AUSTIN – Baker Botts L.L.P., leading international energy, technology, and life sciences law firm, advised PeopleFund in connection with the structure and formation of a fund to provide specialized capital to military veteran entrepreneurs through a nationwide network of 12 Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs).

The Veteran Loan Fund aims to fill the financial and training gap that underserved veterans face when building a small business. The fund expects to grow to $100 million within five years, an amount equal to the estimated annual demand for capital from veteran entrepreneurs that do not receive any kind of funding for their businesses.

“The Veteran Loan Fund initiative is the result of the collaborative effort of a growing group of CDFIs that provide underserved veterans with the resources they need to start or grow their businesses,” said Gustavo Lasala, President, and CEO of PeopleFund, managing member of the Veteran Loan Fund.

“We partnered with Baker Botts because we needed the legal advice of a firm that would help us consider every aspect of the facility. Their team is not only world-class but also includes veterans that understand first-hand the purpose of the fund and want to make a positive difference in the lives of those who gave so much to this country,” added Lasala.
This is the latest effort in Baker Botts’ proud history of supporting military veterans.

For an overview of the Firm’s recent work to assist veterans and advance veteran entrepreneurship, see Baker Botts Honors Military Veterans by Giving Back to the Community

The Firm’s client in this transaction, PeopleFund, is a nonprofit CDFI creating economic opportunities for underserved communities in Texas. The organization provides access to capital, education, and other resources to build healthy small businesses. Over the years PeopleFund has deployed almost $200 million in loans and grants helping more than 4,500 small businesses create or retain 15,000 jobs. 65% of participants in PeopleFund’s programs are minorities and 70% live in or serve low- and moderate-income communities.

Baker Botts Lawyers/Offices Involved:

  • Corporate: Brendan Dignan (Partner, Washington, D.C.), Courtney Fore (Partner, Austin), Andrew Thomison (Partner, Houston), William Stutts (Senior Counsel, Austin), Lee Neel Davis (Special Counsel, Washington, D.C.), Josh Espinosa (Associate, Dallas)
  • Tax: Peter Farrell (Senior Associate, Washington, D.C.)
  • Intellectual Property: Meghna Prasad (Associate, New York)

Baker Botts is an international law firm of approximately 700 lawyers practicing throughout a network of 12 offices around the globe. Based on our experience and knowledge of our clients’ industries, we are recognized as a leading firm in the energy, technology, and life sciences sectors. Since 1840, we have provided creative and effective legal solutions for our clients while demonstrating an unrelenting commitment to excellence. For more information, please visit

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