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MORRISON & FOERSTER ELECTS 15 PARTNERS

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MORRISON & FOERSTER ELECTS 15 PARTNERS

Morrison & Foerster, a leading global law firm, is pleased to announce the election of 15 lawyers to the firm’s partnership. The class of 2017 includes individuals from 11 practice groups across 11 offices in the U.S., Europe, and Asia. The promotions became effective on January 1, 2017.

“I’m extremely proud to welcome this highly accomplished group of lawyers to the partnership,” said Morrison & Foerster chair Larren M. Nashelsky. “Through their hard work, leadership abilities, and dedication to client service, they have demonstrated a commitment to our clients and the firm. I’m confident they will continue to make many valuable contributions to the firm in the years to come.”

The following lawyers have been elected partners:

Gemma Anderson, a member of the Litigation Department, is based in the London office. She is a commercial litigator specializing in complex contractual and financial matters, technology disputes, and contentious insolvency and restructuring issues. She regularly advises clients in the U.S., Europe, Asia, and Australasia on pre-litigation strategy and commercial litigation and arbitration matters with an English law nexus. Ms. Anderson has represented clients in relation to large-scale commercial litigation in the English Commercial Court, Chancery Division, and Court of Appeal. She also has extensive experience of arbitration, including international and domestic arbitrations under both institutional and ad hoc rules. Ms. Anderson is dual qualified in England & Wales and New Zealand. She graduated from the University of Auckland with Bachelors of Law and Commerce, and holds an LL.M. from the University of Cambridge.

Mori Inada, a member of the Real Estate Practice Group, is based in the Tokyo office. Mr. Inada’s practice focuses on financing and real estate transactions, with particular expertise in real estate non-recourse finance, LBO finance, and other structured finance and real estate transactions such as development, acquisitions, dispositions, and leasing for commercial and residential properties. He has represented a range of international and domestic clients including private investment funds and commercial banks. His practice also focuses on advising clients on the Financial Instruments and Exchange Law and Act on Securitization of Assets (TMK Law) as well as other financial regulations. Mr. Inada is a member of the Daini Tokyo Bar Association admitted to practice in Japan (Bengoshi). He earned his J.D. from the Legal Training and Research Institute of Japan, and his LL.M. and LL.B. from Waseda University. Mr. Inada practices with Ito & Mitomi, registered associated offices of Morrison & Foerster in Japan.

Amit Kataria, a member of the Corporate Department, is based in the Hong Kong office. Mr. Kataria has experience advising on mergers and acquisitions transactions, private equity investments, securities offerings, and a broad range of transactional and corporate advisory matters. He represents corporates, financial sponsors, and their portfolio companies in domestic and cross-border mergers and acquisitions across a wide range of industries, including financial services, technology, hospitality, insurance, logistics, manufacturing, real estate, and pharmaceuticals. Mr. Kataria also focuses on advising regional and international strategic acquirers and financial investors on Indian inbound and outbound transactions. He has also regularly advised clients on various litigation, internal investigation, and enforcement matters related to India. Mr. Kataria earned his LL.B. from University of Delhi and his LL.M. from Columbia Law School.

Jessica Kaufman, a member of the Financial Services Litigation Practice Group, is based in the New York office. Her practice focuses on complex civil litigation, with an emphasis on class action, financial services litigation and enforcement, and commercial disputes. Recent representative matters include the defense of a leading marketplace lender in a putative nationwide class action under state usury laws; a major consumer products company in multi-district antitrust litigation; a professional services firm in a malpractice action; a lingerie company facing consumer protection claims, including claims of false advertising; and financial institutions facing claims under the federal and state contract and antitrust laws, RICO Act, Right to Financial Privacy Act, and state unfair and deceptive practices statutes. She also regularly advises and represents clients in complex commercial disputes. Ms. Kaufman earned her J.D. from New York University School of Law.

Kenichi Ko, a member of the Corporate Department, is based in the Tokyo office. Mr. Ko provides advice on a wide range of legal matters with an emphasis on mergers and acquisitions, reorganizations, joint ventures and alliances, matters related to corporate law and securities law, and litigation matters. He is a member of the Daini Tokyo Bar Association admitted to practice in Japan (Bengoshi). Mr. Ko graduated from the Legal Training and Research Institute of Japan and earned his LL.M. from the University of Southern California. He practices with Ito & Mitomi, registered associated offices of Morrison & Foerster in Japan.

