Drew Whiting Photo

Drew Whiting

Senior Counsel

Overview

Drew focuses his law practice on corporate and transactional matters affecting emerging companies and their investors. A member of the firm’s Venture Best® group, Drew provides well-honed advice to entrepreneurs, early and growth-stage companies, venture capital investors, closely-held family businesses, investment banks, and private equity firms.

In this capacity, Drew has represented dozens of start-up and high-potential companies throughout their lifecycles – from business formation and structuring to exit transactions. He advises his clients at all stages of funding (friends and family, angel, seed, and institutional venture capital financing). He has proved to be an indispensable resource for many notable venture-backed companies, guiding his clients through financing, employment, advisory, and licensing transactions. Drew started his own career at a kitchen table and went on to found a law firm, giving him first-hand knowledge of the entrepreneurial mindset and drive to succeed. This experience helped him develop his cultivated approach to working with entrepreneurs and investors alike.

Drew also represents angel investors, investment syndicates, and venture capital firms, assisting these clients with the formation of SPVs, investment clubs, and venture capital funds. As an investor himself, Drew brings a valuable perspective to deal diligence and negotiation on behalf of investor clients.

In addition to Drew’s work in the venture capital space, he also serves as corporate counsel to closely-held private businesses, providing counsel regarding employment transactions, vendor and customer agreements, joint venture agreements, license agreements, and business succession planning. He has represented many such companies through complex transactions, including management buyouts, asset sales, business unit divestitures, and acquisitions. Additionally, Drew represents of a number of private equity funds, search funds, and investment banks which regularly engage in the purchase and sale of private businesses.

In 2018, Drew’s venture capital-backed clients raised over $45 million in convertible or preferred equity rounds, his funds and investment syndicate clients collectively raised and deployed over $50 million, and his closely-held business and private equity clients acquired or sold 14 businesses via equity or asset transactions.

Besides his role at Michael Best, Drew is actively involved in two Chicago-based investment organizations, Breakpoint Ventures and The Cultivator, which provide venture capital, expert advice, and organizational support to entrepreneurs and early-stage companies across the nation.

Prior to joining Michael Best, Drew founded his own firm, then went on to lead the Venture practice of another Chicago-based firm.

Honors & Recognitions

  • “Rising Stars,” Illinois Super Lawyers, 2014-2019

Professional Activities

  • General Counsel and Director, The Chicago Leadership Alliance
  • Secretary and Director, Illinois Autonomous Vehicles Association
  • Founding Member, Breakpoint Ventures
  • Founding Member, The Cultivator
  • Member, Illinois Bar Association

Education

Admission

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