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Penningtons Manches Cooper

Work 0118 982 2640
Fax 0118 982 2641

Justin Starling

Work 0118 982 2646
Penningtons Manches LLP

Work Department



Partner in the corporate team dealing with all types of corporate transactional and advisory work, including domestic and international disposals and acquisitions, venture capital, joint ventures and reorganisations.


Trained Frere Cholmeley Bischoff; qualified 1994; assistant solicitor Sinclair Roche & Temperley 1994; assistant solicitor Baker & McKenzie 1997; partner Speechly Bircham 2001; partner Manches LLP 2005; partner Penningtons Manches LLP 2013 to date.


Cottenham College, Cambridgeshire; University of Birmingham (1990 LLB 2(1)); College of Law, Guildford (1991 LSF).

London: Corporate and commercial

Venture capital

Within: Venture capital

The 'outstanding' team at Penningtons Manches Cooper provides 'prompt, thorough and commercial' advice to investees  and investors across a range of fundraising transactions from start-up and pre-seed funding through seed and angel funding to large institutional syndicate investments. Justin Starling  has an excellent reputation in the technology and life sciences sectors (including university spin-out work); he recently advised DiffBlue, an artificial intelligence start-up spun out of Oxford University, on its £17m Series A funding round. David Tighe and James Went provide 'clear and actionable advice' with both recently acting for leading equity crowd funding platform Seedrs on its new funding round with a follow on investment of £4m by Woodford Investment Management. Rob Hayes handles a significant volume of deals across the South East and London including on behalf of Business Growth Fund and Touchstone Innovations plc.

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South East: Corporate and commercial

Corporate and commercial: Thames Valley, Berks, Oxon, M4/M40

Within: Corporate and commercial: Thames Valley, Berks, Oxon, M4/M40

The ‚Äėexcellent and commercial‚Äô team at¬†Penningtons Manches Cooper¬†is recommended as being ‚Äėunfailingly prompt and thorough in their responses, giving clear and actionable advice‚Äô and ‚Äėgood at understanding business context‚Äô. The team has a track record of advising growth companies, with strong relationships with Touchstone Innovations and Oxford University Innovation. The practice is also noted for its work on high-profile venture capital and spin-out transactions; recent highlights include¬†Rob Hayes¬†advising Veryan Holdings on its equity investment from a syndicate of institutional investors and debt financing from Silicon Valley Bank and David Tighe¬†acting for equity crowd-funding platform Seedrs on its new funding round with a follow-on investment by Woodford Investment Management. Life sciences continues to be another area of specialism for the firm in the Thames Valley; technology and life sciences expert Will Axtell¬†advised the management team of Timico on a ¬£50m investment from Lyceum Capital and Chris Shelley¬†advised the shareholders of¬†Oxford Gene Technology on its acquisition by Sysmex Corporation. Other key figures in the team include James Went, Nicola McConville, Justin Starling]¬†and Joanne Vengadesan.

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