Senior Counsel, Transactional Law Group

United States of America, California, South San Francisco

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We are a team of highly collaborative and collegial transactional attorneys, seeking a strategic, experienced transactional attorney with a passion for and expertise in structuring, drafting and negotiating complex licensing and strategic transactions.

To be successful in this role, you must have the ability to anticipate and assess legal and business risks associated with complex transactions and also possess a strong aptitude for learning new science and technologies.  You should be able to clearly and concisely communicate well-reasoned recommendations to senior executives and business stakeholders. In addition, you should be comfortable with calibrating and advising on acceptable levels of risk commensurate with broader business objectives.  Finally, you will be expected to develop and recommend innovative solutions to complex legal and business issues.

You must be able to work closely and independently with stakeholders in research, development, manufacturing, regulatory, finance, tax and commercial teams.  You should feel comfortable leading cross-functional teams and managing competing objectives and demands from a variety of stakeholders.  Finally, you should possess strong leadership, communication and interpersonal skills.


  • Structuring, drafting and negotiating in-licensing and out-licensing of patents and know-how, mergers and acquisitions and other strategic transactions, including research collaborations focused on a particular target, drug candidate, technology platform or other drug discovery modality. 
  • Partnering with cross-functional representatives of various departments on transactions, in particular working closely with patent attorneys and agents on diligence, FTO and upstream licensing considerations.
  • Managing outside counsel in complex transactional matters.
  • Advising on complex business and legal issues in support of collaborations with outside partners; working closely with Alliance Management to support the business objectives of a collaboration, interpret contractual provisions and negotiate and support termination and wind-down of a collaboration.
  • Developing and maintaining strong working knowledge of licensing provisions, drug discovery and development, and manufacturing (large and small molecules).
  • Contributing to cross-functional or departmental projects and teams.
  • Mentoring and supervising contract professionals, including providing training and development of templates and fallback provisions.


  • JD with appropriate state license OR registered in-house counsel for relevant state
  • 7 or more years of relevant practice experience in the practice of licensing, corporate securities, and/or litigation, with at least 2 years experience in a law firm;
  • Demonstrated experience in resolving challenging legal issues and ability to deliver sound, clear, practical legal advice in a business setting;
  • Good judgment and excellent writing, communication, and interpersonal skills;
  • Outstanding communication skills, both verbal and written;
  • Superior client relations skills;
  • Ability to multi-task with ease;
  • Ability to work both in a team and independently;

Preferred Requirements include:

  • Biology/chemistry undergraduate/graduate degree;
  • 3+ years of experience
    • licensing in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology or other life science industry; and/or
    • in mergers and acquisitions in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology or other life science industry; and
  • 2+ years in-house experience in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology or other life science industry

Critical Competencies:

Strategic Transactional Law Expert: In a high impact environment, you will distinguish yourself as a strategic transactional law expert and inspire the confidence of your colleagues by:

  • Providing strategic, well-reasoned and insightful counsel on complex legal and business issues with a focus on providing constructive solutions.
  • Resolving challenging legal issues and delivering sound, clear, practical advice in a business setting.
  • Staying abreast of evolving industry developments and related legislation, regulations and applicable case law developments or government enforcement activities.
  • Facilitating the exchange of best practices and learnings with colleagues in the Legal Department and key business stakeholders.

Adaptive & Results-Oriented Performer: In an innovative and constantly-changing environment, you will provide strong legal and business advice to key stakeholders by:

  • Exhibiting excellent judgment and negotiation skills.
  • Prioritizing and managing an active portfolio of work.
  • Multitasking with ease.
  • Working effectively both in a team and independently; at times, you may be required to manage outside counsel or manage a project as the team lead.

Influential Communicator & Relationship Builder: In a global and complex company, you will be required to hone and/or develop strong soft skills by:

  • Partnering closely with key stakeholders and building strong working relationships.
  • Demonstrating outstanding communication skills, both verbal and written; able to simplify the complex and adapt to varying audiences.
  • Interacting with Legal and business leadership on a wide variety of topics and issues, with the presumption that views will be well-formed, pragmatic and communicated in a cogent and professional manner.

Our Roche Values: Integrity, Courage, and Passion are core to how we want to behave, as individuals and collectively as an organization.

Travel: Some domestic and international business travel required.