A raft of new partnerships and deals has seen document automation specialist BamLegal led by Catherine Bamford enter a partnership with startup legaltech business Wavelength as Vissensa signs a multiyear agreement with the International Bar Association and Howard Kennedy rolls out Linetime Liberate’s case management system.

Elsewhere, five-office Somerset and Dorset practice Pardoes has signed up with DPS Software, while we also bring news of the launch of new eDiscovery provider Cognicion; a partnership between Nuix and FRONTEO USA; and the new business stats from Ascertus. In other news, free conveyancing portal Free2Convey now integrates with any case management system, while less is more on the new appointment front as NextLaw Labs hires its first chief technology officer, Dean Khialani.

New ventures and deals

BamLegal, a leading legal document automation and workflow specialist founded by former Pinsent Masons lawyer Catherine Bamford, has entered into a strategic partnership with new commercial law firm and legal tech business, Wavelength.law.

Wavelength delivers technology and data led contract management solutions alongside its commercial legal services.

The new collaboration, which follows Bamford’s appointment as a non-executive director of Wavelength, will use legal technology, data analytics, contract automation, “living” playbooks, machine learning and artificial intelligence solutions in order to provide responsive services to law firms, in-house legal teams and other business departments.

Bamford said: “Clients often ask BamLegal to help them take their legal document automation to the next level…By partnering with Wavelength, we can now offer these full intelligent solutions to our clients.”

Vissensa has signed a multiyear agreement with the IBA to host and support key aspects of the IBA’s computer infrastructure in one of its highly secure UK data centres.

The project included the migration of the IBA’s existing computer equipment to the new data centre location and included the introduction of cloud-based local and remote backup solutions to support the growing user community within the IBA supported by Vissensa.

John Shrives, IT development manager for the IBA commented “We felt that Vissensa was very familiar with physical and virtual infrastructure migration, and it was clear that they understood the nature of our business and how a big move such as the one we were contemplating needed a depth of experience, structure and a strong ethos of partnership with the IBA team to ensure the project’s success.”

Fast growing London law firm Howard Kennedy’s residential and plot sales team has implemented Linetime’s Liberate case management system.

Led by IT director Clive Knott, the firm looked at a number of different options including a bespoke system but were swayed by Linetime’s track record, which would allow for a more aggressive implementation schedule.

Howard Kennedy, which has merged three firms over the last two years and relocated to new premises in 2015 at No.1 London Bridge, will initially use Linetime’s Liberate system to manage all aspects of developments, associated plots and associated documents and milestones.

Once the core workflows have been implemented the Howard Kennedy team are looking forward to a second phase, which will see further efficiency gains as a result of integrating the Liberate case management system with the existing Elite practice management. The second phase will see the implementation of Linetime’s client portal software, allowing clients to access their own cases, case histories and associated documentation.

Pardoes Solicitors, a large Somerset and Dorset regional practice with five offices, has implemented DPS Software’s practice management solution.

Previously the firm’s PMS was from one supplier, digital dictation from another and case management from a third, with hosting including Word and the Microsoft office suite from yet another supplier. 

DPS was chosen as it provides a fully integrated solution for every department through its own dpscloud platform for a single monthly fee.

Guy Adams, managing partner said, “Managing servers, desktops, software and the increasing amount of security we have to implement is a real headache we did not need. We know we need IT to do our work so we can strive forward and do our best without worrying about technology.”

New eDiscovery solutions provider Cognicion LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of U.S. law firm Hunton & Williams, has launched to offer corporations, law firms and other legal entities “an array of digital legal support using cutting-edge technology.”

Cognicion is being led by president and CEO Spencer Cosper, who served for 15 years as the national sales director of Deloitte’s forensic investigations and litigation support practice.

In addition to Cosper, Cognicion’s key members include chief operating officer Lorraine Venesky, who was a leader in the document review services practice within Deloitte Discovery, and chief revenue officer Chris McDaniel, who brings a 22-year career centered on automated litigation support and eDiscovery.

“The litigation practice at Hunton & Williams values Cognicion’s cost containment and predictability philosophy and so do our clients,” said Samuel A. Danon, litigation team head.

Global technology company Nuix has announced a partnership with FRONTEO USA (formerly UBIC North America, Evolve Discovery, and Techlaw Solutions) a leading provider of international litigation support and big data analysis services.

FRONTEO will use Nuix to support high-end eDiscovery and digital evidence processing, enhancing its ability to handle increasingly larger data sets and support the growing processing demands from its clients.

“The main contributing factor to enable this partnership was literally our speed and scalability,” said Eddie Sheehy, CEO of Nuix. “The Nuix processing engine gives our partners and customers the ability to work through massive amounts of data at speed and scale to produce accurate, timely results.”

In addition to speed and scalability, Nuix compatibility with multi-language support in FRONTEO products, particularly Chinese, Japanese, and Korean (CJK) character sets, was a deciding factor in the selection of Nuix.

Ascertus, which provides information and document lifecycle management solutions to professional services organisations and corporate legal departments, has announced that in the first six months of 2016 it has grown its new customer base by 15%; organically increased business with existing customers by 25%; opened a new sales office in Bournemouth; increased the size of its sales, support services and technical teams; and entered into new partnership agreements with technology suppliers.

Its partnerships include digital signatures software provider, DocuSign; template management solutions provider, Iphelion; and e-billing and legal spend management software provider, BusyLamp.

“This is an exciting time for Ascertus and we are most certainly on an upward trajectory. Organisations of all sizes and across industry sectors are recognising that document management is core to many of their larger business initiatives such as digital transformation, collaboration, storage and cloud technology adoption,” said Jon Wainwright, sales and marketing director of Ascertus.

Product launches and upgrades

Free2Convey, the free online conveyancing portal, now enables integration with multiple case management systems (CMS), in a move it says is set to revolutionise conveyancing transactions in England and Wales.

Free2Convey will enable all the parties in a conveyancing transaction to see, for the first time, the progress of their chain from instruction to post-completion, which is available to view in real time through one portal.

Matt Lancaster, sales and marketing director and one of the founding partners of Free2Convey, said: “In today’s world of real time communication law firms and their clients, and estate agents all require a collaboration tool that allows them access to real time information at all times regardless of what computerised system they use. 

“We’re now in a position where our live product is available to use with various options for integrating with a law firm’s case management software and its current business processes.”

Free2Convey plans to launch secure document exchange capability later this year.

People and places

In the United States, Dentons’ innovation and technology investment arm Nextlaw Labs has hired Dean Khialani as its chief technology officer. In this role, Khialani will oversee development and expansion of all of the company’s technology products designed for legal professionals.

Previously, Khialani served as senior vice president of information technology at The Excelium Group, spearheading the launch of systems that supported the streamlining of matter management and litigation financing for the company’s legal subsidiaries. His career has also included positions at International Education Corporation, Education Training Corporation, LoudCloud Systems, Fischler School of Education & Human Services, and Nova Southeastern University, where he is completing a Ph.D. in Information Systems.

“I’m honoured to be joining the Nextlaw Labs team, and I am eager to bring my experience in IT for educators and professionals,” said Khialani. “Nextlaw Labs is taking bold steps to provide next-generation IT solutions for the legal profession.”