From the Beyond IP Law blog:
Startups and Emerging Companies
Who We Are
Lane Powell has a sophisticated and experienced startups and emerging companies practice consisting of some of the highest quality corporate, securities, business and intellectual property lawyers in the Northwest. Our core team quarterbacks engagements and draws from the approximately 200 lawyers in the Firm to bring industry or other expertise to bear when necessary. We have represented startups and emerging companies in virtually every industry including technology, manufacturing, services and retail. We also advise on matters spanning the entire life cycle of a startup or emerging company, beginning with formation and initial capitalization, continuing with capital raising and commercialization, and, hopefully, culminating with a successful exit event such as a sale or public offering.
What Makes Us Different
Other firms can make similar claims regarding their startup and emerging company practices. Here is what we think distinguishes Lane Powell’s:
- Integration with startup-focused Intellectual Property (IP) team. We are closely integrated with the Firm’s broad, deep and highly-skilled IP practice that understands the unique challenges facing startups and emerging companies, and our IP practice calibrates its advice accordingly. Our IP practice includes several attorneys that have experience as in-house counsel for startups and emerging companies, as well as more established companies. Due to that experience, our IP attorneys understand how to help founders identify and protect their innovations cost-effectively and use IP protection to maximize the value of their companies from investors’ perspectives.
- Access to region-wide startup network. We have large offices, and startup and emerging company team members located in both Portland and Seattle, allowing us to provide the benefit of our broad networks in both markets to our clients. These networks include venture capitalists, angel investors and other resources that we can tap or make introductions to when appropriate.
- Passionate commitment to responsiveness and pragmatism. We understand and appreciate the unique pressures facing our startup and emerging company clients and their need to act quickly and efficiently. We know that esoteric, ivory-tower advice is useless to a startup or emerging company, and we pride ourselves on always finding ways that things can be done rather than reasons why they can’t.
- Alternative billing arrangements. We offer a variety of alternative billing arrangements that recognize the cash flow challenges that startups and emerging companies face. These include a long list of services that we provide on a fixed fee basis as well as fee deferral arrangements. Details are available upon request.
What We Can Do for You
We help our clients decide on the best entity and jurisdiction of formation for their business and then assist them in setting it up properly. We provide advice on initial capitalization including ownership splits and agreements between or among the founders. We perform these services for a fixed fee.
Oftentimes, one of the first projects we assist our startup and emerging company clients on is developing a strategy for securing and protecting their intellectual property rights. This could involve a combination of patents, trademarks and copyrights, as well as processes for ensuring trade secret protection. Typically, this includes developing a budget for such work and helping our clients prioritize the work.
Soon after their formation, we often help our clients on the development and execution of a strategy to provide incentive compensation for their employees. Typically, this is in the form of equity compensation, (e.g., stock options, restricted stock, etc.) but can also include a cash bonus program. Our work on this involves the preparation of a plan document as well as advice on the size and terms of grants for various positions within the company. We can do this work on a fixed fee.
We spend a great deal of our time helping our clients develop a strategy for raising capital, which of course is the lifeblood and fuel for most startups and emerging companies. Because of Lane Powell’s constant presence in the capital markets for startups and emerging companies, we are able to advise our clients on current market terms and direct them to specific investors who are focused on and active in their industries. Depending on the situation and circumstances, we are happy to discuss alternative fee arrangements for this work, such as payment deferral and caps.
We view our role with our startup and emerging company clients to be that of a portal for all of their legal and non-legal needs. One of the great benefits to engaging Lane Powell (and one of the ways we distinguish ourselves from sole practitioners and boutiques) is that we are a full-service firm and so have experts to address virtually any issues that arise for our clients. This includes, to name a few, authorities in employment, employee benefits, immigration, tax, real estate, international transactions, intellectual property and all varieties of litigation. In addition, as one of the largest law firms in both Seattle and Portland, we have broad and deep networks consisting of other professionals and resources that we can call on to assist our clients on non-legal issues such as investment bankers, tax and accounting practitioners, public relations specialists, recruiters, tenant representation, human resource specialists, etc.
If all goes accordingly, our representation often culminates in the sale of or initial public offering for our clients’ companies. We have a wealth of experience in advising our clients through these transactions and a deep bench to ensure that we can handle any size deal on any time frame. Some of the exit transactions that we have handled for our startup and emerging company clients are referenced on our Firm’s annual “Representative Transactions” lists — view the 2012, 2013 and 2014 lists. We strongly believe that the chances for a positive outcome (e.g., timing, price and terms) for our startup and emerging company clients is greatly enhanced by early planning for an exit event, therefore we advise our clients in this regard starting on day one.
Startups and Emerging Companies
Startups and Emerging Companies
Representative Clients and Industries
Lane Powell’s Startups and Emerging Companies Practice Group represents a broad range of clients in varying industries including:
- Arnprior Aerospace; Mobile Tool Management; SageTech
- Arena North America; Bluer than Indigo; Homeschool; Horny Toad; Grenade; Nau; Pistil Designs; POW Gloves; SKINS North America; Spooltown; Stewart Brown; Surf Cowboy dba Agave; Wicked Quick
- CityMix; US Cold Patch
- Aditi Staffing; AutoMedic; BizXchange; Columbia Nutritional; GF4 Media; internalDrive; Jadora; Laurel Group; Piraeus Consulting; Sales Readiness Group; Williamsworks
- Arcimoto; Propel Fuels; Renewable Energy Trust Capital; Second Wind
- BooginHead; Chums; iClick; Jagerita Holdings; Nutcase Helmets; OrthoClassic; Rian Handbags; Schilling Cider; Shwood; Skyline Bag Works; Topical Remedy
- Hannahs; SkinSpirit; Sorella; Tixie
- Oh! Shoes; OluKai; Pensole; Proper Course; Skora; SUPRA
- Sage Commerce; WelVU
- CUI Global; iNano Decision Sciences; Practical Steam; Rogue Valley Microdevices; Thermal Hydra Plastics
- Andale Kids; Bob Books
- VergePointe Capital Partners; Vines of Mendoza
- Garden Ridge
- Artoura; Kolidr
- 1iO; Airbiquity; Avidian Technologies; creativeLIVE; Cyntient; Datacastle; Dataprism; FEV Analytics; Flyte Center; Hyperlayer; InDemand Interpreting; iFood Decision Sciences; intentional3D; Knotis; Leviathan Security Group; Project Arke; Radius; Reelworld Productions; SCI Solutions; SourceClear; TenAsys; Telrex; Valant Medical Solutions