On Tuesday, legal tech and innovation accelerator LexFusion announced it has hired legal industry veteran Christina Wojcik as the new Managing Director of its Corporate Legal Operations, Commercial Transactions, and Innovation Acceleration arm.
In her new role, Wojcik will not only continue to support LexFusion’s existing member companies, including Factor, Agiloft, Priori and Macro, among others, but will also help to grow the LexFusion collective in the corporate legal operations space, according to the press release.
Prior to joining LexFusion, Wojcik was in charge of innovation and technology strategy at Citi, where she launched the financial institution’s AI for Legal program, built a legal innovation lab and supported the diligence process for investment opportunities pursued by Citi’s Ventures teams. Before that, Wojcik focused on growth and customer success at global legal services company Pangea3, and enterprise AI contract analytics company Seal Software. At both companies, she provided support from early stage through major acquisitions—experience she looks forward to bringing to LexFusion, according to the release.
Wojcik told Legaltech News, “I spent the past four years building an innovation program at Citi, and through my conversations with [LexFusion CEO and co-founder] Joe [Borstein], I figured that, with my background in sales and marketing and building companies, my background in what it takes to get business done in-house, … I could really bring some good value to the work that LexFusion is doing with supporting its memberships and how you position yourself for sales to law firms and corporations.”
“With long and intense onboarding processes, in-house legal departments can’t afford to make the wrong tech selection and tech providers need to understand how to develop their software and info security in ways that can accelerate sales cycles,” she added in the press release.
In the release, Borstein noted the increased emphasis on commercial transactions in explaining the decision to bring Wojcik on board. “We needed a unicorn—someone with deep corporate experience who understands what it is required to meet enterprise needs at scale and deep experience opening up new markets for legal innovation in an industry resistant to change. Christina is that unicorn
Wojcik’s hire increases LexFusion’s team to eight professionals around the globe who offer extensive experience in generative AI, law firm management and technology that spans a wide range of legal industry use cases. It’s a continuation of what Borstein described in the release as the company’s “doubling down on practice-specific expertise” since “generative AI has turned up the heat on an already hot legal technology market, making it swelter.”
The first move in LexFusion’s investment in an expanded talent base was the hiring of Global Director of Litigation Canby Wood in July 2022.
“If not now, then when?,” noted LexFusion co-founder and chief strategy officer Casey Flaherty in the release. “As always, reality will lag behind hype as to the impact of Generative AI. This inflection point is real. But the new tech is not magic,” he added, highlighting that, while the industry has already seen some notable gen AI product releases, the reality is that “the road to product is long and the road to implementation/integration is even longer. Legal will not change overnight.”
In speaking with Legaltech News, Wojcik reflected on how her experience as a technology buyer at Citi will be an asset at LexFusion going forward, particularly when it comes to “understanding sales and marketing hype versus what a product or service can actually deliver.” She said she’s looking forward to bridging that gap on a much broader scale than she could supporting a single organization.
“The members that have joined the LexFusion community have recognized the value of the network that [the LexFusion team members] bring,” she explained. “We know a lot of the law firms, we know a lot of the in-house corporate and operations, and we can help them by suggesting or positioning our members to say, ‘these are organizations that are incredible and are adding a lot of value in this particular space. As you’re looking to build out your strategy, your roadmap, your vision, these are some of the curated players that you absolutely need to look at.’”
Because Wojcik’s background is almost entirely on the corporate side, she will be focused on helping identify more opportunities for emerging technologies and future members in the transactional space.
As Flaherty explained it in the release, “What has changed seemingly overnight is expectations, especially from the business. ‘But we’ve always done it this way’ and ‘what we really need is more headcount’ have never been less potent. This is a period of punctuated equilibrium with rapid evolution in what the business expects from legal functions and what legal functions expect from the extended legal value chain—law firms, managed service providers, and tech.”
He added that advising organizations on how to optimize change in those areas “requires a rare mix of experience, passion, insight, and foresight. Almost no one embodies those qualities as well as Christina Wojcik. We’re so pleased to welcome her to the team.”
Two of LexFusion’s member companies have had successful startup exits in recent years. E-discovery provider DISCO, creator of generative AI-powered e-discovery chatbot Cecilia, went public in July 2021, with an IPO of seven million shares of its common stock priced at $32 a share. Earlier this year, legal research provider Casetext, creator of the GPT-4-powered AI legal assistant CoCounsel, was acquired by legal research giant Thomson Reuters for $650 million in cash, in a deal that officially closed in August.
Wojcik will continue to be based in Tampa, Florida, where she founded the Tampa Legal Network about two months ago. Today it comprises over 90 in-house corporate members.