Introducing… Andrew McGlashan

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Introducing… Andrew McGlashan

Meet Andrew McGlashan, Acuity Corporate Partner, London.

When Andrew McGlashan was younger, he wanted to be a chef. But, after watching lawyers on TV, he decided that arguing for a living sounded like fun – and a legal career was seeded.

“I did Physics and Maths at A Level, along with History,” he says.

“My subjects were quite eclectic, but also restrictive. With Law, you get to explore intellectually – interpreting and negotiating. There’s far more scope for debate compared to Maths, where the answer is the answer.”

Andrew studied Law in Bristol (both the University of Bristol and UWE Bristol) and eventually found himself qualifying at City of London law firm Fox Williams. After four years, he joined BDB Pitmans, also in the City, where he spent nearly a decade, eventually rising to Legal Director. 

Alongside his domestic and cross-border M&A, capital markets and private equity practice, Andrew has a niche in advising start-up businesses on their corporate needs. He represents start-ups, founders, university spinouts, universities and incubators.

“It started because I was introduced to someone who was starting up a healthy ketchup company and wanted some legal advice. The three of us met up in a pub, he brought some of his ketchup samples, we bought some chips, and we chatted,” Andrew recalls.

“He told me he was on an incubator programme at a leading London university. I said if you have all the support on this programme, why do you need to talk to me? It transpired he had no one to answer legal questions.”

Andrew had spotted an opportunity to better support entrepreneurs. He started doing drop-in sessions, and from there was introduced to other London-based university incubators. A passion was born.

He hasn’t yet had a client appear on Dragons’ Den but, over the years, Andrew has advised a huge variety of fledgling companies, from ketchup to hair and beauty, crypto products to organic plastic alternatives. Some now have multimillion-pound valuations and continue to grow at impressive rates, despite the economic turbulence of recent times.

“Growth areas at the moment, unsurprisingly, are anything with an AI angle, MedTech (particularly female MedTech) and environmental and sustainable products,” he says.

As start-ups and spin-outs progress, Andrew advises both founders and investors along the journey. The legal and business issues are myriad as equity splits are negotiated, IP is protected and informal relationships crystallise into legal structures and documentation. In particular, he has worked with a number of female entrepreneurs.

“I’d like to do more in that space,” he says: “The stats on investment into female-led start-ups are outrageous and thoroughly depressing so I’d like to do anything I can to help change that trend – as I know so many incredible female founders.”

For Andrew, part of the fun of advising entrepreneurs is the opportunity to get involved in the whole process of founding and scaling a business. Through his long experience in the sector, he has built a contact book of investors, professional advisors and service providers, as well as a wealth of business nous that can benefit those starting out on their corporate journey with mentorship.

“I like to be a consigliere,” says Andrew. “But not in the Mafia sense.”

Andrew’s love of the start-up ecosystem has found a natural home here at Acuity, as part of our innovative and entrepreneurial law firm with an ambitious, future-focused strategy. He’ll also be representing listed companies, nominated advisors and brokers in relation to IPOs, fundraisings and reverse takeovers alongside sale- and buy-side in M&A transactions.

We are delighted to welcome Andrew to our Acuity Corporate team. If you’d like to find out more about how Acuity can support you with corporate matters, drop us a line.  

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