jordanfurlong + global   170

Populism is growing because more people than you think want chaos - RSA
At the heart of populism is the divide between the establishment and the people.

Two new studies suggest that divide is deeper than we think. A substantial number of people aren’t just angry at certain policies or leaders but want to simply smash the system – and enjoy the chaos. Perhaps we don’t know as much about political alienation as we think we do.

Populism needs the establishment
Populism grows from and deliberately reinforces anti-establishment feelings. All opposition involves articulating a critique of those in power. But while conventional parties focus largely on the record and ideology of those they are trying to replace, populists typically widen this to an angrier, more amorphous critique of the whole system.

It can be a problem for populists if they win. It puts them at risk of becoming the establishment themselves. But today’s populists in government have developed a sophisticated playbook of tactics intended to convince their supporters they are still radical outsiders facing elite conspiracies.

Sometimes, as with Trump, the enemies are portrayed as working within the system. In other countries, like Hungary, they are presented as external saboteurs, part of the liberal cabal said to be running most international governance institutions.
global  future 
15 days ago by JordanFurlong
Lessons From the Past for Trump's Transactional Foreign Policy
I see three big lessons in 18th century British diplomatic history. First, transactionalism is difficult to do right, frequently driving former allies into enemy camps; second, trust takes decades to build but only days to destroy; and third, British transactionalism would not have succeeded had the country not possessed the world's fastest-growing economy and most modern institutions and infrastructure. Three centuries later, the United States possesses few, if any, of these advantages. American leaders might want to pay attention to Britain's earlier experiment with transactionalism if they are to avoid paying all the same costs without reaping any of the same benefits.
4 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
Republicans and Democrats Don't Understand Each Other - The Atlantic
Americans who rarely or never follow the news are surprisingly good at estimating the views of people with whom they disagree. On average, they misjudge the preferences of political adversaries by less than 10 percent. Those who follow the news most of the time, by contrast, are terrible at understanding their adversaries. On average, they believe that the share of their political adversaries who endorse extreme views is about 30 percent higher than it is in reality.

Perhaps because institutions of higher learning tend to be dominated by liberals, Republicans who have gone to college are not more likely to caricature their ideological adversaries than those who dropped out of high school. But among Democrats, education seems to make the problem much worse. Democrats who have a high-school degree suffer from a greater perception gap than those who don’t. Democrats who went to college harbor greater misunderstandings than those who didn’t. And those with a postgrad degree have a way more skewed view of Republicans than anybody else.
july 2019 by JordanFurlong
What Does the New Qualcomm Ruling Mean for 5G and the U.S.-China Tech War?
The White House even sees 5G technological development as a national security issue, and it strongly values Qualcomm's 5G business. Last year Trump nixed Broadcom's $117 billion attempt to take over Qualcomm, citing national security concerns about Broadcom's relationship with third parties — specifically China. Republicans have even called on the White House to try to stop the FTC's case against Qualcomm and get it to settle. (Functionally, this is unlikely given the FTC's status as an independent agency and one of only two parts of the U.S. government that can see certain kind of antitrust cases, along with the Department of Justice.)

Critics of Koh's ruling have argued that by destabilizing Qualcomm and potentially limiting its research and development, the U.S. government is essentially shooting itself in the foot in the tech war with China. Earlier this month while Koh was still weighing her decision, the Department of Justice filed a briefing warning that the case could hurt U.S. companies' competitiveness in the 5G realm, which would ultimately benefit China. And, indeed, representatives from Huawei itself were eager to testify in the case to try to weaken its competitor.

But Huawei's global competitiveness — and by extension China's — has suffered recently too. A U.S. decision last week to place the company on the U.S. Commerce Department's Entity List means that U.S. suppliers must ask for the department to grant a permanent license to export to Huawei. This barrier will likely prevent some suppliers from working with Huawei, hurting the company's ability to remain a global smartphone competitor and 5G vendor and limiting its own investment into research and development.

Koh's decision – if upheld – will be a landmark one for the telecommunications industry. Not only will it fundamentally change the way that Qualcomm works in the industry by forcing a potential change to its business model, but it will have global ramifications in the broader tech war between China and the United States.
global  china 
may 2019 by JordanFurlong
Davos: Globalism Saved the World and Damned the West - The Atlantic
But it would be a mistake to say that left-wing populism is simply the mirror equivalent of the right. While Trump is perhaps the least popular president in modern history, Senator Elizabeth Warren’s proposed wealth tax is quite popular among Democrats. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s suggested 70 percent marginal rate on American deca-millionaires is supported by, conveniently, 70 percent of all voters. “Medicare for All” also attracts large majorities, though the slogan seems to mean different things to different people.

Read: The next populist revolution will be Latino

What’s more, taxing the rich to fund universalist programs directly addresses middle-class insecurities caused by global capitalism—unlike, say, building a giant border wall. Free markets without income security have been a recipe for instability. So have socialist policies that stamp out free markets. But some members of the American left seem to be pointing to a compromise: a new system of universal guarantees supported by higher taxes and higher peacetime deficits in this context of a capitalist system. That would include health care for all, a child allowance, and an expanded system of wage subsidies to ensure a basic standard of living for Americans.
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Asia's Lateral Market: More Partners from U.S.-based Firms Jump to Chinese Firms; Fewer Lawyers Moving to U.S. Firms | The American Lawyer
And Fangda is only one of several elite Chinese firms that are on a recruitment tear that targets senior lawyers from global firms. Throughout 2018, nine Chinese law firms hired 22 partners who most recently practiced at global firms, according to an analysis conducted by’s  The Asian Lawyer of 228 partner-level hires recorded across Asia during the 12 months ended Dec. 31, 2018.
The 22 partners more than tripled the seven moves from international firms to Chinese firms recorded in a 14-month period ended February 2016. And half of the 22 lawyers had already made partner before moving to Chinese firms, whereas in 2015-16, all seven lawyers made the jump to partner by moving from an international firm to a Chinese firm.

