A founding member of the firm and named President in August 2013, Matt has more than 18 years of experience providing strategic corporate, financial and crisis communications counsel to Boards of Directors and executive leadership of public corporations and private equity firms involved in M&A, hostile takeovers, proxy contests, shareholder activism defense, spin-offs, reorganizations, financial restructurings, management changes, litigation, regulatory actions and a wide range of corporate crises. His areas of expertise include:
- Shareholder Activism: He has advised many companies in their defense against proxy contests, short attacks and other tactics employed by activist investors. Recent engagements, among others, include: Baxter (Third Point); Viavi formerly known as JDSU (Sandell); Manitowoc (Carl Icahn); Family Dollar (Elliott, Carl Icahn, Trian); Brookdale (Sandell); lululemon (Chip Wilson); Outerwall (JANA); Violin Memory (Clinton); Agilent (Relational); Meritor (Sandell); Lear (Marcato, Oskie); Ferro (FrontFour Capital, Quinpario); Commonwealth REIT (Corvex / Related); Danone (Trian); Gardner Denver (ValueAct); and Oshkosh (Carl Icahn).
- Mergers & Acquisitions: Recent M&A assignments include: Con-way in its sale to XPO Logistics; United Technologies in its sale of Sikorsky Aircraft to Lockheed Martin; Altera in its sale to Intel; Hill-Rom in its proposed acquisition of Welch Allyn; Life Time Fitness in its pending sale to TPG; Smucker in its acquisition of Big Heart Pet Brands; Sapient in its sale to Publicis; ShoreTel in its defense against the unsolicited proposal by Mitel; JDSU in its separation into two independent companies; Family Dollar in its sale to Dollar Tree; Mizkan in its acquisition of Ragu and Bertolli from Unilever; tw telecom in its sale to Level 3; Idenix in its sale to Merck; Energizer in its separation into two independent companies; Zale in its sale to Signet Jewelers; Smithfield Foods in its sale to Shuanghui International; and Gardner Denver in its sale to KKR.
- Investor Relations & Financial Public Relations: He develops and implements comprehensive investor relations and corporate communications programs for clients across a wide range of industries. He also has played a role in numerous corporate reorganizations, financial restructurings, Board and management changes, earnings pre-announcements, regulatory actions, litigation support and other material corporate developments.
In 2012 Matt received The M&A Advisor’s “40 Under 40” Recognition Award, and in 2007 he was named to PR Week’s inaugural “40 Under 40” list. Matt previously was a vice president in the M&A and crisis communications practice at Abernathy MacGregor Frank. He received an MBA from Columbia Business School and a BA in international relations and a BA in communications from the University of Pennsylvania.