Expert Opinion: François-Régis Fabre-Falret (LPA-CGR)

Closd emerged as the most accomplished tool, had immediate effectiveness, and met our lawyers’ needs (…) in all “transactional” matters.

François-Régis Fabre-Falret is a Partner and member of the Executive Committee at LPA-CGR. A real estate law specialist, he focuses on complex real estate investment deals for French and foreign clients.

François-Régis Fabre-Falret is also one of the leaders of the firm’s digitalization project, which recently led to the appointment of a Chief Digital Officer and to several partnerships with innovative solutions such as Closd.

Closd: Can you introduce LPA-CGR and the types of cases you work on?

François-Régis Fabre-Falret: We are a French business law firm with international reach. Our expertise and knowledge across multiple fields allows us to support our clients through legal advice as well as litigation, as closely as possible to their legal and strategic goals.

Our teams comprise more than 230 lawyers and legal professionals, located across 14 offices in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle-East.

After several months of use, LPA-CGR has decided to conclude a partnership with Closd and to integrate it with its document management system. Why did you choose this solution and which needs does it address?

F-R F-F: LPA-CGR is undergoing a full digital transformation. We cover a wide range of practices within the firm, and we started searching for professional tools.

Closd emerged as the most accomplished tool, had immediate effectiveness, and met our lawyers’ needs perfectly to support our clients in the context of investment (or disinvestment) projects, and more generally in all “transactional” matters.

This doesn’t come as a surprise, as Closd was conceived and developed by former transactional lawyers.

Could you describe the type of transactions you execute with the help of Closd?

F-R F-F: LPA-CGR, as part of its transactional practice, supports its clients throughout the entire investment process (whether selling or buying).

The platform presents two decisive advantages in this process:

  • It is particularly suitable for pre-closing periods relating to investment transactions, because it allows parties to share all the steps and documents necessary to complete  the transaction;
  • It has a simple and fluid electronic signature module.

What is your assessment of your use of the platform? What benefits do you gain from the dematerialization and centralisation of your projects on Closd?

F-R F-F: Closd allows us to exchange documents more quickly, and in a secure environment (the access rights management system is particularly appreciated).

It’s a tool that reduces the workload during the very tense pre-closing period, and which fits the needs and expectations of our clients, who are already very digitalised.

What have your clients’ reactions been regarding the use of electronic signature for your closings, and more generally during your collaboration on Closd?

F-R F-F: The use of electronic signature has been very well received by our clients. Though some of them were a little reluctant at first, they embraced it very quickly because of the simplicity of the process and the flexibility it provides.

We worked extensively with Closd during a “test and learn” phase in order to develop a product that perfectly suits our needs and those of our clients. I must say that the Closd team has been very reactive and interested in our suggestions.

This collaboration will continue over the course of our partnership, in the goal of expanding use of the platform to every relevant lawyer within LPA-CGR.

We are also going to connect Closd with our document management system to further facilitate its use.

LPA-CGR has chosen to place digital transformation at the core of its development axes. Could you tell us why, and share with us your views on the evolution of the legal industry?

F-R F-F: Digital transformation is a priority for our firm. The legal industry as a whole is very late to undertake technological evolution and has maintained practices that will become more and more outdated.

Our ambition over the next two years is to profoundly change our habits with the integration of modern tools that allow digitalisation of the services provided by our support teams and lawyers.

The goal is to move towards more security and efficiency while always looking to bring real added value to our clients. Digitalisation without added value for our clients doesn’t make sense to us.

On this basis, we are looking for tools that can be used in our high added-value practices. Closd is the first “professional” tool that we have identified that responds perfectly to this need.

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