James Shaw


James is a partner in the corporate team and a leading transactional venture capital lawyer, advising entrepreneurs, companies and investors through the funding life-cycle.

James is a partner in the corporate team and a leading transactional venture capital lawyer, advising entrepreneurs, companies and investors through the funding life-cycle.

He was the co-founder of tech law firm JAG Shaw Baker which merged with Withers to create a new legal offering, Withers tech, in 2018.

James has two decades of experience helping entrepreneurs, high-growth technology based companies and investors navigate their way through multiple rounds of financing, growth, scale-up and exit/liquidity events. He’s ranked as a recommended lawyer for Venture Capital in the 2017 edition of the Legal 500.

James is considered to be one of the leading University spin-out lawyers for life sciences companies and he actively advises on spin-out activity from several of the leading Universities in the UK and Scotland including Oxford and Cambridge University. James works as a mentor and speaker with the Oxford Foundry, part of Oxford University’s incubator initiative for past and present students.

As a close adviser to many companies and investors, James also acts as Outside General Counsel to a number of innovative science-based companies and is an adviser to Parkinson’s UK Biotech Business Group.

And through the combination of innovation and other practice areas, James is helping to drive firm-wide Global initiatives to address the rapidly changing landscape of more traditional sectors such Real Estate, Hospitality, Sports and Fashion and Luxury Brands.

James is a graduate of both St Andrews University (BSc Hons) and Edinburgh University (LLB), and is passionate about innovation and the environment. As a Scottish qualified lawyer, James also holds a committee position on the Society of Scottish Lawyers in London and is a Writer to Her Majesty’s Signet.

Track record





Representing Stride.VC and a series of other investors on the multiple rounds of financing of Cazoo Ltd, the disruptive start-up to the second hand car market in the UK

Representing Sweet Capital (the private investment fund of the Founders of King.com) – across multiple consumer mobile disruptive investments on a global basis

Representing a Fintech disrupter on its major European Growth Strategy

The Law Society of Scotland

Withers talks tech - podcasts

Writer to Her Majesty’s Signet and Council Member of the WS Society

A Q & A with James Shaw, Biotech and Money, Drugs & Dealers, May 2016

Society of Scottish Lawyers in London, committee member (President 2017-2020)

Early Stage Funding, Startup and SME club, 3/8/2018

Funding AI, VR And AR Startups In MedTech For Growth, February 2018 (panel member)

What Does The Future Hold For Digital Health? Biotechs and the City, September 2017 (panel member)


I'm passionate about helping entrepreneurs and investors build impactful businesses through innovation.

Since Marine Biology is my passion, why did I become a lawyer? The reason is simple; by complete accident! However, it soon became apparent that my scientific passions combined with legal skills in the start-up sector were a powerful combination and I was actually able to make a huge difference.

Whether it’s helping life sciences and biotech spinouts become companies that can develop novel therapies or working with startups to help them bring new technologies like virtual reality, augmented reality and artificial intelligence, to market, I get to help entrepreneurs and investors across multiple sectors make a real difference.



  • English
  • French