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MintzTech Connect Industry News - September 2017

September 15, 2017 | Article | By Daniel DeWolf, Samuel Asher Effron

Words are very powerful and the language we use often frames a discussion. For example, the term “shareholder activist” sounds like a consumer friendly person who has everyone’s best interests at heart, when in fact the term “shareholder activist” is a phrase invented to cast corporate raiders in a better light. Such semantic gamesmanship often masks the reality of a particular situation.

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MintzTech Innovator Profile: quip

September 15, 2017 | Article | By Daniel DeWolf, Samuel Asher Effron

Since its beginnings in early 2015, quip, the Brooklyn-based dental start-up co-founded by former industrial product designers Simon Enever and Bill May, has swiftly reinvented the archaic dental healthcare industry. From its superbly designed electric toothbrushes to its subscription toothbrush-head and toothpaste replacement service, and its “dental connect” digital platform for customers and dental professionals, quip has made it easier, more enjoyable, and more affordable for customers to keep their smiles bright and healthy. For these achievements, quip has received unprecedented dental industry and press coverage, including recognition as one of TIME Magazine’s 25 Best Inventions of 2016, a place on the O, The Oprah Magazine “O-List,” and a 2016 GQ Grooming Award. With such accolades and its robust social media following, quip is revolutionizing the way people around the world approach oral healthcare.

SAFEs: The (Not So) Simple Agreement for (Potential) Future Equity

September 7, 2017 | Alert | By Brian Novell, Daniel DeWolf

Historically, most startup companies were funded either by the offering of equity or by loans in the form of convertible promissory notes. Recently, however, there have been some hybrid instruments created to fund startups.

How Insurtechs Maximize Profits and Competitive Advantage

June 21, 2017 | Advisory | By Heidi Lawson

The potential to disrupt the historic insurance industry model has made insurtech one of the hottest new areas of innovation and investment, with entrepreneurs developing technologies at a breakneck pace and venture capital firms seeking to put investment dollars behind an exciting range of new products and services aimed at efficiencies and cost savings.
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MintzTech Innovator Profile: Kinnos, Inc.

June 15, 2017 | Article | By Daniel DeWolf, Samuel Asher Effron

Kinnos Inc. is a New York-based company that is raising the standard of infectious disease decontamination to protect healthcare workers, patients, and the general public. Their first product, Highlight®, is an additive for disinfectants that eliminates human error and allows even untrained end-users, such as healthcare workers, housekeeping staff, and biosafety personnel, to immediately use disinfectants effectively.

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MintzTech Connect Industry News - June 2017

June 15, 2017 | Article | By Daniel DeWolf, Samuel Asher Effron

The current edition of MintzTech Connect includes an article relating to investing in hot secondary securities and an article on some of the pitfalls in our “gig economy” under New York law when hiring independent contractors. We also highlight a very cool young company called Kinnos, which is raising the standard of infectious disease decontamination to protect healthcare workers, patients, and the general public.

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U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission member Michael Piwowar on Tuesday urged investors to be wary of the pitfalls of so-called SAFE investments — a sophisticated financing instrument for startup companies — that are increasingly being marketed to the broader retail investing public.

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Seniority Matters

June 15, 2017 | Article | By Daniel DeWolf

There is little doubt that activity in the trading of secondary shares of private companies remains robust. Private companies are staying private longer and there seems to be an unlimited demand to buy into the newest “Unicorn” anointed each week. As the market for secondary shares stays strong, valuations seem not to matter much to most buyers.
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The Gig Economy, Independent Contractors, and New York Law

June 7, 2017 | Article | By Kaitlin Zellner

Creating a business in the gig economy (on-demand work) is advantageous for startups because when they are able to classify their workers as independent contractors, the startups can avoid paying benefits, payroll taxes, unemployment insurance, workers’ compensation, and disability. Startups, however, need to carefully classify their workers as misclassification can lead to investigations, penalties, and lawsuits, which are becoming increasingly common.

Insurtech: 5 Questions, More Profit

April 28, 2017 | Advisory | By Heidi Lawson, Gregory Hoffnagle, Jacquelyn Burke

Decisions you make when founding and/or investing in an insurtech venture can dictate your regulatory obligations, tax liability, operational structure and, ultimately, profitability. Here are five seemingly simple questions to ask when launching an insurtech venture:
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MintzTech Innovator Profile: BetterPT

March 15, 2017 | Article | By Daniel DeWolf, Samuel Asher Effron

Recognizing that physical therapy will always be in demand, Dr. Stephen Fealy MD, a leading orthopedic surgeon at the Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS), and Greg Peters, a leading health and fitness expert, joined forces to make the overall physical therapy industry and experience more effective and efficient, thus BetterPT was conceived.

