Legal IT movers: Ascertus, FTI Consulting, ClearCourse and QuisLex make senior hires

We have another round of legal tech movers and shakers for you on both sides of the Atlantic, as Ascertus, FTI Consulting and ClearCourse make senior hires in the UK and in the US, QuisLex appoints a new vice president of legal solutions. 

Leading iManage implementation partner and document lifecycle consultancy Ascertus has hired Nikec Solutions’ CEO Damian Jeal as its chief operating officer – a newly-created and public facing role. 

Jeal, who started on Monday (9 January) will be working closely with Ascertus founder and CEO Roy Russell and sales director Jon Wainwright. 

Jeal told Legal IT Insider: “I’ve known Jon and Roy for ages and they are continually growing and got to a point of needing someone else to come in and help drive that growth. I thought it was a good fit for me: I know a lot about document management and they are a huge iManage partner.” 

Jeal, who reports to Russell, added: “The role will be more visible to staff and clients and I’ll be a bit more of a face for the business. iManage are hugely dominant and we’ll be bringing on other solutions that complement iManage and are the right fit.” 

Jeal has been Nikec for over 20 years and said: “It was time for a new challenge. This will be good for me and for Ascertus, and I’ll always have an interest in Nikec and what they do.” 

Elsewhere, New York stock exchange advisory firm FTI Consulting announced yesterday (10 January) that its technology segment has appointed Sam Davies as a managing director in London, a hire that is said to bolster the ongoing global expansion of its blockchain and digital assets practice.  

Prior to joining, Davies was director of global innovation at EY, serving as both the global product and platform lead and the UK blockchain lead.  

Interestingly, Davies has an academic background, with master’s degrees in computer science and engineering from the University of Birmingham and the University of Leeds, and he is working towards a PhD in machine learning at the City University in London. We’re told that he holds multiple patents in user interfaces for multimedia archives, audio analysis for sports events and emotion extraction from text.  

“Clients are grappling with a range of questions and challenges as they consider how to move forward with their blockchain projects and investments,” said Steven S. McNew, a senior managing director and global leader of blockchain and digital assets at FTI. “They often need support understanding and navigating highly technical concepts to make strategic decisions and follow-through on implementation plans. Sam brings a wealth of technical and technology development expertise to our team, which will be integral to helping our clients ideate on blockchain opportunities and build the infrastructure needed to support them.”   

Also in the UK, LexisNexis’ commercial director for EMEA and APAC, Steve Zangari has joined ClearCourse as division director for membership services. ClearCourse is a software and payments business founded in 2018 with investment from New York and London-based private equity firm Aquiline. It provides 30 different software solutions to small and medium-sized enterprises. 

And leading US alternative legal services provider QuisLex has hired legal discovery expert Brian Corbin from JP Morgan Chase. Corbin joins QuisLex as vice president of legal solutions and operational excellence. Based in Berlin, Germany, Corbin is taking on a hybrid role building both business development and operational functions to support QuisLex’s growing global legal solutions business.   

Corbin said: “As a longtime believer in the offshore model for modernizing legal processes, I’m excited to climb aboard with an organization that has such a stellar reputation for outstanding quality and innovative approaches to solving problems. 

“This team’s ability to deliver solutions to highly complex legal challenges, at scale, is nothing short of transformative for its clients, and I’m grateful to be a part of it here in Berlin.” 

“Macroeconomic factors are increasingly driving in-house legal departments to rely on managed service providers for an array of support, creating new opportunities for expansion,” added QuisLex COO Sirisha Gummaregula. “We are thrilled to have found the right person in Brian to help grow our global business.”  

Prior to joining JPMC in 2013, Corbin oversaw the delivery of legal services at Clutch Group (acquired by Morae Global) in Bangalore, India, and before that practiced at the law firm of Covington & Burling LLP in Washington, D.C., working primarily with Fortune 500 clients in the financial services, pharmaceutical and technology industries.  

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