The Chinese firms making most of these hires—Fangda, Han Kun Law Offices, Jingtian & Gongcheng and Commerce & Finance (Tongshang)—already have sound reputations in the market and are financially capable of making more ambitious hires. Firms such as Fangda and Haiwen & Partners have traditionally hired lawyers with global firm experience and offer a shorter partnership track. But they are now willing to invest in more senior hires as they grow to compete with global players for more premium work.

Part of that expansion is to develop a viable practice in Hong Kong. Last year, 13 out of the 22 partners Chinese firms recruited from international firms were in Hong Kong. That compares to only two in 2015, both hired by Zhong Lun Law Firm, which at the time was one of the few mainland firms with a sizable Hong Kong office. In 2018, Han Kun, Jingtian and Tongshang, which didn’t have or had just started their Hong Kong offering three years earlier, were among the most active recruiters in Hong Kong as Chinese firms expanded in the city.

Many of these hires have been fueled by a push by Chinese firms for a more prominent role in Hong Kong listings work. Several of last year’s most high-profile moves, such as Shearman & Sterling Asia capital markets head Colin Law’s departure for Fangda, and Mayer Brown Hong Kong senior partner Elaine Lo’s jump to Jingtian & Gongcheng, fell into that category.
china  laterals  global 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
On Trade, the U.S. Is Taking a 1930s Mindset to a 21st-Century Fight
Although multilateral talks to reduce trade barriers involving all WTO members have slowed to a crawl, countries other than the United States have shown a renewed interest in signing more trade deals to compensate for Washington's current protectionism. A trade pact between the European Union and Canada went into effect last year, while a similar deal between the European bloc and Japan will go into effect on Feb. 1. On a multilateral level, the Trans-Pacific Partnership might have failed because of the U.S. withdrawal, but the defunct deal's remaining members — including Japan, Mexico and Canada — signed their own agreement, which came into force at the end of 2018. These deals not only tackle tariffs but also touch on many of the deeper issues beyond them. 

The upshot is that the United States is worse off than many of its competitors when trying to access key markets. Take, for example, its immediate southern and northern neighbors; as a result of the new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), companies that set up shop in Mexico or Canada can export via preferential trade agreements to the United States, the European Union and Japan — three of the four largest markets in the world. Firms operating solely in the United States, however, don't have easy access to either the European bloc or Japan. Washington is discussing trade deals with both Brussels and Tokyo, but Trump's focus on restricting imports and reducing tariffs suggests that the White House will prioritize concessions on those issues, meaning that U.S. companies will still face nontariff barriers in those markets, even if the countries finally sign trade deals. And given the complexity of the contemporary, globalized world's supply chains, those nontariff barriers and labeling harmonization issues will loom ever larger.
january 2019 by JordanFurlong
PwC Forms Alliance With US Firm, Furthering Big Four's Ambitions in Law | The American Lawyer
PwC has agreed to an alliance with U.S. immigration specialist law firm Fragomen in one of the most significant examples to date of the Big Four joining forces with a law firm. 
The alliance between PwC UK and Fragomen—which has more than 50 offices around the world and posted revenue of $577 million (£441 million) for 2017—will hand PwC a major foothold in the U.S. market, where the New York-based firm has 16 offices across all major financial centers.

The deal brings together two of the world’s top providers in the immigration sphere and will see PwC and Fragomen team up to jointly pitch for work from multinational clients. Significantly, the relationship will also enable shared clients to draw on PwC’s complementary services in tax, Social Security and global mobility consulting.
In a joint statement, the firms said the strategic alliance would see them collaborate and jointly market their immigration services, while also giving them “the ability to come together to provide integrated services to their respective clients.”

PwC’s global immigration practice covers 170 countries, while the 550-lawyer Fragomen has offices in more than 25 countries outside the U.S., including an eight-partner London
global  merger  immigration  accountants  competition 
september 2018 by JordanFurlong
No, I Will Not Debate You
There’s no way to come out of this convinced of your own political purity. The thing is, though, that establishing your own political purity isn’t what progressive politics are supposed to be about. As Ms. Marvel says: Good is not a thing you are. It’s a thing you do. This is not about censorship. It never was. It’s about consequences, about drawing a line in the sand.
september 2018 by JordanFurlong
Sir Mark Ivan Rogers KCMG speech at British Irish Chamber of Commerce Annual Gala Dinner - British Irish Chamber
Ladies and gentlemen: we now face a very critical few months in the Brexit process, and the potential for a severe political crisis between the UK and the EU, as well as for domestic British political turmoil on a scale we have not seen since the War.

We need a great deal of wisdom to be shown on all sides if we are to avoid, over Brexit, the sort of bitterness which this Continent thought it had left behind for good.

This autumn marks the 100th anniversary of the end of the first great global conflagration of the 20th century. One cannot but be reminded of the wisdom of what Maynard Keynes wrote in his brilliant work on the Economic Consequences of the Peace in 1919.

I quote:

“Very few of us realise with conviction the intensely unusual, unstable, complicated, unreliable and temporary nature of the economic organisation by which Western Europe has lived for the last half century. We assume some of the most peculiar and temporary of our late advantages as permanent, and to be depended upon, and lay our plans accordingly. On this sandy and false foundation, we scheme for social improvement and dress our political platforms, pursue our animosities and particular ambitions, and feel ourselves with enough margin in hand to foster, not assuage, conflict in the European family”.
future  global 
september 2018 by JordanFurlong
Baker McKenzie’s Growth Shows Value of One-Stop Legal Shopping – Big Law Business
Some of the major legal matters the firm handled over the past fiscal year included:

