Legal Team Takes Honors
Of the 40 in-house legal teams evaluated in this year’s report, 16 were selected and ranked as “winners,” “standout,” “highly commended” and “commended.” Prologis’ 47-member legal team ranked third on the list overall, bested only by Google (600+ legal staff) and Monsanto (260 on staff). Prologis ranked at the top of the “standout” category, beating out Chrysler (66 on staff) and Verizon (265 on staff).
“The default perception of the industry has been of the in-house lawyer as gatekeeper or, at the very best, an occasionally useful business enabler,” said Reena SenGupta, consultant with RSG Consulting. “But an examination of the featured 2013 legal teams shows how this perception is far off the mark. These teams reveal how essential in-house lawyers can be in enabling innovation in their businesses and how their own operational innovations impact the bottom line.”
Prologis’ seven-page submission was evaluated for originality, business alignment, value creation and impact. Regarding the company’s top “standout” ranking, the report commented: “Lawyers have moved to become a business-generation function with the chief legal officer sitting on the investment and executive committees. The team has created a standardized approach to leasing arrangements.”
“It’s a great honor to be noted as a top legal team by the Financial Times,” said Ed Nekritz, Prologis’ chief legal officer and general counsel. “The legal team is an integral part of the business here, and what most law firms consider extraordinary is everyday work for us. It takes the skills and cooperation of colleagues from many departments, not just legal, to make it happen, so recognition like this is a win for the entire company.”
Now in its fourth year, the Financial Times U.S. Innovative Lawyers Report ranks 355 submissions from nearly a hundred firms. Winners were selected in eight categories, judged by market experts, FT staff and RSG Consulting, a research group that conducted 530 interviews with senior lawyers and business executives between August and November this year.