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5/4/16 – Life Sciences Series Panel 1: Business and IP Strategy 04/21/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Events, Life Sciences, MBBP news, Intellectual Property.
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reg now buttonJoin us at MBBP‘s Waltham office on Wednesday, May 4th at 7:00am for a look at Building Your Product & Patent Strategy from the Ground Floor. This is the first of four events in the 2016 Life Science Panel Series.

This lively panel of experts will discuss how to structure a well-crafted intellectual property portfolio. They have all built and analyzed multiple portfolios and will share their experiences on the do’s and don’ts in both organically growing an IP portfolio and in-licensing key properties.

Panelists include:

  • William Edelman Social Entrepreneur and C-Level Executive, Paragonix Technologies, NewVert, VitaThreads, Flexicath, First Light Biosciences
  • Molly Hoult Vice President, Fletcher Spaght Ventures
  • Michael McDonald, Ph.D. Director of Intellectual Property, bluebird bio

Seating is limited. Register today!

Josh French Panelist for TechSandbox’s unPanel Event 04/20/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Attorney News, Corporate, Events, Telecommunications & Networking.
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Josh FrenchOn May 5th, Attorney Josh French will be a panelist at “Networking with a Twist: The Expert’s unPanel” presented by TechSandBox. On this panel will be ten experts in all different aspects of starting a business. Josh French will be representing the legal viewpoint.

The unPanel does not have a typical panel program outline and instead is an opportunity for attendees to ask the questions and steer the conversation. The event targets young companies, startup founders, and people considering starting a business. Topics could include contracts, banking, product prototyping, angel investors, and finding low cost resources.

For more information, visit the TechSandBox calendar.

 

 

PEVC Committee Chair to attend ABA Business Law Section Conference 04/07/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Attorney News, MBBP news, Venture Capital & Private Equity.
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M0846570This week Attorney Jon Gworek, chair of the ABA Private Equity and Venture Capital Committee, is off to Montreal for the 2016 Business Law Section Spring Meeting. The Business Law Section of the American Bar Association includes over fifty committees with the PEVC being the fifth largest. Throughout this conference, the PEVC Committee has a full and exciting agenda.

To learn more visit our VC blog.

MBBP Clients Named Finalists in SBANE New England Innovation Awards 04/06/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Clean Tech, Client News, Events, Industries, Nonprofit, Publishing & Media, Telecommunications & Networking.
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SBANE Logo (M0164564xB1386)The Smaller Business Association of New England announced this year’s Innovation Awards Finalists. MBBP would like to congratulate clients WatchRx and The Curadel Companies on advancing to the final round of this prestigious competition. We also have two additional clients, Sparkx Hockey and Applied BioMath, that reached the Semifinal round.  Since 1986, the Innovation Awards recognizes companies that have transformed their innovative ideas into a product that delivers proven value to customer. Former winners have come from a variety of fields including technology, manufacturing, service, non-profit, and retail/distribution. The Finalists will present to judges on April 7th, 2016 and will be honored at The New England Innovation Awards Gala on May 12th at The Westin Hotel in Waltham, MA.

To learn more, visit the SBANE Innovation Awards webpage.

 

Sequenom Petitions Supreme Court to Clarify Scope of Mayo in Sequenom v. Ariosa 04/05/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Intellectual Property, Legal Developments, Life Sciences, Medical Devices.
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M0846516Late last month, Sequenom, Inc. filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari requesting the United States Supreme Court to clarify the scope of its Mayo Collaborative Services v. Prometheus Laboratories, Inc., 132 S. Ct. 1289 (2012) decision, as applied to Sequenom’s claimed inventions.  The Mayo decision, which held that a method correlating a drug dosage regimen and levels of the drug in the blood was an unpatentable law of nature, has had the profound effect of narrowing the scope of patent-eligible subject matter in the United States and has cast doubt on the validity and enforceability of previously-issued United States patents.

