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Linklaters finishes tech jigsaw with hire of Ashurst’s global IT head

Linklaters has bolstered its technology clout with the hire of Ashurst’s well-regarded head of global IT, Bruna Pellicci.

Pellicci becomes the Magic Circle firm’s chief technology officer (CTO) after more than 11 years at Ashurst, five of which were as the firm’s global IT director.

She will report to Linklaters’ global chief operating officer and director of technology, Matt Peers, and have responsibility for the firm’s technology initiatives and information security. Linklaters has a 250-strong IT team.

Peers, who took on his role in May, told Legal Business: ‘Bruna is established in the legal field, but more than that she has tried to push the legal field. She has been involved in a lot of transformative activity and having someone who is good at driving change initiatives always adds horsepower to the firm.’

Peers believed Pellicci could be the last significant technology hire the firm needs: ‘On the innovation side we had enough thought innovation, what we were missing is making these ideas a reality. Bruna completes our team, she is the last piece of the jigsaw.’

Linklaters also has an ongoing relationship with tech start-up Eigen Technologies, which earlier this year raised £13m. Headed by one of the firm’s former advisers, Lewis Liu, Linklaters and Eigen developed and launched data extraction tool Nakhoda in 2017.

Pellicci’s move has been a long time coming after Ashurst hired CTO Noel Jordan in April as her replacement. It also comes as firms increasingly look to technology specialists to respond to client pressures to re-evaluate delivery processes and costs.

It is also the latest in a string of technology related hires this year, with Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer hiring Charlotte Baldwin in January and Ashurst making a significant play by re-hiring Christopher Georgiou after he left to head up Fieldfisher’s alternative legal services arm, Condor.

For more on tech and innovation at the UK’s 12 largest firms, see ‘Law firm tech: Turning the lights on’.