September 27, 2010
For the third time this year, BNU received a vote of trust as Intellectual Property/Patents Firm of the Year (Honourable Mention) this time from Asian Counsel’s In-House Community Survey 2010. In July 2010, Chambers Asia prominently listed BNU in its survey of Leading Lawyers and Intellectual Property Law Firms in Asia. In August 2010, it was IP Asia’s turn to rank BNU high in its survey of Leading Trademark Practices in Asia.
Asian Counsel is a magazine published by Pacific Business Press Limited of Hong Kong. It caters to the community of in-house counsels in Asia and the Middle East. “The results are based on the votes and testimonials received from many hundreds of in-house counsel from across Asia Pacific and the UAE, and are a true representation of which private practice teams have made a strong impression on their clients and the in-house community in general,” according to the Asian Counsel. “This year, for the first time, we have also awarded Honourable Mentions to the many firms who received a high numbers of votes and strong recommendations in certain practice areas,” the magazine said.
On the methodology employed, the Asian Counsel magazine said that “[r]espondents in eleven jurisdictions were invited to take part in our confidential survey, both online and at our In-House Congress events across the region. The survey contained questions (multiple choice where appropriate) which canvassed views on the state of the in-house community in each jurisdiction, and areas of consideration and concern in respect of utilizing and retaining the services of external counsel.”
The survey also included questions on the choice of external counsel. When it comes to selecting domestic and international external counsel, “motivations for choice are many and varied, ranging from whether flexible billing policies are offered and whether a particular firm has been preapproved by the company, to reputation not only of firm but also of individual practitioners.”
Respondents in the 2010 survey were invited to comment on the three factors that are most likely to influence their choice of external counsel for the remainder of this year and beyond, from a possible eighteen options. “A substantial 75.89 percent of respondents elected expertise in a specific area as the most fundamental criteria in their selection of external counsel, whilst responsiveness and fees, respectively earning second (53.07 percent) and third (51.53 percent) place, were again popular and influential choices, as was the reputation of a law firm (42.3 percent).”
“Respondents were also asked to comment on the issues they have found to be most concerning when dealing with external counsel in the past year. From a regional perspective, excessive fees again ranked as the criterion of greatest concern for in-house counsel in 2010, with the failure of law firms to understand their client’s business or company also polling in second place now for two years running. Interestingly, complaints concerning a lack of partner involvement rose from eighth to third place this year, as in-house counsel begin to demand and expect improved service levels from their chosen law firms.”