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Welcome to Farrer & Co’s EW2020! Below you will find details of all the 25 online events we are hosting during the week of 21 – 25 September.

To book your place for one or more of these events, please click here or the registration button.

For the sessions marked ‘masterclass’, due to their interactive format and to best enable engagement, we are limiting places to no more than 30 people. Additionally, for these sessions our audience focus is on founders, entrepreneurs and those who invest in entrepreneurial businesses, so please only sign up if you fall into these categories.

The 5pm sessions are free for all in the entrepreneurial ecosystem to attend, and will run as web seminars, during which panels of experts will share their insights on key topics.

Monday 21 September 2020

  • Time: 10.00 am - 11.00 am

    Your business has completed early funding rounds, you have been successfully revenue generating for some time and probably thinking of expansion, in terms of headcount and market. What are the things you need to do next, from a legal point of view? What have you forgotten, didn’t know or haven’t yet had the time or budget to get to?

    In this session, Marie Bates and Tom Bruce, partners in our corporate team, will guide you through how to avoid common mistakes and what you need to do next to prepare for your next phase.

  • Time: 11.30 am - 12.30 pm

    Investment is at the heart of all successful businesses. In this session, David Gubbay and James Bromley in our tax team, will guide both investors and entrepreneurs alike through the opportunities that exist for attracting and making investments in a tax efficient manner, taking advantage of the government schemes available.

  • Time: 2.00 pm - 3.00 pm

    The commercial real estate market, always a good barometer for the health of the UK economy, is facing interesting, if uncertain, times. As we look ahead to the post-Covid world, a key feature of the commercial property industry is likely to be the much-talked about trilogy of environmental, social and governance – better known as ESG – and the impact that these factors will have on investors.

    In this session, Mark Gauguier, head of commercial property at Farrer & Co, will chair a panel discussion with industry experts focusing on key themes concerning ESG and commercial property investment – including a look at different types of ESG in a property context; the trends contributing to the rise in the significance of ESG in real estate; how best to manage the risk and impact of ESG on an investor’s portfolio; and a look at threats and opportunities for the future.

  • Time: 3.30 pm - 4.30 pm

    One of the reasons London and the wider UK has become a hub for entrepreneurs has been the access to talent. Talent from across the EU, enabled by free movement, contributing to a diversity of thought and creativity. However post-Brexit, will there still be this same access? What will the likely effect on fast growth businesses be? And what of Covid?

    In this session, Elena Hinchin and Anna Birtwistle, partners from our immigration and employment teams respectively, discuss the likely issues arising from both Brexit and Covid.

  • Time: 5pm - 6pm

    Obtaining the right group of investors can be critical to the success of your business.

    In the last few months Entrepreneurs and Investors alike have had to contend with a fast moving and dynamic market. In this session, led by David Fletcher a partner in our corporate team, we will explore the views of a cross range of leading investors to understand their current approach, what are they focussing on and how do they see the opportunities for growing businesses developing over the next 12 months and beyond.

    Our panel will be made up of the full range of investors, from angel to VC, family office to PE, to provide the audience with a 360 degree view of the market. All have different criteria in terms of what they look for in a business, all have different processes and lead times. We look forward to finding out more about the latest developments.

Tuesday 22 September 2020

  • Time: 10am - 11am

    In every business there comes a time when a difficult conversation needs to be had. What is not always clear are the implications of how that conversation is had, or whether it is even had at all. Very often, the consequences of a poorly managed conversation or the putting off of such a conversation can extend not just to the bottom line but beyond, in terms of wider reputation damage and harm to future earning potential.

    In this session, Ali Hollingshead, partner in our private client team and qualified mediator, will discuss with leading mediators from IPOS mediation strategies for delivering difficult messages in a manner that minimises conflict and business interruption.

  • Time: 11.30 am - 12.30 pm

    Contracts are a part of everyday business life. A well drafted contract can reduce uncertainty and the likelihood of disputes, reflect the level of risk you are willing to accept, and provide solutions when things do not go to plan. However, make the terms too rigid and you may struggle to comply with your obligations should circumstances change. Too loose and counter-parties may be unprepared to accept the lack of certainty provided.

