(L-R) Awards host Andrew Ryan; Filipe Mayer, partner, CCA ONTIER; awards judge Paul Heugh, founder and CEO, Skarbek Associates

Finalists: Ashfords (joint highly commended); Capital Law; DLA Piper; Hogan Lovells; Keystone Law; Litwak & Partners; Morrison & Foerster (joint highly commended); Taylor Vinters.

Portuguese law firm CCA ONTIER claimed the business development award for establishing a multidisciplinary team that focuses on Lisbon’s burgeoning startup sector.

The firm’s ‘Startinnovation Team’ comprises lawyers with expertise in areas such as venture capital and private equity, tax, data protection, intellectual property and M&A, providing startups and small businesses with relevant legal support and advice. The team prides itself on being able to offer tailored solutions for each client and has worked closely with a number of startup companies from launch through to their international breakthrough.

As it seeks to grow this business line, the firm has engaged with a number of events aimed at the startup community, such as sponsoring the Lisbon WebSummit, as well as hosting its own ‘Startupmania’ event – a series of workshops with talks from successful entrepreneurs and investors.

In addition, the firm has partnered with the University of Oporto’s science and technology park, where it organised a legal bootcamp with seminars outlining the potential challenges and concerns startups face, as well as sponsoring a pitch day at the park where the winner was awarded 20 hours of free legal services.

“A wide-ranging scheme which has produced clear, measurable results,” remarked a judge.

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