David Johnson

Joined firm 1991. Partner since 2000.

David heads one of the firm’s corporate groups and has over 25 years’ experience advising on a wide range of corporate transactions, commercial agreements and governance matters. He has particular expertise in public and private M&A transactions, joint ventures and equity financings. David acts for a number of listed companies, including BAT, BHP, Cineworld, GlaxoSmithKline, IAG, Marston’s, SEGRO and The Restaurant Group.


His recent significant transactions include advising:

  • BHP on the proposed verification of its dual listed company structure
  • BHP on the US$294m disposal of its 33.3% interest in the Cerrejón energy coal joint venture in Colombia to Glencore
  • Fattal Hotel Group on its co-investment in various Leonardo London hotels and associated financial restructuring
  • Arrow Global Group on the recommended £563 million cash offer by Sherwood Acquisitions
  • IAG on its rights issue to raise up to €2.75 billion
  • Cineworld on its US$3.6 billion acquisition of Regal Entertainment and issues of equity warrants and US$213 million convertible bonds
  • Marston’s on its brewing joint venture with Carlsberg A/S
  • William Hill on its equity placing to raise £224 million and its recommended £2.9 billion cash takeover by Caesars Entertainment
  • GlaxoSmithKline on the formation of a new world-leading Consumer Healthcare joint venture with Pfizer, its £3.1 billion sale of Horlicks and other consumer healthcare nutrition brands to Unilever and numerous other M&A transactions
  • The Restaurant Group on its acquisition of Wagamama, the restructuring of its Leisure Group through a CVA and placing and open offer to raise £175 million
  • SEGRO on its rights issue to raise £573 million and placing to raise £680 million

David is named as a leading individual in the ‘Corporate/M&A: High-end Capability’ in Chambers UK 2021, Chambers Europe 2021 and Chambers Global 2021. He is also listed as a leading individual for ‘Life Sciences: Transactional’ in Chambers UK 2021 and listed in the ‘M&A: Premium Deals’ section of the Legal500 UK 2021.

Key quotes:

“David Johnson is admired by sources for his ability to “give very good advice, both legally and commercially, to his clients.” Chambers UK 2020

"David is excellent, and always keeps responsibility for the work." Chambers UK 2021