Despite the favourable piece in today’s Information Today Dayton is waking up to learn of the power of Michael Bloomberg’s cheque-book. The IT piece says that LexisNexis has learned from WestlawNext’s debacle of a launch—which “involved telling everyone at the same time about a new product while only providing it to one market and leaving other markets to the guesswork; not telling anyone the price; and generally irritating librarians by promoting the new but often unavailable service directly to patrons”.
Instead, LexisNexis is doing it differently. LexisNexis is targeting the solo and microfirms with the new Lexis Advance. These lawyers have to drum up their own clients and manage their own taxes, payroll, calendars, billing, staffing, and training—all in addition to practicing law! They don’t have librarians or law libraries. They work in small offices, home offices, or shared suites.
But for those in the legal information sector, the big news is that Bloomberg Legal has persuaded two senior Lexis veterans, Lou Andreozzi and Larry Thompson to spearhead Bloomberg’s assault on Dayton and Eagan. Andreozzi was formerly president and chief executive of LexisNexis North American Legal Markets – he has been named chairman of Bloomberg Law. He took Martindale-Hubbell from a print to an online product from 1996 to 2000. Larry Thompson, who spent 12 years with LexisNexis as senior vice president of business development, has joined Bloomberg as chief operating officer. He has more than a quarter century of experience in legal publishing, and was also vice president for sales and marketing at Shepard’s/McGraw-Hill.
Even discounting for press release speak , the claims made for Bloomberg law are bold:
“Bloomberg Law is breaking new ground in the world of legal research by bringing to lawyers, through the Web, the same innovative technology and analytics that set Bloomberg apart in the financial world. I am delighted to be part of the team that will take Bloomberg Law to the next level.”
“Bloomberg Law is a formidable product, and I am confident it will change the legal research playing field with its expertise in data, technology and its extraordinary financial news and business analysis. Bloomberg Law has the flexibility of a stand-alone product with access to Bloomberg’s world-class resources and delivered to the legal profession in an intuitive interface.”
Monica Bay reported an interview in which Andreozzi clearly recognized the big gripe against the dynamic duopoly: “Bloomberg Law will offer something that law firms have been asking for, for a long time: fixed pricing — extremely attractive — and predictable pricing.”
Of course it’s only 11 months since Mr. Andreozzi’s last big move.