Lastminute.com has asked three firms to pitch for its general commercial work to support its three-lawyer in-house function.
The holiday and leisure dotcom, which has an annual turnover of £1.5bn and more than 10 million website subscribers, already has an historic relationship with Herbert Smith, which handles the company’s M&A corporate work.
Lobo said: “Ideally I’d love to keep the work in-house, but I just can’t do it. There’s not enough of us. I’m not averse to other firms pitching, but I’m looking for a small outfit with a technology focus.”
The first task for the successful firm will be to help create and roll out a set of standardised contracts.
Lastminute.com’s in-house team is handling the company’s integration with parent Sabre Holdings and 14 subsidiary companies that it acquired in 2005. Sabre, the US internet travel giant, purchased lastminute.com in 2005 for $1bn (£570.1m).
Lastminute.com’s legal team is also restructuring the company’s European operations in France, Spain and Italy, which currently have autonomous legal functions.