IT and telecoms in South East

Boyes Turner

Based in Reading, Boyes Turner is well-placed to advise early stage tech companies and established names on a broad range of issues. The group has expertise in numerous areas, including funding rounds, commercial contracts, data protection and supply chain issues. Practice head Mark Blunden‘s name is ubiquitous in the market and he is frequently consulted by clients for his international technology expertise. As a recent example, in 2020 Blunden advised Wind River on contractual negotiations with telecoms, defence and automotive companies across the EMEA region.

Practice head(s):

Mark Blunden

Other key lawyers:

Amir Kousari; Kate Eavis

Testimonials

‘A good, cohesive team delivering sound advice combined with a clear understanding as to commercial realities. Many firms offer lip service to this last point, Boyes Turner understand that some compromise is necessary and work with the client to arrive at an optimal position from both a legal and commercial perspective.’

‘Special thanks to Mark Blunden. Obviously he understands the legal landscape but he has an ability to listen and frame problems in a simple, concise manner. His ability to deliver is quite impressive too. Witness his ability to dig a domain name out of a bankruptcy court in America when others had failed.’

Key clients

Innovyze

Wind River

Signal Media

2 Heads Global

Ericsson

Spamhaus

Bedrock Healthcare Communications

AND Digital

Virtualstock

Mobeus

ESP Global

Work highlights

  • Advising 2Heads Global on negotiation of complex IP ownership of background and foreground and associated licensing provisions.
  • Advising Spamhaus on licensing its Data Feed Service which utilizes real-time Domain Name System-based Blackhole Lists to ICANN.
  • Advising Mobeus on its injection of growth capital into Muller EV Ltd, which designs aspirational electric vehicle charge points.

BDB Pitmans

BDB Pitmans utilises its location in the Thames Valley to work with some of the largest and most innovative technology companies in the South East, advising on master services agreements, SaaS terms and corporate reorganisations. The firm also has a strong contentious offering; Phil Smith, promoted to national head of litigation in June 2020, and Tim Clark represent companies in disputes relating to licensing, contractual issues and damages to telecoms networks. Philip Weaver is the key name for commercial arrangements and corporate issues.

Practice head(s):

Phil Smith

Other key lawyers:

Philip Weaver; Tim Clark; Marie Evrard

Testimonials

‘Broad range of corporate services, professional and quick to pick the phone up. ’

‘Take time to understand any issues we bring to them, provide estimated costing up front. Maintain an informed and transparent fee structure.’

Key clients

Sondrel (SOC Solutions) Limited

Big Worldwide Limited

Acuity Risk Management Limited

Fast Lane Consulting and Education Services Limited

Westcoast Ltd

Symantec (now NortonLifeLock)

HUMAX Electronics Co Ltd

Gamma Telecom Ltd

Sol-Tec Ltd

Pegasystems Inc

Work highlights

  • Acted for Sondrel (SOC Solutions) Ltd in a dispute concerning the development of a complex silicon semiconductor chip.
  • Acted for a multi-national software company in a substantial, multi-party dispute with a Caribbean telecoms company.
  • Acted for IT supplier Westcoast on a range of disputes, including over breaches of various logistics agreements and security issues concerning the transfer of high value goods.

Blake Morgan LLP

Blake Morgan LLP's tech offering is truly comprehensive; the team works with tech developers looking to commercialise their products and companies from various sectors seeking to procure and intergrade IT solutions into their businesses. On the non-contentious side Elisabeth Bell and Alison Patten-Hall are the go-to names and provide expertise in complex procurement contracts and licensing agreements. Susie Dryden focuses on disputes, most notably in relation to IT contract disputes and healthcare related issues, as does Jill Bainbridge, who handles cross border IP litigation and arbitration.

Practice head(s):

Alison Patten-Hall; Susie Dryden

Other key lawyers:

Jill Bainbridge; Elisabeth Bell

Key clients

NHS England

HTEC

Cloudhouse Technologies

Osirium Technologies PLC

inHealth Limited

NTT Security UK Limited

Westcoast Group

Druva Europe Ltd

Juriba

The Model T Finance Company (trading as GB Bank)

Wiggle

Work highlights

  • Advised Westcoast on numerous contentious employment matters and large scale workforce restructuring.
  • Acted for the shareholders of CNL Software Limited on the sale to Everbridge Inc.
  • Advised Audioscenic Limited on a further equity funding round.

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

When it comes to tech issues, Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP is a leading firm across the South East. Its practice spans numerous office locations and is therefore able to advise on a broad range of issues including software supply agreements, AI projects and data protection. Sole partner Joanne Vengadesan leads the team from Reading, which also includes senior associate Oliver Kidd, who has developed the firm's relationship with tech companies on the Surrey market from the Guildford office.

