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mmadigital on track for 400% growth, new C-level appointments and investment in medical claims screening company

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mmadigital on track for 400% growth, new C-level appointments and investment in medical claims screening company

mmadigital, the Manchester based legal sector digital marketing specialist, is forecasting 400% growth, investing in medico-legal companies Collaboras and CLMR and has bolstered its management team as it continues to rapidly gain market share. mmadigital generates enquiries from people with potential personal injury, medical negligence and other legal claims. Its in-house legal enquiry capture team qualifies these claims and then refers them to panel law firms to be pursued.

After gaining recognition as a specialist legal digital marketing agency, mmadigital’s CEO Dez Derry took the decision two years ago to change the company’s business model to focus purely on customer acquisition on behalf of firms.

The decision has paid off – in year one it achieved £900,000 turnover and is on track for £4.5 million turnover in the current year.

Dez Derry, mmadigital CEO, comments: “The last two years have been tremendous in terms of growth as we have realised the opportunity for high quality legal claim lead generation services at just the right time. We’re expecting further growth within the legal services market and are also piloting lead generation services for new markets. We hope this will drive turnover to above £6million within the next three years.”

To increase its focus on highly qualified leads for law firms, mmadigital is also teaming up with Collaboras, the Macclesfield-based specialist legal consultancy providing outsourced medico-legal services for law firms. Collaboras’ team of medical advisors are experts in clinical negligence and catastrophic injury claims and will work with mmadigital to provide medical qualification on their generated leads as well as helping with the collation of medical paperwork for mmadigital’s clients. Collaboras has a sister company, CLMR – a medical reporting agency – that will assist with the obtaining of expert medical reports for the panel firms.

Dez Derry comments, “We’re now responsible for supplying leads into some of the UK’s leading law firms and a large number of fee earners. We believe we’re capturing 20-25% of the enquiries in our chosen consumer legal markets through digital marketing using our own consumer brands. We currently have a team of 10 with plans to double, and an additional 10 with Collaboras coming on board.”

Three recent senior appointments add to mmadigital’s growth strategy. Lisa Clothier joins as director of operations and Timothy Felkin joins as head of client services – both with extensive experience at similar lead generation companies. mmadigital has also appointed Andy Parkinson as head of legal services, who has accumulated 18+ years’ experience in consumer services operations management with the likes of AI Claims Solutions, now part of Slater & Gordan.

Dez Derry explains, “The business model we have followed for the last two years is all about being a dedicated customer acquisition business for professional firms that don’t have the internal resources for this. It’s a high growth market because of the growing competition for highly qualified genuine claims that save law firms a lot of time and resource when taking on new clients.

“By focusing on technology, innovation and our unique in-house expertise, we believe mmadigital has the potential for continued growth both within the legal sector and new markets, such as financial services.”

Director at Collaboras and CLMR, Jan Thompson says, “We are delighted to be working in partnership with mmadigital. We can see the mutually beneficial value that our screening service adds to mmadigital’s innovative business model. This approach will be very attractive to law firms by saving them time and resource in providing them with only the highest quality leads. In addition, our other bespoke services, including records collation and medical reporting, ensure that our expert team can provide continuity and support through those all important investigatory stages.”

mmadigital hopes to expand further this year and is looking for law graduates to join the team to support the company’s new dedicated in-bound call centre, which offers a credible alternative for law graduate employment. The growing business is also on the lookout for a number of immediate vacancies listed on their website.

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Sunak to use budget to expand apprenticeships in England

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Sunak to use budget to expand apprenticeships in England 1

LONDON (Reuters) – British finance minister Rishi Sunak will announce more funding for apprenticeships in England when he unveils his budget next week, the government said on Friday.

Employers taking part in the Apprenticeship Initiative Scheme will from April 1 receive 3,000 pounds ($4,179) for each apprentice hired, regardless of age – an increase on current grants of between 1,500 and 2,000 pounds depending on age.

The scheme will extended by six months until the end of September, the finance ministry said.

Sunak will also announce an extra 126 million pounds for traineeships for up to 43,000 placements.

Sunak’s March 3 budget will likely include a new round of spending to prop up the economy during what he hopes will be the last phase of lockdown, but he will also probably signal tax rises ahead to plug the huge hole in the public finances.

Sunak is also expected to announce a “flexi-job” apprenticeship scheme, whereby apprentices can join an agency and work for multiple employers in one sector, the finance ministry said.

“We know there’s more to do and it’s vital this continues throughout the next stage of our recovery, which is why I’m boosting support for these programmes, helping jobseekers and employers alike,” Sunak said in a statement.

