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Bethesda Business & Commercial Law Blog

Retailer sues real estate service company with possible fraud

Business managers expect transparency from companies they do business with. The ability to trust vendors, suppliers and partners keeps operations running smoothly. Not all companies live up to their obligations, however. And when trust is broken, financial loss can result.

Real-estate giant Colliers International is facing a lawsuit concerning alleged violations of trust. Representatives of Mattress Firm claim that top employees of Colliers plotted to persuade the retailer to buy more than 1,500 over-valued rental properties.

The most successful acquisition strategies

While acquisitions do not have any particular formula to guarantee success, there is no doubt that some are more successful than others. Each specific deal has its own strategy, rationale and principles.

It can be notoriously difficult to empirically analyze acquisition strategies. They can dramatically vary in size and type. There is also no objective methodology of classifying strategy. That said, there are some types of acquisitions that tend to be more successful than others. Here, we take a look at six of the most successful types of acquisitions.

Cisco purchases Gaithersburg-based BroadSoft for nearly $2B

BroadSoft, the Gaithersburg company that provides cloud-based telecommunications services for business across the country, has announced that it will be acquired in the next year by California-based Cisco. The price tag? Nearly two billion dollars.

BroadSoft has several key qualities that make this acquisition particularly attractive to a company such as Cisco. First, BroadSoft has reported healthy income over the past few years, including total revenue of over $340 million in 2016. The company, although headquartered in Gaithersburg, includes 13 offices outside of North America. It also has a history of partnerships with large communications companies such as Verizon.

Three tips to put together a smooth business succession plan

Putting together your own business is more than just a job. It represents more than a place to go to work, more than a career — it is a way of life. As such, planning for retirement or transitioning into another professional opportunity can be particularly difficult.

After all, you are leaving behind more than a simple job.

In-N-Out burger files suit to protect its brand

Competition in the fast casual restaurant market can be fierce, especially among burger chains.  SmashBurger and Shake Shack are highly motivated to claim market share previously held by McDonald’s and Burger King. So not only must their offerings be top notch, name branding is critical for establishing a following.

This probably explains why In-N-Out Burger jealously defends its brand names. It established trademarks for its offerings such as “Double Double” and “Triple Triple” nearly fifty years ago and arguably owes its popularity to the legal protections around its brands. 

The sound of silence as another crowd-funded company falls

Prior to crowd-funding, budding inventors and entrepreneurs had to seek out people with enough largesse to provide necessary financing to make their ideas come to life. The advent of GoFundMe and other websites helped alleviate much of the heavy lifting.

Kanoa, a Silicon Valley startup, generated a buzz in the crowded crowd-funding field. They touted Bluetooth-enabled, wireless earphones that provided high-tech features, specifically music changing in pace and volume during a workout. Users could also control the ambient sound levels, depending on their surroundings.

Mylan's cost of doing business

EpiPen is drug manufacturer Mylan’s best known product for not only its prominence in the pharmaceutical market, but the controversy surrounding the dramatic price increases over the years. In 2009, the wholesale price of two EpiPens was about $100. By May of 2016, the price rose approximately 500 percent to $609.

The manufacturer of the disposable, pre-filled injector that administers epinephrine to counteract allergic reactions faced a public relations firestorm over the cost jump. Their practices also launched a nationwide debate over soaring drug costs at Mylan and throughout the industry.

Three tips for turning a 'side hustle' into a startup company

The commercials for Uber implore people to get their “side hustle on” as if it is a new idea, but people have been working side jobs for decades. But more people today aspire to turn their side hustles into startup companies. Even more common, these startups are created while an entrepreneur is working full-time.

While there are a number of pitfalls that await the unwary, this post will offer a few helpful tips. 

Things to consider before accepting a severance offer

If you recently received a severance offer, your first instinct might be to take it and walk away without asking questions. On a certain level, this is a safe course of action — after all, you get to pursue some other position with some money in your pocket to ease the transition.

However, whether it is in business or other areas of life, accepting the first offer is often not the best option. In order to get the most out of your severance offer, it is important to first understand why your employer offered it to you in the first place. Once you understand the motivations behind the offer, you are in a better position to either accept or decline, or negotiate specific aspects of it.

The fall and rise of Travis Kalanick?

After Steve Jobs was forced out of the company he founded in 1985, he left Apple to form NeXT. He also spent time funding the spinout that would become Pixar, not to mention a movie called Toy Story.

Spending time soon became biding his time. Following NeXT’s merger with Apple, Jobs became CEO and revived the company he helped start.

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