Brett Willis represents clients in a wide range of corporate and partnership tax matters, including, domestic and international mergers and acquisitions, reorganizations, restructurings, private equity investments, joint ventures, U.S. and non-U.S. financial instruments, real estate investments trusts (REITs), and foreign investments in the United States including under the Foreign Investment Real Property Tax Act. 

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Brett has represented various prominent private equity funds, asset managers and public and private REITs. He has significant experience in federal income tax matters relating to domestic and cross-border corporate and financial transactions, including M&A transactions, restructurings, financial instruments and joint ventures. In addition, Brett has significant experience with all tax matters relating to fund formation and investments in funds. His representations have been profiled in numerous publications.

Prior to joining Pillsbury, Brett was a senior vice president at Oaktree Capital Management, LP and a partner at Kirkland & Ellis LLP.

Representative Experience

  • Represented CalPERS in the largest secondary-sale transaction ever, which was a divestiture of $6 billion in private equity stakes from the fund’s $50 billion private equity portfolio.
  • Represented MSUITE in acquisition by Stanley Black & Decker.
  • Represented Kirei in its acquisition by Carnegie Fabrics.

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  • Represented Sentynl in an acquisition of assets, including Nulibry (Fosdenopterin), an FDA-approved injection used to reduce the risk of mortality in patients with an ultra-rare, life-threatening pediatric genetic disorder.
  • Represented Eagle Four Partners in the purchase of the former Fashion Island Hotel in Orange County, California. The hotel will rebrand as the Pendry Newport Beach, part of the Montage International chain.


  • LL.M. (in Taxation), New York Law School

    J.D., University of Utah College of Law

    M.Acc., Brigham Young University

    B.S., Brigham Young University


  • California