Global tech law firm Cooley opens Miami Beach office, lured by fast-growing venture hub

By Nancy Dahlberg

The word is out. In the past year, we’ve seen tech-focused recruiting firms and communications agencies expand to Miami, following the migration of founders and funders. Now, here come the lawyers.

Cooley LLP, one of the top law firms for startups and venture capital, announced today it has chosen Miami Beach for its 19th global office. “Miami has quickly become a go-to destination for some of the best and brightest talent in the tech and venture capital community,” said Joe Conroy, Cooley’s chairman and CEO.

Cooley today serves as primary fund counsel to more than 600 investment fund organizations and represents venture funds or corporate investors in over 700 private financings each year. The Palo Alto-based firm also represents issuers and investment banks in over 50 IPOs each year while serving as primary corporate governance and securities counsel to over 240 public companies. 

Its Miami Beach office, located at 350 Lincoln Road in Miami Beach, will support “fast-growing, innovative companies and their investors based in Florida and Latin America to guide them in raising capital, navigating regulatory or compliance challenges, accessing global capital markets or continuing their success as a public company,” the firm said. Indeed, during the pandemic, Miami became a magnet for startups and venture capital firms setting up offices.

In 2021, the Miami metro area jumped onto the VC map, ranking among the top 10 US venture hubs for the first time, and increased funding in 2022, unlike other hubs. While funding has tumbled like the rest of the country so far in 2023, deal counts have held up. From 2021 through through 2023, Dealroom projects the Miami  metro area will rank 9th in the nation for VC investments totalling about $14 billion, and for 2023 alone will rank 5th by number of deals. Their report also found that while Miami is earlier in its development as a tech hub – only year  3 – the ecosystem is growing at a much faster growth rate than its peers.

Derek Colla

To start, Cooley’s Miami office will be made up of a core team of five lawyers relocating from existing Cooley offices and will be led by Derek Colla, a corporate and M&A partner with extensive experience representing emerging companies in the US and Latin America. In addition, lawyers in Cooley’s capital markets, M&A, fund formation and emerging companies practices will be active in the early operations of the office, the firm said.

Cooley already has major tech and venture capital clients based in South Florida and the new office will deepen those relationships, said Colla, in the announcement. “We are also excited to extend our reach within Miami’s incredibly dynamic and increasingly international business community to provide the full capabilities of Cooley’s global platform.”

The firm employs more than 1,300 lawyers across 19 offices in the United States, Asia and Europe.


Nancy Dahlberg