Sequenom’s discovery related to the discovery of cell-free fetal DNA circulating in maternal plasma, which was used to invent a test for detecting fetal genetic conditions in early pregnancy, and thereby avoid subjecting the mother to dangerous, invasive techniques such as amniocentesis.  The Federal Circuit agreed that Sequenom’s invention combined and utilized man-made tools of biotechnology in a new way that revolutionized prenatal care; however, in view of Mayo, such inventions were deemed patent-ineligible as a matter of law, since their new combination involved only a “natural phenomenon” and techniques that were “routine” or “conventional” on their own.

Despite the Federal Circuit’s reluctant holding that Sequenom’s claimed inventions were not patent-ineligible, multiple judges wrote separately to explain that while this result was probably not intended by Mayo, that decision controlled and only the Supreme Court could clarify Mayo’s reach to prevent a “crisis of patent law and medical innovation.”  Sequenom’s petition now asks the Supreme Court to clarify the scope of its Mayo decision in view of Sequenom’s claimed inventions, and to determine whether a novel method is patent-eligible where: (1) a researcher is the first to discover a natural phenomenon; (2) that unique knowledge motivates him to apply a new combination of known techniques to that discovery; and (3) he thereby achieves a previously impossible result without preempting other uses of the discovery.

If the Supreme Court grants certiorari it will have a compelling set of facts before it to clarify the scope of Mayo, and we patiently await its decision, which will have high stakes for the life sciences community.

For more information, contact Patent Attorney Stan Chalvire.

MBBP Attorney Joe Martinez to Speak About The Art of Raising Capital 03/21/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Corporate, Events, Venture Capital & Private Equity.
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MITEF-Full-Color-e1438717228333Thursday, March 24, MBBP attorney Joe Martinez will be speaking at a session of the MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge’s Start Smart program.  The discussion will be about the Art of Raising Capital and Joe will be joined by Christopher Mirabile, Managing Director of Launchpad Venture Group and Chair of the Angel Capital Association board.

Start Smart is a hands-on workshop for new and seasoned entrepreneurs alike who are serious about launching a new business venture. The Start Smart program provides entrepreneurs with the information and contacts necessary to help start a new start-up venture in as successful a way as possible.

More information about the program and the full list of speakers can be found here or by contacting Joe.

Fenway Summer Ventures Leads Financing in StreetShares 03/16/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Client News, Deal News, Financial Services.
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fenwaysummer logoCongratulations to our client Fenway Summer Ventures for leading a Series A financing in StreetShares. Endeavor Equity Holding and Pivot Investments also participated in the initial $4.5 million Series A closing. Led by co-founders Mark Rockefeller and Mickey Konson, StreetShares brings together business owners in search of funding and investors looking for both financial and social returns. The online lender offers loans and lines of credit of $2,000 to $100,000 to small businesses, many of which are run by veterans.

MBBP attorneys Jon Gworek and Matt Loecker handled the transaction on behalf of Fenway Summer Ventures. To learn more, please click here.

3/22/16 – On Your Mark. Get Set. GROW! 03/07/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Events, Games & Interactive Entertainment.
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Join us in Waltham, MA on Tuesday, March 22 for a look at The Business Arc of a Sports Technology Startup.

MBBP has teamed up with Boston Seed Capital to co-host a lively discussion on the unique experience of emerging companies in Boston’s sports technology industry. Representatives from local sports tech startups Drivn and Fitivity will share a candid look at their company’s journey.

Topics will include:

  • Fundraising in Boston
  • Getting to Scale
  • Scale vs. Monetization
  • Pitfalls

Presentations will be followed by an interactive Q&A session.

Seating is limited. Register today!

‘The Flame in the Flood’ released for PC, Mac and Xbox One 03/04/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Client News, Games & Interactive Entertainment.
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molassessMBBP client, Boston-based The Molasses Flood has released their first game for PC, Mac and Xbox One. From the Art Director of BioShock and a team of veterans of the BioShock, Halo, Guitar Hero and Rock Band series comes The Flame in the Flood.

