Friday, November 30, 2007

Legal Outsourcing Vendor Strengthens Management

Update3: Advantedge Global Services announced getting a CEO and a COO.

Update2: Integron announced the appointment of Ron Friedmann as Senior Vice President, Maketing.

Update: Pangea3 announced addition of Shelly Dalrymple as Vice President and promotion of Lata Setty to Senior Vice President.

Fast growing Legal Outsourcing firm, UnitedLex Corporation, recently strengthed its executive team with the addition of Anup Bhasin as the Chief Operating Officer.

Anup has been associated with the remote processing industry in India since its inception and has an extensive background in operations, corporate finance and international business development with over 12 years of experience managing onshore and offshore operations. Prior to joining UnitedLex, Anup served as the Executive Vice President at IBM Daksh (IBM’s remote processing arm in India) and was the leader for its shared services group responsible for servicing the Company across all locations.

This is another example of executives with operations experience from the BPO sector graduating to higher-end outsourcing sector such as Legal Process Outsourcing. Another key observation about LPO firms of promise is that their management teams tend to be composed of lawyers educated both in India and the west. However, that alone does not seem to be sufficient and hands-on experience in running operations especially in the outsourcing seems to be an indicator of potential success, UnitedLex and Pangea3 are examples of that.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

LPO: Clients look for scale

A reader of this blog, Claire, wrote in expressing her strengthened confidence in Centric (now acquired by Williams Lea) and put to words what was always suspected to be a top concern on a client/prospect's mind: Supplier's financial health, domain knowledge and ability to scale. Her comments:

My firm here in the UK was pitched to by Centric LPO at the beginning of this year and they did have an interesting proposition i.e. sorry to say, not just India as the solution. They had this matrix of services against locations and it was different. However, since the acquisition by Deutsche Post I think this makes Centric proposition more attractive to us. It's a scale thing. Just having that balance sheet makes you feel more comfortable. I think that's one reason LPO has been in its infancy for what seems like ages. The only real players in the market place, that really understood what they were doing, were really small India based players or big BPO guys with no idea what they were doing in the legal space.

I welcome more comments from readers about their experience of using or providing LPO services - the good, the bad and the ugly!

See also: previous post on the Centric acquisition

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

LPO: The times of the Mammoth!

A reader of this blog, noted the entry of Williams Lea - a Deutsche Post subsidiary - into LPO via acquisition of Centric LPO (earlier mention Thank you for this alert, Pat.

Looks like Williams Lea are getting into the LPO space too. They have a great track record in UK and US with Law firms but more in printing and document stuff, but this is an interesting move I think. Certainly another one to watch. They have bought Centric and are obviously taking the market seriously. My colleague reminded me that WL is owned by Deutsche Post so there could be some serious scale and push behind this.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

British firms embracing Legal Outsourcing

Update: Mark Ross has an excellent post on the potential fall-outs of passing of the Legal Services Bill in the UK.

In probably one of the few pieces focussed on British firms and their LPO interests, this article quotes the pioneering example of Clifford Chance in embracing LPO. The firm expects to save £30 million ($60 million) during the next three years by getting what may be considered quite manual (versus knowledge intensive) work out of India (they have a relationship with Integreon).

One of the partners at another large firm is acknowleged as saying that work such as document management, work that lends itself to economies of scale, is the one that firms consider first when they consider outsourcing. That the partner's own firm isn't outsourcing is a different thing.

The other LPO with greater focus on Document Processing related outsourcing from law firms, Chennai based OfficeTiger, is also reported to be working for another British firm.

Other large firms are also being mentioned in the article making it worth a read (may require subscription).

For a great example of a UK solicitor advocating outsourcing of atleast that portion of legal work that is considered grunt or mind-numbing my most associates and paralegal in US/UK, see this piece authored by Mark Ross of LawScribe.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

LPO News: Oct and Nov '07

Sorry I have been away, my absence seems to have witnessed several developments in the space:

1. Infosys BPO Legal Services
Karlyn D. Stanley and Poonam Vasudeva have been roped in by Infosys for their new venture. Karlyn was previously a partner in a Washington DC law firm while Poonam worked for another LPO before joining Infosys. Economic Times coverage here

2. CPA and Integreon
CPA Creates Alliance With Integreon to Establish Dedicated Offshore Legal Process Outsourcing Center

3. LawScribe
LawScribe LPO Ethics Seminar Approved for MCLE Credit

4. SDD Global
a. The company has been tapped to navigate the legal issues for "Virulents," a collaboration between New Regency Productions, and Virgin Comics (founded by Richard Branson, Shekhar Kapur, and Deepak Chopra), to be distributed by 20th Century Fox.
b. Sony Pictures has come back to Mysore to ask the company for more legal work on a politically-tinged, blockbuster comedy, now set to be filmed in the first half of 2008, and involving some of the most famous actors in Hollywood.
c. Indian attorneys at the company are involved in every aspect of the legal preparations of Sacha Baron Cohen's next release by Universal Studios.
d. With its Chairman and President as lead defense counsel, the company is now doing all the legal work in rebuttal to the controversial Hollywood defamation action against "Da Ali G Show."