James L. Jerue Partner
  • D 312.606.3202
  • F 312.267.2204
James L. Jerue
"I love jazz and, like the jazz greats, an entrepreneur has to be ready to improvise. It’s a privilege to help an entrepreneur create a great business that looks little like the business the entrepreneur first thought he or she was creating."

Jim is a partner in HMB’s Business and Finance Group. He focuses his practice on start-up and early stage financings, mergers and acquisitions, contract negotiation and providing counsel to company executives and their boards of directors.

Jim represents businesses from their beginnings through initial financing, growth initiatives, subsequent financing and ultimate liquidity. While a large portion of Jim’s practice is centered in the technology space, Jim also represents entrepreneurs who seek to purchase, operate and grow established businesses in areas such as marketing, packaging, manufacturing and distribution.

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Jim also provides general counsel services related to business transition, employment issues, partnership and LLC agreements and securities matters. Jim’s general counsel clients include professional service firms, health care providers and payors, retailers and outsourced business service providers

A presence in Chicago’s start-up community, Jim leads HMB’s relationship with and sponsorship of Hyde Park Angels, the most active angel investment organization in the Midwest. Jim serves as a mentor at the business accelerator Techstars Chicago and advises at the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business as well as Food Foundry, a food start-up accelerator housed at 1871, Chicago’s Technology and Entrepreneurship Center.

A Business-Savvy Approach

Clients rely on Jim for more than legal advice; they appreciate his respect for the human elements of both their transaction and their business. With decades of experience, Jim’s approach is informed by listening first and simplifying the difficult. Jim’s focus is helping his clients get to “yes,” whether that’s a closed financing, a signed contract or a successful business sale.


University of California at Los Angeles, J.D.

Northwestern University, B.A




  • Illinois Super Lawyers (2010-2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017)
  • AV Rated
  • Chicago’s Best Startup Lawyers, Red Rocket (2012)

Professional Memberships

  • Chicago Bar Associations
  • Business Law Committee (former Chair)
  • Subcommittee on Non-Corporate Business Entities for six years (former Chair),
  • Subcommittee on Private Equity for three years (former Co-Chair)
  • Member, Executive Committee of the Committee on Partnerships and Unincorporated Business Organizations of the American Bar Association’s Business Law Section (former Program Chair)
  • Illinois Secretary of State’s Corporation Law Advisory Committee (former member)

Community Involvement

  • Mentor at the Chicago business accelerator Techstars Chicago (formerly Excelerate Labs)
  • Leads HMB’s relationship with and sponsorship of Hyde Park Angels, an angel investment organization affiliated with the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business.


  • HMB Represents Hyde Park Angels in Lead Investment in Chicago-Based Smart Building StartupAugust 25, 2020

    Cohesion, a Chicago-based startup which makes a SaaS platform for building managers, announced that it raised $6.5 million in a funding round led by HPA, with participation from Frasers Property Group, investment firm CMT and a host of individual angel investors. HMB represented Hyde Park Angels (HPA) in their lead investment and congratulates HPA on the closing. HPA's people-first approach…

  • HMB Represented the Founder of VisTracks in Sale to Global Leader in Transportation and LogisticsMay 28, 2020

    Omnitracs, LLC ("Omnitracs"), a global pioneer of fleet management solutions to transportation and logistics companies, announced its acquisition of VisTracks, a leading provider of device-agnostic, SaaS-based compliance solutions to the transportation and logistics industry. HMB represented VisTracks' founder, Stephen G. Eick, in the transaction. The VisTracks architecture provides a lightweight, mobile device-based and cloud-enabled solution, which will allow Omnitracs to…

  • HMB Represented Project Management Advisors in Partnership Deal with Austin-Based Construction Management CompanyMay 27, 2020

    Project Management Advisors ("PMA"), a real estate and development consultancy company, announced its partnership with American Realty Project Management ("ARPM"), a full-range construction oversight and project management company. HMB represented PMA. This partnership will expand the Austin offices and broaden both PMA and ARPM client and industry sector involvement in the Austin market and neighboring area. The alliance will continue…

  • HMB Represents Foxtrot in $17M Growth RoundFebruary 10, 2020

    Foxtrot, a modern convenience store offering in-store and delivery options, announced that it raised $17 million in a funding round co-led by Imaginary Ventures and Wittington Ventures and joined by previous investors Fifth Wall, Lerer Hippeau, Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund, M3 Ventures, The University of Chicago, Collaborative VC and Wasson Enterprises as well as new investors Bluestein…

  • HMB Represents NextLevel in $50M Merger with California-Based Healthcare CompanyJanuary 10, 2020

    NextLevel Health Innovations, Inc. ("NextLevel"), a managed care health plan for Cook County residents with Medicaid known for its community involvement, has signed a Merger Agreement with Molina Healthcare, Inc. ("Molina"), a FORTUNE 500 company. HMB represented NextLevel in the negotiation and signing of the Merger Agreement. As part of the transaction, Molina will assume the right to serve approximately…

  • University of California at Los Angeles, J.D.
  • Northwestern University, B.A
  • Illinois
500 West Madison Suite 3700
Chicago IL 60661

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