Manatt Adds Venture Capital Team in San Francisco

Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP, a multidisciplinary, integrated professional services firm, announced today that Richard McDerby has joined the firm as a venture capital and emerging companies partner in the firm’s San Francisco office. Accompanied by associate Christopher Dayans, he will work closely with renowned investor and healthcare venture advisor Lisa Suennen, who leads the firm’s digital and technology businesses and its venture capital fund. McDerby’s arrival comes just as Donna L. Wilson takes over as the firm’s new Chief Executive Officer and Managing Partner.     
McDerby’s practice spans the full array of corporate and commercial matters that midsize business and emerging growth companies encounter, including mergers and acquisitions, private equity and venture capital financing and business transactions, and outside general counsel services. He is skilled in advising startup and venture-backed companies through all stages of the complex and evolving life cycle, from formation and funding through sale and strategic buyers, and has acted for midsize companies in large, complex mergers and acquisitions.

“We are thrilled to continue growing our hybridized venture capital and emerging companies group with the addition of Rich,” said Wilson. “His legal background representing startups and emerging companies perfectly complements Lisa’s experience as a trusted advisor, allowing us to continue providing cutting-edge, holistic solutions for our current and future innovative clients.”

Also joining the firm’s venture capital and emerging companies group is McDerby’s former colleague Christopher Dayans. He will work closely with McDerby and Suennen to represent private companies and entrepreneurs in venture finance matters. Dayans brings experience in counseling senior management teams in sales transactions and advising technology clients in private placement offerings. Working in tandem with Suennen, who has more than 20 years of experience as a venture capitalist, the broader group will be further strengthened in providing the full suite of legal and consulting services to venture capitalists and startups throughout every stage of a company’s life cycle.

“The chance to join Manatt and work alongside Lisa Suennen is an incredibly exciting opportunity,” said McDerby. “I am eager to continue building my practice at a firm that epitomizes the same innovative DNA that my clients embody. Manatt’s unique consulting and legal model is unmatched in the market, and I’m thrilled to join such a talented team.”

McDerby earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of New Brunswick and his J.D. from the Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University.


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