Christopher Capel has extensive experience advising emerging and established companies, both privately and publicly held, in corporate, securities and technology law matters. His practice emphasizes mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance (including public offerings and private placements of securities), intellectual property and technology licensing and transfer, and public company reporting and compliance. In addition, he regularly assists companies and investors with strategic alliances and collaborations, joint ventures and other corporate partnering arrangements. These matters involve a variety of industries, including a focus on the pharmaceutical, biotech, medical device and other life sciences areas. Frequently, these matters involve international transactions. Clients describe Chris as "a very strong lawyer with a solid corporate practice” who is “very competent and well respected” (Chambers USA). He also advises companies and their directors and officers on corporate governance matters and other general corporate and business law matters.
Christopher also focuses on venture capital and private equity transactions, representing private equity firms, venture capital funds and corporate investors, as well as venture capital-backed companies, university spin-outs and start-ups.
Prior to Smith Anderson, Christopher practiced in New York City with a global law firm. He is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and New York. Before entering law practice, he was a corporate banker with Wachovia Bank. Christopher received his law degree from the University of North Carolina, where he graduated with honors and was on the Law Review.
Areas of Focus
- Best Lawyers®, Biotechnology and Life Sciences Practice; Corporate Law; Mergers & Acquisitions; Securities / Capital Markets; Securities Regulation; Venture Capital (2006-2022)
- Best Lawyers®, "Lawyer of the Year," Raleigh Securities Regulation (2020) and Securities/Capital Markets Law (2014, 2017, 2019)
- Business North Carolina Legal Elite, Business Law
- Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business, Corporate/M&A (2006-2023)
- "Highly Regarded," IFLR1000: The Guide to the World's Leading Financial Law Firms, M&A (2018-2021)
- Martindale-Hubbell: AV Preeminent Rated
- National Eagle Scout Association
- Federal Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable Sam J. Ervin III, United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit
University of North Carolina, J.D., with honors, 1985
University of North Carolina, A.B., 1979
Bar & Court Admissions
- New York
- North Carolina
- American Bar Association
- New York Bar Association
- North Carolina Bar Association
- Past Chair, Business Law Section
- Past Chair, Business Organizations Committee, Business Law Section
- Past Co-Chair, Legal Opinion Committee, Business Law Section
- Board of Directors and Executive Committee, North Carolina Biosciences Organization (NCBio)
- Past Director, North Carolina Arts in Action
- Past Director, Ruth Sheets Adult Day Care Center
- Past Trustee, Board of Trustees, Edenton Street United Methodist Church
- Past Director, Alice Aycock Poe Center for Health Education
- Past Director and Past Chairman of the Board of Directors, ArtSpace, Inc.
- Past Member, Board of Visitors, Saint Mary's School
- Advised a Nasdaq-listed medical device company in the acquisition of a global leader in neuromodulation and rehabilitation medical devices for up to $110 million in up-front and contingent consideration.
- Advised a Nasdaq-listed pharmaceutical development company in the acquisition of a specialty dermatology company for up to $51 million in up-front and contingent consideration.
- Advised a clinical-stage biotech company and its founder in a definitive agreement to be acquired by a private biotech company, in exchange for equity ownership in the buyer.
- Advised a provider of clinical trial contracting and payment services, and its investors, in its merger with a provider of complementary services.
- Advised a China-based biopharmaceutical company on its world-wide Intellectual Property License and Collaboration Agreement with a U.S. publicly-traded, clinical-stage biotechnology company.
- Represented a Nasdaq-listed global medical device company in its minority investment in a developer of an innovative wound healing therapy.
- Advised a provider of identity verification data in its acquisition by a global financial information company.
- Advised a publicly traded, global tobacco company on its $50 billion merger with another major publicly traded tobacco company.
- Represented a Nasdaq-listed bank holding company in a public offering of depositary shares representing interests in preferred stock for aggregate proceeds of $345 million.
- Represented a Nasdaq-listed bank holding company in a public offering of subordinated notes for aggregate proceeds of $350 million.
- Advised a multinational Fortune 500 provider of product development and integrated healthcare services in its merger with a NYSE-listed global information and technology services company, creating a leading information and tech-enabled healthcare service provider. The equity market capitalization of the joined companies was more than $17.6 billion at closing.
- Joint venture between our client, the world's largest public company provider of biopharmaceutical development services and commercial outsourcing services, and the world's leading public company provider of diagnostic information services, to form a global clinical trials laboratory services business with initial annual revenues of approximately $575 million.
- Merger of our client, a publicly-traded developer of diagnostic tests, with one of the largest clinical laboratory companies in the U.S.
- Private placement offering of securities by our client, a clinical-stage biotech company, to individual and institutional investors.
- In-license of university-developed intellectual property by our client, a newly formed medical device company.
- Formation and funding of specialty pharmaceutical company by our clients, a group of venture capital investors, and related in-license of pharmaceutical product rights from a global pharmaceutical company.
- Collaboration/strategic alliance between our client, a global provider of biopharmaceutical development services and commercial outsourcing services, and a global, Japan-based pharmaceutical company for the development of pharmaceutical products on a risk-sharing basis.