Gamers navigate a journey through the backwaters of a forgotten post-societal America, evading predators along the way. Characters travel ‘by foot and by raft down a procedurally-generated river.’ Challenges include scrounging for resources, crafting tools and most importantly, staying ahead of the coming rains. This is no ‘Oregon Trail.’ (Game Industry News agrees. Check out their review.)

Learn more about BioShock’s Forrest Dowling’s first foray into indie games as Founder of The Molasses Flood in this engadget interview.

Congrats, Molasses Flood!

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Survey Says: Top NINE Intellectual Property Developments of 2015 03/04/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Computer Software & Hardware, Intellectual Property, Licensing & Strategic Alliances, Life Sciences, Privacy and Data Security, Publishing & Media.
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happy-birthdayBy: Callie L. Pioli

2015 was another busy year in terms of intellectual property law, but luckily, MBBP has been carefully monitoring all of the important developments. There were many contenders for spots in our list, but only a select few could make the cut.

Get a recap on 2015 (and prepare for success in 2016) by reading our list.

We cover:

  1. Happy Birthday to All! – Marya v. Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.
  2. Google Books (Authors Guild v. Google, Inc.)
  3. Disparagement versus Free Speech: In re Tam
  4. Issue Preclusion & The TTAB: B&B Hardware, Inc. v. Hargis Indus., Inc.
  5. Patient Infringement Liability: Akamai Techs., Inc. v. Limelight Networks, Inc.
  6. Biosimilarity: Amgen v. Sandoz
  7. ­Patentability of Natural Phenomena: Ariosa Diagnostics, Inc. v. Sequenom, Inc.
  8. Computer Fraud & Abuse Act
  9. Safe Harbor Down, EU-US Privacy Shield Up

 

Is Software Patentable? 03/03/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Computer Software & Hardware, Intellectual Property, Legal Developments.
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M0846496By: Brian J. Assessor

On June 19, 2014, the Supreme Court’s decision in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank International sent shockwaves through many areas of patent law and, as a result of that decision, patent attorneys, inventors, and companies working in the computer and software space are wondering “is software patentable?” and, if so, “what type of software is patentable?”. The impact of this case should be a primary consideration for anyone filing a patent application related to software, even those who were not previously aware of the Alice Corp. decision.

Read the full article.

Learn more about our Patent Team.

“Watch” it here: MBBP Client WatchRx wins Boston Scientific Connected Patient Challenge! 02/26/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Client News, Life Sciences, Medical Devices.
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MBBP client WatchRx, is an early stage startup founded while trying to help aging parents manage their medications and health conditions remotely. Current solutions available in the market, like mobile apps and pill caps/bottles, didn’t fit the need and only added to the confusion. WatchRx provides a a simple dedicated reminder solution. From voice reminders to GPS tracking this device addresses so many needs. The watch can even send alerts to family and caregivers.

The Boston Scientific Connected Patient Challenge is an open competition focused on ideas and early-stage companies that improve patient care and/or drive down the cost of health care through the use of Remote Patient Monitoring using wearable, implantable or ubiquitous sensors. The top five ideas based on the online crowd voting and online judge scores were honored at a live event on February 25, 2016, where they presented their ideas to the Challenge Sponsors and fellow participants.  Arun Buduri, Founder and Chief Product Officer, presented for WatchRx and walked away the winner! Watch the pitch (skip to 56:45) and award (skip to 1:53:00) here.

WatchRx Video

This isn’t the only thing the Greater Boston-based company is celebrating. Just yesterday WatchRx Founder and CEO Jayanthi Narasimhan was awarded 2016 Women to Watch in Science & Technology by the Boston Business Journal.

Congrats to WatchRx. If you aren’t a client to “watch” we don’t know who is!