(Reporting by Andy Bruce, editing by David Milliken)

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UK seeks G7 consensus on digital competition after Facebook blackout

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UK seeks G7 consensus on digital competition after Facebook blackout 2

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain is seeking to build a consensus among G7 nations on how to stop large technology companies exploiting their dominance, warning that there can be no repeat of Facebook’s one-week media blackout in Australia.

Facebook’s row with the Australian government over payment for local news, although now resolved, has increased international focus on the power wielded by tech corporations.

“We will hold these companies to account and bridge the gap between what they say they do and what happens in practice,” Britain’s digital minister Oliver Dowden said on Friday.

“We will prevent these firms from exploiting their dominance to the detriment of people and the businesses that rely on them.”

Dowden said recent events had strengthened his view that digital markets did not currently function properly.

He spoke after a meeting with Facebook’s Vice-President for Global Affairs, Nick Clegg, a former British deputy prime minister.

“I put these concerns to Facebook and set out our interest in levelling the playing field to enable proper commercial relationships to be formed. We must avoid such nuclear options being taken again,” Dowden said in a statement.

Facebook said in a statement that the call had been constructive, and that it had already struck commercial deals with most major publishers in Britain.

“Nick strongly agreed with the Secretary of State’s (Dowden’s) assertion that the government’s general preference is for companies to enter freely into proper commercial relationships with each other,” a Facebook spokesman said.

Britain will host a meeting of G7 leaders in June.

It is seeking to build consensus there for coordinated action toward “promoting competitive, innovative digital markets while protecting the free speech and journalism that underpin our democracy and precious liberties,” Dowden said.

The G7 comprises the United States, Japan, Britain, Germany, France, Italy and Canada, but Australia has also been invited.

Britain is working on a new competition regime aimed at giving consumers more control over their data, and introducing legislation that could regulate social media platforms to prevent the spread of illegal or extremist content and bullying.

(Reporting by William James; Editing by Gareth Jones and John Stonestreet)

 

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Britain to offer fast-track visas to bolster fintechs after Brexit

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Britain to offer fast-track visas to bolster fintechs after Brexit 3

By Huw Jones

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain said on Friday it would offer a fast-track visa scheme for jobs at high-growth companies after a government-backed review warned that financial technology firms will struggle with Brexit and tougher competition for global talent.

Finance minister Rishi Sunak said that now Britain has left the European Union, it wants to make sure its immigration system helps businesses attract the best hires.

“This new fast-track scale-up stream will make it easier for fintech firms to recruit innovators and job creators, who will help them grow,” Sunak said in a statement.

Over 40% of fintech staff in Britain come from overseas, and the new visa scheme, open to migrants with job offers at high-growth firms that are scaling up, will start in March 2022.

Brexit cut fintechs’ access to the EU single market and made it far harder to employ staff from the bloc, leaving Britain less attractive for the industry.

The review published on Friday and headed by Ron Kalifa, former CEO of payments fintech Worldpay, set out a “strategy and delivery model” that also includes a new 1 billion pound ($1.39 billion) start-up fund.

“It’s about underpinning financial services and our place in the world, and bringing innovation into mainstream banking,” Kalifa told Reuters.

Britain has a 10% share of the global fintech market, generating 11 billion pounds ($15.6 billion) in revenue.

The review said Brexit, heavy investment in fintech by Australia, Canada and Singapore, and the need to be nimbler as COVID-19 accelerates digitalisation of finance, all mean the sector’s future in Britain is not assured.

It also recommends more flexible listing rules for fintechs to catch up with New York.

“We recognise the need to make the UK attractive a more attractive location for IPOs,” said Britain’s financial services minister John Glen, adding that a separate review on listings rules would be published shortly.

“Those findings, along with Ron’s report today, should provide an excellent evidence base for further reform.”

SCALING UP

Britain pioneered “sandboxes” to allow fintechs to test products on real consumers under supervision, and the review says regulators should move to the next stage and set up “scale-boxes” to help fintechs navigate red tape to grow.

“It’s a question of knowing who to call when there’s a problem,” said Kay Swinburne, vice chair of financial services at consultants KPMG and a contributor to the review.

A UK fintech wanting to serve EU clients would have to open a hub in the bloc, an expensive undertaking for a start-up.

“Leaving the EU and access to the single market going away is a big deal, so the UK has to do something significant to make fintechs stay here,” Swinburne said.

The review seeks to join the dots on fintech policy across government departments and regulators, and marshal private sector efforts under a new Centre for Finance, Innovation and Technology (CFIT).

“There is no framework but bits of individual policies, and nowhere does it come together,” said Rachel Kent, a lawyer at Hogan Lovells and contributor to the review.

($1 = 0.7064 pounds)

(Reporting by Huw Jones; editing by Jane Merriman and John Stonestreet)

 

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