Lead counsel on the German company Knauf’s proposed $6 billion takeover of USG Corporation, the construction materials company.
Advisors to board of directors in LafargeHolcim investigation of its operations in Syria.
Legal counsel in sale of Sheraton Buenos Aires Hotel & Convention Center and Park Tower Hotel for about $100 million.
Legal counsel to DK Telekommunikation and a consortium in a $6.7 million takeover of Danish telecoms business TDC A/S.
Advisor to Marriott hotel group in a transaction to manage a casino hotel in Madrid, the first to be located in the city in 20 years.
Lead counsel for France-based pharmaceutical company Servier in its acquisition of Shire’s oncology business for $2.4 billion.
Baker McKenzie also focused on plowing money back into the firm to innovate and upgrade its operations, and hired laterally from other firms to boost its book of business. Like other mega-firms, it is spread widely geographically and operates under a vertically integrated model that tries to offer one-stop legal shopping for multinational corporations.
firms  innovation  global 
august 2018 by JordanFurlong
From Nigeria to Brazil to Canada: Access to Justice Tech on the International Stage | Legaltech News
The Global Legal Hackathon—a legal tech development competition that boasted participants from across five continents and, in the first round, over 40 cities—held its third and final round in New York on April 21.  Of the 14 remaining participants, two team were chosen as winners for the public sector tech category.

But while only two access to justice solutions took the top spots, many more competed in the monthslong event. The scope and diversity of these solutions underscored how such tech is shaping up across the world in response to both local and global problems.

A Florianópolis, Brazil-based team, for instance, developed a solution named Apresente-se that allows local citizens to remotely be present before justice officials when needed. Alexandre Golin Krammes, product adviser at Softplan and a part of the Apresente-se team, noted that being present before a court can oftentimes be an arduous and time consuming endeavor because of his country’s overburdened judicial system.

“Nowadays in Brazil going to the court, they have long lines and the court has to have available employees to check them and say everything is OK,” he said.
startups  access  global 
april 2018 by JordanFurlong
HLS CLP | The Practice | The Rise of Big Law in China
The case of China also provides a key alternative to the stories of law firm growth in the Anglo-American world. Most existing theories of law firm growth (e.g., Marc Galanter and Thomas Palay’s classic book Tournament of Lawyers) seek to explain firm growth by the internal dynamics within a law firm, such as the Cravath system of hiring and promotion or the reputational bonding and human capital diversification among partners. As a result, the growth trajectories of many large law firms appear highly homogeneous. What we found in the Chinese case, however, differs from the conventional story in two important aspects. First, law firm growth is caused not so much by internal factors such as the lockstep system or case referrals, but primarily by the competition, symbiosis, accommodation, assimilation, and other processes of interaction among law firms in what we call “the ecology of organizational growth.” Second, in this organizational ecology, law firms occupying different positions have developed distinct growth strategies in their march toward Big Law. As the rest of this article will demonstrate, the three largest Chinese law firms (e.g., Dacheng, Yingke, and King & Wood) are different from one another in almost every aspect except size. More importantly, their rapid growth in the past decade has generated disruptions to the Chinese corporate legal market as a whole, and many of their competitors have also adapted themselves in various ways to cope with the brave new world of Big Law in China.
china  firms  global 
january 2018 by JordanFurlong
What does the legal firm of the future look like?
What drives higher profits for law firms?

The Australian legal services industry is in transition. Across the market, firms tell us they are under pressure from cost-cutting clients, innovative competitors and disruptive technologies. Many have responded by rethinking the way they do business — introducing new systems, investing in technology and refining their client offering.

In these benchmarking results, we take a closer look at how firms of different sizes are remaking themselves, and discover what it takes to earn above average profits in today’s legal services market.

Let’s look at the numbers
Because smaller firms have greater scope to achieve high margins and rapid growth, we’ve used distinct performance benchmarks for large, mid-size and small firms, centred on each group’s average profit.
global  australia  metrics  future  profitability 
november 2017 by JordanFurlong
What Can African Agriculture Learn From Brazil? - Stratfor Worldview
Despite its acidic, weathered and tropical soils, with low fertility, Brazil is notable for its science-based, technology-driven and high-yielding tropical agriculture. For us in Africa, about 874 million hectares of our land is considered suitable for agriculture. Although 83 percent of this has fertility challenges and other limitations that require huge improvement costs for optimum performance, one of the lessons we can gather from Brazil's agriculture success is the development of new crops and forage varieties that can withstand harsh environmental conditions.

For instance, research and entrepreneurial efforts in Brazil led to the development and cultivation of soybeans for lower altitudes. This variety of soybeans could yield even higher than those produced in temperate regions.

To change the farming environment in Africa, we must adopt new technologies, modern innovations — including improved seeds — selective agrochemicals, and mechanization of agricultural activities. In fact, we need to encourage more large scale or commercial farming systems. Commercial farming on large hectares of land will maximize the use of modern machineries, reduce labour cost and increase productivity.

Increased research into plant breeding and genetic engineering based on the unique soil types in Africa and the prevailing climate conditions is a major requirement to develop high-yielding crops, maximize available land and improve the competitiveness of Africa's agriculture. We will have more than enough to feed ourselves and export to other nations.

