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Upcoming Event: Understanding the Securities Laws 2021

July 15, 2021

Upcoming Event: Understanding the Securities Laws 2021
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William "Will" S. Smoak, Jr.

William "Will" S. Smoak, Jr.

Partner

One Wells Fargo Center
301 South College Street
23rd Floor
Charlotte, NC 28202
will.smoak@nelsonmullins.com

Will represents private equity sponsors and their portfolio companies, strategic acquirers, business founders, high net worth individuals, and management teams in a broad array of M&A and general corporate activities.

Will’s practice primarily focuses on structuring, negotiating, and executing lower– and middle–market M&A deals for both buyers and sellers. He also has significant experience in closing cross–border...

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Will represents private equity sponsors and their portfolio companies, strategic acquirers, business founders, high net worth individuals, and management teams in a broad array of M&A and general corporate activities.

Will’s practice primarily focuses on structuring, negotiating, and executing lower– and middle–market M&A deals for both buyers and sellers. He also has significant experience in closing cross–border transactions and working productively with foreign counsel. Will has achieved successful results for large national companies, small business owners, and private equity sponsors alike in a broad range of industries, including healthcare, professional services, real estate brokerage, value–added distribution, alternative finance, and business and industrial services.

Will strongly believes that a relationship built on rapport and trust with a business’ principals, as well as with opposing counsel and counterparties, is critical to positive outcomes. He also believes that a deep understanding of the economic value drivers of a business, as well as industry– and company–specific operational and competitive risks, is key to protecting a client’s legal interests in the deal context. Will caters to clients who demand incisive and common sense problem–solving and who expect their lawyer to draw upon the institutional resources and the market experience of a full–service law firm to meet their legal needs in an efficient and timely manner.

William "Will" S. Smoak, Jr.

transactions and working productively with foreign counsel. Will has achieved successful results for large national companies, small business owners, and private equity sponsors alike in a broad range of industries, including healthcare, professional services, real estate brokerage, value–added distribution, alternative finance, and business and industrial services.

Will strongly believes that a relationship built on rapport and trust with a business’ principals, as well as with opposing counsel and counterparties, is critical to positive outcomes. He also believes that a deep understanding of the economic value drivers of a business, as well as industry– and company–specific operational and competitive risks, is key to protecting a client’s legal interests in the deal context. Will caters to clients who demand incisive and common sense problem–solving and who expect their lawyer to draw upon the institutional resources and the market experience of a full–service law firm to meet their legal needs in an efficient and timely manner.

Will represents private equity sponsors and their portfolio companies, strategic acquirers, business founders, high net worth individuals, and management teams in a broad array of M&A and general corporate activities.

Will’s practice primarily focuses on structuring, negotiating, and executing lower– and middle–market M&A deals for both buyers and sellers. He also has significant experience in closing cross–border... transactions and working productively with foreign counsel. Will has achieved successful results for large national companies, small business owners, and private equity sponsors alike in a broad range of industries, including healthcare, professional services, real estate brokerage, value–added distribution, alternative finance, and business and industrial services.

Will strongly believes that a relationship built on rapport and trust with a business’ principals, as well as with opposing counsel and counterparties, is critical to positive outcomes. He also believes that a deep understanding of the economic value drivers of a business, as well as industry– and company–specific operational and competitive risks, is key to protecting a client’s legal interests in the deal context. Will caters to clients who demand incisive and common sense problem–solving and who expect their lawyer to draw upon the institutional resources and the market experience of a full–service law firm to meet their legal needs in an efficient and timely manner.

Experience

Following is a selected sampling of matters and is provided for informational purposes only. Past success does not indicate the likelihood of success in any future matter.

