Venture Briefing: Supreme Court Rules that the Employees of Private Contractors Protected by SOX’s W Venture Briefing: Supreme Court Rules that the Employees of Private Contractors Protected by SOX’s W

Venture Briefing: Supreme Court Rules that the Employees of Private Contractors Protected by SOX’s Whistle-Blower Provision

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Venture Capital Fundraising Up 111 Percent in First Quarter
U.S. venture capital firms raised more cash in the first three months of this year than at any time since the final quarter of 2007, but it's still a handful of funds driving up the numbers. Venture firms raised $9.64 billion in the first quarter, a 111 percent increase over a year ago when the total take was $4.56 billion, according to Dow Jones VentureSource, a data provider owned by VentureWire publisher Dow Jones & Co.
(Source: The Wall Street Journal, 2014-04-15) Read the full article
IPO Market Expected to See Cool-Off Period
A hot market for initial public offerings might soon face a cooler reception from investors. IPOs are having their best start to a year since 2000, but demand for more offerings depends largely on the health of the broader market, and the clamor from buyers could quiet down.
(Source: Augusta Chronicle, 2014-04-14) Read the full article
SEC Group Will Examine Private Equity, Hedge Funds
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has put together a dedicated group to examine private equity and hedge funds, after the 2010 Dodd-Frank law required the funds to be regulated, according to people familiar with the matter. The examiners will look at areas including how private equity and hedge funds value their assets, disclose their fees, and communicate with investors.
(Source: Reuters, 2014-04-07) Read the full article
Reports by Internal Auditors Found to be 'Sanitized'
Reports by internal auditors to board audit committees are often "sanitized" during prior interactions between senior management and internal audit, the audit committee chair of two different companies acknowledged. Speaking during a PwC webcast, John Fazio, the audit committee chair of Sequenom, a life sciences company, as well as Heidrick & Struggles International, an executive search firm, said that although he formally gets only terse reports from internal audit, he gets a much fuller picture of what's really going on via frequent, informal meetings with internal auditors.
(Source:, 2014-04-09) Read the full article
Companies Form Group to Lobby Against Patent System Changes
Major U.S. companies including Ford, Apple and Pfizer have formed a lobbying group aimed at pushing back at some changes to the patent system members of Congress have proposed, saying these measures would hinder protection of valuable inventions. The group is concerned about pending legislation aimed at fighting patent assertion entities, companies which produce nothing but instead buy up patents and then attempt to extract licensing fees or sue for infringement.
(Source: Reuters, 2014-04-03) Read the full article
Start-Ups with More Capital Confident in Asking for More Funds
Several factors are driving the proliferation of big late-stage investments. Technology start-ups are staying private longer, venture capital firms are looking to put idle funds to work, and institutional investors are chasing returns in fast-growing private companies.
(Source: The New York Times, 2014-04-13) Read the full article
Study Finds Venture Capital Investments Shifting Back to Cities
One of the most profound real resets from the Great Recession has been the movement of talent, capital and companies back to America's cities and dense, transit-accessible inner suburbs. It shows up in venture capital, too, according to a new study from the Martin Prosperity Institute.
(Source: Seattle Times, 2014-04-07) Read the full article
Buyout Firms Offering Limited Partners New Club Deals
As deals grow larger again, buyout firms are inviting selected limited partners to invest alongside them. According to a survey released last month by the research firm Preqin, nearly a third of shops plan to offer more co-investment opportunities than they did a year before, and half of private equity investors intend to increase their co-investment activity.
(Source: The New York Times, 2014-04-08) Read the full article
Improving Economy Has Fewer People Starting New Businesses
Here's a counterintuitive finding: As the economy improves, fewer people are starting businesses. One might think that a healthier economy might draw more people to strike out on their own, but the reality of entrepreneurship is grimmer.
(Source: Bloomberg Businessweek, 2014-04-09) Read the full article
Supreme Court Rules that the Employees of Private Contractors Protected by SOX’s Whistle-Blower Provision



A divided Supreme Court ruled in Lawson v. FMR LLC, that the anti-retaliation protection provided to whistleblowers by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (“SOX”) applies to employees of private complaints that contract with public companies. The whistleblower plaintiffs worked for mutual fund advisors, rather than the public company mutual funds themselves. This is common practice in the mutual fund industry. Read full article online.


By The Numbers

Business creation by older Americans grew more than 60 percent between 1996 and 2012, according to the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.
Source: Kauffman Foundation


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Ice Miller has been one of the most active law firms in the private equity industry over the last decade, representing both entrepreneurs building great companies and the private equity firms and individuals that invest in them. We have extensive experience with all types of funds (formations and operations); mezzanine and senior secured financing; leveraged buyouts, roll-ups, build-ups, and consolidations; divestitures and exits; and complex litigation on behalf of investors and privately financed companies. In addition, over the past 10 years, Ice Miller has represented hundreds of emerging growth businesses in various industries on such matters as entity formation, capitalization, capital raising, alternative financing, intellectual property rights and protection, growth and exit strategies, corporate governance, tax matters, and many other legal issues that are critical to the growth and success of an emerging company.

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