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Convergence – a reprise of the topic

About 18 months ago I published a contrarian article [click on the link for the PDF of it] Download put_eggs_in_one_basket.pdf on convergence. In it I challenged the validity of the arguments made in favor of law departments who dramatically reduce the number of law firms they retain. My critique drew on several posts (See my posts of May 1, 2005: “dark side” of partnering; April 2, 2006: challenges to convergence; March 15, 2006: institutional knowledge; March 24, 2005: concentrate spending instead of converging law firms; Aug. 21, 2005: what drives up absolute numbers; March 29, 2007: higher-cost firms; April 5, 2005: benefits of convergence beyond cost savings; Nov. 13, 2005: urge to converge goads law firm mergers; April 9, 2006: converge in the US; diverge overseas; Dec. 12, 2006: disclosure of names of converged firms; and May 3, 2007: trends pushing against convergence.).

Other items have commented on specific convergence programs (See my posts of; May 3, 2005: Merrill Lynch saves $16 million; Aug. 24, 2005: Marriott International; Sept. 13, 2005; a Board of Directors converges; Jan. 3, 2006 and April 22, 2007: Tyco saves $6 million;; March 30, 2006: Societe General’s panel review; April 4, 2006 #3: Heritage’s reduction of firms; and May 9, 2007: Northrop Gumman.).

After the article appeared, I returned to the theme of convergence several times (See my posts of May 13, 2007: forces that may slow the lock-in of converged firms; May 26, 2007: Allstate’s drastic cuts; Feb. 2, 2008: an interview and article about me on convergence; May 27, 2007: Akzo Nobel; July 20, 2007: YTC Worldwide; Jan. 19, 2008: retain two firms in each country; and June 18, 2007: Linde.).