Our Fintech Group comprises lawyers specializing in financial services, financial regulation, technology, e-commerce, commercial contracts, data protection, cyber-security and tax. Our cross-departmental approach provides practical and innovative solutions to our clients drawing on multiple perspectives.

Authorisation of electronic money institutions (EMIs) and payment institutions (PIs)

William Fry has acted for 30% of firms which have successfully secured authorisation as an EMI to date in Ireland on their applications. We have unrivalled experience in securing authorisation of EMIs and PIs and registration of AISPs and PISPs in Ireland quickly and efficiently.

Fintech M&A / fundraisings

Members of the team from William Fry's leading M&A practice regularly advise buyers, sellers and targets on mergers and acquisitions transactions and fundraisings involving Fintechs.

Outsourcing and Cloud Services

We have particular strength in advising on and negotiating external and intra-group outsourcing arrangements including cloud services involving Fintechs and technology vendors both from a commercial contracts perspective and from a regulatory perspective. 


Our Fintech Group can assist companies in meeting their IT and cybersecurity regulatory requirements by providing cybersecurity training from a regulatory and operational perspective; providing a 24/7 breach management and incident response service (contact us at;  advising on GDPR aspects of cyber security incidents and mandatory data security breach reporting to regulators; and reviewing or drafting IT security and cybersecurity policies. 

Open Banking

We work with banks, AISPs and PISPs in navigating the regulatory requirements on Open Banking.

Blockchain, distributed ledger technology and cryptocurrency

Our Fintech Group advises governmental authorities and firms on the evolving landscape of regulation of blockchain, distributed ledger technology and cryptocurrencies under Irish law. On the technology side, we advise some of the global leaders in the blockchain space.

Data Protection/GDPR Compliance 

We advise on data protection/GDPR compliance including data protection policies and notices, international data transfers, record retention policies, vendor management, data breaches and regulatory audits/investigations into data protection compliance and data protection enforcement.

Regulatory enforcement

We provides advice and assistance to regulated Fintechs on regulatory enforcement action and investigations by all relevant regulatory authorities.

Tax structuring

Our Tax team members advise on tax structuring and tax planning for Fintech firms and management.


Our Fintech team

Shane Kelleher, Partner and Co-Head of William Fry's Fintech Group, is Co-Chair of the Fintech & Payments Association of Ireland's regulatory group, adding to our team's comprehensive understanding of regulation in the Fintech sector. Shane has extensive experience advising regulated entitles such as EMIs and PIs (including AISPs and PISPs) on all aspects of financial regulation from authorisation to regulatory enforcement. He has particular expertise in securing regulatory authorisation for Fintechs having acted for 30% of successful applicants to the Central Bank of Ireland for authorisation as an EMI to date.

John O'Connor, Partner and Co-Head of William Fry's Fintech Group, is one of the leading technology lawyers in the Irish market with particular expertise in outsourcing and data protection. John is Chair of the Irish division of The Society for Computers and Law, the leading organisation in the UK and Ireland for technology lawyers. John is also a member of the Fintech Strategy Committee of the Fintech & Payments Association of Ireland. 


Central Bank Dear CEO Letter to Payment Institutions and Electronic Money Institutions (January 2023)

On 20 January 2023, the Central Bank published a Dear CEO Letter to payment institutions and electronic money institutions highlighting recent supervisory weaknesses identified and reaffirming supervisory expectations and actions for these sectors.

EU Crowdfunding Regulation Updates

Recent updates to European crowdfunding legislation include: (i) measures extending the transition period by 12 months for firms providing crowdfunding services under national law and (ii) the publication of technical standards.

Virtual Asset Service Providers' AML/CFT Frameworks: Central Bank Observations on VASP Applications for Registration

On 11 July 2022, the Central Bank issued a bulletin to virtual asset service providers (VASPs) outlining its regulatory expectations and setting out recurring weaknesses in, VASP registrations.

Hungarian Data Protection Authority issues Largest Fine to date to a Bank for Unlawful Use of AI

The Hungarian Data Protection Authority recently issued its largest fine to date to a bank for unlawful use of AI voice recording technology.

Central Bank Outsourcing Guidance for all Regulated Firms_

On 17 December 2021, the Central Bank published, with immediate effect, cross-industry guidance for the management of outsourcing activities.

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“The FinTech practice group has a particular strength in DLT issues. We are a blockchain company, therefore it was necessary for us to find a firm with specialist blockchain knowledge. William Fry has plenty of experience in this regard.”

“William Fry’s corporate team have superior expertise on international deals and work well within a team to add value where needed. They were well regarded by other non-Irish appointed lawyers on the deal, and so we walked away with a result.”  Chambers FinTech 2020

Shane Kelleher

  • An interviewee says: “Shane is a great regulatory lawyer who helped us turn around an authorisation with the Central Bank of Ireland. His knowledge of the regulation and his experience with licences and authorisations really helped us. On top of all of that he’s very easy to deal with and is always available.”   Chambers FinTech 2020
  • Shane Kelleher is "highly responsive and knowledgeable with respect to the FinTech legal and regulatory space. He brings a forthright and challenging mind-set with a keen eye on the commercial aspects of each regulatory challenge." IFLR1000 2020
  • "Shane is an outstanding regulatory lawyer. He deals expertly with highly technical matters and is extremely responsive and proactive. He is very highly respected by both our in-house legal team and the wider business." IFLR1000 2020
  • "Extremely strong regulatory advice, which adopts a sensible risked based approach to issues. Huge attention to detail and depth of knowledge." IFLR 1000 2018

John O'Connor 

  • “John is a stellar lawyer. I rely on him hugely for GDPR matters but also general blockchain advice,” says a satisfied client. “He’s ex-City and very strong,” adds another source. Chambers FinTech 2020
  • John O'Connor "assists with a broad range of IT matters, including data security matters and the negotiation of IT outsourcing agreements." Chambers Europe 2020
  • "John is a respected practitioner, advising on large-scale technology and outsourcing mandates, as well as assisting with cybersecurity, data protection and privacy issues. Clients appreciate his breath of knowledge and his definitiveness." Chamber Europe 2019
  • Sources praise John O'Connor's technical proficiency, observing that he is "very good to deal with. His expertise lies in technology and outsourcing transactions, encompassing systems integration, implementation arrangements and licensing matters. He also advises on data protection and cybersecurity law. He was a member of the team that assisted Microsoft on its successful challenge to the decision obtained by the US government requiring the disclosure of customer data held on Microsoft's Irish servers." Chambers Europe 2018                

Key Contacts

Shane Kelleher Partner

John O'Connor Partner

Stephen Keogh Partner

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