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Erich Andersen

Vice President and Deputy General Counsel, Microsoft

Erich Andersen is Vice President and Deputy General Counsel for Microsoft Corporation with responsibility for leading the company’s Intellectual Property Group, which is part of Microsoft’s Legal and Corporate Affairs Department.

In his role, Andersen is focused on maintaining and growing Microsoft’s highly rated patent, trademark and copyright portfolios. His teams work to obtain IP protections to safeguard and fund Microsoft’s $11.4 billion a year R&D investment, including more than 60,000 issued patents. He also oversees the company’s patent licensing program, which encourages and facilitates mutually beneficial business collaboration. To date, the company has signed more than 1,200 patent licensing agreements, and has spent more than $4 billion over the past decade to license patented inventions from others.

Andersen joined Microsoft in 1995, and has worked very closely with the Microsoft business groups over the years on legal, regulatory, technical and policy issues, handling many of the company’s strategic relations with partners. Andersen has traveled extensively in Europe and Asia during his time with the company and was based in Paris, France from 2006 – 2009, where he led the EMEA legal and government affairs team. He previously held the positions of Vice President & Deputy General Counsel for the company’s Office and Windows product divisions.

Before joining Microsoft, Andersen served as a law clerk for Judge Diarmuid F. O’Scannlain of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Portland, Oregon and the Honorable James P. Churchill of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. He began his law practice with Davis Wright Tremaine in Seattle, Washington.

Andersen graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) in 1986 and from the UCLA School of Law in 1989.