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India's largest law firm Fox Mandal Little has teamed up with the UK-based outsourcing firm Centric to launch an offshore outsourcing firm for Western law firms in the Indian capital.
Fox Mandal and Centric will join forces with India's Hinduja group to set up one of India's largest legal process outsourcing (LPO) firms. It will be based in New Delhi and is expected to launch later this month.
Fox Mandal international head Som Mandal told The Lawyer: "We anticipate that the LPO firm will start with at least 100 lawyers and should grow to around 2,000 over the next three years. Its main clients will be European and US law firms and in-house legal departments and it will provide services such as research, drafting and legal secretarial work."
Fox Mandal will provide the legal advice to all parties on the three-way joint venture, which will be known as Centric LPO.
The announcement of the venture follows closely last month's trip to India by the UK Joint Economic and Trade Committee's (Jetco) legal team (The Lawyer, 15 January).
Law Society of England and Wales international head Alison Hook, who was part of the Jetco contingent, told The Lawyer: "There appears to be a level of misunderstanding in some quarters in India. There are those who seem to think that legal outsourcing to India is alternative to foreign lawyers being present on the ground. This is not the case."
Pinsent Masons head of outsourcing and technology Clive Seddon said: "While it's early doors, no one can ignore the developments in the Indian outsourcing industry, otherwise law firms may struggle with their clients, who seek efficiency and innovation."