How the Playing Field is Leveled
Business law, broadly speaking, is a coin with two sides.
One side is the negotiation of business arrangements and the drafting of agreements memorializing those understandings.
The other side of that coin is the resolution of disputes that arise from the operation of these agreements -- a process called litigation.
Due to the different skills and legal temperament required on each side of the coin, business lawyers tend to practice almost entirely on one side or the other.
During 10 years litigating complex commercial matters, Gary Paranzino questioned witnesses why language was drafted the way it was.
Later, drafting hundreds of technology industry agreements, he asked himself "what do I want this to say, so that someday a judge interprets it in a manner favorable to my client?"
The value of having deep experience on both sides of the coin seems so obvious that it may be quite shocking when trying to find a lawyer with that dual degree of comprehensive experience.
Paranzino started his career in a large law firm that represented a highly disruptive Wall Street investment banking firm. It generated many headline-making cases litigated under an intensive spotlight.
For a decade he expanded his abilities working with prominent lawyers on these matters -- initially involving high-yield “junk” bonds, Securities Act and Securities Exchange Act cases and insider trading claims, and later on matters involving losses in the billions arising from the trading of complex financial derivatives.
As an avid computer programming hobbyist in his youth, Paranzino found it impossible to resist leaping into the emerging consumer Internet in its early days, and he sacrificed his secure big firm legal career to do so.
Without experience on the "other side" of the coin, Paranzino relied on his litigation instincts to negotiate and draft contracts and intellectual property licensing that would hold up favorably in court.
As VP, General Counsel & Secretary of PointCast, Paranzino invented new legal agreements for conducting one of the first advertising-supported media businesses on the Internet. The PointCast Network, at its peak, was reported to be responsible for over half of all traffic on the Internet.
As Secretary to its Board, he experienced first-hand the volatility of funding, IPO plans and strategic relationships affecting emerging tech start-ups.
As Chief Legal Officer, VP of Business Development and Corporate Secretary of the first luxury goods e-commerce company, Ashford.com, to achieve an IPO Paranzino had to clear legal obstacles erected by luxury brands that were worried about disruption of their distribution channels.
The Ashford.com IPO resulted in one of the earliest billion dollar+ market capitalizations for an Internet start-up.
The CLO role provided him with additional direct exposure to corporate governance and funding matters, as he guided the Board agenda and solved substantial business problems with legal-minded strategies.
The numerous matters ParanzinoLaw has handled over 20 years have provided additional actionable insights into the innovation ecosystem, as well as the motivations of counter-parties of clients in various seats around the table.
By leveling the playing field for clients, Paranzino participates daily in the continuing evolution of emerging companies and industries, at their leading edge.
For a sense of the scope and depth of these matters, continue reading here.
© Gary A. Paranzino 2022