Rob Lystad is a corporate and M&A lawyer who regularly advises public and private companies, private equity sponsors, ESOP participants, and others in connection with domestic and international mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, debt and equity financings and other corporate and commercial matters.  He has represented clients in a variety of industries, with an emphasis on FinTech, technology, creative advertising, and food/agribusiness.

Mr. Lystad represents companies in all phases of the corporate life cycle, including initial formation and capitalization, restructurings and recapitalizations, corporate governance, and significant commercial transactional matters.  As a result of his broad corporate and commercial practice, Mr. Lystad regularly serves as “outside general counsel” to growing privately-held companies.

With respect to employee stock ownership plans (or “ESOPs”), Mr. Lystad regularly advises clients in the utilization ESOPs for shareholder liquidity, including the sale of stock to ESOPs (both partial sales and complete change of control transactions) and mergers and acquisitions of ESOP companies. 

Mr. Lystad’s practice also includes strategic advice and counsel regarding the commercialization of products and services and the negotiation of various domestic and international agreements for financial technology companies, merchants, brand owners, food and beverage manufacturers, and professional services companies.

Mr. Lystad has been a registered lobbyist for over 12 years. There, he provides local governments, public and private companies, and business associations with regulatory and legislative representation in the State of Georgia.

Professional Affiliations

    • State Bar of Georgia – International Law Section, Executive Committee
    • Technology Association of Georgia – FinTech Society, Steering Committee Member
    • BayPay Atlanta – Host Partner
    • The ESOP Association – Member
    • Georgia Chamber of Commerce – Government Affairs Committee
    • BayPay Atlanta – Host Partner
    • The ESOP Association – Member
    • Georgia Chamber of Commerce – Government Affairs Committee
    • Georgia Chamber of Commerce – Government Affairs Committee
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Representative Experience

Recent Representative M&A Matters:

  • Represented the institutional trustee of an ESOP with regard to the sale of stock of a Houston-based energy services company to a strategic buyer.
  • Represented an Ohio-based firearms and sporting goods distributor in the spin-out of certain payments and inventory management assets to a strategic buyer.
  • Represented an Indiana-based payment facilitator and processor of credit and debit card payments to government agencies with regard to the sale of 100% of its stock to a private equity-backed strategic buyer.
  • Represented the institutional trustee of an ESOP with regard to the sale of stock and related corporate structuring transactions of a New York-based loan consolidation and alternative lending company to a newly formed ESOP.
  • Represented the leading provider of mobile payment solutions to municipalities and parking providers around the world, with regard to its contribution of key assets and establishment of a joint venture with the largest US operator of private parking facilities.
  • Represented the institutional trustee of an ESOP with regard to the merger of a partially ESOP owned Southeastern-based insurance brokerage company with and into a publicly traded strategic buyer.
  • Represented an Atlanta-based commercial printer in a management buy-out and recapitalization transaction.
  • Represented a national promotional and event planning company in its sale of assets to a publicly traded strategic buyer.
  • Represented the institutional trustee of an ESOP with regard to the sale of stock and related transactions of a South Florida-based real estate services company to a newly formed ESOP.
  • Represented the leading provider of mobile payment solutions to municipalities and parking providers around the world with regard to its reorganization and recapitalization transaction involving an international, publicly traded automobile manufacturer and its related technology-centric subsidiaries.
  • Represented the Carolinas franchisee and the Arizona and New Mexico franchisee of an international, publicly traded party supply company in each franchisee’s sale of assets back to its franchisor.
  • Represented the institutional trustee of an ESOP with regard to the sale of stock and related spin-off transactions of a Birmingham-based custom home builder to a newly formed ESOP.

Recent Representative Commercial Matters:

  • Represented two New Jersey-based casinos in their implementation of payments solutions in connection with their establishment of online gaming platforms.
  • Represented an Athens-based emerging technology company in corporate formation, successful accelerator exit, and commercialization transactions with regard to its authentication technology for use in the financial services sector.
  • Represented an Atlanta-based emerging technology company in commercialization of its payments switching technology.
  • Represented a nationally recognized luxury retailer in its refresh of its in-store and online payments platforms, including its branded payment card programs.
  • Represented a loyalty card program manager in its acquisition of physical and virtual prepaid card inventories.
  • Represented an internationally recognized, publicly traded toy manufacturing company in regard to its creative advertising transactions, including creative and development and planning and buying (US and international) engagements with both large holding-company structured advertising agencies and boutique advertising agencies.
  • Represented a nationally recognized, publicly traded quick service restaurant in regard to its creative and advertising transactions, including creative and development and planning and buying engagements.
  • Represented the Americas subsidiary of an international food and beverage company in regard to its product development and supply engagements.

Recent Representative Government Affairs Matters:

  • Represented a publicly traded waste management and recycling company in all legislative and regulatory issues in the State of Georgia, including issues impacting taxation and tax credits, materials diversion, waste disposal, recycling and recycling mandates, and sustainability.
  • Represented a Georgia-based property and casualty insurance company in all legislative and regulatory issues in the State of Georgia, including issues impacting taxation, accounting rules, compliance with interstate compacts, and bad faith litigation.
  • Represented an international pharmaceutical company with respect to all legislative issues in the State of Georgia, including issues impacting pharmaceuticals, biologics, biosimilars, and health care funding.
  • Represented the largest county in the State of Georgia in all legislative issues, including issues impacting county governance, annexation and de-annexation, transit funding, and healthcare funding.
  • Represented a nursing home and a medical device manufacturer with respect to regulatory issues impacting the ability to utilize certain medical devices in certain medical settings.
  • Representing restaurant groups, international retailers, manufacturers, and importers regarding compliance with Georgia state and local government regulations impacting the manufacture, transportation, and sale of alcoholic beverages.