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From SMP to YPOG: SMP partners found new law firm and expand partner base

Berlin/Hamburg/Cologne – SMP partners found a new law firm under the name YPOG. The name, in conjunction with the new claim 'Partners of Gamechangers', is intended to put the entire team as well as the clients in the foreground. "With our new external appearance, we can express that we want to use the opportunities of digitalization in the future to expand our range of consulting services beyond the offerings of a classic law and tax consulting firm," says Jörn Wöbke, Co-Managing Partner.

At the same time, YPOG is expanding its partner base:

Frederik Gärtner is appointed Equity Partner

With the foundation of YPOG, Frederik Gärtner becomes Equity Partner. Gärtner joined the SMP transaction team at the Berlin office in September 2018 as an Associated Partner. He has diverse experience on both the law firm and corporate side, as well as being a co-founder of the Legal Tech company CONNY (a.o. Prior to that, he was in-house counsel at Berlin-based FinTech Raisin. He started his legal career at Hengeler Mueller. During his time as Associated Partner at SMP since 2018, he was involved in significant advisory mandates such as the sale of Data Artisans to Alibaba, the exit of Allcyte to Exscientia, as well as advising FinTech unicorn Trade Republic, among others. "As former in-house counsel as well as founder, Frederik has an excellent understanding of our clients' needs," said YPOG partner Benjamin Ullrich. "With his expertise in venture capital, M&A, FinTech and corporate law, he has already been a great asset to us over the past three years. Frederik's combination of entrepreneurial experience, specific industry knowledge and legal skills is likely to be unique," adds YPOG partner Tim Schlösser.

Matthias Kresser appointed Associated Partner

Matthias Kresser is appointed Associated Partner at YPOG. Since joining SMP in 2020, he has advised investors, startups and other companies on venture capital transactions (with a focus on venture debt), other equity and debt financings, M&A transactions and general corporate law matters. At YPOG, Matthias Kresser is establishing a Banking & Finance practice group which – in line with YPOG's profile – will have a focus on venture debt financings, other loans for startups, scaleups and growups as well as credit lines for venture capital funds (so-called capital call facilities). Matthias Kresser studied law in Mannheim and at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). During his time at SMP, he advised, among others, IDnow on the acquisition of Wirecard Communication Services out of insolvency, Magazino, Quantum-Systems, SellerX and Next Gen Foods on closing venture debt financings, various VC funds on financing rounds, as well as the shareholders of sofatutor on the sale to Emeram Partners. Until 2020, Kresser was a Principal Associate at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in Hamburg. From this time, he has many years of experience in advising investors and companies in crisis situations and insolvencies. Among others, Kresser advised the Air Berlin Group in the run-up to insolvency and on the filing for insolvency, the BARTEC Group on its financial restructuring, Hamburg Commercial Bank AG on a liability management exercise in connection with hybrid capital instruments issued by it, and OSRAM Licht AG on the sale of its Siteco lighting business.


About us

YPOG is a law firm specialized in tax and business law, active in the core fields of Funds, Tax, Banking + Finance, and Transactions. The team at YPOG represents a broad client base, which ranges from emerging technology companies and family-run SMEs to large corporations, as well as private equity, and venture capital funds. YPOG is one of the leading advisors for venture capital, private equity, and fund structuring in Germany. The firm and its partners have been recognized nationally and internationally by JUVE, Best Lawyers, Legal 500, Focus, Chambers and Partners as well as Leaders League. Today, YPOG has more than 120 experienced lawyers and tax specialists and a notary, in three offices, located in Berlin, Hamburg, and Cologne.