Firm Selected as Finalist in Microsoft’s Legal Business Design Challenge

22 June 2020
Seattle - Global law firm K&L Gates LLP is one of two law firm teams selected as finalists in Microsoft’s Trusted Advisor Forum on Innovation Volume II (“The Remix”), the second in the technology company’s series of legal business design challenges focused on legal services partnerships and delivery.

Coordinated by Microsoft’s Corporate, External and Legal Affairs (CELA) division, the forum included the company inviting its legal service providers to participate in a legal business design challenge with the goal of spurring innovation and partnership between CELA and its providers. The forum followed the model of a similar program held in 2018 to help Microsoft’s trusted service providers bring improvement to the service delivery cycle in line with Microsoft’s dedication to impactful innovation, efficiency, and data analytics.

Rebecca H. Benavides, Director of Legal Business & Strategy for Microsoft CELA, stated: “[The K&L Gates] submission stood out for its clear articulation of the challenge, the ability of the solution to have an impact on a core priority and initiative for Microsoft, and a solution that articulated a framework for how to go about addressing the challenge.”

As a finalist, a K&L Gates team comprised of both lawyers and allied business professionals will partner in a business accelerator program with Bold Duck Studio to work on refining the idea submitted in the first round of the challenge and plot a path to measurable success and execution.

Focusing on Microsoft’s goal of becoming carbon-negative by 2030, K&L Gates’ submission concentrated on how to improve internal processes when executing large-scale contracts of renewable energy purchase agreements with an automated software solution. The solution would provide enhanced tracking, visibility, scalability, and efficiency when working with various lead times, internal and external stakeholders, jurisdictional issues, and signatories. Once successfully implemented, the solution also could be applied to other areas of Microsoft’s business, including real estate, M&A, and other strategic pursuits.

The cross-business function team includes technology transactions partner Carley Andrews; power partner Teresa Hill; associate Lana Le Hir; co-leader of K&L Gates’ corporate practice area Annette Becker; chief information officer and director of pricing and legal project management Bart Gabler; business transformation director Melissa Speidel; director of brand marketing and communications Eileen Kinney-Mallin; matter planning associate director Bethany Knoblauch; senior business solutions analyst Tony Labra; and senior matter planning analyst Corrie Warren. Microsoft CELA team members include assistant general counsel Chad Fischer and renewable energy senior director Adrian Anderson.
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