Technology has associated intellectual property and other intangible assets that have replaced physical assets, as the drivers of economic growth.¬† In this new economy, successful businesses assert and/or license their IP to further their business interests, and they acquire rights to adversely owned technology and IP when its to their advantage.
With shortened product design and life cycles, the increased expense and uncertainty of R&D and the frequent need for non-resident technical skills or access to new markets, a variety of complex strategic arrangements with domestic and foreign entities have also exploded. Technology transfers, joint ventures, joint development or marketing arrangements, investments in and/or licensing with start ups, acquisitions, carve outs and other sophisticated arrangements have become commonplace.
Our IP Transactions Group includes IP Lawyers with considerable transactional experience in essentially all types of deals across a wide range of industries around the world and they¬†team with¬†our high tech lawyers. Our team understands the business and technical drivers of a deal.
Our lawyers know that our clients, not their lawyers, live with the consequences of a deal and we understand that there are two ways to protect a client in a deal - due diligence conducted by a team of lawyers having the required technical expertise and contractual arrangements developed and negotiated by experienced transactional lawyers with corporate deal smarts.
Our transactional lawyers conduct due diligence with the deal drivers in mind and we tap into and direct the expertise of our high tech lawyers to identify the technical and IP issues. Based on our deal experience, we explain these issues and what they mean so that our clients can assess risks and financial impacts. Teaming with our clients we develop contractual agreements that address the risks and impacts.¬†
In a recent biotech acquisition, patents and patent applications were evaluated for strength, scope and coverage. Critical license agreements were studied and renegotiated to maximize their value and, finally, a complicated Share Purchase Agreement and needed ancillary agreements were negotiated. As a result,¬†the client obtained¬†exclusive rights to technologies in a high margin, high growth market.
In addition to the biotech industry, we have worked with large corporate clients and start ups in the defense, water treatment, chemical, communications, computer, software, electronic components, optics, metrology, energy, automotive, medical device, pharmaceutical and food processing industries. We also work with Universities and other research organizations to license their research results¬†or establish companies and start ups.
Our lawyers, several of whom have been in-house counsel themselves,¬†have been lead counsel or worked with corporate lawyers in complex transactions around the world.¬† We back this transactional experience with¬†and our technical expertise to achieve business-oriented positive results for our clients.
The Chair of RatnerPrestia's IP Transactions practice is Stephen D. Harper, Ph.D., former Chief Patent Counsel at Henkel of America (Henkel Corporation), who managed a staff of business oriented¬†patent lawyers and personally handled IP aspects of numerous transactions.