Angel investor meets first-time entrepreneur. The young, rising star of tomorrow’s startup scene wants to close the funding round as soon as possible. But here’s a problem: he or she can’t afford legal fees or lack legal knowledge to successfully construct the documents required.
Usually, the angel investor might have connections or the money for the entrepreneur to utilise with regards to legal advice, but what happens when they don’t?
Entrepreneurs usually try to copy templates off the Internet. However, most legal documents available online are not localised to the Singapore context. Due to issues created by the differences between the jurisdiction and legal structure between the US and Singapore, both investors and startups might spend even more money on court cases, when the process could have been much simpler.
That was why Bernard Leong, an experienced early stage investor and entrepreneur, and Huifen Zheng, a corporate counsel, started their new project – creating legal templates for startups in Singapore.
Leong, who sold his media company, SGEntrepreneur, to Tech in Asia earlier this year, is also an entrepreneur in residence for INSEAD Business School. Zheng, on the other hand, has been a technology and research and development (R&D) corporate counsel for several years, after specialising in technology and innovation. According to the press release, Juanita Sabapathy from Kolibri also contributed to the share purchase template.
The open-source project’s aim, according to the release, is to facilitate angel funding in Singapore for both startups and angel investors. Currently, two sets of documents are available for download or perusal. The two are:
1. Convertible Loan: a term sheet (for convertible loans), with a convertible loan investment agreement;
2. Share Purchase and Shareholders’ agreement: a share purchase agreement, an accompanying resolution for the company to issue new shares, and a shareholders’ agreement.
The documents are still in its first version. Leong and Zheng said that they will update the templates regularly and provide more in-depth details on the structure as they go on.
Disclaimer: The templates are free for use, however the authors cannot be responsible for the consequences of use. Startups and investors alike should read and understand the templates and determine the suitability for their particular situation. If in doubt, you should consult professional advisors. The authors welcome questions and comments to improve the templates but “they” are not able to consult for free as “they” have “their” day jobs.