Associate editor Caroline Hill reports... Westfield’s London-based in-house legal team has signed a deal with NetDocuments to implement its cloud-based software-as-a-service (SaaS) document management system (DMS), the Legal IT Insider has learned.

The 14-strong Westfield team, which has an external legal spend of around £7m to £10m a year and is led by European general counsel Leon Shelley, undertakes most of Westfield’s legal work connected to shopping centres including Stratford and Shepherds Bush. The new outsourced DMS replaces an old Hummingbird (now OpenText) system and Shelley told the Insider “We had a very old version of Hummingbird that needed a lot of support. This blows the door on our old system and can function as an extension of our law firms.”The rest of the Westfield business now uses SharePoint but Shelley explained: “We’ve always kept up with technology and I asked the guys from NetDocuments to come in. Legal are the only people who are allowed it so far.”

Westfield’s legal team conducts most of its work in-house, relying mainly in the UK on Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, SJ Berwin (now King & Wood Mallesons) and Ashurst for any tax, corporate real estate and property work it can’t undertake itself. The legal team is looking to grow and is currently hiring its first lawyer outside of London in Milan, in preparation for work on the new Westfield Milan centre.