Practice head(s):

Joanne Vengadesan

Other key lawyers:

Oliver Kidd

Key clients

Oversight Board

Student Crowd

International Decision Systems Ltd (IDS)

Axian Consulting

Kings College London

Nihilent Ltd

Bank

Rezatec

RazorSecure

Ubisense Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised StudentCrowd on many aspects of data protection compliance.
  • Advising International Decision Systems Ltd on commercial contracts.
  • Advising Kings College London on software development in relation to trial of a product related to psychological support.

Shoosmiths LLP

Shoosmiths LLP has carved out a real niche in the market as the premier firm for tech-related issues in the automotive industry. The team, jointly led by Robin Webb and Sebastian Price, is consulted by several of the world’s most recognisable car companies, including Honda, Renault and Volkswagen, which it assists with issues relating to data monetization, IT procurement and cloud computing. Beyond the automotive sector, the firm advises major retailers, food producers and hospitality companies on all elements of tech integration. At associate level, Andy Pratley specialises in outsourcing and transformation projects.

Practice head(s):

Robin Webb; Sebastian Price

Other key lawyers:

Andy Pratley

Testimonials

‘Shoosmiths has been involved with Aquavista (previously BWML) for around 17 years- this has given a consistent and deep insight into the consumer and business sector within which we operate, coupled to this the scale of operating areas which Shoosmiths has on tap has allowed our broad base of business issues to be dealt with under the one roof.’

‘Whilst not perhaps unique in the sector – we have had some excellent input from Shoosmiths representatives, of note I would point out : Sebastian Price for his patient and supportive input into recent changes constructing 5 and 10 year mooring contracts’

‘A team that are quick to respond and very pragmatic. Conversations don’t start with me being concerned around costs. They know what they are and aren’t capable of and are clear on that. I personally find their regular comms and webinar sessions engaging and I am glad they do them.’

Key clients

Volkswagen Group

Mercedes Benz

Nissan

Renault

Peugeot Citroen Vauxhall

Volkswagen Financial Services

The White Company

Close Brothers Plc

Honda

DHL

Work highlights

  • Advised a global automotive brand on the monetization of connected car data with a leading data monetisation tech company.
  • Advised Peugeot Group HQ in France on the launch of its on-demand mobility as a service operation, Free2Move Rent, in the UK.
  • Advised Scania on its long term procurement of data network services.

Stevens & Bolton LLP

Stevens & Bolton LLP's client base spans both sides of the tech market, as the group acts for large corporates looking to procure IT services, as well as tech solution providers. Advising early stage companies is a key component of the practice; the teams partnership with the University of Surrey’s incubation programme for technology start-ups provides the group with a steady stream of innovative and rapidly developing clients. Beverley Flynn, having taken over as practice head from consultant Beverley Whittaker, handles data protection and supply agreements. Newly promoted partner Charles Maurice supplements his general IT practice with expertise in the sports and automotive sectors.

Practice head(s):

Beverley Flynn

Other key lawyers:

Beverley Whittaker; Gary Parnell; Charles Maurice

Testimonials

‘The lead partner, Beverley Flynn, ensured a smooth transition for me in relation to all open matters, and was accommodating in arranging meetings with a number of key partners at Stevens & Bolton. I have since engaged them on a handful of small matters, all handled competently and efficiently. ’

‘Beverley Flynn (partner) provides sound, practical advice in a down-to-earth, no-nonsense manner. She is extremely efficient and responsive, and instils those qualities in her team. Very impressive.’

Key clients

SecurMed UK

Zest Technology Limited

Belron International

NEP Group Inc.

Unum Limited

HUGHUB

VX Fiber Limited

Bakkavor Group plc

Zenitech Limited

HUB Financial Solutions Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Zest Technology on all of its client contracts in relation to the licensing and support of Zest’s cutting-edge employee benefits platform.
  • Advised VX Fiber on its roll out of FTTP open access networks in the UK.  
  • Advised Unum on its contractual arrangements with Square Health Limited in respect of the GP Health App provided by Square Health to Unum, known as Help@hand.

White & Black Limited

Located in Oxfordshire, White & Black Limited is a boutique that focuses on the technology sector, and is capable of rivalling much larger firms in the region when it comes to the procurement and integration of tech solutions. The team provides specialist expertise in a number of areas, including data protection, cyber security, licensing and commercial contracts. Phil Thompson manages many of the group's key client relationships and assists with multijurisdictional projects, while fellow team lead Matt Johnston's 'knowledge of IT contracts and data protection issues is second to none'.

Practice head(s):

Matt Johnston; Phil Thompson

Testimonials

‘Matt Johnston is an expert in his field with an innate ability to make sense of the technical jargon and turn it into words everyone understands. Pragmatic, commercial and sensible, you know he’ll get the job done properly.’

