I operate at the intersection of innovation, technology and the law, serving as a strategic advisor to entrepreneurs and emerging growth companies of all stages.

About Dave

David Young is a co-founder of Cooley’s Santa Monica office and represents emerging growth companies at all stages, as well as the venture capital firms, strategic investors and investment banks that finance these companies. In addition to providing strategic counseling, his practice encompasses venture capital financings, mergers and acquisitions, public offerings, equity compensation matters, strategic counseling, complex corporate partnering transactions and corporate governance. He represents both public and private companies, primarily in the digital media, software, technology, cleantech, life sciences, consumer products and media and entertainment sectors, and also frequently represents venture capital firms and other investors in financings.

Dave's experience includes representation of companies and investors in over 1,200 venture capital financings and over 150 M&A transactions. His core practice consists of representing companies in venture capital financing transactions, which have involved a wide variety of leading venture capital firms, strategic investors and angel investors. In recent years Dave has represented companies and investors in over 100 financings annually, ranging from numerous seed financings to larger financings of companies such as Atom Tickets (led by Disney, Fox and Lionsgate), Datascience ($22 million, led by client Whitehart Ventures), Dollar Shave Club ($91 million, led by Technology Crossover Ventures), Fuisz Video (led by Evolution Media Partners), GumGum ($26 million, led by Morgan Stanley Expansion Capital), Hampton Creek ($90 million, including client Velos Partners), HomeHero ($23 million, led by Graham Holdings), Soothe ($35 million, led by Riverside Companies), ThredUp ($81 million, led by client Upfront Ventures), Vice Media ($50 million, led by Raine Group and WPP) and Within ($13 million, led by Andreessen Horowitz). He also has significant experience representing investors in venture capital financings, and his clients have ranged from (i) Southern California-based funds such as Anthem Venture Partners, B Capital, Clearstone Ventures, Crosscut Ventures, Cycad Group, DFJ Frontier Fund, Global Eco Ventures, March Capital, Odyssey Venture Partners, Rincon Ventures, Rustic Canyon Ventures, Prism Ventureworks, Shelter Capital, Shepherd Ventures, Smart Technology Ventures, Steamboat Ventures, Steelpoint Capital, Upfront Ventures, Velos Partners, Wavemaker Ventures, Whitehart Ventures and Zone Ventures, (ii) funds based in Silicon Valley or elsewhere such as Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Hambro-Grantham, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Nauta Capital, OVP Venture Partners, Square Peg Capitaland TA Associates, and (iii) strategic investors across various industry segments, including media (such as The Associated Press), entertainment (such as Steamboat Ventures/Disney and Universal Music Group), technology (such as QUALCOMM and Technicolor) and life sciences (such as Corixa).

Dave's mergers and acquisitions experience includes the representation of numerous companies in sell-side transactions, constituting successful liquidity events for his clients. He has represented QUALCOMM (QCOM) in numerous acquisition transactions and has also represented significant acquirors such as Accrue Software (ACRU), AWR, Corixa (CRXA), Deluxe Laboratories, Inc., Green Dot Corporation (GDOT), HearMe (HEAR), JDA Software Group (JDAS), KOR Electronics, QAD (QAD), Soothe, Ushio and Yahoo! (YHOO). Notable recent sell-side M&A transactions include the representation of:

  • Dollar Shave Club in its acquisition by Unilever for a reported $1 billion
  • AWR in its acquisition by National Instruments
  • Beachmint in its business combination with Lucky Magazine, a division of Conde Nast
  • BidSync in its acquisition by Parthenon Capital
  • Docstoc in its acquisition by to Intuit
  • Engrade in its $50 million acquisition by McGraw-Hill
  • Inktank in its $190 million acquisition by Red Hat
  • Melon in its acquisition by DAQRI
  • Shift Labs in its $50 million acquisition by Brand Networks
  • StyleHaul in its acquisition by RTL Group, valuing StyleHaul at $151 million 
  • TicketMob in acquisition by Cvent

Dave also regularly represents companies owned or funded by private equity firms. Examples include, Casamba (ABRY Partners), General Displays & Technologies (joint venture between GE Equity and Tatung Corp.), Mathnasium (Symmetric Capital), Soothe (Riverside Companies) and Up Entertainment (InterMedia Partners).

Dave has represented issuers and underwriters in numerous IPOs and other public offerings, including companies such as Aastrom Biosciences, Inc. (ASTM), Corixa Corporation (CRXA), GeoCities (acquired by YHOO), JDA Software Group, Inc. (JDAS), Nextel International, Inc., Nventa Biopharmaceuticals Corporation (NVN), Onvia.com, Inc. (ONVI) and Pericom Semiconductor Corporation (PSEM). Managing underwriters he has represented in these offerings include Goldman, Sachs & Co. and Credit Suisse First Boston.

Prior to joining Cooley as a co-founder of its Santa Monica office, Dave was a partner at DLA Piper, serving as the chair of its Corporate and Finance Group for its Los Angeles, San Diego and Phoenix offices.  Prior to that, after spending time working with emerging companies in San Diego, Silicon Valley and Seattle, Dave was a founder of the Los Angeles office of Venture Law Group. 


University of Southern California Gould School of Law
JD, 1995

University of Southern California
MBA, 1995

Pomona College
BA, 1991

Rankings and accolades

Chambers USA: Startups & Emerging Companies – Nationwide (2016 – 2024)

Chambers USA: Venture Capital – California (2021 –2024)

Chambers USA: Venture Capital – California: Southern (2021 – 2023)

Los Angeles Business Journal: Top M&A Dealmakers (2011)

Los Angeles Business Journal: Most Influential Lawyers: Digital Media and E-Commerce Law (2014)

Re/Code: Power Player of LA Tech (2014)

Daily Journal: Top Emerging Companies Lawyers (2014)

Legal 500: Key Lawyer: M&A/Corporate and Commercial: Venture Capital and Emerging Companies (2020)