Karl Foster

Partner - Commercial

Karl Foster

Karl Foster

Partner - Commercial

Highly experienced lawyer specialising in Fintech, Technology, Media and Telecoms and Financial Services.

Former general counsel and management team member, with a highly commercial outlook, Karl leverages his considerable in-house experience to truly understand and meet client needs. He has extensive transactional, regulatory, and compliance experience on an international basis, having worked for global institutions. In particular, Karl has been responsible for legal affairs for a number of Asian and African jurisdictions. Karl is a recognised expert in fintech, insurtech, regulatory and technology matters. His strategic focus is on the use and implications of technology as a disruptive process and the management of risk whilst achieving commercial aims.

Engaged by specialist training provider MBL to create content as a speaker for fintech and financial services webinars and seminars and Law Brief Publishing to write books on fintech and biometrics. Contributor to international, national, and trade press. Invited to mentor start and scaleups at forthcoming incubator and acceleration labs.

Specialisms:

  • Financial services/fintech - substantial advisory experience. In particular, international, product development, and distribution experience, including advising upon the FCA Handbook and perimeter issues for a range of clients within the banking, insurance and fintech sphere. Advises on e-money, blockchain and associated matters, including apps, platform development, market data and privacy issues.
  • Insurance - substantial advisory experience, particularly within the international context. In particular, product development, coverage and claims experience. He has product development and distribution experience, including advising upon the FCA Handbook and perimeter issues, drafting and negotiating appointed representative agreements and TOBAs. Former head of legal for a broker and regional legal manager for carrier.
  • TMT specialising in IT/IP including licensing and disputes. Particular expertise in digital rights and distribution (film, TV, music, games), UGC, e- and m- commerce. Has negotiated global outsourcings and re-sourcings including 'cloud' (PAAS, IAAS, SAAS) both for vendor and purchaser perspectives. Has represented a number of SAAS and MSP players in a range of sectors.
  • Regulatory/compliance - substantial experience devising, advising upon and implementing a variety of compliance and ethics programmes, including anti-bribery, anti-money laundering. Significant expertise in data protection/privacy including development of global privacy programmes; compliance aspects associated with telecoms, financial services (including FCA Rulebook) and advertising.
  • Commercial contracts – has negotiated a range of heavyweight commercial contracts, from distribution and franchise agreements to joint ventures and business process outsourcing.
  • Corporate - has led on funding rounds, mergers, acquisitions and divestments and has drafted and negotiated a broad range of corporate documents. Provides advice to start and scale ups on corporate issues and maximising shareholder value.
  • International trade – substantial cross border experience having negotiated deals in a variety of sectors in Asia, Africa, US as well as a number of European countries.
  • Media/sponsorship/advertising – niche advertising experience. Formerly represented the Mobile Marketing Association on the committee of Advertising Practice. Advised upon sponsorship of WRU, Rugby World Cup, Premiership Rugby, Pro 14 and Premiership clubs, Glastonbury, BAFTAs, Prize for Fiction.

Recent Activity

  • Series A fundraising preparation
  • Providing regulatory advice to a crowdfunding platform
  • E money registration
  • Revamping contracts for an MSP
  • Devising and implementing a compliance programme
  • Drafting and negotiating Authorised Representative regime
  • International distribution agreement
  • Negotiating a large IT outsourcing agreement for a national retailer
  • Devising a commercial and contractual model for SAAS provider
  • Advising on data privacy issues for an investment bank



Karl is technically astute, with a real commercial vision of the interplay between customer interest, commercial sensibility, and negotiating legal and IP rights. He is personable and savvy. His good sense of humour, easy manner and sharp awareness are all positives.




Specialisms

Fintech, Technology, Media and Telecoms, Financial Services

Qualifications

  • Solicitor



Career

  • Head of Legal, Indigo Group
  • Head of Legal, Credas
  • Head of Fintech, Blake Morgan
  • Global General Counsel, MicroEnsure
  • Corporate Counsel/Regional Manager, Atradius
  • Senior Legal Counsel, Orange (EE)

Awards

  • Legal 500 Next Generation Partner


Karl says...

I am passionate about client service, having been both a provider and recipient of legal services. My focus is on building relationships as a trusted advisor and providing clear, accessible business focused commercial advice to clients.