‘Superb SME. Commercial and pragmatic advice. Do what they say they are going to and within the fee estimate. ’

‘The team have a great balance as lawyers who also understand business. They go the extra mile to offer practical advice to complicated matters, and they have a very deep understanding of the telecom sector.’

‘You know at White & Black, you’re going to get an expert lawyer, someone you can trust to do the job properly and who will always have your best interests. Not only are they experts, but they’re normal people too who speak to you in words you understand.’

‘It is always great to work with Phil Thompson. He has a very good way of explaining clearly, very complicated issues’

‘Matt Johnson. He has a wealth of experience that assists above the merely legal aspects of IT, outsourcing, tendering and contract negotiation. This, with our long working history and so understanding of our company, helps get quickly to the nub of the issue. He is also very approachable and has an incredible turn-around time, with high commercial awareness rather than getting stuck on purely legal issues.’

‘Deep understanding of commercial drivers and pressures particularly in IT and Data Protection.’

‘I have worked with Matt Johnston for years and on a broad range of deals. On every occasion he has been able to provide both thorough legal and risk assessments on each point and a commercially minded view. Besides this, I enjoy working with Matt; he brings a relaxed, personable approach to every conversation and negotiation.’

Key clients

Electricity North West Limited

Mitchells & Butlers Leisure Retail Limited

Universal Music Group Limited

A-Plan Group Limited

Gobsmack Holdings Limited

Healthcode Limited

Genesys Telecommunications Laboratories, BV

Matchesfashion Limited

Virgin Active Limited

Concha Y Toro

Work highlights

  • Advising Electricity North West Limited on its QUEST Project, which is funded by Ofgem under the Network Innovation Competition Initiative.
  • Advised Mitchells & Butlers Leisure Retail Limited on its renegotiation of its guest WiFi arrangement with O2.
  • Assisted Electricity North West Limited with the procurement process for a new system to be provided by Utilisoft, which included the scoring of legal terms and strategic counsel.

Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP

The 'highly professional, well managed and organised team' at Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP advises tech service providers as well as businesses from the health, retail and energy sectors. In recent years the firm has been increasingly active in the fintech and insurtech markets, advising a number of online banks and insurance companies. Managing associate Howard Duckworth is the key practitioner in the region for transactional work, and assists with commercial and data protection issues in the retail and financial services sectors. The group also has a strong contentious offering; Andrew Parsons represents parties in disputes relating to distressed IT projects, contested software licences and website development issues.

Practice head(s):

Alastair Mitton

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Parsons; Howard Duckworth; Sheilah Mackie

Testimonials

‘The team is large and comprises very good practitioners’

‘I have been able to develop an excellent working relationship with Howard Duckworth. Howard has worked with me on QFP’s strategic partner relationships/contracts for a number of years now and – whilst he maintains an appropriate level of impartiality (advice) – he works with me as if he were a QFP insider, able to point out the risks brought by supplier proposals, but proffering pragmatic solutions.’

‘Flexible approach, willingness to vary balance between work carried by firm and that by in-house team even within the same matter.’

‘Excellent culture which fits well with the way our organisation works. Very easy to work with and presents themselves as part of the in-house team working seamlessly with the Legal team and our commercial colleagues. Very fair and efficient with briefing calls, estimates and billing. Provide MI in a very useful way and always seeking feedback to improve ways of working. Excellent all round relationship. ’

‘Howard Duckworth has great technical strength and knowledge which he delivers with an excellent bedside manner. He understands the in-house/ external/commercial dynamic completely and provides user friendly advice with options and recommendations. He has advised on some important, strategic matters (including in relation to a business critical, high value cloud re-platforming for equity release business and time-bound negotiation of an extension, exit and termination of a business critical software development contract providing strategic legal advice, preparing all relevant documentation and helping with a smooth and orderly exit) and he is prepared to roll his sleeves up on smaller matters when needed. He has a calm approach and is totally reliable.’

‘Responsive, accommodating and strong mix of technical legal skills and appreciation of commercial needs and realities.’

‘Attention to detail and very thorough in approach. Strong and up-to-date knowledge of case law and its practical application. Take the time to understand the business and its requirements and therefore how best to approach commercial negotiations.’

Key clients

AIG / American Insurance Group

B&Q

Carnival Corporation plc

G Forces Web Management Limited

Hibu (owner of Yell.com / Yellow Pages)

Historic England (formerly known as English Heritage)

Kingfisher plc / Kingfisher Information Technology Services

Liverpool Victoria Friendly Society / LV=

Ministry of Justice

National Farmers’ Union

NHS Digital

Post Office Limited

Ordnance Survey

Quilter Cheviot

Quilter Financial Services

Quilter plc

Scottish Power

Unicard

Vizion Network Limited

Birketts LLP

Birketts LLP's Chelmsford team works alongside its multiple East Midlands offices to provide software and technology companies of various sizes with assistance regarding IP licensing, hardware procurement and the tech aspects of corporate transactions. Much of the team's work relates to cloud services; in a recent example, Nigel Thompson, who leads the team, helped Commcise Software Limited provide cloud based commission management to investors and brokers by advising on all the necessary commercial agreements. Senior associate Andrea Curtis works alongside Thompson on licensing issues.

