Another major law firm has entered the legaltech space, with Freshfields announcing a plan to develop innovative digital solutions to law services, based in the start-up hub in Berlin.
The move follows other firms like Slaughter & May’s recent development of a tech-driven attempt to disrupt the legal market.
The Freshfields news release about the legaltech development is below:
• New collaborative space to accelerate innovation;
• The Freshfields Lab is a core part of the Firm’s digitization strategy;
• The Lab’s first location in Berlin, a prominent centre for European start-ups, will sit at the heart of the Firm’s global Lab offering.
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP (‘Freshfields’) officially opened its first Freshfields Lab today in Berlin. The global law Firm is working collaboratively with clients in the space to develop technology-based solutions that tackle the challenges and opportunities stemming from digitization across the legal sector and clients’ own industry sectors.
Based in Berlin’s community of innovators known as the Factory Berlin, this is the first location for the Firm’s global Lab offering. Other locations are planned.
Today’s mass claims litigation, global investigations, cyber risk, and complex competition issues mean that clients need a combination of sophisticated legal advice and bespoke technology-based solutions. At the Lab, Freshfields combines its world class legal advice and technological expertise to improve its unique approach to client experience.
Commenting on the launch of the Freshfields Lab, Matthias Koch, partner and head of Freshfields’ Digital Advisory Board, said:
“The Freshfields Lab is a vital part of our response to the challenges presented by a fast-moving digital landscape, ensuring that we can continue to support our clients and transform our own business in the face of digitization. Legal Tech and digitization sit at the heart of our client offering. The Lab will further strengthen the Firm’s expertise in both areas, and will enhance the processes adopted to develop ideas and products.”
Initial client projects, focused on the development of bespoke technology-based products that can deliver better outcomes on large and complex matters, are underway at the Freshfields Lab.
The activities in the Lab are led by multidisciplinary teams, including Freshfields lawyers, client representatives in legal and IT roles, as well as external digital experts, software providers and academics. A number of Freshfields’ lawyers split their time between working on Lab projects and traditional client work, thus embedding the Lab approach across the Firm.
The Lab is led by Freshfields Counsel Gerrit Beckhaus and Felix Netzer as well as Chief Legal Innovation officer Isabel Parker.
The Lab forms a part of Freshfields’ digitization strategy and reflects its connected approach to innovation, which sits at the heart of the Firm’s global client offering. The space enables the Firm to collaborate with clients, while drawing on the combined power of people, processes and new technology, in order to drive innovation and develop new models for service delivery. The Lab is a further example of Freshfields’ approach to innovation, with past examples including the Firm’s associate intrapreneurship programme and the Freshfields Hub, which was formerly known as the Legal Services Centre.