Leveraging the firm’s strong banking and finance capacity, the fintech practice at Allen & Overy LLP is a popular choice for assistance with technology-related financial products. The team advises start-ups, scale-ups and established financial institutions on a range of matters including data privacy, corporate tech transactions, and financial regulatory issues. The practice is led by counsel Daphne Van Der Houwen, who focuses on financial regulatory matters involving blockchain, payments and PSPs, and Gerard Kastelein, who also heads the firm’s financial services regulation practice and predominantly advises banks and financial institutions. Ellen Cramer-de Jong, head of investment management, advises on funds relating to electronic money institutions, specifically the regulatory licensing aspects.
Fintech in Netherlands
Allen & Overy LLP
Daphne van der Houwen; Gerard Kastelein
Other key lawyers:
Ellen Cramer-de Jong
‘The team is knowledgeable on cutting edge legal innovation throughout multiple jurisdictions, they offer integrated solutions.’
‘Daphne Van Der Houwen has good expertise.’
Remitly Global, Inc
- Advised Airwallex on obtaining a licence in the Netherlands as an electric money institution.
- Advised PayPal on its $50m Series B co-lead investment in Paymob International.
- Advised Remitly Global, Inc. on its $80m acquisition of Rewire.
Dentons has a standout payment service providers practice within fintech, driven by the expertise of team co-head, Arno Voerman, who is described as ‘best in class’ and specialises in e-money, crypto and alternative finance. Fellow co-head Marc Elshof is experienced in data protection and privacy law. The team regularly advises banks, financial institutions, fintech companies and investors on GDPR, licensing applications, and the regulatory elements of commercial agreements related to the fintech and payments space. The firm’s expertise in PSPs is consolidated with experience in PSD2 licensing, as well as a data protection focus, and the firm is regularly appointed to the panels of large domestic lenders.
Arno Voerman; Marc Elshof
‘Best value for money. Technical expertise is brilliant.’
‘Arno Voerman is best in class. Available, pragmatic, excellent and business oriented.’
‘The team is very knowledgeable in the fields of payments, fintech and crowdfunding. They give practical guidance and come up with solutions that work.’
‘Arno Voerman is a very pleasant person to work with, next to his in-depth knowledge of financial services in the fields of payment and e-money services, crypto and crowdfunding platforms.’
- Advising TreviPay on the financial regulatory aspects of the sale of MSTS Tolls to Shell.
- Advising Aegon in relation to the review of its outsourcing documentation and arrangements with an eye to compliance with recent guidelines and requirements from Dutch and European regulatory authorities and GDPR.
- Advising ING on the update of its Binding Corporate Rules to bring them in line with the GDPR and the requirements from the Dutch data protection supervisory authority.
Bird & Bird
Bird & Bird’s financial services regulatory capacity was significantly bolstered by the recent arrival of practice head Gidget Brugman from Eversheds Sutherland (Netherlands) B.V.. With a strong technology sector focus, the firm assists clients with trading platforms, including brokerages, online payment systems, and compliance with financial and payment legislation as well as matters regarding blockchain, open banking and AI. The firm also assists clients with product development and alternative business models alongside regulatory compliance. Brugman, who frequently collaborates with the firm’s international offices, focuses on financial regulatory with a strong tech sector focus; her clients include PSPs, banks, CSPs, and crowdfunding platforms.
Other key lawyers:
Daniëlle van de Vijver
‘Deep fintech knowledge and experience. Pragmatic approach with an eye for proportionality and business success.’
‘Gidget Brugman: Knowledgeable and pleasant to work with!’
Emesa Nederland B.V. (subsidiary of Talpa Network)
Bizcuit B.V. and Bizcuit Payments B.V.
CCV Group B.V.
- Assisted a PSP providing AIS and PIS in the Netherlands with respect to its AML obligations and how to best implement these requirements into its business.
- Provided pan-EU strategic advice on the rollout of an e-money product, particular with respect to the PSD2/GDPR interplay, for a large IT services provider.
- Assisted a large crypto exchange provider on its contract relating to a solution designed to enable parties active in the crypto industry to securely share information relating to certain virtual currency transactions with respect to the Travel Rule.
