BT’s Tikit to the legal market

The IT director of one top 20 firm today admitted he was “shocked” by BT’s acquisition yesterday of legal technology provider Tikit.

‘Shocked’, because comparatively this is a tiny company (it was a £64.2m deal) being acquired by a monolithic giant. What’s the plan, he wondered?

Well, neither BT nor Tikit are saying much outside the usual post-deal platitudes, though Gavin Patterson, chief executive officer of BT Retail hinted at the real strategy when he said the acquisition would let the telecoms company, combine Tikit’s expertise, portfolio, relationships and deep understanding of the legal sector with BT Retail’s scale and breadth of products.

In other words, BT has just bought itself a Trojan Horse, one that currently services more than 90 of the UK’s top 100 law firms, and can now fill it with sales leads to data centres, new networks and the whole range of the company’s products.

Where that will leave these clients if they now have to migrate from working with Tikit’s customer services to BT’s occasionally over-bureaucratic approach to offering a helping hand is anybody’s guess.

Elsewhere in this issue of The Lawyer Management you can check out how diverse your firm or chambers is thanks to the launch yesterday of the Black Solicitors Network’s annual diversity survey.

You’ll also find a link to the TLM interview with the deputy chief operating officer of Edwards Wildman in this week’s The Lawyer plus the latest round-up of operational news, including the Law Society’s anti-money laundering tool kit.

Matt Byrne