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EVENT RECORDING: Legal Considerations for Blockchain Innovations and ICOs

January 30, 2018

IP Protection and Accelerated Capital Formation in the Emerging Blockchain Driven Economy

On Tuesday, January 30, 2018, Giovanna Fessenden, Of Counsel at Hamilton Brook Smith Reynolds and Stephen Galebach of Galebach Law presented on the "Legal Considerations for Blockchain Innovations and ICOs."  

Startups, developers and investors took notice over the past year as ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings) emerged at center stage as a novel, accelerated path of capital formation in the context of the rapidly growing blockchain economy.  ICOs are creating considerable momentum in the blockchain innovation wave.  This year alone, companies have raised approximately $1.5 billion using an ICO or similar token based fundraising scheme.  Will your company benefit from an ICO?  The presentation covered how new blockchain technology may be optimally designed to:

(a) create value in innovative ways that are ripe for IP protection;
(b) enable monetization and capital formation via token sales and other means; and
(c) minimize risk in the complex regulatory environment of US securities and commodity futures law, as well as regulatory environments in other jurisdictions worldwide.    

The presentation covered how new blockchain technology may be optimally designed and documented for IP protection.

Giovanna Fessenden has expertise in protecting blockchain innovations for her clients.  She discussed how a company that may be considering an ICO can obtain a solid foundation for its intellectual property rights.  Giovanna also delved into what makes a strong technical white paper that details the company's technology and innovations.  She also discussed some of the intellectual property risks/benefits for deploying blockchain innovations. 

Stephen Galebach advised a recently completed ICO that featured the first known published legal opinion letter on the inapplicability of the securities laws to the particular tokens being sold.  Stephen spoke about the Supreme Court’s Howey test as applied to real world examples to determine whether an ICO represents an offering of securities and thus falls under SEC regulatory jurisdiction. 

Attendees at this event will learned about:

  • What are the IP strategies for protecting blockchain innovations?
  • What are the potential open source licensing issues for decentralized apps using the major blockchain platforms?
  • What alternative paths are possible for monetization of new blockchain developments?
  • How can a company benefit from an ICO or blockchain technology?
  • Is an ICO worthwhile to your company?
  • When does an ICO fall within SEC regulation?