Firms To Watch: Fintech

Allen & Overy LLP has made a strong recent push into the US markets with the arrival of several high-profile fintech partners at its New York office, including Adam Chernichaw and Dario de Martino from White & Case LLP and Morrison Foerster respectively.
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton has a multi-disciplinary team that is especially busy on the investigations front, regularly representing fintech and crypto clients before the SEC. Derek Bush and Matthew Solomon in Washington DC and New York respectively have good credentials.
WilmerHale brings a strong combination of regulatory and transactional expertise to its fintech practice, as well as an excellent track record for advising emerging companies. New York corporate partner Robert Finkel and Washington DC-based regulatory partner Franca Harris Gutierrez are key names.

Fintech in United States

Latham & Watkins LLP

Latham & Watkins LLP is praised for its ‘incredibly deep bench of financial regulatory expertise that positions it at the top of the market for fintech legal counsel‘. The firm represents clients from across the industry, including major financial institutions, established technology companies and startups, investment funds, and industry trade organizations. The diverse clientbase is matched by its wide-ranging advice, including capital markets, broker-dealer arrangements, financial regulatory, data protection, M&A and technology joint ventures. The firm also has a significant presence in the cryptocurrency space, as demonstrated by its role on the Coinbase IPO, and advice to clients including Celsius Networks and Cipher Mining Technologies. The firm’s global reach is also noted, ‘with London and Hong Kong being highlights of their international fintech practice‘. Key partners include global co-chair Todd Beauchamp, and, also in Washington, DC, Mitchell Rabinowitz and Jenny Cieplak. New York partners Yvette Valdez and Stephen Wink, and Silicon Valley-based global technology chair Benjamin Potter are ‘stand outs‘ who are ‘willing to work to yes, rather than stopping at no‘.

Practice head(s):

Todd Beauchamp

Other key lawyers:

Yvette Valdez; Mitchell Rabinowitz; Jenny Cieplak; Stephen Wink

Testimonials

‘Latham has an incredibly deep bench of financial regulatory expertise that positions it at the top of the market for fintech legal counsel. Whether it be broker-dealer, investment company, investment advisor or other SEC related issues, payments, money-transmission, or commodities, they have you covered. The excellence in the U.S. is matched abroad, with London and Hong Kong being highlights of their international fintech practice. The firm has also been innovative in the blockchain and cryptocurrency sector, working on novel financing and token structures.’

‘The partners I’ve worked with are good people and they care about the problems I’ve sought their help solving. Ben Potter, Steve Wink, and Yvette Valdez are all stand-outs. In areas where there is uncertainty, they’re willing to work to yes, rather than stopping at no.’

 

Key clients

Ava Labs

Bank of America

Citi

Burnt Finance

Celsius Networks

Cipher Mining Technologies

Coinbase

EngageSmart

ErisX

FIA Tech Consortium

Gemini

Hippo Enterprises

Idle Finance

Lemonade

MoonPay

NetSpend Corporation – Global Payments

Pantera Capital

ParaFi Capital

Uniswap

Wyre Inc.

Work highlights

  • Advised Citibank, Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan as financial advisers to Coinbase in its landmark direct listing.
  • Represented a consortium of banks, consisting of ABN AMRO Clearing, Bank of America, Barclays, Citi, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, Morgan Stanley, UBS, and Wells Fargo in the creation of a Newco and its subsequent acquisition of FIA Tech from The Futures Industry Association, the leading global trade organization for the futures, options and centrally cleared derivatives markets.
  • Advising the international cryptocurrency lender Celsius on the global regulatory compliance required for its crypto lending and decentralized finance (DeFi) business, including in relation to the Commodity Exchange Act, state money services business licenses, BitLicense, and securities laws.

Mayer Brown

Mayer Brown has a market-leading fintech practice that covers all the bases. The firm’s enviable client list, particularly among major payment processors and credit card companies, including Square, PayPal and American Express, is demonstrative of the firm’s standing. This extends beyond US borders, with clients, including major investors such as Goldman Sachs, receiving strong support in Europe and Asia. Assistance with product launches and partnership agreements feature prominently on the team’s agenda, with clients benefiting from a comprehensive range of expertise, from financial services regulatory and enforcement, through to outsourcing and technology transactions, payments, lending, capital markets, M&A, venture capital and cybersecurity. The fintech leadership team also reflects the group’s multidisciplinary strengths, with regulatory partners David Beam and Steve Kaplan in Washington DC jointly heading the practice with Chicago-based outsourcing partner Brad Peterson. Other key individuals include New York finance partner Amanda Baker and Palo Alto-based Rohith George, who is especially experienced in business service agreements and related licensing matters.

Practice head(s):

David Beam; Steven Kaplan; Brad Peterson

Other key lawyers:

Amanda Baker; Julie Gillespie; Reg Goeke; Elizabeth Raymond; Rohith George

Testimonials

‘The banking and finance teams at Mayer Brown understand our business and products well, provide practical and timely regulatory and commercial advice across a range of products and areas and their specialized knowledge on corporate financing and investment arrangements and negotiations have been invaluable.’

‘David Beam is a critical partner for my legal team and business clients – he understands our business and products well and provides practical and timely advice whenever needed. Zach Carrier provided critical and excellent expertise in relation to trade receivable financing and investment arrangements in 2021.’

 

Key clients

Square

American Express Company

Goldman, Sachs & Co.

PayPal

Afterpay

LendingClub

Bitnomial Exchange

Riskified

Stripe

Work highlights

  • Advising Square on all aspects of its Borrow program, including helping the client establish a partnership with the bank lender for the borrower program, as well as related payments and credit regulatory issues.
  • Representing several fintech companies, including Square, Shopify, and Stripe in connection with establishing and negotiating bank partnership arrangements for lending platforms.
  • Consumer financial regulatory counsel to providers in connection with various buy-now/pay-later product structures, including instalment loans with various repayment structures; retail instalment/credit sale transaction structures; and closed-end credit accessible via credit cards.

Paul Hastings LLP

Paul Hastings LLP is ‘truly an extension of an in-house team‘ and ‘as good as it gets at understanding exactly what in-house counsel is dealing with‘. The strong service is complemented by its ‘hyper technically competent‘ lawyers with ‘very strong expertise in payments‘. The firm’s comprehensive offering covers all regulatory, compliance, transactional and litigation issues facing the fintech market. This extends to cutting-edge crypto launches, where it has been assisting Coinbase and Circle on their joint venture to launch a fiat stablecoin pegged to the US dollar. Atlanta-based partner Chris Daniel chairs the global fintech and payments group and advises on a broad mix of transactional and regulatory matters. Washington DC’s Behnam Dayanim chairs the privacy and cybersecurity side, while Thomas Brown in San Francisco is highly experienced on the litigation front. The recruitment of corporate partner Eric Sibbitt (San Francisco) as new fintech and payments co-chair from O’Melveny & Myers adds significant weight to an already strong team. New York corporate partner Christopher Austin is another leading figure in the market. Clients also single out the ‘truly exceptional‘ San Francisco-based associate Molly Swartz.

Practice head(s):

Chris Daniel

Other key lawyers:

Thomas Brown; Eric Sibbitt; Behnam Dayanim; Rich Davis; Christopher Austin; Molly Swartz

Testimonials

‘The team has very strong expertise in payments and are effective counsel in this area. This is the primary area of law that we engage the team to assist with.’

‘Molly Swartz is a great communicator, an extremely effective counselor and a friendly and warm person. She has great knowledge of the payments/fintech industry and legal matters relating thereto, and I thoroughly enjoy working with her and discussing legal matters with her.’

