Morning Briefing: Law firms investing big money in business development

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Law firms investing big money in business development
Law firms are investing millions of dollars to grow their business according to a survey of US firms. Almost half of respondents (42 per cent) say they are spending between US$5 and $10 million on staff, resources and technology. The poll by outsourcing firm LAC Group also found that 80 per cent of law librarians say that their research work has increased in the last three years with 60 per cent outsourcing work as a result.
The survey identified three key requirements for law librarians and marketing departments; the need to add value including proactively sharing ideas and knowledge with practice departments; the need to reduce costs which is leading to greater centralisation of libraries and their movement to lower cost locations; the need for synergised roles with the old days of working in silos being replaced.
New managing partner for international firm in Doha
The Doha practice of Squire Patton Boggs has a new managing partner from this month. Effective Oct. 1 Charbel M. Maakaron will lead the team succeeding Susan B. Bastress who established the office in 2003 and has served two separate terms as managing partner. Bastress will return to Washington DC as a real estate partner.
International law firm helps ex-offenders into work
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has won an award in recognition for its work to help ex-offenders and those from disadvantaged backgrounds into the workplace. The accolade was awarded by the Lord Mayor of London. The law firm offers up to four week’s experience for those who may find getting work experience difficult and partner Philip Richards says it is a different view of the legal profession, which is often seen as elite and privileged and out of the reach of the people the firm welcomes. He told the Law Society Gazette: ‘When ex-offenders are willing to work and have the relevant skills to offer, businesses need to take the lead in creating opportunities.’
Tech giants choose agreement rather than litigation
Two of the world’s biggest tech firms have finally come to an agreement over a patents dispute which has been ongoing since 2010. Microsoft and Google were locked in a battle over 18 patent issues including those relating to smartphones and wi-fi. In a statement the two firms say that they have ended litigation over some matters and that: "Separately, Google and Microsoft have agreed to collaborate on certain patent matters and anticipate working together in other areas in the future to benefit our customers."