Practice head(s):

Nigel Thompson

Other key lawyers:

Andrea Curtis

Key clients

Commcise Software Limited

Compliancy services Limited

Rapid DCS

Kalibrate technology Group Limited

VST Global Limited

Policing Solutions Group

Work highlights

  • Advised Commcise on entering into SaaS agreements with several financial institutions.
  • Assisted Compliancy Services Limited with the delivery of cloud based compliance and training services for financial services companies.
  • Policing Solutions Group on a Master Services agreement to allow use by police and law enforcement agencies of audio analytics software.

Clyde & Co LLP

Clyde & Co LLP's Guildford team, which works closely with its London office, is perhaps the leading firm in the region for technology issues relating to the insurance sector, though the firm is also active in the aviation, higher education and retail markets. Mark Williamson, who leads the technology, outsourcing and data practice nationally, has a client base that ranges from start ups to international household names, which he assists with business outsourcing, data protection, commercial transactions and e-commerce.

Practice head(s):

Mark Williamson

Testimonials

‘The team are quick to respond & very pragmatic. They clearly know the law, but want to help you find a solution rather than just recite the legal text.’

Cripps Pemberton Greenish

Cripps Pemberton Greenish has genuine expertise in almost all areas of the technology market, though fintech, insurtech and AI are some of the firm's key areas. In 2020, the team has been busy assisting clients with issues relating to the covid-19 pandemic; Kathryn Rogers in particular has assist clients with the e-commerce services and remote-working requirements. 'Fantastic partner' Pete Kenyon leads the team and focusses on the commercialisation of software, which includes assisting technology providers and purchasing businesses on the procurement of IT products. Irfan Baluch, having previously worked as a software developer, is perfectly placed to advise tech companies on data protection, SaaS and outsourcing.

Practice head(s):

Pete Kenyon

Other key lawyers:

Irfan Baluch; Kathryn Rogers

Testimonials

‘They really listen and take a lot of time to truly understand the business and what makes it tick or not as the case may be!’

‘Honest even if not what you necessarily want to hear – efficient and not afraid to question you.’

‘The CPG team has a pragmatic approach to problem solving and the individuals that assist our company have demonstrated a great deal of competence throughout.’

‘The team have been very responsive in our dealings. They have first hand experience and knowledge of the software market and their guidance and support had been extremely useful over the last year or so as we have brought new products to market.’

‘We have worked with several parts of the practice most of this support is directed through Irfan Baluch who is extremely knowledgeable. Irfan ensures that the support we receive is aligned to our needs. He was able to provide guidance during early days of COVID on specific Contracts and in shaping difficult discussions on Contracts with Suppliers and Customers.’

‘Bubbly and energetic staff who are always striving to support’

‘Pete Kenyon is a fantastic partner who will happily answer a call anytime to help out and support.’

Key clients

Electroneum

Thortful

Deltatre

OSTC

RDT

Optomany

Holiday Extras

Park IT Solutions

Pixid

Winchester Consulting

Work highlights

  • Advising on the commercialisation of the Alphastream’s cutting edge data experiences platform for the financial services market.
  • Advising Electroneum on the development and rollout of the innovative AnyTask platform.
  • Advising Deltatre on a range of issues, including software development and acceptance testing, service levels, information security, data protection and confidentiality.

Dentons

Dentons is best known for its work with companies outside the tech sector looking to integrate IT into their businesses, though the firm is more than capable of advising technology companies. Nick Harrison, promoted to partner in May 2021, leads the TMT group in Milton Keynes and has advised major companies on the procurement of IT services. In a recent highlight, in 2020 Harrison advised Sainsbury’s with its strategic IT supply arrangement with NCR. Chris White is another name to note, and assists clients from the automotive, financial services and education sectors with their commercial IT needs.

Practice head(s):

Nick Harrison

Other key lawyers:

Chris White

Key clients

Sainsbury’s Group (Sainsbury’s and Argos)

John Lewis Partnership

Royal Mail Group

Sharjah Islamic Bank

Cavendish Online

Cognita Schools

Silverstone Circuits Limited

White Clarke Group

Marshall Motor Group

Appello Careline Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Appello on its agreement with McCarthy & Stone Retirement Lifestyles Limited to install and implement a new IT infrastructure in all of its retirement homes.
  • Advising Sainsbury’s Supermarkets Limited and Argos in continued negotiations with NCR following the successful completion of a Framework Agreement for the supply of hardware and services.
  • Advising Cognita in connection with the entry into contracts with two major infrastructure and device providers.

