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2011 Spring Symposium: Creative Capital: Intellectual Property Creation and Venture Capital

Published onMar 25, 2011
2011 Spring Symposium: Creative Capital: Intellectual Property Creation and Venture Capital

Date: March 25, 2011
Time: 10:00 a.m. – 3:45 p.m. est.
Location: Worrell Professional Center – Room 1312


In the business of innovation, issues of intellectual property protection and access to venture capital financing are inextricably intertwined. When entrepreneurs turn to venture capital as a source of funding, venture capitalists rely on intellectual property to protect investments in new technology. The symposium will address the many points of intersection between intellectual property and business law, especially in the context of the IP-based startup company. Panelists, including entrepreneurs, business managers, attorneys, and legal scholars, will present on two very practical issues: how intellectual property is used as a negotiating tool and the underlying tension between the venture capital markets and intellectual property law in a competitive landscape.

CLE Credit is available for practicing attorneys:
     •  Morning attendance: 2.5 General CLE Credits
     •  Afternoon attendance: 0.5 Ethics/Professional Responsibility Credits


No registration is required for symposium attendance. Registration for CLE credits will take place on the day of the symposium.

For more information, please contact Emily Cantrell, Symposium Editor.


Keynote: Open Versus Proprietary as Business Strategy

Bob Young, CEO & Founder of, Co-founder of Red Hat

The business press is full of dog eat dog competitive business battle stories. These make for great press and sell lots of magazines, but they are in fact the exception rather than the rule for most successful businesses. To better serve their customers, most successful businesses spend more time collaborating and cooperating with a wide range of other businesses (including competitors) than they do worrying about their competitors. From his days selling typewriters in his wife’s sewing closet to his experience building Red Hat (an S&P 500 open source technology company) and his current enterprise, Young will explain how you can better serve your customers by adopting open strategies than by attempting a proprietary strategy.

Panel 1 – Intellectual Property: Cradle to Grave

Dean Stell, Associate Director, Office of Technology Asset Management, Wake Forest University

Mr. Stell will discuss university patenting and the technology transfer process from the perspective of the patent holder.

T. Robert Rehm, Jr., Partner, Smith, Anderson, Blount, Dorsett, Mitchell & Jernigan, LLP

Mr. Rehm will discuss how attorneys are involved in the technology transfer process – such as drafting licensing, confidentiality, and non-disclosure agreements.

Michael S. Mireles, Associate Professor, University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law

Mr. Mireles will discuss the Stanford v. Roche Molecular Systems case, pending before the U.S. Supreme Court, and the potential practical and legal implications on university technology transfer.

Daniel Egger, Co-Founder, Wake Forest Elevator Competition Founder & CEO, Open Source Risk Management, Inc.

Mr. Egger has 17 years of experience in the field of information technology entrepreneurship and venture capital. Mr. Egger will discuss the legal risks that arise when companies build products on top of third party patented/copyrighted material.

Sibilla Nagel, J.D., Attorney and Partner, Rittershaus (Munich, Germany)

Sibilla Nagel is an economist and expert advisor to corporations and start-ups on M&A, venture capital transactions and technology transfer. She has co-authored reference works on licensing agreements and on corporate law and is the author of numerous articles on M&A issues. Sibilla Nagel will contribute perspectives from the European Union in the areas of her particular expertise: technology transfer, international licensing and related matters in European anti-trust laws.

Panel 2 – Financing the IP-Based Startup

Sharon C. Presnell, Ph.D., Senior Vice President, Tengion

Ms. Presnell will present on strategies for identifying intellectual property emerging from research and development; vetting processes useful towards understanding technology within the competitive landscape; and strategies for advancing technologies within the context of a competitive landscape. Ms. Presnell’s article, “Advancing Technology in the Context of the Competitive Landscape: An Industrial Technologist’s Perspective,” will be published in the Journal’s Symposium issue.

Therese H. Maynard, Professor of Law, Loyola Law School

Prof. Maynard’s presentation, entitled “Ethics for Business Lawyers Representing Start-Up Companies,” queries whether it is appropriate for the lawyer to take an ownership interest in the new business (i.e., stock) in lieu of paying fees for the lawyer’s services. Prof. Maynard is the co-author of a new casebook, Business Planning: Financing the Start-Up Business and Venture Capital Financing (Aspen Law 2010).

Merrill Mason, Partner, Smith, Anderson, Blount, Dorsett, Mitchell & Jernigan, LLP

Mr. Mason is listed in the The Best Lawyers in America under the Securities/Venture Capital category, and is a Member of the Board of Directors of Council for Entrepreneurial Development. Mr. Mason will present on the valuation of a start-up business and the role of the attorney in drafting licensing agreements and managing SEC filings and antitrust concerns.

Martin Sinozich, President/Partner, Venn Capital

Mr. Sinozich has a diverse background in owning and managing a range of businesses. He is currently a Managing Member of Venn Capital, a local private investment company, and an active member of the Piedmont Angel Network. Mr. Sinozich will discuss the venture capital landscape and how the industry assesses when an applicant is ripe for venture capital. Mr. Sinozich will also address the process of transacting a venture capital deal including key strategies for negotiating term sheets and stock purchase agreements with venture capitalists.


10:00 – 10:30

Registration and Breakfast

10:30 – 10:45

Welcome by Law School Dean Blake Morant and Business School Dean Steve Reinemund

10:45 – 12:00

Panel 1: Intellectual Property – Cradle to Grave
Moderated by Simone Rose, Wake Forest University Law School
Dean Stell, WFU Office of Technology Asset Management
Robert Rehm, Smith, Anderson, LLP
Daniel Egger, Open Source Risk Management; WFU Elevator Competition
Michael Mireles, University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law
Sibilla Nagel, Rittershaus (Munich, Germany)

12:15 – 1:15

Lunch and Keynote Address – Bob Young , CEO and Founder,, Co-Founder, Red Hat
     • Q’doba boxed lunches served to all attendees      • Refreshments/snacks available throughout the day

1:15 – 2:30

Panel 2: Financing the IP-Based Start-up
Moderated by: Kim Westmoreland, Serial Entrepreneur, and Stan Mandel, Professor, WFU Schools of Business/Direct, Angell Center for Entrepreneurship
Merrill Mason, Smith, Anderson, LLP
Sharon Presnell, Tengion
Therese Maynard, Loyola Law School
Martin Sinozich, Venn Capital

1:30 – 2:30

One-on-One with Bob Young – Room 1106 – By Invitation Only

2:30 – 2:45

Closing Remarks

2:45 – 3:45

Reception (Worrell Professional Center Courtyard)


Panel 1: Intellectual Property- Cradle to Grave.
Featuring Dean Stell, Daniel Egger, Michael Mireles, and Sibilla Nagel

Keynote: Bob Young

Panel 2: Financing the IP-Based Start Up
Featuring Merrill Mason, Sharon Presnell, Therese Maynard, and Martin Sinozich

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