Jonathan L. Awner
Jonathan L. Awner
One Southeast Third Avenue
25th Floor
Miami, FL 33131

Jonathan Awner has broad experience in public and private securities transactions, mergers and acquisitions, and private equity investments. He is a frequent speaker on corporate governance and compliance issues and has been recognized as a leading lawyer by Chambers USA and The Legal 500. Jonathan served as chair of Akerman's national Corporate Practice Group for 15 years.

Jonathan regularly serves as counsel to boards of directors, audit and special board committees, and senior executives of public companies with respect to corporate governance issues, management succession, relationships with institutional investors, compensation practices for directors and officers, conflict of interest matters, and change-of-control transactions. His committee representations include leading investigations of alleged management misconduct, whistleblower complaints, stock option backdating, accounting irregularities, auditor resignations, violations of securities laws including insider trading, and in response to shareholder concerns involving lack of operating performance or excessive compensation.

Jonathan has served as lead counsel to issuers in an aggregate of more than $4 billion in underwritten public equity and debt offerings, including a $1.5 billion IPO, the largest initial public offering ever of a Florida-based company. In addition, he has been counsel to public and private companies and investor groups in private placements of equity and debt securities, including early stage and other venture capital financings, raising an aggregate of more than $1 billion.

Represented XPO Logistics, Inc. (NYSE: XPO), one of the fastest growing providers of transportation logistics services, in connection with its $365 million acquisition of 3PD Holding, Inc., the premier provider of heavy goods, last-mile logistics in North America, its $26.6 million acquisition of Optima Service Solutions, LLC, and in a $500 million universal shelf registration statement.
Ongoing representation of Trivest Partners, the oldest private equity firm in the Southeast, in connection with numerous M&A and finance matters for more than 10 years, most recently including the recapitalization of North Star Seafood, Inc. by Trivest Fund V, LP, a new $415 million fund dedicated to investing in founder/family-owned businesses, and the subsequent acquisition of Florida's Finest Seafood LLC by North Star Seafood; and numerous transactions for Trivest Fund IV, including its acquisitions of Pelican Water Systems, Take Five Oil Change, LLC, OnePath Holdings LLC, Confiance IP Solutions Inc., Transparent Technologies, Inc., and Endeavor Telecom, Inc.
Ongoing representation of HEICO Corporation (NYSE: HEI) in connection with its acquisitions for more than 10 years, including most recently its purchase of Reinhold Industries, Inc. from funds of The Jordan Company, a leading private equity firm, and in universal shelf registration statements.
Ongoing representation of AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE: AN), America's largest vehicle retailer, in connection with its acquisitions and dispositions of car dealerships for more than 15 years, most recently including several transactions that added an aggregate of more than $825 million of annual revenue, including the acquisition of Hyundai of Tempe and SanTan Honda Superstore in Phoenix; the acquisition of Don Davis Toyota Scion in Dallas; the acquisition of Audi, Porsche, and Volkswagen stores in Dallas from Boardwalk Auto Group; and the acquisition of Spring Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram in Houston; also, the disposition of AutoUSA LLC, a premier web-based auto leads provider for car dealers, to Autobytel, Inc.
Ongoing representation of Steiner Leisure Limited (NASDAQ: STNR) in connection with its acquisitions for more than 10 years, most recently including an asset purchase from Cortiva Education by Steiner Education Group, an asset purchase from The Onboard Spa Company Limited by Steiner Transocean, and the purchase of Bliss World Holdings, Inc. from Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Represented China-based Shandong Heavy Industry Group-Weichai Group in connection with its €374 million acquisition of a controlling interest in Ferretti Group of Italy, owner of Miami-based Bertram Yachts.
Represented Republic Services, Inc. in connection with its industry-transforming $12.9 billion merger with Allied Waste Industries, Inc. in 2008.
Represented billionaire H. Wayne Huizenga in connection with his investments in Republic Waste Industries, Inc. in 1995; the Miami Dolphins, Florida Marlins, and Florida Panthers in the 1990's; and Blockbuster Entertainment Corporation in 1987, in addition to hundreds of additional transactions for Mr. Huizenga and companies under his control.

