At a time when AI is the talk of the town, it might seem counter-intuitive to put people at the centre of things, especially for a firm that’s won awards for technology innovation in the legal sector, but that’s exactly what Lighthouse Law has done. The combination is working exceptionally well for them and their clients.
Lighthouse Law encompasses several business lines including traditional and alternative legal services through Lighthouse, legal tech through LightHub, and legal ops and procurement consulting through Beacon. The golden thread being their approach to innovation and the high quality of legal services running through them all. These services are offered from South Africa to clients in the UK, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, with people at the centre of the solution and with price certainty as the keystone of the commercial proposition.
In this podcast, Justin Cornish, CEO of Lighthouse, explains the rationale behind establishing Lighthouse in South Africa and highlights the wealth of South African talent with international expertise that they have been able to recruit. This has positioned the firm to "provide a top-quality service to clients looking for a more cost-effective approach to legal services". As an example, Cornish notes that “the M&A space is ripe for this kind of disruption. Big Law clearly still dominates, but, certainly in mid-market private equity deals, there are great opportunities to explore alternative models for providing the services that both acquirers and sellers need in a transaction.”
Beacon, Lighthouse’s legal ops and procurement consultancy service offering, focuses on building long term relationships with their clients. “We’re not a firm that has a thousand clients with limited ad hoc instructions; we are a firm that works closely with clients to build strategic and enduring relationships. A big part of it is understanding the business and the commercial imperatives of that organisation to know how best our legal team can support them. Beacon allows us to build this understanding at the outset, enabling our managed legal services solution to take care of much of the ‘churn work’ in-house lawyers have on their plates each day,” Cornish said. Lighthouse effectively implements solutions that free up capacity and increase the strategic value an in-house lawyer provides to its business.
Cornish is known for his extensive activity on technology and outsourcing transactions, and Lighthouse's utilisation of data and technology places them as one of the innovation leaders in this arena. “We are certainly tech-forward as an organisation,” Cornish noted. “We’ve developed our own tech and we explore the market for tech that can enable us to provide better services to our customers all the time.”
LightHub, the firm’s award-winning legal tech offering, is also a leader in contract management innovation, providing a wealth of valuable legal know-how, logical legal repositories, as well as easy-to-use legal dashboards to track workflow and analyse data, all in a way that helps in-house teams make informed and data-based decisions about how to work more efficiently and where best to deploy resources.
Cornish is especially proud of the Lighthouse Academy, which offers mentorship, training and skills development programs for BBBEE law graduates in South Africa. He says while transformation is itself a noble cause, Lighthouse wanted to make a tangible difference by enabling its Academy graduates to access quality legal opportunities in the legal sector – all in the context of very high unemployment rates – and they have some real success stories.
Find out more about this initiative, as well as how the firm is priming itself to remain competitive in the increasingly borderless business landscape, by listening to the podcast here.
To join Africa Legal's mailing list please click here