Louis Lehot: Taking Companies from Garage to Global

Meet Louis Lehot, a partner with Foley & Lardner LLP, a preeminent law firm that stands at the nexus of innovative technology, smart manufacturing, the energy transition, healthcare and life sciences. Louis is a prominent corporate lawyer based in Silicon Valley, known for his experience in handling high-profile transactions in each of the tech, healthcare and clean energy industries. As a partner in the firm’s Private Equity and Venture Capital, Mergers & Acquisitions and Transactions Practices, and the Technology, Health Care, Life Sciences, and Energy Industry Teams, he advises entrepreneurs and their management teams, investors, and financial advisors at all stages of growth. 

After beginning my career in New York, I moved to Europe and spent five years advising non-U.S. multinationals on how to access the U.S. capital markets before returning home to Silicon Valley. Passionate about helping businesses and ventures with compelling technologies reach their growth objectives, I specifically enjoy helping companies cross borders, where an appreciation of different cultures and backgrounds is key.” 

Louis is a full life-cycle innovation lawyer, and prides himself on taking on clients from ideation to formation, to financing, to scaling, to hyper-growth, to liquidity and beyond. Louis calls this a “garage to global” practice, focusing on positioning clients to achieve product-market fit, to hyper-growth, going public, and obtaining optimal liquidity events. He and his team are on the forefront of adopting new technologies to innovate the way they do deals. Louis guides emerging private companies as they secure venture capital financing, prepare for IPO or an M&A transaction, focusing on how to navigate the exit. 

Clients routinely turn to Louis for his domain experience in public offerings and private placements of equity, equity-linked, and debt securities, mergers, acquisitions, dispositions, spinoffs, strategic investments, and joint ventures, as well as corporate governance and securities law compliance matters. Louis also regularly represents U.S. and non-U.S. registrants before the SEC, FINRA, NYSE, and NASDAQ. His goal is to help the law firm and his clients grow teams of lawyers to accelerate their business at the closest point of contact.

About Foley and Lardner LLP

Foley & Lardner LLP is a highly respected law firm that looks beyond the law to focus on its clients’ constantly evolving demands and act as trusted business advisors to deliver creative, practical, and effective solutions. Foley’s 1,200 lawyers across 25 offices worldwide partner on the full range of engagements from corporate counsel to IP work and litigation support, providing clients with a one-team solution to all their needs. 

Foley & Lardner is well known for its forward-thinking approach and willingness to try new and innovative methods. Innovation is vital to the law firm’s strategic plan and part of its everyday collective mindset. Foley’s proprietary tools, such as Foley Equipped and Foley Collaborate, exemplify this commitment to innovation and are actively utilized in practice.

Key USPs

Foley is a premier full-service law firm with a collaborative culture and strong core values. The firm provides services to clients in key sectors that align with its core capabilities. These sectors include energy transition, healthcare, life sciences, innovative technology, and smart manufacturing, which have undergone significant transformations in recent years.  Louis and his team at Foley cross geographic borders with clients and follow the innovation everywhere that it has impact, increasing their efforts to help clients stay ahead of the curve in each of these areas.

Motivating Creativity and Innovation

Louis and his team at Foley & Lardner place a strong emphasis on empowering everyone to bring their best selves to work each day. The law firm invests in its people and provides an array of resources to support its attorneys and business professionals. This includes a comprehensive lateral integration program, mentoring programs, and leadership development training. Foley’s commitment to employee well-being is exemplified by its Best Self Program, which recognizes the importance of mental health and burnout prevention. The law firm also has an in-house executive coach who offers career counseling and a peer program to support those struggling with certain life events. 

Major Challenges

Louis believes the legal industry’s major challenges range from how to:

  • respond to the rapid adoption of AI
  • lead with technology to more efficiently, accurately and promptly deliver critical legal services
  • manage business across jurisdictions and cultures (some of which are suffering from cold war or active combat), 
  • manage through economic uncertainty
  • remain competitive for talent
  • respond to the changing in-house legal structures and their approaches toward working with outside firms 
  • compete and collaborate with our clients’ other service providers, from accounting firms to consultants to software

For Louis’s clients, the major challenges ahead can be summarized by how to achieve scalability and hyper-growth in the face of active and cold war (and how to manage a supply chain), how to finance growth in a higher inflation and interest rate environment and selling to customers who are tightening budgets.  Technology innovation should lead the way in addressing these challenges, which will involve organic growth as well as acquisitions.

Looking at the Future

In the next five years of his professional life, Louis aims to position himself to assist his clients and teammates in achieving success through innovative strategies. Louis aspires to continue to cross borders with his clients’ businesses and teammates to help them grow from garage to global and genuinely see them and hear the team wherever they are.

In his personal life, Louis aspires to achieve a healthy physical and mental lifestyle while enjoying his beautiful family and friends as they accomplish their goals.