Duke University School of Law, J.D., 1994

St. John's University, B.A., 1986, Magna Cum Laude

Bar & Court Admissions

  • Minnesota
  • Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court Western District of Wisconsin
Photo of Charles W. Johnson
Charles W. Johnson
Director; Secretary; Shareholder
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Chuck Johnson is a member of the firm's board of directors and is co-chair of the firm’s Business Law section, which consists of more than 30 attorneys. Chuck also leads the firm's M&A practice. He represents public and privately held companies practicing principally in the areas of:

  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Commercial contracts
  • International transactions
  • Corporate restructuring
  • Formation and business planning
  • Technology and software licensing
  • Shareholder buy-sell agreements
  • Business and corporate transactions
  • Private equity and venture capital financing
  • Inter-shareholder issues
  • Corporate and business counseling

Chuck’s clients represent a cross section of industries, including manufacturing, food and beverage production, insurance, commercial real estate services, telecommunications, vending services, medical devices, banking and financial services, and software development and licensing.

Mergers and Acquisitions
Chuck has represented public and private companies in stock and asset acquisitions with purchase prices ranging from less than one million up to several billions of dollars. These transactions have included tax-free reorganizations, mergers of public companies, going private transactions, joint ventures, payment structures using earn-outs, mezzanine debt financing and purchases through Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs).

International Experience
Chuck has extensive international legal experience. He has represented public and privately held companies in acquisitions throughout the world and has negotiated commercial contracts on behalf of his clients with vendors and customers around the globe. Chuck frequently works with foreign counsel to seamlessly assist clients in navigating foreign tax and antitrust issues, as well as Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) compliance and foreign patent and trademark protection.

Technology and Software Development and Licensing
Chuck counsels several companies that develop, distribute and license technology products and software. He also frequently represents users of technology in negotiating license agreements, service agreements, user agreements, development agreements and website agreements.

Prior to joining Briggs, Chuck was an attorney with a Wisconsin law firm focusing his practice in business and corporate transactions. He also served as the corporate accountant for Canadian Pacific Railway and as an auditor with KPMG.

Honors & Awards

  • Rising Star, Minnesota Super Lawyers
  • Recognized in the Big Deals section of American Lawyer for his role in the PepsiCo/PepsiAmericas merger.


 Mergers and Acquisitions

  • representing buyer in $70 million acquisition of Polaroid;
  • representing buyer in acquisition of company holding the post-bankruptcy assets of a national consumer electronics company;
  • representing majority owner in sale of lumber company with national operations;
  • representing PepsiAmericas, Inc. in its merger with PepsiCo, Inc., a transaction involving the acquisition of all the outstanding shares of PepsiAmericas, Inc. and Pepsi Bottling Group. The transaction valued at $7.8 billion, created one of the world’s largest food and beverage companies;
  • representing seller in sale of a Wisconsin-based manufacturer of ingredients for the dairy, nutritional and food processing industry to Agropur, Inc, a Canadian cooperative and dairy industry leader with $3.4 billion in annual sales;
  • representing a regional telecommunications company in the sale of its cell towers and related assets to SBA Communications Corporation, a publicly traded telecommunications company;
  • representing a Fortune 500 client in a joint venture to form Central America’s largest bottling company;
  • representing a national provider of employee payroll and benefit services in its sale to Arthur  J. Gallagher & Co., a NYSE listed company that is a global provider of employee benefit and risk management services;
  • representing PepsiAmericas, Inc. in its $750 million acquisition of Sandora, LLC, a Ukrainian beverage and snack company;
  • representing a privately owned medical device company in $52 million sale to NYSE listed medical device company;
  • representing a buyer in the acquisition of a publicly traded company that provides metallurgical services and in the subsequent going private transaction concerning the company;
  • representing an international provider of air vending services in a series of strategic add-on acquisitions;
  • representing a privately owned automotive and petroleum products company in $30 million sale of its assets;
  • representing a national agricultural cooperative in its $400 million purchase of interests in a gas refinery in Kansas;
  • representing a California-based beverage company in its sale to MillerCoors.

 International Matters

  • acquisition of a Netherlands-based manufacturer of air vending equipment;
  • $750 million acquisition by PepsiAmericas of Sandora, LLC, at the time the largest M&A transaction in the history of Ukraine;
  • joint venture involving operations in Jamaica, Trinidad, Puerto Rico, Barbados, Mexico and Guatemala to form one of the largest privately controlled companies in Central America;
  • formation of companies in Spain, Portugal, France and Belgium as strategic add-ons to international provider of air vending services;
  • formation of joint venture in Bulgaria to acquire and operate Agrima Beverages;
  • representation of a Netherlands dairy company in acquisition of cheese and whey producer;
  • $52 million acquisition of a beverage and snack business in Romania;
  • acquisition of food and beverage company in Trinidad and Tobago for $13 million;
  • $28 million acquisition of Puerto Rican and Jamaican bottling companies.

Professional Affiliations

American Bar Association, Member

Minnesota Bar Association, Member

Wisconsin Bar Association, Member

Minnesota Children's Museum, Member, Board of Directors, 2003-2006

Cystic Fibrosis Foundation - Minnesota/Dakotas Chapter

  • Board member
  • Chairman of the Board, 2012-2014
  • Co-chair Twin Cities' Great Strides fundraising event

LaCrosse County Young Lawyers Association, Past Treasurer