 

Clearing Away Cloud Confusion; MBBP Team to Illuminate Intricacies of Buying and Selling Cloud Services 02/01/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Computer Software & Hardware, Corporate, Events, Intellectual Property, Licensing & Strategic Alliances, Privacy and Data Security, Telecommunications & Networking.
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Lawyers for technology companies are increasingly asked to assess the risks of client companies shifting from standard sales and licenses to a cloud model, and lawyers for every company need to assess the pros and cons of receiving core technology as a service over the internet. On Wednesday February 3rd, at a NECCA (New England Corporate Counsel Association, Inc.) seminar  held at the Westin Waltham from 10:00 to noon, MBBP attorneys Howard Zaharoff, John Hession, Mark Tarallo and Faith Kasparian will address the complexities of cloud computing and offer guidance to in-house counsel and other professionals advising their clients on these critical issues.

Among the topics to be covered are understanding the legally relevant features of cloud computing, identifying the key contract issues, recognizing the terms a standard vendor contract should contain, and discovering the implications of  recent developments in data privacy, particularly in the EU, for companies that are purchasing or selling cloud services.

To explore these and many other aspects of this complex and rapidly -evolving subject, reserve your space for this important and edifying NECCA seminar. Lunch will be served at 12:30 p.m.

VC Event: Join Us For A Review of 2015 and A Look Forward to 2016 01/15/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Events, Venture Capital & Private Equity.
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On Thursday, February 4th MBBP will be hosting a distinguished panel of angel investors and entrepreneurs.  The topic of this discussion will be “Series A Venture Capital Financing: A Review of 2015 and A Look Forward to 2016”.

The panel will include:

Panelists:
Vin Fabiani, Partner, HLM Venture Partners  
David Jegen, Partner, F-Prime Capital
Dan Powdermaker, Angel Investor, Launchpad Venture Group

Moderated by:
Scott Bleier, Member, Morse, Barnes-Brown & Pendleton, PC

To learn more and to register read our VC blog.

The Contours of Copyright #3: Too Short for Copyright? 01/04/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Attorney News, Intellectual Property, Licensing & Strategic Alliances, New Resources, Publishing & Media.
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M0846618It is axiomatic that copyrights do not protect words or short phrases. But how short is too short for copyright? 10 words? 5 words? 3 words? Consider Henny Youngman’s classic 4-word joke, “Take my wife … please.” Is that a copyrightable jocular expression, or an uncopyrightable short phrase (or, for you copyright pros, a merged idea)? The answer is important, not only to comedians, but also to epigrammatists, songwriters, poets … and anyone who wishes to include, in a work they are creating, word sequences they’ve seen used by another.

A recent case, William L. Roberts v. Stefan Kendal Gordy (U.S D.C., S.D. Florida 2015), provides helpful guidance, though not a definitive answer.

Discussion: The plaintiffs, Roberts et al., owned the musical composition Hustlin’, whose chorus consists of the repeated refrain “everyday I’m hustling.” The defendants, Gordy et al., had a hit song, Party Rock Anthem, which included the phrase “everyday I’m shuffling.” When the defendants began marketing their “shuffling” phrase on T-shirts and other merchandise, the plaintiffs sued, arguing that their copyright in the song included a copyright in the “hustlin’” refrain, and therefore they could prevent anyone from copying that refrain, whether in a similar song or standing alone on a garment.

The defendants disagreed, and the court sided with them. Yes, said the court, the plaintiff’s song was entitled to copyright protection. However, “copyright protection does not automatically extend to every component of a copyrighted work.” Rather, because “originality” is the sine qua non of copyright, and short phrases are common and unoriginal, the copyright in a work does not extend to individual short phrases (or, of course, single words) in the work. This doesn’t mean, the court explained, that the presence of “ordinary” phrases deprives a work of copyright protection; but it also doesn’t mean that the copyright umbrella shelters every word or phrase contained in a copyrighted work.

Or, as the court puts it: “The question presented … is not whether the lyrics of Hustlin’, as arranged in their entirety, are subject to copyright protection. The question is whether the use of a three-word phrase appearing in the musical composition, divorced from the accompanying music, modified, and subsequently printed on merchandise, constitutes an infringement of the musical composition Hustlin’. The answer, quite simply, is that it does not.”

