Bowmark Capital, the mid-market private equity firm, is backing the buy-out of LOD (Lawyers On Demand), the fast-growing alternative legal services provider, from Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (BCLP).
“This is all about access to capital for our next stage of growth,” comments LOD CEO Tom Hartley. “We have been exploring alternative options since the summer of 2017 following our successful merger with AdventBalance in Asia and Australia in 2016.”
Neville Eisenberg, BCLP Partner responsible for LOD, said: “BCLP is extremely proud to have been a pioneer in the alternative legal services market. Nurturing the creation of LOD over 10 years ago, and supporting its growth and considerable influence over the legal market as a high quality provider of flexible legal services, has been an extraordinary journey for us all. We believe that LOD is ideally placed for further growth and that this new investment by Bowmark will help facilitate LOD’s ambitious plans. BCLP has committed to remain close to LOD, partnering with the business for its flexible lawyer needs and we look forward to seeing the results of this exciting new chapter in LOD’s development.”
Bowmark Managing Partner Charles Ind said: “We have been tracking the alternative legal services sector for a number of years and are delighted to have the opportunity to become the principal shareholder in LOD and support the whole LOD team as they build on the impressive growth they have achieved to date.”
Hartley adds, “BCLP has been a great owner, client and partner and this is the logical next step for us to take. LOD has already been a separate entity from BCLP for the last six years, during which time we’ve seen excellent growth. We want to maintain that expansion by continuing to add new service lines, geographies and technology to our existing offering for our lawyers, consultants and clients. LOD is now in the perfect position to continue to lead the alternative legal services market supported by the capital and expertise of Bowmark.”
New Australian Managing Director
Earlier this month, LOD announced that Sandra Gibson, who held the position of Australian Managing Director for the past 5 years, will take on a new global role of Head of People and Corporate Operations and will be based in LOD’s London office from October.
Tom Hartley, LOD Chief Executive said, “Sandra has taken the Australian business from strength to strength and has understood the opportunities and challenges for a NewLaw firm in a changing legal landscape. We are fortunate to bring Sandra’s experience and leadership to London.”
Gibson says of her new role, ”LOD, first and foremost, is about people. In creating this new global role, we are demonstrating our ongoing commitment to attracting and retaining the very best people. My priorities will be to build on our innovative people strategies and to facilitate the sharing of best practices across our diverse geographic and cultural locations. I am very excited at the opportunity to drive our global growth in an area so fundamental to our success.”
Paul Cowling, Australia’s Head of Client Solutions, will move into the Managing Director Australia role to lead the innovative law firm’s business strategy across the country from 1st May.
Prior to joining LOD’s predecessor firm AdventBalance in 2014, Cowling practiced as a commercial disputes lawyer in the UK and Hong Kong and has held management and operational roles at leading legal resourcing and legal process outsourcing businesses.
Hartley said, “Paul has a dedicated and personal approach to his clients and a real interest in finding solutions for them. He has played a key role in building, growing and driving the firm’s client solutions capability and strategic client partnerships across Australia and has a deep understanding of the LOD business.”
Cowling said, “It is such an exciting time for the business and I am thrilled to be appointed as MD for Australia. LOD creates great opportunities for lawyers and clients to work in more flexible and unique ways and I look forward to playing a key role in that in the next phase of our growth”.
The merger between AdventBalance in Asia and Australia and LOD in the UK has created one of the world’s largest and fastest growing NewLaw businesses with global scale: ten offices, over 600 lawyers, and more than 500 corporate and law firm clients.