FacultyFaculty/Author Profile
Stephen L. Gordon

Stephen L. Gordon

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP

New York, NY, USA

Stephen L. Gordon is a partner at Cravath and serves as the Head of the Tax Department.  He advises clients on the tax aspects of mergers and acquisitions and other major transactions, including taxable and tax-free acquisitions and dispositions, spin-offs, international restructurings and corporate joint ventures.  Mr. Gordon also works with clients on issues related to corporate finance and domestic and international taxation.

Mr. Gordon’s recent transactions include representing:

  • AB InBev in its $107 billion acquisition of SABMiller and $12 billion agreement with Molson Coors;
  • Shire in its pending $32 billion combination with Baxalta;
  • Honeywell in its $90 billion proposal to acquire United Technologies;
  • Cigna in its pending $54.2 billion merger with Anthem;
  • Mylan in its pending $9.9 billion offer for Meda, its 2015 proposal to acquire Perrigo in a transaction valued at approximately $35 billion and its 2015 $5.6 billion inversion acquisition of Abbott Laboratories’ non-U.S. developed markets specialty and branded generics business;
  • Cameron International in its pending $15 billion sale to Schlumberger and in the creation of the OneSubsea joint venture with Schlumberger;
  • White Mountains in its $2.2 billion sale of its Sirius reinsurance business to CMI;
  • Ashland in its pending separation of its Valvoline business;
  • H.J. Heinz and 3G Capital in Heinz’s $60 billion merger with Kraft Foods Group to form The Kraft Heinz Company; and
  • Casa Cuervo in an asset swap with Diageo in which Casa Cuervo acquired The Old Bushmills Distillery, including the Bushmills Irish Whiskey brand, and Diageo acquired full ownership and control of Don Julio Tequila plus cash in the amount of $408 million.


Mr. Gordon has been repeatedly cited as one of the country’s leading tax practitioners by, among others, Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business from 2007 through 2015; Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business from 2008 through 2015; The Legal 500 from 2007 through 2015; The Best Lawyers in America from 2007 through 2016; and Who’s Who Legal: Corporate Tax from 2007 through 2014.  In addition, Cravath’s tax practice received the publication’s highest ranking for its ability to handle “any matter thrown at them with poise and flair.”  In 2012, Mr. Gordon was chosen by corporate counsel as one of the BTI Client Service All-Stars for his exceptional commitment to understanding his clients’ legal and business objectives, recognizing client goals and providing innovative and effective solutions tailored specifically to the client’s desired outcome. 

Mr. Gordon was born in Syracuse, New York.  He received an A.B. cum laude from Cornell University in 1978 and a J.D. cum laude from Harvard Law School in 1981, where he was an Editor of the Harvard Law Review.  He joined Cravath in 1981 and became a partner in 1987.  Mr. Gordon has served as the Firm’s Hiring Partner and Managing Partner of Administration.

Mr. Gordon is a frequent speaker at national and international tax conferences, including those sponsored by PLI, ALI-ABA, the Tax Executives Institute and the International Fiscal Association, and is a member of the Tax Forum and the tax sections of the New York State Bar Association and the American Bar Association.


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