To add insult to injury, the court also notes that the terms “hustling” and “hustlin’” were used in many earlier songs, and that the plaintiffs never asserted that the phrase “everyday I’m hustlin’” originated with them – which in itself could have killed their copyright claim (to be copyrightable, a work needn’t be novel, as in the patent sense of never before appearing anywhere, but does need to be original, in the copyright sense of having composed it oneself without copying from another). Finally, says the court, there is no substantial similarity between the original musical composition, containing the (uncopyrightable) phrase “everyday I’m hustlin’,” and the defendant’s T-shirts, containing the (uncopyrightable) phrase “everyday I’m shuffling.”  In short, none of the plaintiff’s original expression was infringed by the defendant’s apparel.

An Interlude for Copyright Aficionados: There was nothing earthshaking about this decision, though it is interesting to read the court’s sampling of many short phrases that failed to win copyright protection, including: “so high” (2 words), “get it poppin’” (3 words), “fire in the hole” (4 words – uh-oh, Henny), “most personal sort of deodorant” (5 words), and “You Got the Right One, Uh-Huh” (5 words, plus an “Uh-Huh”). So, one might conclude, a half dozen words or more are probably the minimum required for copyrightability.

Perhaps the reason this court – and no court I’m aware of – has stated a bottom line number below which copyright cannot apply is that no one can be absolutely certain that a creative author couldn’t be original in even a handful of words. Let’s cheat, make up a word, and stick it in a short phrase: “She’s my joyzilla mama.” Four words – really 3 plus a mashup – which have never appeared before (a Google search more or less confirmed this).  Can I use copyright law to prevent another person from using my original phrase in a song or on a T-shirt?

My answer is a definite “maybe.” The epigrammatist Ashley Brilliant has successfully registered – and once successfully asserted – copyrights in his epigrams, many of which are quite short (such as, “When all else fails … Eat” = 5 words). Poets and songwriters often feel that their short but creative phrasings are worthy of protection. So maybe we can’t state an absolute bottom line because we can’t guaranty that a brilliant writer or composer won’t dash our assumptions.

Conclusion. Still, it’s hard to imagine anyone successfully claiming copyright in any 2- or even 3-word (real words, not coined) phrase – if for no other reason than given the relatively small number of meaningful 2- and 3-word phrases, and the exhaustive output of English speakers, each of those short phrases would have already appeared so frequently that no one using such a phrase could convincingly assert it originated with them, or that they should have the right to keep anyone else from using it.

So, unlike Roger Bannister running a mile under 4 minutes, the possibility of someone writing a copyrightable phrase of under 4 words (probably 5, possibly 6) should stand the test of time.

For more information on this topic, please contact Howard Zaharoff.

Q3 Venture Capital Data Published – Get it here! 12/31/2015

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Corporate, Legal Developments, MBBP news, Venture Capital & Private Equity.
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MBBP’s Q4 VC Spotlight Newsletter is fresh off the press. This quarter we provide an analysis of data for 23 companies that closed their first institutional round of financing in the third quarter of 2015.

Here’s one of several charts available in our publication. Visit our VCs and Startups blog to learn more.

2015dealtermsQ3

Further data analysis, as well as featured articles, can be found in this quarter’s VC Spotlight Newsletter.

MBBP’s Life Sciences Vector, Fall 2015 11/30/2015

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Client News, Life Sciences, MBBP news, New Resources.
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extU.S. INTRODUCTION TO THE HAGUE SYSTEM

For many years, non-U.S. parties have taken advantage of the Hague System to register their design patents, an important part of strengthening and differentiating your product and brand. On May 13, 2015, the Hague Agreement Implementation of the Patent Law Treaties Implementation Act of 2012 (PLT) went into effect in the U.S. As a result, the U.S. became a member of the Hague System, an international system of registration for design patents (also referred to as “industrial designs” internationally). Now, U.S. applicants wishing to register a design patent in the U.S. and abroad may submit a single application and pay a single fee to register such design patent in all or some of the 63 other Contracting Parties that participate in the Hague Agreement.

