Robert C. Piasentin 

Robert C. Piasentin

Vancouver
Royal Centre, Suite 1500
1055 West Georgia Street, PO Box 11117
Vancouver, British Columbia V6E 4N7

t: 604.893.7636
e: robert.piasentin@mcmillan.ca

overview

Robert Piasentin has extensive experience in providing practical legal advice across all aspects of a business including leadership, strategy, governance, negotiation and consulting. He is a trusted advisor, developing and implementing high-level strategies across all industries and verticals and has contributed to the development and growth of all types of business globally, notably in Canada, the United States and England.

Robert has delivered top quality strategic business law advice in the technology sector for over twenty years, having worked as the General Counsel, Corporate Secretary and Privacy Officer for a leading North American information technology and management consulting firm for more than 13 years.  He has developed a strong commercial practice with a focus on technology outsourcing transactions, software development and licensing solutions, strategic IP and technology commercialization arrangements, privacy and cybersecurity.  In addition, Robert’s breadth of experience in a business setting has given him a unique, practical and deep understanding of the business and legal challenges faced by today’s technology companies when developing, integrating, operating and marketing technology solutions globally, when developing and implementing strategic growth initiatives, and in the day-to-day operating challenges.  This understanding provides Robert’s clients with immense value and confidence when making any and all business decisions.  
Robert is the Board Chair and is actively involved with the Alzheimer Society of B.C..  He is also a Board member of the Alzheimer’s Research Foundation of British Columbia and will be joining the Board of the Alzheimer Society of Canada in 2020.  Robert is a founding member of both the Association of Corporate Counsel – BC Chapter (where he was the first Chair of the Chapter) and the St. Thomas More Catholic Lawyers Guild of British Columbia. He also sits on the Board and serves as the Secretary of the Red Resort Association. Robert has participated in hiring, award and Board selection committees, as well as co-chairing a BC Technology Association CEO Roundtable. He is a frequent contributor to conferences and programs as well as local and national media.

Robert has also been recognized for his contributions to both the legal and business communities. In 2013, Robert was named one of Business in Vancouver’s “Top Forty Under 40”, and in 2014 he received one of the Association of Corporate Counsel’s “Top 30-Somethings” awards. In 2017, Robert was shortlisted as one of the top six global lawyers in the General Commercial category by the Global Counsel Awards.

Representative Matters

Operations:

  • Leading and managing multiple technology outsourcing projects across various industries
  • Responsible for managing all legal aspects of $1B IT services outsourcing project
  • Lead negotiator and legal advisor on $50M global IT services pursuit
  • Strategic leadership on all business planning, operations and development activities
  • Advise and draft all customer, supplier, commercialization, professional services and leasing agreements and related business communications

Licensing and Sponsorship:

  • Responsible for licensing global sports, athletic and leisure brands globally
  • Identifying, negotiating with and securing global manufacturers, suppliers and distributors
  • Negotiating and closing material sponsorship agreements for major sporting personalities and events globally including the Championships at Wimbledon (tennis), the French Open (tennis), Professional Golfers Association, English Football Association, World Boxing Association, and the English and Wales Cricket Board

Compliance:

  • Responsible for company compliance with all legislative changes and requirements
  • Implement and lead global protection and commercialization program for IP portfolio
  • Privacy Officer ensuring compliance with Privacy and related legislation
  • Develop and implement internal compliance training programs around privacy and security risk mitigation strategies, employee tax risk, governance and related company strategic initiatives
  • Lead internal insurance compliance strategy

Corporate and Commercial:

  • Lead negotiator on multiple technical and complicated transactions with numerous public and private sector entities
  • Lead or key advisor on domestic and international M&A
  • Canadian legal advisor on acquisition of Sierra Systems by NTT DATA
  • Advise on, negotiate and finalize contracts across all aspects of a business including IT outsourcing, M&A, licensing, IP commercialization, strategic partnerships, supply chain, manufacturing, distribution, subcontracting and financings in multiple industries such as IT, retail, natural resources, financial services, insurance and health
  • Advise and provide leadership to all company units, including finance, marketing/communications, HR, IT and operations on all relevant matters including enterprise wide initiatives

Retail:

  • Key legal advisor on securing supply for international retain chain
  • Coordinating prosecution against individuals and businesses selling counterfeit and grey goods
  • Representing retail clients in government investigations including consumer complaints and anti-competitive practices

Dispute Resolution:

  • Lead crisis response and coordinate with affected business units (communications, finance, HR, operations) to develop appropriate and timely strategic responses
  • Led winning breach of contract claim for $7M
  • Led successful dispute over the commercialization of technology resulting in $2M win
  • Led negotiations in defense of and settled a US$13M claim for US$1.5M
  • Settled a dispute with seller in an M&A transaction for CDN$117K

