Allen & Overy hires Deloitte’s Richard Punt as new CEO of contract lawyer business Peerpoint

Allen & Overy has appointed Richard Punt, formerly managing partner of growth and markets for Deloitte, to lead its contract lawyer business.  

Richard Punt will be heading the firm’s contract lawyer business, which allows Allen & Overy (A&O) to increase its permanent workforce at times of high demand or when there is a need for particular specialist skills, the firm announced today.

Punt has joined Peerpoint from Deloitte, where he was a managing partner of growth and markets for over three years. He worked for Deloitte for over 18 years in total as part of the strategy consulting business.

Punt’s focus on business development and strategy will allow COO Ben Williams to focus on the operations side of Peerpoint, which now has a team of 30 people in London, five people based in Hong Kong and two in Australia.

Global managing partner Wim Dejonghe told The Lawyer that A&O tested Peerpoint with several specific clients in the financial sector based in the UK and in other projects throughout the year.

”We have started, tested, worked with a couple of clients and made sure we have got what they want. The client demand is definitely there,” he said. 

Dejonghe added that the firm had then gone on to work with several other clients successfully; something that is likely to lead to further hires in the upcoming months.

”The main focus after this will be recruiting lawyers,” he commented. ”The idea is really to be wherever there is demand to set it [Peerpoint] up.”

On Punt’s hire, Dejonghe said: “Securing someone of Richard’s calibre is a real coup for the business. It shows the scale of our ambition for Peerpoint and our commitment to investing in alternative delivery models for our clients.”

Research conducted by Allen & Overy earlier this year pointed at 63 per cent of respondents said they have used contract lawyers in the past two years, while three-quarters (74 per cent) said they expect to use contract lawyers over the next five years.