Gregory E. Ostling


Gregory E. Ostling

Gregory E. Ostling is a corporate partner at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz.  He focuses primarily on mergers and acquisitions, shareholder activism defense and corporate governance.

Greg has repeatedly been recognized as a leading lawyer by, among others, American LawyerAmLaw Daily and Super Lawyers magazines.  He is chairman of the International Mergers & Acquisitions/Joint Venture Committee of the New York State Bar Association, and frequently speaks on international panels regarding current trends in mergers and acquisitions and corporate governance.

Greg has advised a broad range of public and private companies and financial sponsors in the United States and abroad in a variety of industries, including:


  • Actelion in its $30 billion sale to Johnson and Johnson
  • Genzyme’s Independent Board of Directors in its response to an unsolicited takeover bid by Sanofi-Aventis and in the subsequent $20 billion negotiated sale to Sanofi-Aventis
  • Medivation in its $14.6 billion acquisition by Pfizer

Oil and Gas/Energy

  • Anadarko in its pending $60 billion sale to Occidental
  • Spectra Energy in its $28 billion merger with Enbridge
  • Halliburton in its proposed $28 billion acquisition of Baker Hughes
  • ConocoPhillips in its $15 billion joint venture with EnCana Corporation, $5 billion joint venture with Origin Energy, and the $20 billion spin-off of the company’s Refining & Marketing businesses
  • Mirant in its $3.1 billion merger with RRI Energy
  • Powersecure in its $425 million sale to Southern Company
  • United American Energy in its sale to DLJ Merchant Banking Partners


  • MeadWestvaco Corporation in its $16 billion merger with RockTenn, its $1 billion spin/merger of its Consumer & Office Products business with ACCO Brands Corporation and its $1.5 billion sale of US timberlands to and development joint ventures with Plum Creek and against an activist campaign by Starboard Value
  • Alcoa in its $14 billion purchase with the Aluminum Corporation of China of an interest in Rio Tinto
  • Cooper Industries plc in its reincorporation to Ireland and its $11.8 billion sale to Eaton
  • Dresser-Rand in its $7.6 billion acquisition by Siemens
  • Centex in its $3.1 billion sale to Pulte Homes
  • WestRock in its $2.5 billion spin-off of its Specialty Chemicals business
  • W.R. Grace & Co. in its $2 billion spin-off of its Construction Products business and its agreement with 40 North to add two directors to the board
  • GCP Applied Technologies in its $1.05 billion sale of Darex Packaging Technologies to Henkel
  • Steward & Stevenson in its $800 million sale to Armor
  • LSB Industries against activist campaigns by Starboard Value and Engine Capital


  • Phillips-Van Heusen in its $2.9 billion acquisition of the Warnaco Group, $3 billion acquisition of Tommy Hilfiger, acquisition of the Arrow brand and various securities offerings
  • Office Depot in its $1 billion acquisition of CompuCom
  • Pinault Printemps-Redoute in its $1 billion divestiture of its Contract Stationery Business to Office Depot

Media and Entertainment

  • Gaming and Leisure Properties in its $5.1 billion acquisition of Pinnacle Entertainment’s real estate assets
  • Knight Ridder against an activist campaign by Private Capital Management and in the subsequent $4.5 billion negotiated sale to The McClatchy Company
  • Penn National Gaming in its $2.8 billion acquisition of Pinnacle Entertainment, $575 million divestiture transaction with Boyd Gaming and its $315 million sale-leaseback with Gaming and Leisure Properties
  • The National Geographic Society in its $725 million expansion of its media joint venture with 21st Century Fox
  • Joshua Harris and David Blitzer in their $320 million acquisition of The New Jersey Devils and the lease to the Prudential Center
  • Rodale in its $205 million sale to Hearst
  • AT&T in its sale of The Salt Lake Tribune to MediaNews
  • IFILM in the sale of its OTX business to an investor group
  • Martha Stewart Living in its acquisition of The Wedding List

Financial Services

  • AG Edwards in its $7 billion acquisition by Wachovia
  • Marsh & McLennan in its $6.4 billion acquisition of Jardine Lloyd Thomson and its $1.2 billion sale of Kroll to Altegrity
  • Aspen Insurance against a $3.2 billion hostile takeover bid by Endurance
  • RenaissanceRe in its pending $1.5 billion acquisition of Tokio Millenium Re and its $1.9 billion acquisition of Platinum Underwriters
  • Various clients, including the New York Stock Exchange, for potential listing on the Shanghai Stock Exchange and the development of a PRC International Board for non-PRC companies
  • Mountainbank Financial in its sale to The South Financial Group


  • AT&T in its $44 billion merger with MediaOne, its $5 billion acquisition of IBM’s Global Network Business, its $1.7 billion acquisition of Vanguard Cellular Systems, its $11 billion offer of AT&T Wireless tracking stock, its transfer of cable systems with Comcast and its acquisition of an interest in Net2Phone
  • Motorola against activist campaigns by Carl Ichan, and its initial public offering/spin-off of Freescale Semiconductor and spin-off of Motorola Mobility
  • Instinet in its $1.9 billion sale to Nasdaq and its $174 million sale of Lynch, Jones and Ryan to The Bank of New York

Financial Sponsor

  • Apollo in its $27.8 billion buy-out of Harrah’s Entertainment with Texas Pacific Group and sale of Pallecon
  • Goldman Sachs, AIG, Carlyle and Riverstone in their $22 billion buy-out of Kinder Morgan
  • Hellman & Friedman in its acquisition of Blackbaud and LPL Financial Services

Greg received an A.B. in Political Science from Columbia University in 1991 and a M.A. in Educational Theory from Columbia University’s Teachers College in 1992.  He received a J.D. from the Columbia University School of Law in 1998, where he was a Kent Scholar and a Teaching Fellow.  Prior to law school, Greg was a teacher in China and a professional soccer player.  Greg lives in Manhattan with his wife and three sons.

Recent Publications