Norton Rose Fulbright sets out plans to establish Newcastle legal hub

Global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright has announced plans for further expansion with the opening of a Legal Process Hub in Newcastle’s iconic Quayside, creating around 100 new jobs locally over the next 2-3 years.

Recognized for its industry focus, Norton Rose Fulbright is strong across all the key industry sectors: financial institutions; energy; infrastructure, mining and commodities; transport; technology and innovation; and life sciences and healthcare.  The law firm which employs more than 4,000 lawyers and other legal staff based in Europe, the United States, Canada, Latin America, Asia, Australia, Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia, plans to extend its operations in Newcastle, strengthening the regions position for attracting foreign investment.

The firm has been running a Legal Process Hub in the city for over a year, as a pilot project. The Legal Process Hub currently employs a team of 28, which consists of lawyers, non-lawyers, paralegals, legal technologists and process designers. This number is set to increase following the transition to the new premises, effective November 1, 2017.

The Legal Process Hub delivers legal process efficiencies, trials the use of new innovative legal technology and collects and analyses data for research for the benefit of clients and the firm.
Norton Rose Fulbright has agreed a 10 year lease with Northumberland Estates for the Quayside premises and is making the move following several meetings and city-led guidance from Invest Newcastle, a service delivered by Newcastle Gateshead Initiative on behalf of Newcastle City Council. The team at Invest Newcastle worked with Norton Rose Fulbright to provide business context and introductions within the local business community alongside a location scouting service.

Martin Scott, managing partner of Norton Rose Fulbright, Europe, Middle East & Asia, said “We’re pleased by the support we’ve received locally with the setup of the Legal Process Hub. There are a number of reasons as to why Newcastle is ideally placed for Norton Rose Fulbright, including access to a strong pool of local talent that is able to support our efforts globally, and the city’s strong and growing reputation for innovation and technology. Expanding the team outside London also allows us to trial emerging technology and working practices, including agile working, in a structured way”

“We continue to invest in people, processes and technology to provide a creative working environment, which differentiates and improves the services we can provide to our clients. The Legal Process Hub approaches legal work in a new way and is developed as a centre of excellence with a range of capabilities, which can be flexed and deployed either to support our internal teams in delivering a component of a service to clients, or to deliver a client service in a new and dynamic way. Our investment in technology, as well as artificial intelligence and machine learning will be a growth enabler to drive process efficiencies both at the Hub, and as part of how we deliver legal services generally.”

Pat Ritchie from Newcastle City Council said “Newcastle is a business friendly city with good transport connections and a talented workforce. It is also a growing centre for technology, creative and professional services. I very much welcome the decision by Norton Rose Fulbright to invest in the City, which will see the creation of new jobs. This commitment underlines Newcastle’s ability to retain and attract high quality employment and bolsters our efforts to create a strong and diverse economy.”

Catherine Walker, Director of Inward Investment at Invest Newcastle, said “We’re delighted Norton Rose Fulbright has chosen Newcastle as the long term base for their Legal Hub. The move further strengthens the professional services sector operating out of Newcastle. What’s more, the work coming out of the Legal Process Hub chimes with the City’s status as a leader in new technology for business. As a ‘smart city’, Newcastle continues to drive forward its status as an innovative northern City with a compelling offer for national and global business.”



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