For areas in Africa struggling with drought, a number of interventions are available to aid crop production. For instance, there is a water-efficient maize variety that can yield four tonnes per hectare. The yield of this variety of maize surpasses the existing commercial varieties by 56 percent.
global  africa 
november 2017 by JordanFurlong
Comment: What’s the point of Baker McKenzie?
The sentiment is welcome but getting there will not be easy. In fact it will be exceedingly difficult. Bakers is a hugely complex beast to marshal, while its fondness for consensus has often tipped over into bureaucracy and outright inertia. And for an operator with widely-cited communication skills, Rawlinson at times makes heavy going of articulating what is a coherent game plan.
strategy  global 
november 2017 by JordanFurlong
Globalisation has marginalised many regions in the rich world
If there is a particular reason to favour dispersion of technological know-how and economic activity, it is that the concentration of such things also corresponds to a concentration of power. Since the late 1990s, as you would expect given the logic of globalisation, American industry has become more concentrated and more profitable. Superstar firms can draw on their financial and political capital to quash or take over would-be rivals, leaving fewer high-growth companies with the potential to anchor local economies. Not all these superstar perks are necessarily invidious, but looked at in the context of regional economies they can have striking effects. The announcement in June that Amazon would purchase Whole Foods, a grocer, led to a sharp drop in the share prices of companies like Walmart (headquartered in Bentonville, Arkansas), Target (Minneapolis, Minnesota) and Kroger (Cincinnati, Ohio). Amazon has since asked America’s cities what they would be willing to offer to get its planned second headquarters, equal in status to the original in Seattle. Scores of cities responded with detailed investment plans and juicy incentives: a testament to the power wielded by America’s corporate superstars. But Amazon’s demands—which include a large, skilled workforce, lots of big-city amenities and extensive transport links—suggest that the prize will go to somewhere already thriving, rather than a place in need of the lift a firm like Amazon could provide.
global  future  economist 
october 2017 by JordanFurlong
The Happiest Graph on Earth - Stratfor Worldview
At the same time, renewable energy is already growing faster than total energy demand in China, leading the consumption of fossil fuels to fall by 1.4 percent in 2015. That year, China also accounted for 28 percent of global electric vehicle sales, 32 percent of solar panel installations and 47 percent of wind installations. In 2016 it overtook Europe in wind power, and by 2020 it will probably surpass the Continent in solar power, too.

Historians sometimes like to say that mastering coal allowed Britain to dominate the 19th century, and mastering oil allowed the United States to dominate the 20th. If mastering the wind and sun allows China to dominate the 21st, the happiest graph on Earth will keep getting happier — but at a terrible price for the West.
future  energy  global 
october 2017 by JordanFurlong
Tech Scene Pulls Firms to Pittsburgh, but Not Just for Clients
Pittsburgh's growing startup and technology scene is hardly a secret. And now it's drawing the eyes of large law firms across the United States, as they begin to notice what local firms have been tapping into for years.
Legal industry watchers in Pittsburgh say more large firms are likely to build outposts in the city, as they aim to be close to its research institutions and young talent pool, while potentially drawing in lateral hires from Pittsburgh whose practices fit well in a national or international platform.
"Pittsburgh is sort of uniquely positioned because of the lower overhead associated with practicing in Pittsburgh, as well as the growing and dynamic tech community," said Maura McAnney of McAnney, Esposito & Kraybill Associates, whose Pittsburgh-based legal recruiting business stands to benefit from the trend. "I do think more firms will begin to open up, mostly because there are so many Pittsburgh lawyers who have global practices."
global  it  robo  firms  future 
july 2017 by JordanFurlong
Cross-border deals now the norm
“Now, all deals are cross-border in the M&A field,” says Sharon Geraghty, who practises M&A with Torys LLP in Toronto. “It’s rare that you’re not hunting out buyers from other jurisdictions; and so we’re across the table from U.S. parties all the time, and they’re introducing as a result the trends and the concepts that they use to Canada . . . We’re also seeing Canadian players becoming much more active in the U.S.”
meritas  global 
july 2017 by JordanFurlong
Guest post: The Magic Circle is doomed. Here’s why. |
The combination of being squeezed in your own backyard and slogging expensively to try to gain purchase in New York creates a terrible asymmetry, and forces the MC into that thing all military strategists warn against: fighting a war on two fronts.

The obvious solution would be merger, and many MC partners have fantasised over the years about creating a transatlantic titan – Davis Polk and Freshfields was often touted, for instance.

But there are only two ways to do a transatlantic merger. Either you find a firm of equivalent gravitas – as Hogan Lovells and Norton Rose Fulbright seem to have done, broadly – or you subsume one into the other and let the legacy identity fade into history – Rowe & Maw, Richards Butler, Rogers & Wells and so on.

True merger is impossible for the MC. All the New York firms of the requisite quality and pedigree have nothing to gain by a 'merger of equals', and even if any of the MC firms would agree to be acquired – a scenario which I have difficulty imagining – we'd have Rogers & Wells: 2, in London, as the more powerful partner's identity took over and key teams headed for the door.

So organic it is. And this is where resources come into play, and where the US firms have an insurmountable advantage over their UK rivals, thanks, in large part to the US preoccupation with litigation, a problem which is magnified thanks, of all things, to the English Bar.

While successive UK governments have kicked the backside out of litigation in the UK, the US tort 'industry' continues to grow, pushing in excess of $300bn through the US legal system every single year, much of it going directly into the coffers of US law firms. To put that into context, that is larger than either the US agriculture or mining industries.
global  firms  litigation 
may 2017 by JordanFurlong
Comment: After shocks of 2016, law leaders may need to start thinking |
But political risk is something law firms will increasingly have to consider after a long period where the liberal, free market consensus was utterly dominant. The rise of populism, tribalism and the post-truth nature of public debate that burst into the open so spectacularly during 2016 has been building since the banking crisis, it is just that much 'mainstream' opinion assumed the old rules would soon re-assert themselves.

It is easy to see why comparisons are being drawn to the rise of authoritarianism and nationalism in the early 20th century after decades of liberal free-traders dominating the world.

This is a seismic shift in the ground upon which law firms built their businesses comparable to the realisation in the early 2000s that the post-Maastricht EU-integration play of leading law firms was not going to plan.
risk  global 
december 2016 by JordanFurlong
Wolfgang Munchau: Italy could bring down European Union
Chronic inability to separate the probable from the desirable has been the tragedy of 2016. Wishful thinking is becoming a threat to the survival of liberalism itself.
quote  global 
december 2016 by JordanFurlong
Is Globalization Sowing the Seeds of Its Own Undoing? | Stratfor
lobalization, he is saying, is sowing the seeds of its own undoing. By distributing its fruits so unevenly, globalization is driving wedges between upper and lower classes in the developed economies. In so doing, it is also driving further wedges between the lower classes in developed economies and the citizens of other nations, who are painted as enemies by populist demagogues.

