Steve Rowles is Chair of the firm’s San Diego Corporate Group, Managing Partner of the San Diego office, and firmwide co-chair of the Emerging Companies & Venture Capital Group. He has practiced in San Diego for over 25 years and has a wealth of experience as corporate counsel to public and private companies, and the venture capital and private equity funds that invest in those companies.

He counsels companies at all stages in their life cycles. He distinguishes himself by achieving successful outcomes for clients utilizing best in class negotiating skills and creative and strategic thinking. He has been instrumental in starting, building and exiting numerous emerging growth companies in a broad range of industries including biotech, medical devices, diagnostic healthcare services, clean technology and renewable energy, cybersecurity, agtech, software, semiconductors, telecommunications, e-commerce, new media and social networking.

Steve has served as lead counsel on myriad mergers and acquisitions and securities transactions, including public offerings aggregating in excess of $2 billion in proceeds and over 100 acquisition transactions.

Steve serves as general counsel and handles ’34 Act compliance, public securities offerings, and corporate governance counseling for a substantial number of public companies.

Steve is adept at handling venture capital financings for both companies and investors. His expertise in partnership and limited liability company matters has given him substantial experience in fund formation, joint ventures, and other strategic partnering transactions.

Steve was a member of Phi Beta Kappa at Northwestern University and was elected to the Order of the Coif at Boalt Hall School of Law.

Steve is active on behalf of Children’s Hospital and serves on the Board of Directors for both EvoNexus San Diego and the Jacobs Cushman San Diego Food Bank. Steve is an avid golfer, a voracious reader, and a family man.

Representative Transactions

  • Represented MTY Food Group Inc. in its successful tender offer for the shares of Papa Murphy’s Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: FRSH) in a transaction valued at $190 million
  • Represented ACEA Biosciences, Inc. in its $250 million acquisition by Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A)
  • Represented Paladin Technologies Inc. in its merger with TekWorks Inc.
  • Advised Scoperta, an innovative solution provider in advanced materials development, in its acquisition by Oerlikon Group, one of the world's leading high-tech industrial groups.
  • Represented Clean Energy Fuels (NASDAQ: CLNE), a leading provider of natural gas fuel for transportation in North America, in the $155 million sale of its renewable gas business to BP plc, a British multinational oil and gas company.
  • Represented Deere & Company (NYSE: DE) in its $170 million acquisition of Precision Planting, Inc. from Monsanto Company (NYSE: MON)
  • Represented Alaska Energy & Resources Company in its $170 million acquisition by Avista Corp. (NYSE)
  • Represented Acon Laboratories in its two complex cross-border acquisitions by Inverness Medical Innovations, Inc. totaling $375 million
  • Represented Mentor Corporation in its $1.12 billion merger with Johnson & Johnson
  • Represented Live Nation, Inc. in its $354 million acquisition of the House of Blues
  • Represented Cogent, Inc. (NASDAQ: COGT) in its $943 million acquisition by 3M Company
  • Represented Clean Energy Fuels (NASDAQ: CLNE) in its sale of BAF Technologies, Inc. to Westport Innovations Inc. for $30 million
Venture Capital
  • Represented VoloAgri Group, an agriculture technology company known for seed genetics, in its $56 million Series B and $69 million Series C financings
  • Represented Curology, Inc., a leading telemedicine provider of dermatology services and prescriptions, in its $15 million Series B Stock financings
  • Represented The Pill Club Holdings, Inc., an ecommerce provider of birth control pills, in its $50 million Series B financing
  • Represented Obsidian Sensors, Inc., a thermal imaging and sensor company, in its $22 million Series A financing
  • Represented Acea Biosciences Inc., a developer of cell analysis instrumentation technologies, in a $30 million Series E Preferred Stock financing
  • Represented Akriveia Therapeutics, Inc., an immunology company, it is $7.5 million Series A financing
  • Represented GENEOS Therapeutics, Inc., a leader in the field of personalized cancer immunotherapy, in its $10 million Series A financing
  • Completed numerous company side venture financings most recently including Eathere Brands, PocketDerm, Scoperta, Soft Science, Formula E Holdings, Peloton Interactive, Centerbeam, Cellics,, and Hii Def
  • Represented venture capital investors making investments in numerous portfolio companies most recently including ColorTokens, Inc., SolidOpinion, Palantir, 7 Billion People, Live Books, Bridge Lux, Global Analytics, Lolli & Pops, Sol Republic, MIR Partners, Sky Grid, Printi, Mens’ Market, and Frank & Oaks
  • Represented Forward Ventures LLC, a leading e-commerce company in Korea doing business as “Coupang”, in three preferred unit financings aggregating $500 million
  • Represented Eolas Therapeutics Inc., a start-up life sciences company in connection with a milestone based licensing transaction with AstraZeneca Inc. with upfront and contingent proceeds potentially in excess of $140 million
  • Represented Clean Energy Fuels (NASDAQ: CLNE) in its $60 million investment in NG Advantage LLC
Capital Markets
  • Represented Imprimis Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: IMMY) in its $14 million initial underwritten public offering
  • Represented OncoSec Medical Incorporated (NASDAQ: ONCS) in a registered direct offerings aggregating in excess $80 million
  • Represented Inovio Pharmaceuticals, Inc. in a $30 million registered direct offering
  • Represented Fulgent Genetics, Inc. (NASDAQ: FLGT) in its $43.5 million initial public offering
  • Represented Clean Energy Fuels (NASDAQ: CLNE) in its $110 million at-the-market offering
  • Represented Clean Energy Fuels (NASDAQ: CLNE) in a 144A offering of Convertible Senior Notes in the aggregate principal amount of $250 million
  • Represented Clean Energy Fuels (NASDAQ: CLNE) in debt financing transactions with proceeds in excess of $500 million
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