New Law meets Big Four – Has Deloitte got the conviction to match its free-thinking legal pitch?

New Law meets Big Four – Has Deloitte got the conviction to match its free-thinking legal pitch?

Thomas Alan asks if Deloitte can find a new angle on legal services

The often cited but seldom-seen legal arrival of the Big Four has long passed into a professional joke, though renewed investment from the major accountancy groups in the last three years has given the debate fresh urgency. But, truly, something must have changed in the wind, as even that traditional hold-out, Deloitte, has signalled its intention to build a significant law presence. Continue reading “New Law meets Big Four – Has Deloitte got the conviction to match its free-thinking legal pitch?”

KPMG ups the ante with 145-lawyer hire in France and new consultancy service

KPMG ups the ante with 145-lawyer hire in France and new consultancy service

KPMG has added its name to the list of Big Four accountants ramping up their legal service offering in recent months, with a mammoth team hire from French law firm Fidal and the launch of a new legal consulting service.

News emerged today (8 February) that 145 lawyers have left Fidal to join the accountant’s newly created French legal arm, KPMG Avocats. The tax-focused team includes 26 partners, and KPMG Avocats plans to eventually grow its headcount to more than 400. Continue reading “KPMG ups the ante with 145-lawyer hire in France and new consultancy service”

Accountants keep coming as Deloitte hires A&O banking partner as UK legal head

Accountants keep coming as Deloitte hires A&O banking partner as UK legal head

Deloitte has made a clear statement of intent in legal services by announcing today (14 January) that it has lured Allen & Overy (A&O) banking partner Michael Castle across to lead its UK legal arm, as the Big Four outfit looks for greater traction in the legal sector.

Based in Deloitte’s London office, Castle will now lead a technology-orientated legal offering for Deloitte, having spent more than two decades at A&O. Becoming an partner in 2007, Castle was not a standout name in a finance department replete with leading individuals but did gain profile in recent years after unsuccessfully running for the managing partner role at A&O, before eventually being beaten by current leader Andrew Ballheimer. Continue reading “Accountants keep coming as Deloitte hires A&O banking partner as UK legal head”

PwC ups the ante in legal services with new Fragomen US alliance

PwC ups the ante in legal services with new Fragomen US alliance

Building on the Big Four’s sustained attempts to disrupt the legal services market, PwC has extended its presence in the US through a partnership with immigration specialist Fragomen.

The agreement, announced today (24 September), will see the two entities jointly market their respective immigration services in the US.  The alliance gives PwC access to Fragomen’s considerable stateside firepower, with the firm boasting 16 offices across the country. Continue reading “PwC ups the ante in legal services with new Fragomen US alliance”

Into the mainstream: another big New Law exit sees EY acquire Riverview Law

Into the mainstream: another big New Law exit sees EY acquire Riverview Law

Mere months after New Law pioneer Lawyers On Demand (LOD) secured private equity backers to position itself as a global player, fellow alternative legal services business darling, Riverview Law, has been acquired by Big Four accountancy firm EY.

The financial details of the deal, announced today (7 August), were not disclosed, but Riverview’s turnover is believed to have risen to more than £10m since it launched in 2012, meaning the acquisition is expected to carry a hefty price tag. Continue reading “Into the mainstream: another big New Law exit sees EY acquire Riverview Law”

Upping the ante: City Law feels pressure on transparency as Big Four includes partners in gender pay stats

Upping the ante: City Law feels pressure on transparency as Big Four includes partners in gender pay stats

The Big Four accountancy firms have set a precedent for their legal counterparts by disclosing updated gender pay gap figures that include equity partners.

The result is a substantial increase in the pay gap between men and women, adding pressure on law  firms to follow suit and reveal the disparity in remuneration  at the top. Continue reading “Upping the ante: City Law feels pressure on transparency as Big Four includes partners in gender pay stats”

‘Not another mid-market law firm’: Deloitte to make much-anticipated foray into UK legal market

‘Not another mid-market law firm’: Deloitte to make much-anticipated foray into UK legal market

Often trumpeted as a potential disruptor to the UK legal market, the last of the Big Four accountancy firms, Deloitte, is primed to enter the fray as an alternative business structure (ABS).

The global professional services giant confirmed yesterday (10 January) that it would be using technology such as automated document review and contract management to underpin the new legal offering. In addition, Deloitte will be launching a consulting service to help in-house legal teams get the best out of technology. Continue reading “‘Not another mid-market law firm’: Deloitte to make much-anticipated foray into UK legal market”

The rise of the accountants continues as PwC launches in DC

The rise of the accountants continues as PwC launches in DC

PwC will continue to spearhead the push by the Big Four accountancy firms into the global legal services market with the launch of a law firm in Washington DC.

ILC Legal will open in the US capital later this month to service US multinationals in their business dealings overseas. Continue reading “The rise of the accountants continues as PwC launches in DC”

Comment: The Big Four – they’d have done it by now if they cared

Comment: The Big Four – they’d have done it by now if they cared

At the debate I recently attended on future of law-type stuff everything was proceeding to plan. Once the panel finished on artificial intelligence (AI), the law firm model and partners being useless, conversation turned to the Big Four. You know the gist: HERE THEY COME – GLOBAL – SLICK – WAY-AHEAD-OF-LAW-FIRMS.

Continue reading “Comment: The Big Four – they’d have done it by now if they cared”

The Big Four – they’d have done it by now if they cared

The Big Four – they’d have done it by now if they cared

At the debate I recently attended on future of law-type stuff everything was proceeding to plan. Once the panel finished on artificial intelligence (AI), the law firm model and partners being useless, conversation turned to the Big Four. You know the gist: HERE THEY COME – GLOBAL – SLICK – WAY-AHEAD-OF-LAW-FIRMS.

Of course, the case that these professional service giants with superb boardroom access and resources way beyond the largest law firms should become leaders in law sounds persuasive. And yet discussion of the Big Four still gives so little weight to the plain fact that, with varying degrees of enthusiasm, they have been at this for more than 20 years and have yet to get anywhere near justifying the hype. The only conclusion can be that there is something fundamental to their approach and models that frustrates their progress.

Continue reading “The Big Four – they’d have done it by now if they cared”