Venture Capital and Emerging Companies

  • Holland & Knight’s Venture Capital and Emerging Companies Team represents emerging companies and the investors that fund them.
  • Our team guides emerging companies through their entire business life cycle, offering strategic, timely advice at every stage.

Company Representation

Our Venture Capital and Emerging Companies Team possesses the business acumen and legal experience to guide a company through the opportunities and challenges that arise during its entire life cycle. We advise a broad array of emerging companies on a local, national and global scale through each stage of their development. Our clients are engaged in a variety of industries, including:

  • biotechnology
  • communications
  • computer chip technologies
  • consumer products
  • e-commerce
  • entertainment
  • hardware
  • healthcare
  • Internet services
  • medical devices
  • mobile devices and technology
  • renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies
  • social media
  • software
  • telecommunications

Starting Your Business

One of the most critical first steps in starting a business is selecting the right legal entity under which to operate. Our team is well-versed in the tax and legal (and often business) considerations involved in entity formation and we will assist you in selecting and structuring the best legal entity for your start-up.

Financing Your Business

We have extensive experience helping companies locate and screen potential investors and can help you develop relationships with angel investors, venture capitalists, private equity funds and investment bankers. We will also guide you in securing, negotiating and structuring financing.  Our emerging company financing experience encompasses all forms of funding, including:

  • angel and seed-round financings
  • early, mid- and later stage venture capital financing
  • asset-based and cash flow financing
  • bridge loans and other convertible debt issuances
  • PIPEs
  • public offerings

Growing Your Business

Our Venture Capital and Emerging Companies Team has extensive experience addressing the legal issues involved in developing a young company to its full potential. We will work with you through the entire life cycle of your company, offering strategic, timely advice at every stage to help you understand issues and identify potential pitfalls. Additionally, we will provide you with comprehensive transactional and operational guidance in areas such as:

  • growth opportunities through mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures, strategic alliances and co-development agreements
  • corporate governance
  • employee retention and compensation, including equity incentive and bonus plans
  • tax issues
  • real estate
  • customer and vendor agreements, including click wrap agreements and terms of use
  • data privacy and security
  • regulatory compliance
  • government contracts
  • going public and initial public offerings
  • succession planning and exit strategies

IP Protection

We understand the critical need to preserve and protect your company’s most important asset – its intellectual property – and we will carefully guard your interests in everything from patent and trademark prosecution and licensing to technology transfers, copyright protection and trade secret preservation. Applying our technical knowledge and experience, we can help you devise strategies to enhance your market position by optimizing your intellectual capital while protecting you from infringement and competition.

Thorough Tax Planning

Emerging companies face complex local, state, federal and international tax issues. Working collaboratively with our tax, tax controversy and tax litigation attorneys, we counsel clients on how to minimize their tax obligation and avoid potential pitfalls. In conjunction with our Private Wealth Services Group, we also help entrepreneurs and investors structure and liquidate their interests in the most tax efficient manner possible.

Investor Representation

Our team advises venture capital investors on all aspects of raising and deploying capital.  We advise venture capital firms on fund formation and administration and represent venture capital firms, corporate strategic investors, angel investors and family offices in direct investments in emerging growth companies. We also represent pension funds, endowments, large companies and high-net worth individuals investing in funds and funds of funds.

Our attorneys consider the economic and business factors involved in every transaction, including the potential benefits and risks associated with an investment, in an effort to develop optimal solutions for our investor clients. We also assist investors in identifying issues and developing solutions related to due diligence, risk management, liquidating investments and making distributions to investors.

Advantageous Relationships

Members of our team have relationships with both investors and entrepreneurs, enabling us to unite companies seeking to raise funding with investors seeking opportunities. We regularly help venture capital firms identify potential portfolio companies in which to invest and assist emerging growth companies in achieving their funding goals. Because we represent both investors and companies raising venture capital, we have a special insight that enhances our ability to develop creative solutions to the complex challenges inherent in venture capital transactions.

A Legal Team Designed for You

We are committed to providing timely advice, responsive service and applying the resources of our global team to give you a competitive advantage in today’s complex, challenging marketplace. We understand every client is different and you have your own unique needs and objectives. We collaborate closely with you and call upon lawyers and professionals throughout the firm to create a custom legal team designed to meet your specific needs as efficiently and effectively as possible. When necessary, we draw assistance in areas such as tax, intellectual property, real estate, government contracts, pension law, ERISA law, and labor and employment.

Educating Clients for Success

When you partner with Holland & Knight, you receive comprehensive representation, insightful guidance and innovative solutions aimed at helping you attain your business goals. We strive to provide our clients with unparalleled client service and tools to help you succeed. As an added value, we regularly organize and participate in seminars and conferences on financing and operational issues. In addition, we frequently publish articles on topics of interest to investors and emerging companies.