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Startups and Venture Capital

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Miller Canfield's attorneys are highly motivated, aggressive, responsive and entrepreneurial – a rare combination in the legal profession. Years of focused practice have developed expertise in all aspects of corporate, securities, venture capital and private equity financing, tax, and intellectual property law relating to technology-based companies and their owners and investors. 

We regularly handle transactions and resolve disputes involving start-up ventures, angel investors, venture capital, private equity funds, and licensing matters of all sizes and degrees of complexity. Our clients find the reach of our global capabilities invaluable in technology transfer and venture financing, complemented by the breadth of our professional relationships and contacts with the major universities, research centers and financing sources for new technology.

As leaders in structuring and negotiating venture capital financings, we have cultivated and maintain strong relationships with leading U.S. institutional, seed and angel venture capital investors and play an active role in bringing the parties together. We are also actively involved in advising venture capital funds on the legal matters surrounding the formation and management of these entities. 

While the attorneys in our group have experience in a wide variety of technologies, we have particular strength and expertise in the following technology sectors:

  • Life Sciences
  • Automotive Technology 
  • Homeland Security and Defense 
  • Software and IT
  • Alternative Energy
  • Film, Music, Digital and Multi-Media

Legal Specialization

Our counsel and representation is efficient and productive because our attorneys have a thorough understanding of the scientific underpinnings of the technologies involved in our clients' businesses. 

This heightened level of knowledge makes us especially effective advocates and counselors for our clients with technology-based issues involving:

  • Licensing and Technology Transfers 
  • Grant Programs 
  • R&D Collaborations and Development 
  • Regulatory (FDA, NHTSA, DHS)
  • Immigration
  • IP Due Diligence
  • IP Patent Prosecutions
  • IP Infringement Disputes
  • IP Portfolio Development
  • Confidentiality/Non-Competition Issues

Miller Canfield's corporate, venture capital and private equity financing, and securities law expertise, working in tandem with our IP technology and licensing sophistication, allow us to structure, assist with financing, negotiate and close the full range of corporate and financing issues faced by company owners and management, investors, venture capital and private equity funds.  Some of these issues include:

  • Tax Planning 
  • Employee Benefits/Incentives 
  • Facility Siting and Permitting 
  • Governmental Incentives/Tax Credits and Abatements 
  • Mergers and Acquisitions
  • Strategic Partnering
  • IPO and Other Exit Strategies
  • Represented venture capital fund in its lead investment of a $3 million purchase of Series B & C Preferred Stock from a drug development company.
  • Represented drug development company in its $2 million seed round financing.
  • Represented pre-clinical testing company in its $1 million angel round financing.
  • Represented venture capital fund in its $1.5 million purchase of Series A Preferred Stock from a medical device company.
  • Represented medicinal chemistry company in its $500,000 seed round financing.
  • Represented medicinal chemistry company in its $5 million joint venture transaction to build laboratory facilities.
  • Represented economic development company in structure and formation of angel investing network.