Mike Krigbaum, a member of the Corporate Department, is based in the Palo Alto office. His practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions and venture capital transactions, as well as emerging company counseling. Mr. Krigbaum’s M&A experience includes private and public acquisitions of technology and life sciences companies on both the buy-side and target-side. His expertise includes domestic and cross-border deal structuring and mechanics relating to stock and asset purchases, mergers, divestitures, tender offers, joint ventures, spinoffs, and restructurings. Mr. Krigbaum also represents a number of venture capital firms, corporate venture capital divisions, and emerging companies, both in the technology and life science industries, with respect to venture capital transactions, negotiations, and structuring, as well as general emerging company counseling. Mr. Krigbaum earned his J.D. from Santa Clara University School of Law.

Matthew Lau, a member of the Tax Department, is based in the Hong Kong office. His practice focuses on the tax structuring aspects of cross-border mergers and acquisitions and corporate restructurings, particularly in the United States, China, Japan, and the rest of the Asia-Pacific region. He also regularly advises U.S. and Asia-based fund sponsors and institutional investors on tax issues related to the formation of, and investments in, private equity funds, real estate funds, hedge funds, co-investment vehicles, and other alternative investment products. Mr. Lau has represented multinational corporations and funds in acquisitions and restructuring transactions across more than 30 jurisdictions. He received his J.D. from Columbia Law School.

Natalie Fleming Nolen, a member of the Commercial Litigation Practice Group, is based in the Washington, D.C. office. Her practice focuses on complex civil litigation with an emphasis on antitrust litigation, commercial litigation, and financial services litigation. Recent representative matters include the defense of a financial institution in a large multi-district antitrust litigation; defense of a company against allegations of deceptive marketing; and representing a large company that was being investigated by regulatory authorities. Ms. Fleming Nolen earned her J.D. from Harvard Law School.

Julie O’Neill, a member of the Privacy and Data Security Practice Group, is based in the Washington, D.C. office. Ms. O’Neill provides clients with practical solutions to compliance challenges around a wide variety of both online and offline privacy issues, including online and offline tracking, interest-based advertising, geo-targeting and other mobile tracking, personalization, and cross-device tracking. Ms. O’Neill also creates compliance programs for clients’ use of a wide variety of channels for communicating with and marketing to consumers in the U.S. and around the world. She works with clients to develop their social media strategies and to clear their social media content. Ms. O’Neill also reviews advertising in both traditional and new media for compliance with applicable laws, including Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Act and various FTC rules and guides. As a former FTC staff attorney, Ms. O’Neill regularly defends companies in investigations by the FTC and before data protection authorities around the world. She earned her J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center.

Julie Park, a member of the Product Liability Practice Group, is based in the San Diego office. Ms. Park handles a wide range of product issues for pharmaceutical, medical device, and consumer product manufacturers. She represents clients in multi-district and multi jurisdictional proceedings in product liability and consumer class action cases. She also advises clients on product liability-related issues, including evaluating and recommending warnings; assessing compliance with federal, state, and industry standards (including the Food Drug & Cosmetic Act, ANSI, and the Consumer Product Safety Act); guiding clients through product recalls; and conducting risk assessments. Ms. Park earned her J.D. from Harvard Law School.

Tina Reynolds, a member of the Government Contracts and Public Procurement Practice Group, is based in the Northern Virginia office. She represents a wide variety of government contractors including information technology, defense, biotechnology, and pharmaceutical companies, with a focus on general contract counseling, compliance, and litigation. Her litigation experience includes government contracts claims litigation in federal courts and before boards of contract appeals, bid protests before the Government Accountability Office and the Court of Federal Claims, and complex disputes in federal courts, including civil fraud and False Claims Act litigation. She has extensive experience with internal investigations, as well as government ethics, intellectual property, and cybersecurity-related matters. Ms. Reynolds earned her J.D. from the University of North Carolina.

Nathan Sabri, a member of the Intellectual Property Litigation Practice Group, is based in the San Francisco office. Mr. Sabri focuses his practice on patent and copyright litigation, and has experience litigating in state courts and federal courts throughout the country.  He also has experience managing global strategy in large cases spanning multiple jurisdictions. His matters have included advice and litigation involving subject matters such as antibody development, noninvasive prenatal diagnostics, surgical robotics, smartphones, email software, and graphical user interfaces. He received his J.D. from the University of California, Davis School of Law.

Tyler Sewell, a member of the Corporate Department, is based in the Denver office. He focuses his practice on advising clients in M&A and other complex corporate transactions. Mr. Sewell has advised clients in various transaction structures including leveraged acquisitions, divestitures, asset acquisitions, stock acquisitions, mergers, auction transactions, and cross-border transactions. He has worked with domestic and foreign companies in a variety of industries including Internet, consumer, hardware, semiconductor, e-commerce, and health care verticals. Mr. Sewell received his J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School.

