Private Funds

The team is noted for its international capability, with one client praising its “great global network and great knowledge as a group in different areas.”
Chambers Global 2019, Investment Funds

Morrison & Foerster is a fund formation leader

The formation of private funds is complex and highly specialized. Both fund sponsors and institutional investors recognize our global Private Funds Group as leading counsel in this field. We represent fund sponsors and investors in the formation and operation of investment funds of all strategies, including:

  • Buyout
  • Venture capital, growth capital and private equity
  • Distressed, turnaround and special situations
  • Real estate and real asset
  • Infrastructure
  • Credit and private debt
  • Hedge
  • Fund-of-funds

We guide both GPs and LPs effectively through the entire fund formation process. We advise on structural, regulatory, and tax issues, as well as economic terms and fund governance matters. We also advise fund sponsors on fundraising issues and “upper tier” structure and planning, including complex international carried interest, co-investment programs and other incentive arrangements. On the LP side we advise a number of institutional investors on all of their primary and secondary fund investments, as well as co-investments and direct investments. 

We know what’s “market”

We are active players in fund formation transactions. In just the last five years, we have advised fund sponsors and institutional investors in hundreds of funds involving hundreds of billions of dollars in committed capital. Our ongoing involvement in fund formation keeps us on the forefront of constantly evolving deal terms and industry trends. Our market awareness provides our GP and LP clients with significant negotiating advantages in the fund formation process.

We offer the global breadth to handle cross-border fund formations and transactions

Fund formation, investments, and buyouts are increasingly global in scope. Our global Private Funds Group includes lawyers in key financial centers around the world, including:

  • Boston
  • Hong Kong
  • London
  • New York
  • Palo Alto
  • San Francisco
  • Shanghai
  • Singapore
  • Tokyo

Our multi-office teams work together extensively to understand the complex issues involved in cross-border transactions. The global scope of our work allows us to effectively advise sponsors and investors, wherever they are based in the world, in cross-border fundraising and fund formation, as well as to advise private funds on their cross-border investments.

We are a one-stop shop for private funds

We have the resources and credentials, coupled with the ability to tap into our global network of 1,000 lawyers, to advise fund sponsors and private funds through all phases of a fund’s life cycle. We have the experience and breadth to advise on management company formation, spin-outs, and fund and GP restructurings. After assisting in the formation of a fund, we advise the fund on its investments, including:

  • Co-investments
  • Equity investments
  • Public and private buyouts
  • Debt financings
  • Distressed company transactions
  • Secondaries (buy-side, sell-side and GP-led)
  • Strategic alliances

Our lawyers also guide fund sponsors through other day-to-day and bespoke fund operational issues, including, tax, ERISA, investment management, and SEC, AIFMD and other compliance matters relevant to the local jurisdiction. Our experience in these areas allows us to provide cost-effective solutions to a fund throughout its term.

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