In order to develop, commercialize and capitalize your startup, there are a number of legal factors and issues related to funding, compliance, employees, owner structure and IP rights that you should consider.

An idea – and a great one at that – could be an opening in the market, an unseen potential or a specialized need. These ideas are what startups and established businesses are built on.

In order to develop, commercialize and capitalize your idea into a startup, it is vital that you have the right team, that the team is "on the same page", that you have considered how to protect your idea, product, or trade secret and other major factors, where the funding should come from and on which conditions.

Many legal issues arising from managing and running a business can be met at an early stage if these are thought in at the beginning. Prioritizing legal counsel early may also be vital to your business in the long run.

In our experience, there are a number of different issues that any company, and in particular startups, should focus on.

Shareholders' agreement

As the company develops, so do the founders. Some may decide to leave and others may join at a later stage. It is also important to match one's expectations to workload and tasks. Therefore, it is vital that there is a shareholders' agreement in place at an early stage, which regulates the relationship between the co-owners.


Intellectual Property Rights, such as patents, trademarks, copyrights and goodwill, are all that of a company that are worth a lot but are hard to touch and feel. Protecting and enforcing intellectual property rights may be paramount if the business is built on an invention, and choosing the right trademark strategy will give the business the brand recognition that is needed.


A big challenge for many startups is funding the business. Often, investment comes from public innovation centers, venture funds and participation in accelerator programmes, which may be one of many funding opportunities.


The team is one of the most essential conditions for a startup to be successful, and is central for external investors' likelihood of investing in a particular startup. It is therefore important to ascertain that the relevant contracts between the business and its employees are in place. These may take a number of different forms – a business may decide to hire a freelancer, only hiring on limited contracts or that salary will be in the form of equity.


In many businesses, 20 % of the customers make up 80 % of the turnaround. For startups, this equation may be even more outspoken, which emphasizes the importance of contracts and terms and conditions being in place.


In collaboration with Symbion, Horten has launched a collaborative laboratory programme in Copenhagen. In the Horten CoLab, specifically selected startups are set up. These startups base their business on the newest technology, including blockchain or VR.

The startups in the Horten CoLab will for a period of 6 months have the unique oppor-tunity for peer-to-peer legal and commercial collaboration. Together with the companies, Horten's legal counsels will address the legal and commercial challenges that they may face. Our primary goal is that the selected startups via Horten CoLab will experience growth through the close collaboration, legal insight and a practical approach.

Horten CoLab has been launched as part of Horten's strategical goal to advise tech startups and to be frontrunner in the consulting industry within that field.


Unique cooperation between Horten and Symbion

5 February 2018

Horten has entered into unique cooperation with Symbion and Accelerace where we will make a team of lawyers available for start-up businesses at the shared office facilities Horten CoLab.

Ten things to remember when drafting contracts

29 January 2018

A contract is typically concluded for a specific purpose, and thus the parties often forget to regulate other central issues which can subsequently turn out problematic. We take you throigh ten steps that you should always consider when drafting contracts.

Incentive payments for employees

29 January 2018

When you are about to start your own business, it can be difficult to offer a salary that attracts the most skilled employees. Another way to attract employees can be through incentive payment. We have listed the different types of incentive payments.

Nine things to be aware of when employing staff

29 January 2018

We go through a number of focus areas which are useful to know when you are starting up a new business and are considering employing staff.

Green Tech Challenge 2017

27 September 2017

Horten supports the Green Tech Challenge with a team of advisors and a financial contribution. The Green Tech Challenge supports a number of selected Nordic tech companies with a strong sustainable agenda to optimise their businesses.

European ip rights in Great Britain after Brexit

19 September 2017

Great Britain's exit from the EU will create uncertainty for both British and EU27 companies in relation to the extent and protection of intellectual property rights in Great Britain. It is therefore of great interest and importance to clarify the consequences of Great Britain’s exit and how to handle them.

Change in the regulation of investment advisors

12 June 2017

With a new act, the regulation of investment advisors will be transferred from the Financial Business Act to the Act on financial advisors and mortgage credit intermediaries. As the change introduces restrictions as to which financial instruments investment advisors must advise on, investment advisors may now also receive and transmit orders from investors.