The Best Lawyers in America 2013, Named as "Lawyer of the Year" for Securities Regulation in Miami
The Best Lawyers in America 2005-2014, Listed in Florida for Corporate Governance and Compliance Law, Corporate Law, Leveraged Buyouts and Private Equity Law, Mergers & Acquisitions Law, Securities/Capital Markets Law, and Securities Regulation
The Best Lawyers in America 2012, Named as "Lawyer of the Year" for Mergers & Acquisitions Law in Miami
Chambers USA 2003-2013, Ranked in top tier in Florida for Corporate/M&A & Private Equity
The Legal 500 2009-2013, Recommended for Mergers, Acquisitions & Buyouts: M&A National Middle Market
Florida Trend's Legal Elite 2012, Listed for Business Law
South Florida Legal Guide Top Lawyers 2012, 2014, Listed for Corporate and Business, Mergers & Acquisitions
Super Lawyers Magazine 2006-2013, Listed in Florida for Business/Corporate, Securities & Corporate Finance, and Mergers & Acquisitions
South Florida Business Journal 2009, Key Partners Award Winner for Corporate Finance/Mergers & Acquisitions Law
Daily Business Review 2009, Named "Top Dealmaker: Corporate"
Martindale-Hubbell, AV Rated

Bloomberg BNA Corporate Practice Series, Co-Author, "The Florida Corporation: Legal Aspects of Organization and Operation," 2013
KPMG Audit Committee Institute, Panelist for South Florida Roundtable Series:

"Striking the Right Deal: Oversight of M&A and International Ventures," Winter 2013

"Raising the Board's Game in 2013? Reassessing Critical Areas of Governance," Spring 2013

"The New Business Integrity Challenge," Fall 2012

"Is Governance Keeping Pace?," Spring 2012

"Changes and Challenges Driving the Audit Committee Agenda," Spring 2011

"Risk, Reform and the Audit Committee Agenda under Dodd-Frank," Fall 2010

"Preparing for Growth; Focusing on Controls, Transparency, and Financial Communications," Spring 2010

"Economic Crisis, Uncertainty and Change - A New Era of Corporate Governance," Spring 2009
KPMG and NYSE Euronext, Panelist, "IPO/Capital Markets Bootcamp," April 2013
Grant Thornton LLP Forum, Speaker, "Audit Committee Duties for the Private Company," June 2012
Northern Trust Bank, Speaker, "Preparing for the Sale of Your Closely-Held Company," March 2012
Regulation, Volume 34, No. 2, Co-Author, "Will There Be Whistleblowers?" Summer 2011
Akerman SEC Regulations Seminars, Speaker, January 2011, January 2009, January 2007, April 2003, November 2002, September 2000
American Conference Institute's Forum on Executive Compensation, Speaker, "Negotiating Compensation Packages with Private Companies," May 2007
Daily Business Review, Co-Author, "Sarbanes-Oxley can benefit small firms," August 30, 2005
National Investor Relations Institute 2005 Annual Conference, Panelist, "What Part of Guidance Don't You Understand?," June 2005
KPMG General Counsel Forum, Speaker, "Standards of Professional Conduct for Attorneys under Sarbanes-Oxley," June 2003
PricewaterhouseCoopers, Speaker, "Overview of Sarbanes-Oxley Act," November 2002
Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Panelist, "Audit Committees After Sarbanes-Oxley Act," November 2002
Corporation Accountability After Sarbanes-Oxley, Moderator, September 2002

The Florida Bar, Business Law Section, Member
Greater Miami Jewish Federation, Board Member
Miami Jewish Community Relations Council, Chair
AIPAC, National Council
Ransom Everglades School, Board of Trustees

Associated News, Events and Publications

Jonathan L. Awner


AutoNation Inc.
Heico Corporation
Huizenga Holdings, Inc.
Jacuzzi Brands Corp.
Steiner Leisure Limited
Trivest Partners, L.P.
WCI Communities, Inc.
XPO Logistics, Inc.

J.D., Boston University School of Law, 1985; cum laude
B.A., Swarthmore College, 1982

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