Aird & Berlis partners with University of Toronto to offer legal advice to early-stage startups

Toronto, ON – Aird & Berlis LLP (A&B) has become the sponsoring legal partner to the University of Toronto Early-Stage Technology Program (UTEST).

UTEST is a 12-month incubation and acceleration program co-managed by the University of Toronto (U of T) and MaRS Innovation that allows selected U of T-affiliated early-stage startup companies to incorporate, use office space, receive mentorship and access $30,000 in funding, with opportunities for follow-on funding from MaRS Innovation. UTEST was recently named one of Canada’s most promising start-up accelerators in an online series by BetaKit, a digital publication that covers Canadian technology.

“We are thrilled to partner with A&B and leverage their legal expertise for our startups and emerging companies,” said Kurtis Scissions, UTEST co-director. “To date, 17 companies, including Granata Decision Systems, Whirlscape, Crowdmark, eQOL and TrendMD, have successfully graduated from our program. We look forward to adding A&B’s Startups Team of lawyers to our mentorship group for the UTEST program, beginning in 2015.”

A&B’s Startups Team, led by Rebecca Kacaba and Mat Goldstein, offers a range of legal services to new companies in the technology, digital or consumer application spaces. A&B supports startups at every stage of development, from incorporation, incubation and commercialization through to the public offering.

The A&B Startups Team advises on all aspects of capital raising—including seed, angel and venture capital—as well as corporate development, mergers and acquisitions, product and technology licensing, privacy, anti-spam and other commercial considerations. A&B also leverages its broad network of entrepreneurs and funders to make strategic introductions and connections.

“We already have a close relationship with both MaRS Innovation and the University of Toronto Innovations and Partnerships Office,” said Rebecca Kacaba, partner at A&B and leader of the firm’s Startups Team. “We look forward to counselling the successful companies and individuals who graduate from UTEST, and to continue working with UTEST to build a successful growth program for early-stage entrepreneurs.”

About the University of Toronto

The University of Toronto is home to a diverse ecosystem of entrepreneurship supports, including accelerators, programs, courses, classes and co-curricular organizations. Its nine accelerators – all under the umbrella of the Banting & Best Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship – are spread across several disciplines and provide comprehensive resources for entrepreneurial students, faculty and recent graduates. To learn more about entrepreneurship at U of T visit

About Aird & Berlis LLP

Aird & Berlis LLP is a leading Canadian law firm based in Toronto, serving clients across Canada and globally. The firm’s practice encompasses all principal areas of business law, including corporate/commercial, corporate finance, banking, insolvency and restructuring, energy, environmental, infrastructure/P3, technology and intellectual property, litigation, labour and employment, municipal and land use planning, real estate and tax. The firm’s diverse client base ranges from entrepreneurs to multinational corporations.


For more information, please contact:

Karen Oliveira
Communications Specialist, Aird & Berlis LLP

Media Relations
University of Toronto
416 978-0100