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MintzTech Connect Industry News - March 2017

March 15, 2017 | Article | By Daniel DeWolf, Samuel Asher Effron

This issue includes two articles that challenge conventional thinking. The first, called “Software is Still Patent Eligible,” makes the case that software patents can still be obtained. IP generally accretes in value over time and is critically important to the value proposition of many enterprises. While some commentators believe that software patents are no longer worth trying to obtain, we disagree. The second article is about a novel way to construct a more balanced approach to the share ownership of founders and investors. People often forget that the NVCA (National Venture Capital Association) forms are created by counsel to the venture capital industry and as such are generally biased in favor of the investor. Our article proposes a novel solution to mitigate this bias and the solution is both simple and equitable.

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MintzTech Connect Industry News - December 2016

December 15, 2016 | Article | By Daniel DeWolf, Samuel Asher Effron

Our client, Benji Cohen, was running an Energy Markets Division at Macquarie when he had a lightbulb moment. Everywhere he looked valuation models were being put together in the most laborious way imaginable, with Excel tables containing hundreds of columns and thousands of rows. Benji saw a real point of pain in the marketplace and acted on it. Thus, in 2012, Benji created T-REX as a subscription-based, SaaS, FinTech platform that could compress the time for the valuation process to make the process 50 times faster and more accurate as well. And, the focus would be in a growing niche — the renewable energy sector. Benji was able to see the size of the opportunity, the point of pain in the marketplace, and the solution. With much hard work and great execution, T-REX is now a leader in this part of the FinTech space. In this edition of TechConnect, we highlight T-REX in our Innovator Profile.
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MintzTech Innovator Profile: T-REX

December 15, 2016 | Article | By Daniel DeWolf, Samuel Asher Effron

Founded in 2012 and headquartered in New York City, T-REX’s secure, enterprise SaaS-based analytics, risk, and portfolio management platform standardizes and provides transparency to the complex structured products evaluation process, increasing liquidity and creating significant investment opportunities for the hundreds of billions of dollars of capital across various esoteric, non-commoditized asset classes.

Revised Rule 504: Another Tool in the Toolkit to Raise Capital

December 1, 2016 | Alert | By Daniel DeWolf, Brian Novell

If there is one common theme that entrepreneurs tend to have, it is fire – meaning, many entrepreneurs are passionate about an exciting idea that they seek to turn into a business. However, entrepreneurs often quickly realize that, in order to make their fire glow high and bright for the world to see, they need fuel – meaning, capital.
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MintzTech Industry Update: Entrepreneur Rule

September 15, 2016 | Article | By Douglas Hauer, Samuel Asher Effron

At MintzEdge, we are already thinking about how a recent immigration law development may help our clients grow their ventures. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently announced a new rule for entrepreneurs. If the rule becomes law, qualified entrepreneurs would be considered for parole (temporary permission to be in the United States) to jumpstart and build their businesses in the United States. The rule is a path-breaking proposal because it seeks to use and retrofit an existing immigration benefit called “parole” to meet the needs of entrepreneurs, who may otherwise be unable to secure a nonimmigrant visa such as an H-1B or E-2 visa.

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MintzTech Connect Industry News - September 2016

September 15, 2016 | Article | By Daniel DeWolf, Samuel Asher Effron

The world of raising capital for emerging companies has experienced a revolution. Prior to the enactment of the JOBS Act in 2012, raising capital for private companies was limited to offline communications and was dominated by professional venture capitalists; now the capital raising process has been democratized. Capital can be raised online directly by companies or through intermediaries. It can be accomplished by crowd sourcing to “accredited investors” or, in limited amounts, by crowdfunding to everyone. Additionally, companies can raise capital in an “IPO lite” manner by using the new Reg A+.

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MintzTech Innovator Profiles - Vidrovr

September 15, 2016 | Article | By Daniel DeWolf, Samuel Asher Effron

Vidrovr can index, search, and recommend video content in a cost-effective, automatic, and accurate manner. Vidrovr addresses three key market needs: 1. Domain and customer-specific automatic metadata generation for videos, 2. Video Content Management solutions that enable automatic placement and recommendation of video clips for across a company’s digital products, and 3. Automatically linking and sourcing visual social media content that is relevant to a particular video or online article before it is published. Vidrovr was recently named as one of the winners of the prestigious Publicis90 competition, which entails investment and mentorship from Publicis Groupe.

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Changing World of Raising Capital

September 15, 2016 | Article | By Daniel DeWolf, Megan Gates

The world of raising capital changed over the last several years. Offerings of securities generally used to fall into two main buckets: (i) private placements under the old Rule 506, or (ii) a public offering.
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FinTech Companies Face Big Privacy Challenges in 2016

September 15, 2016 | Article | By Natalie Prescott, Cynthia Larose

According to the FBI, “there are only two types of companies: those that have been hacked and those that will be.” It does not take an actual data breach, however, for a company to be liable for its data security practices. In March 2016, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) made this clear when it settled its first-ever data security enforcement action against an online payment processing company, Dwolla.
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