The promise of free trade is undeniable: Everybody likes those everyday low prices. But the consequences of the differential distribution of the benefits of globalization are becoming disturbingly clear: For the upper classes, the world is their oyster. For the lower classes, the world is their competitor.

So what is to be done? Autor thinks protectionism would be a mistake. Instead he recommends, "'trade adjustment assistance' for affected workers. This idea has been an 'orphan' in policy circles, he says, adding that the current federal program is 'stingy.'"
global  future 
october 2016 by JordanFurlong
The Rise of a Not-So-New Elite | Stratfor
In the past 30 or 40 years, a postmodern Empire has been taking shape that has extraordinary similarities to the supposedly extinct Agraria. Whether this is something to celebrate or denounce remains an open, and complicated, question. On one hand, between the 1910s and 1970s the developed world saw falling income inequality, rising living standards, spreading democracy, expanding education, the decline of domestic service and the extension of full rights to women and many minorities; on the other, it also saw two World Wars and a nuclear standoff. Since the birth of the new Empire in the 1980s, by contrast, many of these positive trends have slowed or begun to reverse, but the world has also enjoyed unprecedented peace, witnessed groundbreaking technological advancement and seen its poorest billion people (mostly in Asia) lifted out of poverty.
global  future  elite 
october 2016 by JordanFurlong
Globalization Forever? | Adam Smith, Esq.
Manufacturers have learned (the hard way) that the “soft” costs associated with offshoring so much of their own supply chain are more substantial than anyone expected when the jobs were sluicing from North to South. It turns out that making products near your customers, and having design, engineering, and manufacturing under one roof, wasn’t such a terrible idea to begin with. (Before selling its household appliance unit, GE returned most of the manufacturing and all of the assembly work to its 1,000 acre “Appliance Park” facility in Louisville, KY.)
global  firms  recession 
september 2016 by JordanFurlong
Deloitte, Other Accounting Giants, See Legal Services Growth |
“Deloitte is focused on creating the premiere global law firm with the goal of realizing independent legal practices in over 100 countries by 2020,” up from 70 currently, a spokesman said.

Revenues have grown even faster. Deloitte’s legal services arm grossed 16.9 percent more this past year, continuing a six-year streak of double-digit growth. (The network declined to provide a dollar revenue figure for its legal unit.)

The three other professional services behemoths—Ernst & Young, KPMG and PricewaterhouseCoopers—release their fiscal year-end results later this month. All have recently announced pushes to grow their legal capabilities and expand into new markets. (PwC, which says it has more than 2,500 lawyers in 86 countries, would have ranked ninth on last year’s Global 100 list by head count, just behind Jones Day.)

Long known for offering tax and tax disputes legal services, the Big Four accounting firms are increasingly going after middle-market transactional and commercial work, as well as employment, immigration and tax law advice, depending on jurisdiction. They have mostly steered clear, however, of commercial litigation due to potential conflicts with their huge network of tax clients.

As The American Lawyer reported in July 2014, regulations limit the countries in which audit firms can provide legal services. The U.S. has remained off limits for the past decade. But their legal networks, which are structured as Swiss vereins, are almost everywhere else. And other important markets remain open.
accountants  global 
september 2016 by JordanFurlong
Skadden To Close Sydney Office Amid Australia Jitters | The American Lawyer
Skadden's retreat comes amid an extended slump in Australia’s mining industry, along with plunging commodities prices and increasing economic turbulence stemming from China’s contraction. Skadden declined to comment on the reasons for the office closure.
february 2016 by JordanFurlong
Consolidation is Hitting the Canadian Legal Market | Big Law Business
Anytime an American law firm announces a move into Canada, the locals sit up and take notice. When two American firms show up on the same day — one in the NewLaw space and the other in, well, OldLaw — then people like me start writing analyses like this, because something is definitely up.
jf  global 
january 2016 by JordanFurlong
Ogletree Deakins opens first office in Canada

An international labor and employment boutique has opened its first office in Canada with a group of lawyers from Gowling Lafleur Henderson.

A news release by Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart announcing its new Toronto office says only that it is “led by a group of prominent lawyers from a large Canadian law firm.”

However, new Toronto office managing partner Hugh Christie and another partner mentioned in the release both previously worked for Gowlings, according to its Web biographies, and Christie is a former national labor and employment practice group leader there.

“Canada is an important market for our firm, as many of our clients have operat
january 2016 by JordanFurlong
Japanese Law Schools Facing ‘Unprecedented Crisis’ - Law Blog - WSJ
Under the old system, you didn’t have to graduate from law school to become a lawyer in Japan, but had to pass an extremely difficult exam. Under the new system, a law degree was required. But it turned out that demand for lawyers and law degrees was much less than anticipated. And now, according to a new report, many of its government-subsidized law schools are shutting down or on the brink of closure.

“Law schools are now facing an unprecedented crisis,” writes University of Tsukuba researcher* Masahiro Tanaka in the Asian Journal of Legal Education. In 2004, the number of applicants to Japanese law schools was 72,800. In 2014, says Mr. Tanaka, the figure had fallen to 11,450.

Law schools were struggling so much that Japan adopted a new policy to reduce the number of schools. By April, only 54 schools were accepting students, he says. That number is likely to fall further.

Mr. Tanaka says the problem is that Japan’s legal job market didn’t grow fast enough, leaving many law school graduates with diplomas but no jobs. (Sound familiar?) But he writes abolishing the schools isn’t necessarily the right approach. He says schools should be more than just lawyer factories:
global  schools 
january 2016 by JordanFurlong
Adventbalance - Time for clients to ask "why are you here?" Strategic brilliance or herd mentality: why are the global law firms in Australia?
Clients need to sit down with their global providers and ask “why are you here?”

If your business is a domestic only player and your law firm’s strategy is to dedicate its resources to Chinese inbound investment then maybe you should move elsewhere.

So what is the answer to the question? Strategic brilliance or herd mentality?

In my view, both.

