Christopher M. Arena

He | Him | His

Partner

Atlanta
T +1.404.459.5644
F +1.404.459.5734

"Christopher M. Arena has a broad and precise knowledge of the law."

— Chambers USA 2021

Overview

Chris Arena has more than 30 years of experience in intellectual property law, with his focus on the business aspects of intellectual property, including the acquisition and strategic management of intellectual property assets, as well as technology and other intellectual property transactions.

Having previously served as the Chief Intellectual Property Counsel for Cingular Wireless and earlier as Chief Patent Counsel for BellSouth Corporation, Chris has a strong command over all areas of IP practice. His strategic focus on intellectual property includes the acquisition, protection, and management of intellectual property assets, as well as leveraging those assets to create value and to mitigate business risk. His broad range of experience includes patent, trademark, copyright and trade secret practices. His practice expands beyond traditional intellectual property to include transactions involving technology, patents, software, branding and sponsorships, He often advises clients on the IP components of private equity, business and tax transactions. Chris has created and co-leads an indemnification management and enforcement practice at the firm.

Chris is the co-author of one of the definitive books on IP strategy, The Business of Intellectual Property, published by Oxford University Press.

Select Experience

  • As leader of BakerHostetler’s Indemnification Recovery practice, led a team charged with the enforcement of patent indemnification provisions in close to 300 complex patent infringement litigations and pre-litigation cases, resulting in the diversion and recovery of millions of dollars for his clients.
  • Worked with Fortune 100 companies to develop and implement comprehensive intellectual property strategic plans and procedures to create and extract value from intellectual property assets.
  • Worked as acting general counsel with a start-up client to secure worldwide patent and trademark rights and to successfully launch an international telecommunications system for underdeveloped countries.
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Experience

  • As leader of BakerHostetler’s Indemnification Recovery practice, led a team charged with the enforcement of patent indemnification provisions in close to 300 complex patent infringement litigations and pre-litigation cases, resulting in the diversion and recovery of millions of dollars for his clients.
  • Worked with Fortune 100 companies to develop and implement comprehensive intellectual property strategic plans and procedures to create and extract value from intellectual property assets.
  • Worked as acting general counsel with a start-up client to secure worldwide patent and trademark rights and to successfully launch an international telecommunications system for underdeveloped countries.
  • Negotiated a complex critical trademark transition rights agreement in a multibillion-dollar merger.
  • Represented a start-up in developing and bringing to market a new class of insurance products.
  • Represented various clients in sponsorship and naming rights deals involving teams and facilities associated with the NBA, NHL, NFL, MLB, NASCAR and universities.

Recognitions and Memberships

Recognitions

  • The Best Lawyers in America®
    • Georgia: Patent Law (2015 to Present)
    • Georgia: Technology Law (2019 to Present)
  • Chambers USA: Intellectual Property in Georgia
    • Band 4 (2021 to 2022)
  • Managing Intellectual Property "IP Star" in Georgia
  • IAM Patent 1000: The World's Leading Patent Practitioners
    • Georgia: Recommended for Patent Prosecution (2019 to 2021)
  • Legal 500 USA (2021)
    • Recommended Patents: Litigation (full coverage) (2021)
    • Recommended Patents: Prosecution (including re-examination and post-grant proceedings) (2021)

Memberships

  • State Bar of Georgia
    • Intellectual Property Section
    • Technology Law Section

Prior Positions

  • Baker & Hostetler LLP: Partner-in-Charge, Atlanta office (2014, 2015)
  • Woodcock Washburn LLP: Managing Partner, Atlanta office (2010 to 2013)
  • Cingular Wireless: Chief Intellectual Property Counsel
  • BellSouth Corporation
    • Chief Patent Counsel
    • Founding Officer of BellSouth Intellectual Property Group of Companies

Admissions

  • U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Registration No. 35,429
  • Georgia
  • Pennsylvania

Education

  • J.D., George Mason University School of Law, 1989
  • B.S., Electrical Engineering, University of Notre Dame, 1982, cum laude