Click here to learn more.

4,500 COMPANIES REELING AS EU’S HIGHEST COURT INVALIDATES SAFE HARBOR

On October 6, the Court of Justice of the European Union (“CJEU”) issued a binding judgment invalidating the European Commission Decision (Commission Decision 2000/520, the “Safe Harbor Decision”) that authorized the EU-U.S. Safe Harbor arrangement. For the past fifteen years, this arrangement has been relied upon by many businesses to transfer personal data from the European Union to the United States in compliance with the EU Data Protection Directive (Commission Decision 95/46, the “Directive”). As a result of the CJEU’s judgment, self-certification under the Safe Harbor framework is no longer sufficient to comply with the Directive.

Read more on Page 5.

CONTROLLING THE DEBATE: ANTICIPATORY SELF-DILIGENCE IN BIOTECH BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

By: Jonathan P. Gertler, Back Bay Life Science Advisors

Business development is the lifeblood of the biotech industry. This article focuses on internal decision making regarding portfolio prioritization, and external anticipatory diligence to maintain optimal control over negotiation dynamics (i.e. “controlling the debate”).

Read more on Page 3.

MBBP ADDS TWO ASSOCIATES

Registered Patent Attorney Erin E. Bryan handles a broad range of intellectual property issues in a number of technical areas. She currently works with a variety of clients, including universities, research organizations and start-ups in the chemical, pharmaceutical and biotechnology areas. She is also proficient in patent prosecution and provides assistance with various phases of IP litigation and counseling.

Corporate Attorney Erik S. Thompson provides services to a range of clients, including emerging businesses and private investment funds, and advises them on mergers and acquisitions, issuances of ISOs and equity options, and regulatory compliance. He also serves as outside counsel to numerous companies, attending Board meetings and advising them on corporate actions.

MBBP ATTORNEYS PRESENT “CONSTRUCTING A SOLID PROVISIONAL PATENT”

In October, Registered Patent Attorneys Sean D. Detweiler and Dr. Stanley F. Chalvire spoke at a program hosted by TechSandBox for its Life Sciences SIG. Joining Sean and Stan were two Life Science CEOs. The panel provided attendees with guidance on how to do a provisional patent, on your own, or on a low budget.

RECENT FINANCINGS IN HEALTHCARE / LIFE SCIENCES

  • NED Biosystems closed a $1.5 million Series B Preferred financing with First Round Capital and angel investors. NED Biosystems provides a adjunct therapy of natural supplements designed to enhance chemotherapy with less toxic side effects.
  • Criscot Inc. closed an $800,000 extension of its Series A-2 Preferred Stock financing. Criscot provides a novel, proprietary applicator for delivery of drug compounds, resulting in more exact dosage without toxicity effects.
  • First Light Biosciences Inc. closed a $3.0 million Series B Preferred Stock financing. First Light Biosciences provides a patented instrument for early and swift detection of pathogens during the hospital admissions process, reducing the risk of hospital-acquired infections.

SELVITA ESTABLISHES FIRST U.S. OPERATIONS  IN GREATER BOSTON AREA

MBBP client, Selvita, recently announced an expansion into the Boston-area biotechnology and pharmaceutical market, as they open a fully-owned US subsidiary, Selvita Inc., headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Selvita is a leading global drug discovery company and the largest drug discovery company in Central and Eastern Europe. The new office, located at 485 Massachusetts Ave., will focus largely on expanding the company’s existing clients for its drug discovery services, as well as exploring and developing partnering opportunities.

Read more.

HENKE-SASS, WOLF A SO-CALLED “HIDDEN CHAMPION”

Every day, people all over the world use products and solutions produced by Henke-Sass, Wolf – often without even realizing it, as most of our products have the brand and label of our customers and not ours. As a medium-sized international company, and a technological leader in the medical endoscopy sector, we are sometimes considered a “hidden champion” – but certainly not “hidden” from our longstanding business partners and loyal customers.

