Gowling WLG has launched a team that specializes in blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies, the Toronto-based law firm has announced.

The firm’s new blockchain and smart contracts group — which includes lawyers with expertise in several areas, including capital markets, intellectual property, litigation, and tax — focuses on blockchain-related applications, such as initial coin offerings, smart contracts, cryptocurrency exchanges, digital wallets, and the associated legal and regulatory issues in these emerging areas.

“More and more, our clients are recognizing the unprecedented opportunities for innovation and growth offered by blockchain technology. However, as the regulatory space surrounding blockchain continues to mature, legal obstacles can make it difficult to fully embrace the benefits of the technology,” says Usman Sheikh, partner and head of the new blockchain unit in Canada, in a statement.

The firm will advise businesses, institutions, governments, and others on their blockchain strategies, Usman adds.

Gowling WLG is a co-founding member of the Blockchain Research Institute, and it is currently writing a legal guide, The Law of Blockchain Technology, which is scheduled to be published in 2018.