Joe specializes in structuring and negotiating tech/IP-centric deals (all kinds of technology transactions, JVs, patent licensing/sales, and IP aspects of mergers & acquisitions), in the use of IP as strategic business assets, and in IP monetization.
He has been lead counsel on hundreds of deals involving tens of billions of dollars in value – within and across the computer, electronics, semiconductor, entertainment, consumer goods, chemicals, energy, automotive, manufacturing and healthcare industries. Because of this broad experience, Joe is often retained to “bridge the gap” in deals between industries that historically didn’t interact with each other. For example, he often structures deals regarding consumer electronics companies (on the one hand) and manufacturing or healthcare companies (on the other hand) involving technology transfer, strategic alliances, and IP licensing (especially standards-essential patents). Joe is also active in international deals, particularly between U.S. and Japanese companies. Joe has also led development of corporate patent portfolios, overseen complex patent litigation, and been an arbitrator.
Joe also serves as a consultant or expert witness in high stakes litigations involving issues of patents, patent/tech transactions (including licenses), and strategic alliances/joint ventures. A prominent litigator called Joe “one of the best expert witnesses you could hope to deal with. He considers all the issues before committing to an opinion, and his positions are always rock solid.”
Joe is also a Lecturer in Law at Stanford Law School, where he (co-)teaches the “Technology and Patent Licensing” course. He has also (co-)taught the “Patent Law and Policy” course as an adjunct faculty member at U.C. Berkeley School of Law.
Joe previously served as VP & General Counsel of Cryptography Research, Inc. (now part of Rambus Inc.), playing a key role in developing and implementing a licensing program under which more than 10 billion devices a year are currently being made by the company’s licensees worldwide in the smartcard, semiconductor, pay TV, printer and other industries, as well as developing and managing the company’s intellectual property portfolio.
Joe is a recognized authority on IP law. He has been named one of the “World’s Leading IP Strategists,” “World’s Leading IP & Technology Licensing Lawyers” and “World’s Leading Patent Professionals” by Intellectual Asset Management (IAM) publications. IAM has listed Joe as 1 of only 10 “highly recommended” attorneys for IP transactions in all of California, and the only one at a boutique (non-AmLaw 100) law firm. Over the years, the IAM guides have stated:
“Joseph Yang is a major-league deal maker and licensing authority” as well as “a transactional mastermind.”
“He is a thorough and tough negotiator and one of the best IP transactional lawyers out there.”
Joe is “is an authority on the licensing of SEPs and a cross-border deal broker of the highest order.”
“He … is a creative problem solver who can clearly articulate legal risks and provide effective advice to guide business decision making.”
Joe is also profiled in “Marquis Who’s Who in American Law”, “Marquis Who’s Who in America”, and “Marquis Who’s Who in the World,” and named to the SuperLawyers list for Northern California. Joe co-chairs the “Advanced Licensing,” “Advanced Patent Licensing” and “Understanding the IP License” courses at the Practising Law Institute in NYC, SF and Chicago. He has written for journals and books, and been cited by U.S. federal courts and treatises, on patent and licensing law.
Joe also serves on the Board of Directors of the Licensing Executives Society – Silicon Valley Chapter, and on the Board of Directors of the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Silicon Valley.
Before PatentEsque Law Group, Joe co-founded and later led the IP Strategy & Transactions practice based in the Silicon Valley office of the multinational law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP. Before that, he was at other New York-and California-based law firms. In his early career, Joe was a research engineer in the aerospace and energy industries. He holds a J.D. from Stanford Law School and a Ph.D. (engineering) from the California Institute of Technology, where he has served on the board and executive committee of the Caltech Associates, and on the board of the Caltech Alumni Association.