“We wish to promote the rule of law”
Says Mohan Ramaswamy, managing director, India, LexisNexis Legal & Professional, in conversation with Varsha Verma. LexisNexis India was recently in news for acquiring indigenous legal publishing house -Universal Law Publishing. Publ ishing industry in India is very fragmented, with national as well as regional players. Courts in India have a phenomenal number of pending cases. The Indian judiciary has got a major investment boost in the last five years and it is important to equip the judiciary with the right tools and resources. If we look at the numbers, Indian legal publishing would be a US$ 70-75 million industry, with a growth of 7-8 percent per annum, told Mohan Ramaswamy, managing director, India, LexisNexis Legal & Professional, a leading publisher and online solutions provider in the legal, tax, academic, and test-prep segments.
“We wish to promote the rule of law and expand our sphere and provide authentic and well-researched information to the legal fraternity. LexisNexis was purely a legal publishing house till a few years back, when we added tax and later academic titles to our list. This has been achieved through both organic as well as inorganic growth. While growing organically, we have built up our own strengths, we have also partnered or acquired existing players who were either looking at partnerships or were on the verge of exiting,” added Mohan.
LexisNexis has recently acqui red Univers a l Law Publishing, which has been publishing law books and bare acts for legal professionals, academics and students in the Indian market for five decades. Recognised for their relevance and speed to market, Universal Law Publishing titles are held in high regard by legal professionals across India. Over the years, Universal has published popular works by eminent authors like PM Bakshi, HM Seervai, KD Gaur, justice VR Krishna Iyer, justice PN Bhagwati, justice Michael Kirby, Soli J Sorabjee and Arun Jaitley to name a few.
Mohan added, “It i s a strategic acquisition as Universal Law Publishing perfectly complements our existing range of offerings in the legal market. Their presence in the bare act space expands our reach to a large set of legal practitioners. And soon, we expect to make Universal’s content available on our Indian online legal research solution – Lexis India – providing even more content to our customers.”
“LexisNexis India is one of the leading publishers and online solutions providers with many good authors and titles. This combination gives authors an opportunity to work with superior editorial and product development systems with higher quality benchmarks that provide greater value to customers. Under the aegis of LexisNexis editorial and supported by their strong marketing and sales teams, Universal Law Publishing titles will now be accessible in more markets,” he added.
Mohan RamaswamyOn asking about whether Universal Law Publishing would continue its brand, Mohan replied, “We will try our best to retain the brand as far as we can as it has its own brand identity. Nevertheless, it would become an imprint of LexisNexis and best practices we have adopted at LexisNexis would be practised here to service our customers better.”
Talking about the competition in the legal publishing segment, Mohan shared that there’s an opportunity for everybody and it is always healthy to have competition. “The USP lies in better and easier platform. LexisNexis has differentiated and created a niche for itself.
We have invested in people and right resources. In India, we had a team of just 30 professionals 7-8 years back, which has now increased to 250+ employees and we are expanding further. The recent acquisition of Universal Law Publishing has added 50 more employees to our team. Besides, we have good online tools and technologies and stateof- the-art platform. And we are making continuous investments in all spheres,” he added.
“LexisNexis is committed to India, and we will continue to make the right investments to help our customers become more effective, efficient, and productive in their professions,” concluded Mohan.