With access to a strong global network of offices, Clifford Chance’s fintech team handles multi-jurisdictional financial regulatory and banking matters. Specific areas of focus include payments, crypto, brokerage and crowdfunding services, including the associated data privacy, IP and cybersecurity matters. The full-service team acts for clients including fintech companies and start-ups, particularly those involved in payment services and online banking. The team is led by Marian Scheele, ‘an undeniably excellent lawyer’, who specialises in the financial regulatory aspects of fintech, with a strong sector focus on global tech; she advises on new products, licensing and registration, and other corporate matters for fintech clients including M&As.
Other key lawyers:
Nienke van Stekelenburgh; Jaap Tempelman
‘There is a good balance within when sharing tasks within the team. Accessibility is very good. Contact is possible at very short notice. Invoices are well matched to the quality of the work. I felt that this allowed us to get to the goal and destination quickly without fuss. Nienke van Stekelenburgh is always available for the client.’
‘Marian Scheele is an undeniably excellent lawyer who is familiar with the latest discussions, latest documents and draft bills around crypto and legislation in the Netherlands and in Europe. With her knowledge she knows how to discuss the points that matter, peripheral issues are indicated but otherwise left for what they are.’
‘Very knowledgeable and experienced team with good industry knowledge. I am particularly impressed by the team’s ability to handle the most complex cross-border financial regulatory and tech matters in a quick and efficient way.’
‘Marian Scheele really understands the Fintech-industry and our business and can quickly pin down complex issues to their essence.’
ING Bank N.V.
Trade Republic Bank
- Advising FlatexDeGiro, an online stockbroker, in relation to financial regulatory issues, including: its compliance tool; the offering and providing of FlatexDeGiro’s products and services in the context of MIFID and other EU and local legislation; and on contracting, including advice on the agreements FlataxDeGiro enters into with its clients.
- Advising Tencent on financial regulatory issues relating to its EEU payment services, and WeChatPay EU, a subsidiary of Tencent, with obtaining its payment service provider license under PSD2 and its EU passports, as well as with the establishment of its EU headquarters in Amsterdam.
- Advised OKCoin on financial regulatory issues relating to the offering of their services as a crypto exchange in the EU and UK, including on licensing, authorisation and obtaining its registration as a crypto company with the Dutch Central Bank (DNB) in the Netherlands.
CMS, which fields an interdisciplinary team with experience in banking and finance, corporate, capital markets, cyber security and data protection, advises large retail and investment banks, investors and fintech companies with a specific focus on payments and lending, blockchain and digital assets including cryptocurrency, and securities and financing. The payments and lending and crypto/digital assets teams are led by Tessa Penninks and Clair Wermers, respectively. Penninks specialises in new technologies and financial products, with additional regulatory expertise. Wermers focuses on tokenisation, coin offerings, financial instruments and related trading platforms.
Tessa Penninks; Clair Wermers
‘Clair Wermers is a very friendly person and is very ambitious about our project. We like her entrepreneurial mindset as this helps our process a lot to make it fast and efficient.’
‘Clair is a problem-solver. She gives us definite answers to our questions.’
Crowdz Invoice Token
Blocklab/Port of Rotterdam / Tradetrust (EBL token)
Dutch Blockchain Coalition
The Share Council
Rabo Frontier Ventures (FinTech investment fund of Rabobank)
- Advised Crowdz on the financial regulatory aspects in the Netherlands of its innovative platform, the legal classification of Crowdz’s NFTs and the related governance tokens.
- Advise Digital Partners on their partnership with Dutch insurtech ‘Insify’ which is set up as an MGA (authorized agent).
- Advised on the legal aspects of the 2Tokens Roadmap and advising on the impact of the Markets in Crypto-assets (MiCA) Regulation on the Token Roadmap.
NautaDutilh regularly advises existing financial institutions including several key Dutch banks, large tech companies, fintech start-ups and challengers on regulatory compliance as well as market entry concerning new products, online platforms including e-payment systems, online distributions and alternative business models. The practice is led by Larissa Silverentand, who has a focus on fintech investment, payments and lending; Jasha Sprecher, who is experienced in advising on payment services, e-money, securities trading and investments; and Frans van der Eerden, who specialises in capital requirements for financial institutions, assisting payment institutions with licence applications. Joris Willems is a key contact for Dutch banks and has strong experience in the TMT sector.
