Law firm offers creative solution to investment opportunities | 01 February 11
TOP 100 UK law firm Ward Hadaway is extending its services to the North West’s creative sector by offering advice on venture capital investments from a new multi-million pound fund.
The firm opened up its Manchester office at The Sharp Project digital, media and creative complex last summer.
Since then, the expertise of its specialist Creative Industries team, headed by partner Laura Harper, has been in demand from a wide range of creative enterprises, including advertising and design agencies, fashion houses, digital marketing companies, games developers, production companies, artists and musicians.
The firm has expanded its offering in Manchester with the recruitment of corporate finance lawyer Melanie Gavin (pictured right with Laura Harper on left), who has widespread expertise in a range of areas including company acquisitions and disposals, investments and management buy-outs.
This combined strength now enables the firm to offer creative and digital companies and entrepreneurs expert, in-depth advice on accessing finance from the North West Fund for Digital & Creative.
This fund provides investment finance of between £50,000 and £2m to digital and creative enterprises in the North West and is aimed at businesses at all stages of development, from start-ups to more mature enterprises looking for further expansion.
Potential applicants need to be based in the North West, involved in the digital and/or creative sectors, have a business plan and a product or service which is innovative and/or has genuine growth potential.
Laura Harper, partner and head of creative industries team at Ward Hadaway, said: “The North West Fund for Digital & Creative offers real scope for a wide range of the kind of enterprises which we work with to access finance and expertise that could transform their businesses.
“Everyone from advertising and design companies, digital marketeers, artists and architects to production companies, games developers and music businesses could be eligible for funding.
“We believe that we are uniquely well placed to help enterprises access this funding since we can call on specialist advice from Ward Hadaway’s corporate finance team to match the Creative Industries team’s wealth of knowledge and experience in dealing with digital and creative businesses.”
Ward Hadaway, which also has offices in Leeds and Newcastle, has inside expertise on these types of public venture capital funds.
The firm advised on the establishment of a specialist creative fund in the North East - the £2.4m Creative Content Fund, which invests in companies involved in making films, TV productions, video games, interactive media and music.
Ward Hadaway has followed on from this initial advice to advise on several investments from the fund into the creative content sector, including backing for two film productions – One Night In Turin, a documentary on the 1990 World Cup, and a film called United, which tells the story of Manchester United’s famous and ill-fated ‘Busby Babes’ team and the 1958 Munich air disaster.
Martin Hulls, partner and head of corporate finance at Ward Hadaway, said: “We think our range of experience advising on these funds, especially in the creative sector, gives companies we help a real advantage in securing funding on the right terms and at the right cost.
“This inside expertise puts us in a fantastic position to help companies access these funds by having a detailed knowledge of the complex eligibility criteria.
“We feel that the team we have can give creative and digital enterprises looking to expand real, practical help with our venture capital know-how and in-depth knowledge of the digital and creative sectors.”
Further details on the North West Fund for Digital & Creative can be found at www.thenorthwestfund.co.uk/the-funds/digital-and-creative
* Find out more about our Creative Industries services.