Addleshaw Goddard launches £500k mentoring program for FinTech startups

Fiona Ghosh Addleshaw GoddardOh to be a FinTech startup right now, as Addleshaw Goddard becomes the latest major law firm to launch a programme (in this case worth up to £500,000) to support FinTech growth in the UK.
The programme is designed to support more established, as well as brand new FinTech start ups over a 12 month period. ‘AG Elevate’, which will launch at an event in London on the 17th November,  provides a package of free legal advice alongside a mentoring programme. An initial cohort of 16 FinTechs will be able to access a legal mentor drawn from AG’s most experienced FinTech lawyers, who will help them position themselves for growth.
AG will work with their promotional partners, FinTech Connect, a global platform and community for the FinTech industry, and PayExpo, the UK’s largest payments event, to team up with a number of FinTech accelerator programmes to find businesses with a good fit with AG and who are right for the programme.
AG Elevate consists of two programmes  –  one targeting ‘early-stage’ start-ups with no more than £1 million of investment, and one directed at start-ups with ‘Series A’ funding of more than £1 million. Both packages offer mentoring services and free legal advice, together with access to AG’s training sessions and networking events.
The application process will be announced at the launch event on the 17th of November 2016, along with details on the criteria for selection.
Fiona Ghosh, head of AG’s FinTech Group (pictured, behind a slightly odd green bar), commented: “We don’t just want to jump on the FinTech bandwagon and entice firms with a bit of free legal advice.  We want to be at the heart of helping firms we work with to be a success.  FinTechs often come to market quickly and need nimble advisers that they can work collaboratively with, who are responsive,  as well as people they can talk to, who can offer guidance and support, rather than just providers of hard edged legal advice.”
Slaughter and May on 31 October announced a £300,000 fund that will see the elite City firm give free advice and support to up to ten UK-based new and emerging fintech businesses.
The Fintech Fast Forward programme, which is being led by Slaughter and May’s head of technology and outsourcing Rob Sumroy and financial institutions partner Ben Kingsley, will also formally launch on 17 November. Any UK-based start-up or scale-up business operating in fintech and similar fields, including insurtech, regtech, datatech and blockchain/distributed ledger technology may apply.