Paul 'Chip' L. Lion III

Paul 'Chip' L. Lion III


University of California, Davis (B.A., 1979)
Santa Clara University School of Law (J.D., 1982)
New York University School of Law (LL.M., 1983)

Bar Admissions


Chip Lion is a partner in the Corporate Finance Group with Morrison & Foerster LLP in Palo Alto California where he leads the firm’s Palo Alto Corporate Finance Group and is the firm-wide co-chair of firm’s Private Funds Group. Mr. Lion regularly advises institutional investors and fund sponsors in connection with the formation of venture capital funds, leveraged buyout funds, real estate opportunity and other private equity funds.

Mr. Lion represents both public and private companies in a broad range of industries and sectors, including biotechnology, finance, medical device and the information technology sectors. He has extensive experience in structuring, negotiating and advising clients on a wide variety of acquisition transactions and related matters, including stock acquisitions, asset acquisitions, mergers, divestitures, auction transactions, tender offers, defensive strategies, leveraged buy-outs and cross border transactions.

In addition to representing businesses and business leaders, Mr. Lion has served in numerous leadership positions of the Business Law Section of the American Bar Association, representing its 50,000 members on cutting edge business issues. Mr. Lion served as Chair of the Section in 2014-2015 and held other officer positions, including Vice-Chair, where he served as editor-in-chief of Volume 68 of The Business Lawyer, the highly regarded journal of the Section, and Secretary of the Section (2011-2012), where he served as co-editor-in-chief of the Section's online monthly magazine. He is the Past Chair of the Venture Capital & Private Equity Committee of the Section.

Mr. Lion’s clients include:

  • Venture and private equity funds:
    • Longitude Capital (life sciences venture capital firm),
    • Mithril Capital (growth stage investment fund),
    • Anthem Ventures (technology venture capital firm),
    • MAP Royalty, Inc. (fund focused on royalty interests associated with gas fields and renewable energy products),
    • The Capital Partnership Group (private investment office and asset manager),
    • GSSG Solar (solar developer)
    • Others, including Lightspeed Venture Partners, NEA, Frazier, 5 AM
  • Company Side Representation, including financings, IPOs and M & A transactions)
    • Saba Software (NASDAQ: SABA) (enterprise education marketplace),
    • MarketShare Partners LLC (marketing analytics), sold to Neustar, Inc.
    • Mediconnect Global, Inc. (medical record retrieval), sold to Verisk Analytics (NASDAQ VRSK),
    • Microfabrica, Inc. (micromachining, additive manufacturer)
    • Circuit Therapeutics, Inc. (treatments from Optogentics),
    • Suitable Technologies (robotics),

Mr. Lion is nationally recognized for his work with Limited Liability Companies (LLCs). He has written and edited numerous articles, outlines, and books on LLCs and partnerships and has participated on many panels on LLCs, including the American Law Institute — American Bar Association LLC satellite telecast for the past 20 plus years. As former Chair of the Partnerships Committee of the Business Law Section of the California State Bar, he formed and participated in the Committee that drafted the California LLC Act that became law on September 30, 1994. He has served as an advisor to the Uniform Limited Liability Company Act, the Revised Uniform Limited Company Act, and the Revised Uniform Partnership Act Drafting Committees of the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws. From 1984-1990 Mr. Lion was an adjunct lecturer at law for the Santa Clara University School of Law.

Chip Lion is recognized in Legal 500 US 2017–2018 for Investment Fund Formation and Management: Private Equity Funds (including venture capital) and Best Lawyers In America 2010–2019 for Corporate Law.

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