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Isabelle Harris

Isabelle Harris


Personal Profile

Isabelle is an Associate in the Innovation department and a member of the Charities and Social Ventures team.

Isabelle advises charities, social enterprises, B Corps and other purposeful businesses, and traditional and impact investors seeking to create a positive impact. Drawing on her experience in the first part of her career as a Corporate lawyer with a private equity focus, her practice involves supporting clients with:

  • funding impact projects through equity financing and grant funding;
  • designing and implementing new legal and organisational structures, including mergers and structural reorganisations;
  • Charity Commission regulation, governance challenges and constitutional reviews; and
  • establishing collaborations, partnerships and joint ventures, including between charities, social ventures, research institutions, universities and corporates.

Isabelle's work also includes forming, registering and preparing constitutional documents for new charities and purposeful businesses, including social enterprises and CICs. She advises businesses and investors transitioning to B Corp or social enterprise status, including updating constitutional documents to embed purpose as part of this journey.

Isabelle spent six months on secondment to the Wellcome Trust as part of her training contract.

Key Experience

  • Advising one of the largest British healthcare charities on the establishment of, and first investments made from, its innovation impact investment portfolio – including into a cancer diagnostics University spin-out and a cancer AI and medical imaging business.
  • Advising the corporate foundation of a large, international bank on making a number of initial investments as part of its impact investment portfolio – including into a US public benefit corporation founded to build world-class software products for social impact organisations.
  • Advising one of the UK's largest independent life science and medical research charities on the creation of template grant terms and conditions for its rare diseases fund.
  • Advising a global impact investor on certain shareholder matters, including exit processes, in respect of number of their portfolio companies based in Sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Advising a US-based grant-making network on various management challenges arising in one of its portfolio companies, focused on providing access to medical products in the global south.
  • Advising a large US non-profit organisation working with the fashion and textile industry on the creation of a new trust and governance structure for one of its social enterprise investments.
  • Advising on the establishment of a CIC focused on improving access to data and images relating to the climate crisis, and its initial investment from a number of impact investors.
  • Acting on the sale of a climate-tech platform that enables businesses to quickly, easily and cost effectively source impactful energy, to a global energy management specialist. This transaction involved a pre-sale options exercise and liaison with over 30 shareholders, including a number of impact venture funds.
  • Advising on a series A investment by a Lifesciences venture capital investor into a University spin-out focusing on cancer therapeutics.

Career History

Associate, Mishcon de Reya LLP
Associate, Bates Wells
Associate, CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
Trainee Solicitor, CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
BPP Law School, Legal Practice Course and Graduate Diploma in Law
University of Manchester, BA (Hons) in French and Linguistics

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