Mr. Underwood concentrates his practice around a broad spectrum of private and public sector entities in corporate and commercial matters.
He has counseled a number of medium sized manufacturing and service businesses and their boards of directors regarding general contract, commercial finance and corporate planning issues. Through these relationships, Mr. Underwood has gained extensive experience in evaluating, planning and documenting vendor/customer transactions, OEM/distributor arrangements, executive compensation plans, asset acquisition and business expansion through purchase, sale and joint ventures.
For over 30 years, Mr. Underwood has represented SigmaTron International, Inc., an electronic manufacturing service company whose stock is traded through the Nasdaq, which has grown from a one-plant operation with annual sales of less than $10 million to a multi-national company with facilities in Mexico, China, Vietnam and Taiwan, in addition to its five U.S. locations, with annual sales in excess of $200 million. For many years, he represented The Martin-Brower Company, a leading distributor to fast food and casual dining restaurants, including McDonald's, Arby's, Chili's, Red Lobster, Olive Garden, TGI Fridays and others with over 50 distribution centers throughout the U.S. and Canada, and an international division servicing McDonald's Restaurants in the Caribbean as well as South and Central America. He continues to represent the worldwide leader in manufacturing and sales of film printing, cleaning and inspection equipment to the motion picture industry and disc inspection and repair equipment. He has recently guided an affiliation of printing distributors in the start-up of a significant national network to offer printing services throughout the country to large consumers. In each of these situations, Mr. Underwood has made it a priority to earn the trust and confidence of the executive officers in charge of those operations. During his diverse corporate practice, Mr. Underwood has represented companies in the sale and acquisition of complete businesses and business units and the establishment and operation of joint venture entities.
Mr. Underwood received a B.A. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1966, a J. D. from the University of Chicago Law School in 1969 and an LL.M. from the London School of Economic in 1971. He is a member of the American Bar Association (Business Law Committee), the Illinois State Bar Association and the Chicago Bar Association. Mr. Underwood has been active in the Chicago Bar Association's Commercial Law Committee and assisted in the drafting of Article 2A of the Illinois Uniform Commercial Code governing equipment leasing. He is licensed in the State of Illinois.
Mr. Underwood is the managing member of the Chicago office and has a Martindale rating of AV. In recent years he has been selected as a Illinois Super Lawyer.