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Fintech boost: Simmons picks first recipients of free legal advice

Simmons & Simmons has announced credit-investment platform Alterest Investment Technologies, hourly car-insurance provider Cuvva, banking platform RailBank and invoicing firm Tallysticks as the first four recipients of free legal advice through its new fintech fund.

Launched in May this year, the fund is the first of its kind in the UK to commit a maximum of £25,000 per year, per start-up, of legal advice designed to help promising fintech businesses at an early stage. The fund was created and is led by head of the firm’s fintech team Angus McLean.

McLean said: ‘Fintech businesses are pretty sophisticated compared to previous tech businesses, so they deal with much more complicated regulatory issues even before they’re established.’

‘For these start-ups, the fintech fund could make a real difference, or could even be what gets them off the ground; and it’s through this support that we hope to make a significant contribution to the wider fintech community.’ he added.

The firm is yet to provide further details on each of the businesses’ plans in relation to the fund, but Simmons will provide a maximum of £100,000 per year across the four start-ups.

To qualify for support through the fund, fintech businesses had to have received no more than £1m of investment and been accepted onto one of the leading UK fintech accelerator programmes or been referred to Simmons by an established fintech-focused venture capital investor.

An Accenture report from April shows global fintech investment in 2015 grew 75%, or $9.6bn, to $22.3bn in 2015. The creation of the fund and announcement of beneficiaries signifies Simmons’ commitment to the hottest sector in technology, which is predicted to hit $46bn globally by 2020.