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Life Sciences


Lawyers in our Firm’s Life Sciences practice group have played a fundamental role in the development of North Carolina’s Research Triangle into an internationally-recognized center of life sciences innovation. For over 20 years, we have worked side-by-side with industry pioneers and have advised our clients in numerous transactions that have been milestones for the life sciences industry in this region. Our lawyers combine comprehensive legal expertise with deep industry knowledge to provide our clients with effective, timely solutions to meet their business objectives.

Our Life Sciences practice spans a diverse spectrum of companies, from venture capital-backed companies, start-ups and university spin-outs to publicly-traded companies, including large pharma, specialty pharma, biotechnology, agricultural biotechnology, animal health, biofuels, medical device, nanotechnology, CRO, and other biopharmaceutical services companies. We also advise some of the region’s leading life sciences-focused private equity and venture capital firms and other investors.

We perform a broad range of services for our life sciences clients, including Technology, Debt Financing, Mergers and Acquisitions, and other matters relating to business and Securities law. As a full-service law firm, we also help our life sciences clients achieve their goals through our litigation and dispute resolution practice and by advising on labor and employment matters, employee benefits, tax strategies, government relations, and other key matters.


  • Lead counsel to a venture capital-funded genome editing company in a worldwide partnership, worth up to $1.6 billion, including an upfront payment of $105 million, with a global, publicly-traded pharmaceutical company to develop and commercialize allogeneic chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapies for multiple cancers. The transaction was awarded the 2016 Life Science sector Deals of Distinction™ award by the Licensing Executives Society.
  • Worldwide exclusive license of pre-clinical drug compounds by our client, a specialty pharmaceutical company, to a global pharmaceutical company
  • Formation and funding of pharmaceutical company by our clients, a group of venture capital investors, and the related in-license of pharmaceutical product rights from a global pharmaceutical company
  • Collaboration/strategic alliance between our client, a leading pharmaceutical development company, and a global, Japanese-based pharmaceutical company for the development of pharmaceutical products on a risk-sharing basis
  • Divestment by our client, a global pharmaceutical company, of pharmaceutical product rights to a specialty pharmaceutical company
  • License and acquisition by our client, a specialty pharmaceutical company, of pharmaceutical intellectual property from a global pharmaceutical company and related sub-licenses from other global pharmaceutical companies
  • Worldwide exclusive license and research collaboration between our client, a biotechnology company and a leading global animal health company, to develop and commercialize animal vaccines
  • Worldwide non-exclusive licenses by our client, an agricultural biotechnology company, to leading global agricultural companies for development of agronomic traits
  • Worldwide exclusive license of genome engineering technology by our client, a charitable organization that supports development of agricultural disease resistance technologies, to a global biotechnology tools company
  • $525 million notes offering by our client, a global biopharmaceutical services company
  • $400 million acquisition of our client, a venture-backed agricultural biotechnology company, by a global pharmaceutical and agricultural company
  • $155 million acquisition of our client, a biotechnology company, by a global pharmaceutical and animal health company
  • $150 million acquisition by our client, a public specialty pharmaceutical company, of a private specialty pharmaceutical company
  • $60 million venture capital financing by our client, a biotechnology company
  • Private placement offering of securities by our client, a university spin-out, to accredited investors


  • Research, development and commercialization collaborations
  • Partnering, strategic alliance and joint venture arrangements
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Product and asset acquisitions and divestitures
  • Intellectual property and technology licensing and transfer
  • Venture capital, initial public offerings and other equity and debt financings
  • Clinical trial and CRO arrangements
  • Manufacturing, supply and distribution arrangements
  • Sales force and co-promotion arrangements
  • Company formation, structuring and governance
  • Dispute resolution

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2016 Closed Transactions

2016 Closed Transactions

Since January 2016, Smith Anderson has advised clients in more than 300 transactions representing approximately $30 billion in value, including mergers, acquisitions and divestitures; real estate development and construction; life sciences and health care; technology and intellectual property; debt finance; private equity and mezzanine finance; initial public offerings; growth companies and venture capital; and fund formation. The following provides a comprehensive overview of some of our clients' key business transactions in 2016. Highlights include: 

  • Over 60 Mergers, Acquisitions and Public Offerings totaling approximately $22 billion, including the representation of Quintiles in its merger with IMS Health Holdings.
  • Over 60 Life Sciences and Health Care transactions, including an immuno-oncology partnership worth up to $1.6 billion for genome editing company Precision BioSciences.
  • Over 70 Debt Finance and more than 50 Private Equity and Mezzanine Finance transactions totaling more than $4 billion.
  • Over 100 Real Estate and Construction matters totaling more than $2 billion
  • Over 60 Technology and Intellectual Property transactions totaling more than $3 billion, including the representation of Southern Company and PowerSecure, Inc. in their strategic alliance with Bloom Energy Corporation.

Our firm is fortunate to have worked on a wide array of transactions with a diverse group of clients. CLICK HERE to expand the image below, which lists some of our clients and their business transactions in 2016.

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