Chris E. Hofstad



For approximately 25 years, Chris Hofstad has guided clients in mergers and acquisitions and other complex transactions, commercial and contractual matters, financing and securities, and other business matters. For more than half that time, he also has been in firm leadership and management, including as the leader of the firm's worldwide corporate group and its 200+ professionals and also as the leader of the firm’s worldwide private equity practice.

Mergers and Acquisitions

Chris’ extensive experience in M&A spans a wide variety of industries. He represents buyers, sellers, private equity firms, management, investors, lenders and others.

Corporate Counseling, Commercial and Contractual Matters

Chris advises clients in a multitude of business matters, including:
  • Commercial transactions and contract negotiations
  • Capitalizations, reorganizations, restructurings and dissolutions
  • Governance, fiduciary duties and other equity holder relationships and disputes
  • Full range of other day-to-day business matters

Financing and Securities

Chris represents clients in financing and securities transactions, including:
  • Advising issuers and investors in securities laws
  • Acquisition financings for lenders, borrowers and investors in leveraged buyouts and other complex transactions
  • Private placements of equity and debt

Complex Commercial Arrangements

Chris structures and negotiates complex arrangements, including: joint ventures, strategic partnerships, outsourcing, licensing, development, manufacturing, supply, distribution and technology.

Closely Held Entities and Family-Owned Businesses

Chris understands the unique aspects of closely held businesses, including those that are family-owned. This includes ownership structures, succession planning, generational dynamics, liquidity arrangements and exit strategies.

Sports and Entertainment

He represents professional and amateur sports organizations, venue owners and managers and entertainment organizations, including in league interactions, stadium and arena operations, conventions, food/beverage operations, marketing, licensing, naming rights, brand management and broadcasting.

In-House Counsel

While at Faegre Drinker, Chris served one of Faegre Drinker’s largest clients, on-site, in an in-house counsel role.

Military Experience

Before joining Faegre Drinker, Chris was a highly decorated U.S. Air Force officer. He flew as a fighter pilot and also flew worldwide missions as a reconnaissance pilot. He also held several management positions, including executive officer of a commanding unit responsible for an 8,000-member organization and operations in five countries. He was a distinguished graduate at each of his six formal schools. He was the #1 graduate in all three of his flight training schools and, in his last assignment, was rated as the #1 officer among his 980 contemporaries.


Bar Admissions



University of Minnesota Law School
J.D. magna cum laude, Order of the Coif, Law Review (chief managing editor) (1997)

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
M.A.S. in Aeronautics, with distinction (1993)

Iowa State University
B.S. (1984)

Insights & Events

Leadership & Community

Pro Bono

  • Hunger Related Events: Taste of the NFL
  • Nonprofit booster clubs

Professional Associations

  • American Bar Association — M&A Committee, M&A Trends Subcommittee, Private Equity M&A Subcommittee
  • Minnesota State Bar Association 
  • Hennepin County Bar Association
  • National Security Forum

Civic Activities

  • Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors


  • Best Lawyers® — Mergers and Acquisitions Law, 2020-24
  • Acritas — Star Lawyer, 2018-20
  • Lexology Client Choice Awards, 2018-20
  • The Legal 500 — Corporate Practice, 2013-21
Awards Methodology
No aspect of these recognitions has been approved by the highest court of any state.
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