LOD set to enter Middle East with Dubai launch plans

Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) contract lawyer spin-off LOD (Lawyers on Demand) is set to expand into the Middle East.

The Dubai launch, which is still awaiting regulatory approval, is to be overseen by LOD’s new managing director for the Middle East, Brett Menadue, who joined in May.

Menadue, who is already based in Dubai, previously served as chief legal officer at Mara Global Technology and was also a director of legal and compliance at Nokia in Dubai.

The opening is on track for early autumn, with the exact date dependent on regulatory approval.

When it happens, the Dubai launch will mark the latest overseas expansion for LOD, which in February 2016 announced that it was entering Asia-Pacific via a merger with regional counterpart AdventBalance.

LOD has grown significantly since it was launched in 2007 by Simon Harper, then a partner at BLP, and Jonathan Brenner, BLP’s then head of recruitment. It now has access to more than 600 lawyers and consultants across London, New York, Singapore, Hong Kong, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney.

LOD recorded an 18% increase in turnover for the 2015/16 financial year, with total revenue rising from £12.3m to £14.6m.

Its employment model for lawyers varies depending on the region. In London, lawyers are self-employed and set up their own company through which they operate as freelancers. In Australia, however, lawyers are retained on a contract by LOD.