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Jeffrey A. Ott

Partner | Email

  • Grand Rapids

    t. +1.616.752.2170

    f. +1.616.222.2170

    m. +1.616.540.6594
  • Midland

    t. +1.989.698.3770

    f. +1.989.486.6170

Biography

Jeff Ott has represented businesses and financial institutions for almost 30 years on M&A, compliance with securities laws, and general corporate and business matters. Jeff has successfully completed well over 100 M&A transactions, and his experience features many public company transactions, including tender offers. Jeff regularly counsels publicly traded companies, and their directors, officers and shareholders, on strategic and compliance issues under federal and state securities laws for financial reporting, public offerings, stock transactions, proxy solicitations, tender offers and acquisitions. Jeff is the Chair of the firm's Reporting Companies and Registered Offerings Group.
 

  • Partner, Warner Norcross + Judd LLP, 1989 to present
  • Corporate and securities counsel for publicly traded corporations and financial institutions, including Wolverine World Wide, Inc., Old Kent Financial Corporation, Chemical Financial Corporation, Spartan Stores, Inc. and others
  • Counsel in mergers, acquisitions and sales of corporations and financial institutions
  • Issuer's counsel in public and private securities offerings
  • Special securities counsel in tender offers and proxy contests

Education

  • University of Michigan Law School J.D. 1989 Cum Laude
  • Albion College A.B. 1986 Summa Cum Laude

Admitted

  • 1989, Michigan

Courts

  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan in 1989

Bar Associations

  • American Bar Association
    Business Law Section, International Law Section
  • National Association of Stock Plan Professionals
  • State Bar of Michigan
  • Grand Rapids Bar Association

Languages

  • German

Experience

  • Chemical Financial Corporation (Nasdaq) in its general corporate matters, acquisitions of Lake Michigan Financial Corporation, Monarch Community Bancorp, Inc., Northwestern Bancorp, Inc., O.A.K. Financial Corporation, Caledonia Financial Corporation, Bank West Financial Corporation, Shoreline Financial Corporation, State Savings Bancorp, Inc., Key State Bank, and selected branches of Old Kent Bank and First Financial Bank, N.A., periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, preparation of annual meeting and shareholder communications and preparation of cash- and equity-based executive compensation plans
  • Old Kent Financial Corporation (formerly NYSE) in its sale to Fifth Third Bancorp, general corporate matters, acquisitions of Home Bancorp, Grand Premier Financial, Inc., Merchants Bancorp, Inc., Pinnacle Banc Group, Inc., CFSB Bancorp, Inc., Seaway Financial Corporation, First National Bank Corp., and Edgemark Financial Corporation, listing of shares on the New York Stock Exchange, periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, preparation of annual meeting and shareholder communications and preparation of cash- and equity-based executive compensation plans
  • ChoiceOne Financial Services, Inc. (OTC) in its general corporate matters, merger of equals with Valley Ridge Financial Corp., acquisitions and sales of InsuranceSource, Inc. and Alpine Travel, Inc., acquisition of Bradford Insurance Centre, Ltd., periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, preparation of annual meeting and shareholder communications and preparation of cash- and equity-based executive compensation plans
  • Sturgis Bancorp, Inc. (formerly OTC) in its pending acquisition of West Michigan Savings Bank and going-private reverse merger
  • Southern Michigan Bancorp, Inc. (OTC) in its going-private reverse merger, merger with FNB Financial Corporation, and preparation of annual meeting and shareholder communications
  • Wolverine World Wide, Inc. (NYSE) in its general corporate matters, public offering of shares of Common Stock, disposition of the assets of the Brooks Shoe business and division, periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, preparation of annual meeting and stockholder communications and preparation of cash and equity-based executive compensation plans
  • Spartan Stores, Inc. (Nasdaq) in its public offering of Class A Common Stock, acquisition of J. F. Walker Company, Inc., periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, and preparation of annual meeting and shareholder communications
  • Kysor Industrial Corporation (formerly NYSE) in the cash tender offer by Scotsman Industries, Inc. for shares of Kysor Common Stock, acquisition of Kalt Manufacturing Co., periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, and preparation of annual meeting and shareholder communications
  • Guardsman Products, Inc. (formerly NYSE) in the cash tender offer by Lilly Industries, Inc. for shares of Guardsman Common Stock, periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, and preparation of annual meeting and stockholder communications
  • Dakota Telecommunications Group, Inc. (formerly an Exchange Act Reporting Company) in its conversion from a cooperative association and merger into a Delaware business corporation, periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, acquisitions of TCIC Communications, Inc. and I-WAY Partners, Inc. and merger into a wholly owned subsidiary of McLeod USA Incorporated
  • Shoreline Financial Corporation (formerly Nasdaq) in its general corporate matters, periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, and preparation of annual meeting and shareholder communications
  • Haworth, Inc. in its cash tender offer for all of the outstanding shares of SMED International Inc., and acquisitions of G.S.P. Manufacturing, Inc. and Myrtle Desk Company
  • Hastings Manufacturing Company (formerly AMEX) in its periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, and preparation of annual meeting and shareholder communications
  • Manatron, Inc. (formerly Nasdaq) in its periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, and preparation of annual meeting and shareholder communications
  • Valley Ridge Financial Corp. (formerly Exchange Act Reporting Company) in its general corporate matters, going-private reverse stock split, acquisition and sale of AM Realty, acquisition of Community Bank Corporation, periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, and preparation of annual meeting and shareholder communications
  • Community Bancorp, Inc. in its acquisition of MSB Holding, Inc.
  • Security Trust Company, N.A. (Phoenix, Arizona) in its liquidation and sale of assets to American Stock Transfer and Trust Company
  • Howard Miller Clock Company in its acquisition of the assets of the Woodmark Division of Markwood, Inc.
  • Caradon PLC in its cash tender offer for all of the outstanding shares of Easco, Inc.
  • BRAIN International AG in its acquisition of the stock of CMI-Competitive Solutions, Inc.

Honors & Awards

  • Best Lawyers in America, Banking and Finance Law and Financial Services Regulation Law, 2010-Present
  • Named the Best Lawyers' 2013 Grand Rapids Financial Services Regulation Lawyer of the Year
  • Named to Michigan Super Lawyers, 2017, 2010
  • AV Preeminent Peer Review Rated, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Leading Lawyers Michigan, 2014
  • Phi Beta Kappa
  • Omicron Delta Kappa
  • Omicron Delta Epsilon
  • Mortar Board
  • Lomas Project 250 Leadership Award

News

Leadership

Community Affiliations

  • Habitat for Humanity of Kent County
    Board of Directors (2014-Present)
  • Equest Center for Therapeutic Riding
    President (1999-2005) and Board of Directors (1994-2014)
  • Albion College
    Board of Trustees (2012-Present)

Speaking Engagements

  • Proper Due Diligence, ACG Breakfast Series, May 16, 2018
  • M&A Market Update, Saginaw, Michigan, April 28, 2015

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