Why would a partner quit an elite London law firm with decades of history, Rolls-Royce support and a superb client base for the uncertain prospects of the City arm of a US rival?
Money is the obvious answer and in a sector in which laterals regularly increase their compensation by 50-100%, that is obviously a big part of the equation. One Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer rainmaker is currently reported to be sitting on a $10m a year standing offer. Continue reading “The Departed”
Making Baker McKenzie stand out was once a simple business. The day in 1948 Russell Baker met John McKenzie by chance in a cab, he had already conceived the notion of an international law firm. Formed in 1949, its first international office was added six years later in Caracas, Venezuela. In the decades to follow, the Chicago-bred firm stood out as a genuinely global operator in a profession that remained largely a domestic concern.
True, having been stitched together from a series of financially separate offices, Bakers never worried the legal elite in New York and London, being dismissed by some as a mid-market franchise thanks to a multi-partnership model that was then unheard of. But Bakers could point to global coverage well beyond any peer, including market-leading practices in many jurisdictions where few rivals dared venture. Passing the $1bn mark in 2001, Bakers turned over more than $2bn just seven years later, making it one of the largest firms in the world. Continue reading “Waking the giant”
Alex Novarese, Legal Business: Looking at the top of the market, how is buying behaviour changing?
Donny Ching, Royal Dutch Shell: I see increasing sophistication in sourcing legal services. I am sure you all have experienced tenders and reverse tenders. More corporates are looking at using different tools, also driven by the contracting and procurement [C&P] organisation. Procuring legal services used to be the last bastion, where C&P could not touch. That is changing. We hired our own pricing analyst sourcing officer a couple of years ago. He has done phenomenal work and opened our eyes to what is possible. Continue reading “Irresistible forces”