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Dr. Stephan Bank

Stephan advises asset managers, institutional investors and investment funds on all matters relating to collective investment schemes, including fund formation and ongoing operational matters, co-investments, carried interest arrangements and internal reorganizations. In addition, Stephan advises sponsors and investors on secondary transactions, including recapitalizations and restructurings.

As a second focus, Stephan's practice includes venture capital and M&A transactions as well as general corporate law. In particular, Stephan advises and represents domestic and foreign institutional and strategic investors and corporations on all matters related to financing rounds, corporate acquisitions, joint ventures, investments in portfolio companies and exit transactions.

The JUVE Handbook of German Commercial Law Firms lists Stephan as a "frequently recommended lawyer" for venture capital, and Germany's leading economic magazine WirtschaftsWoche ranks Stephan as a top lawyer for M&A. Also, Stephan has been recognized by Chambers & Partners as a leading advisor for venture capital. In addition, the Legal 500 Germany lists Stephan as a key lawyer for investment funds and for venture capital, and Best Lawyers® recognizes Stephan as one of the top lawyers in Germany for corporate law, mergers and acquisitions law, private funds and venture capital law. Leaders League lists Stephan in the category “highly recommended” for fund structuring.

Education and Career

Stephan studied law in Cologne and at University College London. Before co-founding YPOG (in 2021) and SMP (in 2017), he was Associated Partner at Flick Gocke Schaumburg. Prior thereto, Stephan was a Senior Associate for several years in the M&A and corporate team of Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton at the firm’s Cologne, Frankfurt and New York offices.

Stephan is a co-editor of and contributor to the practitioners’ handbook “Venture Capital Agreements in Germany” and frequently publishes on matters related to venture capital, M&A and general corporate law. 


Stephan’s recent work highlights include advising:

  • HV Capital on the formation of the ninth generation of its venture and growth fund
  • The founders of AMANA Consulting GmbH on the Exit to LucaNet AG
  • MILES Mobility on the acquisition of Volkswagen AG's WeShare
  • Headline on the formation of all of its European horizontal venture capital fund generations, on the formation of various growth funds, focus funds and follow-on funds, on fund secondary transactions as well as on numerous financing rounds in Germany and Europe
  • Cherry Ventures on the formation of all of its horizontal venture capital fund generations as well as on the formation of various growth funds, focus funds, follow-on funds and SPVs
  • Armira on the acquisition of an indirect stake in Sartorius AG
  • Speedinvest on the formation of its third and fourth horizontal venture capital fund generation and the structuring of various focus and successor funds
  • Allianz X on its investment in heycar and heycar’s corporate governance
  • Allianz/AV8 Ventures on the formation of two captive funds with Allianz SE as sole investor
  • Leaps by Bayer on its investment in Ada Health
  • 468 Capital on the formation of their first and second venture capital fund generation and the structuring of various focus and special purpose funds
  • BlueYard/BY Capital on the formation of its first, second and third generation of venture capital funds and fund restructurings as well as on several financing rounds, including Pitch and deepstream hub
  • KKA Partners on the formation of its first and second generation of private equity funds
  • Vorwerk Ventures on the formation of its third and fourth venture capital fund generation
  • Cooperativa/PropTech1Ventures on the formation of the first and second generations of its German PropTech venture capital fund
  • Wallaby, Inc. on the acquisition of Phenox group
  • Great Hill Partners on the acquisition of Echobot and Leadfeeder
  • Revent Capital on the formation of a venture capital fund with an impact focus
  • ELEMENT Insurance AG on the restructuring of an employee incentive program
  • Brookfield on the restructuring of the employee incentive program at Thermondo GmbH
  • Baloise on several venture capital investments
  • Amplifier on several venture capital investments
  • Exporo on all financing rounds and on its joint venture with Zinsland
  • The founders and investors of Data Artisans on the sale of the company to Alibaba
  • Greycroft on various financing rounds, including Blinks Labs, Viorama and Deposit Solutions
  • Coya on all of its financing rounds and all corporate law issues
  • Rasa on its Series A financing round and all corporate law issues


  • German qualified attorney (Rechtsanwalt)
  • Ph.D. in law (Dr. iur.) (Cologne University)
  • LL.M. (University College London)


  • German
  • English
  • Attribution of Knowledge and Contract Drafting
    in: Liability, Duty to Inform, Attribution of Knowledge and Conduct in M&A Transactions – results of the 4th Leipzig Conference on Mergers & Acquisitions in 2018 from May 19th to 20th, C.H. Beck, 2020, 93 – 124 (in German)
  • Information Asymmetry – Sense and Nonsense of Guarantees, Milestones and MAC Provisions in VC Investment Agreements
    in: Venture Capital, Investment Agreements and related Legal Issues – results of the 3rd Leipzig Conference on Mergers & Acquisitions in 2017 from May 19th to 20th, C.H. Beck, 2018, 117 – 142 (in German)
  • Venture Capital Agreements in Germany
    C.H. Beck, 2017 (together with Peter Möllmann)
  • Confidentiality Obligations of Board Members in Case of Multiple Board Membership
    NZG 2013, 801-806 - (in German)
  • The Prohibition on Insider Trading in M&A Transactions
    NZG 2012, 1337-1342 - (in German)
  • Legal Issues Concerning the Cooperation of Insurance Companies
    VersR 2012, 270-278 (together with Jürgen Sieger) - (in German)
  • Control Mechanisms for Founders of Foundations under German Civil Law
    NZG 2010, 641-646 (together with Jürgen Sieger) - (in German)
  • The UK LLP – An Attractive Business Entity for German Law Firms?
    BB-Spezial 2010, 4 et seq. - (in German)
  • The LLP in Practice
    C.H. Beck, 2008 (together with Helder Schnittker) - (in German)
  • The British Limited Liability Partnership: An Attractive Business Entity for Professionals?
    Duncker & Humblot, 2007 - (in German)
  • Limits of Post-Contractual Non-Compete Undertakings
    LMK 2005, 163409 (together with Martin Henssler) - (in German)
  • Corporate Liability under the German Federal Soil Protection Act
    DB 1999, 417-420 (together with Wolfgang Schmitz-Rode) - (in German)
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