At least one top City firm is known to be "seriously looking" at a new system from Wang following the troubled company's efforts to relaunch itself in the UK's legal market

Simon Rogers

At least one top City firm is known to be "seriously looking" at a new system from Wang following the troubled company's efforts to relaunch itself in the UK's legal market.

Wang UK has also signed a deal with supplier Dart Legal Systems to market its Australian ALS practice management system.

Although the law firm is not thought to be contemplating Dart at the moment, it is expected to be looking at Wang's latest networking products.

Dart, run by ex-ACE salesman Geoff Morris, will work with Wang UK's networking department to sell the ALS product, which is a success in the Australian legal market.

ALS is designed by lawyers and is Microsoft-compatible. Designed as an 'open system', it is written in a universal version of programming language 4GL. As an integrated accounts system, it can run on Unix, NT advanced servers and Netware.

Morris says the system will be successful in the UK. "It is mirroring what is happening in Australia," he says. "The concept of ALS is that it becomes as important to fee earners as the telephone on their desk."

Wang is one of the oldest legal suppliers in the UK. However, restructuring in the US, where the parent company was under Chapter 11 protection from US creditors, combined with a move away from proprietary systems, effectively blighted its association with top UK law firms.

Wang set up a transfer service, which provides consultancy services for firms looking to move from their old Wang VS systems to PC networks.

Earlier this year it signed a deal with supplier Bull, designed to reinforce the comp-any's new global presence.

Society for Computers & Law chair and legal consultant, Neil Cameron, says the company may find it difficult to regain legal customers. "Like any market, it's not just product quality that counts. It is perceived image and commitment to the market." he says.

But Wang networking business unit manager,Tim Carter, says the company will be able to get back into the UK legal market. "We've come out of Chapter 11 really well. We are now revisiting our major accounts and helping them with their products."