Your time is short. This quick read gives you 5 things you need to know from LegalTech in the past seven days.
Australia’s Spectacular LegalTech Scene Revealed
The Financial Times has published a special report highlighting the Australian legal sector, arguing the country’s innovations “lead their peers across the globe”. It highlights widespread tech and transformation. Lesley Hitchens, Dean at the faculty of law at the University of Technology Sydney, is recognized for legal innovation, having shifted “the tone of the debate in Australia” on the value of legal technology. Meanwhile, Sue Kench of King & Wood Mallesons, the first woman to lead one of country’s Big Eight law firms, has created an innovation unit, drawing heavily on the expertise of the firm’s non-legal professionals. GC Sarah Turner of property website REA Group has automated contract production and created an artificial intelligence tool to check the veracity of claims made by the sales and marketing team.
Other themes in the report include a law firm “fight back against Big Four invaders” (for instance, MinterEllison bought the tech consultancy ITNewcom to strengthen its own technology division).
Showing the growing power of Australia, the Corporate Legal Operations Consortium (CLOC) is also running an inaugural event in Sydney on 4 September 2018
Balkanized legal market
Jae Um, insights analyst & business designer for legal markets, writes that “legal innovation is an extreme sport” and that Legal innovators encounter a messy, fragmented, and chaotic legal market. She argues the market is “extremely fragmented into many smaller units that are mutually hostile or uncooperative. This is true at the establishment level (individual firms) and at the segment level (the categories and subgroups into which firms roughly organize themselves).”
LegalTech adopters of the week
AmLaw 100 firm Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton has partnered with judicial analytics company Gavelytics to provide the firm’s lawyers with access to background information and actionable insights on civil trial court judges (Legal IT Professionals). Brodies, Scotland’s leading law firm, has deployed artificial intelligence platform Luminance. In conversation with Zach Abramowitz , Matt Lepore, GC of BASF says his law department has developed a tool develop a tool allowing his team “to analyze the data we received” from law firms ” in a way that helped us determine if the firms doing our work were walking the walk on diversity.”
Funding and IPOs of the week
Media, technology and IP law firm Wiggin has announced that INCOPRO, a machine learning brand and IP protection business that the firm co-founded, has raised $21m from equity investor Highland Europe.
Plans for an IPO were announced by UK national law firm, Knights. CEO David Beech put technology at the center of the vision for the regional firm expected to be valued at £100 million ($133 million): “You will see a huge change in the next decade driven by client demand for value and the catalyst of technology.”
GDPR and LegalTech
Our recent In-House Counsel’s Legal Tech Buyer’s Guide 2018 highlighted how AI is helping companies understand GDPR, particularly contract due diligence from companies such as Kira, Seal, LinkSquares, Leverton, and Luminance. “Using this software, law departments can accelerate and improve the accuracy of contract data extraction and regulatory compliance, particularly in light of ever-changing compliance rules globally, from IFRS, Brexit or Europe’s new General Data Protection Regulation.”
But music-streaming platform Spotify also earned a viral hit from the new legislation, with a “GDPR playlist” helping to shed light on the regulations, with tunes like “What’s your name?” “I know what you like” and “So many details”.
This is hilarious! @Spotify has a I <3 GDPR playlist!
— Rishabh Mehrotra (@erishabh) May 25, 2018
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