Without naming names it seems to me that a number of firms moved quickly, decisively and for the right reasons. Some others came because they were afraid of missing out. The firms who know why they are here and clearly communicate that to clients will succeed. The others will lose their shirt.
global  australia  firms  clients  purpose 
november 2015 by JordanFurlong
Dentons Ups the Ante in Global Growth Gamble | The American Lawyer
When Baker & McKenzie, the world’s current largest law firm, was the only one with offices in dozens of countries, its status was a big differentiator for multinational clients, said Jordan Furlong of Ottawa-based global law firm consultancy Law21. Now, he said, “we have lots of multinational firms, so having dozens of offices and thousands of lawyers isn’t enough to set you apart, and I’m not sure 80 offices and 8,000 lawyers will do it either.” 
firms  global  jf 
november 2015 by JordanFurlong
Listed law firms - any lessons for future wannabes? - Beaton Capital
Both Slater + Gordon and Shine offer strong insights into which aspect of law and what delivery model is appropriate for listing. Namely, high volume low value legal matters, which are primarily focused on the consumer or small business market (B2C) – not the corporate law or B2B legal market. The B2C legal market is characterised by strong processes and systems that churn matters efficiently with a high leveraged model of appropriately qualified lawyers and paralegals, under a corporatised management command and control structure. A far cry from the typical partner-associate-lawyer model, where there may be a leverage of 1:3 and professional motivation is not on efficiency but on intellectual and, more often than not, increasing the financial gain of the partner.
The overarching benefit that both Slater + Gordon and Shine promote is that they make legal services both accessible and affordable to the general public, this can be seen through their innovative fee structures, their use of technology and how they are consolidating within the legal services supply chain. Slater + Gordon’s proposed AUS$1.2billion UK acquisition of Quindell’s professional services division is a strong case in point, it will be earning revenue from every step in the process from ‘incident’ to ‘resolution’ – which goes far beyond the traditional definition of legal services. 
Another legal services firm listed on the ASX in November 2014, Spruson & Ferguson – an IP and patent attorney firm, now known as IP Holdings (IPH). This firm confirms the trend of applying technology, processes and systems to high volume low value legal matters, taking them outside the traditional partnership structure. Interestingly, IPH’s first acquisition was a technology company, acquired to increase its efficiency and effectiveness.
clementi  global 
april 2015 by JordanFurlong
Comment: A new model, a new game as US firms secure a decisive victory |
In contrast, firms like Ropes and Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan have had a very different playbook, and seen very different results. The investor/funds sensibility is, of course, in evidence in the high-impact London deals pulled off by Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld and Cooley that we assess, as is the avoidance of targeting general corporate work.
global  uk 
april 2015 by JordanFurlong
Doubts cast on Singapore legal liberalisation | News | Law Society Gazette
S giant’s ‘combination’ with a Singapore law firm does not necessarily pave the way for other foreign firms wishing to operate in the country, the Law Society has said.

Morgan Lewis, which says it is the largest law firm in the US by number of lawyers and one of the top five firms globally, announced this month that it had joined forces with Singapore’s Stamford Law Corporation to create what it said was the only fully integrated law firm in Singapore that can practise across all areas.

Morgan Lewis Stamford, as the firm will be known in Singapore, comes into being on 1 April.

At present foreign firms can establish in Singapore as a licensed foreign practice, qualifying foreign law practice, joint law venture/formal law alliance or representative office. They are required to obtain a licence from the attorney general to practise in permissible areas.
march 2015 by JordanFurlong
Mergers with non-legal firms may be on the horizon
But although such mergers were viewed as a long-term possibility, 67 per cent of firms surveyed indicated that mergers with accountancy practices, insurance companies or banks were not yet on the agenda.
global  australia  competition 
march 2015 by JordanFurlong
CBA National Magazine - Big law vs. new law
The Australian legal industry is in a state of flux as traditional full-service law firms jockey for position in a marketplace agitated by their upstart New Law competitors. 
global  newlaw  firms 
february 2015 by JordanFurlong
"The UK will continue to extend its reach across the world"
Yes, and for a number of reasons. UK law is ahead of the rest of the world as a legal market in that it adapts quickly. In that sense it’s ahead of any other market by a long margin, including the US, which is of course much larger than the UK. If anything, that innovation is accelerating, partly because of the impact of the Legal Services Act and the effect of its most liberalising element, Alternative Business Structures (ABS). The UK will continue to extend its reach across the world in terms of innovation in the global legal market.
firms  global  innovation 
september 2014 by JordanFurlong
Proof That ‘Bigg & Mediocre’ Has No Future « Above the Law: A Legal Web Site – News, Commentary, and Opinions on Law Firms, Lawyers, Law Schools, Law Suits, Judges and Courts + Career Resources
My mental category of “big and mediocre” doesn’t match Am Law’s “giant verein” group. To my eye, a few of the global giants have managed to pursue both size and quality. But several have not. (I can’t say publicly which firms I would place in which category, because my employer is the world’s leading insurance broker for law firms, and I can’t go around offending the clients and potential clients. Let me just say that your firm is great. Not just great — stupendous! But the other guy’s firm? Not so much.)
firms  global 
may 2014 by JordanFurlong
Why the Nike Alliance is a legal trendsetter | News | The Lawyer
Over the course of 18 months, more firms were brought into the alliance, agreeing to offer a flat-fee rate to Nike across the jurisdictions, as well as consistent working procedures. The alliance is managed from Amsterdam by a dedicated team and the firms get together to share information and best practice.

“We stay abreast of the latest developments in the legal field, as well as the relevant developments within the client’s company and its markets,” adds de Koning.

“Establishing a Nike Alliance means being able to retain the firms that most fit Nike’s needs in each jurisdiction, gaining efficiencies, driving convergence and increasing spend predictability. In addition, the Alliance for Nike is a powerful catalyst for our European legal team talent development,” European general counsel Fabrizio Mecozzi says.
pricing  global  firms  networks  clients 
march 2014 by JordanFurlong
PwC Legal chief: we can be a top 20 global legal services business in five years | News | The Lawyer
The head of PricewaterhouseCooper’s legal arm (PwC Legal) has set out the firm’s ambitions to become a global top-20 legal services player within the next five years.

