Foley Adds Heller Ehrman Life Sciences Transactional Team

12 November 2008 Media Contact: Jill Chanen News

Three-attorney Team Led by Richard Kaufman Brings Extensive Life Sciences and Biotechnology Industry Experience; Arrival Builds on Firm’s 10 Heller Ehrman Additions Last Month.

Foley today announced that three former Heller Ehrman LLP attorneys, led by life sciences transactional attorney Richard Kaufman, will join the firm’s Business Law and Intellectual Property Departments and reside in the San Diego and Del Mar offices.

Kaufman is joined by David Charapp, who will join Foley’s Business Law Department as Special Counsel, and Dr. Leslie Overman, an attorney who will join Foley’s Intellectual Property Department. These additions come on the heels of a 10-attorney team from Heller Ehrman which joined Foley’s Litigation and Intellectual Property Departments in San Diego and Del Mar last month.

“I am pleased to be joining Foley and look forward to building upon and leveraging the firm’s strengths in the life sciences sector,” said Kaufman. “Foley’s platform provides a significant opportunity for me, as well as my colleagues David and Les, to expand our practice nationally and abroad.”

“Rick and his team add a unique life sciences transactional capability to our already strong corporate transactional platform,” explained Joseph Tyson, chair of Foley’s Business Law Department. “Beyond their life sciences background, we are also eager to leverage the in-house experience this team brings to Foley and their work handling complex strategic partnerships of both emerging and established companies.”

Joining Foley’s Business Law Department, Kaufman focuses his practice on the needs of the life sciences industry, representing clients in the drug, biologics, medical devices, discovery technology, and bioinformatics fields. He frequently handles matters dealing with licensing, strategic collaborations, spin-out transactions, clinical trial agreements, process development and manufacturing agreements, and distribution agreements, as well as capital formation and mergers and acquisitions.

Previously, Kaufman served as general counsel and consultant for Trega Biosciences, Inc., once a publicly held biotechnology company engaged in the development of products to treat metabolic disorders such as diabetes and obesity, as well as the development of discovery tools for the pharmaceutical industry based upon the techniques of combinatorial chemistry and predictive pharmacokinetics. In addition, he has served as general counsel of a peptide-based drug and device developer and of a large-scale cell culture manufacturer, both of which were public companies. He has handled compliance with federal and state securities reporting requirements, stock option and stock purchase plan matters, annual meeting and investor relations matters, management of intellectual property matters, matters pertaining to operation of boards of directors and their committees, human resources matters, and a variety of additional matters.

“Rick is nationally recognized for his transactional work on behalf of companies in the life sciences industry,” said Sharon R. Barner, chair of the firm’s Intellectual Property Department. “In addition to the significant depth he will add to the firm’s Business Law Department, he is an exceptional attorney who immediately strengthens our pre-eminent intellectual property capabilities as well.”

“The arrival of Rick and this team, combined with the group of highly talented attorneys we added to the firm last month, illustrates the rapid growth of our San Diego and Del Mar offices in strategic practice areas,” said Van Tengberg, managing partner of Foley’s San Diego and Del Mar offices. “With such a rich background of in-house experience combined with their life sciences, biotechnology and intellectual property work, we look forward to the contributions that this group will make to the Foley team.”

Charapp focuses his practice on life sciences companies, handling a wide range of transactional and corporate matters. During his career in private practice and as associate general counsel with Santarus, Inc. and Kosan Biosciences Incorporated, Charapp has structured and negotiated numerous strategic collaborations, licenses, co-promotion agreements, manufacturing and supply agreements, distribution agreements, pre-clinical and clinical research agreements, agreements with managed care organizations and government payors, wholesaler agreements, public and private financing transactions, mergers, acquisitions and dispositions. 

Dr. Overman is a registered patent attorney and a Ph.D. biochemist with substantial experience as a staff scientist at several biotechnology companies. In addition to agreement work, his practice includes managing and coordinating worldwide patent portfolios, providing patent counseling and assisting in patent litigation. Previously, Dr. Overman also served as in-house counsel at a biotechnology company and then at an Internet startup.

For more than 25 years, Foley’s Life Sciences Industry Team has provided comprehensive legal services for life sciences enterprises. More than 45 of Foley’s Life Sciences Industry Team’s attorneys and paraprofessionals hold Ph.D.s, and more than 40 hold Master’s degrees in a relevant science. Melding crucial legal disciplines in the areas of business, intellectual property, health care, and U.S. Food and Drug Administration regulatory law, members of Foley’s Life Sciences Industry Team have research or commercial experience in numerous related areas, including agricultural biotechnology, biochemistry, biologics, bio-pharmacology, biophysics, diagnostics, endocrinology, materials science and engineering, neurosciences, nutraceuticals, organic and protein chemistry, pharmacology, stem cells and regenerative medicine, and vaccines.

Foley & Lardner LLP continually evolves to meet the changing legal needs of our clients. Our team-based approach, proprietary client service technology, and practice depth enhance client relationships while seeing clients through their most complex legal challenges. The BTI Consulting Group (Wellesley, Massachusetts) recently recognized Foley as one of the top four law firms shaping the U.S. legal market, while CIO magazine has named Foley to its CIO 100 list six times for our client-focused technology. With more than 1,000 attorneys in 22 offices and more than 50 practices, count on Foley for high-caliber business and legal insight.

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