Wilson Sonsini Adds Josh Beser to Growing Emerging Companies Practice in New York
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PALO ALTO, CA (April 12, 2021) – Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, the premier provider of legal services to technology, life sciences, and growth enterprises worldwide, announced today that Joshua (Josh) Beser has joined the firm as a corporate partner in the New York office. He will be a member of the emerging companies practice, representing early- and growth-stage consumer brands and technology and life sciences companies in corporate matters and as outside general counsel. The move signals Wilson Sonsini’s continued efforts to strengthen the firm’s presence in New York and its commitment to the start-up and venture community in the region.
Beser brings over a decade of executive-level, in-house operating experience at consumer brands and technology and life sciences companies. Most recently, he served as general counsel at Away, a New York-based direct-to-consumer travel brand twice named as one of Fast Company’s “Most Innovative Companies” and as one of Time’s “50 Most Genius Companies,” among other honors. At Away, Beser was a member of the executive team, served as corporate secretary, and led teams in a wide range of operational functions, including information security, real estate, and global trade. Beser built and implemented Away’s legal strategy and infrastructure at scale and led Away’s legal team through substantial revenue and headcount growth, international expansion, Series C and Series D financings, growth-stage debt financing, liquidity transactions, global intellectual property development and brand protection programs, public company readiness, and executive transitions.
“Josh’s combination of in-house and law firm experience will allow him to offer both early- and late-stage clients practical insights and valuable perspectives,” said Doug Clark, managing partner at Wilson Sonsini. “Josh is well known in New York’s in-house legal community, particularly among general counsels for technology, consumer, and life sciences companies. He’s also developed extensive ties to the area’s dynamic start-up community, in large part through his work advising venture-backed, early-stage companies and founders in the market. We’re very pleased to welcome Josh to our firm.”
In June 2020, Wilson Sonsini also added Salil Gandhi to its emerging companies practice, further strengthening the firm’s corporate team in New York, which includes Megan Baier and Sriram Krishnamurthy. The team works with the Boston and Washington, D.C., offices to represent emerging company clients throughout the Northeast region. They facilitate the corporate formation of start-ups, negotiate venture capital financings, advise on strategic alliances and joint ventures, and prepare companies for initial public offerings, secondary offerings, and mergers and acquisitions.
Prior to joining Away in 2017, Beser was vice president and general counsel at Canary, a consumer technology leader. In this role as a member of the company’s management team, he built and implemented the company’s legal strategy through significant growth, advising the founders and board on all legal issues, including the company’s Series C and D financing rounds, debt financing activities, and technology- and data privacy-focused commercial and intellectual property matters, as well as leading the people function during a time of significant transition in the business.
Previously, from 2010 to 2015, Beser was assistant general counsel at Lonza, a publicly traded Swiss life sciences company, where he served on the executive leadership team of the Consumer Care division. He was responsible for a broad range of legal matters that included M&A, commercial, employment, online privacy, and consumer-facing product issues, as well as technology licensing, procurement, and implementation.
Before moving in-house, Beser was an associate in the New York office of Bingham McCutchen LLP from 2008 to 2010. He began his career at Heller Ehrman LLP, where he worked in the San Diego, New York, and London offices from 2005 to 2008. During Beser’s time at both firms, he represented venture capital and private equity funds and their high-growth operating companies in public and private financing, M&A, and commercial transactions, primarily in the technology and life sciences industries.
“I’m really excited about joining Wilson Sonsini because the firm has such an impressive brand and legacy of working with iconic and innovative technology and life sciences clients,” said Beser. “Returning to private practice gives me an opportunity to apply my in-house and law firm experience toward partnering with founders and executive teams, start-ups, and investors. I’m also looking forward to collaborating with the firm’s impressive team in NY and others in the Northeast, and contributing to the growth of the emerging companies practice in the region.”
Beser earned his J.D., magna cum laude, from the University of San Diego School of Law in 2005 and a B.S. in business administration from Colorado State University in 2002.
About Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
For 60 years, Wilson Sonsini has offered a broad range of services and legal disciplines focused on serving the principal challenges faced by the management and boards of directors of business enterprises. The firm is nationally recognized as a leading provider to growing and established clients seeking legal counsel to complete sophisticated corporate and technology transactions; manage governance and enterprise-scale matters; assist with intellectual property development, protection, and IP-driven transactions; represent them in contested disputes; and/or advise them on antitrust or other regulatory matters. With deep roots in Silicon Valley, Wilson Sonsini has offices in Austin; Beijing; Boston; Brussels; Hong Kong; London; Los Angeles; New York; Palo Alto; San Diego; San Francisco; Seattle; Shanghai; Washington, D.C.; and Wilmington, DE. For more information, please visit www.wsgr.com.