vLex has formed a new legal publishing alliance as it seeks to compete against the likes of Thomson Reuters and LexisNexis. This time the deal is with SAGE, a global publishing house that includes over 80 legal journals in its stable.
The deal follows a series of expansionary moves by vLex as it battles to grow its market share in a legal research field still very much dominated by two very large rivals.
Recent moves include: launching a cross-jurisdictional NLP legal research tool; forming an alliance with the American Bar Association’s publishing wing; taking a minority stake in Canadian legal publisher Irwin Law; and expanding into other markets such as the Asia-Pacific. There have also been collaborations with the ICLR, Sabinet and Juta.
In short, vLex is really going for it. And while it cannot buy out all remaining independent legal publishers, it can certainly do alliances and collaboration deals with them to expand what it has on offer.
Under the latest deal, researchers can access an additional 82 journals from SAGE on vLex, covering the UK, the US and India. Titles in this collection include Administration and Society, The Criminal Justice Policy Review, The Australian and New Zealand Journal of Criminology, and The Journal of Criminal Law, among many others.
Rose Higgins, Research and Development Coordinator, vLex Global Markets, said: ‘We are pleased to be working in partnership with SAGE, and we are delighted to offer our customers access to these influential journals. SAGE is a world-renowned publisher and is committed to publishing impactful research.
‘We are confident that our customers will benefit from having access to this collection of journals, and we are excited to grow our Professional Common Law Books and Journals Package with this valuable content.’
Claire Harper, Manager of Global Rights & Licensing, SAGE Publishing, concluded: ‘We’re excited to enter this partnership with vLex and provide their customers with access to a wide range of impactful research in the social and behavioural sciences.’
Is this a big deal? As noted, it’s part of the wider strategy to build a major legal research platform in the face of competition that is not going to go away. But, vLex is not being deterred and is steadily building out what it can provide to lawyers.
At present the legal research platform offers materials on over 100 countries and has a staff of around 200 people.