Riaz Karamali has been more than a corporate attorney to MycoTechnology, but a key strategic advisor helping to guide the company through critical strategic decisions and negotiations—Riaz always makes the deadlines, no matter what it takes to get it done.
—Alan Hahn, CEO, MycoTechnology

Riaz Karamali is a counselor and deal-maker who assists clients with negotiating and closing domestic and international venture finance, private equity, M&A and technology transactions.

Riaz has worked with hundreds of startup and emerging companies, guiding them from their pre-founding stages through their seed and venture capital financing rounds, significant commercial contracts and strategic alliances to their ultimate exit transactions. He has acted as outside general counsel to many such privately held companies in a wide range of industries, including the blockchain/cryptocurrency, video game, SaaS, FinTech, food tech, biotechnology, semiconductor, energy and medical device sectors. Riaz also regularly represents investors in such companies.

Representative Experience

Represented Solium Capital LLC in its acquisition of Capshare Inc.


Represented Manticore Games Inc. in its Series A preferred stock financing led by Benchmark capital.


Represented revolutionary food tech company MycoTechnology Inc. in its Series A and Series B financings, led by Middleland Capital, S2G Ventures and Seventure Partners.

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  • Represented HYPR, a developer of biometric security blockchain-based software in its seed financing led by RTP Ventures and its Series A financing led by RRE Ventures.
  • Represented Blockchain Capital in portfolio investments in blockchain startups.
  • Represent a number of venture capital funds and investment groups including Keiretsu Capital, Blockchain Capital, S2G Ventures and The Husseini Group.
  • Advise cryptocurrency and blockchain startups on securities law issues related to token pre-sales, SAFTs and initial coin offerings.
  • Significant experience with cross-border transactions involving numerous countries, including Australia, Bahrain, Canada, the Cayman Islands, China, Dubai, Egypt, France, Belgium, Germany, Honduras, India, Israel, Jordan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Pakistan, the Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland and Turkey.
  • Represented INVECAS in its acquisition of Lattice Semiconductor Corporation’s HDMI design team and Simplay Labs subsidiary.
  • Represented revolutionary cryptocurrency startup Chia Network Inc. in its seed financing.
  • Represented HYPR, a developer of biometric security software, in its seed financing led by RTP Ventures and its Series A financing led by RRE Ventures.
  • Represented crowdfunding platform fig in its seed financing and Series A financing led by Spark Capital and Greycroft.
  • Represented multi-national SaaS software provider FreshDesk Inc. in its Series E preferred stock financing round, led by Tiger Global, Accel U.S. and Google Capital, as well as its Series F preferred stock financing round, led by Accel U.S. and Sequoia India.
  • Represented Canadian investor Sprott TWM SPV LP in an investment in the Series A Preferred Stock of Tradewind Markets, a FinTech company creating a gold exchange based on blockchain technologies.
  • Represented FullCycle Energy Fund, L.P. in its formation and investment activities.
  • Represented call center software company KnoahSoft Inc. in its sale to Avaya.
  • Represented enterprise software company ExactBid Inc. in its sale to Spectrum Equity.
  • Represented videogame company Concept Art House Inc. in negotiating a strategic partnership with Chinese public company Talkweb.
  • Represented videogame company, Realta Entertainment Group, in its Series A and Series B financings.
  • Represented internet videogame company, A Bit Lucky Inc., in its acquisition by Zynga Inc.
  • Represented internet videogame company, Concept Art House Inc., in its acquisition by Zattikka PLC.
  • Represented Element Partners in connection with its multi-national acquisition of Soleras Ltd. and the industrial coating business of Bekaert NV in a simultaneous roll-up transaction with operations in the U.S., Belgium and China.
  • Represented numerous independent videogame companies in publishing, joint venture and venture sharing transactions.
  • Represented a leading multi-national telecommunications company in connection with a nation-wide lease management outsourcing project.
  • Represented a Fortune 100 Web portal in negotiating and documenting a multi-year strategic alliance with leading technology media company that includes content licensing, Internet advertising, software distribution and search marketing components.
  • Represented a Fortune 100 web portal in negotiating and documenting complex, multi-year Internet advertising alliance transactions.
  • Represented a Fortune 100 technology manufacturer in numerous strategic acquisitions, joint ventures and strategic investments.
  • Represented an aerospace defense contractor in its acquisition by a Fortune 500 defense contractor.
  • Represented an educational publishing company in its acquisition by one of the nation’s largest non-profit organizations.
  • Represented a Fortune 100 technology distribution company in a major business process outsourcing engagement involving transfer of numerous functions across three “towers” (finance, sales and product management) to two major outsourcing service providers with facilities in India and Philippines.
  • Represented a Fortune 100 technology manufacturer in a major business process outsourcing engagement involving transfer of numerous functions in the customs processing and governmental relations area; transaction involved transfer of intellectual property and employees in numerous locations world-wide.
  • Represented a data management and data protection solution provider in the negotiation of a manufacturing outsourcing agreement.
  • Represented an offshore outsourcing company that provides multi-channel customer and technical support, business process outsourcing, and concierge services with their outsourcing agreements.