    In this session, Paul Jones and Jane Randell from the commercial team, look at striking the perfect balance between certainty and flexibility and making your contracts work for you.

  • Time: 2.00 pm - 3.15 pm

    Growing a business from a purely domestic one into a global market requires much more engagement online. Covid has given online business growth an additional push and presented challenges as well as opportunities in this respect.

    In this session, Anthony Turner and Ian De Freitas will host a panel drawn from our extensive global network of independent law firms who will discuss what it takes to expand internationally in an online environment. Focusing on a retail client, the session will cover practical, legal and regulatory requirements in a range of key jurisdictions.

  • Time: 3.30 pm - 4.30 pm

    In this session, Rachel Lewis and Hannah Taylor focus on the key employment law issues, trends and changes facing entrepreneurs, helping them to build a toolkit to tackle these issues in the right way, and in harmony with the business priorities.

  • Time: 5.00 pm - 6.00 pm

    In this session we will hear from some of the UK’s leading female entrepreneurs on the challenges they have faced, how they have overcome them and inspired other female entrepreneurs, but how more still needs to be done to level the playing field with their male counterparts. Issues such as the funding gap, psychological barriers and bias against women, the fear of failure and the lack or networks and mentors will all be discussed.

Wednesday 23 September 2020

  • Time: 10.00 am - 11.00 am

    In the second of the two tax sessions, David Gubbay and Charlotte Black will explore the different types of share option and alternative incentive schemes on offer from the government, how they work, whether they are suitable for your business, and the tax advantages available.

  • Time: 11.30 am - 12.30 pm

    Recent events have brought home how important estate planning is not only to business owners and their families but also to the businesses themselves. In this session, Bryony Cove and Sarah von Schmidt, partners in our private client team, will give you some key tips and highlight priorities for you to think about around succession planning. We will be touching on Wills, letters of wishes, LPAs, tax planning and family governance, plus having an eye to corporate governance which impacts on succession.

  • Time: 2.00 pm - 3.00 pm

    Whether you are preparing to exit your first business or are a seasoned serial entrepreneur, there are some key steps to follow when preparing for and maximising value on a sale. In this session, Tom Bruce and Richard Lane, partners in our corporate team, will discuss some of the key points from valuation to timing; and whether a full or partial sale (and to whom) is the right strategic option.

  • Time: 3.30pm - 4.30pm

    It is not a case of if a business will face a crisis, but rather of when. Data leaks, cyber security, malicious online content to name a few can all strike quickly. How businesses respond to a crisis can often make the difference between longer term success and failure. It used to be the first hours of a crisis were critical, now it is how you respond in the first few minutes that dictate how well a business manages its way through a crisis. Do you have a plan? Who’s involved? Will your decision-making hold up under pressure?

    In this session, Julian Pike, partner, and head of our reputation management team, will explore an unfolding fictitious crisis scenario and the necessary steps needed to safeguard the business.

  • Time: 5pm - 6pm

    The pace of digital transformation has significantly accelerated over the last few months, creating exciting new opportunities for Entrepreneurs across a range of sectors.

    Technologies such as blockchain and AI have moved on from the concepts to solving real world problems. There is an ever increasing demand from businesses for new technology and innovation and entrepreneurs are often able to move with the speed and agility required to meet these demand.

    In this session, David Fletcher will be joined by a number of our clients from across the Digital Economy, with a focus on the use of AI and data. We will explore the use of digital technologies, the opportunities and challenges presented and likely future usage of digital technology as a ‘business norm’.

Thursday 24 September 2020

  • Time: 10.00 am - 11.00 am

    A strong brand provides a way for your customers to identify your business, and to refer your products or services to others. A strong brand is valuable. Like any valuable asset, a brand should be protected. Failure to protect your brand may reduce its value and could damage your business' reputation.

    In this session, Peter Wienand, founder of and senior partner in the IP and Commercial team, will detail appropriate strategies round protecting copyright, trade mark and brand.