- Divestment by our client, a global pharmaceutical, vaccines and consumer health company, of pharmaceutical product rights to a specialty pharmaceutical company.
- License by our client, a publicly-traded specialty pharmaceutical company, from another specialty pharmaceutical company of pharmaceutical intellectual property rights.
- Venture capital financing transaction involving our client, an emerging technology company.
- License and acquisition by our client, a global specialty pharmaceutical company, of pharmaceutical intellectual property from a global pharmaceutical company and related sub-licenses from other global pharmaceutical companies.
- Supply and manufacturing contracts involving our client, a publicly-traded specialty pharmaceutical company, and out-sourced contract manufacturers for bulk product and finished product.
- NewsSmith Anderson Gains Four More Chambers Ranked Practitioners Across Practices in 2023 Chambers USA Guide
- NewsIn a ‘Momentous Transaction,’ Smith Anderson Client First Citizens Buys Silicon Valley Bridge Bank
- RecognitionBest Lawyers® and Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch Recognizes 98 Smith Anderson Attorneys in Latest Publication
- Smith Anderson Gains Four More Chambers Ranked Practitioners Across Practices in 2023 Chambers USA GuideChambers USANews
- The New York Times, Forbes, Bloomberg Law, Law360, The DealNews
- Best Lawyers® and Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch Recognizes 98 Smith Anderson Attorneys in Latest PublicationBest Lawyers®Recognition
- Chambers USA
- Hitting a New Milestone - 100 Members of Smith Anderson’s Legal Team Recognized by Best Lawyers® and Best Lawyers: Ones to WatchBest Lawyers
- IFLR1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms Ranks Smith Anderson’s M&A and Finance Practices and Five Firm LeadersIFLR1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms
- Smith Anderson Shines in 2021 Chambers USA with Most Band 1 Practice Rankings of Any NC-Based Law FirmChambers USA
- Smith Anderson’s M&A and Finance Practices and Five Lawyers Ranked by IFLR1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law FirmsIFLR: 1000 The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms
- 2021 Best Lawyers® and The Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch Recognize Largest Group of Smith Anderson Lawyers in Firm’s HistoryThe 2021 Best Lawyers®
- Chambers USA
- Smith Anderson Leads “Best Lawyers®” Rankings with 71 Recognized Lawyers and 11 “Lawyers of the Year” - Most of Any Raleigh Law FirmThe Best Lawyers in America©
- IFLR1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms Ranks Smith Anderson’s M&A and Finance Practices and Four Lawyers
- Chambers USA
- North Carolina Super Lawyers Recognizes Forty Smith Anderson Lawyers as Super Lawyers and Rising Stars in 2019Super Lawyers
- Smith Anderson Named a Tier 1 M&A Firm in IFLR1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms
- The Best Lawyers in America©
- Chambers USA
- Smith Anderson Strengthens its National Technology Transactions Practice with the Addition of Darrell Fruth
- 2018 North Carolina Super Lawyers Recognizes Forty-three Smith Anderson Lawyers as Super Lawyers and Rising StarsSuper Lawyers
- The Best Lawyers in America©
- Chambers USA
- Super Lawyers
- Smith Anderson Assists in Advising British American Tobacco in Merger Agreement with Reynolds American
- 2017 The Best Lawyers in America© Guide Recognizes 62 Smith Anderson Lawyers – Most in the Firm’s History
- Chambers USA
- News & Observer
- 2016 The Best Lawyers in America© Guide Lists 60 Smith Anderson Lawyers – Most in the Firm’s History
- Smith Anderson Represents General Parts International in $2.04 Billion Merger with Advance Auto Parts
- Smith Anderson Announces 49 of its Firm Lawyers are Named a “Best Lawyer” by The Best Lawyers in America® 2013
- Chambers USA 2012 Distinguishes Twelve Smith Anderson Partners Among America’s Leading Lawyers for Business
- Jackson Moore and David Hayden Speak at the North Carolina Bar Association’s 2012 Business Law Institute on Contracting with the Federal Government
- Chambers USA 2011 Recognizes Eleven Smith Anderson Partners Among America’s Leading Lawyers for Business
- Smith Anderson Sponsors Biotech/Life Science 2011 Conference - Sponsorship Complements Partners’ Board Service and Life Sciences Practice
- Smith Anderson Sponsors Biotech 2010 Conference - Sponsorship Complements Partners’ Board Service and Life Sciences Practice
- Christopher Capel, Lacy Reaves and Gerald Roach, Smith Anderson Partners, Named 2010 “Lawyers of the Year” by Best Lawyers
Publications & Alerts
- Breaking: North Carolina Supreme Court Confirms that Dissenting Shareholders Are Entitled to No More than Deal Price in First Impression Merger Appraisal Rights CaseAlert
- Deal Price is King in Appraisal Rights Actions in North Carolina Where Merger Process Bears “Objective Indicia of Fairness”
- Smith Anderson’s M&A and Finance Practices and Four Lawyers Ranked in IFLR1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms
- Tips for Using New Statutory Ratification Procedure to Cure Defects in Authorizations of Share Issuances and Other Corporate ActionsPublished by NCBA Business Law Section Blog