DMH Stallard LLP

Spanning multiple offices in the South East, DMH Stallard LLP houses 'a full suite of experts covering all disciplines around the sector', and assists technology companies and buyers of IT solutions with procurement, commercial contracts, off-shoring and M&A transactions. Many growing technology companies rely on the firm's ability to work across different practice areas, with the team acting as general counsel for all of the client's needs. Contentious work is led from Brighton by Tim Ashdown, and includes representing technology companies in dispute relating to software copyright and IT development projects. Also in Brighton, Debbie Venn focusses on the travel tech sector. John Yates leads the Gatwick commercial group.

Practice head(s):

John Yates; Tim Ashdown

Other key lawyers:

Debbie Venn

Testimonials

‘Value for money, efficient and approachable’

‘John Yates – easy to work with providing relevant and god value advice’

‘Full suite of experts covering all disciplines around the sector. Very approachable and communicate easily. Just do the important things well. ’

‘A reliable and trustworthy legal partner for our digital marketing agency’

‘Tim Ashdown – credibility, I trust his advice. John Yates – very practical commercial advice.’

Key clients

15below Ltd

Ampito Ltd

BestAtDigital Limited

Canon UK Limited and Canon Europe Ltd

CVR Global LLP

Hadean Supercomputing Ltd

Motoring and Leisure Services Ltd

Object Source LLP

Sunrise Software Ltd

WPM Education Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advising a Major theatrical enterprise on a ticketing technology solution to handle refunds arising from the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • Advising Hadean on the protection of its complex software engines for creation of multiple processing activities and algorithm application in various sectors.
  • Advising Ampito Limited on both contentious and non-contentious issues including contracts, framework agreements, IP ownership, GDPRs and compliance with modern slavery legislation.

Irwin Mitchell

Irwin Mitchell has a stellar list of clients from the legal, media and health sectors which it assists with the procurement and integration of IT services. The firm is also well-versed in data protection, most particularly in relation to AdTech and device fingerprinting. Many of the team have industry experience as well as legal expertise; as an example, Dan Hedley, having previously worked as an IT professional, is well-placed to assist with complex open source licencing issues. Stuart Padgham leads the national commercial team from the Gatwick office and has a specialism in large outsourcing projects.

Practice head(s):

Stuart Padgham

Other key lawyers:

Daniel Hedley; Chris Bridges

Testimonials

‘Dan Hedley is exceptional. He is extremely competent in advising on and negotiating IT and ad tech contracts. This combined with his competency in advising on data protection issues makes him invaluable. He is also very pragmatic and able to get the deal done with very little instruction. Can’t recommend him highly enough.’

Key clients

LzLabs

Nuffield Health

Saga plc

Snowplow Analytics Limited

Moorcrofts LLP

When it comes to open source licensing, Moorcrofts LLP's expertise is truly unmatched in the South East market and is more than capable of rivalling any legal practice in the UK. Head of technology Andrew Katz is known across Europe for his expertise in open source software and open hardware issues, having previously worked as a software developer before entering the legal profession. The group's work has a strong international dimension, and often involves advising Silicon Valley companies on their commercial dealings in EMEA, as well as providing international law firms with specialist expertise in support of various transactions.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Katz

Other key lawyers:

Tim Astley

Key clients

Graphaware

PagerDuty Inc.

MintecLimited

Payara Services Limited

Mathematical Market Research

Biz2Mobile Limited

Genle Ltd trading as “GoToGroup”

Inixion Limited

Grantify

Work highlights

  • Advised Graphaware on the intellectual property and legal framework for their new flagship product “Hume”.
  • Advised PagerDuty Inc. on European deals throughout 2020 and also helped localise template documents.
  • Advised Biz2Mobile on agreements covering the expansion of sales channels and compliance to the OpenChain ISO standard.

Moore Barlow

With team members in Guilford, Richmond and Southampton, Moore Barlow is able to assist clients across the South East in a range of issues including outsourcing, software development, disputes, SaaS licensing and AI compliance. Much of the firm's work is for tech companies in the local area, with innovative companies from the telecommunications, data analytics and telematics, and embedded software frequently consulting the team. Practice head John Warchus is the name to note for commercial agreements while Dorothy Agnew handles data protection and intellectual property issues.