  • Time: 11.30 am - 12.30 pm

    Fund raising is central to businesses in this sector, whether it be debt, equity or even some of the new government funding schemes, from CBILS to the Future Fund. However, which is the best option and does your business qualify?

    In this session, Martin Blake and Simon Ward from our Banking and Corporate teams, will explain what businesses can do to help secure the investment they require.

  • Time: 2.00 pm - 3.00 pm

    Family businesses are often proponents of a patient and long-term outlook with a broadly conservative approach to strategy and change. In a global economy that is rapidly changing and with the increasing importance of new technologies and new working arrangements, how do these family owned businesses, the bedrock of our economies, remain relevant, survive and flourish?

    The answer continues to be by the support and influence of entrepreneurship within the family business – by the handing down and the nurturing through the generations of the creative spark and dynamism, present in the Founder, to drive business growth into the future. 

    But what if the spark misses a generation? What if the next generation want to take the spark and launch their own business?

    In this session, Richard Lane, corporate partner and head of the Family Business team at Farrer & Co, Sam Bruehl, principal at BanyanGlobal and Farida El Agamy, general manager at Tharawat, will discuss the importance of entrepreneurship within family businesses with “nextgen” family members and other experts from the US and the Middle East. They will be looking at trends and emerging themes, and asking how business families can and should nurture entrepreneurship within the family and how this benefits the business for the future.

  • Time: 3.30 pm - 4.30 pm

    The developers and entrepreneurs behind education technology have the opportunity to transform learning and education. From AI backed products that analyse learning strengths and weaknesses and virtual classrooms on the one hand, to the effect on traditional teaching methods, locations and funding on the other, the scope for technology to continue to transform this sector is huge.

    In this session, David Copping, partner from our IP & Technology team, will look at the deployment of EdTech in a real-world setting, and consider how to get the legal foundations right in order to support successful growth.

  • Time: 5.00 pm - 6.00 pm

    Marie Bates, partner from our Corporate team, will chair a panel discussion on how companies can be more socially responsible, and why it matters.

    The panel will consider factors which have been driving change in business behaviour, from consumer pressure to enhanced reporting obligations. Experts will provide practical tips on how to achieve change across all kinds of businesses. This session is a must for all businesses on their journey of becoming more sustainable and responsible.

Friday 25 September 2020

  • Time: 10.00 am - 11.00 am

    Foundations set out a clear intent and long-term commitment for delivering positive change. They help companies focus corporate philanthropy in a strategic and impact driven way and allow those efforts to align with a company’s values.

    In this session, Elizabeth Jones, partner in our charities team explores the initial set up of a foundation, outlines governance considerations particularly in the relationship between the foundation and company, and looks at setting up a grant or social investment programme.

  • Time: 11.30 am - 12.30 pm

    In this session, Andy Peterkin, head of Fintech at Farrer & Co, will examine the key drivers behind the current environment facing Fintechs.

  • Time: 2.00 pm - 3.00 pm

    In this session, we will explore the role of entrepreneurs in the luxury industry, from concierge apps and brand innovation to virtual department stores, to the bricks and mortar flagship stores. Siobhan Jones, head of our luxury brands team, will chair a panel discussion on entrepreneurship in the luxury industry.

  • Time: 3.30 pm – 4.30 pm

    Some disputes are inevitable. Some can and should be steered towards an early resolution. And some are entirely preventable.

    Kate Allass is a commercial litigator with nearly 20 years of experience in helping clients to resolve business disputes involving suppliers, business partners and customers. In this session she will explore:

    • the key mistakes to avoid which can otherwise exacerbate a dispute or lead to litigation;
    • techniques for resolving disputes; and
    • how to litigate well.
  • For the final session of EW2020 we invite you to participate in a virtual escape room! Open to all, and with more details to follow, places will be limited so please do sign up now if you would like to attend. Expect teamwork, challenges and lots of problem solving to feature!

    Due to the nature of the event, if having signed up you are subsequently unable to attend, please do let us know as soon as possible.

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