In one of the biggest turnarounds in recent years, Microsoft today announced it was closing down its Redmond-based specialist legal vertical market team with immediate effect. Jobs are being lost including Norm Thomas, who has been the public 'face' of Microsoft legal and professional services for a number of years. At this stage it is too soon to know what impact this will have on some of Microsoft's legal sector projects, including the Sharepoint DMS and native Word redlining initiatives at Clifford Chance. It is expected that the announcement will also see Microsoft cutting back on legal-specific sponsorship, marketing and events activities.

This is the text we received from out contact at Microsoft – we wish the staff well for the future…

“Today we learned the disheartening news that Microsoft are closing its Legal & Professional Services sales teams entirely, effective immediately, and everyone associated will no longer be with the company after Friday.”