Practice head(s):

John Warchus

Other key lawyers:

Dorothy Agnew; Laurie Heizler; Sarah Crookall

Testimonials

‘I have dealt with John Warchus on a variety of different issues. I have always been impressed with his attention to detail and his analysis of an issue, and how we might best deal with a specific problem. Understanding the law commercially is about practical solutions to legal problems. ’

‘John Warchus was my main contact. He is an experienced tech lawyer, always focused on key issues for the client’

‘Moore Barlow has very experienced partners and associates and offers an outstanding service to local businesses of a nature more difficult to come by in an outer London legal practice. There are specialists in fields such as intellectual property and software/ technology that we find very useful to have to hand so close to our own business, very specialised in technology / internet / scientific information provision to major corporates worldwide. Partners at Moore Barlow have had previous careers in City firms and in litigating and to have them close to hand is excellent for Richmond. ’

‘We work with John Warchus, partner, corporate and commercial and have done so for a number of years. He has advised us on a range of contract types, for our regular and customised professional software and internet based services as well as on patent and intellectual property portfolios, international patent licensing etc. We find him to be an excellent advisor, generous and responsive with his time and diligent in his advice. It has been a great help to us and continues to be so having the Moore Barlow senior partners to hand on our doorstep. ’

‘I was recommended to the Moore Barlow LLP team by a colleague I had worked with historically. My specific request was that he recommend me to a practice that was easy to engage with and would understand that as a start up we would not need to have onerous contracts, particularly as we were engaging with start-up’s ourselves. He had no hesitation in recommending Moore Barlow to me and specifically to Dorothy Agnew, the partner with whom I would need to engage.’

‘The West London Creative Cluster needed a team of broadcast, production, tech and media specialists. Moore Barlow has provided that resource.’

‘John Warchus has assisted our user community; which is primarily located in the broadcast, production, media and tech sector: specifically with solution and platform innovators and StartUps operating out of the Hub. His eye for specific need and detail – which is invariably subjective and different – has filled those StartUps with confidence as they move forward. John has essentially adopted a mentor style approach which has proven invaluable.’

Key clients

Fonteva, Inc.

Wunelli Ltd

Hampshire & Isle of Wight Air Ambulance Service

Transparity

Appitek Limited

Kyocera Engineering UK

Hidalgo Limited

Intellectual Property Online Limited /WebTMS

KTM Online Limited

Q Associates

Corporate Technology Information Solutions Limited

Minesoft Limited

Crave Interactive Limited

NAK Consulting Services Limited

Morgan Innovations & Technology Limited

Hosted Network Services Limited/Sipsynergy Limited

Selected Interventions Limited

Smartlogic Semaphore Inc.

RL Capital Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Fonteva Inc on a software development dispute.
  • Advised Wunelli on an IT outsourcing agreement.
  • Advised the Hampshire & Isle of Wight Air Ambulance Service on IT and software licensing agreements.

Osborne Clarke LLP

Osborne Clarke LLP's Reading office is able to offer a truly full service to technology companies, with the firm assisting with everything from commercial contracts and software development to regulatory issues and litigation. The firm has a particular specialism in private equity deals; Greg Leyshon works on investment transactions for clients in the telecoms sector. Peter Sheppard leads the contentious offering, representing companies based locally and further afield in a broad range of disputes. Anna Williams and Sara Valentine lead the commercial and corporate teams respectively.

Practice head(s):

Anna Williams; Sara Valentine; Greg Leyshon

Other key lawyers:

Peter Sheppard

Key clients

gohenry

Focus Group

Xeretec

Windsor Telecom

Moteefe

TiVo Corporation

Wireless Logic Limited

Onecom

Southern Communications

Management team of Babble

Redwood/ Content Guru

Pinnaca

G3 Comms

Work highlights

  • Advised gohenry, the provider of a financial literacy app and debit card for 6-18-year-olds, on a new contract for payment processing and authorising services.
  • Advised Focus Group and its shareholders and management team, on the sale of a significant minority stake to Bowmark.
  • Advising TiVo on multi-million pound cross-border dispute relating to procurement of a digital entertainment technology system and related technology.

Clayden Law

Technology boutique Clayden Law works with innovative early-stage companies from numerous sectors, though in recent years the group has developed particular expertise in the fintech arena. Based in the Thames Valley, the firm houses specialist expertise in data protection, software development, regulatory and financing issues, often with a cross border element. Piers Clayden , having founded the firm in 2010, continues to advise on tech-related commercial issues in the new media and IT sectors.

Practice head(s):

Piers Clayden

Other key lawyers:

Anna Clayden; Clive Bramley

Testimonials

‘Strengths are domain specialisation (knowledge), accessibility of resource, flexibility in approach, right-size delivery, calm and unfazed commercial negotiation style. Being a small team it doesn’t feel like you are paying for multiple resources when they are not all needed which can be an issue with other companies.’

‘Piers Clayden – Piers and his team have consistently provided quality, right-size advice and their expertise in Technology, SaaS and data privacy have been pivotal to us. I have also worked with Piers through complex client negotiations through which he has always provided a calm approach that gets the right results.’

