Distributed law firm Scale snags ex-McGuireWoods fintech pair

  • Scale hired new managing partner in June
  • Partner, counsel join Silicon Valley-based firm

(Reuters) – Virtual law firm Scale has added two former McGuireWoods financial technology lawyers, Jamie Wells and Alexander Gershen, Scale said on Monday.

The Silicon Valley-based duo joins Scale, which has its roots in the tech-rich region, just months after the young and expanding “distributed” law firm tapped Wells and Gershen’s former colleague, David Reidy, to serve as its managing partner.

Scale in June brought on Reidy, who had most recently worked as chief legal officer at Payactiv Inc, the San Jose, California-based fintech startup he joined in January 2020 from McGuireWoods.

Wells, Gershen and Reidy, who was head of McGuireWoods’ fintech practice, all worked at Reed Smith before hopping to the firm in the spring of 2016.

“I started my career working with these lawyers,” Wells said in a statement. “It is exciting to join forces again at this critical moment for clients and at a time of such transformation in the legal profession.”

A number of lawyers over the past year and a half have left Big Law and other traditional law firms to join virtual or hybrid firms.

Wells represents fintech companies and financial institutions in consumer class actions, while Gershen focuses on fintech product counseling, Scale said.

A McGuireWoods representative didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment on the pair’s departure.

Scale came out of “stealth mode” in October 2020 after recruiting former in-house and Big Law attorneys throughout last year. Three technology lawyers started the firm several years ago to offer interim general counsel services to venture-backed Silicon Valley startups. Scale has since grown in headcount and geographic reach.

The firm recently entered the Denver market, and is hoping to expand in other locations with big startup communities, according to Reidy.

“We’re going where those companies are going,” he said.

Scale reorganized lawyers in the firm into four practice groups last month: corporate and securities, litigation, fintech and financial services, and real estate and land use, Reidy said.

Fintech has recently been a hot practice area for law firm lateral hiring.

Morrison & Foerster said on Monday it nabbed former Reed Smith fintech practice co-chair Jeff Silberman.

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Sara Merken

Sara Merken reports on privacy and data security, as well as the business of law, including legal innovation and key players in the legal services industry. Reach her at sara.merken@thomsonreuters.com

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Georgianna Badon