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Software License Due Diligence in M&A Deals: Evaluating Open Source and Other Software Assets

Recording of a 90-minute premium CLE webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Thursday, February 22, 2018

Recorded event now available

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This CLE course will provide guidance for M&A counsel on conducting software license due diligence before closing the deal. The panel will explain key considerations when evaluating open source and other software assets and discuss best practices to mitigate the risk of acquiring software assets whose liability risks outweigh their value.


Identifying and valuing IP rights is crucial in M&A deals involving software. The complexity of software licenses, particularly with open source software, creates challenges for counsel in evaluating whether licenses should and can be transferred as part of an asset acquisition or divestiture.

Counsel to buyers want to make sure clients avoid unknowingly assuming the target’s software risks, such as reciprocal licenses or deficient code. They also want to ensure that the deal accurately reflects the true value of the target’s software. Counsel to targets want to leverage proprietary software to increase value and make the target more appealing to buyers.

Software due diligence is an important aspect of deal structure planning and key to protecting the legal interests of buyers and targets.

Listen as our panel discusses key aspects of software license due diligence in asset acquisitions and divestitures, focusing on important license provisions, case studies, and deal specific issues. The panel will identify best practices for risk assessment and risk mitigation.



  1. Types of transactions
  2. Important license provisions
  3. Case studies
  4. Deal specific issues
  5. Assessing the risks
  6. Risk mitigation strategy


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What happens when the license is silent on the issue of assignability?
  • What are key software due diligence success factors?
  • How should counsel structure M&A deals to reduce software license compliance risks?


Barnett, Christopher
Christopher Barnett

Senior Attorney
Scott & Scott

Mr. Barnett represents clients in a variety of business, intellectual property and IT-related contexts, with matters...  |  Read More

Scott, Robert
Robert Scott

Managing Partner
Scott & Scott

Mr. Scott is the managing partner of Scott & Scott, LLP a leading law and technology services firm serving the...  |  Read More

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