‘Clayden Law is a practice focused on Information technology, data privacy and cybersecurity law. We are a start up SaaS business and Clayden Law provides services directly relevant to our industry and stage of development – as an added bonus they are also within our geographical area. Clayden Law has directly relevant expertise and experience which ensures that we get the most relevant advice at a great price. Nailing our terms and conditions, order form and maintenance and support SLAs at an early stage will reap significant rewards as we progress.’

‘Clayden Law provided valuable advice guiding us to ensure we had the correct documentation for our business. We also know that Clayden Law will be able to provide advice and support during the next phase of our requirements with documentations such as Shareholders’ Agreement, Privacy Policy and IP to name just a few.’

‘I have worked with Piers Clayden in a previous business so choosing a suitable legal advisor for our SaaS business was not a difficult decision. Piers is very personable, approachable, understanding and is able to communicate issues and explain the potential outcomes in plain English. Piers is flexible in his approach to resolving issues, charges a fair fee for his work, and genuinely wants to support you in your endeavours by being flexible and approachable. Piers is easy to deal with and a great asset to our business, and of course to Clayden Law.’

‘The firm has exceptional knowledge of what would be in the best interest of our company. As COO I often have to try and mitigate against risk and all eventualities and Clayden Law takes this very seriously. They have rewritten many of our contracts to favour our company and ensure we are protected in the right way. We have a good reduced rate compared to other agencies for the level of service we get which we are grateful for. ’

‘Piers’ knowledge of IT is exceptional when it comes to scaling a SaaS business. He thinks before the issues arises what we may need to be covered for and ensures we are protected. He has helped simplify how we deal with our IT clients and create further transparency through our requirements as a business through a legal FAQ for the team. We have completely redesigned our legal way of working and improved efficiency greatly through Piers.’

Key clients

Viewpoint

Open Blend

Sirenum

Weavr

Ixaris

Speik

Risk Decisions

Seagull Scientific

Cloudfabriq

Kin and Carter plc

Work highlights

  • Providing Sirenum with ongoing legal support in relation to its corporate  fundraising activities and commercial work.
  • Assisted Weavr with the implementation of a tax advantaged share option scheme for employees.
  • Provided regulatory advice and commercial support to payment services specialist Ixaris.

EMW Law LLP

EMW Law LLP, a significant presence on the Milton Keynes market, is known for its work with nationally recognisable clients from a number of sectors relating to the procurement and integration technological solutions into their businesses. Matthew Holman, in addition to leading the commercial, technology and data team, is praised by his clients for the 'agile, proactive and pragmatic' way in which he advises on data protection, licensing and contractual issues.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Holman

Other key lawyers:

James Geary; Tariq Sayfoo

Testimonials

‘Simple client interface and excellent handling of requests by the point of contact making it feel like a genuine one-firm organisation. Communication on project work has been good.’

‘Very approachable and a strong desire to understand the nature of my business, what matters to me and how we work. A conversation is never too much trouble and happy to engage in exchange of ideas and options informally without becoming commercial. They have also developed a high level of trust and have been willing to volunteer reduced fees for minor issues where most firms would not.’

‘EMW is a well established and extremely reputable firm that quickly adapted its service provision in light of the global pandemic. I started working with EMW after the first lockdown and have to confess the technology they’ve used to support customers, as well as the flexibility offered by the partners and team, have exceeded my expectations.’

‘Matthew Holman recently provided us with exceptional legal advice to support us during a complex project involving Government and multiple OEMs from our sector. His approach to the matter was agile, proactive and pragmatic, allowing us to contemplate and weigh business risks and effectively negotiate complex arrangements with our collaborators.’

‘As a large TMT business, EMW provides us with expert advice across the whole range of legal issues that affect our business. As our business diversifies, we are able to rely that they will either have the skills in-house to assist with new ventures or be able to help us source other suitably-qualified legal professionals. Our business is very fast paced and EMW can keep up with the volume and diversity of work as well as often very demanding turnaround times.’

‘We currently use EMW in two ways. The first is a secondment, where we have one solicitor working with us 3 days a week on a specific project, and the other is a retainer for contract review and support. EMW make so much effort to accommodate the needs of our business, and their team of solicitors work so well together to get contracts turned around really quickly. They have made a huge difference for us. They have a system of tracking comments so that you understand the concern level of each comment, and internally, they will send the contract to the team with the relevant expertise to make sure all points are covered. ’

‘Each person who has produced work for us has been wonderful to work with. They are responsive, quick to turn work around and genuinely care about our business.’

‘The difference I have found is in the patience to establish an understanding of the business and a relationship with those who they would be working with. To engage a ‘lawyer’ usually comes with connotations of big bills and challenging goal setting, it is daunting for a small business and EMW made this early engagement (often very stressful) really easy and without pressure. ’

‘Knowledge understanding and a real enthusiasm for topics not always hitting the same spot for business were standout characteristics. The ability to give a short view as well as a long detailed set of legal responses, this made decisions easier to make and gain other internal approval. EMW truly work with the team, get to know them (in our case training our GDPR champions). Matthew Holman has become a trusted part of the security team and a friend to the business – he just happens also to be a lawyer.’

