UPS Inc. recently decided to hire a law firm for help with trademark matters. The Atlanta-based Fortune 500 company has been praised for ambitiously winnowing its core outside counsel network to just about 26 firms. So you’d think general counsel Norman Brothers Jr. would have the desired firm for the project on speed dial. But that’s not the case at all.
In an attempt to prevent complacency, Brothers makes a point of asking firms, including firms already on its panel, to submit “requests for proposals” (RFPs). It took this approach with trademark work and a surprise winner emerged: Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton, a firm previously not on UPS’s go-to list.
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