LOD targets further growth after private equity firm takes controlling stake

Tom Hartley (left) pictured with LOD co-founder Simon Harper

LOD – the flexible lawyers business previously known as Lawyers On Demand – has become the latest legal business to take private equity after Bowmark Capital, which specialises in investing in growth companies, became its principal shareholder.

It means that LOD, which is not a regulated law firm, is cutting ownership ties with Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (BCLP), where it began life, although the international law firm said it would continue to use LOD for its flexible lawyer needs.

A decade ago, LOD was the first provider of freelance lawyers to companies and law firms, a model that has since been widely copied.

Following its merger with AdventBalance in Asia and Australia in 2016, LOD has 10 offices, more than 650 lawyers and consultants, and more than 500 corporate and law firm clients. It has been a separate entity from BCLP since 2012.

LOD chief executive Tom Hartley said: “This is all about access to capital for our next stage of growth.

“We have been exploring alternative options since the summer of 2017 following our successful merger with AdventBalance.”

He said LOD wanted to maintain its expansion “by continuing to add new service lines, geographies and technology”.

“LOD is now in the perfect position to continue to lead the alternative legal services market supported by the capital and expertise of Bowmark.”

Neville Eisenberg, the BCLP partner responsible for LOD, said: “BCLP is extremely proud to have been a pioneer in the alternative legal services market.

“We believe that LOD is ideally placed for further growth and that this new investment by Bowmark will help facilitate LOD’s ambitious plans.

“BCLP has committed to remain close to LOD, partnering with the business for its flexible lawyer needs and we look forward to seeing the results of this exciting new chapter in LOD’s development.”

Bowmark managing partner Charles Ind added: “We have been tracking the alternative legal services sector for a number of years and are delighted to have the opportunity to become the principal shareholder in LOD and support the whole LOD team as they build on the impressive growth they have achieved to date.”

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