About Me

I am the International Head of Venture Capital at Bird & Bird, focusing on domestic and international corporate transactions for emerging and high-growth companies and the investors in and lenders to those companies.

My practice focuses on transactions relating to companies in business sectors where technology plays a key role and involves venture capital financings, joint ventures and mergers and acquisitions. My clients include a variety of national and international public and private companies engaged in a wide range of technology sectors including automotive, software, semi-conductors, internet, mobile and telecommunications, cleantech and life sciences.

My many years of experience, at all stages of the financing life cycle of emerging and high growth companies, have allowed me to specialise in not only equity, but also debt transactions for venture backed companies (on both the investor/lender side and also on the company/borrower side). I am recognised as one of the leading practitioners in the venture/growth debt arena in Europe and represent some of the some of the largest VC institutions and companies in Europe and Asia, including Kreos Capital, Silicon Valley Bank, Columbia Lake Partners, Horizons Ventures, Speedcast, Made.com, Immersive Labs, Apollo Endosurgery, CensorNet and Accsys Technologies.

You'll find me in the trusted international directories, as a top ranked lawyer in venture capital and with a regular listing in The Legal 500 UK since 2006. I was also ranked for Private Equity: Venture Capital Investment in Chambers and Partners UK in 2009.


  • Cardiff University, Bsc Econ, Accountancy and Law
  • University of Westminster, Diploma in Law
  • College of Law, Law Society Finals
  • Corporate Finance Qualification, ICAEW


  • Law Society of England & Wales in 1995
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'Struan Penwarden is commercially astute and very well versed in the venture market and is able to deal with all the various nuances that come up along the way.'

Legal 500 UK 2024

Struan Penwarden earns recognition for his "truly supportive and guiding" approach with clients, who turn to him for his expertise in the venture capital field.

Chambers UK 2018

Struan Penwarden has notable skills in the cleantech, life sciences, telecoms and software sectors.

Chambers UK 2018

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We've contributed to The Legal 500: Venture Capital Comparative Guide 2024

Apr 16 2024

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Bird & Bird's Venture Capital team advises Horizons Ventures on its investment in Owlstone Medical

Sep 08 2021

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Trends & Risk in M&A Transactions

Sep 23 2018

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News & Deals

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Bird & Bird advises GetHarley on its $52m Series B financing round

Jul 24 2023

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Bird & Bird advises CommerceIQ on its acquisition of e.fundamentals

Jul 26 2022

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Bird & Bird advises Kreos Capital on its participation in HungryPanda's $130+ million Series D equity and debt funding round

Feb 02 2022

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Bird & Bird launches twoVenture, an online platform for the UK high growth community

Apr 02 2019

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