Cooley launches in Miami targeting local tech and VC work

Firm joins host of rivals including Sidley Austin and Kirkland & Ellis in opening in fast-growing business hub

Cooley has become the latest law firm to set up shop in Miami as it targets local tech and venture capital work.

The firm said the new office – its 19th globally – would work with clients based in Florida and Latin America on capital raises, regulatory and compliance matters and accessing global capital markets. 

It will be led by corporate and M&A partner Derek Colla, who will relocate from Cooley’s Washington DC office. Initially the firm will have four other lawyers in Miami, whom it declined to name in its announcement but said would also relocate from its existing bases. 

Colla said that a number of the firm’s major tech and venture capital clients were already based in Florida, and having a physical presence in the city “will allow us to deepen our existing relationships even more.

“We are also excited to extend our reach within Miami’s increasingly international business community to provide the full capabilities of Cooley’s platform,” he added. 

Cooley said the core Miami team would work closely with the firm’s bench of practitioners already active in the market, with “future organic growth anticipated”.

It added that senior figures in its capital markets, M&A, fund formation and emerging companies practices – including Matthew Bartus, David Peinsipp, Adam Dinow, Jordan Silber, Kristin VanderPas and Miguel Vega – would be actively involved in the office’s launch and early operations. 

The tech-focused firm’s Miami launch sees it join a number of prominent US firms including Sidley Austin, Kirkland & Ellis, Winston & Strawn, King & Spalding and Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan in setting up shop in the city amid its rise as a business centre. UK firm Osborne Clarke also opened an office there in September to boost its US arbitration and tech law strategy. 

“Miami has quickly become a go-to destination for some of the best and brightest talent in the tech and venture capital community,” said Joe Conroy, chairman and CEO of Cooley. “We are excited to grow our presence in the region.”  

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