistics

Mr. Schiele also has extensive experience in hedge fund activism defense, including engagements with, among others, Carl Icahn, Trian, Relational, Elliot Management and Greenlight Capital.

Mr. Schiele is a frequent speaker on M&A topics, including co‑chairing PLI’s Hot Topics in Mergers and Acquisitions conferences in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 and chairing its Shareholder Activism conference in 2016.

Mr. Schiele was born in Columbus, Ohio. He received a B.A. summa cum laude from Ohio Wesleyan University in 1996 and a J.D. with Highest Honors from the University of Texas School of Law in 2000, where he was a member of the Chancellors honor society and an Associate Editor of the Texas Law Review. He joined Cravath in 2000 and became a partner in 2008. From November 2014 to October 2017, Mr. Schiele served as the Firm’s Corporate Hiring Partner.

Mr. Schiele may be reached by phone at +1‑212‑474‑1788 or by email at

+1 (212) 474-1788
+1 (212) 474-3700