Read more.

Massachusetts Data Protection Regulations 11/03/2015

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Internet and E-Commerce, Legal Developments, New Resources, Privacy and Data Security.
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As a reminder, Massachusetts has enacted stringent data protection regulations (the Massachusetts Standards for the Protection of Personal Information of Residents of the Commonwealth, 201 C.M.R. 17.00 et seq. (the “data protection regulations”) and data disposal legislation (Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 93I) (the “disposal law”).

These laws likely apply to your business to the extent that you collect information (either from your own employees or in connection with providing goods/services) that falls within the meaning of “personal information” under the data protection regulations.  Although the definition of “personal information” under the data protection regulations is relatively narrow (a Massachusetts resident’s first name and last name or first initial and last name in combination with any one or more of the following data elements that relate to such resident: (a) Social Security number; (b) driver’s license number or state-issued identification card number; or (c) financial account number, or credit or debit card number, with or without any required security code, access code, personal identification number or password, that would permit access to a resident’s financial account), the data protection regulations impose high minimum standards for protecting such information.  (The definition of “personal information” under the disposal law includes the same information as that in the data protection regulations’ definition, except that the disposal law’s definition also includes a Massachusetts resident’s first name and last name or first initial and last name in combination with a biometric indicator.)

Among other requirements, the data protection regulations require the adoption of a written information security program (WISP) including certain minimum administrative, technical, and physical safeguards – among which are to oversee third-party service providers and adhere to specific computer system security requirements.  The disposal law sets forth minimum standards for the proper disposal of records (including paper documents and non-paper media) containing personal information.

To assist in the compliance process with respect to the data protection regulations, the Massachusetts Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation has created a compliance checklist, as well as a guide for small businesses entitled “A Small Business Guide: Formulating A Comprehensive Written Information Security Program.”

If you would like help in preparing a WISP or addressing other compliance issues, please contact MBBP Attorney Faith Kasparian.

MBBP Client Selvita Establishes First U.S. Operations in Greater Boston Area 09/25/2015

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Client News, Life Sciences.
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MBBP client, Selvita, recently announced an expansion into the Boston-area biotechnology and pharmaceutical market, as they open a fully-owned US subsidiary, Selvita Inc., headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Selvita is a leading global drug discovery company and the largest drug discovery company in Central and Eastern Europe. The new office, located at 485 Massachusetts Ave., will focus largely on expanding the company’s existing clients for its drug discovery services, as well as exploring and developing partnering opportunities.

“We are excited to celebrate the official opening of Selvita’s new office in Cambridge,” said Mike Kennealy, Acting President & CEO of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, a state-funded investment agency that worked closely with Selvita on their location decision. “The company’s presence here will enable Selvita to make important contributions to the Massachusetts life sciences community and to drug development, in the world’s leading ecosystem for life sciences innovation and growth.”

Read the full news release here.

Summer Angel / Entrepreneur Panel – Registration Open! 07/06/2015

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Events, Venture Capital & Private Equity.
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Pitfalls, Perspectives and Possibilities of Angel Investments – Register Today!

With the proliferation of angel groups in the Boston area over the past several years, it has become increasingly challenging for entrepreneurs to navigate the process of raising money from angel investors. Better understanding the angel network and process can be extremely helpful to entrepreneurs as they go through this process.

Please join us for a lively discussion with our distinguished panel of angel investors and entrepreneurs which will address:

  • What criteria do angels use when considering an investment in portfolio companies?   How do they evaluate startup business plans? 
  • How should entrepreneurs prepare when targeting various angel groups? 
  • What common mistakes do companies make during the due diligence process?  
  • How can angels add value to their portfolio companies? 

Panelists:
Monica Brady-Myerov, Founder ListenCurrent
Paul Liberman, Co-founder, DraftKings
Ryan Moore, Partner, Accomplice (f/k/a Atlas Ventures) 
Vinit Nijhawan, Co-founder & Board Member, LearnLaunch

Get details here.

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