In the early days, our founders developed a reputation for excellence; F.M. Bass, Frank Berry and Cecil Sims were fastidious, intellectually curious and highly sought after. They pioneered our now robust mergers and acquisitions practice by participating in notable transactions such as the Cheek-Neal Coffee Company, known for Maxwell House Coffee, in its sale to Postum in 1928 for $20 million and by representing Fourth and First National Bank in its merger with American National Bank in 1930. A few years later, Cecil Sims initiated one of the firm’s first alternative fee arrangements, which lasted from 1934 until the late 1960’s, with Vanderbilt University’s Chancellor Kirkland.
Ninety years after its inception, Bass, Berry & Sims continues to lead clients through increasingly complex legal challenges. Our highly skilled attorney teams aim to provide a profound understanding of our clients’ businesses and perspective, sound judgment, efficiency and responsiveness to every matter. Recently, we represented a Nashville-based, leading provider of healthcare services in its leveraged buyout (LBO), which was, at the time, the largest LBO in history; we were engaged as the New York Stock Exchange’s Regulatory Auditor; and we successfully tried the largest case in Tennessee involving the breach of a $1.4 billion merger agreement. We advance opportunities and deliver results.
- “The firm gives good value and they are very good lawyers. They have both experience and expertise.” (from Chambers USA 2020, Intellectual Property Practice Profile)
- “The firm is one of the best I have worked with in my entire career. Their technical expertise and ability to communicate some extremely complicated things is outstanding.” (from Chambers USA 2019, Corporate/M&A Practice Profile)
- “They are our go-to firm for pretty much anything. Their responsiveness and customer service is absolutely excellent, the best I have worked with. I have them on speed dial.” (from Chambers USA 2018, Healthcare Practice Profile)
- “The team is praised for its high-level of expertise and professionalism, as well as its combination of good legal expertise and understanding of the business matters at hand.” (from Chambers USA 2017, Banking & Finance Practice Profile)
- “Excellent, one of the best in the country.” (from Chambers USA 2016, Environment Practice Profile)
- “The firm’s performance was outstanding. I’d put them up there with the big firms globally – some of the finest attorneys I’ve seen.” (from Chambers USA 2015, Corporate/M&A Practice Profile)
- “The team is very knowledgeable and very intelligent – they can foresee potential pitfalls and issues a long time before they come up.” (from Chambers USA 2014, Real Estate Practice Profile)
- “They consistently provide great quality product at a reasonable price. Very caring and professional in their relationships, work ethic and commitment.” (from Chambers USA 2013, Labor & Employment Practice Profile)
- “If I were picking out the best firms around, I’d always start with Bass, Berry & Sims.” (from Chambers USA 2012, Litigation Practice Profile)
- Primary outside counsel to more than 35 public companies
- More than 75 practice groups
- Long-term client relationships: 54% of our clients have been with the firm for 10 or more years
- 4 offices: Nashville, Knoxville, Memphis and Washington, D.C.
- 45 attorneys listed as leaders in Chambers USA 2020
- 8 practices ranked #1 for Tennessee in Chambers USA 2020
- Healthcare practice ranked in Chambers USA 2020 Nationwide category, reporting the team is a “Versatile group that acts on behalf of clients such as physician practice management companies, hospitals, pharmacies and disease management companies. Deep expertise across the healthcare arena, fielding experience in areas such as enforcement actions, operational issues and corporate transactions. Also serves clients within the hospice, private equity and telemedicine sectors. Clients report: ‘They have substantial experience and expertise,’ adding that ‘their risk analysis is extremely accurate and reliable.‘ One client says: ‘they are fantastic as they understand the fast-paced nature of deals, are responsive and offer good value.’” (from Chambers USA 2019).
- M&A Advisor’s “Healthcare & Life Sciences Deal of the Year ($100MM-$1B)” and “Industrials Deal of the Year (Over $1B)” in 2019; “M&A Deal of the Year ($10MM-$25MM)” and “Healthcare and Life Sciences Deal of the Year (Over $100MM-$1B)” in 2018; “M&A Deal of the Year (From $1B-$5B)” and “Corporate/Strategic Deal of the Year (Over $1B)” in 2017; “Corporate & Strategic Deal of the Year (Over $500MM)” in 2016; and “Healthcare/Life Sciences Deal of the Year (Over $250MM)” in 2014.
- Named “Tennessee Firm of the Year” by Benchmark Litigation (2019, 2018, 2017, 2015, 2012).
- Healthcare Practice Group recognized as one of Law360’s “Practice Groups of the Year” in the Health Category (2016).
- 91 attorneys listed in The Best Lawyers in America® 2021; 36 attorneys listed in Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch 2021.
- Ranked in the top 200 of The National Law Journal’s NLJ 350, 2014.
- Ranked 4th largest healthcare practice in nation by Modern Healthcare in 2020.
- Recommended as a United States firm for “M&A – Middle-Market (sub-$500M)” by The Legal 500 United States 2016.
- For three years in a row, Bass, Berry & Sims received a perfect score of 100% on the Corporate Equality Index (CEI) administered by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation, the nation’s premier benchmarking survey and report measuring corporate policies and practices related to LGBTQ workplace equality (2018-2020).
“In this age of consolidation in the legal market and the quest to become larger, we remain committed to being as large as our clients need us to be, committed to being an extraordinary law firm that delivers value and results to our clients.” Todd Rolapp, Managing Partner