Our team is unlike any other. We are a boutique firm of legal professionals that want to do more for our clients. Our success is measured by the value we bring to our clients. We use our legal expertise to establish ourselves as trusted advisors, ready to answer questions, provide guidance, and protect client interests.

RYAN WERTMAN ESQ
ryan@growthcounsel.com
LinkedIn Profile

Ryan represents startups, emerging growth, and mid-market companies as their general counsel and helps to execute strategic transactions during the entirety of their life cycles.

He believes deeply in giving counsel that balances both the legal and business considerations of the matter at hand, recognizing that his clients rely on him to inform their business decisions in the real world.

Prior to co-founding GrowthCounsel, Ryan founded Wertman Law (2010) and started his career in the M& A department of an Am Law 100 law firm based in Philadelphia (2007-2010).  Ryan also served as general counsel to Skipta LLC (2011-2017), a tech startup in the social networking space, representing the company through several rounds of financing and a successful exit to a publicly-traded company.

Ryan is also a proud member of the Entrepreneurs’ Organization.

Practice Areas

  • General Counsel Services
  • Legal Operations (Process Implementation + Day-to-Day Commercial Support)
  • Corporate Formations | Structure | Governance
  • Financing Transactions + M&A
  • Intellectual Property Guidance + Support

Education

  • Juris Doctor, William & Mary Law School (America Reads Tutor, Softball Dynamo)
  • Bachelor of Arts, William & Mary (Dean’s List, Full Athletic Scholarship)

GEOFF SCHWARTZ ESQ
geoff@growthcounsel.com
LinkedIn Profile

Geoff has extensive experience working with companies at all stages, from pre-revenue startups to high-growth technology companies. His clients regularly turn to him for advice regarding, among other things, equity and debt financings, joint ventures, organizational and founder matters, commercial contracts, employee matters, mergers and acquisitions, and intellectual property issues.

Prior to co-founding GrowthCounsel, Geoff spent ten years in the corporate and securities departments of two Am Law 100 law firms. Geoff was one of the leaders of his prior firm’s emerging company practice group, spearheading its outreach to the greater Philadelphia startup and tech communities.

Practice Areas

  • General Counsel Services
  • Legal Operations (Process Implementation + Day-to-Day Commercial Support)
  • Corporate Formations | Structure | Governance
  • Financing Transactions + M&A
  • Intellectual Property Guidance + Support

Education

  • Juris Doctor, University of Pennsylvania Carey School of Law
  • Bachelor of Arts, Brown University

TED O’CONNOR ESQ
ted@growthcounsel.com
LinkedIn Profile

Ted brings broad and deep in-house and transactional experience to GrowthCounsel, having split his time between a Philadelphia-based AMLaw100 law firm and cutting-edge data/marketing services companies. Ted’s focus is serving as outside general counsel to mid-market and emerging companies, as well as guiding his clients through M&A transactions. Ted serves as a lawyer, advisor, and de facto member of the management team to his clients and enjoys adding value well beyond the typical lawyer-client relationship. Ted is also a Certified Information Privacy Professional and frequently advises clients on privacy and information security issues.

Prior to joining GrowthCounsel, Ted spent over seven years as in-house counsel for private equity-backed marketing services companies. Ted served as Associate General Counsel and Senior Vice President of Business Affairs and Privacy at global marketing network Engine Group, as well as General Counsel and Secretary of Engine’s global market research firm ORC International, where he advised teams across the US, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific region. His extensive in-house experience makes him exceptionally qualified to assist his clients with growing and protecting their businesses.

Ted lives in the Chestnut Hill neighborhood of Philadelphia with his wonderful wife and two teenagers. Like Benjamin Franklin, Ted moved from Boston to Philadelphia as a young man, and, while usually displaying great taste, he remains a die-hard Bruins, Celtics, Patriots, and Red Sox supporter.

Practice Areas

  • General Counsel Services (including Process Implementation + Day-to-Day Commercial and HR Support)
  • Corporate Formations | Structure | Governance
  • Mergers and Acquisitions
  • Real Estate
  • Privacy

Education

  • Juris Doctor, Duke University School of Law
  • Bachelor of Arts (History), University of Pennsylvania

Certifications

  • Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/US)

KIMON HATZA ESQ
kimon@growthcounsel.com
LinkedIn Profile

Kimon has more than 25 years of experience representing clients in a broad array of commercial and transactional matters.

His combination of legal and business acumen has established Kimon as a trusted advisor to technology companies (including software, Internet services, and e-commerce providers), life sciences companies, health care providers, manufacturers, private equity and venture capital firms, commercial lenders, professional services firms, clean energy companies, consultants (business, technology, marketing), media production companies, fashion designers, business executives, retail businesses, nonprofits, title companies, and others.

Kimon joined GrowthCounsel from MillCrest Law LLP, where in addition to his practice he served as the firm’s managing partner. Previously, he was a partner at Blank Rome LLP in its Mergers and Acquisitions and Private Equity Practice Group. Prior to joining Blank Rome, he served as Chairman of the Corporate Law and Health Care Transactions practices at De Cotiis, FitzPatrick & Gluck, and as the Corporate and Health Care Transactions lead in Cohen Shapiro LLP’s New Jersey office.

In his spare time, Kimon is a host of Money Matters TV, a long-running financial news program. His show discusses business and legal issues affecting the technology, life sciences, and health care industries, and features interviews with industry leaders in the greater Philadelphia area. He is a self-described coffee lover, political junkie and grill master. In addition, Kimon is an ardent fan of Philly’s professional sports teams (and he Trusts the Process).

Practice Areas

  • General Counsel Services
  • Legal Operations (Process Implementation + Day-to-Day Commercial Support)
  • Corporate Formations | Structure | Governance
  • Financing Transactions | M&A
  • Complex Contract Negotiations + Preparation
  • Commercial Lending Transactions
  • Private Equity | Venture Capital Transactions

Education

  • Juris Doctor, Temple University Beasley School of Law
  • Bachelor of Arts (Political Science), The Pennsylvania State University (with High Distinction)

ESUGA ABAYA ESQ
esuga@growthcounsel.com
LinkedIn Profile

Esuga is a corporate attorney with experience representing a wide range of clients, from startups and early-stage enterprises to Fortune 500 companies. His practice includes advising clients on a variety of corporate and commercial matters. His experience spans numerous industries, including software, technology, life sciences, insurance, and financial services.

More than just an attorney, Esuga prides himself on being a trusted advisor to his clients, employing a holistic approach to the practice of law that requires an understanding of the business issues and goals that drive legal decision-making.

Before joining GrowthCounsel, Esuga worked in the corporate department of DLA Piper, one of the largest law firms in the world.

Esuga lives in Philadelphia with his wife and young son. He is a huge fan of music (of all types) and loves composing and listening to avant-garde music. He also enjoys the fine arts, traveling, and spending time with family and friends.

Practice Areas

  • Investment Financings (Seed, Venture, Debt)
  • Mergers and Acquisitions
  • Commercial Contract Drafting and Negotiation
  • General Counsel Services
  • Legal Operations (Process Implementation + Day-to-Day Commerical Support)
  • Corporate Formations | Structure | Governance

Education

  • Juris Doctor, Villanova University (Order of the Coif, Law Review)
  • Master of Business Administration, University of Findlay
  • Bachelor of Arts, Bluffton University