Michael Herman Partner General Counsel

Speaks:  English

Year of Call: 1982 - Ontario

Primary phone: +1 416-369-7281

Fax: +1 416-862-7661

Email: michael.herman@gowlingwlg.com

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Primary office:  Toronto

Michael Herman

Michael Herman is a partner in Gowling WLG's Toronto office and past co-leader of the firm's Corporate Finance, M&A and Private Equity Group. His practice focuses on business law, particularly mergers and acquisitions.

With more than 30 years of experience, Michael is highly regarded as a strategic adviser to a broad range of clients, in particular, entrepreneurial, privately held companies, and mid-market private equity funds and investment institutions. He has extensive experience acting for clients on a broad range of corporate and business matters, including M&A, corporate development and corporate finance.

In addition to his background in private practice, Michael spent a number of years in senior executive positions at various multi-national public corporations, where he was responsible for strategic planning and direction, asset acquisitions and dispositions, strategic partnerships, debt and equity offerings, corporate governance and other corporate-wide marketing and investor relations activities.

Michael also serves as the general counsel to the firm.

Career & Recognition

Filter timeline:


  • American Bar Association
  • Canadian Bar Association
  • Law Society of Upper Canada

Recent presentations

  • "Ethics and the Lawyer's Dilemma, Riding the Elephant," Gowlings, May 16, 2013
  • "Ethics and the Lawyer: Psychological Traps," Gowlings, June 14, 2012 (with Delee Froman)
  • "Ethics and the Lawyer's Dilemma: Introduction and Role of the Lawyer," Gowlings, May 21, 2012
  • "Ethics and the Lawyer's Dilemma: Role of the Lawyer," Gowlings, October 25, 2011
  • "Ethics and the Lawyer's Dilemma: Introduction," Gowlings, June 15, 2010
  • "Ethics and In-House Counsel's Dilemma," presentations in 2010-2013 to: Association of Corporate Counsel (Ontario); CIBC; Bank of Montreal; Worker's Safety and Insurance Board; BCE Inc.; Manulife Financial; Royal Bank of Canada; Research in Motion Limited; Unilever Canada Inc.; Target Canada Co.; Canadian Transport Lawyers Association Annual Conference
  • "Great Governance for Growth" Workshop, Ontario Bioscience Innovation Organization, October 23, 2013
  • "Directors and Officers Conflict of Interest - The Business Judgment Rule," Gowlings, May 15, 2012
  • "Business Judgment Rule - Fiduciary Duties Arising from Administration of Assets and for Approving Transactions," Gowlings, November 16, 2011

Recent articles

  • "Doing Business in Canada: A Guide for U.S. and International Investors" (Co-author and editor), in "Location Canada," a special supplement to Area Development magazine, a U.S. publication
  • "Mergers and Acquisitions Activity in Canada: Is It a Solution to the Funding Crisis?" in Biotechnology Focus magazine, November 2009, Vol. 12, No. 11
  • "Recent Developments in Merger & Acquisitions," the Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory, 15th Edition
  • "Mergers & Acquisitions: Recent Development of Importance," Lexpert/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada, 2011
  • "Mergers & Acquisitions: Recent Development of Importance," (co-author) the Lexpert/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada, 2012
  • "Canadian Life Science Deals and Investments: 2011 Year in Review," Life Sciences & Law, Gowlings, 2012/13
  • "Negotiations and Ethics: The Lawyer's Dilemma," Canadian Transport Lawyers Association Annual Conference, 2012

Michael has acted as counsel on merger and acquisitions, strategic transactions and corporate financings, including recently acting as counsel to:

  • Noranco Inc. and its shareholders on a sale of all shares to a U.S. private equity fund and a Canadian pension plan
  • A leading hotel owner and manager on the sale of a minority interest and a convertible debt investment by a private investor
  • A leading pet food company on the sale of a specialty pet food distribution subsidiary to its joint venture partner
  • A leading architectural firm on the acquisition of another firm and a interior design company
  • A private equity fund on the formation of a strategic partnership with a leading architectural firm
  • A mattress and bedding manufacturer on the acquisition of manufacturing facilities and the intellectual property of a competitive mattress manufacturer
  • A refinancing of credit facilities for a leading architectural firm
  • A new engineering firm in connection with its formation, initial financing, governance arrangements and expansion
  • A leading hotel owner and manager on the restructuring of the ownership of its portfolio of properties into a single entity and a refinancing of its credit facilities
  • A leading pet food company on the acquisition of the assets of a food processing manufacturer and the completion of strategic transition arrangements
  • A transportation logistics company on the sale of its assets to a U.S.-based company operating in the same industry
  • Samina-SCI, a leading U.S. electronics manufacturing services provider, on the acquisition of BreconRidge Corporation
  • A leading Ontario pension fund on investments in various infrastructure and energy funds and the formation of single investor funds with leading global investment managers.
  • Various not-for-profit entities on general corporate, governance, employment and general contract matters