‘They know the industry cold, and not just from a legal perspective. In addition, while being hyper technically competent, they don’t take the approach of many other firms as it relates to risk. They present alternatives, explain impacts, and clearly articulate what it means for your business. They are as good as it gets at understanding exactly what in-house counsel is dealing with. Truly an extension of an in-house team.’

‘They know the industry and they take the time to understand (and remember) our business. Sounds simple, but most outside counsel/firms don’t or can’t do it. Molly Swartz is truly exceptional. Always there when we need her.’

 

Key clients

MoneyGram

Paysafe Group

Facebook

Airbnb

Warburg Pincus

Ebury

Gemini

Coinbase

Wells Fargo

GTCR

Silicon Valley Bank

Goldman Sachs

Stone Point Capital

Lightyear Capital

Circle

Uber

Paya

NewSpring

Skrill USA

Community Federal Savings Bank

Cross River Bank

Uphold, Inc.

Forte

OST.com

Volkswagen Credit, Inc.

Fiverr International Ltd.

Finxera

Maker DAO

Liquid Financial

Invoice Cloud

Join Honey

Ixaris

L’Oreal USA Inc.

Hatch Bank

Dash Core Group

Booking.com

Priceline.com

Agoda.com

Launchgood

Binance Global/Binance US

Liquid Financial

Anchorage Trust Co

InvoiceCloud

CENTRE

Long Game Savings

Fiserv

BitPay

Chime

Acorns

Affirm

Albert

Payoneer

Aspiration

Capital One

BlueVine

Brigit

Digit

Flex

Melio

One, Inc.

PayPal

Plastiq

TaskRabbit

TripAdvisor

Upwork

Square

Juniper Square

DriveWealth

Ripple

FutureFuel

FalconX

Orum

Flywire

OLB

RealPage

Yardi

ANComm

Work highlights

  • Representing Coinbase, Circle and their consortium Centre on regulatory issues concerning their plans to join forces to mint the fiat stablecoin USDC (USD Coin), a digital stablecoin that is pegged to the US dollar and runs on the Ethereum, Stellar, Algorand and Solana blockchains.
  • Advising Paysafe Group and Skrill USA in connection with US financial services regulatory aspects of Paysafe’s successful $9bn SPAC offering and the subsequent state money transmission change of control process for Skrill USA.
  • Advising the consumer finance application Acorns Grow on its $2.2bn SPAC merger transaction with Pioneer Merger Corp, including related issues such as the PIPE placement and the S-4 registration statement.

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP‘s combination of transactional and regulatory expertise has made it a compelling choice for some of the country’s largest banking and fintech operators. Corporate partner Scott Bennett has an extremely strong track record representing issuers and underwriters in related public and private securities offerings. The firm’s representation of the online trading platform Robinhood Markets in 2021 is demonstrative of its cross-practice approach to supporting clients. This included the company’s $1.9bn Nasdaq IPO, a $3.4bn private placement of convertible notes and warrants, and the successful dismissal of several lawsuits, led by litigation partner Kevin Orsini, concerning Robinhood’s decision to temporarily restrict trading during the volatile GamesStop short squeeze. The regulatory side of the practice was also boosted following the recruitment of financial services partner David Portilla from Debevoise & Plimpton LLP. Practice head and IP partner David Kappos is a key asset, working closely with corporate and regulatory partners on related blockchain and fintech issues.

Practice head(s):

David Kappos

Other key lawyers:

Scott Bennett; David Portilla

Key clients

Afterpay

American Express

Deutsche Börse

Dfinity

GreenSky

IBM

Robinhood

SIFMA

Work highlights

  • Represented Robinhood in its $1.9bn IPO and in litigation involving antitrust, breach of contract, securities and various other state and federal claims arising out of Robinhood’s decision to temporarily restrict trading in certain securities in the face of unprecedented market volatility.
  • Representing Afterpay in its pending $29bn acquisition by Square.
  • Representing Dfinity, an international organization developing blockchain technology, in a series of securities litigations concerning the issuance of utility tokens.

DLA Piper LLP (US)

DLA Piper LLP (US) is noted for its ‘unmatched experience and reputation for advising on novel projects’ through ‘thoughtful analysis’ and ‘creative alternatives and solutions’. The firm represents an impressive selection of financial institutions, investment funds and technology companies. In addition to its regulatory expertise, which covers traditional and disruptive products, including blockchain and non-fungible tokens (NFT), the team is also active on the corporate side, having been involved in several high-profile IPOs, SPAC mergers and M&A deals. The firm’s capacity to handle novel mandates was demonstrated by its advice to TikTok on its first NFT launch. US co-chair Margo Tank in Washington DC, Chicago’s David Whitaker and Seattle’s Trenton Dykes are highly experienced in this area. San Francisco disputes partner Michael Fluhr provides ‘great customer service’ and is ‘always responsive and proactively identifying new areas that he could help in’. Mark Radcliffe in Silicon Valley is considered ‘highly experienced‘ in the crypto space. Former global co-chair David Luce joined Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP in January 2022.

Practice head(s):

Margo Tank

Other key lawyers:

David Whitaker; Trenton Dykes; Michael Fluhr; Mark Radcliffe

Testimonials

‘The team we have worked with has been very collaborative in developing novel processes for concepts we are working on within the crypto space. While there has been some learning curve, they have adapted their traditional securities work to cryptocurrencies.’

‘They are generally responsive, work long hours as needed, and prioritize the work that is time critical for us to ensure we get what we need, when we need it.’

‘The partners in this group are deeply knowledgeable about both the big picture and the practical details of the legal landscape. They also provide great insights about the impact of the law on businesses. They are responsive and prioritize client needs, and have been wonderfully collaborative across their entire group, leveraging different experts for different issues to ensure we get the best advice as smoothly as possible. I’ve particularly appreciated their strong global reach, and how smoothly they collaborate across jurisdictions. They’ve also done a great job leveraging pre-existing resources to provide us advice as efficiently as possible.’

‘Margo Tank is a visionary and an essential thought-partner. Her knowledge of the law and her ability to provide real-time counsel on both long-term strategy as well as nuts and bolts practical tactics is superb. David Whitaker is a great partner – always bringing key insights and perspectives, as well as valuable practical solutions.’

‘Unmatched experience and reputation for advising on novel projects and the application of e-commerce laws. Thoughtful analysis, creative alternatives/solutions, and shared goals.’

‘They have deep expertise in blockchain and crypto. Mark Radcliffe is highly experienced in the space with great knowledge of projects and the various legal approaches. Their value is in understanding the objectives, knowing the huge areas of grey, various approaches and recommending a good solution.’

‘The DLA team, and Michael Fluhr in particular, provide great customer service. Michael is always responsive and proactively identifying new areas that he could help in. He is responsive to requests relating to billing and diversity.’

Key clients

TikTok

Flexa Holdings LLC

Q2 Holdings

LLR Partners

Franklin Advisers

Snapsheet

Opportunity Financial, LLC (OppLoans)

DocuSign

Scivantage

Work highlights

  • Represented TikTok in the launch of the video platform’s first ever non-fungible token (NFT) collection, TikTok Top Moments, as well as various other content and licensing agreements.
  • Represented Katapult Holdings, Inc., an e-commerce focused financial technology company, in its merger with the special purpose acquisition company FinServ Acquisition Corp.
  • Represented Ekata, Inc., a global leader in dynamic identity verification solutions, in its takeover by Mastercard for $850m.

