Karen Yuen is a general business and transactional attorney, the bulk of whose work involves advising privately and publicly owned businesses in the wine industry. These matters range from complex real estate and corporate transactions, including acquisition and disposition of wineries, vineyards, inventory, and brands, to general real property, corporate and tax matters, and general operations. With respect to the latter, Karen assists her wine clients in negotiating joint ventures, financings (from both the borrower’s and the lender’s perspective), grape purchase agreements, production agreements, and a range of other agreements, including those involving trademarks and licensing.
Her transactional practice is a natural extension of her mergers and acquisitions work. She negotiates the transaction and develops sophisticated, innovative strategies to help deliver her clients’ unique objectives and business needs. In conjunction with a purchase, she advises clients on how to hold and manage the business and assets. With respect to wineries, clients range from those who own their facilities and vineyards to virtual wineries that require advice on their relationships with vineyard managers, grape sources, and custom crush facilities. With respect to growers, Karen advises them on their relationships with vineyard managers and wineries.
Karen also advises clients on mergers and acquisitions in non-wine industries, and provides a similarly broad range of legal services, such as restating operating agreements, general corporate counseling, and other matters. Clients in this category have included real estate developers.
Her approach combines the practicality of a trained accountant, which she is, with the strategic thinking and trusted expertise of an attorney with considerable experience in family-owned, multigenerational businesses. She has developed numerous structures to help align business goals between the parties to a transaction, and handles generational and family ownership situations in which varying degrees of interest and operational expertise are harmonized in order to develop a favorable outcome for all stakeholders.