Watts II, Jerald (Jerry) L.

jerald-watts-sm

Mr. Watts concentrates his practice in the area of corporate law; mergers; acquisitions and dispositions; trademark law; real estate leasing; joint ventures; franchising; non-profit organizations and general contract law. Mr. Watts has substantial experience representing early growth and established business clients in connection with a variety of their needs. He assists start-up clients with the development of the legal framework for their business structure and business relationships, which frequently includes choice of entity, joint ventures, franchising and protection of trademarks and other intellectual property interests. Mr. Watts has extensive experience assisting mature business clients in various types of business relationships and transactions, including licensing of products and technology, dispositions and acquisitions.

Mr. Watts enjoys assisting his clients in developing and protecting their trademark portfolios. He is well versed in the prosecution of trademarks as well as defending trademarks through opposition and cancellation proceedings. Mr. Watts successfully represented two private individuals in defending against an opposition proceeding initiated by the University of Alabama and Mr. Paul W. Bryant, Jr., which opposition  included an appearance before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board at the United States Patent and Trademark Office. A full copy of the TTAB’s favorable opinion can be viewed at the following link: Opinion.

Mr. Watts also enjoys representing his clients in connection with the acquisition and disposition of their businesses.  Mr. Watts has served as lead counsel or co-lead counsel for transactions exceeding $600 million in the aggregate, including:

  • $82 million disposition of majority interest in services business to private equity firm
  • $80 million disposition of majority interest in manufacturing and retail sales business to private equity firm
  • $70 million disposition of cold storage business
  • $67 million acquisition of beverage distributorship
  • $50 million acquisition of wholesale business
  • $45 million disposition of majority interest in internet based services business to private equity firm
  • $36 million disposition of majority interest in services business to private equity firm
  • $32 million acquisition of  beverage distributorship
  • $32 million disposition of industrial manufacturer
  • $16 million disposition of demolition business
  • $12 million disposition of commodities procurement facility to private equity firm
  • $10 million division of family held wholesale business
  • $10 million acquisition of manufacturing business
  • $9 million acquisition of distribution business
  • $8 million acquisition of distribution rights
  • $6 million disposition of automobile dealership
  • $5.5 million disposition of medical practice
  • $5 million disposition of retail services business
  • $5 million disposition of veterinary services business
  • $3.5 million disposition of veterinary services business
  • $2 million acquisition of franchise restaurants
  • $2 million acquisition of interest in distribution business
  • $2 million spin-off of portion of timber business
  • $1+ million acquisition of transportation business
  • $1 million disposition of medical practice
  • $400,000 disposition of auto painting business
  • $375,000 disposition of fast food restaurant business
  • $250,000 acquisition of food distributor

Mr. Watts is a member of the State Bar of Georgia Sections on Business, Corporate Counsel, Franchise and Distribution Law, Intellectual Property, and Taxation Law. Additionally, Mr. Watts is a member of the American Intellectual Property Law Association and a Barrister with the Columbus Inn of Court.

Mr. Watts is a Past-President of the Columbus Bar Association,  and current serves as a Trustee and Treasurer of the Columbus Lawyers Educational Foundation.  Mr. Watts is also a Past-President of Columbus Area Habitat for Humanity and past Chairperson of Open Door Community House.

Mr. Watts and his family attend Trinity Episcopal Church, where he previously served as a member of the Vestry of the Church.

After graduating from the University of Virginia with a B.A. in economics, Mr. Watts attended the University of Georgia where he obtained his Masters of Business Administration and Juris Doctor, cum laude.

Contact

Jerald (Jerry) L. Watts II
(p) 706-243-5624 | (f) 706-243-0417 | jlw@psstf.com | Download vCard

Jill Anderson (Assistant)
(p) 706-243-4062 | (f) 706-243-0417 | lja@psstf.com | Download vCard

Education

  • University of Virginia (B.A., 1991)
  • University of Georgia (J.D./M.B.A., with honors, 1996)

Bar Admissions

  • Georgia

Professional Activities

  • Columbus Bar Association (Executive Committee 2010-2016, Past-President)
  • Columbus Lawyers Education Foundation, Inc. (Board of Trustees, Treasurer)
  • American Intellectual Property Law Association
  • Columbus Inn of Court

Civic Activities

  • Trinity Episcopal Church (Former member of The Vestry)
  • Valley Interfaith Promise
  • Columbus Area Habitat for Humanity (Board, 2008-2015, Past-President)
  • Open Door Community House (Board, 2001-2011, Past Chair)