Alfredo B. D. Silva, a member of the Corporate Department, is based in the San Francisco office. Mr. Silva represents public and private companies and investors in a broad range of corporate and securities law matters. His practice includes initial public offerings, primary and secondary offerings, private placements, preferred stock financings, and public and private mergers and acquisitions. In his public company practice, Mr. Silva also counsels issuers on corporate governance issues, compliance with the U.S. federal securities laws, and compliance with the listing standards of Nasdaq and the New York Stock Exchange. In his private company practice, Mr. Silva has led venture financing, late-stage financing, strategic investment, and impact investment transactions for companies in a wide variety of industries. He received his J.D. degree from Yale Law School.

Christiane Stuetzle, a member of the Technology Transactions Practice Group, is based in the Berlin office. She is co-chair of the firm’s Global Film & Entertainment Practice Group and a Certified Specialist for Copyright and Media Law, Arbitrator on the International Arbitration Panel of the IFTA (Independent Film & Television Alliance). Ms. Stuetzle’s practice focuses on transactional matters in the field of film and entertainment, as well as legal and strategic advice and lobbying support at all stages of the development, financing, production, and distribution of audiovisual products, mainly for U.S.-based clients doing business in Germany. She has deep industry knowledge and experience aligning standards when handling matters of U.S. and other international clients doing business in Germany. Ms. Stuetzle is the founder and organizer of the Berlin office’s annual film production and financing panel and reception for high-ranking individuals from the international film community, held during the Berlin Film Festival since 2002. She has published various articles on media law topics and is co-author of a film and media law handbook. She earned her First State Exam from the University of Passau and her Second State Exam from Higher Regional Court of Dresden.

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Investing into a more sustainable future: changing businesses from the inside out

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Investing into a more sustainable future: changing businesses from the inside out 1

By Shawn Welch, Vice President and General Manager of Hi-Cone Worldwide

As industries across the world are facing unprecedented uncertainty and anticipating the economic implications of the current health crisis, business leaders have the unique opportunity to seize the chance to make lasting, positive changes and re-interpret the business challenges in a positive way – without forgetting or minimising the toll the pandemic has taken. When trying to identify a way forward, the future must be sustainable. We must take this opportunity to find a more sustainable way for businesses and manufacturers to survive.

Environmental and economic concern have only increased the gap on what consumers want – more sustainability – and how much progress businesses can make without risking their viability. However, rather than giving up on ambitious goals, maybe we need to reframe the way we look at sustainability. So far, businesses have tended to react to consumer demands, often without looking into the long-term implications and research-based due diligence one would expect. Therefore, now is the right time to be more deliberate: to continue on the path towards a truly sustainable ‘new normal’, businesses need to consider the bottom line impact more than ever before and truly invest in changing their business models to become more sustainable.

Shawn Welch

Shawn Welch

To meet the UN’s ambitious 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, businesses ultimately must thrive – working towards establishing a circular economy remains crucial. Instead of a linear ‘extract, use, dispose’ approach, materials need to be respected and re-used as many times as possible, which is only possible if products are designed for re-use, re-manufacturing, repair or restarting. After all, any and all consumption comes at a price. In manufacturing, processes draw on resources to produce items that, once they have served their purpose, become surplus to requirements. Yet, to ignore this is to take an incomplete view of sustainability: instead, materials are extracted from waste to re-enter production processes. Reuse and recycling initiatives are central to this and great strides have been made in raising awareness of this need. The full environmental cost of production and consumption includes the choice of materials themselves but also the level of carbon emissions generated, and energy consumed.

Once products and processes have redesigned for a circular approach, this initial investment will often easily be recouped, especially if we start with looking at the facts when starting this crucial process. To make the Circular Economy a focus for any business very often means changing the business model. Here, investing in research and development is vital. In the packaging industry, for example, we are seeing that customers and consumers are increasingly more focused on sustainability, and that surprising changes can unlock societal and business value. Through minimising a product’s carbon footprint or making recycling easier for consumers, lifecycle-assessment-based product redesigns or using recycled plastics instead of larger quantities of cardboard, companies are identifying these more creative options and enjoying the long-lasting benefits that come with implementing them. In any case, leadership is key. A research-driven approach gets everyone on-board and seeing management committing to these goals as part of business plans helps cement these. At a recent Reuters Responsible Business Summit virtual panel, I was part of an interesting conversation. Here, Yolanda Malone, Vice President Global R&D Snacks PKG, PepsiCo, discussed how leaders have to drive the behaviours within the organisation and the tone for the culture. She explained that her sustainable plastics vision is a world where plastics never become waste. Only through putting the mantra of “reduce, recycle, rethink and reinvent” can we bring circular products to consumer. She stressed that, if we don’t reinvent, we will fall back into old habits.

