Biography

Neil Foster is a partner in Brown Rudnick’s Corporate Practice Group and Global Co-Chair and European Head of Technology. His practice includes mergers & acquisitions, venture capital & private equity, and corporate finance. His principal sector experience is in the areas of technology and telecommunications, media and entertainment, life sciences and energy technology.

Neil has over 20 years of experience advising on complex transactions and he represents many large U.S., Middle Eastern, South African and Asian corporations on their UK and European deals.

Neil has been ranked as a "Leading Individual" by Chambers for Corporate/M&A every year since 2010 and Chambers has praised Neil for his "precision, commercially dexterous advice and cross-border knowledge". Legal 500 has described Neil as "a hard act to follow in mid-market technology M&A".

Links to Neil’s recent Q&A with Andrew Gaule on “Directors’ Role and the legal aspects of Corporate Venture Capital in times of the Covid crisis” and his Global Corporate Venturing panel on “Covid crisis in the UK and Europe and support for Portfolio Companies”, are to be found below.

 

 

 

 

 

Awards

Representation

Advised on Europe’s largest private equity deal in the IT sector in 2010, advising Sophos plc on the sale by the founders and TA Associates to Apax for $830 million.

Advised a listed Asian corporation on the sale of two of their UK subsidiaries, the first being a digital optical technology company and the second being a 3D graphics semi-conductor company.

Advised Acorn Media Group on the acquisition of a majority stake in Agatha Christie Limited and then on the sale of Acorn Media Group to NYSElisted RLJ Entertainment for $105 million.

Advised Sasol New Energy on its £15 million corporate venturing investment in Oxis Energy, a UK batteries technology company.

Advised on the UK part of the complex group reorganization of a U.S. cable company in Chapter 11, including the sale of U.S. and Japanese cable assets by a UK intermediate holding company, the distribution of assets to its U.S. parent and eventual winding up of the UK company.

Advised a UK plastics recycling technology business on its launch and three rounds of funding.

Advised a UK corporate VC on its Series B investment into a Silicon Valley based sensor technology company.

Advised a large U.S. listed group on its acquisition of a children’s television channel, and a 10 year joint venture for the distribution of children’s TV content.

Advised a UK electric motors company on its corporate venturing funding by and joint venture with a global engineering group.

Advised Vodafone on its joint venture with Everything Everywhere and Telefonica for digital wallet and related products and services (Project Weve).

Advised Cambridge Cognition Holdings plc on its IPO on AIM and associated fund-raising.

Advised Mesaplexx’s private equity owners and management on the sale of Mesaplexx to Nokia Systems & Networks.

Advised a UK corporate VC on its Series B investment into Owlstone, a UK-based cancer diagnostics technology company.

Advised ABB Technology Ventures on its Series A and Series B investments into Cambridge Medical Robotics, a UK-based surgical robotics company.

Education

College of Law, York, Legal Practice Course, 1994
College of Law, London – C.P.E., 1993
University of Durham – B.A., 1992

Bar Admissions

England and Wales
Speaking Engagements
Neil is a regular speaker at venture capital, technology, media, biotechnology and corporate finance events. He was a mentor to CEOs of emerging companies at the European Venture Academies in Copenhagen and London, concentrating on fund raising strategies and techniques
Neil presented a session on directors' duties and roles with Aimava, 30 April 2020
Neil contributed to one of GCV's editorials "Venture needs to tread carefully in the geopolitical world", which was published in April 2020
Awards and Honors
Neil is Recommended in The Legal 500 2020 for Venture Capital, where he is described as "business savvy"
Neil is ranked by Chambers & Partners UK's listing for Corporate/M&A: Mid-Market. Clients report that "he's very responsive and commercial in his approach; we find him flexible and willing to work co-operatively with the other side"
Ranked by Thomson Reuters’ "Super Lawyers-London" 2013, 2014 and 2015 for Mergers & Acquisitions
Ranked by Thomson Reuters’ "Super Lawyers-Business Edition" 2013, 2014 and 2015 for Business Transactions
Listed in Chambers UK, 2017, as a "Recognized Practitioner" in Private Equity: Venture Capital Investment
Recognized by Chambers Europe, 2014 & 2015, for Corporate/M&A: UK Focus
Professional Memberships
Neil chairs the BBFA Crypto-Assets working group, and has published numerous papers on the regulation of crypto-assets.
Neil is on the Advisory Committee for Global Corporate Venturing (GCV) magazine (2011 to date) and was a judge for GCV’s Annual Awards in 2011 and 2012. He was also the first lawyer internationally to be invited to join the “Faculty” for the Global Corporate Venturing Academy, where he teaches "Deal Execution and Terms" and also "International Directors' Duties and Governance"