Larissa Silverentand; Jasha Sprecher; Frans van der Eerden
Other key lawyers:
‘Very committed, pro-active and responsive.’
‘A pragmatic approach and problem solving attitude with in-depth knowledge.’
‘The Fintech practice of NautaDutilh is unique in the Dutch market. We truly see them as our trusted adviser when it comes to Fintech matters and we specifically appreciate their unequalled in-depth knowledge, large team and overall pleasant cooperation.’
‘Jasha Sprecher is an incredibly smart lawyer and above all very pleasant to work with. He thinks along with us a great deal, gives clear and timely advice and is very approachable. Really the go-to lawyer when it comes to Fintech matters.’
‘Larissa Silverentand is a genius. Can’t put it in any other words. She always thinks three steps ahead and knows what we need before we know it ourselves. Great at advising us on Fintech matters and helping us with making more strategic choices, such as approaches towards supervisors.’
‘Nauta are one of the leading law firms in the Netherlands for this work and are our go-to law firm.’
‘The team worked well together. They understood our product and were aware of what needed to be done and where legal support/advice was needed. To make sure we stayed within our budget we got a clear description on hours worked on the project monthly.’
‘NautaDutilh’s Fintech practice is unique within the Netherlands given the breadth and depth of experience of its members. This, I believe, can in part be explained by the fact that the practice is not a ‘standalone’ practice, but embedded in NautaDutilh’s broader Financial Law team, which advises a broad range of clients in the financial sector. As a result, NautaDutilh’s Fintech practice is able to both deep dive into legal intricacies, while also maintaining the broader market view.’
Bank of America Merrill Lynch
European Merchant Services
Xe (part of Euronet)
Knab (Aegon Bank)
- Assisted Booking.com with obtaining an insurance distribution licence (InsurTech) for one of its group companies, enabling the group to distribute insurance products on its platforms.
- Assisted insurance company a.s.r. with the launch of its new online investment platform for retail investors, offering an investment product to build up capital.
- Assisted Modulr, a fintech focused on servicing B2B payment flows and embedding of payments, in obtaining its electronic money institution (EMI) license from the Dutch Central Bank.
‘Delivering top-notch advice’, Osborne Clarke routinely advises banks and fintech companies on financial services legislation and regulatory requirements, including interacting with the Dutch competition authority, the ACM. The firm specialises in licence applications particularly relating to payment service providers, fintech investment firms and crypto service providers. The practice is led by Johannes de Jong, who specialises in financial regulation of funds, payment services, and alternative finance legislation. Juliet de Graaf also advises trading platforms, fintech service providers and investment funds on financial regulation. Senior associate Anka Langedijk focuses on licence application and notifications for the ACM.
Johannes de Jong
Other key lawyers:
Juliet de Graaf; Anka Langedijk; Gijs Versteegh
‘Osborne Clarke is excellent, driven by its excellent lead partner Johannes de Jong. Johannes has the very rare and exceptional capacity to oversee the broad spectrum of financial legislation necessary for innovative work in this field.’
‘Osborne Clarke Amsterdam has built up a very impressive and loyal client base in the financial industries, both national and international, in a relatively short period of time, and for good reasons. Real value for money.’
‘Johannes de Jong is truly excellent. Highly impressive legal knowledge and skills in many different regulated areas, which sets him apart from practically everybody else in this field in the Netherlands.’
‘Johannes has a thorough understanding of the financial and commercial drivers of his clients and is in excellent communication with regulators.’
‘The FinTech team led by Johannes de Jong is capable of delivering top-notch advice for competitive rates. The team has an outstanding knowledge of the relevant laws and regulations in the FinTech sector and is business oriented. The team’s strong sector focus makes it very easy and pleasant to work with them.’
‘Johannes de Jong is a very sophisticated lawyer. He is able to solve complex legal issues and gives exceptional advice. His knowledge about the relevant laws and regulations in the FinTech sector is great and he is business oriented.’
