Goodwin Partner John Horton, from Silicon Valley, practices in the Business Law Department.

John Wayne Horton

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John Wayne Horton
Silicon Valley
+1 650 752 3157

John Horton is a partner in the firm's Business Law department and a member of its Technology & Life Sciences practice groups. John specializes in private company lifecycle legal representation and venture capital law, including emerging growth business structuring, investment transactions, corporate governance and securities law, and late-stage pathway to exit. He joined Goodwin in 2018.


In addition to representing large corporations on a full range of business and corporate transactional matters, John works with entrepreneurs and venture capitalists throughout the life cycles of businesses and portfolio investments. Based in Silicon Valley, John understands the everyday needs of entrepreneurs and the start-up community. Because many emerging companies have limited in-house legal capacity, he has embraced the role of outside general counsel by working alongside executive teams to manage risk, oversee corporate governance and help identify and capitalize on commercial opportunities.

John began his legal career prior to law school, as a corporate paralegal for the Mergers and Acquisitions practice group at Cooley LLP in Palo Alto, California, handling high-profile technology acquisition transactions. Prior to joining Goodwin, John was a senior associate in the Silicon Valley office of Hogan Lovells US LLP.


John’s representative clients include:

  • Ajaib
  • Balderton
  • Decent
  • DeepScribe
  • Faros AI
  • Fivetran
  • Frameplay
  • G.O.A.T. Fuel
  • Macrometa
  • Norwest Venture Partners
  • Novome Biotechnologies
  • Pepper
  • Rad AI
  • Seam Labs
  • SkySelect
  • Upside (Upside Services)
  • WorkBoard

Representative Matters

  • Represented Forge Global Holdings (NYSE: FRGE) from early stage through SPAC transaction and public listing
  • Represented Haven Money in its sale to Credit Karma
  • Represented an Oregon-based client in a complex transaction involving the sale of an investment advisor education business to a California-based private equity firm
  • Represented a New York-based search fund in the acquisition of a New Jersey-based business in the automotive marketing industry
  • Represented a search fund in the sale of a SaaS business to a New York-based private equity firm
  • Represented Synopsys, Inc., in its acquisition of cybersecurity company, Black Duck Software, Inc. for more than US $550 million*
  • Represented Cisco Systems, Inc., in its acquisition of the data analytics product platform of Saggezza Inc.*
  • Represented international-based public company, Foxconn, in its multi-jurisdictional, cross-border, acquisition of Microsoft’s feature phone business for US$350 million*

* Denotes experience prior to joining Goodwin

  • Seasoned representation of startup companies in corporate and securities matters, from inception through liquidity
  • Represents corporate clients in venture capital fundraising strategy and financing transactions, as well as restructuring and M&A matters
  • Well versed in investor side venture capital representation, including routine representation of Norwest Venture Partners
  • Historical representation of Founders Fund, Sky Ventures, and 3M Company (3M Ventures)*

* Denotes experience prior to joining Goodwin

Professional Activities

During law school, John served as the Business Editor of the Santa Clara Computer & High Technology Law Journal, and as President of the Santa Clara University Law & Business Club.




Santa Clara University School of Law

(High Tech Law Certificate, Corporate Law with Honors)

BASMathematics and Music (Music, Science & Technology)2002

Stanford University



  • California

Recognition & Awards

John has been recognized by Best Lawyers® as part of the 2023 Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America, for his work in Technology Law.