Fenwick & West LLP

The technology sector is a core focus for Fenwick & West LLP, and fintech forms a key part of this offering. The firm primarily represents start-ups and established fintech companies, including payment processing companies such as Stripe and Square, and payment platforms, including Bill.com. The practice also represents some of the most prominent players in the blockchain and cryptocurrency space, with advice to Coinbase on its Nasdaq IPO a highlight from 2021. Strategic M&A, capital markets listings, and funding rounds are mainstays of the practice, and a key partner on the transactional side is Andrew Albertson in Seattle who co-chairs the firm’s payment systems and blockchain teams. Santa Monica-based Andrew Klungness co-chairs the consumer technologies team, and regularly advises on strategic alliances, joint ventures and collaboration and partnering agreements. San Francisco-based regulatory partner Michael Dicke is one of the main contacts for regulatory and contentious matters, including enforcement proceedings, investigations and securities litigation.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Albertson; Michael Dicke; Andrew Klungness

Other key lawyers:

Ryan Straus; Stephen Gillespie

Key clients

Coinbase Global

Bolt Financial

Alchemy

Bill.com

Carta, Inc.

Nava

TRON Foundation

Pipe Technologies

FTX Trading

Remitly

Tala

Steemit

Work highlights

  • Represented Coinbase Global in its direct listing on the Nasdaq Global Select Market, the first major crypto company to go public and the first technology company to go public through a direct listing on Nasdaq.
  • Represented FTX Trading in its $900m Series B financing, the largest crypto investment round to date.
  • Represented Bill.com in multiple acquisitions, including its $2.5bn acquisition of Divvy in a stock and cash transaction and its $625m acquisition of Invoice2go.

Goodwin

Goodwin has one of the leading technology practices in the market, and this expertise extends to the fintech market where it represents a wide range of start-ups and established providers. These include leading companies in the payments, wealth management, alternative lending, insurtech, and digital currencies and blockchain space. In addition to corporate finance and high-end transactional matters, the firm provides strong support on partnership agreements with banks and financial services companies, as well as contentious and non-contentious regulatory, privacy and cybersecurity advice. Fintech co-chairs Mitzi Chang and Scott Joachim, who respectively lead the team out of San Francisco and Silicon Valley, are both highly active on the corporate transactional side, representing investment funds and public and emerging companies. Key partners in the financial services regulatory practice, which is praised for its ‘amazing bench and great practitioners with years of experience in government service and advising clients‘ include Mike Whalen in Washington DC and the ‘fantastic expertKimberly Monty Holzel in Boston.

Practice head(s):

Mitzi Chang; Scott Joachim; Mike Whalen

Other key lawyers:

Kimberly Monty Holzel

Testimonials

‘Goodwin has an amazing bench and great practitioners with years of experience in government service and advising clients. They’re constantly working with cutting edge clients on novel products and legal issues, which makes them the first place I call when we’re doing something new. The team is also very solutions oriented and great about charting a way to a compliant product launch. I can’t speak highly enough about the firm’s FinTech and financial services practice groups.’

‘Kim Monty Holzel is a fantastic expert who has incredible knowledge on a wide range of topics. Kim is able to quickly understand our business objectives, help us apply the law, and also navigate any grey areas. Kim was instrumental in the recent launch of our latest FinTech card product, and helped us develop several innovative solutions to maintain a rich customer experience while also complying with notice, disclosure and billing requirements.’

‘Strong consumer regulatory team.’

Key clients

Stripe

Majority USA

Step Mobile

Seed Financial

Clear Financial Technology

DailyPay

Kovo

Affirm

CoinFlip

Till Financial

Social Finance

Deserve

Toast

Bangor Savings Bank

Splitit Payments

Bond Financial Technologies

Kabbage (K. Servicing)

Bank of America

Even Financial

Hogan Lovells US LLP

Hogan Lovells US LLP has a far-reaching global fintech group, which is co-chaired out of Washington DC by the highly experienced regulatory partner Richard Schaberg. The team works closely with colleagues in other key global financial hubs, including London. The practice offers a broad spread of transactional, regulatory, litigation, IP and advisory support. The clientbase is equally diverse, ranging from major financial institutions through to start-ups, emerging and public technology companies. On the transactional side, the firm has a strong track record for major M&As and partnering agreements, and regularly assists clients on product launches and associated regulatory approvals and inquiries. Regulatory and compliance advice also extends to key areas such as cybersecurity and anti-money laundering initiatives. Other key individuals include senior counsel Gregory Lisa, who handles regulatory issues, and corporate partner Nathaniel Gallon in Silicon Valley.

Practice head(s):

Richard Schaberg

Other key lawyers:

Gregory Lisa; Nathaniel Gallon

Key clients

Golden Pacific Bank

Grasshopper Bank

Citizens Financial Services Inc.

Muun wallet

Maker

Golden Pacific Bank

NBT

Evergreen

CNB

Work highlights

  • Advised Golden Pacific Bancorp and Golden Pacific Bank in connection with regulatory matters and their $22.3m acquisition by Social Finance, a digital personal finance company.
  • Advising Citizens Financial Services and its subsidiary, First Citizens Community Bank, in entering into a lending arrangement with online student lender College Ave.
  • Advising Grasshopper Bank on various regulatory matters and commercial agreements with service providers, fintech entity customers and other partners.

Morrison Foerster

Morrison Foerster combines an impressive pedigree for technology-focused advice with strong financial services regulatory and enforcement expertise. Clients include banks, payments providers, established technology companies and start-up and emerging disruptors. On the technology side, the team regularly assists with digitization projects and the development of new products and platforms, and is also a market leader in data privacy issues. Blockchain and cryptocurrencies are also climbing up the agenda, with recent advice to banks on related custody issues and the development of stablecoin platforms. The practice is jointly led by Washington DC-based regulatory partners Crystal Kaldjob and Jeremy Mandell. DC-based partner Maria Earley (who recently joined from Reed Smith LLP with the ‘exceptionally knowledgeable‘ New York regulatory partner Jeffrey Silberman) is a former Consumer Financial Protection Bureau enforcement attorney who adds weight on enforcement issues. Stephanie Sharron in Palo Alto is active on the technology transactional side. New York of counsel Evan Minsberg, who joined from Venable LLP, is a ‘go-to attorney for all new product introductions and iterations‘.

Practice head(s):

Crystal Kaldjob; Jeremy Mandell

Other key lawyers:

Maria Earley; Jeffrey Silberman; Stephanie Sharron; Evan Minsberg

Testimonials

‘FinTech business model expansion and bespoke new product introductions.’

‘Evan Minsberg is my go-to attorney for all new product introductions and iterations. He is a part of our business team and our legal team.’

‘Morrison & Foerster has vast experience representing startups in the financial sector and emerging technology.’

‘Jeff Silberman is an exceptionally knowledgeable lawyer who gives practical, straightforward advice. He is very business-oriented and attuned to our business needs as well as our legal needs.’

Key clients

Divvy

Ocrolus

Elevate Credit

Work highlights

  • Advised Divvy in connection with its US$2.5bn sale to Bill.com.
  • Advised Ocrolus in connection with partnership and integration agreements with Plaid and Blend and its $80m Series C Financing.
  • Advised Elevate Credit in an investigation filed by the DC Attorney General concerning ‘true lender’ issues.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP‘s longstanding track record for market-leading advice to technology companies and investors also extends to the fintech sector. The firm stands out for its experience in representing fintech companies, from emerging start-ups through to established players such as PayPal and LendingClub. The team has been especially busy assisting payment processors and challenger banks on high-end corporate matters and product launches, as demonstrated by its advice to mobile banking app Dave on its $4bn SPAC merger. Clients benefit from a comprehensive service that includes regulatory, venture capital, litigation, IP, cybersecurity and data privacy. The firm’s adaptability is noted by clients who appreciate that the ‘team is always taking time to learn the distinctive nature of the products and companies that they represent‘. Key partners include Washington DC practice chair and regulatory partner Barrie VanBrackle, capital markets partner Robert Moyle in New York, and corporate partners John Bautista and Josh Pollick in Santa Monica.

