In the business law technology practice at Manning Fulton, our attorneys have extensive experience advising and assisting clients on a wide range of technology-based transactions and issues, as well as providing litigation counsel when technology-based disputes arise. We have an understanding of the business issues that impact intellectual property assets and transactions, and we work closely with both domestic and international clients to help them protect their technology assets and achieve their business objectives in a cost-effective manner.
Our attorneys understand that growing companies face challenges, some of which are unique to each individual business. Our skilled team understands these challenges and we work with our clients to strategically navigate the growth process. We are proud to provide a wide range of legal services to technology-driven businesses ranging in size from promising emerging growth businesses to large public and privately-held corporations.
Successful technology companies are founded on innovation and vision. Building the future of these enterprises also takes sound, practical guidance on financing sources, tax planning, human resource management, and intellectual property protection and exploitation. We represent private equity funds and venture capital funds as well as other financing sources for technology companies. Our depth of experience allows us to provide our clients with ways to evolve or enhance their existing businesses, as well to identify and structure arrangements to best meet our clients’ objectives.
As part of our suite of services, our attorneys assist clients in structuring and negotiating a wide range of agreements for software, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), internet, digital commerce, hosting, electronic business, and web applications. We draft and negotiate client-specific agreements for such applications covering a variety of technology-based subject matters including development and licensing, hosting, domain names, outsourcing, linking, database, and electronic payments and e-signatures, among others.
Additionally, our attorneys serve as outside general counsel for companies in various industries, including internet infrastructure, software, SaaS, manufacturing, distribution, finance, service, and defense contracting related businesses. We also assist technology companies with implementation of licensing agreements, software development agreements, service agreements, cyber incident plans and joint ventures.
We are proud to provide counsel on all business transactional needs of our evolving and established technology clients. Manning Fulton attorneys are able to assist with the contracts necessary to launch, run and develop a business, and with the special needs of companies, including mergers and acquisitions, debt and equity financing, and strategic alliances and joint ventures. We assist our clients in:
- Determining the business structure that maximizes their present and future opportunities.
- Planning effective tax strategies, including the best use of research and development tax credits.
- Negotiating and structuring debt and equity financing, including angel, seed, venture capital, and private equity transactions.
- Structuring, negotiating, and documenting, merger & acquisition transactions.
- Conducting due diligence reviews in conjunction with a wide range of transactions.
- Advising on employee issues such as executive compensation plans (including incentive and restrictive stock plans, stock appreciation rights, phantom stock and stock options) and retirement plans.
- Working with employers on employee hiring and termination, and structuring and drafting employment agreements, confidentiality and inventions agreements, noncompetition agreements, work-for-hire agreements, and separation and termination agreements.
- Drafting sophisticated solutions for shared intellectual property when lines of business are either sold or acquired.
Establishing and protecting intellectual property rights, and exploiting those rights through creative business ventures, are crucial to most technology companies. Some of the areas where we assist our technology clients include:
- Establishing intellectual property rights through the use of trademarks, copyrights, and trade secret protection.
- Negotiating the development and licensing of technology and intellectual property rights, including development joint ventures, licensing agreements, and distribution agreements, on behalf of both licensors and licensees.
- Structuring and negotiating end-user and software distribution agreements and SaaS agreements.
- Enforcing licensing and joint venture agreement provisions and arrangements.
- Developing and implementing internet and e-commerce strategies.
- Counseling clients on their overall intellectual property strategy.
In addition to general business and litigation representation of clients in the AgTech sector, Manning Fulton attorneys provide a variety of services specific to AgTech. These services include representation dealing with plant variety protection for seed companies, including plant variety litigation as well as Plant Variety Protection (PVP) certificates, plant patents and searches related to the same. We have also represented AgTech clients in patent litigation, licensing, trademark protection, and general intellectual property counseling.
Our clients in this sector are from a broad range and have included seed companies, a large international crop science company, an international probiotics company, and a biotech feed additive company, as well as more traditional Eastern North Carolina companies engaged in food processing and distribution.
Data Centers and Cloud Computing
Our services within this vertical include:
- Providing counsel for companies in various facets of the data center and cloud computing business, including data centers, internet infrastructure and managed service businesses.
- Drafting and negotiating Master Service Agreements, Service Level Agreements, and Acceptable Use Policies for data center, cloud computing, managed service businesses, and companies utilizing those services.
- Representing buyers, sellers and investors in complex buyout and strategic transactions in connection with data centers and cloud computing technology.
- Representing investors, landlords, and tenants in connection with data center construction, development and leases, including “turn-key” and “powered shell” data center leases.