Having teased the unveiling of a new name for the last few weeks, HBR Consulting, LAC Group, and Wilson Allen today (18 August) announced the launch of Harbor, an expert services provider across strategy, legal technology, operations, and intelligence.
Following the integration of the three companies and several key acquisitions, Harbor comes to market as a single entity serving law firms, corporations, and their law departments. With 650+ strategists, technologists, and specialists around the world, Harbor has also launched its new brand identity at its website, harborglobal.com.
Backed by private equity firm Renovus Capital, HBR Consulting, LAC Group, and Wilson Allen combined in late 2022 and in early 2023, the Chicago-headquartered company acquired Aurora North and Younts Consulting – teams specializing in legal tech applications and cloud migration. The integration efforts began in December, preceding further expansion with the addition this year of business process automation and AI-focused contracts intelligence specialist KP Labs.
The name Harbor has consonants borrowed from HBR and vowels from each of the other companies but is also said to represent a promise to clients, with global head of marketing and brand strategy, Kaye Sycamore, commenting in a statement: “We know that every enterprise is on a journey to realize its own mission. Along the way, it looks for safe harbor – for points of refuge, support, and resupply, which function as economic centers where value is added and knowledge is exchanged.”
Speaking to Legal IT Insider, Sycamore said: “This is not just a bigger HBR, or bigger Wilson Allen, it’s completely different from anything out there in the market. The difference is our ability to provide end-to-end solutions and we have spent months validating that with clients.
“We can provide advice and then follow it up with practical implementation to execute on that change, moving through to supporting our customers operationally.” She added: “The thing I find it hard to explain is the special way we have of working: Wilson Allen used to call it the Wilson way and HBR and Aurora had the same thing. It’s a way of building meaningful long lasting relationships with clients and having the insights that inform the advice we give the client, which enables us to work as part of their team and understand their technology and culture.”
In the run up to today’s launch the company internally has used the term OneCo, creating community site OneHub. While not all of its systems are yet integrated – it still has two finance systems and two CRM systems – it has reduced the number of systems and integrated the finance and talent department, with Sycamore predicting that by the end of the year it will have consolidated its systems entirely.
Sycamore said: “We want one seamless tech stack but the focus is always on the client. One area where we have invested in is our structure around account management and relationships, and those are integrated so that we have one view of every client and our relationship with them and how we engage.”
One of the ways that Sycamore says Harbor is different is the number of experts it has internally, and she comments: “Law firms are looking to tighten up their processes around risk and diversity and ESG and we have more people working for us in that part of the business than the top 30 firms have combined.”
As a combined entity, Harbor serves more than 80% of global 200 law firms, and 50% of the fortune 500.
You can find out more by watching Harbor’s videos here: