- Ex-Peacock & Co, Cannings Connolly and Colemans ctts Solicitors
Jean-Marc qualified as a solicitor in May 2008, after a very varied training split between city firm Cannings Connolly and regional firm Peacock & Co. Prior to joining Waterfront he had also acted as a consultant for Colemans ctts Solicitors.
Jean-Marc has extensive experience drafting, advising and negotiating on a range of commercial contracts, with particular experience across the IT sector and working on both customer and supplier side. Jean-Marc’s clients span global professional service firms, SME’s and start-ups, including software developers and vendors, IT service providers and app/website providers operating across a variety of industries such as financial, legal, education and retail. He was promoted to partner in 2015.
Jean-Marc is fluent in French.
Why did you decide to join Waterfront?
I love technology and gadgets and it’s great when you get to meet the people behind the tech. Learning about how the idea came about and the process of developing can be fascinating; it doesn’t even have to be about technology I will necessarily use myself. The opportunity to combine my enthusiasm for tech with the law was (and is) for me, the perfect job. Even when I joined back in August 2010, Waterfront was still one the few genuinely tech focused law firms around, and technology law continues to be a main focal point for the firm.
And we get to wear jeans to work.
Why do you like about working for Waterfront?
Someone once told me that in any workplace, you either have to like the people you work with or like the work you do. If you don’t have either, you won’t last long. Thankfully, Waterfront provides both.
Oh, and the jeans thing.
What inspired you to become a solicitor?
“A Few Good Men”. Tom Cruise, “So please, don't tell me what I know, or don't know; [shouting for emphasis] Iknow the LAW !”.
I still haven’t managed to work that into any contract negotiations though.
Why did you choose to specialise in commercial contracts?
I think we’re all aspiring authors at heart. You can’t not enjoy writing when you spend 70% of your day drafting or reading contracts. I’m convinced everyone in the team has one great novel in them, the only problem being we’d spend too much time making sure all definitions are properly defined and not enough time on creating a compelling narrative.
What’s the most common legal mistake businesses make?
Contacting us after the contract has been signed!
If you hadn’t become a solicitor what career would you have liked to pursue?
All I can say is that Roger Federer definitely wouldn’t have 17 grand slam titles to his name if I’d pursued my alternative career.
Whom do you most admire in the world(s) of tech / legal / business?
Gabe Newell co-founded and heads up “Valve”, which is not only one of the most successful and celebrated game developer/publishers in the world, but also revolutionised the flagging PC gaming market through the launch of the “Steam” platform.