The Brief No. 3: When VC Meets JD

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August 29, 2018

This week, we're looking at litigation funding and how it has helped law firms respond to alternative fee arrangement requests. Has your department or firm used AFAs successfully in practice? We’d like to hear from you! Just hit reply to this email.

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When VC meets JD: Several legal tech startups are now flush with venture funding, but it wasn’t always that way. James Goodwin spoke with Hire an Esquire CEO, Julia Shapiro, about the past and future of legal tech investment. He argues the future of venture capital in legal won’t be limited to tech, the entire industry is ripe for investment, and the winners will be those who get in early.

Litigation funding is on fire: And so are new career opportunities for lawyers. Litigation funding companies Parabellum Capital and Burford Capital both added lawyers to their teams to keep up with growing demand. Litigation finance firms are staffing up with Biglaw talent to analyze risk and to decide which cases receive funding. In addition to changing the way firms do business, Litigation finance is further heating up the BigLaw talent war as it changes the way law firms do business.

Built by Blockchain, the legal career edition: Olga Mack reprises a previous article on Above the Law this week, about why lawyers should consider blockchain the new frontier in the legal industry. The sheer amount of money being invested into blockchain companies means “executives are wasting no time hiring lawyers early on in their company’s life cycle. They’re seeking to on-ramp their first lawyer to build and lead the function— a career building opportunity for attorneys with the right skill set.

For corporates, it’s cost + culture: At ILTACON 2018, in-house legal professionals from Microsoft, Starbucks, and Rackspace shed light on how they go about hiring outside counsel, and what they expect from these firms. The most important factors? Cultural fit, as well as flexible pricing.

Tomorrowlaw: Jeff Carr, newly appointed General Counsel of Univar, is joining forces with ElevateNext to build the ‘legal department of the future.’ Carr’s vision is “taking everything that an in-house legal department does and breaking it down to a series of processes that can be repeated,” and then offering a broad range of skill sets and services to deliver those to in-house clients. They hope to bring this model to other corporates, redefining the in-house law department as an executive function that is part of the executive team, with a focus on preventing problems.


Litigation Finance—A Disruptive Force in Law Firm Client Value: In this episode of JD Supra’s Strategies LIVE! podcast, Gretchen Lyn Koehler, Chief Marketing Officer at Benthem IMF, talks about how marketers and biz dev teams can use litigation finance as a tool for finding and developing new clients.


On the blog: Litigation Portfolio Funding
The newest trend in legal marketing, you can use portfolio financing to find new clients, develop existing business, and free up capital for your law firm’s operations.

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