Karen has extensive experience in a wide variety of complex technology and intellectual property alliances and transactions. Representative matters include: licensing arrangements; research and development collaborations; joint ventures; strategic alliances and corporate partnering transactions; intellectual property acquisitions and divestitures; manufacture and supply arrangements; distribution and reseller arrangements; co‑marketing alliances; consulting and professional services agreements; and other arrangements involving the commercial exploitation of technology and intellectual property. Karen’s practice also includes providing intellectual property assistance in connection with private equity, M&A and other corporate transactions. Karen is frequently engaged as a guest speaker on topics relating to technology and intellectual property transactions.
- Technology and intellectual property alliances, transactions, acquisitions and divestitures on behalf of Advanced Technology Investment Company, ArthroCare, Black Knight, Blackstone Growth, Brookfield Principal Credit LLC, Cardinal Health, Cardtronics plc, Core-Mark Holding Company, Genstar Capital, Getty Images, GLOBALFOUNDRIES, Gores Holdings, HCL Technologies, Humanity.com, Illumina, Intel, Kainos Capital, Lee Equity Partners, MarketAxess Holdings, Marlin Equity Partners, Maxim Integrated, Micron Technology, Orix USA, Panasonic, PDL Biopharma, Pioneer Hi-Bred International (a DuPont company), Prism Medical Products, LLC, The Progeria Research Foundation, Providence Equity Partners, Providence Strategic Growth Partners, Silver Lake Sumeru, Snow Phipps Group, TCV, Texas Instruments, TimeClock Plus, Thompson Street Capital Partners, Topgolf International, Inc., TPG, Trimble Navigation, Trive Capital, United Way, Vonage and Wind River Systems.
- Research and development collaborations involving technology companies, universities (such as California Institute of Technology, Carnegie Mellon University, Harvard, MIT, Stanford, Texas A&M and University of California) and research institutions (such as National Institutes of Health).
Karen is actively involved with the Firm’s diversity and pro bono efforts. She is also Co-Chair of the Firm’s Philanthropic Committee and Co-Chair of the Weil Legal Innovators Program Steering Committee. Karen handles pro bono work for, and serves on the Board of Directors of The Progeria Research Foundation. She has been for several years, Co-Chair of Legal Aid Society of San Mateo County’s annual awards event (its largest annual fundraiser).
Karen is widely recognized in the industry. She is ranked Band 1 for Technology: Transactions in California by Chambers USA, where clients describe her as “in the top tier of practitioners in the field” and “exceptionally strong…very balanced and very collaborative.” She has the ability to “cut through and find areas of compromise” in major M&A deals and is “a superb drafter and negotiator.” Karen has been recommended for Technology Transactions and Patents: Licensing by Legal 500 US 2010-2021, where clients note she is “outstanding in legal knowledge and experience” and “one of the best drafters in the business.” She has also been named an “IP Star” by Managing Intellectual Property IP Stars 2013-2021. Among Karen’s recent accolades, she was shortlisted in the “Best in Technology” category for Euromoney Legal Media Group’s Americas Women in Business Law Awards for 2020, named among “The World’s Leading IP Strategists” by IAM Strategy 300 2017-2020 and among the “Top 250 Women in IP 2017” by Managing Intellectual Property. The Recorder named Karen a “Trusted Advisor” for technology transactions in 2016 and 2017. She was named by The Silicon Valley Business Journal as one of Silicon Valley’s 2015 Women of Influence and was named to the Daily Journal’s 2017 list of “Top 100 Lawyers in California.” Karen was also named to the Daily Journal’s 2014 - 2016 lists of Top Women Lawyers in California, with the publication noting “When Weil represents major technology giants in high-value corporate transactions, the firm calls on Ballack to handle the complex intellectual property aspects of the deals.” She has also been included in The Recorder’s 2013, 2015 – 2017 lists of Women Leaders in Technology Law, which recognizes women lawyers who have demonstrated leadership and expertise in solving the most pressing legal concerns in the technology sector. Karen has also been named among Lawdragon’s 2017 and 2018 “500 Leading Lawyers” lists. In addition, Karen is included in IAM Licensing 250’s “World’s Leading Patent & Technology Licensing Lawyers,” IAM Patent 1000’s “Global Leader Guide” and IAM Patent 1000’s “World’s Leading Patent Practitioners.”