AIG appoints 25 firms following EMEA legal panel review

Linklaters, Mayer Brown and Travers Smith are among a clutch of 25 firms to have won places on AIG’s legal panel, as the insurance group announces the creation of a new centre to manage its EMEA legal advisers.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and US headquartered firms Morrison & Foerster and Chadbourne & Parke have also taken places on the panel , which covers its claims and corporate legal panels for the UK and its nine largest European operations.

The EMEA panel will be managed by a newly-created Legal Operations Centre, headed by Stacey Coote, formerly global head of procurement at RBS.

Some of the 25 firms will advise exclusively on the claims side, while others have been appointed to advise on AIG’s corporate work as well.

“We are aiming to partner with fewer law firms across EMEA and build broader and deeper relationships with these firms,” commented EMEA general counsel Chris Newby. “Our objective is to manage our law firm relationships centrally and to ensure an excellent legal service to all areas of the business – claims, underwriting and corporate.”

“Having set up an excellent structure, the next stage is to improve the way we manage our legal panel. Better management information and closer working relationships will help us to drive efficiencies and, more importantly, improve quality of service.

“For example we may choose to adopt alternative fee arrangements connected to the delivery of business objectives. We see the potential for further consolidation in the future but we are currently focused on quality of service.”

Earlier this year, AIG confirmed it was using a reverse-auction tender process for some elements of the review.

Elsewhere, AIG is in the process of reviewing its panel of external legal advisers across the Asia-Pacific region, as the insurance giant sizes up a potential merger of its corporate and claims panels.

The US-based company currently has a corporate panel including five to 10 law firms across several Asian countries, alongside a separate claims panel subdivided by jurisdiction and area of expertise.

The corporate panel covers 13 countries where AIG has operations in Asia – Hong Kong, China, Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, Australia and New Zealand. AIG expects to finalise the process before the end of the year.

The appointments in full:

Berwin Leighton Paisner
Bond Dickinson
Chadbourne & Parke
Clyde & Co
CMS Cameron McKenna
DAC Beachcroft
DLA Piper
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Hill Dickinson
Holman Fenwick Willan
Mayer Brown
Mills & Reeve
Morrison & Foerster
Murphy & O’Rawe
Norton Rose Fulbright
Robin Simon
Simmons & Simmons
Simpson & Marwick
Travers Smith