Key clients

Motor Insurers’ Bureau

Avara Foods Ltd

Suzuki GB plc

Rightmove plc

Atheon Analytics Ltd

Centresoft Ltd

BFS Group Ltd t/a Bidfood

MHA MacIntyre Hudson LLP

Santander UK plc

Banking Standards Board

Aerospace Technology Institute

Charles Tyrwhitt Shirts Ltd

Supper Ltd

Work highlights

  • Advising Supper Ltd on complex privacy and app development and licensing issues.
  • Advising Suzuki GB plc on relation to technology contracts, litigation, employment and data protection matters.
  • Motor Insurers’ Bureau on technology and data protection3G5 issues.

Paris Smith LLP

Paris Smith LLP works with tech-focussed SMEs, which it advises on IT services contracts, outsourcing, system integration and licensing. Laura Trapnell is the most active partner; with expertise spanning intellectual property and commercial law; Trapnell is able to assists with SaaS provision contracts, data protection and complex IT separation matters. James McNeil leads the commercial practice.

Practice head(s):

James McNeil

Other key lawyers:

Laura Trapnell

Testimonials

‘Laura Trapnell is sensible, commercial and robust when necessary. Good interpersonal skills.’

‘The team possesses substantial in-depth knowledge of IP around cloud and App development alongside of System integration practice and ability to impart that quickly and concisely, dealing with their counterparts with a true understanding and respect meant that contracts particularly around Californian west coast tech IP lawyers were satisfied quickly and with huge benefit to us as a business’

Laura Trapnell for all IP documents creation and the great efficiency in dealing with counterparts for contract negotiations and the commercial understanding on communicating that back to me, along with the speed of response in delivering back any docs required.’

Key clients

Loan Market Association

VisitorChat Limited

Quotall Limited

Squalk Limited

British Friendly Society

University of Southampton Science Park

Autofutura Limited

Gobel & Partners

Datwyler Cabling Solutions Limited

Feefo Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising Visitor Chat in relation to a multi-year international contract for the provision of outsourced live web chat services.
  • Advised British Friendly Society on the revision of the large statement of work governing its IT development and procurement contract.
  • Advised Autofutura Limited on the negotiation and drafting of a complex international Master Services Agreement.

Field Seymour Parkes LLP

Field Seymour Parkes LLP's client base includes technology start ups, large software companies and businesses from outside the IT sector, and spans industries including hardware, cloud computing, mobile technology and logistics. Key practitioner Cathrine Ripley has extensive agreements on the full range of commercial contracts, including those relating to outsourcing, licensing, franchising and software distribution.

Practice head(s):

Cathrine Ripley

Other key lawyers:

Susan Wells

Trethowans LLP

Trethowans LLP established its IT practice with the January 2020 arrival of Julian Hamblin from Womble Bond Dickinson (UK) LLP. Hamblin's experience in the area, particularly with regard to the financial services and retail sectors, has enabled the firm to attract technology companies and businesses looking to procure IT services, which it advises on issues such as data protection, outsourcing and intellectual property in the context of open source software.

Practice head(s):

Julian Hamblin

Key clients

Saint Gobain (Jewson)

UK Certification Authority for Reinforcing Steels (UK CARES)

Britvic

The Army Museums Ogilby Trust

Kinetic Games Limited

Stannah Stairlifts

Just Develop It

Work highlights

  • Advised The Army Museums Ogilby Trust on a project to create an online archive.
  • Advised Britvic Soft Drinks Ltd on an agreement with Kantar for the provision of a cloud solution.
  • Advising start-up computer games company Kinetic Games on the launch of the award-winning and very successful game, “Phasmophobia”.

Warners Solicitors

Warners Solicitors focuses on the IP elements of the technology market, and works with clients on issues such as licensing and teaming agreements. The firm is particularly active in the fintech sector, primarily through key client Mosaic Smart Data Limited, which it assists with a number of non-contentious issues. Kevin Sullivan and Russell Brinkhurst are the key practitioners.

Practice head(s):

Kevin Sullivan

Other key lawyers:

Russell Brinkhurst

Key clients

Mosaic Smart Data Limited

FSI Global Plc

Beggars Group Limited

Columba Systems Limited

Information Publishing Plc

Work highlights

  • Advised Beggars Group Limited on its equity investment in Driift Holdings Ltd, the holding company of Driift Live, the new live streaming music platform.
  • Advised Mosaic Smart Data Limited on its teaming agreements with CLS and MUFG to launch FXLIQUIDITY, a weekly analysis tool for traders to navigate market volatility.