New technology-driven law firm aims to shake up Scotland's professional services market



A technology-driven professional services with more than £1m of initial backing was launched this week in Scotland.

Aberdeins will bring tech developments and innovations in a bid to change the delivery of legal and other professional services.

Lawyer Rob Aberdein has set up what at its core will be a legal practice but which aims to add business in other professional service areas including estate agency, property letting, accountancy and financial services.

Aberdein said the firm will aim for rapid expansion by creating and acquiring businesses in these fields.

He oversaw significant growth for Scottish law firm Aberdein Considine before becoming the youngest ever equity partner at English legal firmWalker Morris.

The Aberdeins board will be led by chairman Tom Barrie, the former MD and owner of logistics business Currie European.

Rob Aberdein said: “The Aberdeins name will become an umbrella for a wide range of professional services, done differently. A

“At its core will be legal services, but we are not just launching a law firm, we are about to deliver the biggest shake up to the Scottish legal scene in decades.

“The sector is awash in traditional firms that are top-heavy with partners whose main focus is on maintaining their income, while the work is often delivered by overworked junior staff. A generation of young lawyers no longer find this attractive.

“That’s before you even talk about the clients, who feel almost constant resentment at the perceived arrogance, lack of responsiveness and value for money they get from their legal firms. Many sectors of the profession have an image problem.”

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The lawyer, who is 40, went on: “Make no mistake, our intention is to be disruptive and we know that won’t make us popular with everyone. But this is long overdue.

“Others who promised change have ended up turning into exactly the kind of firm they set out to displace. That won’t happen with Aberdeins.”

He said technology would be used to meet the changing demands of ordinary people and small businesses across law and other professional services, to “reflect the 2020s, not the 1950s”.

Inspired by tech success stories, Aberdein is billing the firm as a mash up of the challenger, app-based bank, Monzo; of Tesla the electric car company headed by billionaire Elon Musk; and of Harvey Specter, the charismatic central character in legal drama, Suits, which launched Meghan Markle’s career.

He added: “When I speak with people about what we want to achieve it is this description that grabs their attention and makes the hair on the back of their necks stand up. Further market research has validated what I’ve always believed – that clients are ready for something different.”

He said the tech focus will be a key differentiator and the firm will utilise app-based technologies to allow clients to deal with lawyers and other professional services, to access their documents and case files and to easily track real-time progress with the likes of property purchases.

Aberdein added: “We want to be able to communicate very easily with clients and have all of that linked to third party services.

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“Clients want to communicate via WhatsApp and Messenger, yet many lawyers still want to mail out a letter.

“We’ll be looking to break down the traditional legal process to deliver an experience that’s fit for the 21 Century.”

With 10 staff and offices in Renfield Street, Glasgow and Rutland Square, Edinburgh, the firm intends rapid expansion, driven by planned acquisition of well-established but under-invested legal firms.

The initial financial target is to achieve a turnover of £10m by the end of 2022.  The focus will be on conveyancing, wills and executries, powers of attorney, litigation, debt recovery, family law and accessible corporate law for SMEs.



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