Law Firms Woo London’s Fintech Scene

By
Rebecca Campbell
March 8, 2017

Top law firms are reaching out to London fintech companies in a bid to develop relationships that could be profitable in the future.

International law firms Slaughter and May and Simmons & Simmons, both with headquarters in London, are keen to woo fintechs by providing services for financial technology companies to take advantage of.

According to Finextra, Slaughter and May is reported to give five fintech startups free legal services amounting to £30,000. These are regtech outfit Enforced, small business banking app Tide, cybersecurity company Garrison, car insurance provider Just Miles, and money transfer service WorldRemit.

Last year the law firm announced that it was opening its doors to its first Fintech Fast Forward programme, with applicants invited from the insurtech, datatech, DLT and regtech sectors.

It’s reported that more than 25 companies applied, seeking services such as legal advice and guidance from experts, and tailored one-to-one coaching on topics such as pitching, presentations, people management, communications and negotiation.

Meanwhile, Simmons & Simmons is launching a fintech and regtech student support programme with London’s Queen Mary University, teaming up with the Centre for Commercial Law Studies (CCLS).

According to Simmons & Simmons, while the fintech industry is expected to disrupt the banking industry, not much has been looked into examining the law and legal implications. It is hoped that the new programme will be able to provide the support and knowledge to educate, which will benefit those in the long run.

The law firm is no stranger to the world of fintech. Last year, it launched a £100,000 fund to deliver free advice to fintech startups, helping to boost the trend of free advice to businesses in need of guidance.

US Law Firms Help Too

It’s not just U.K. law firms that are reaching out to vibrant fintech companies to provide support and guidance, U.S. law firms are too.

In the summer of 2016, it was announced that global law firm Steptoe & Johnson LLP had launched a multidisciplinary blockchain practice to assist blockchain companies and firms that had been affected by legal issues relating to the technology.

Not only that, but a newly formed U.S. coalition, called the Digital Currency and Ledger Defense Coalition (DCLDC), revealed late last year that more than 50 prominent lawyers would help digital currency users, who can’t afford legal services, with pro bono attorney referrals.

As the market continues to increase more law firms are realizing the benefits of helping companies in the growing sector, which they could potentially capitalize on later.

Featured image from Shutterstock.

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