PwC Legal global legal services leader Leon Flavell told The Lawyer that the firm was targeting revenues of $1bn - doubling from 2013’s almost-$500m across the firm’s legal offering - with particular growth earmarked for Asia and Africa.

“There’s a strong appetite among PricewaterhouseCoopers’ global network for significant investment in legal services,” said Flavell. “Our ambition is to become a leading global legal services business in terms of quality and quantity and both in each of the local markets and globally.”
accountants  competition  innovation  clementi  global 
march 2014 by JordanFurlong
LEGAL FUTURES Revealed: LegalZoom soft-launches in UK as Rocket Lawyer outlines plans for major growth » LEGAL FUTURES
Online giant LegalZoom – said to be the best-known legal brand in America – has soft-launched its UK service with the aim of giving consumers and small businesses “a smarter way to engage with a lawyer”, Legal Futures can reveal.
innovation  competition  global  clementi  robolawyer 
december 2013 by JordanFurlong
How the Magic Circle Lost the Battle for New York
Four of the five members of this elite club of U.K. firms—Allen & Overy, Clifford Chance, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, and Linklaters—have each had offices in New York for between 27 and 41 years, but they are still fighting just to make their presence felt. These pioneers came to America with grand intentions: not just to service the U.S. needs of existing clients, but also to compete head-on with the top Wall Street firms for the biggest-ticket transactional work—the sort of complex and cross-border deals for which the Magic Circle is known around the world. (The fifth Magic Circle firm, Slaughter and May, has generally eschewed international expansion in favor of a global alliance network that in the United States includes Cravath, Swaine & Moore and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz.)
november 2013 by JordanFurlong
The Canadian dilemma of King & Wood Mallesons | Right Inc.
However, King & Wood is a new kid. The firm was founded in Beijing in 1995 by some Chinese lawyers employed by the Ministry of Justice launched their firm three weeks after the private practice of law was approved. These lawyers trained in large American schools enrolled as clients of Chinese state companies such as Bank of China, PetroChina and China Life with a market capitalization of over $ 185 billion. This core founding partners has guanxi, a network of contacts and influence, one that opens the doors of all government offices. 's main partner is KWM Wang Junfeng who until 1995 headed the Department of Commercial Law Department of Justice. It is not only legal, but also a member of the National Committee of the Communist Party of China, a select group that holds most of the levers of political and economic power of the Middle Kingdom. This near Wang Junfeng and KWM of Chinese power is a double-edged sword. For some, this is a sure way to reach the most important Chinese makers. For others, the dual role of lawyer and politician rainmaker worried than he reassures. Certainly, despite its efforts KWM has not advanced in the Canadian case and the firm refused to make any comment about a merger or outright solo implantation of an antenna in Canada. Associate of the firm, however, can take comfort that there is still room for growth in their natural market. There are a lawyer by 265 people in the United States, 421 in Canada for a while in China a lawyer serves an average of 6,977 people.
china  global 
july 2013 by JordanFurlong
Why Linklaters won't go for an alliance in Canada | News | The Lawyer
Shocking as it may seem to someone viewing the world from the perspective of the Square Mile, but there are differences between Australia, South Africa and Canada, resources and energy opportunities aside.
global  mergers 
june 2013 by JordanFurlong
Consultancy model is ‘changing legal sector’ | Law & Constitution | BDlive
"While large law firms offer a good quality of service, their overheads make it almost impossible to keep their fees at levels that can easily be covered by even successful medium-sized businesses. Without having to help cover the overheads of a large law firm, consulting attorneys are able to charge significantly lower fees, while maintaining their personal income levels," she said. Membership of the network is free and consultants receive their full fee, as opposed to the small percentage they would receive for work done as an employee of a firm.
global  innovation  pricing 
may 2013 by JordanFurlong
SJ Berwin name poised to vanish as King & Wood merger vote looms | News | The Lawyer
SJ Berwin is gearing up for a vote on a global merger with Asia-Pacific firm King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) that would see the UK outfit’s name disappear.
merger  global  china 
may 2013 by JordanFurlong
Exclusive: China giant Yingke targets domestic SME market with launch of virtual legal services | News | The Lawyer
“We expect to have millions of new clients with the launch of Yingke Cloud. This is the opportunity for Yingke to become a real national legal services provider that not only services the needs of large corporate clients, but also individuals and small businesses,” said Mei. “We believe everyone has the right to justice and access to easy and affordable legal services.”
china  it  robolawyer  access  global 
may 2013 by JordanFurlong
Will ABSs be allowed to cross EU borders? | The Law Gazette
A report was published by the European Commission this week, keenly awaited by dedicated followers of European legal fashion. It gives important insights into lawyer cross-border mobility in Europe.
clementi  global 
may 2013 by JordanFurlong
Fixed-fee Australian boutique launches in Hong Kong - Legalweek
ounded in 2008 through a combination of Sydney's Advent Lawyers and Perth's Balance Legal, it now boasts offices in Sydney, Perth, Melbourne, Singapore and Hong Kong.
Unlike a typical law firm, it seconds senior lawyers to clients' offices for specific projects and transactions; agreeing a fixed payable amount for the period and hours involved.
With 100 lawyers in Asia Pacific, core practice areas extend across corporate and commercial, technology telecommunications and IP, banking and finance, regulatory and compliance, litigation, energy and resources and property and construction.
Managers believe their firm is growing quickly while traditional firms are struggling due to the decline of hourly rates and the rigidity of traditional partnerships.
innovation  global  pricing 
may 2013 by JordanFurlong
Due South | Features | The Lawyer
“We enjoy opportunities back and forth with Latin America, but it’s on a client by client basis. Our core focus is Canada and Canada continues to be a robust market for natural resources and mining,” says Brock Gibson, chair of Canadian firm Blakes. “For us, the recession was mild to non-existent. Although there was a slowdown in Canada because of constraints on capital we didn’t have the same experience as other traditional markets.
mergers  global 
january 2013 by JordanFurlong
Fasken Martineau makes big move into Africa - The Globe and Mail
Bay Street’s Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP is merging with a South African law firm in a move it says will cement its rank as the Canadian-based law firm with the most lawyers outside the country’s borders.
global  mergers 
october 2012 by JordanFurlong
LEGAL FUTURES Here come the Americans as Rocket Lawyer starts recruiting law firms » LEGAL FUTURES
Rocket Lawyer, the Google-Ventures backed online legal document service, has today launched its On Call programme into the UK, the first step towards the much-anticipated website going live to the public at the end of the year, Legal Futures can report.
competition  robolawyer  global 
august 2012 by JordanFurlong
Singapore to allow mergers between foreign and local firms | News | The Lawyer
Singapore’s parliament has passed amendments to its Legal Profession Act that will pave the way for foreign firms to merge with local firms and make it easier for foreign QCs to appear in Singapore courts.
february 2012 by JordanFurlong
Why Global Law Firms Are Perth-Bound
Situated on Australia's southwest coast and at the edge of the vast outback, Perth has long reveled in its image as the most isolated large city in the world. Yet Australia's fourth-biggest metropolis has lately become one of the hottest destinations for international law firms.
january 2012 by JordanFurlong
Functions of Law Society and Bar Council face reforms - The Irish Times - Wed, Oct 05, 2011
Other proposals include a legal costs adjudicator, who would lay out the basis for legal costs and provide for mediation or adjudication where they were disputed, and an independent body for complaints against barristers and solicitors. At the moment these are dealt with by disciplinary committees of the Bar Council and the Law Society, which have lay majorities.
clementi  global 
october 2011 by JordanFurlong
Ashurst, Blake Dawson Announce Merger Deal - The Asian Lawyer
The plan, which was approved by votes at both partnerships Friday, also calls for Blake Dawson to adopt the Ashurst brand in Australia as well as in the combined Asia offices. The integration of the Asian offices and the re-branding of Blake Dawson are scheduled to take effect March 2012, with a vote on a full merger envisioned roughly two years after that.
mergers  global 
september 2011 by JordanFurlong
LEGAL FUTURES » Top City lawyer targets Chinese and Indian law firms for ABS launch
Mr Kines said Chinese and Indian law firms have allowed foreign law firms “to dominate the representation of the Chinese, Indian and Asian businesses”, but that there are opportunities to “correct that balance” because they have a better understanding of such clients.

