Steelman. Steelman.
January 2, 2018

We are Steelman.

Dave Dirks (44) and Simone Rutgers (34) start a new, tech-focused law firm under the name Steelman. Dirks and Rutgers have been working together for several years in the tech practice of Certa Legal. Dirks was one of the first lawyers in the Netherlands to specialize as a startup lawyer being the founder of the tech practice at Certa Legal. The team has been involved in more than 150 transactions in the past years.

Steelman advises founders and investors on setting up, structuring of and investing in startups. In addition, Steelman assist with the international expansion of startups, focuses on advice on employee participations and on exits.

Dirks: “After working for 8 years at DLA Piper in the global M & A and venture capital practice and afterwards having been at the base of Certa Legal in 2005, it is after 12 years time for a new adventure.

We want to be able to focus even better on the tech sector and use our experiences and our network even better. We guide founders and investors as their personal advisor, their chief of staff, from start to exit”.

Dirks is also co-founder and managing partner of EVO Venture Partners, a venture capital fund that focuses on cloud infrastructure investments primarily in the Northern American market. In addition, in the Netherlands he is involved with the venture capital funds Block Party and Keadyn as a partner. Next to that, Dirks and several partners have started the Angel Academy training institute, which focuses on training and educating informal investors.

Rutgers will be Dirks’ partner and is a tax specialist in addition to being a lawyer. After working at Houthoff and Greenberg Traurig for several years, she switched to Certa Legal in 2014, where she specialized in the tech practice. Rutgers has advised in dozens of investments since 2014, both from a legal as well as a tax perspective. She also specializes in employee participations in startups. She is part of the Angel Academy team and regularly gives workshops on startup investments.

With the years of experience and the network, they can offer both startups and investors more than just legal or tax advice.

About Steelman

The experienced Steelman team has advised over 150 investments and exits in recent years. John R. Steelman was the first Chief of Staff in the White House and assisted President Truman as his personal adviser from the time he took office. Steelman advises from start to exit and on all challenges to get there. More information about Steelman via and