Venture Briefing: Swimming in "Other Waters" - Does EPA's New Proposed Rule on Waters of the United Venture Briefing: Swimming in "Other Waters" - Does EPA's New Proposed Rule on Waters of the United

Venture Briefing: Swimming in "Other Waters" - Does EPA's New Proposed Rule on Waters of the United States Provide Predictability and Consistency to Your Industry?

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Supreme Court May be Poised to Narrow Software Patents
The future of business and software patents hung in the balance inside a Supreme Court chamber packed with lawyers who may be affected by the outcome, but the justices appeared to be seeking a more narrow solution to the proliferation of patents. While voicing skepticism about the specific patent in question, which uses a computer to safeguard complex financial settlements, the justices repeatedly sought examples of what types of patents would remain legitimate if they impose new limits.
(Source: USA Today, 2014-03-31) Read the full article
Supreme Court Rules Taxes Owed on Severance Payments
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that taxes are due for Social Security and Medicare on severance packages paid to workers who are laid off involuntarily, overturning a lower court ruling that could have led to a wave of payroll tax refund requests from U.S. businesses. In a win for the Obama administration and the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, the court voted 8-0 that Quality Stores, a defunct retailer, and its employees are not entitled to tax refunds totaling about $1 million.
(Source: Reuters, 2014-03-25) Read the full article
U.S. Sees Biggest Share of IPO Deals Since 2000
The U.S. is still accounting for an even bigger share of IPO traffic, in terms of number of deals. So far in 2014, the U.S. has accounted for 28 percent of IPOs, or 60 out of 211 deals globally, Dealogic says, the U.S.'s best share since 2000.
(Source: The Wall Street Journal, 2014-03-25) Read the full article
Venture Capital Firms Reaping Rewards from Vibrant IPO Market
Venture capital firms, already reveling in the most vibrant initial public offering market in more than half a decade, are being further propelled by a spate of billion-dollar acquisitions. The recent success of venture capital is bringing increased competition from hedge funds, private-equity firms and mutual funds, which are looking for ways to profit from the technology shifts under way in mobile, cloud computing and connected devices.
(Source: Financial Advisor, 2014-03-27) Read the full article
Private Equity-Backed M&A Down by Almost One-Third Over Year
Buyout firms are finding it harder to take part in mergers and acquisitions as the lure of stronger equity markets persuades more funds seeking to exit assets to try their luck with a public share sale or turn to cash-rich corporate buyers. Private equity-backed mergers and acquisitions (M&A) fell by almost a third to $55.2 billion from a year ago, Thomson Reuters quarterly data showed.
(Source: Reuters, 2014-03-27) Read the full article
Silicon Valley, Universities Battle Over Patent "Fee Shifting"
As Senate staffers have quietly met behind closed doors to hammer out a compromise on patent troll legislation, an ongoing dispute between tech companies and patent holders such as universities about who pays the legal fees incurred by the prevailing party in patent litigation has escalated into a significant hurdle.
(Source: re/code, 2014-03-23) Read the full article
Venture Capitalists Show Affinity for Big-Data Frameworks
Can an open-source framework for the storage and large-scale processing of data on clusters of commodity hardware help an organization save the millions of dollars it spends on traditional databases? Venture capitalists believe so, as they are pouring money into tech startups that will enable that change.
(Source:, 2014-03-27) Read the full article
Many Early-Stage Start-Ups Still Struggle to Get Funding
Young companies thinking they might be worth billions may need a reality check. Despite the hubbub over select startups such as WhatsApp, the mobile-messaging app bought by Facebook for $19 billion, first-round valuations for U.S. startups fell last year, data show, even as later-round valuations surpassed levels of the dot-com era.
(Source: The Wall Street Journal, 2014-03-19) Read the full article
Female Entrepreneurs Running into Venture Capital Roadblocks
If you're a female entrepreneur looking for venture capital, a new study suggests you may want to find your own Remington Steele -- a good-looking guy to be your front man -- at least if you want male investors to finance your company. This ground-breaking research -- conducted by scholars from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Harvard and the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania and published in the Feb. 20 edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States -- supports what women entrepreneurs have long felt, that they have a much harder time getting money just because they're female.
(Source: Daily Comet, 2014-03-27) Read the full article
Small Business Development Centers Help Entrepreneurs Grow
About 1,000 small-business development centers nationwide provide free consulting, low-cost workshops and resources to small businesses, the self-employed, and high-growth start-ups. The centers -- often at colleges, universities or state economic development agencies -- help create jobs, start businesses and unleash small-business capital.
(Source: USA Today, 2014-03-21) Read the full article
Swimming in "Other Waters" - Does EPA's New Proposed Rule on Waters of the United States Provide Predictability and Consistency to Your Industry?

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Army Corps) are publishing for public comment a proposed rule defining the scope of waters protected under the Clean Water Act (CWA) in light of recent Supreme Court cases that muddied the waters, literally and figuratively, about what is a waterbody under the CWA. Read full post online.



Securities and Exchange Commission Announces Self-Reporting Initiative for Issuers and Underwriters of Municipal Securities

The SEC Enforcement Division recently announced the “Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation Initiative” (the MCDC Initiative). The main purpose of the MCDC Initiative is to encourage issuers (or “obligors” on conduit bonds) and/or underwriters of municipal securities to self-report certain materially inaccurate statements in bond offering documents. Specifically, the MCDC Initiative focuses on incorrect statements regarding prior compliance with continuing disclosure obligations, as detailed in SEC Rule 15c2-12. Read full article online.



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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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