Boston College Law School
JD, 1993, summa cum laude, Order of the Coif

Executive Editor, Boston College Law Review

Dartmouth College
BA, 1989, cum laude



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    52 attorneys at the firm – 79 percent of the firm’s equity partners – have been selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2016.  Read more...

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    Over one-third of equity partners and majority of practice areas recognized for excellence

Brian P. Lenihan

Business Department Co-Chair

t 617-248-4929   f 617-248-4000

“a great negotiator … has the gravitas that comes with experience" 

Chambers USA

Brian Lenihan is co-chair of the firm’s Business Department. He has been named to The National Law Journal’s annual list of “Mergers & Acquisitions Trailblazers.”  He is listed in Best Lawyers in America for corporate and venture capital law, in Massachusetts Super Lawyers in the areas of corporate law and mergers & acquisitions, and has been recognized in Chambers USA as a leading lawyer in the area of private equity: venture capital investment.  Mr. Lenihan is named in The Legal 500 for Private Equity Buyouts and Venture Capital and Emerging Companies.

Practice Focus

Private Equity:  representation of private equity and venture capital funds in a broad range of financing transactions (leveraged buyouts, majority and minority recapitalizations and growth equity investments).

Business & Technology:  corporate transactions for private technology companies, including all types of mergers, acquisitions, venture capital financings and cross-border transactions.  Regularly acts as special counsel to Canadian issuers and investors in cross-border transactions with US-based acquirers and capital sources.  Represents founders, senior executives and other significant stockholders of privately-held companies in negotiating and structuring initial capitalization and recapitalizations, stock redemptions, buyouts and severance packages. 

Representative Clients:  Century Capital Partners, Celtic House Venture Partners, Spectrum Equity Investors, Summit Partners and Tudor Ventures.

Representative Engagements

  • Represented private equity investor in sale of portfolio company (telecommunications maintenance provider) to strategic acquirer.
  • Represented private equity investor specializing in insurance and financial services industries in minority recapitalization of domestic insurance company, minority recapitalization of specialized insurance broker and formation of Bermuda-based run-off reinsurance company.
  • Represented private equity syndicate in leveraged buyout of online bill payment company.
  • Represented private equity investor in minority recapitalization of investment advisory firm.
  • Represented private equity investor in $100 million leveraged buyout of financial services software company.
  • Represented private equity investor and portfolio company in $100 million acquisition and accompanying leveraged recapitalization of portfolio company in telecommunication maintenance area.
  • Represented private equity investors in minority recapitalization of high-end audio manufacturer.

Presentations and Publications

  • “Private Equity and Strategic Investors:  How Canadian CEOs Choose their Equity Partner,” moderator, Canadian Venture Capital Association Conference, May 2014.
  • “Cross-Border Legal and Tax Issues,” panelist, M&A International’s M&A in the Americas Conference, June 2013.
  • “Transactional and Operational Challenges and Strategies for International Growth,” panelist, Thriving in a Global Economy, June 2013.
  • “Unlocking Value in the Face of Uncertainty,” moderator, MIT Sloan Private Equity Symposium, May 2012.
  • “Q&A With Choate’s Brian Lenihan,” featured, Private Equity Law360, November 2011.
  • “The SEC Changeup on Private Equity Fund Registration,” co-author, Corporate Finance Law360, August 2011.
  • "The Right Investor: VC or Strategic," panel co-moderator, Ontario Venture Summit, Ottawa, October 2010. 
  • "Building Sustainable Operating Improvements into Portfolio Companies," moderator, Canadian Venture Capital Association Conference, May 2010. 
  • “Growth Equity,” moderator, MIT Sloan Private Equity Symposium, April 2010. 
  • “Private equity sees signs of life after dreary stretch,” quoted, Boston Business Journal, October 2009. 
  • "Before You Leap - Ways to Structure and Enforce a Contract to Avoid Litigation," panelist, Association of Corporate Counsel – Northeast Chapter Conference, Waltham, March 2009.
  • "As Private Equity Slows, Big Strategic Buyers Enter Fray," quoted, Boston Business Journal, May 2008.

Professional and Community Involvement

Mr. Lenihan is a member of the firm’s Executive Committee. He is a member of the American, Massachusetts and Boston Bar Associations.  Mr. Lenihan is on the task force of the Committee on Negotiated Acquisitions of the ABA Business Law Section that creates the annual “Private Target Mergers & Acquisitions Deal Points Study.”



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