Practice head(s):

Barrie VanBrackle

Other key lawyers:

John Bautista; Robert Moyle; Josh Pollick

Testimonials

‘The Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe Fintech practice team brings together a strong traditional corporate law practice with innovative thinking about a new class of corporations. The team is always taking time to learn the distinctive nature of the products and companies that they represent.’

 

Key clients

Dave

Green Dot Corporation

PayPal

Deel

LendingClub

Coatue Management

Divvy (Bill.com)

Revolut

Chime Financial

Robinhood Marketplace

Evolve Bank

Currencycloud

Betterment

Beacon Platform

OpenSea

Work highlights

  • Advised Dave on its $4bn SPAC merger.
  • Defending PayPal in patent litigation against IOENGINE and advising PayPal on the deployment of its $530m Economic Opportunity Fund.
  • Advised Coatue Management on $2.35bn of investments into various fintech companies.

Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP

Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP combines a strong mix of financial services and technology expertise. The team is ‘well integrated across disciplines’, fielding several experienced corporate, regulatory, transactional and litigation lawyers. The regulatory side of the practice includes senior counsel Christopher Giancarlo, a former chairman of the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission who co-chairs the firm’s Digital Works practice and is ‘well known for his vast understanding and knowledge of the crypto space‘. Fellow digital works co-chair Conrad Bahlke is also noted for his good regulatory experience in crypto and blockchain. Washington DC-based regulatory partner Justin Browder is also ‘a brilliant lawyer with an acute business semse and an amazing service level‘. Clients, which include fintech providers, financial services companies and investment funds, also benefit from the firm’s transactional capabilities. Private equity co-chair Jeffrey Poss has a good track record representing investors while Matthew Berger in Palo Alto assists on related technology transactions and IP matters. The recruitment of David Luce, DLA Piper LLP (US)‘s former global co-chair, adds weight to an already strong group. Lawyers are based in New York unless otherwise stated.

Practice head(s):

Jeffrey Poss; Christopher Giancarlo; Conrad Bahlke

Other key lawyers:

David Luce; Matthew Berger; Justin Browder

Testimonials

‘Well-integrated across disciplines.’

‘Jim Burns, Artyom Rogov, Justin Browder. All highly competent and work well together from different vantage points’

‘Chris Giancarlo and Justin Browder provide 360-degrees business savvy services, taking into account regulatory development and the other market participants. They manage to deliver a high-quality service with a great service level and at record timelines.’

‘Chris is well known for his vast understanding and knowledge of the crypto space including an in-depth understanding of the up to date regulatory trends and initiates which is critical in a highly evolving regulatory regime such as cryptos. Justin is a brilliant lawyer with an acute business sense and an amazing service level. We enjoy working with them immensely.

‘They are always strict on a timeline and very punctual. Matt Berger: Excellent knowledge of a technology deal. Tiffany Lee: Excellent knowledge of a technology deal. Josh Real: Great associate to support. Christopher Giancarlo: Excellent knowledge of fintech and blockchain. Conrad Bahlke: Excellent knowledge of fintech and blockchain.’

Key clients

Acumatica

Aquiline Capital Partners

Ascensus

Brinker Capital

eToro USA

Fenergo

FIS

Forecast Foundation

Franklin Resources, Inc.

Genstar Capital

GSR

HealthEquity

Insight Partners

Institutional Shareholder Services Inc. (ISS)

Kony Inc.

Loyale Healthcare

Lykke Exchange

The Options Clearing Corporation (OCC)

Personal Capital

Professional Datasolutions, Inc. (PDI)

Ripple Labs Inc.

SIFMA

SIX

Capital One, N.A. – United Income

Virtual Currency Association

Warburg Pincus

WealthFront Corporation

Ballard Spahr LLP

Ballard Spahr LLP has established an extremely good reputation for banking, payments and financial services regulatory advice. The multi-disciplinary practice is especially good at defending clients against regulatory enforcement actions and investigations. On the transactional side it assists major banks in developing in-house products and relationships with technology companies. New York’s James Kim and Minneapolis-based partner Ronald Vaske jointly lead the fintech and payments team, which includes Washington DC-based privacy and data security partner Kim Phan. Philadelphia’s Peter Jaslow co-leads the blockchain technology and cryptocurrency group, while recently promoted New York partner Judy Mok is active in the payments arena. In Philadelphia, consumer financial services co-head Mark Furlettiknows everything that could be known about financial regulations’.

Practice head(s):

James Kim; Ronald Vaske

Other key lawyers:

Kim Phan; Peter Jaslow; Stefanie Jackman; Judy Mok; Mark Furletti

Testimonials

‘Mark Furletti knows everything that could be known about financial regulations, provides quick, direct responses with ample legal support, and is just altogether friendly and enjoyable to work with. There is also never any pressure to provide additional business.’

Key clients

CommonBond

Continental Finance Company

Lending Club

EasyKnock

Nth Round

PayPal

Social Finance (SoFi).

Steady (steadyapp.com)

TAB Bank

Metropolitan Commercial Bank

Fifth Third Bank

WebBank

Buckley LLP

Buckley LLP offers good expertise across all corners of the fintech market, covering the full suite of transactional, licensing, regulatory, enforcement and litigation matters. Clients include major banks, investment funds, fintech companies, and other consumer finance providers, including online lending platforms. Recent mandates have included regulatory advice to a financial services company establishing a mortgage loan origination platform, and assisting a digital currency alternative asset manager in obtaining de novo money transmitter licenses. The team primarily works out of Washington DC and is jointly led by partners Christopher Witeck, who regularly advises on related M&A and commercial contracts, and John Kromer, who has a strong focus on consumer finance. Litigation partner Michelle Rogers has good experience of government enforcement actions and regulatory examinations. Los Angeles-based Clinton Rockwell is active on the consumer financial services side.

Practice head(s):

John Kromer; Christopher Witeck

Other key lawyers:

Michelle Rogers; Clinton Rockwell

Key clients

A mortgage origination company

Fintech company

A subsidiary functioning as a digital currency alternative asset manager

Work highlights

  • Providing regulatory advice for compliance with state, federal, and agency requirements in connection with a client’s mortgage loan origination platform.
  • Represented a latter-round fintech focused on consumer lending in enhancing all aspects of its regulatory compliance and bank partnership agreements in advance of, and in connection with, its IPO.
  • Assisting a digital currency alternative asset manager company in obtaining de novo money transmitter licenses in all relevant US jurisdictions.

Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance has an experienced multi-disciplinary practice that combines the firm’s global financial services capabilities with an experienced technology group. Clients range from major global financial institutions and industry bodies through to start-up fintech companies, who benefit from the team’s transactional, regulatory and contentious support. In addition to traditional banking, insurance and payments products, the team has grown its focus on blockchain and cryptocurrency-related mandates. Assisting VanEck Associates Corporation on the development and launch of two exchange-traded cryptocurrency trusts demonstrates the firm’s melding of the traditional and the new. The fintech team is led by the Washington DC-based regulatory partner Steven Gatti who assists with enforcement and non-contentious matters. Other key lawyers include regulatory partner Megan Gordon (Washington DC) and New York’s David Felsenthal, a structured finance partner with a good track record for structuring blockchain and token sales.

Practice head(s):

Steven Gatti

Other key lawyers:

Megan Gordon; David Felsenthal

Key clients

Van Eck

Securitize

R3

HQLAx

WEX

Fidelity National Information Services (FIS)

Slice Technologies

Cauris

Chamber of Digital Commerce

ISDA

Work highlights

  • Advised VanEck Associates Corporation on the structuring and organization of two exchange-traded cryptocurrency trusts.
  • Advised Securitize on its strategic acquisition of Distributed Technology Markets.
  • Advised HQLAx and Deutsche Börse on their jointly developed distributed ledger technology (DLT) solution for frictionless collateral swaps in the securities lending market.