Representative Matters

  • Represented an optometry management services organization and its practice affiliates in connection with dozens of practice acquisitions, including transactions in Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Maryland, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin
  • Represented a North Carolina–based middle–market private equity sponsor in connection with its recapitalization of one of the region’s largest independent ambulatory infusion center operators
  • Represented one of the country’s leading environmental contractors, a portfolio company of a California–based middle–market private equity firm, in four separate add–on acquisitions. Involvement with this client also included serving as outside general counsel to the business, providing advice on executive employment matters, commercial contracting matters, and regulatory matters
  • Represented a global leader in fire and life safety protection engineering, code consulting, and forensics and risk analysis (a portfolio company of a California–based middle–market private equity firm) in four separate domestic add–on acquisitions, as well as four separate international add–on acquisitions with targets based in the United Kingdom, Ireland, South Korea, and Finland. Involvement with this client also included providing advice to the business on executive employment matters and incentive compensation matters
  • Represented a Florida–based private equity firm in connection with its recapitalization of a Louisiana–based industrial contractor specializing in insulation, fireproofing, heat tracing, refractory, and abatement services
  • Represented a Massachusetts–based private equity firm in connection with its sale of a portfolio company providing alternative working capital and ABL financing to a publicly traded business development company
  • Represented a Massachusetts–based private equity firm in connection with its sale of a portfolio company focused on originating small–ticket equipment loans and leases to an affiliate of a sovereign wealth fund
  • Represented a publicly traded commercial real estate services provider in connection with multiple strategic acquisitions, including a Massachusetts–based telecommunications and network infrastructure advisory services firm, a Kentucky–based consulting firm focused on improving the economics of owning and operating healthcare facilities, a Florida–based  commercial real estate appraisal firm, a Texas–based full–service real estate brokerage firm, and a Nebraska–based full–service real estate brokerage firm
  • Represented a New York–based private equity fund in connection with its acquisition of railcars and railcar leases from subsidiaries of a publicly traded Canadian railcar lessor.
  • Represented the founders of a North Carolina–based company specializing in the design, creation, deployment, and management of digital signage media networks in a sale of the business to a portfolio company of California–based private equity acquiror
  • Represented a Virginia–based middle–market private equity firm in connection with the sale of its investment in a leading national provider of online learning solutions to licensed professionals in regulated end markets to a Connecticut–based private equity buyer
  • Represented a Virginia–based fundless sponsor in connection with its acquisition of a full–service provider of residential and commercial plumbing solutions
  • Represented the founders of a New York–based alternative asset manager focused on yield driven investment strategies in connection with formation, governance, and capital–raising matters
  • Represented the founding family of a North Carolina–based furniture design and manufacturing business in connection with a sale to (and equity reinvestment in) an existing portfolio company of a Connecticut–based private equity firm
  • Represented a closely held group of companies (franchisees of one of the country’s largest retail furniture firms) with respect to a minority equity private placement
  • Represented numerous corporate management teams (including public company executives) in respect to negotiating and structuring employment and equity participation arrangements with private equity acquirers

Education

  • Duke University School of Law, JD, magna cum laude (2006)
    • Order of the Coif
  • Davidson College, BA, History, magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa (2002)

Admissions

  • North Carolina
  • Georgia
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia

Clerkships

  • Law Clerk, The Honorable Stephen P. Lamb, Delaware Chancery Court

Practice Areas

The bar rules of some states require that the standards for an attorney's inclusion in certain public accolades or recognitions be provided. When such accolades or recognitions are listed, a hyperlink is provided that leads to a description of the respective selection methodology.

  • North Carolina Bar Association
  • State Bar of Georgia
  • Mecklenburg County Bar Association
  • Member, Myers Park United Methodist Church
  • Member, Parental Advisory Committee, First Presbyterian Church Child Development Center (2021–present)
  • Board Member, Roof Above (formerly Men’s Shelter of Charlotte) (2011–2019)
    • Governance Committee Chair (2014–2019)
  • Board Member, Charlotte Speech & Hearing Center (2011–2018)
    • Board Chair (2015–2016)
  • Board Member, YMCA of Greater Charlotte, Simmons Branch (2008–2013)
  • Member, United Way of Central Carolinas, Young Leaders Council (2008–2013)
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