OVER THE LAST TWO YEARS, PINSENT MASONS HAS BEEN THE LEGAL PARTNER FOR ENTREPRENEURIAL SPARK POWERED BY NATWEST, BRINGING OUR MARKET LEADING LEGAL ADVICE AND GUIDANCE TO THOUSANDS OF ENTREPRENEURS, AND SUPPORTING ENTREPRENEURIAL SPARK’S VISION OF ACCELERATING AND SCALING BUSINESSES ACROSS THE UK.
It has been a truly incredible time to be part of the Entrepreneurial Spark universe. Since Pinsent Masons partnered with the programme in 2016, we have seen the number of Hubs double, the number of entrepreneurs triple, and the scale and sophistication of the businesses go through the roof. Not to mention the launch of the much anticipated London Hub. The one thing that has not changed, however, is the passion and the drive behind each and every one of the entrepreneurs.
That passion and drive inspires our volunteers every time they go into a Hub, and it’s starting to spread. Over the last two years, we have gotten around 150 volunteers involved, who have provided over 4,500 hours of free legal advice and guidance to businesses across England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Getting so many volunteers engaged in the programme has allowed us to challenge our own perceptions of what it is that businesses actually need day to day, and given us valuable insight into future marketplace trends that we can take to our clients and use to differentiate Pinsent Masons from our competitors. This holds value for our trainees as well as our partners from both a developmental and educational standpoint, and helps explain the programmes popularity right across the business.
Working with the entrepreneurs in the Hubs also gives our people the valuable opportunity to get out from behind a desk and move out of their comfort zone. The breadth of questions our volunteers get asked by entrepreneurs can be a little daunting to even our most seasoned lawyers, but it forces them to, as the Enablers would put it, get comfortable being uncomfortable. This is already having a tangible, positive impact on our business. We finished in the top 10 most innovative law firms in Europe at the 2017 Innovative Lawyer Awards, and received a special commendation for our work supporting start-ups.
Examples of this support include:
- Introducing Belfast’s Trimedika to the MD of a large product testing and certification provider.
- Helping Birmingham’s Mobile Pay Systems navigate a substantial funding round.
- Offering webinars and workshops on intellectual property, GDPR, and raising investment.
We look forward to building on our relationships with Entrepreneurial Spark, the other partners, and the entrepreneurs, as we move on to the next phase of the partnership. Being the legal partner has always been unique, challenging, and exciting in equal measure, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.