Peter Zern

Peter Zern

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Covington & Burling LLP
One CityCenter
850 Tenth Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001-4956
Tel: +1 202 662 5679




  • Georgetown University Law Center, J.D., 1998
    • magna cum laude
    • Order of the Coif
  • Dartmouth College, A.B., 1995

Bar Admissions

  • District of Columbia

Peter Zern’s practice focuses on the sports industry where he represents clients in a wide range of matters including mergers and acquisitions, debt and equity financings and media, sponsorship, naming rights, apparel and other commercial matters. Mr. Zern also has extensive experience in negotiating and structuring mergers and acquisitions and debt and equity financings outside of the sports industry.

Representative Matters

  • Represented Steve Ballmer in connection with his acquisition of the Los Angeles Clippers, and represented Christopher Cohan in connection with the sale of the Golden State Warriors NBA franchise.
  • Represented the RAINE Group in connection with its structuring and creation of the “Reigning Champs” investment platform, and represented Reigning Champs in a range of acquisitions and related matters in the youth athletics space.
  • Represented the National Football League in connection with various league and team financings, including its league-wide term note and revolving credit facility programs and in its “G-3” and “G-4” stadium funding programs.
  • Represented a major New York-based mezzanine finance institution in the structuring and negotiation of a range of mezzanine financing transactions and in the acquisition of the name and likeness rights to a major soccer star, and represented a separate New York-based bank in connection financings to professional NBA franchises and arena companies.

Honors and Rankings

  • Chambers USA, Sports Law (2008-2015)
  • Best Lawyers in America, "Washington Sports Lawyer of the Year" (2014, 2016)
  • Best Lawyers in America (2012-2016)
  • LawDragon 500 Leading Lawyers (2013-14)
  • Law360, Rising Stars (2013)
  • Legal 500 US, Sports (2014-2015) and M&A/Corporate and Commercial (2015)  
  • Washington DC Super Lawyers, Entertainment & Sports (2014)
  • Washington DC Super Lawyers, "Rising Star" (2013)
  • SportsBusiness Journal
    • Forty Under 40 Hall of Fame (2012)
    • Forty Under 40 (2008-2009, 2012)
  • Washington Business Journal, 40 Under 40 (2010)

Pro Bono

  • Representation of an Independent Advisory Committee, chaired by former NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue, in connection with its examination and recommendations regarding the governance of the US Olympic Committee.

Publications and Speeches

  • "Launching a Single Sport Cable Network," SportBusiness International (04/2009), Co-Author
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