Dentons

Dentons has an impressive multidisciplinary practice that provides a combination of corporate finance, IP and regulatory support. Clients include major banks and financial services institutions as well as fintech start-ups and growth companies. New York-based partner Victor Boyajian heads the firm’s global venture technology and emerging growth companies practice, which represents several leading companies in this space on a wide range of issues including venture funding, corporate acquisitions and compliance. This expertise crosses into areas such as blockchain, where New York partner Charles Gelinas is establishing a good track record for distributed ledger and cryptocurrency transactions, including advising digital token issuers in token-generating events. Washington DC-based partner John Holahan and New York’s Matthew Yoon, who co-head the firm’s capital markets regulatory team, are also extremely active on the fintech side.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Yoon; John Holahan; Victor Boyajian

Other key lawyers:

Charles Gelinas

Key clients

Affirm

Blokk Holdings

CommonBond

Citibank

GOAL Structured Solutions

OfferPad

Peer Street

Remitly

Figure Technologies

REZI.co

SitusAMC

PayLease/Zego

Digital Risk

Spring Labs

Edly LLC

Work highlights

  • Advised Figure Funding LLC as issuer in Figure Line of Credit Trust 2020-1, the first ever securitization backed by loans originated, serviced, financed and sold on blockchain.
  • Represented Citi Ventures as co-lead in a $25m funding round for Even Financial, the startup that uses an API to help banks find and connect with consumers via channel partners.
  • Represent CommonBond, a national online student loan originator, on a variety of matters, including in a recent Series B venture funding and on regulatory and compliance matters related to the marketing, origination, making, servicing, collection and secondary market sale of private student loans.

Eversheds Sutherland

Eversheds Sutherland provides a comprehensive fintech service and is praised for its team of ‘down to earth, relatable people that you look forward to visiting with‘. Clients come from across all corners of the industry, including banks, payments and credit card processing companies, and digital commerce. The team’s ‘cost effective, thorough analysis‘ covers a range of issues, including regulatory, corporate, IP, litigation, cybersecurity and tax. The group is especially active on the payments and digital commerce side, regularly advising on product launches, M&A and collaboration agreements. A large portion of the team works from Atlanta, including well regarded practice head Robert Pile and fellow corporate partners Brian Murphy and David Phillips, and the ‘brilliant and great‘ finance partner Brennan Posner.  New York-based global insurance head John Pruitt is good on insurtech matters, while Washington DC’s Michael Bahar co-heads the global cybersecurity and data privacy team.

Practice head(s):

Robert Pile

Other key lawyers:

Brian Barrett; John Pruitt; Brian Murphy; Hannah Winiarski; Michael Bahar; David Phillips

Testimonials

‘The folks at Eversheds provided cost effective thorough analysis. In addition, they are down to earth, relatable people that you look forward to visiting with.’

‘Brennan Posner is brilliant and great person. Laura Jacobs is bright, energetic and intelligent as well. They are a great team and valuable partners of ours.’

 

Key clients

Fiserv (including First Data Corporation)

Toyota Financial Services

FLEETCOR Technologies

Noro-Moseley Partners and SSM Partners Growth Equity II

Deutsche Börse

Cox Communications

Work highlights

  • Represented Fiserv on several matters, including the acquisition of Spend Labs, a business that offers a cloud-based service for commercial and small business cards, and the acquisition of the electronic bill matching and presentment business, Inlet, LLC.
  • Represented Toyota Financial Services in connection with the development and launch of a proprietary financial technology platform.
  • Represented FLEETCOR Technologies in the acquisition of Associated Foreign Exchange (AFEX), a non-bank cross-border payment solutions provider, and in its acquisition of Roger.ai, a global accounts payable cloud software platform for small businesses.

Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP

Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP‘s versatile fintech team advises on the full range of industry-relevant issues, including regulatory, finance, data protection, corporate and technology. Clients come from across the market, though the firm is especially known for representing banks, financial services and wealth management companies. Recent mandates have included advice on the launch of new products and platforms, and partnering agreements with fintech companies. The multi-faceted team is spread throughout the firm’s US office network, including Austin’s Erin Fonté, co-chair of the financial institutions corporate and regulatory practice, and New York’s Lisa Sotto, global head of privacy and cybersecurity. Other key partners include Dallas-based Jarrett Hale, co-chair of financial services litigation and compliance, and Washington DC’s Scott Kimpel, a lead contact for blockchain and distributed ledger technology.

Practice head(s):

Erin Fonté

Other key lawyers:

Lisa Sotto; Peter Weinstock; Jarrett Hale; Scott Kimpel; Eric Flynn; Brittany Bacon

Testimonials

‘Hunton’s size and expertise in a number of areas – compliance, litigation, bankruptcy, and regulatory matters – allows me to work with them on a variety of issues. In addition to being subject mater experts, they are innovative and responsive.’

‘I work with a number of the Hunton attorneys; Jarrett Hale, Eric Flynn, Greg Hesse, Tara Elgie, Abbie Lyle and Nikki Skolnekovich. I find their expertise to be best in class for a number of legal subject matters and all of them are super responsive. Have always treated me like I’m their most important client.’

‘The practice has a broad range of expertise available making it efficient to source our legal requirements from one firm. I have also found the firm to be flexible in structuring an ongoing working relationship.’

‘All of the attorneys I have met are extremely competent and good to work with. They display a combination of good legal technical knowledge with a pragmatic approach. I particularly enjoy working with Deborah Herzog and Carl Goss on a regular basis.’

Key clients

Addepar

Capital Plus Financial

CoBank, ACB

Cross River Bank & CRB Group

Finxact, Inc.

First West Texas Bancshares

FNZ (UK) Ltd. and FNZ Trust Company

Lead Bank

Lend Street Financial, Inc.

Lyons, Adam

MVB Bank

Quontic Bank

Rakuten

Robinhood Markets

Sutton Bank

U.S. Chamber Of Commerce

Vaster Capital

Velocity Commercial Capital

Verisk Analytics

Yardi Systems

ZeroDown

Work highlights

  • Represnting Quontic Bank, a fintech platform bank and CDFI Fund recipient in New York, on regulatory, corporate and strategic matters, including  the design and implementation of a new checking account rewards product and the bank’s new Bitcoin rewards account product.
  • Advising Cross River Bank on a wide range of regulatory and compliance matters, including with the FDIC, and also corporate and contractual advice, including contract negotiations with fintech platforms.
  • Represented FNZ in a joint venture transaction with State Street Bank and Trust (SSBT), in which a newly formed trust company acquired certain assets and liabilities related to SSBT’s Wealth Manager Services business unit.

K&L Gates

K&L Gates has a well regarded fintech practice that approaches the market from several different angles. On the transactional side, key areas of expertise include partnering agreements between banking and fintech clients, where the team regularly assists both sides of the table, as well as advice on M&A and corporate financings. The group also has a strong cadre of financial service regulatory lawyers with good experience of related contentious and non-contentious issues. Another increasingly important plank in the firm’s offering is its experience in digital assets, blockchain and cryptocurrencies. Lead partners include New York’s Judith Rinearson who has an impressive industry background in payments systems and financial services. Robert Zinn, who divides his time between Pittsburgh and New York, is a key contact for related M&A, while Washington DC partner Jennifer Crowder is highly experienced on the regulatory side.

