Covington’s Venture Capital and Emerging Companies practice combines our experience and expertise in representing early stage companies, venture capital investors and strategic investors with our deep industry and regulatory knowledge.  Our expertise extends to a broad range of industries, including life sciences, media and communications, software, Internet services, financial services, clean technology and telecommunications.  Through our geographic reach, we have gained significant experience handling cross-border venture investments involving the US and the UK, as well as Europe and Asia.

Covington approaches the representation of emerging companies, venture capital firms and other investors with keen business judgment, deep legal expertise, creativity, a dedicated team with significant partner involvement, responsiveness, and valuable input from industry and regulatory experts throughout the firm.

We represent early stage companies at all levels and in all aspects of their business: structuring relationships with founders, securing intellectual property rights, establishing employment policies and equity incentive plans, and negotiating initial funding.  As companies develop and expand, we provide strategic and legal advice, both domestic and international, in connection with regulatory issues applicable to their products and services, strategic partnerships, distribution and licensing arrangements, venture capital financings, and liquidity events including IPOs and M&A transactions.

We take a deal-oriented approach to venture capital transactions, focusing on critical due diligence and economic issues.  Covington’s venture capital lawyers understand the objectives of our venture and strategic investors and we focus on structuring transactions to meet these objectives.

Our securities attorneys have advised issuers on IPOs and other public offerings on the NYSE, NASDAQ, the LSE, AIM, Euronext and other international markets.

Representative Matters

  • Asahi Kasei Pharma Corporation, a leading Japanese pharmaceutical company, in the spin-out of a late stage clinical product to a new company, Artisan Pharma, Inc., and the simultaneous $39 million venture financing of Artisan.
  • bioMerieux S.A., a global provider of in vitro medical diagnostics, in a Series B investment in ReLIA Diagnostics Systems Inc., a developer of a point-of-care rapid test platform.
  • Chiron Corporation, a leading vaccine manufacturer, in the spin-out of its PowderJect business and assets to PowderMed Limited, a UK-based, venture-backed development company.
  • cMarket, Inc., a Cambridge, Massachusetts-based provider of an online auction platform for organizations engaged in fundraising for non-profit causes, in a private placement of $10 million of Series C Preferred Stock to Canaan Ventures.
  • Expansion Capital Partners, LLC, a New York-based clean technology venture capital firm, in its $4.5 million Series C Preferred Stock investment in Orion Energy Systems, Ltd., a developer and manufacturer of energy efficient lighting systems and controls.
  • Fairfield Language Learning, the developer of Rosetta Stone software, in a leveraged buyout transaction by ABS Capital and Norwest Equity Partners


  • Legal 500 US, Venture Capital and Emerging Companies (2015)
  • Chambers UK, Private Equity: Venture Capital Investment (2015)
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