‘Gijs Versteegh is also worth mentioning here. He has a lot of knowledge about the rules and regulations in the payments industry. Gijs’ advice in that respect is excellent. It is very nice to work with him.’
Banking Circle S.A.
BUX BV and BUX AI BV
CashFlows Europe Ltd
ING Bank N.V.
Match Group LLC
PayPal (Europe) S.à.r.l.
XE Europe B.V.
Banking Circle S.A.
- Advised b2b payment solutions specialist Banking Circle on the financial regulatory aspects of its acquisition of Biller B.V. and assisted with the subsequent acquisition.
- Assisted new client Icoinic BV in the process of obtaining a full scope AIFMD license to manage its crypto assets investment funds; when granted, Icoinic will become the first full scope regulated fund manager in the EU.
- Assisted the Match Group LLC in obtaining a landmark success against ACM to force Apple Inc to change its App Store payment terms following arguments under payments laws.
Described as the ‘go-to experts in the Netherlands for crowdfunding and credit-related questions’, FG Lawyers operates at the cross-section of financial regulatory and corporate matters. The firm advises crowdfunding service providers, as well as crypto providers and fintech investors more widely. The practice is led by Anne Hakvoort and Joost van Hunnik. Hakvoort is highly recommended for her fintech capacity, focusing on regulatory advisory services and platform-driven business models, including blockchain and financial service providers including crowdfunding.
Anne Hakvoort; Joost van Hunnik
‘Focus on fintech and regulators.’
‘Anne Hakvoort – pro-active – on top of things, with up to date knowledge of newest regulatory changes.’
‘Anne Hakvoort is very responsive, concise and extremely knowledgeable. I find her the most dependable Dutch counsel we have.’
2525 Ventures B.V., a.k.a. Litebit
Ageras A/S and Ageras Finance Holding ApS
Bank of China (Europe) S.A., Rotterdam Branch
DELA Coöperatie U.A.
Ebury Partners Belgium NV
Netfin B.V., a.k.a.Finturi
- Advise and assist ZIB Beleggingsonderneming B.V. in preparing for its authorisation from the Authority of the Financial Markets under the European Crowdfunding Service Providers Regulation (ECSPR).
- Assisting DELA in multiple matters, including a joint venture with a consumer credit platform and two investment rounds in a Dutch tech company.
- Assisting NPEX in respect of several particular issues NPEX faced when preparing for the authorisation as a crowdfunding service provider under the European Crowdfunding Service Providers Regulation (ECSPR).
Loyens & Loeff
Loyens & Loeff advises financial institutions, fintech start-ups, scale-ups and investors as well as payment service providers, on a broad range of fintech-related services. The practice leverages expertise across the firm in regulatory, banking & finance, and tax to assist fintech clients with matters including crypto asset services, multilateral trading facilities, payment services and financial regulatory issues. The practice is led by Martijn Schoonewille, Kim Lucassen and Marc Wiggers, and notable senior associates include Wendy Pronk in the financial markets and products team, and Pepijn Pinske advising on corporate tax related fintech matters.
Martijn Schoonewille; Kim Lucassen; Marc Wiggers
Other key lawyers:
Kitty Lieverse; Wendy Pronk; Pepijn Pinske
Ava Labs, Inc.
KEB Hana Bank
Waterfall Asset Management
Simmons & Simmons
Simmons & Simmons has developed a unique focus on cryptocurrencies, advising large crypto exchanges as well as other established financial institutions including banks and investment funds. The firm also has a strong financial regulatory capacity supporting its crypto offering, and regularly advises on the PSD, EMIR and MiFID, as well as the crypto service providers regime including the associated registration requirements. The practice is led by Rezah Stegeman, former supervisor of the Dutch Central Bank and highly experienced in regulatory matters. Associate Koen van Leeuwen specialises in prudential supervision and crypto regulation.
Other key lawyers:
Koen van Leeuwen
- Assisting with and advising Binance, a large crypto exchange, on Dutch law matters.
- Advising Coinbase, a large crypto exchange, on Dutch law matters.
- Assisting with and advising Robinhood, a player in both the securities and cryptocurrency brokerage market, on Dutch crypto regulatory matters.