Practice head(s):

Judith Rinearson; Robert Zinn

Other key lawyers:

Jennifer Crowder

Key clients

Foris DAX d/b/a Crypto.com

Goldman Sachs & Co

Ingo Money

Metallicus/First Blockchain Bank/ MetalPay

PaysafeCard

Serent Capital

Syncapay/DaVinci Payments

UBS Americas, Inc. JPMorgan (via subsidiary JPMC Strategic Investments I Corporation)

Barclays PLC (via subsidiary Barclays Investments Unquoted Limited)

Wells Fargo & Company

Work highlights

  • Advised a subsidiary of Goldman, Sachs & Co and two of its affiliates in connection with the Series C Preferred Stock financing of Amount, Inc., an online banking platform for digital financial services.
  • Helped MetalPay launch cryptocurrency exchanges in the EU and US, and provided regulatory guidance in establishing P2P payments platform; also advised the client on its application for a federal banking charter.
  • Advised a subsidiary of Wells Fargo & Company in connection with the Series A Preferred Stock financing of Trovata, an automated cash reporting and forecasting platform utilizing multi-bank API data aggregation.

Perkins Coie LLP

Perkins Coie LLP‘s comprehensive practice has an impressive track record for advising fintech companies on the full suite of related matters. The bulk of the firm’s clients are established and start-up technology providers, though it also represents venture capital investors and financial institutions. The team offers good expertise on the transactional, regulatory, litigation and compliance front, and ‘provides grounded legal advice in a manner that is implementable and executable by client legal and compliance teams‘. A major string to the firm’s bow is its longstanding focus on cryptocurrency and blockchain, regularly helping established clients as the technology enters the mainstream. The fintech industry group is co-chaired by Joe Cutler and Dax Hansen in Seattle and New York’s Dana Syracuse. Clients also rate the ‘highly responsive‘ Seattle-based counsel Steve Merriman, who ‘digs deep into issues to provide practical legal advice‘. Emerging companies and venture capital co-chair Troy Foster in Silicon Valley ‘always has solid insights‘.

Practice head(s):

Dana Syracuse; Joe Cutler; Dax Hansen

Other key lawyers:

Steve Merriman; Troy Foster

Testimonials

‘The Perkins team provides grounded legal advice in a manner that is implementable and executable by client legal and compliance teams. Key capabilities include virtual assets, MSB licensing, AML/BSA, and OFAC/sanctions support.’

‘Steve Merriman – One of the most value-add attorneys I have ever worked with. Understands data, information, and systems related to regulatory risk. Digs deep into issues to provide practical legal advice. Highly responsive. Carolyn White – Has successfully dealt with a higher variety and complexity of compliance and regulatory issues than any associate I have observed.’

‘Even for a large law firm, they have a personal touch. I have worked with their corporate law, litigation, employment, IP, non-profit, tax, and other lawyers. They are always knowledgeable, professional, and to the point.’

‘I work with Troy Foster, who always has solid insights and if he doesn’t know the answer off the top of his head (which is rare), he’s quick to get in touch with someone within the firm who can help.’

 

Key clients

Robinhood

OKCoin

PosaBit

Check Technologies

IMVU

Brave Software

Compound Finance

SmartContract, Chainlink

Creditly

Simba

Work highlights

  • Strategic legal support to Microsoft in connection with the development and launch of a blockchain platform that manages supply chains for high-value server commodities and other goods.
  • Advising clients on non-fungible tokens since 2017 and presenting on the topic since 2018.
  • Providing the cryptocurrency company Anchorage with regulatory guidance, including discussions with and filing with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, to receive a federal charter – obtained in early 2021.

Reed Smith LLP

Reed Smith LLP has an active multidisciplinary practice with strong domestic and cross-border finance, regulatory and corporate expertise. This extends to advice on joint ventures, development agreements, licensing applications, IP and outsourcing matters, as well as regulatory, data privacy and cybersecurity matters. Clients include established and emerging fintech companies as well as leading banks. Blockchain and cryptocurrency matters also feature prominently in the workload, including advice on proprietary trading venues and exchanges, initial coin offerings and non-fungible tokens. Experienced corporate partner Herb Kozlov leads the team from New York, with strong support from the versatile Peter Emmi on transactional and contentious IP matters and the ‘amazingChristine Parker for cryptocurrency and digital assets. Former partner Stephen Aschettino departed for Norton Rose Fulbright, while Jeffrey Silberman and Maria Earley are now at Morrison Foerster.

Practice head(s):

Herb Kozlov

Other key lawyers:

Peter Emmi; Christine Parker

Testimonials

‘Team is great. Deep knowledge in all the aspects of crypto – CFTC, SEC, banking, multi jurisdictional.’

‘Accessible, always helpful and willing to go through the basics. Christine Trent Parker is amazing.’

 

Sullivan & Worcester LLP

Sullivan & Worcester LLP stands out for its pioneering work in the blockchain and cryptocurrency space, where New York-based group co-chair Joel Telpnerunderstands seamlessly the business, technology and use-cases of cryptocurrencies and blockchain‘. Clients include start-ups, emerging companies and major listed entities, as well as governments and public sector bodies. The service offers support on the full spread of transactional and regulatory issues, such as product and currency launches (including sovereign currencies), financings and M&A. New York corporate partner Scott Kaufman is also highly active in this space, representing several entrepreneurs, fintech providers and venture capital firms. Other key individuals include Boston’s Douglas Stransky for related tax issues, and New York’s Natalie Lederman for M&A and corporate finance.

Practice head(s):

Joel Telpner

Other key lawyers:

Scott Kaufman; Douglas Stransky; Natalie Lederman

Testimonials

‘Joel Telpner is really the number one lawyer in the world, hands down, that understands seamlessly the business, technology and use-cases of cryptocurrencies and blockchain.  Joel is the only lawyer I would recommend for the legal side hands down.’

‘The team has deep experience and knowledge in securities law and has developed an expertise around blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies.’

 ‘Joel Telpner is a smart, engaging professional who is easy to work with and delivers high quality work.’

‘Our interaction is restricted to the fintech and blockchain group at Sullivan’s New York office. Their uniqueness comes from their ability to interpret SEC/FINRA regulations with blockchain, digital securities, digital asset securities, and stablecoins.’

‘We utilize the practice because their knowledge of the blockchain/cryptocurrency and digital asset space is unparalleled. We have not found another firm with the depth and range of their expertise.’

‘Joel Telpner and Natalie Lederman are extremely knowledgeable, professional, efficient with their time and very responsive when required.’

Key clients

Inspiration is Everything

dba Music.com

Celsius Network Limited

Arbol

Cosimo X

Marco Polo Network Operations

Work highlights

  • Regulatory guidance to Music.com, which is developing a platform for issuing and trading non-fungible tokens (NFTs) that will initially be developed by musicians and bands for their fans and others in the music ecosystem.
  • Advising Celsius Network Limited, a global platform that uses blockchain technology to enable decentralized peer-to-peer lending and borrowing products leveraging cryptocurrency, on multiple matters with respect to money transmitter and banking issues, securities issuances and regulatory.
  • Advising Arbol, an operator of a blockchain-based weather hedging and insurance platform, in connection with its capital raises, corporate acquisitions, employment issues, and various commodities laws and other regulatory matters.

White & Case LLP

White & Case LLP has a diverse and multi-faceted practice group that approaches the fintech market from several different angles. The team covers the full spread of regulatory, transactional and litigation matters, including partnership agreements and product launches. This is reflected in the clientbase, which includes banks and payment companies expanding into fintech, as well as fintech companies seeking bank charters or partnerships. The corporate finance team regularly handles SPAC mergers and business combinations, and equity and debt listings. The firm also has good credentials in cryptocurrency and blockchain, assisting providers and business investors including major media companies on non-fungible token and other related projects. Key partners in Washington DC include Pratin Vallabhaneni, a regulatory partner who advised the Republic of El Salvador on its high-profile incorporation of bitcoin as legal tender, and Era Anagnosti, who is experienced in securities filings and other fintech regulatory matters. New York-based financial services regulatory head Douglas Landy is also highly experienced in fintech and blockchain.

