GowlingWLG’s innovation and digital head Derek Southall and legal tech stalwart has left the partnership to launch Hyperscale Group, through which he will advise in-house legal teams and software companies on their innovation and digital strategies but will continue to work with GowlingWLG three days a week.
Southall, who left the GowlingWLG partnership at the end of April, became head of innovation and digital in May 2016, having previously been head of strategic development at the international firm. He has been responsible for driving the firm’s digital strategy including focusing on cognitive computing and AI, knowledge management, input to business information systems strategy and supporting client delivery, new delivery models, client consultancy and strategies in relation to market changes.
The new arrangement will see him continue in that role three days a week through Hyperscale, giving him the freedom to take on independent projects.
Southall told Legal IT Insider: “We’re seeing a massive demand from clients, who are transforming what they do and there are big opportunities there,” adding, “The startup market also needs help.
“The plan is that I can do different things. I’m going to see what the nature of the demand is. There is nothing to stop me employing a team of 10 people.” While Southall has had very few conversations while he was still a partner at GowlingWLG, he is currently in talks with a startup in the travel industry.
Southall says the three days working for GowlingWLG will be an ongoing arrangement, commenting: “Do I think there will be a bit of cross over? I think there probably will. There’s been no dialogue but the firm’s pretty open minded. As yet, we don’t know where this will go.”
Southall’s existing GowlingWLG contact details will remain unaltered but his new contact details are: firstname.lastname@example.org and +44(0)7980 125125 and +44(0)333 772 2255