After South Africa, Hogan Lovells launches nearshoring venture in Birmingham

After South Africa, Hogan Lovells launches nearshoring venture in Birmingham

Following Hogan Lovells announcement at the start of February that it is setting up a business process outsourcing centre in South Africa, the top 15 LB100 law firm has launched a new legal services centre in Birmingham to undertake low level legal work as a cost effective extension of its London office.

The nearshoring venture, called the Legal Service Centre, will be developed over time in response to client demand but it is expected to comprise up to 20 lawyers initially. London partner Alan Greenough will be moving to Birmingham to manage the office, which is expected to be established by autumn this year. Continue reading “After South Africa, Hogan Lovells launches nearshoring venture in Birmingham”

Sole adviser: Eversheds wins Tyco-style primary legal services contract with IATA across 158 countries

Sole adviser: Eversheds wins Tyco-style primary legal services contract with IATA across 158 countries

Building on the success of its game changing multi-million pound annual retainer with Tyco International, Eversheds has won its largest-ever primary legal services provider contract with the International Air Transport Association (IATA) across 158 countries.

Following a competitive pitch, the UK top 10 firm has secured a contract to service all the legal needs of IATA, the trade association for the world’s airlines, in 93 countries across Europe, North Asia and Asia Pacific, in addition to the existing fixed-fee contract it won last April to deliver legal services in 65 countries across Africa and the Middle East. Continue reading “Sole adviser: Eversheds wins Tyco-style primary legal services contract with IATA across 158 countries”

BT selects Axiom for global legal outsourcing and analytics contract

Jobling steps aside as head of volume business BT Law

An innovator long at the vanguard of transforming the traditional in-house legal function, BT in February entered into a three-year contract with Axiom to provide the telecoms giant with legal outsourcing and analytics services across the UK, US, Africa, Middle East and Asia, replacing and extending a contract formerly held by legal process outsourcing (LPO) provider UnitedLex.

All work previously undertaken by UnitedLex, which includes 30% of BT’s global services division’s legal work in the UK, transferred to Axiom on 1 February after a successful tender process that concluded towards the end of 2013.

Continue reading “BT selects Axiom for global legal outsourcing and analytics contract”

Legal innovation – Connect2Law’s Jabbari to join Parabis to extend ABS portfolio and set up regional network

Legal innovation – Connect2Law’s Jabbari to join Parabis to extend ABS portfolio and set up regional network

Just weeks after resigning from Manchester-based consumer services and personal injury (PI) firm Pannone following its £33m acquisition by ASX-listed Slater & Gordon, the firm’s former executive board member and chief executive of Connect2Law David Jabbari has joined Parabis as a partner.

At Parabis, which last month partnered with Direct Line Group as the insurance giant obtained authorisation from the Solicitors Regulation Authority to become an Alternative Business Structure, Jabbari (pictured) will establish a Connect2Law-style branded network of leading regional law firms in the UK. Continue reading “Legal innovation – Connect2Law’s Jabbari to join Parabis to extend ABS portfolio and set up regional network”

Guest post: The New World of Legal Work vs Global Behemoths

Guest post: The New World of Legal Work vs Global Behemoths

There’s an interesting tension between Sir Nigel Knowles prediction of legal behemoths straddling the globe with investment bankers outriders (or is it the other way round) whilst the remainder squabble over the scraps, downsize or fail (I may have sexed it up a bit, which it does not need; it’s a very interesting piece) and Jordan Furlong’s New World of Legal Work (a supercharged, short Susskind-esque parlez with the world of legal work in 2020 where firms are expected to be smaller). It too is an excellent read.

Let me pick up some of Jordan’s key points: Continue reading “Guest post: The New World of Legal Work vs Global Behemoths”

USP: PwC to expand legal services with ‘under one roof’ pitch as LLP results show legal revenue up

USP: PwC to expand legal services with ‘under one roof’ pitch as LLP results show legal revenue up

PwC has plans to grow its legal services capability and promote to clients the obvious advantages of providing business and legal advice under one roof, after the Big Four accounting giant last week became the first of its direct competitors to secure alternative business structure (ABS) status from the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).

The firm announced on 31 January that it had received authorisation from the SRA to convert to an ABS, enabling it to own PwC Legal and consolidate its global network of over 2,000 lawyers, working in a far more joined up fashion with its legal arm. Continue reading “USP: PwC to expand legal services with ‘under one roof’ pitch as LLP results show legal revenue up”

Structural or cyclical change in the law? 2014 should answer the big question

Structural or cyclical change in the law? 2014 should answer the big question

It’s been obvious that something fundamental happened to the world economy during 2008, ushering in the worst relative trading conditions since the 1930s. It is, likewise, demonstrable that this shift has had a material impact on the legal profession in terms of reduced growth prospects, changing corporate buying habits and pressure on the conventional model of law.

The point that has yet to be resolved – and which has huge significance to the western legal industry – is whether that change represents a permanent structural shift underwritten by technology and the rise of non-law firm providers, or a severe cyclical depression from which the profession will in time recover. Continue reading “Structural or cyclical change in the law? 2014 should answer the big question”

A&O the first top-tier player to forge contract lawyer service

Freelance lawyers to cover fixed-term needs.

For all the talk of innovation in the profession, experimentation with new models has so far been more evident at mid-pack players like Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) and Eversheds than elite London or New York advisers.

However, as Legal Business revealed on 25 November, Allen & Overy (A&O) has become the first top-tier outfit to challenge that orthodoxy with the Magic Circle firm launching a high-end contract lawyer service for major clients.
Continue reading “A&O the first top-tier player to forge contract lawyer service”

Legal fees: QualitySolicitors to abandon hourly rates in favour of fixed fees

Legal fees: QualitySolicitors to abandon hourly rates in favour of fixed fees

QualitySolicitors (QS) has unveiled plans to abandon the hourly rate across its network of firms, offering fixed fees for all legal services including litigation.

The group, which has around 120 members across 200 locations, is to roll out the next phase of a pilot scheme which will see 15 of its firms stop charging by the hour, with the intention to roll out the model across the network by early 2014. Continue reading “Legal fees: QualitySolicitors to abandon hourly rates in favour of fixed fees”

Guest post: The United States of Innovation – viewed from Wall Street, it could be a whole lot better

Guest post: The United States of Innovation – viewed from Wall Street, it could be a whole lot better

The other night I was fortunate enough to be invited to attend the FT’s Innovative Lawyers 2013 US awards ceremony. (The report was published here the next day in the paper, and you can download a PDF.)

Since this is now an annual event – this year marks the fourth time they’ve done it in the US – it’s an occasion to step back and see how the conversation has evolved. Here’s the telling final paragraph of last year’s introductory piece, following a lengthy series of anecdotes from managing partners about ‘buggy whips’, ‘new market dynamics’, ‘requiring behaviour to change’, ‘the wow factor’, and ‘adapting to the moving cheese’:

All the chairmen of the top firms talk about change and the need to ‘not fight the last war’. And yet at the same time they cannot, they say, see their firms being all that different in five years’ time.

Continue reading “Guest post: The United States of Innovation – viewed from Wall Street, it could be a whole lot better”