Interview with: Roger Gladei, Managing Partner
Gladei & Partners | View firm profile
What do you see as the main points that differentiate gladei & partners from your competitors?
Our partners have the practical experience of in-house work, so they know the corporate life from inside. Our key lawyers have also economic or international business background, so they speak the client’s language. We’ve been really sticking to our values, posted on our web-site from day one, namely turning our knowledge into value for clients, drive for excellence, trusted partnership and forward thinking.
Which practices do you see growing in the next 12 months? What are the drivers behind that?
M&A, and particularly due diligence and transaction structuring, has been keeping us very busy. We’ve established strong cooperation with reputable foreign law firms, teaming up in large-scale cross-border deals having Moldovan element. This pays off for the client, we noted.
Public procurement and infrastructure projects is another area which will be requiring significant legal support. Moldova has recently received important EU and US support for infrastructure projects, and contractors do need to avoid the pitfalls in local setting up or business operation.
Legal risk management is growing in demand, both from SMEs and large MNEs, covering all aspects of corporate life, from employment, authorization, data privacy and IP protection, to regulatory compliance, corporate governance and antitrust matters.
Last but not least, real estate development and construction has made our lawyers burn the midnight oil, especially due to inconsistent regulation and lack of uniform enforcement. The market is growing and so the demand for qualified legal service.
What’s the main change you’ve made in the firm that will benefit clients?
First, we’ve implemented the integrated approach, where the client can find all business services needed in one stop. We’ve established working relations with reliable selected accountants, tax advisors, property valuators, translators, notaries, court bailiffs, so that the client doesn’t need to lose time shopping around and can benefit of our experience.
Second, we’ve consolidated and deployed our internal intellectual capital, accumulated over the years, to deliver proven and tested solutions to the client.
Third, we’ve gone pro-active. Good foreign and international clients have strong internal systems and business processes, but the practice has shown that local legal risk management is the Achilles’ heel. And the price for non-compliance is too high.
Is technology changing the way you interact with your clients, and the services you can provide them?
Tech is a threat we are turning into an opportunity. Digital internal workflow, seamless client communication, data privacy and protection are the areas coming into my mind first when I think of recent developments. Also, in novelty for the Moldovan market, with the support of USAID BRITE program we’ve launched a dedicated business support on-line platform www.controale.md where any Moldovan business facing state inspections may find first-hand practical advice.
The feedback is very positive, now the local businessman is not powerless when facing the state inspector and we are happy to hear the businessmen saying they are not going to pay bribes anymore.
Can you give us a practical example of how you have helped a client to add value to their business?
The above on-line support platform is an example. Another one refers to a client who recently implemented, with our legal support, an outstanding fin tech project, a pioneering in the market. Moldovan businesses have gained better access to finance and so the support for growth.
Another example relates to a full legal review of all core business contracts a Moldovan bank entrusted to us. Having banked on our 22 years of experience in banking and finance, the bank understood that preventing legal risks would save significant effort and avoid legal troubles, sometime irremediable.
Are clients looking for stability and strategic direction from their law firms – where do you see the firm in three years’ time?
Clients look for effective and efficient legal solutions, not mere advice, factoring not only the legal but also the business components. The client needs you to put yourself into his shoes, to treat his business as your own. The client wants you to fight for him, and there is no better reward for us than hearing the client to be full of confidence in us.
It is our 10th year of operation as a law firm and so a good occasion to plan for the future. I am very proud that we managed to evolve from a small specialized firm to a full-fledge multi-disciplinary team, with deep expertise and practical experience in the most needed legal practice areas. We’ve forged a strong team of talented professionals, keen and able to transform their knowledge and expertise into value for the client. I am fully confident in the future with such a team.