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The 12 individuals featured in our Big Ideas section come from all around the world—from Seoul to Beijing to Pittsburgh—but they all have one thing in common: They imagined that their law firms could be different from the rest. These men and one woman were able to see beyond geographic boundaries and traditional business practices and to visualize how their firms could go in a different—and profitable—direction. Take John Quinn. The intense, driven litigator opened his litigation firm (now known as Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan) in 1986 in Los Angeles with four lawyers. Almost three decades later it is an internationally recognized firm with 650 lawyers and revenues of $850 million. What's the secret? Quinn put his money on the firm becoming an all-litigation shop. "We claim to be experts in one discipline," Quinn says. That singularity of vision is what makes these master strategists stand out: They were able to visualize the future without relying on a road map of the past.
Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe
San Francisco
LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION Orrick led the movement to relocate back office work to a cheaper spot.
King & Wood Mallesons
CHINESE EXPORT With an Aussie merger, Wang built China’s first international law firm.
Quinn Emanuel
Los Angeles
NOBODY DOES IT BETTER John Quinn created the nation’s biggest, most profitable all-litigation firm.

Kim & Chang
AHEAD OF HIS TIME Kim recruited U.S.-trained lawyers to Seoul—before everyone else did.


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