Nov. 6, 2014 — Attorneys at Shumaker Loop & Kendrick, LLP are poised to play a significant role in the development of Tampa Bay’s technology-based industries thanks to the firm’s new office, part of the University of South Florida’s sprawling USF CONNECT campus. Shumaker’s new office will allow its attorneys to provide top-tier legal assistance to budding startup companies and forward-thinking entrepreneurs. The firm is celebrating the opening of the new space by sponsoring the reception at USF CONNECT’s free B.E.A.T. (Building Entrepreneurship Around Tampa) event from 1:30 to 6 p.m. on Tues., Nov. 18.
The USF CONNECT program unites technology and business talent throughout a 23-county region by providing access to high-quality research, faculty, students, inventors, investors and more. Focusing on the needs of Tampa Bay’s tech and life sciences entrepreneurs, USF CONNECT provides facilities, partners and resources for business development.
Shumaker attorney Thomas E. Toner is spearheading the firm’s efforts. He worked in the USF CONNECT space from 2011 till he joined Shumaker in June. As a Registered United States Patent Attorney, Toner provided USF CONNECT businesses with seminars about intellectual property rights and other legal issues that face new companies in high-tech fields.
“Every new company needs to be aware of the rules that govern intellectual property, but particularly for tech companies, it’s imperative that they understand the steps they need to take to protect themselves and their inventions,” says Toner, who has worked on intellectual property issues for 11 years. “Shumaker’s new office gives the entrepreneurs at USF CONNECT access to all sorts of services, like corporate formation and health care law, patent prosecution and applications, trademark disputes and prosecution and more.”
Shumaker’s physical presence at USF CONNECT is intended to create unplanned collisions between new companies and attorneys. Startups frequently don’t have the resources to hire legal help; the proximity between new businesses and Shumaker attorneys will generate natural interactions between the two.
“You never know where a conversation is going to go,” says Toner. “In my time at USF CONNECT, those free-flowing interactions have been very rewarding.”
"We are delighted to welcome Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP to USF CONNECT,” says Stephanie Ashley, the director of innovation and incubation programs for USF CONNECT at the University of South Florida. “The services that this firm brings to our Tampa Bay Technology Incubator clients provide a valuable ingredient for the success of these entrepreneurs who are building and growing new startup companies.”
To celebrate its new office, Shumaker is sponsoring the reception at USF’s annual B.E.A.T. event, which runs from 1:30 to 6 p.m. on Tues., Nov. 18, at the USF Research Park Galleria, 3802 Spectrum Blvd., Tampa. Exhibitors will offer samples and demonstrations of their products from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Then, from 3 to 4:30 p.m., selected companies will pitch their business ventures to a panel of angel investors. After that, the reception sponsored by Shumaker begins at 4:30 p.m. and ends at 6. Last year’s B.E.A.T. event drew more than 200 business leaders, entrepreneurial support organizations, community dignitaries and local media outlets.
About Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP
Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick is a full-service business law firm with more than 240 lawyers, 60 paralegals and 495 employees in five offices: Toledo and Columbus, Ohio; Tampa and Sarasota, Florida; and Charlotte, North Carolina. In each of its markets, Shumaker is the premier provider of quality legal services to individuals, small businesses, health care providers, nonprofits and Fortune 500 and international corporations.