Practice head(s):

Era Anagnosti; Pratin Vallabhaneni

Other key lawyers:

Douglas Landy

Key clients

Meta, WhatsApp, Instagram, Novi, and affiliates

Square

JP Morgan

Stripe

Figure Technology

Anchorage Digital Bank

Victory Park Capital

Numerous SPACs: FG New America Acquisition Corp, Fusion Acquisition Group

Komainu (subsidiary of Nomura)

Deutsche Bank

Customers Bank

BankProv

DistroKid

Provenance Technologies Inc.

Nubank

Arnold & Porter

Arnold & Porter has a strong transactional and regulatory practice that represents a broad mix of banks, investment funds, strategic investors and fintech companies. The firm has grown its focus on cryptocurrencies and digital assets, including the establishment of blockchain-backed financial products and platforms. Washington DC-based financial services chair David Freeman leads the team and has a good track record assisting banks on regulatory and transactional matters. Also in the capital, Christopher Allen is especially experienced advising on federal and state consumer finance laws and regulations, while Michael Mancusi is one of the main contacts for regulatory, compliance and enforcement issues. New York-based partners Robert Azarow and Lawton Camp are especially active on the corporate and finance side respectively.

Practice head(s):

David Freeman

Other key lawyers:

Michael Mancusi; Robert Azarow; Christopher Allen; Lawton Camp

Key clients

First Republic Bank

Credit Sesame

Social Finance

Heracles Holdings

New York Community Bancorp

Work highlights

  • Represented New York Community Bancorp in its strategic relationship with Figure Technologies to collaborate on a series of blockchain initiatives utilizing the Provenance Blockchain.
  • Representing Heracles Holdings, a fintech company comprised of finance and technology executives, in the development, with a partner bank, of a private-label revolving credit card program backed by autos and second liens on residential property.

Dechert LLP

Dechert LLP has a wide-ranging workload in the fintech space that includes cutting-edge cryptocurrency transactions, as well as more traditional transactional, cybersecurity and regulatory matters. Silicon Valley-based partner Timothy Spangler has experience of fund management, fintech and cryptocurrency issues, all of which intersected on his lead role assisting Franklin Templeton on the launch of its groundbreaking blockchain-based mutual fund. Philadelphia-based Ralph Mazzeo is also experienced in related securitizations and digital assets. The regulatory and compliance aspects are typically handled by Susan Grafton in Washington DC and San Francisco practice head Mark D Perlow, a former senior counsel in the SEC’s Division of Enforcement. Karen Neuman (Washington DC) and Boston’s Brenda Sharton are respectively on hand for non-contentious and contentious privacy and cybersecurity issues.

Practice head(s):

Mark Perlow

Other key lawyers:

Timothy Spangler; Susan Grafton; Karen Neuman; Brenda Sharton; Ralph Mazzeo

Key clients

J.P. Morgan

GIC

Franklin Templeton

CommonBond

Altruist

Emles

iTrustCapital

ARK Investments

Raymond James

Work highlights

  • Advised J.P. Morgan on its acquisition of OpenInvest, a financial technology company that helps financial professionals customize and report on values-based investments.
  • Advised Franklin Templeton on the development of the world’s first blockchain-based mutual fund.
  • Represented Raymond James & Associates, as initial purchaser, in connection with a $308m private 144A asset backed securitization (blockchain HELOCs) and a $150m private 144a alternative mortgage loans securitization.

Greenberg Traurig LLP

Greenberg Traurig, LLP is a ‘leading edge, innovative, technology driven law firm‘ with a multi-faceted cradle-to-grave practice. The team’s experience covers a range of products and digital assets including cryptocurrencies, mobile and online payment systems, crowdfunding and banking platforms to name a few. This includes advice on shared service agreements, corporate finance, cybersecurity, IP, regulatory and litigation. The practice grew in 2021 with the recruitment of Chicago partner William Turner  from Steptoe & Johnson LLP, who is praised for his cryptocurrency expertise, and regulatory expert Benjamin Saul in Washington DC, formerly of Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP. The team is jointly led by the ‘innovative, informed, knowledgeable‘ Los Angeles-based corporate partner Barbara Jones, versatile Miami-based partner Carl Fornaris, and New York IP and technology partner David Greenberg.

Practice head(s):

David Greenberg; Carl Fornaris; Barbara Jones

Other key lawyers:

William Turner; Benjamin Saul

Testimonials

‘Greenberg Traurig provided services for us related to patenting and intellectual property. I could characterise GT team as highly skilled professionals.’

‘Thinking outside the box, high professionalism, deep knowledge in multiple areas including both technologies and law.’

‘It’s a leading edge, innovative, technology driven law firm. It has contributed to fintech legislation globally. The people are great to work alongside, very knowledgeable, professional and responsive.’

‘Most of my dealings are with Barbara Jones. She is innovative, informed, knowledgeable and a thought leader on emerging trends, technology, industries as well as the legal and regulatory implications and best practices.’

‘William Turner is hands down the best crypto commercial lawyer.’

Key clients

Leap Finance

Lendable Operations Ltd/Zendable, Inc.

Bitfinex Derivatives

PaySafe Group

AFEX – Associated Foreign Exchange

Concord Acquisition Corp.

Veritable Data Solutions

Capital Com

Currency Com

Capital One

Broadridge Financial Services

Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company

Work highlights

  • Advised fintech education lender Leap Finance, which is focused on facilitating loans to Indian, South Asian and MENA nationals studying in the US, in establishing US operations, including related regulatory, compliance and corporate finance issues.
  • Representing Paysafe in its acquisition of SafetyPay, a payments platform operating primarily in Latin America and focusing on eCommerce transactions via open banking and eCash.
  • Lead IP advisor to Broadridge Financial Services, a provider of trade-processing technology.

Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP

Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP has a ‘very responsive‘ team whose partners are ‘experts in their fields and have strong networks and relationships with relevant regulators and legislators‘. The firm represents a good mix of banks and financial institutions, as well as start-up and emerging fintech companies. The expanding practice has been actively building the regulatory and enforcement side of the practice, including the recruitment of Chicago partner Bryan Schneider from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Further experience is provided on transactional and strategic commercial issues, including advice on blockchain and cryptocurrency matters, such as NFTs, tokenization and decentralized finance. New York corporate finance partner Brian Korn leads the highly rated team, which includes Los Angeles-based regulatory and compliance partner Scott Pearson (‘an amazing partner to work with‘).

Practice head(s):

Brian Korn

Other key lawyers:

Scott Pearson; Bryan Schneider

Testimonials

‘Manatt is very responsive, partners are experts in their fields and have strong networks and relationships with relevant regulators and legislators. I appreciate the early alerts sent directly from the partners when relevant changes in law arise, as this supports my agility with business partners.’

‘Scott Pearson has consistently been an amazing partner to work with; he understands the issues that my company’s industry is most focused on, he regularly reaches out to maintain a strong relationship and he is a trusted advocate.’

 

Key clients

Advantage Insurance

Centrifuge

Cross River Bank

Idea Financial

Lidya Holdings

Market Rebellion LLC

Percent Technologies (formerly known as Cadence Group,)

Pier Asset Management

YieldStreet

York Capital Management

Work highlights

  • Outside counsel to Cross River Bank on regulatory compliance and bank partnership issues – including state licensing and CFPB, FDIC, and other regulatory agency compliance – in connection with its online lending platforms.
  • Represented Advantage Insurance, an insurance provider specializing in private placement life insurance and captive insurance management services, in its acquisition of BasePoint Capital Group, a leading lender for the fintech industry.
  • Representing YieldStreet, an online platform that offers investors access to alternative investments, in multiple offerings of specialty finance products including investment funds, fund of funds, and private equity and structured note conduits.

