Law In Order With The Jonathan Lea Network
by Ruth Lawrence
The Jonathan Lea Network is a new and innovative law firm that specialises in advising businesses, from technology start-ups to mature private companies and publicly listed corporations. Ruth Lawrence meets the man behind the firm
I met Jonathan at his premises in Haywards Heath. Last year alone the firm tripled its turnover and the team has grown accordingly. The firm believes it is well placed to now increase this rate of development even further.
A significant driver of Jonathan’s success has been his use of social media, however Jonathan sees the firm’s website as the main platform for further growth. By publishing useful legal content on its blog, The Jonathan Lea Network website now attracts over 250,000 unique visitors per year. This traffic results in a constant stream of highly qualified leads and has enabled the firm to grow a national and international client base.
Jonathan plans to not only build the retained team in Haywards Heath, but also to develop a significant network of self-employed solicitors with different specialisms who can take advantage of modern technologies to work remotely as contractors of the firm. Already, his firm regularly works with a Montreal based UK qualified intellectual property lawyer. Jonathan also intends to further exploit the success of the website by shortly adding e-commerce functionality whereby visitors will be able to pay to download certain legal templates and guidelines.
The firm focuses on advising many start-ups. Within this niche, they have earned a reputation as experts on the UK government SEIS and EIS tax relief schemes which are aimed at encouraging wealthy individuals to invest in young businesses. This year alone the firm has so far acted for almost 30 companies in successfully applying for HMRC advance assurance whereby the government confirms that a company meets the SEIS and EIS qualifying criteria.
Aside from their start-up work, other examples of the firm’s recent deals include advising a local entrepreneur on the purchase of a Mid Sussex golf club, the sellers of a 70 year old Sloane Square based property investment company that sold for several million, the French founders of a London burger business on an investment by a Saudi family office and the board of a publicly listed software company on its various commercial contracts.
Jonathan himself grew up in Sussex and after graduating from Bristol University he trained with the pre-eminent international City firm Clyde & Co. He worked as a corporate solicitor for five years in London before joining a regional firm in Cornwall.
Now that he is back and settled in Sussex, Jonathan’s ambition is to create a highly trusted, enduring legal brand. Jonathan is utterly committed to the firm’s clients and his far-reaching vision of developing his team further and growing a sizeable market leading business in Sussex.