Professional Highlights

Serves as a judge of the Rice Business Plan Competition, the world’s richest and largest student startup competition, as well as many other pitch competitions.


Member of the board of directors, American Pakistan Foundation.

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  • Honors & Awards
    • Chambers USA, IT & IT Outsourcing—California (2011-2013)
    • The Legal 500 U.S., Technology: Transactions (2010-2013)
  • Speaking Engagements
    • “Blockchains, Smart Contracts and the Law,” Token Fest (March 2018)
    • "Opportunities and Risks in Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies," Berkeley Blockchain Panel (November 2017).
    • "Will Blockchain Change Your Life? Opportunities & Applications," presentation at the OPEN Global Retreat (August 2017).
    • “What Are Blockchain Smart Contracts and How Do They Work?,” part of Blockchain 102 Webinar – Pillsbury client webinar (June 2017).
    • “Cross-Border M&A and Strategic Investments,” presentation to Silicon Valley Technology Venture Launch Program (June 2017).
    • “Is the Blockchain All Hype or the Next Industrial Revolution?,” SV Forum FinTech Evolution Conference: Banking on the Blockchain (May 2017).
    • “Making Sense of Blockchain Smart Contracts,” OPEN Forum – Silicon Valley (April 2017).
    • “Venture Fundraising in Silicon Valley,” presentation to Silicon Valley Technology Venture Launch Program (March 2017).
    • “Silicon Valley Startup Funding Trends,” Idea to IPO Event (February 2017).
    • “Blockchain 101 Webinar: Understanding blockchain and its application,” – Pillsbury client webinar (2016).
    • “2016 Gowlings / Pillsbury Blockchain Symposium,” – Panelist, Toronto (2016).
    • “The REAL Art of the Deal: Negotiating For Fun and Profit,” OPEN Forum – Silicon Valley (2016).
    • “The Funding Landscape for New Cloud and SaaS Startups,” Venture Panel Moderator, TIECON (2016).
    • “Legal Due Diligence: Dodging a Bullet,” presentation to Keiretsu Forum with Deborah Carrillo (2016).
    • “BlockChain Technology and Smart Contracts,” Pillsbury SF (2015)
    • “The Art of Negotiation: Practical Tips for Entrepreneurs,” OPEN Forum – Silicon Valley (2015)
    • “Legal Perspectives on Corporate Governance: Boards and Advisory Boards,” GlobalPrivat (2015)
    • “Introduction to Silicon Valley’s Startup Culture and Ecosystem,” Oxford Entrepreneurs (2015)
    • “Fundraising 101: A Deal Lawyer’s Perspective,” Founders Space (2014)
    • “Score! Five Keys to Maximizing Your Profit in the Sale of Your Company,” YetiZen Accelerator (2014)
    • “Negotiating the Venture Capital Term Sheet,” OPEN Houston (2014)
    • “What You & Your Startup Need to Know About Bitcoins,” Founders Space (2014)
    • “California’s New LLC Act: What You Need to Know,” CLE Marathon (2014)
    • “Mobile Gaming: Mobile Privacy, Mobile Free-to-Play, and Mobile Payments,” Gamer Technology Law Conference (2013)
    • “Negotiating in the Cloud: Key Issues in Enterprise Cloud Service Agreements,” Digital Law Forum (2012)
    • “ACC Deal or No Deal 3.0—Contracts Gone Wild!” San Francisco Bay Chapter (2012)
    • “Addressing Business and Legal Risks in Cloud Service Agreements,” Cloudcon Expo and Conference (2012)
    • “How to Become an Investor Magnet,” Silicon Valley Association of Startup Entrepreneurs (2011)
    • “Cloud Computing: A Multi-Disciplinary View,” IEEE Gold Santa Clara Valley (2011)
    • “Raising Your First Round of Venture Capital,” Silicon Valley Association of Startup Entrepreneurs (2011)
    • “Social Media and Gaming = Customer Acquisition and Retention,” Association of Corporate Growth, Silicon Valley (2010)
    • “Legal Process Outsourcing: Opportunities and Challenges,” Palo Alto Bar Association (2009)
    • “Legal Process Outsourcing: An Idea Before Its Time or Just in Time,” International Law Technology Association Annual Conference (2009)
    • “What Entrepreneurs Need to Know About Intellectual Property and Corporate Law,” Organization of Pakistani Entrepreneurs (2008)

 

Education

  • J.D., Columbia University School of Law, 1988
    Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar

    B.A., Rice University, 1985

Admissions

  • California