He said there is interest in doing this, and that a recent report for the Solicitors Regulation Authority – which reported that one of China’s largest law firms is to open in London shortly as part of a plan to create an ABS targeting Chinese investors to the UK with a one-stop shop of professional advisers – rang true.
china  india  clementi  global 
august 2011 by JordanFurlong
Egorov and Magisters merge to create CIS giant | News | The Lawyer
One of Russia’s largest law firms, Egorov Puginsky Afanasiev & Partners, is set to merge with Ukraine outlier Magisters.

The two firms signed the merger agreement today, following months of discussions. The deal will go live at the end of the year.

The tie-up will create a €115m-turnover firm, with more than 300 lawyers, including 27 partners, across offices in Astana, Kiev, London, Minsk, Moscow and St Petersburg.
global  mergers 
july 2011 by JordanFurlong
Leading Chinese and Australian Firms in Alliance Talks
U.K. publication Legal Week and sibling publication The Asian Lawyer report that Australian firm Mallesons Stephen Jaques and domestic Chinese firm King & Wood have been engaged in talks for the past several months. Bloomberg first had news of the discussions between both firms.
china  global 
july 2011 by JordanFurlong
LEGAL FUTURES » SRA reports “strong interest” from potential overseas investors in ABSs
They includes one of China’s largest law firms, which it said is planning to open an office in London in 2011 as part of a long-term plan leading eventually to the creation of an alternative business structure (ABS) targeting Chinese investors to the UK with a one-stop shop of professional advisers, including solicitors.
clementi  chinag  global 
july 2011 by JordanFurlong
Eversheds Eyes U.S. Presence and London Merger in Global Push
Eversheds is considering mergers in both London and the U.S. as part of an ambitious three-year strategy intended to reposition the law firm as a credible global player.
july 2011 by JordanFurlong
A Tale of Two Law-Firm Tiers: The Top 23 and All the Rest - Law Blog - WSJ
Aric Press, ALM’s editor in chief, offers this interesting piece about a pattern that became pronounced in FY 2010: a super-tier of 23 firms is starting to distance itself from the rest of the AmLaw 200 pack when it comes to profitability.

Average partner profits at the T-23 firms was $1.1 million higher than the average of the next 27 most profitable firms — a gap that has almost doubled in the last decade.
firms  global  future 
june 2011 by JordanFurlong
Law firms: A less gilded future | The Economist
All this took a toll on the labour market. After a dozen years of growth, employment in America’s law industry, the world’s biggest, has declined for the past three years (see chart 1). The 250 biggest firms, according to an annual survey by the National Law Journal, shed more than 9,500 lawyers in 2009 and 2010, nearly 8% of the total. Many also deferred hiring, leaving new graduates in a glutted market. Legal-process outsourcing firms, which do not advise clients but do routine work such as reviewing documents, put further downward pressure on the demand for their talents. The pain was felt in Britain, easily the biggest legal market after America, and other countries too.
firms  global  future 
may 2011 by JordanFurlong
Canada – a rocky ride? | News | The Lawyer
The first sign of stardom was last summer, when BHP Billiton, advised by Slaughter and May and Blake Cassels & Graydon, launched a $39bn (£23.97bn) hostile bid for Saskatchewan-based PotashCorp, represented by Jones Day and Stikeman Elliot.
mergers  global 
march 2011 by JordanFurlong
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