The Thomson Corporation has acquired the US-based IT consultancy Baker Robbins & Co. The acquisition of Baker Robbins (BRCO) is described as 'a powerful complement to the Thomson portfolio of legal consulting services' which already includes Hildebrandt International.
David Hanssens, president of consulting services for Thomson, said acquiring Baker Robbins gives Thomson a depth of understanding of law firm and law department business processes and technology needs. “The legal industry today faces more complex challenges than ever before. Baker Robbins is recognized for its disciplined and innovative approach to technology consulting, and is trusted by many of the world's largest and most successful law firms and law departments for its insight and expertise to meet those challenges. Its unique insights into legal technology trends also give us a sharper perspective on the key issues confronting both inside and outside counsel and will be critical to shaping our overall customer and product strategies.”
Baker Robbins' co-founders David Baker and Brad Robbins, will continue to provide leadership for the firm, and consultants will support clients from Baker Robbins offices in Houston, San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and London. Baker Robbins is a private company and the terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.
So why have Thompson bought BRCO? It's clearly not – as some cynics have suggested – to have a consultancy that can recommend firms buy Elite for their next PMS. Thomson (and Lexis) want to own the desktop and to be able to deliver both the data (online legal info, books etc) and the tools with which that data is manipulated (CRM, PMS, Case etc). BUT they also need to invest in the skills to implement and integrate those systems, particularly on the KM where BRCO has a solid track record.