Ranked in Band 1 for Fintech in the USA by Chambers

Chambers USA ranks Christopher Austin in Band 1 for Fintech in its 2019 and 2020 report. He has been described as "very solutions-oriented," understanding how to talk to founders and regulators alike. Market sources highlight his broad excellence in the space, with one saying: "Chris does an excellent job ensuring that our various startup matters are handled expeditiously and well, everything from lease negotiation to drafting of terms of service to fund-raising."

Christopher Austin is global co-head of Orrick’s Capital Markets practice as well as global co-chair of Orrick's Blockchain and Cryptocurrency practice. He focuses on capital markets, cryptocurrency, venture capital and corporate law, with extensive experience in public offerings, public and private company governance and securities law compliance.

Chris counsels public and high-growth technology companies on general corporate and transactional matters, including advising on formation, venture financings, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings, corporate governance, and intellectual property issues. He has extensive experience advising both companies and investment banks on capital markets matters, including leading deals involving BAML, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan and Morgan Stanley, in connection with initial public offerings and follow-on offerings of technology and life sciences companies.

With a combination of securities law, fintech and startup experience, Chris has become a recognized leader on cryptocurrency and blockchain matters. Chambers USA ranks him Band 1 for Fintech in the USA and reports: "clients call [...] upon his wealth of experience in public offerings, SAFT issues and token sales. Sources cite his "commercial" and "thorough" approach as a key asset, while also praising his ability to "get things done." Recent experience includes working with companies such as Hedera (Hashgraph), Threefold Foundation and others on issues around token sales, SAFT offerings and securities law compliance.  He leads a multi-disciplinary team of money transmission, derivatives, broker dealer, litigation and compensation and benefits experts to provide holistic advice in a rapidly changing regulatory environment. Notable Fintech companies he works with include Betterment, SoFi, Personal Capital, Debtsy, Credit IQ and Galaxy Digital.

  • Prior to joining Orrick, Chris was a partner at Goodwin Procter and Ropes & Gray.

  • Chris's recent engagements include:

    • Beyond Meat in its initial public offering.
    • Social Finance, Inc., in over $1.4 billion of venture capital financing and multiple secondary tender offers.
    • PagerDuty, Inc. as outside general counsel in its recent venture capital financings and secondary tender offer, as underwriter's counsel in the recent IPO 
    • Pinterest, Inc. in connection with corporate governance and financing matters.
    • SailThru, Inc. as outside general counsel for all corporate matters.
    • Betterment, Inc. in various financings and as outside general counsel.
    • Hungryroot, Inc. in various financings and as outside general counsel.
    • Hedera Hashgraph on over $100 million in SAFT financings in 2018, including the most recent $82.5 million SAFT round. Previously advised on its formation, funding and regulatory matters.
    • Ooma, Inc.,a provider of voice over IP communications solutions, in its initial public offering.
    • Morgan Stanley and Barclays, as underwriters counsel, in the $130 million initial public offering of Rapid7, Inc.  and multiple follow-on offerings
    • Morgan Stanley, BofA Merrill Lynch, J.P. Morgan and Deutsche Bank, as underwriters counsel, in the $230 million initial public offering of OnDeck Capital, Inc., an online alternative finance company for small businesses.
    • Coatue, in its $500 million investment in Liberty Media to support Charter Communications’ acquisition of Time Warner and its $400 million investment in Liberty to purchase FormulaOne.
    • Deutsche Bank Securities, BofA Merrill Lynch, William Blair & Company, JMP Securities, Raymond James & Associates and Needham & Company, as underwriter’s counsel, in the $137.8 million NASDAQ initial public offering and the $121 million follow-on offering of Paylocity, Inc., a provider of cloud-based payroll and human capital management (HCM) software solutions.
    • Goldman, Sachs & Company, Deutsche Bank Securities, Jefferies, Canaccord Genuity, Piper Jaffray and Raymond James, as underwriter’s counsel, in the $130.8 million NASDAQ initial public offering and $109.9 million follow-on offering of Benefitfocus, Inc., a provider of cloud-based benefits software solutions for consumers, employers, insurance carriers, and brokers.
    • Eloqua, Inc., a provider of on-demand revenue performance management software solutions, in its $105.8 million initial public offering on NASDAQ and subsequent sale to Oracle.