Friday, April 30, 2010

Possible New Entrant?

We recently saw a possible new entrant into the legal outsourcing sector. Thompson Reuters announced what appears to be a quasi-legal outsourcing center in Taguig City, Philippines. It’s not clear if this is for internal purposes only or if they will be directly competing in the LPO space. As an information service organization, Thompson Reuters potentially comes into the LPO market with a unique angle and vast connections with legal professionals around the world.

It will be interesting to see how this will make an impact in several of areas. How will this change the relationship between Reuters and their clients? Will firms coming into the market find it more attractive to pick up a company rather than grow their own? Will this continue to blur the lines in the legal outsourcing industry, in this case, library sciences?

More discussion is also available at 3 Geeks and a Law Blog.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

WilmerHale Insourcing

Some interesting new insourcing developments occurred this week with the D.C.-based law firm WilmerHale. The firm is launching an onshore delivery center in Dayton, Ohio which will provide a host of support services.

According to the official press release posted on the WilmerHale website, services to be performed include traditional back office services such as “finance, human resources, information technology services, [and] operations.” Additional services to be performed also include traditional legal outsourcing services such as document review and management.

The stated goal of the initiative is to “provide improved efficiencies for administrative teams and the firm, and reduce significant operational expenses.”

This announcement directly affirms the findings and projections of our 2010 Global Sourcing Study, which is currently available online at:

As noted in the Global Sourcing Study, legal outsourcing vendors will face increased indirect competition if law firms do indeed become more efficient on their own. It will be interesting to see if similarly positioned firms in high-cost jurisdictions seek to improve the competitiveness of their firm through consolidation and domestic cost arbitrage.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Two’s Company, Three’s a Crowd

The last several weeks, we’ve seen a number of press releases regarding the vendor relationships with the software giant Microsoft.

The announcement-spree was kicked off with a release by CPA Global reporting that Microsoft is currently employing a “team of between three and five qualified lawyers at CPA [that] are handling multi-jurisdictional legal support work, including legal research… in CPA's offices in Gurgaon.” This was the second major public release by CPA after the Rio Tinto engagement in June 2009.

Coming quickly on the heels of the CPA release was a separate release from Integreon. The details of the release reported Integreon to be the “exclusive provider of offshore managed document review” on behalf of Microsoft. This was one of the first major corporate engagements publically announced by Integreon.

The contract management portion of the Integreon-Microsoft engagement is reported to be handled primarily by Intgreon’s onshore delivery facilities in Fargo, North Dakota with “eight full-time contract specialists.” This is reflective of the importance of onshore-offshore engagement structures for legal outsourcing engagements as reported in the recently released Fronterion 2010 Global Sourcing Study and also featured in The Lawyer.

While not a legal service engagement, the third and most recent vendor announcement came from Infosys. It is reported that Infosys is servicing Microsoft to “manage internal IT services for Microsoft worldwide” including “IT help desk, desk-side services, and infrastructure and application support from multiple global centers.”

Who knows who will be next in the Microsoft vendor release bonanza?

Monday, April 12, 2010

Chicago Entrepreneurship Conference

This coming week I have the pleasure of speaking at the Chicago Entrepreneurship Conference hosted by Minogi and iFoundry. I will be speaking on global business and entrepreneurship through my experiences at Fronterion. Other prominent speakers and event details include:

In a globalizing and challenging economy, the next generation of creative entrepreneurs will be reinventing the business world. Join featured speaker Laura Hollis of the Univeristy of Illinois, Carl Nordgren of Minogi, Zach Kaplan of Inventables, Phil Tadros of Doejo, Loran Nordgren of Kellogg, James Interlandi of Virtual General Counsel, Michael Bell of Fronterion, Nate Kontny of Inkling Markets, Vishu Ramanathan of ThinkLink, Jonathan Naber of the Illini Prosthetics Team, Darren Marshall of Doejo, and Jason Tillery of ThinkLink at the Creative Entrepreneurship Workshop that will guide you through the creative processes of founding your startup, avoiding startup pitfalls, and connecting with creative entrepreneurs in the midwest and abroad.

The event will be held at the University of Illinois Chicago campus Saturday April 17th. More information is available online.