Norton Rose Fulbright looks to expand its Newcastle hub to over three times its current size

International firm Norton Rose Fulbright is set to significantly expand its Newcastle legal support hub.

The Newcastle hub trials new legal technology and collects and analyses data for research, in addition to handling less complex legal work. As The Lawyer reports, Norton Rose is planning to increase the hub’s size from 28 lawyers, paralegals and business staff to around 100. However, according to Legal Cheek the expansion does not mean that the firm will be increasing the number of training contracts it offers or moving any of its training to Newcastle.

The move continues a trend that some have termed ‘northshoring’, where large firms set up support offices in cities where the cost of renting office space is much lower than in London. Firms including Freshfields, Berwin Leighton Paisner and Latham & Watkins have established hubs in Manchester in recent years, while Allen & Overy, Baker McKenzie and Herbert Smith Freehills have launched centres in Belfast.

Martin Scott, managing partner at Norton Rose Fulbright, commented on the firm’s expansion plans: “We’re pleased by the support we’ve received locally with the setup of the legal process hub. There are a number of reasons as to why Newcastle is ideally placed for Norton Rose Fulbright, including access to a strong pool of local talent that is able to support our efforts globally, and the city’s strong and growing reputation for innovation and technology. Expanding the team outside London also allows us to trial emerging technology and working practices, including agile working, in a structured way.”

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