McGuireWoods LLP

McGuireWoods LLP has an experienced team of fintech lawyers spread throughout its US office network. The firm assists banks and fintech companies on the full range of corporate, finance, regulatory, litigation, and data privacy and security issues. In addition to corporate finance matters, the team regularly assists fintech companies on shared service and partnership agreements, including related IP licensing issues. Lead partners include Charlotte-based fintech head Rakesh Gopalan, a technology and securities lawyer with good expertise in outsourcing deals and IPOs. The firm is also strong on the contentious side, with Charlotte’s Susan Rodriguez, who co-leads the firm’s financial institutions team, a key contact for related litigation, regulatory and enforcement matters, and Chicago partner Sarah Zielinski, who is highly experienced in civil claims and compliance issues. Richmond-based partner James Anderson is a key partner on the corporate finance front.

Practice head(s):

Rakesh Gopalan; Molly White

Other key lawyers:

Sarah Zielinski; James Anderson

Key clients

AvidXchange Holdings Inc.

The Brink’s Co.

HealthiPASS Inc

VyStar Credit Union

Work highlights

  • Represented AvidXchange Holdings, an automating invoice and payment processes company, in a $194m tender offer repurchase of outstanding stock from its shareholders, and in its acquisition of Core Associates, an industry-leading AP workflow, invoice approval, document storage and forms-data management solutions company.
  • Representing KleerCard, a fintech payments solutions platform, on its requirements for a commercial lending license, regulatory and compliance issues presented by potential customer to customer payment services, and the use of certain customer accounts cash holdings as collateral.
  • Represented HealthiPass, a provider of cloud-based patient engagement software and revenue cycle management technology, in its sale to SphereCommerce, LLC, a provider of end-to-end integrated payments and security software.

Norton Rose Fulbright

Norton Rose Fulbright brings a reliable mix of domestic and international fintech expertise to clients who appreciate the ‘geographic reach of the firm‘ and its ‘highly skilled resources‘. The broad offering covers corporate finance, commercial agreements, regulatory, IP, litigation and data privacy. The practice also has good expertise in emerging areas such as blockchain, including custody solutions, tokenization, payments, and OTC and exchange trading. New York disputes partner Stephen Aschettino leads the practice and has over 20 years’ experience of related litigation, regulatory and compliance issues. Andrew Lom (New York) regularly assists investment funds on fintech products, while Dallas partner Ronald David Smith is another key contact for litigation and contentious regulatory matters. Senior counsel Santo Manna in New York brings  ‘excellent experience in fintech work, having been in-house at a number of leading vendors‘.

Practice head(s):

Stephen Aschettino

Other key lawyers:

Ronald Smith; Andrew Lom; Ronald Smith; Santo Manna

Testimonials

‘This year in particular the geographic reach of the firm has enabled us to leverage lower cost but highly skilled resources.’

‘Santo Manna has excellent experience in fintech work, having been in-house at a number of leading vendors, he understands the industry from the inside out.’

 

Key clients

O’Neil Global Advisors

Regen Foundation

Emergent Technology Holdings

WinterMute

NZIA Limited

Moneygram International, Inc.

Broadridge Financial Solutions

LPL Financial LLC

FISPAN Services, Inc.

Ropes & Gray LLP

Ropes & Gray LLP is especially busy on the transactional front. The team advised on several prominent SPAC mergers, often with a strong cross-border element, such as as Altimeter Growth’s $40bn combination with Singapore’s Grab Holdings. The firm’s market-leading private equity practice also generates a steady flow of related investment mandates. The team regularly assists underwriters and issuers on IPOs and bond listings. Additional support is provided on regulatory matters and high-end contractual negotiations including shared services agreements. Key partners include Boston-based Edward Black, who heads the firm’s global fintech practice and has a good track record in cryptocurrency, payments technology and robo-advisors. Black co-heads the TMT practice with Silicon Valley IP litigator Andrew Thomases. New York’s Scott Abramowitz is busy on the private equity side while Samer Musallam in Washington DC is a lead partner for fintech regulatory investigations and disputes.

Practice head(s):

Edward Black

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Thomases; Scott Abramowitz; Samer Musallam

Work highlights

  • Represented publicly held Altimeter Growth Corp., a special purpose acquisition company, in its pending $40bn business combination with Singapore-based technology company Grab Holdings a leading super-app for digital wallet payments, ride-hailing transport services and food delivery.
  • Advised iCapital Network, a financial technology firm, on several transactions including its acquisition of Morgan Stanley’s private fund administration platform.
  • Advised North Lane Technologies, formerly Wirecard North America, on its acquisition by Syncapay, a holding company for payment technology and solutions companies, including daVinci Payments.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP has a premier corporate finance and M&A track record that can often overshadow equally impressive practices in financial regulation and transactional IP. The three complementary skill-sets are pooled within the firm’s fintech initiative, which is jointly led from New York by by M&A co-head Jeffrey Brill, IP and technology co-head Stuart Levi, and financial institutions group co-head Sven Mickisch. Notable transactions include advising LendingClub Corporation on its takeover of Radius Bank, the first acquisition of a bank by a US fintech lender. The firm represents various blockchain and cryptocurrency clients, including Coinbase on regulatory matters. Another highlight was advising eToro Group on its $10.4bn SPAC merger with Fintech Acquisition Corp. V.

Practice head(s):

Jeffrey Brill; Stuart Levi; Sven Mickisch

Steptoe & Johnson LLP

Steptoe & Johnson LLP has an experienced regulatory and compliance practice that stands out for its track record in the cryptocurrency space. This includes advice on investigations and enforcement proceedings, as well as specific issues such as taxation, anti-money laundering, counter-terrorist financing and other areas of financial compliance. The firm stands out for its creation and leadership of the Blockchain Alliance, which it created for the Chamber of Digital Commerce and Coin Center. Partners such as Washington DC-based practice co-chair Alan Cohn bring a huge amount of experience to the table, thanks in part to their time at government organizations such as the Department of Homeland Security. Fellow co-chair Jason Weinstein is a seasoned white-collar crime lawyer who previously worked at the US Department of Justice. The ‘constantly engaging and outgoingMicah Green in DC is also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Alan Cohn; Jason Weinstein

Testimonials

‘Alan Cohn, Jason Weinstein, Jack Ritossa are all stars in the field of blockchain, digital assets, cryptocurrencies regulation. In particular, Alan and Jason are pioneers in the space and have been with us on the crypto/blockchain journey for nearly a decade now. Very few lawyers can say that.’

‘Leadership, volunteering hours and hours of time to co-chairing and sitting on blockchain, digital asset and crypto working groups. They do not get paid for this work. And all of the work is open source, open access. They do this for the global blockchain and crypto community as well as all interested parties.’

‘Steptoe has an exceptional FinTech practice with highly respected, well connected and thoughtful counsel, able to look at the big picture and well versed in the minutia.’

‘Steptoe has a deep bench of DC-focused experts.’

‘Alan Cohn is a great quarterback for blockchain companies looking for line-of-sight into DC and informed strategic guidance.’

‘Micah Green – constantly engaging and outgoing, combines subject matter expertise, regulatory and industry relationships.’

Key clients

iFinex, Tether

Chamber of Digital Commerce

Work highlights

  • Representing iFinex and Tether in connection with investigations relating to Bitfinex and/or Tether by multiple enforcement agencies, including the New York Attorney General’s Office and the CFTC.
  • Advised the Chamber of Digital Commerce in preparing comments to the Department of the Treasury, Financial Crimes Enforcement Network’s rule-making commonly referred to as the ‘self-hosted wallet rule’, and its follow-up request for comments.