A recent report on the Am Law 100′s move into alternative legal services flagged Morgan, Lewis & Bockius’ eData practice as one of the key players in “Wave One” of firms launching captive ALSPs, a period that ended in 2008.

Morgan Lewis partner Tess Blair, who founded eData in 2004 and still leads it today, disputes that categorization, arguing the unit is neither “captive” nor an ALSP. Nonetheless, eData—which was created as an e-discovery platform—also doesn’t qualify as a typical law firm practice. Blair commands a team of nearly 300 lawyers, technologists, data scientists and other professionals that’s competing for business with third-party vendors as well as groups within other firms. She spoke earlier this week about how eData has evolved over the years.

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