Emerging Growth

LEADERSHIP: Thomas P. Dwyer and Christopher S. Miller

Pepper Hamilton's Program for Startup and Early-Stage Entrepreneurial Development

Pepper SEED logo image

You’re not Apple or Genzyme. Yet. We understand that you’re a startup, or an early-stage company still in its  formative years. But we don’t just understand where you are; we can help you get anywhere you want to be.

From the dorm room to the boardroom. From your garage to your IPO.

Whatever your path, as you blaze it, we’re at your side. Because we see as much potential as you do.

We’ve worked with hundreds of entrepreneurs. Some of us were once entrepreneurs ourselves. That’s how we know you need practical, responsive, and cost-effective advice, at every stage of your lifecycle. As you grow and evolve. And (why not?) change the world.

If you’re a startup or an early-stage company with:

  • a sound business plan
  • a solid technology or scientific foundation, and
  • quality management,

talk with us. We’re your innovative, affordable solution.

We have the experience and depth in areas critical to emerging growth businesses, such as:

  • business formation
  • venture capital, private equity and alternative funding
  • intellectual property
  • technology, outsourcing and distribution transactions
  • employee benefits
  • privacy and data security.

Pepper SEED’s holistic approach combines the resources of an experienced, multi-disciplinary team into an affordable package for startups and early-stage companies. The unique, deeply discounted program includes a nominal entry fee, a full suite of essential basic legal documents, effective legal counseling, and, for no additional charge, mentoring in areas such as board development and management, business plan review, and investor relations. And, leveraging our extensive array of relationships, we can introduce you to angel groups, seed funds and venture capital funds, and help tell your story to the world.

Pepper SEED’s holistic approach affordably packages the resources of an experienced, multi-disciplinary team into an alternative fee structure that includes essential legal documents and legal counseling. An initial $2,500 fee is applied as a retainer against initial counseling.


We provide the following basic documentation free of additional charge:

  • incorporation or LLC formation documents
  • founders’ shareholders agreement or operating agreement stock restriction agreement (with vesting provisions)
  • 83(b) election form and instructions form of employee non-disclosure agreement
  • form of consulting agreement
  • form of third-party non-disclosure agreement
  • form of equity incentive plan and agreements.

Customizing these documents and initial counseling are 50 percent off our standard rates against the retainer.


Phase I

Until the earlier of the company’s first significant financing, significant 12 months of revenue, or first 18 months of our engagement, we provide the following services at a 20% discount to our standard rates:

  • corporate counseling
  • contract preparation and review
  • copyright, trademark and patent counseling and prosecution
  • employment and benefits counseling.

All other services, including litigation, are 10% off our standard rates. If approved, we will defer payment of fees for up to $25,000. (If the company is sold before the deferral period ends, deferred fees will become due.)

Phase II

After your first significant financing, significant 12 months of revenue, or the first 18 months of our engagement, our services will be at a discount to our standard rates, as agreed to and reviewed annually.

Phase II of the program is open to companies that meet the criteria, even if they have already received significant financing.

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