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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.

Just Posted – MBBP’s 2015 M&A Year in Review! 03/31/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Attorney News, M&A, MBBP news.
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M&A TodayCheck out MBBP’s M&A Today blog for a sampling of our successful M&A transactions from 2015.

We take pride in guiding clients through the complexities of M&A transactions in markets as diverse as analytical instruments, software, SAAS, industrial controls, pharmaceuticals, biotech, medical devices, transportation, professional services, and oil & gas.

Cheers to great clients!

 

 

Mark Tarallo Teaching at IP & Entrepreneurship Clinic 03/30/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Attorney News, Events, MBBP news.
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Attorney Mark Tarallo will teach at the Intellectual Property & Entrepreneurship Clinic of Suffolk Law School tomorrow on the subject of Choice of Entity.

Key topics that will be discussed:

  • Choice of Entity in Formations
  • Issues to Consider When Choosing an Entity
  • Equity Compensation Plans for Different Entities

MBBP Marketing Team Brings Home Another LMA Your Honor Award 03/24/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in MBBP news.
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lma yha logoOn March 23, 2016 at the LMA (Legal Marketing Association) New England Your Honor Awards MBBP Marketing Manager, Jaclyn Braga, and her team were winners of the second place trophy in the website category. The LMA Your Honor Awards program recognizes excellence in legal marketing by honoring projects and programs that demonstrate innovation, creativity, cost-consciousness and return on marketing dollars investment. The event was held at WilmerHale at 60 State Street in Boston.

This is the fifth time in six years that Jaclyn and her team have been so honored, receiving the first award in 2009 in the advertisement category, and scoring a National LMA First Place trophy in 2013 for their entry “A Prescription for Swag” in the “Identity-Projects Totaling Up to $20,000” category.

The judging panel was comprised of four notable marketing specialists, several of whom practice outside the legal marketing field; they deliberated for many hours before selecting the finalists.

“It’s particularly meaningful to be honored by one’s peers,” Braga said, “and we’re both pleased and humbled by this award.”

It’s worth noting that the website project was executed over the course of 18 months, and required Braga and the team to employ their full range of skills, from the creative to the technical, in collaboration with Greenfield Belser. It’s also worth remembering that the MBBP team, still so small in number, competes for these awards against firms from all over New England, many of which employ significantly larger marketing teams with significantly larger budgets.  Talent will out!

Check out the award-winning website here!

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.

Employees and St. Patrick’s Day – what could go wrong there?!? 03/17/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Employment.
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shamrock-iconEmployers already know that sexual harassment in the workplace is illegal and can result in liability, but employers should also know that under some circumstances sexual harassment outside of the workplace can result in employer liability.

Check out today’s post on our Employment Law Blog to learn more!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day from our Employment Team!

Is there an Exit at the End of Your Rainbow? 03/17/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Corporate, M&A, Taxation.
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There was green alligators and long-neck geese.

There was humpy bumpy camels and chimpanzees.

There was catsandratsandelephants, but sure as you’re born

the lovliest of all was the Unicorn. 

– from “The Unicorn” by Shel Silverstein

unicornToday I am reminded of “The Unicorn,” by Shel Silverstein and popularized in song in the ’60s by The Irish Rovers.

Besides a catchy tune (which gets better by the pint), a “unicorn” is a start-up company whose value exceeds $1 Billion.

While not every start-up will be a unicorn, every start-up can hope for a favorable exit.

From a tax perspective, however, we have seen the excitement surrounding an exit be dampened by improper tax elections (e.g., S corporation elections, 83(b) elections), faulty granting of equity compensation, non-compliant deferred compensation plans, and incorrect state, sales and/or employment tax filings, to name just a few.

My message for you this St. Patrick’s Day:  Avoiding tax issues in M&A does not require the luck o’ the Irish, just competent tax advice.

Is it time to start thinking about securing your pot of gold? Contact Diana Española.

 

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.

MBBP Attorneys Speaking at Upcoming swissnex Boston Seminar 03/09/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Corporate, Employment, Events, Intellectual Property.
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This Friday, March 11th MBBP Attorneys Scott Bleier, Stan Chalvire, Maura Malone, and Callie Pioli will present to Swiss MBA students at swissnex Boston, the consulate of Switzerland. The panel will discuss legal standpoints on conducting business in the U.S., focusing on topics including corporate, employment, and intellectual property law.

For more information regarding this seminar, please feel free to contact a member of our team.

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

 

FAQ: How detailed should Board of Directors meetings’ minutes be? 03/03/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Corporate.
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Young entrepreneurs and corporate associates of emerging companies frequently ask: “How detailed should Board of Directors meetings’ minutes be?”  The short answer is: Do not delve into minutiae, other than precision for approval of equity issuances, option grants and material contracts.

How much detail should you add that might give investors or acquirers cause for unnecessary concern? Read the full response over on our VCs and Startups Blog or contact John Hession.

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.

MBBP Publishes February M&A Today Newsletter 03/01/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Corporate, Intellectual Property, Legal Developments, M&A, Taxation.
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MA Today Banner (M0620645)Hot off the press!

Articles include:

  • Tips for Enforcing Indemnification Provisions
  • Permanent Exclusion of Gain on Sales of Qualified Small Business Stock
  • IP Due Diligence: Patentability vs. Patent Infringement

Get more info on our M&A blog or read the full newsletter.

 

“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.

What’s in Your Employee Handbook? (It Matters!) 02/01/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Employment, Legal Developments.
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Employment Attorney Sandra KahnEmployee handbooks are helpful as long as they are accurate, up-to-date and do not unintentionally create contractual rights. But handbooks that contain promissory language, legally non-compliant policies or outdated information may result in confusion and potential liability.

Employment attorney Sandy Kahn addresses some common mistakes employers should avoid in her New England In-House article, “Employee handbook can be source of potential liability.”

MBBP Attorney to Host Office Hours at TechSandBox 1/28/2016 01/22/2016

Posted by Morse, Barnes-Brown Pendleton in Attorney News, Events.
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Sean D. Detweiler (SDD)On  Thursday, January 28, MBBP Attorney Sean Detweiler will host Office Hours at TechSandBox to help answer your patent and strategy questions.

Office Hours provides access to experts in topics such as intellectual property, business formation, benefits, taxes, marketing, sales, funding, IT and technology commercialization. Sean will be available for one-on-one, 45 minute sessions from 1:00PM- 5:00PM. This event will be offered probono for TechSandBox members and to non-members as space allows.

Sign up today to reserve your time slot by visiting TechSandBox!

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