Presentations

IP/Tech 101 for Emerging Companies

Publications

Federal Court Defends CASL, Says Prohibition on Spam is Constitutional
Ontario Small Businesses Get a New Ride on the Digital Main Street
Making B.C. an Emerging Economy Leader
Material Adverse Effect Clauses in a COVID-19 World
June 10, 2020 Update: Innovating During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Making Innovation Work for British Columbia

Education

  • Queen Mary, University of London, Center for Commercial Law Studies, Masters of Laws (LLM) - 2004
  • University of Toronto, Bachelor of Laws - 1999

Year Of Call

  • Called to the British Columbia bar - 2000
  • Called to the England and Wales bar - 2004

Practices

business law
CASL - spam and other electronic threats
e-commerce
intellectual property
licensing
outsourcing
privacy and data protection
privacy and data protection compliance
social media
technology

Industries

applied technology
biotechnology
cleantech
information technology
sports
startups and emerging companies
telecommunications
video games and esports

Directorships and Professional Associations

  • Board Chair, Alzheimer Society of B.C.
  • Board Member, Alzheimer Society of B.C.
  • Board Member, Alzheimer Society of Canada
  • Board Member, Alzheimer’s Research Foundation of British Columbia 
  • Founding Member, Association of Corporate Counsel - BC Chapter
  • Founding Member, St. Thomas More Catholic Lawyers Guild of British Columbia
  • Board Member & Secretary, Red Resort Association
  • Past Co-Chair, BC Technology Association Web/IT Services CEO-Council Roundtable

Teaching Engagements

  • Speaker:  “Legal Issues in Privacy & Cyber Security – Compliance and Best Practices” (Late Spring 2020 – temporarily postponed due to COVID-19) (Infonex)
    • Panel:  Are You Meeting Legal Obligations to Safeguard and Protect Client/Customer Information?
    • Panel:  How Will You Be Judged in the Aftermath of an Attack?  Best Practices in Responding to Data Breaches.
  • Speaker:  “The Future of Law Firms”, BC Legal Innovation Forum (2018) (ADB Insights)
  • Speaker:  “Negotiation Technology Consulting Contracts”, 18th & 20th Annual Negotiating and Drafting Major Business Agreements (2014-2015) (Federated Press)
  • Speaker:  “Corporate Counsel’s Role in Business Operations, 14th Mini MBA for Lawyers (2014) (Federated Press)

Community Involvement

  • Alzheimer Society of B.C.:
    • Board Chair (2018 – current)
    • Director (2015 – current)
    • Past 1st Vice Chair of the Board (2016 – 2018)
    • Past Chair of the Governance Committee (2016 – 2018)
  • Alzheimer’s Research Foundation of British Columbia:  Director (2015 – current)
  • Alzheimer Society of Canada:  Director (2020 – current)
  • Association of Corporate Counsel
    • BC Chapter, Founding Member (2011)
    • BC Chapter, Board Member (2011 – 2018)
    • BC Chapter, Board Chair (2011 – 2014)
    • BC Chapter, Past Board Chair (2014 – 2016)
    • BC Chapter, Co-Chair Sponsorship Committee (2011 – 2016)
    • Global Organization, Board of Directors’ Nominating Committee (2015)
    • Global Organization, Judge, “Top 30-Somethings” (Awards 2015 – current)
  • Innovatio Awards (Canadian Lawyer InHouse / Thomson Reuters):  Advisory Panel and Judge (2014 – 2019)
  • Canadian Law Awards (Key Media) (successor to Innovatio Awards):  Judge (2020 – current)
  • BC Technology Association, Web/IT Services CEO-Council Roundtable Co-Chair (2014 – 2019)
  • University of British Columbia Allard School of Law, Student Externship Program mentor (2018 – 2020)
  • St. Thomas More Catholic Lawyers Guild of BC, Founding Member and Board Member (2011 – current)
  • Red Resort Association, Director and Secretary (2017 – current)
  • Coquitlam Little League:
    • Director & Umpire-In-Chief (2018 – current)
    • Coach (2012 – 2019) – Canadian Little League Majors All Star Champions 2019
  • Coquitlam Moody Minor Baseball:  Coach (2020)
  • All Saints Parish:  Parish Council/Leadership Committee (2015 – 2019)
  • All Saints Parish:  Volunteer Teacher, Parish Religious Education Program (2011 – current)

Awards & Rankings

  • Business in Vancouver “Top Forty Under 40” (2013)
  • Association of Corporate Counsel “Top 30-Somethings” (2014)
  • Global Counsel Awards – General Commercial – top 6 lawyers globally (2017)
vcard

Robert Piasentin has extensive experience in providing practical legal advice across all aspects of a business including leadership, strategy, governance, negotiation and consulting. He is a trusted advisor, developing and implementing high-level strategies across all industries and verticals and has contributed to the development and growth of all types of business globally, notably in Canada, the United States and England.

