Embedded Counsel Criss-Cross the Globe

As part of my recent tour of Australia – well, the south-eastern part any way – George Beaton invited me to speak at a few of his live and taped events. One of the many points that interested me was his modelling on Axiom. As many know, Axiom provides embedded counsel to companies needing to fill gaps in its skill sets on short term bases. It has grown rapidly and profitably over the past 10 years.

According to George, Axiom, grew its revenue at a 72% compound annual growth rate from 2002 to 2011 while at the same time, DLA Piper, has grown its revenue at 13% CAGR. At this rate George predicts that Axiom will be the largest legal services provider by revenue by 2018.

And Axiom is certainly not alone at the embedded counsel party. Cognition and Conduit are the Canadian pioneers who are gathering clients with little difficulty now. AdventBalance is the Australia edition to the embedded counsel phenomenen. Ken Jagger, its CEO, also spoke at the live events with me. AdventBalance now has offices across Australia and in Singapore and has placed embedded counsel around the globe.

Still think that the world of legal services is not changing?


  1. The legal services world changing aside, those numbers don’t feel right… When a firm is founded in 2000, and then you benchmark the annual growth rate starting in 2002, you are isolating the fastest growth period of any company. A certain amount of growth must happen to scale into a business, or the company simply dies.

    The actual numbers aren’t displayed in the graph, but if you look at 2011-2012, the growth curves are actually on par. In fact, by putting 2 business cards on my monitor (very scientific, I know), I have DLA Piper growing faster. Moreso in the prior year, 2010-2011.

    So that hockey stick curve projection… is almost entirely done by comparing current revenues vs. their start-up years. Not an apples-vs.-apples comparison.