Steven M. Kaufman

Steven M. Kaufman

Washington, D.C.

Email [email protected]​

Phone +1 202 637 5736

Fax +1 202 637 5910

Practice groupCorporate & Finance

"His understanding of the hi-tech industry and his ability to understand and solve complex legal problems is best in class."

Chambers USA

A Corporate & Finance partner and Satellite practice co-head, Steve Kaufman uses industry knowledge and versatility to negotiate and close many types of deals globally.

For 18 of his 30 years at the firm, Steve served as outside general counsel for satellite clients, leading strategic joint ventures, "bet-the-company" contracts, financings, and M&A.

What Steve does best: understanding complex business issues and translating them into legal documents. If a client can describe something, Steve can draft it. Working from complicated to simple, he has many times reduced a lengthy contract into a few pages of bullet points, showing the client what it needs and how to obtain it. He has even written a business and financing model for parties in the form of an agreement. Many clients comment that the business guidance from Steve is as valuable as the legal advice.

Steve relies on his familiarity with issues common to satellite and communications companies to give him an edge in negotiations. This experience produces extra benefits when Steve deals with specialized satellite contract terms, targeted warranties, creative covenants, use of insurance to close gaps, license and spectrum issues, and even finance and accounting matters. According to Chambers Steve Kaufman is "a real authority and somebody who will always know the answer."

In advising clients, Steve emphasizes practicality, striving to achieve the client's business objectives for the transaction, whether economic, risk reduction, regulatory/compliance, or transaction speed. This carries over into deal management as well as negotiations, where he willingly takes the lead. Steve and Satellite practice co-head Randy Segal are regulars at the satellite conferences, making connections among clients and even adverse parties. He is listed in Chambers, Super Lawyers, and Legal 500.

Awards and recognitions


M&A, Notable Practioner


Banking, Notable Practioner


Telecom, Broadcast & Satellite (District of Columbia), Rank 4
Chambers USA


Media, Technology, and Telecoms: Telecoms and Broadcast: Transactional
Legal 500 US

2014-2017, 2019

Communications, Aviation, and Aerospace, Business/Corporate
Washington, D.C. Super Lawyers


Media, Technology, and Telecoms: Technology: Transactions
Legal 500 US

Education and admissions


J.D., Harvard Law School, cum laude, 1984

B.A., Yale University, summa cum laude, 1981

Bar admissions and qualifications

District of Columbia



Representative experience

Represented and advised manufacturer/JV partner/investor in many facets of cutting-edge OneWeb satellite program.

Negotiate satellite contracts for a major manufacturer with its U.S. customers.

Represented Asian customer in satellite procurement, from RFP through negotiated contract.

Represented Middle Eastern satellite operator in satellite, launch and ground system procurements.

Serving as commercial and M&A counsel for national telecom network for railroad industry to implement train safety.

Served as lead outside counsel for a satellite radio company in 15 equity and debt financings and commercial projects over nine years.

Satellite and commercial counsel to inflight internet company.

Represented satellite maritime company in several M&A disposition transactions.

Lease acquisition of capacity for full satellite for African customer.

Served as merger and acquisitions counsel for two major satellite companies over a 10-year period.

Lease acquisition of satellite capacity for South American customer.

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