Laura McDaniels advises clients on compensation and benefits issues that arise in both day-to-day operations and during transformative events.

Clients look to Laura to solve challenging compensation issues and help companies effectively incentivize their employees. Working closely with Pillsbury’s corporate and capital markets practice groups, Laura also brings strategic insight to the employee-related aspects of major deals, including mergers and acquisitions, spinoffs, IPOs, deSPACs and joint ventures.

Laura’s advisory practice spans the full spectrum of executive compensation concerns, including equity and cash-based plan design and efficient tax structuring, employment contracts, and corporate governance matters.  Her significant experience in this area has made her a valued resource for US and international clients, including public and private companies, boards of directors and executives. 

Representative Experience

  • Represented Presto Automation (NASDAQ: PRST), one of the largest labor automation technology providers in the hospitality industry, in its go-public business combination with Ventoux CCM Acquisition Corp (NASDAQ: VTAQ), a SPAC.
  • Advised HighPost Capital, a leading private investment firm, on its acquisitions of Centr, a personalized digital health and fitness platform co-founded by Chris Hemsworth, and Inspire Fitness, a leader in fitness equipment.
  • Represented Siemplify, an Israeli cybersecurity and security orchestration, automation and response (SOAR) provider, in its sale to Google LLC.

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  • M&A Transactions
    • Represented Tufin Software Technologies Ltd. (NYSE: TUFN), a pioneer of policy-centric approach to security and IT operations, in its $570 million take-private acquisition by Turn/River Capital.
    • Represented JTC PLC, a financial services firm, in its acquisition of SALI Fund Services, a provider of fund services to the Insurance Dedicated Fund and Separately Managed Account market, with $15.8 billion of assets under management.
    • Represented ExxonMobil Chemical Company in its $156 million acquisition of Materia, Inc., an advanced materials manufacturing company.
    • Represented RigNet (NASDAQ: RNET), a global offshore communications service provider, in its $222 million acquisition by Viasat Inc. (NASDAQ: VSAT).
    • Represented Pelican Energy Partners, an energy services focused private equity fund, in its acquisition of the Surface Pressure Control Flow business unit from Baker Hughes.
    • Represented Bristow Group (NYSE: VTOL), an offshore oil & gas transportation services company, in its $876 million stock-for-stock merger with Era Group (NYSE: ERA).
    • Represented Uber Technologies (NYSE: UBER), in its $3.7 billion joint venture with Yandex Taxi, and its acquisitions of JUMP Bikes and Otto.
    • Represented TaskUs (NASDAQ: TASK), a business process outsourcing company, in its sale of a majority staketo Blackstone Group, a private equity firm, for $250 million.
    • Represented LogRhythm, a security intelligence company, in its sale of a majority stake to Thoma Bravo, a software and technology-focused private equity firm.
    • Represented Allogene Therapeutics (NASDAQ: ALLO), a clinical stage immune-oncology company, in its acquisition of the CAR-T asset portfolio from Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE).
    • Represented Rovi Corporation (NASDAQ: ROVI) in its $1.1 billion acquisition of TiVo (NASDAQ: TIVO).
    • Represented Stratasys, Ltd. (NASDAQ: SSYS), an Israeli-based 3D printer manufacturer, in its acquisitions of Solid Concepts and GrabCAD.
  • Initial Public Offerings and deSPAC Transactions
    • Advised AMCI Acquisition Corp. II (NASDAQ: AMCI), a SPAC, in its business combination with LanzaTech NZ, Inc., a market-leading innovator in carbon capture & transformation.
    • Represented Dream Finders Homes (NASDAQ: DFH), a national home builder, in its $125 million IPO.
    • Advised the management team of Virgin Galactic (NYSE: SPCE) in connection with Virgin Galactic’s go-public merger with Social Capital Hedosophia Holdings Corp., a SPAC.
    • Represented Uber Technologies (NYSE: UBER) in its $8.1 billion IPO.
    • Represented DocuSign (NASDAQ: DOCU), an e-signature and contract management platform company, in its $723 million IPO.
    • Represented TriNet (NYSE: TNET), a professional employer organization, in its $276 million IPO.
    • Represented Atara Biotherapeutics (NASDAQ: ATRA), an immunotherapy company, in its $55 million IPO.
    • Represented Tableau Software (NYSE: DATA), a data visualization software company, in its $250 million IPO.
  • VC Financings
    • Represented HYPR Corp. in its $25 million Series C financing.

Professional Highlights


  • “Furloughs Create Complications for Compensation and Benefits”, Tax Notes, May 21, 2020
  • “Impact of California AB 5 on Payroll Taxes and Benefits”, Employee Relations Law Journal, Spring 2020

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  • Speaking Engagements
    • Speaker, “Executive Compensation Clawback Policies: Employment Considerations for Drafting and Enforcement,” Strafford Webinars, November 2023
    • Speaker, “Equity Compensation Grants in Partnerships and LLCs: Overcoming Challenges and Key Planning Techniques,” Strafford Webinars, March 2023 and February 2022
    • Speaker, “Scaling the Mega Grant Mountain”, Global Equity Organization’s 23rd Annual Conference, April 2022, Chicago, IL
    • Speaker, "Tech GC Deputy GC Virtual Roundtable: Happy Tax Day!", May 2021
    • Speaker, "Executive Compensation Tax Issues in M&A: IRS Rules for Stock Options, Deferred and Equity Comp, Golden Parachutes", Strafford Webinars, July 2020
    • Speaker, "Human Resources and Organizational Development", Austin Technology Council 2020 Scaling Series, March 2020
    • Speaker, TechGC Roundtable – Executive Compensation, December 2019
    • Speaker, "New Section 83(i) Deferral Opportunity: A New Hope or Just Hype?", 18th Annual Oregon Tax Institute, June 2018
    • Speaker, "Preparing for Mergers, Acquisitions and Spin-Offs", Silicon Valley NASPP Meeting, September 2017
    • Speaker, "The IPO’s Return from Hiatus!", Solium Synergy Conference, May 2017
    • Speaker, "A New Year, a New Proxy, a New You!", San Francisco NASPP Meeting, January 2016
    • Speaker, "The IPO Journey & Stock Compensation: Getting There is Only Half the Fun!", Solium Synergy Conference, October 2014


  • J.D., University of California, Berkeley School of Law (Berkeley Law), 2000
    Member, California Law Review; Senior Articles Editor, Berkeley Technology & Law Journal

    M.P.P., Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government, 1997

    B.A., Wellesley College, 1992
    magna cum laude


  • California