Razor USA LLC is the exclusive distributor of Razor scooters, electric scooters, bicycles and accessories in the United States and most of the world. The privately held company is based in Cerritos, Calif., where about half of its 80 employees work.
Razor USA was founded in 2000 by CEO Carlton Calvin and JD Corp., the Taiwanese company that produces the scooters. The company employs about 40 people at its large warehouse in Rialto, Calif. When the company launched its original Razor scooter 13 years ago, it sold 5 million in six months.
General counsel John Cochrane said Razor is “an amazingly lean ­corporation. People are surprised by how small we are for the visibility we have.” He may expand the legal department, he said, but for now it’s just him. He works without a secretary or paralegal. “I feel valued and I’m serving a useful purpose,” he said. Lately, he’s been focusing on regulatory issues and testing protocols for Razor scooters. Depending on whether scooters are classified as toys or sports equipment, they must meet different safety standards and bear different user instructions.
Razor USA taps Mayer Brown’s Washington office for regulatory work, which often means Consumer Product Safety Commission matters. London-based Field Fisher Water­house handles European toy-safety issues. Bowman and Brooke ­tackles products liability matters, and the Livingston, N.J., office of Morgan Melhuish Abrutyn handles products liability defense. Knobbe Martens Olson & Bear is tapped for trademark and patent work. Irell & Manella handles intellectual property litigation and Kirkland & Ellis is on call for corporate matters and some litigation.
ROUTE TO THE TOP
Before joining Razor, Cochrane was a business litigator in private practice in Southern California. A former colleague recommended him for the first in-house counsel job at Razor, initially a part-time opportunity.
Cochrane was intrigued by the work and the flexible schedule, which would allow him to coach his son’s Little League team.
Before launching his solo practice, he was a partner in Jones Day’s Los Angeles office and at Jackson DeMarco Tidus Peckenpaugh of Irvine, Calif.
Cochrane is Razor’s first and only general counsel, a position he’s held since 2001, a year after the company was founded. He said that he never has a “typical” day. He works as a liaison between the company and regulatory bodies in the United States and overseas. He also reviews contracts between Razor and distributors and insurance companies and coordinates the company’s extensive outside counsel list. He provides daily updates to Razor’s COO, Ryan McLean, and its CFO, Larry Rosolowski, on regulatory matters and outside counsel issues.
A baseball fan, Cochrane follows the Los Angeles Angels and, this year, the Los Angeles Dodgers. He and his wife, Joanne Frasca, a litigation partner at Freeman, Freeman & Smiley, are the parents of Tommy, 21, a college student, and Alison, 28.
LAST BOOK AND MOVIE
The last book Cochrane read was Stephen Carter’s “The Violence of Peace: America’s Wars in the Age of Obama.” The last movie he saw was “Gravity,” the science fiction thriller starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney.