For this week’s feature post (213), Legal Evolution is pleased to welcome new regular contributor Zach Abramowitz, a very talented lawyer-turned-entrepreneur who has spent many years in and around the LegalTech and NewLaw trenches as a founder, consultant, investor, and columnist at Above the Law.

The older I get, the more I appreciate the complexity of the legal services market.   One of the key features of a highly complex market is that the participants–in this case, mostly lawyers–don’t necessarily have to get the big picture into focus in order to be commercially successful. Rather, mastering the key moving parts of a particular niche is much more important.  Unfortunately, this dynamic has some significant second-order consequences, such as smart lawyers who have made a lot of money overgeneralizing beyond their own narrow experience.  Cf. Post 013 (discussing hazards of generalizing about clients); Post 048 (same); Post 051 (Jae Um presenting graphically the unstructured and chaotic legal market).

That said, in the year 2020, a reliable map of the legal services market would certainly come in handy.   Although Zach Abramowitz might be wealthier if he had stuck it out as an associate at Schulte Roth & Zabel, he’d have blown the opportunity to be one of the legal industry’s few reliable cartographers.

Zach’s Post 213 brings an immensely complex topic into focus, as he examines the possibility–and evidence–that law firms are best positioned to capture the emerging legal tech market. Ironically, some of the most enthusiastic readers of Zach’s commentary will be those working inside law firms on innovation projects, as it is very difficult for those in a stationary position to see and connect all the dots.  Indeed, that is the insight and upside of Zach spending so many countless hours walking in and around the world of law firms, legal departments, legal tech, NewLaw, venture capital, and Silicon Valley start-ups.

In 2020, one of my biggest editorial coups was persuading Zach to start writing out some of his keen observations for the benefit of Legal Evolution readers, joining what is already a very deep bench of expert commentators.  Enjoy today’s first serving (213), as more Zach Abramowitz content is on its way.