It’s hard to believe that it has been five months since our Winter update. The days before Christmas were certainly dark in many different ways but I am now very hopeful that, as spring and the warmer weather is upon us and with a successful vaccine programme, life should return to relative normality.
I was particularly excited about the re-opening of hospitality on Monday 17 May. I have missed meeting family, friends, colleagues and clients. It is interesting to see how, in recent years, the hospitality sector has embraced new technology and has been forced to innovate. We’re fortunate to have played a part in that and have developed a leading reputation in acting for clients in the emerging food technology sector. It will be interesting to see which areas of the sector benefit most from the return to the new normal. You can read more about our recent experience in this exciting area at the end of this update.
On a similar theme, one recent highlight of our work was assisting Pilot Lite Capital with all aspects of the launch of the Mindful Snacker business. You can find out more about Mindful Snacker’s delicious snacks and the work we did to support them later too.
To celebrate the re-opening of the hospitality sector, we are pleased to support start-up Sovereign Hart Games by sending out copies of their fabulous new game “Recipe for Disaster – A Card Game of Culinary Chaos”. If you are staying in, looking for something to pass the time and you’d like a copy from us, I’ve set out how to get one below.
Finally, Victoria Theaker and Amanda Sermon in our team have been keeping apprised of the latest developments in data protection, commercial and corporate law relevant to every area of the technology and data industries. I am keen to share their news and insights and, with particular regard to Victoria’s update on handling a data breach, to let you know that the faster we can get involved to assist in handling a breach, the easier it is to get a better result and minimise the commercial and regulatory consequences. On a different note, if you are trading online, Amanda’s summary of a recent court decision on exclusion clauses is well worth a read too.
I look forward to catching up over the Spring and Summer.
All the very best,
Deal UpdateMindful Snacker
We were pleased to have advised Pilot Lite Capital (the UK investment arm of the Pilot Lite Group) on the launch of their new Mindful Snacker business. The creation of Mindful Snacker (the better-for-you snack business) is the result of the acquisition of several innovative technologies and investment by Pilot Lite Capital. Mindful Snacker launched a first UK product in April 2021, a sliced potato crisp with 50 percent less fat and lower salt content than other leading crisps produced, with a ground-breaking new cooking process. We were particularly pleased with Simon Howarth, Pilot Lite Group’s chief investment officer, comments about our team. He said,
“We were absolutely delighted with the way that they got up to speed quickly on the corporate and commercial aspects of the launch. We wouldn’t hesitate to work with them again on another one of our investment projects.”
We have extensive experience in acting on investments into early stage companies whether it be for family offices, traditional or venture capital funds or other private equity vehicles.
In Green v Petfre (Gibraltar) Ltd (t/a Betfred)  EWHC 842 (QB) (7 April 2021) the courts have recently given some useful clarity in relation to reliance on exclusion and limitation of liability clauses in an online environment.
Amanda Sermon, head of our corporate finance team, reviewing the judgment of the court notes that, whilst the case in question was a consumer contract, it is a salutary reminder in all contractual relationships (including B2B) of the need for clear, logical and concise drafting, signposting of onerous clauses (such as exclusion and limitation of liability clauses) and, where standard terms are incorporated into the contract, ensuring that the terms are easily available and updates are flagged to the parties.
Our view is that the Betfred judgment is a useful reminder that onerous terms (such as exclusion and limitation of liability clauses) should be clearly and specifically signposted to the contracting party; and all terms and conditions need to be clearly, logically, concisely and unambiguously drafter to ensure that not only the contracting parties are able to understand them easily but also they cover the situation in question.
Almost every day we assist clients with ensuring that their standard terms and conditions offer them the protection they require. Please contact us if you need assistance in drafting your terms and conditions or feel your terms and conditions would benefit from a review.
Sovereign Hart Games is a family run company that is developing both desktop and digital games. Their first game, “Recipe for Disaster – A Card Game of Culinary Chaos” was launched after a successful kick starter campaign. A number of the team have played the game with their children and we’ve all enjoyed it immensely.
Sovereign Hart Games is led by Glen Drury, a tech veteran, and his son, Duncan. We worked with Glen in his previous roles at Blippar and Quandoo and we were very pleased to have the opportunity to support his latest venture. If you’d like a copy of Recipe for Disaster, we have a few remaining. Just drop us an email here with your recommendation for the best place to eat in the UK and your reasons why.
If you are in the gaming industry and are looking for corporate or commercial legal assistance, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Gaming is our guilty pleasure and we’d be delighted to get involved and work with your business.
Before the GDPR, we would assist clients handling a personal data breach about once a quarter. Now we have a request to help at least once a month. It is definitely the case that organisations are far more aware of their legal and regulatory responsibilities under the GDPR in respect of personal data breaches.
However, it is fair to say that many still need our guidance to travel along what is not always an easily navigable path. One not-so-recent example comes to mind where the client’s first response to the breach was to draft a notification to their employee’s trade unions.
We advised them of their legal duties that the regulator and the affected data subjects should be higher up on the notification list!
We have drafted a comprehensive “seven step” guide to handling a personal data breach that systematically sets out the right route to take if a breach occurs. If you have any questions about how to handle a data breach, please don’t hesitate to contact us
It‘s a great time to celebrate the fabulous food technology sector that is growing in the UK and Europe led by some amazing British businesses. We were first asked to act for a new and innovative food delivery service about four years ago when their cyan-coloured, kangaroo-clad bicycle riders were seen around the City. Members of our team even got involved in delivering pizza themselves at an off-site event. We now advise across the entire spectrum of this sector from assisting global fast service restaurant chains on the modernisation of their customer experience technology to the establishment of early-stage dark kitchens, virtual restaurant offerings and local food delivery hardware and software technology providers.