Robert has delivered top quality strategic business law advice in the technology sector for over twenty years, having worked as the General Counsel, Corporate Secretary and Privacy Officer for a leading North American information technology and management consulting firm for more than 13 years.  He has developed a strong commercial practice with a focus on technology outsourcing transactions, software development and licensing solutions, strategic IP and technology commercialization arrangements, privacy and cybersecurity.  In addition, Robert’s breadth of experience in a business setting has given him a unique, practical and deep understanding of the business and legal challenges faced by today’s technology companies when developing, integrating, operating and marketing technology solutions globally, when developing and implementing strategic growth initiatives, and in the day-to-day operating challenges.  This understanding provides Robert’s clients with immense value and confidence when making any and all business decisions.  
Robert is the Board Chair and is actively involved with the Alzheimer Society of B.C..  He is also a Board member of the Alzheimer’s Research Foundation of British Columbia and will be joining the Board of the Alzheimer Society of Canada in 2020.  Robert is a founding member of both the Association of Corporate Counsel – BC Chapter (where he was the first Chair of the Chapter) and the St. Thomas More Catholic Lawyers Guild of British Columbia. He also sits on the Board and serves as the Secretary of the Red Resort Association. Robert has participated in hiring, award and Board selection committees, as well as co-chairing a BC Technology Association CEO Roundtable. He is a frequent contributor to conferences and programs as well as local and national media.

Robert has also been recognized for his contributions to both the legal and business communities. In 2013, Robert was named one of Business in Vancouver’s “Top Forty Under 40”, and in 2014 he received one of the Association of Corporate Counsel’s “Top 30-Somethings” awards. In 2017, Robert was shortlisted as one of the top six global lawyers in the General Commercial category by the Global Counsel Awards.

Operations:

  • Leading and managing multiple technology outsourcing projects across various industries
  • Responsible for managing all legal aspects of $1B IT services outsourcing project
  • Lead negotiator and legal advisor on $50M global IT services pursuit
  • Strategic leadership on all business planning, operations and development activities
  • Advise and draft all customer, supplier, commercialization, professional services and leasing agreements and related business communications

Licensing and Sponsorship:

  • Responsible for licensing global sports, athletic and leisure brands globally
  • Identifying, negotiating with and securing global manufacturers, suppliers and distributors
  • Negotiating and closing material sponsorship agreements for major sporting personalities and events globally including the Championships at Wimbledon (tennis), the French Open (tennis), Professional Golfers Association, English Football Association, World Boxing Association, and the English and Wales Cricket Board

Compliance:

  • Responsible for company compliance with all legislative changes and requirements
  • Implement and lead global protection and commercialization program for IP portfolio
  • Privacy Officer ensuring compliance with Privacy and related legislation
  • Develop and implement internal compliance training programs around privacy and security risk mitigation strategies, employee tax risk, governance and related company strategic initiatives
  • Lead internal insurance compliance strategy

Corporate and Commercial:

  • Lead negotiator on multiple technical and complicated transactions with numerous public and private sector entities
  • Lead or key advisor on domestic and international M&A
  • Canadian legal advisor on acquisition of Sierra Systems by NTT DATA
  • Advise on, negotiate and finalize contracts across all aspects of a business including IT outsourcing, M&A, licensing, IP commercialization, strategic partnerships, supply chain, manufacturing, distribution, subcontracting and financings in multiple industries such as IT, retail, natural resources, financial services, insurance and health
  • Advise and provide leadership to all company units, including finance, marketing/communications, HR, IT and operations on all relevant matters including enterprise wide initiatives

Retail:

  • Key legal advisor on securing supply for international retain chain
  • Coordinating prosecution against individuals and businesses selling counterfeit and grey goods
  • Representing retail clients in government investigations including consumer complaints and anti-competitive practices

Dispute Resolution:

  • Lead crisis response and coordinate with affected business units (communications, finance, HR, operations) to develop appropriate and timely strategic responses
  • Led winning breach of contract claim for $7M
  • Led successful dispute over the commercialization of technology resulting in $2M win
  • Led negotiations in defense of and settled a US$13M claim for US$1.5M
  • Settled a dispute with seller in an M&A transaction for CDN$117K
July 2020
Federal Court Defends CASL, Says Prohibition on Spam is Constitutional

Technology and Business Law Bulletin

June 2020
Making B.C. an Emerging Economy Leader

Technology Law / Business Law Bulletin

June 23, 2020
Material Adverse Effect Clauses in a COVID-19 World

Business Law Bulletin

June 10, 2020
June 10, 2020 Update: Innovating During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Intellectual Property and Technology Bulletin

June 2020
Making Innovation Work for British Columbia

Technology and Business Law Bulletin

September 2020
IP/Tech 101 for Emerging Companies
Webinar