Colorado life sciences companies raise a record $2.4 billion in funding at the opening
To deepen its relationships with Colorado's booming life sciences market, US law firm Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati will open an office in Boulder.
Vern Norviel and Tony Jeffries will split their time between California and Colorado following the launch of the new office, which is scheduled to open in the first quarter of 2022. Six associates and staff professionals will work with Norviel and Jeffries in Boulder.
Founded in Utah in November 2021 with the help of a partner from Holland & Hart and Utah Supreme Court justice Deno Himonas, Wilson Sonsini has now opened its second office in the state in the last three months.
With clients across a broad spectrum of areas like drug discovery, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals and health services, Wilson Sonsini said it already has a significant presence in the Boulder life sciences market.
Edgewise Therapeutics, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company based in Boulder, filed for its IPO in March 2021 and Foresight Diagnostics, a diagnostics company based in Aurora, filed for its Series A financing round in June 2021, which closed at $12.5m.
The firm's decision to open an office in Boulder validates Colorado's status as a magnet for disruptive companies that Wilson Sonsini has long represented. The Boulder office will prove valuable to the growing life sciences industry here, said Jake Chabon, CEO and co-founder of Foresight Diagnostics.
Recent research by the Colorado BioScience Association indicates that more than 700 life sciences companies are located in Colorado. The report said that the companies raised $2.4 billion in financing in 2021, crossing the $1 billion mark for the fifth consecutive year and raising twice as much as they did in 2020.
The firm's Norviel and Jeffries have worked together for more than two decades and have expertise in IPOs, M&A deals and venture capital financings.
With this Boulder office, our firm's life sciences group, which includes more than 275 attorneys, patent agents, scientific advisors and other professionals, will be able to create stronger local connections," Jeffries said.
As soon as the Boulder office opens, the firm will have 18 offices, 13 in the US and three in China, as well as one in Brussels and another in London.
The Texas legal market has become a hotbed for life sciences and technology firms as of late, attracting additional law firms to the region. Denver office of Crowell & Moring opened on October 2021 with three lawyers from Hogan Lovells and Armstrong Teasdale and a Salt Lake City office of Foley & Lardner opened in the same week with a group of lawyers from Maschoff Brennan. After Foran Glennon Palandech Ponzi & Rudloff's insurance lawyers moved to Clyde & Co in May, the firm also expanded into Phoenix, Denver and Las Vegas.
In an effort to strengthen its relationships with top local law schools like Brigham Young University's J. Reuben Clark School of Law and the University of Utah's S.J. Quinney College of Law, Chicago giant, Kirkland & Ellis also opened an office in Salt Lake City in 2021.