Joint Ventures, Collaborations and Alliances

Ropes & Gray’s IP transactions practice group has the knowledge, experience and global footprint to help our clients realize their full business potential worldwide.


“Sources say: ‘They give really precise advice and at the right time.’” Chambers Asia
“Collaboration between the firm's corporate and intellectual property groups is one component of Ropes’s industry practice that one client finds ‘crucial to why we hired them.’” LMG Life Sciences
“We are very pleased with the quality of work and responsiveness of the IP group at Ropes. Their experience and attention to detail are major factors.” IP Client, Chambers USA


In today’s global environment, businesses often need to collaborate to successfully grow their product and service offerings and expand across industries and geographies.

We have years of experience negotiating, structuring and administering collaborative business structures, including joint ventures, research and marketing collaborations, and strategic alliances.

We focus on our clients’ operational goals and the legal, financial, tax and governance issues that are critical to the successful operation of these ventures. By drawing on the resources of our offices in Asia, Europe and North America, we deliver unparalleled results for our multinational clients.

We have experience with joint ventures, collaborations and alliances spanning a wide range of industries, including:

  • Life Sciences: Pharmaceuticals, Biotechnology, Medical Devices and Digital Health
  • Technology: Software and Devices
  • Private Equity
  • Financial Services, Fintech, Hedge Funds, Investment Management 
  • Consumer-Branded Products
  • Digital Media and e-Commerce
  • Health Care
  • Gaming
  • Universities and Colleges


  • Represented Boehringer Ingelheim (BI) in reaching a global agreement with AbbVie to jointly develop and commercialize a biologic antibody for the treatment of psoriasis. We advised BI in connection with drafting and negotiating the global agreement and ancillary agreements, including a licensing, collaboration and transfer agreement and a clinical trial services agreement.
  • Advised CMC Capital Partners, a leading sports, media and entertainment-focused private equity firm in China, in its partnership with Creative Artists Agency (CAA), the premier U.S.-based global entertainment and sports agency. The partnership resulted in the formation of CAA China.
  • Assisted Tudor Investment Corporation with issues arising from technology development, management of proprietary computer-based trading systems and joint ventures in technology-based system. We assisted Tudor Investment Corporation by leading transactions involving the acquisition or disposition of proprietary technology assets for use in quantitative trading including joint ventures, structured licensing agreements, asset acquisitions and structured fund investments.
  • Served as lead outside counsel to Pfizer, Inc. in connection with its ground-breaking PD-1 oncology collaboration with Merck KGaA. Pfizer’s collaboration with Merck KGaA focuses on the development and marketing of anti-PD-L1 antibodies designed to treat various tumor types. The transaction was honored with the “2015 Deal of Distinction” Award in the life sciences category by the Licensing Executives Society (U.S.A. and Canada).
  • Represented New Mountain Capital, LLC in its partnership with Topix Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a provider of innovative therapeutic and cosmetic skin care products. New Mountain will provide Topix with significant financial and strategic resources to support future growth initiatives, which include new product development and acquisitions.
  • Represented Akebia Therapeutics, Inc. in its $1 billion collaboration and license agreement with Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co. to develop and commercialize vadadustat in the United States.
  • Advised JHL Biotech Inc. on a landmark strategic alliance with global healthcare leader Sanofi, which involves the development and commercialization of biosimilar therapies in China using JHL’s development and manufacturing facilities in Taiwan and China, and Sanofi’s commercial sales platform in China.
  • Advised Eli Lilly in its digital healthcare collaboration with leading China internet company Tencent and online healthcare professional community DXY to develop and launch an integrated diabetes patient care program in China.
  • Represented Sarepta Therapeutics in its gene therapy research collaboration agreement with Genethon, a non-profit R&D organization dedicated to the development of biotherapies for orphan genetic diseases, to jointly develop treatments for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD).
  • Represented Selecta Biosciences in its $30 million licensing agreement and collaboration with Spark Therapeutics, with eligibility for up to $430 million in milestone payments for each target and tiered royalties on commercialized gene therapy sales.
  • Represented Shire Pharmaceuticals in its agreement with Sangamo BioSciences, a leader in therapeutic genome editing, to revise their January 2012 collaboration and license agreement to expedite the development of ZFP Therapeutics for hemophilia A and B and Huntington’s disease
  • Advised Beijing-based CANbridge Life Sciences in licensing worldwide rights outside North America to a clinical-stage oncology inhibitory antibody drug candidate from Aveo Oncology Inc., of Cambridge, Mass.
  • Represented Genzyme, a Sanofi company, in the negotiation of a strategic collaboration agreement with Voyager Therapeutics to discover, develop and commercialize novel gene therapies for severe central nervous system disorders, under which Genzyme made $100 million of upfront commitments to Voyager (including $65 million in cash, a $30 million equity investment and additional in-kind contributions) and potential development and sales milestone payments totaled $745 million.
  • Advised Sarepta Therapeutics on its exclusive license and collaboration agreement with Summit Therapeutics plc granting Sarepta rights in Europe, as well as in Turkey and the Commonwealth of Independent States.
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