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James Brelsford’s tumultuous ride on the dot-com rollercoaster hasn’t scared him away from startups. Last month he left Jones Day to become general counsel of Mforma Group Inc., which provides games and subscription information services for mobile phones. For Brelsford it’s a return to the in-house life. In 2000 he left Perkins Coie for [email protected], a provider of cable-based Internet access, only to see it slide into bankruptcy the following year. He subsequently joined Jones Day as a partner in 2002. “I was missing the excitement and fun and challenge of being closer to the business,” Brelsford said. He was also intrigued by Mforma’s mobile content business. The next generation of the Internet is moving to a mobile wireless platform, he said, and there’s “excitement at being in the front end of that.” Brelsford is involved in licensing, distribution, intellectual property, employment and international tax and corporate structuring. This month Mforma inked deals with Billboard and CBS Sportsline.com, gaining access to music, top 10 charts and fantasy baseball games for its mobile content. And in December the company won licensing rights to use Marvel comic book characters in its games. It’s a different sort of company than [email protected], and a different kind of job. Brelsford was senior vice president of business development at Excite. At Mforma, Brelsford said he has an opportunity to expand the company’s law department, which currently consists of one other full-time attorney and a part-time lawyer. The 4-year-old company will soon be moving its headquarters from Bellevue, Wash., to San Francisco. While the economy has stabilized since the dot-com era, Brelsford says the frenetic pace of working in-house hasn’t changed. “It is easily four times as much work,” he said. “I’m working 12 to 14 hours a day, 6 to 6 1/2 days a week.”

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