Of course, consumer behaviours play a part and the easier the solution, the more likely consumers will get behind it. End consumers are becoming increasingly conscious of packaging. So, to be truly circular, we need to take into account the entire lifecycle. Mindset change needs to continue to happen. Consumers need to be clear about what their choices are. To achieve this, we must change our businesses from the inside out, allowing for close collaboration inside and outside of our organisations. Other organisations – such as governments and recycling organisations – will need to be involved in businesses’ efforts, multiplying the impact our investments will have. We must address all aspects of sustainability and, for example, have better recycling, a focus on infrastructure and emphasis on consumer education. To recover, reuse and recycle, the R&D must be in place and dedicated to sustainability. Partnerships are important as we, as other leading global companies realise, cannot do this alone. Collaboration is key when investing in a more sustainable, more Circular, future.

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Securing Information Throughout the Supply Chain – Preventing Supplier Vulnerabilities 

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Securing Information Throughout the Supply Chain – Preventing Supplier Vulnerabilities  2

By Adam Strange, Data Classification Specialist, HelpSystems 

The financial services sector is experiencing extreme disruption coupled with rapid innovation as established institutions strive to become more agile and meet evolving customer demand. At the same time, new market entrants compete fiercely for customers. Increasing operational flexibility, through the deployment of cloud infrastructure or via digital transformation initiatives, is critical for future competitiveness but it has also driven regulatory and security challenges, particularly around working with suppliers.

That said, the benefits of a diverse, interconnected supply chain are compelling: agility, speed, and cost reduction all weigh on the positive side of the equation, prompting financial institutions to pursue close, collaborative relationships with suppliers, often numbering in the hundreds or thousands.

Weakness in the supply chain

On the negative side is the increased cyber threat when enterprises expose their networks to their supply chain. In our modern interconnected digital ecosystems, most financial organisations have many supply chain dependencies and it only takes one of these to have cybersecurity vulnerabilities to bring a business to its knees.

As a result, breaches originating in third parties are common and costly – a Ponemon Institute/IBM study found that breaches being caused by a third party was the top factor that amplified the cost of a breach, adding an average of $370,000 to the breach cost.

Concern around the supply chain was also evidenced in a recent report we have just issued, whereby we interviewed 250 CISOs and CIOs from financial institutions about the cybersecurity challenges they face and nearly half (46%) said that cybersecurity weaknesses in the supply chain had the biggest potential to cause the most damage in the next 12 months.

But sharing information with suppliers is essential for the supply chain to function. Most financial services organisations go to great lengths to secure intellectual property, personally identifiable information (PII) and other sensitive data internally, yet when this information is shared across the supply chain, does it get the same robust attention?

Further amplified by COVID-19

Financial service organisations have always been a key target for cyber attacks.  Our research showed that since COVID-19 hit, the risk has elevated further, with 45% of the respondents seeing increased cybersecurity attacks during this period. Likewise, hackers are rejecting frontal assaults on well-defended walls in favour of infiltrating networks via vulnerabilities in suppliers.

But financial services organisations must maintain reputations and ensure customer trust. Firms are keen to demonstrate that they are protecting customer assets, providing an ultra-reliable service and working with trustworthy partners. So, what can they do to better protect their supplier ecosystem?

At the very least, they need to ensure basic controls are implemented around their suppliers’ IT infrastructure.  For example, they must ensure suppliers maintain a secure infrastructure with a minimum of Cyber Essentials or the equivalent US CIS certification controls. Cyber Essentials defines a set of controls which, when implemented, provide organisations with basic protection from the most prevalent forms of threats, focusing on threats which require low levels of attacker skill, and which are widely available online.

Likewise, they need to ensure good information management controls are in place and this begins with accurate information/data classification. After all, how can you apply appropriate controls to your information unless you know what it is and where it is?

How ISO27001 helps organisations put in place a data classification process

The international standard on information security, ISO27001, describes the basic ingredients for data classification to ensure the data receives the appropriate level of protection in accordance with its importance to the organisation. It comprises three basic elements:

  • Classification of data – in terms of legal requirements, value, criticality and sensitivity to unauthorised disclosure or modification.
  • Labelling of data – an appropriate set of procedures for information labelling should be developed and implemented in accordance with the organisation’s information classification scheme.
  • Handling of assets – procedures for the handling of assets developed and implemented in accordance with the organisation’s information classification scheme.

Adoption of this methodology will help financial services organisations and their supply chain take a more data-centric information security approach. However, there are essentially four key stages for implementing a data risk assurance supply chain approach and these are:

 1. Approval – in organisations with complex supply chains senior management, vendor management, procurement and information security will all need to support a robust risk-based information management approach. Details of previous incidents and their impact alongside the business benefits will be essential to gain stakeholder buy in.

 2. Preparation – Organisations should start with Tier 1 suppliers and initially identify the contracts with the highest business impact/risk. They should identify and record information repositories and the data that they contain together with the responsible business owners. Define a business taxonomy based on information categories of that data and include supply chain factors such as what information categories are shared.

For example, they need to understand the business impact of compromise against each of the information categories. Have any suppliers suffered security incidents? What assurance mechanisms are in place? Once all this information is collated the organisation can create a data classification policy and define a set of controls for each data category.

 3. Discovery – Select each data category and identify the associated contracts. Then prioritise the data category based on the risk assessment and verify that the data security controls and arrangements for each data category and contract meet the overall requirements. Once complete, hand over the contract for inclusion in the vendor management cycle.

4. Embed process – the overall objective is to embed information risk management into the procurement lifecycle from start to finish. Therefore, whenever a new contract is created there are a number of actions required which embed data risk at each stage of the bid, tender, procurement, evaluation, implementation and termination phases of the contract.

To summarise, organisations should start by researching the information risk and security frameworks such as ISO27001 and others. They should then focus on defining their business taxonomy and data categories together with the business impact of compromise to help develop a data classification scheme. Finally, they should implement the data classification scheme and embed data risk management into the procurement lifecycle processes from start to finish. By effectively embedding data risk management and categorisation into their procurement and vendor management processes, they are preventing their suppliers’ vulnerabilities becoming their own and are more effectively securing data in the supply chain.

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Deloitte: Middle East organizations need to rethink their workforce in the wake of COVID-19

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Deloitte: Middle East organizations need to rethink their workforce in the wake of COVID-19 3

Organizations in the Middle East have had to take immediate actions in reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic, such as shifting to remote and virtual work, implementing new ways of working and redirecting the workforce on critical activities. According to Deloitte’s 10th annual 2020 Middle East Human Capital Trends report, “The social enterprise at work: Paradox as a path forward,” organizations now need to think about how to sustain these actions by embedding them into their organizational culture.

“COVID-19 has created a clarifying moment for work and the workforce. Organizations that expand their focus on worker well-being, from programs adjacent to work to designing well-being into the work itself, will help their workers not only feel their best but perform at their best. Doing so will strengthen the tie between well-being and organizational outcomes, drive meaningful work, and foster a greater sense of belonging overall,” said Ghassan Turqieh, Consulting Partner, Human Capital, Deloitte Middle East.

According to the Deloitte report, many organizations in the Middle East made quick arrangements to engage with employees in the wake of the pandemic through frequent communications, multiple webinars where senior leaders addressed employee concerns, virtual employee events, manager check-ins, periodic calls and other targeted interactions with the workforce.

The report also discussed how UAE and KSA governments have reexamined work policies and practices, amended regulations and introduced COVID-19 initiatives to support companies and the workforce in the public and private sectors. Flexible and remote working, team-building and engagement activities, well-ness programs, recognition awards and modern workspaces are among the many things that are now adding to the employee experience.

Key findings from the Deloitte global report include:

  • Only 17% of respondents are making significant investments in reskilling to support their AI strategy with only 12% using AI primarily to replace workers;
  • 27% of respondents have clear policies and practices to manage the ethical challenges resulting from the future of work despite 85% of respondents saying the future of work raises ethical challenges;
  • Three-quarters of leaders are expecting to source new skills and capabilities through reskilling, but only 45% are rewarding workers for the development of new skills; and
  • Only 45% of respondents are prepared or very prepared to take advantage of the alternative workforce to access key capabilities despite gig workers being likely to comprise 43% of the U.S. workforce this year according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

“Worker well-being is a top priority today, and similarly to the rest of the world, companies in the Middle East are focusing their efforts to redesign work around well-being by understanding workforce well-being needs,” said Rania Abu Shukur, Director, Human Capital, Consulting, Deloitte Middle East.

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